Tag Archives: Vin Vino Wine

Chave: Great Northern Rhone Dynasty

Domaine Jean-Louis Chave is one of the Northern Rhone’s most important producers, along with Chapoutier and Thierry Allemand. The Chaves are also one of the world’s great winemaking dynasties, like the Antinoris in Tuscany and Hugels in Alsace. Chave produces not only excellent red Hermitage—a blend of grapes from parcels in seven different sections of that summit of Syrah—but also one of the world’s great white wines—Chave Hermitage Blanc. Continue reading

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Try Before You Buy: San Francisco Bay Area Wine Tastings

Here in the San Francisco Bay area we are blessed with many opportunities to taste and find out what we like before we buy. In my view, the single best resource both for wine newbies and those looking to deepen their knowledge of different types of wine are the neighborhood wine retailers that offer regular tastings. Continue reading

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Five Tips for Maximum Wine Enjoyment

By following these five simple tips, I guarantee you will get more enjoyment out of your next glass of wine. And I, for one, believe that’s what wine is there for—to be enjoyed, as well as to add to our enjoyment of a meal or special moment. As Benjamin Franklin so wisely wrote in his 1779 letter to the Abbé Morellet, wine is “a constant proof that God loves us, and loves to see us happy.” We owe it to this divine gift to make sure we do what we can to enjoy it to its full potential. Continue reading

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Wine Wednesday: A New Weekly Palo Alto Patch.com Feature

Introducing my new Wine Wednesday blog on PaloAltoPatch.com with a list of what I’m thankful for as a Palo Alto-based wine lover, wine writer and foodie. Continue reading

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J’Accuse: Criminal Stem Inclusion Levels in 2009 Bouchard Red Burgundies

What possesses people to take a beautiful ingredient and obscure its deliciousness with extraneous flavors taken from much lesser material? Who would go to all the trouble to buy some of Burgundy’s great terroirs–monopoles where gorgeous, minerally fruit has been grown for centuries–and dump a load of woody material into the fermentation, thereby obscuring the special fruit characteristics of the precious grapes? I for one don’t get it. I’ve ranted about this rising trend before, and I’m afraid it’s time for another attempt to get the attention of those who don’t appear to love and cherish pure Pinot Noir fruit as much as others that what they are doing is, essentially, a crime. They are robbing Pinot Noir grown in some of the most favorable spots on the planet of its moment to shine. They are stealing pleasure from those of us who look forward to a new vintage from some of our favorite vineyards. In other words, WTF Bouchard?? Continue reading

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Delicious Wine from a Challenging Year: 2008 J.L. Chave and Allemand Northern Rhones

I wasn’t expecting much from 2008 Northern Rhones after reading about the heavy rains that fell there, especially in early September, and the predominantly cool and overcast weather that hung over most of the growing season. So it was exciting to taste these 2008s from two of the best producers in the Northern Rhone, Jean-Louis Chave and Thierry Allemand, who seem to have pulled some delectable rabbits out of rain soaked hats in 2008. Continue reading

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2009 Red Burgundies: Thibault Liger-Belair, Gouges, J.M. Boillot, Matrot, Mongeard-Mugneret

This was a great opportunity for me to taste through more of the 2009 vintage, from producers whose wines I try most every year. I’d only sampled about forty 2009 red Burgundies prior to this tasting, including some absolutely stunning barrel samples of Faiveley premier and grand crus. From the wines detailed below, and what I’ve tasted before, I can see why the 2009 reds have been getting such great advance press. Most of these had sumptuous fruit and sweet tannins. Continue reading

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