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Showing posts with the label winery

2020 Penny's Hill Malpas Road McLaren Vale Merlot

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  Situated in McLaren Vale which happens to be one of Australia's most exciting wine regions, here are things you would want to know about the Penny’s Hill Winery . History Established in 1988, this promising winery is named after the hill at the base of which it is located. Considering this winery has all the elements of a great vineyard in place, the vines were planted in 1991 at the property in a unique narrow-row configuration to amplify vineyard productivity along with grape and wine quality. In the year 1993, the newly-planted Malpas Road property was purchased, followed by an adjacent highly prized hay-producing paddock in 1996 that was planted to vines and named Goss Corner. After wo years, the original Goss family homestead, ‘Ingleburne’ was added to the Malpas and Goss properties to reconnect to make it an entire holding. Ownership & The Team Founder Tony Parkinson passed on the ownership and management of the business to his good friend and fellow Sou

2019 Pope Valley Winery Sauvignon Blanc

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  We've been tasting and writing about some lovely white wines lately and that has put us in the mood for warmer weather.  The 2019 Pope Valley Winery Sauvignon Blanc is without a doubt a wine that you should stock up on for summer sipping!  Not only is it very affordable, but it is extremely well put together and very tasty.  Pale to medium yellow in the glass, aromas of lemon zest, wild grasses and stone fruits work well together and get the mouth watering.  In the mouth is a lively, welcoming combination of lemon candy, lime and the wonderful crispness that we expect from a well-made Sauvignon Blanc.  We tasted this at room temperature of 67° like we do most wines to really capture the aromas.  There's a zippy finish that presents hints of river rock and we think this wine is a keeper! ABV:  14.37% Napa Valley, CA 1,050 cases produced Suggested retail price:  $20.00 Drink The Bottles score:  91/100

2017 Patel Winery Sauvignon Blanc

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  I wish you all could have been here to experience this wine with me.  That's not me bragging, but rather telling you that you are missing out on an incredible opportunity if you don't seek out this wine!  For Sauvignon Blanc lovers, this wine will prove to be something out of the ordinary and wonderfully delicious.  This wine was tasted at room temperature (67°) as are all of our white wines. Most of the time when we think of Sauvignon Blanc, we think brightness and lemongrass.  And most of the SB on the market taste very similar - until now.  The 2017 Patel Winery Sauvignon Blanc is unlike any in recent memory.  Medium golden in the glass with focused aromas of lemon peel, nutty cheese and dried spices.   The  wine has a fuller mouthfeel than most Sauvignon Blanc, but does not feel weighted or heavy in any way.  The flavors of lemon candy, basil, mint and oak are dominant but again, a lovely, smooth mild cheese flavor presents itself in the back end.  In some ways this wine

2017 Pope Valley Winery Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

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We absolutely LOVE trying new wines!  And we get super-excited when we get a chance to work with someone we have never tasted before, as is the case here.  This is the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley) from Pope Valley Winery.  As you can see, in the glass what you would expect from a beautiful Cabernet - dark to the rim.  This young wine was swirled extensively and the cherry and spice aromas leaped effortlessly from the glass.  In the mouth was blackberry preserves, cedar, at times a hint of dark chocolate and a very solid and definite finish.  Despite teetering the 15% ABV mark, this wine is not hot in any way, which is testament to the winemaker and time in the barrel.  The tannin was surprising small and soft.  The winemaker states that this wine spent 26 months in oak before bottling and we absolutely love the youthfulness and potential to age this wine.  This would be a fun one to open again in a year, 3 years and 5 years.  At this price point, you really can't go wrong

Why Digital Ambassadors are Important to Wineries

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Things in the world right now are weird, to say the least.  No matter which side of science you are on, the current global pandemic has wreaked havoc in everyone's daily lives, including their business.  As of this writing, many wineries are still closed while others are offering outdoor tasting experiences.  Long gone are the days of intimate cave tours, barrel tastings, winery tours and unique experiences - at least for now.  Virtual tastings are becoming a 'thing' with smart savvy winery operators, but there are so many options in the world.  What's the best wine on the market?  This article will explain some of the ways that digital ambassadors (wine bloggers) can help wineries. In today's digital world of electronic payments, on-demand everything and the universe at our fingertips, the visibility of wine is absolutely crucial.  Wine bloggers can help wineries and wine brands expand their digital footprint with exposures to new audiences. Whether it's Gen-Z,

Navigating Wine Country During a Pandemic (aka let's help each other)

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There is little doubt that the first half of 2020 has been anything less than unexpected from what most would consider a 'normal' daily life.  The global pandemic has affected every person in some way, and most people significantly enough to alter their lifestyle, even if temporarily.  Work, school, daycare and financial hardships have reached into most homes, creating a fear of uncertainty and anxiety for many.  But all is not lost.  Whether it is a false sense of security, the need to return to an accustomed lifestyle or a belief that the worst of this virus is over, people are starting to venture out of their homes and travel.   There is no doubt that a large number of the world's population are still cautious and some, even frightened, about the health of the world and those around us.  It's difficult to control the actions of those around us, but by using common sense and social distancing, we can begin to appreciate the lives we are customary of enjoying.  I, for

The $200 Wine Tasting Fee and Why You Should PASS!

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I recently followed up with a contact from a Napa Valley winery who I had virtually met about two years ago.  We are currently planning a trip to wine country in late August and she had previously left an open invitation to host me and a guest for a private tasting the next time we were in town.  I have always been a fan of this particular winery and they make ONE varietal every year.  Their inaugural vintage was beautifully crafted, and according to popular ranking publications, each year seems to get better and better (or so the points would leave us to believe).  While the winery itself is about 10 years old, the family behind the juice has been making wine for decades, in fact, multiple generations. Before I get into this article further, let me say that I wholeheartedly believe that wineries should charge for tastings.  There is no doubt about it.  I think that paying for the tasting experience cuts down on the weekenders who are looking to just get loopy (aka "Wine Country&q

Arns Winery NV Impromp2 2 Cabernet Sauvignon

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This non-vintage 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from Arns Winery started out as an experiment in wine aging and Sandi Belcher and her team have hit a home run.  This wine is a fine example of smart blending, expert wine making and risk taking that paid off in a big way.  This wine has three separate vintages in a single bottle.  This wine is rooted in a gorgeous purple color and presents lung-filling aromas of ripe blackberries, chocolate, saddle leather and toasty cedar.  There's a great mid palate feel with this one and generous flavors of dark berries, cedar, dark chocolate, tar and spice box.  This is everything you want to see in a quality Cabernet Sauvignon and I think this is an experiment that went extremely well!  I love seeing winemakers step outside of the box and I think you'll love this too.  Only 200 cases were produced and at this price point, it won't last long. ABV:  14.5% Napa Valley, California Suggested retail price:  $65.00 Drink The Bo

2013 Arns Winery Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon

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This 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from Arns Winery is another fine example of a powerfully restrained, still young wine with tons of potential.   I "Drink The Bottles" when I get them, so unfortunately, sometimes I miss out what are probably the best years of many stellar wines.  I think that is the case here with the 2013 Estate Grown Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from Arns Winery .  This wine has a gorgeous, sexy black color and a depth that you can see and feel.  Layers of chocolate cake, tobacco leaf, spicy paprika, and cherry cola marry with ease on the nose and in the mouth.  I feel like this wine has so much more to offer and the flavors will explode out of the glass in the next 3-5 years.  But who can wait??  This is a wine that is very tasty now, but will probably bring tears of joy to your eyes if you hold onto it and save it for that special occasion or special someone in the not-so-near future.  With only 300 cases produced, you better grab this quickly! ABV:

2012 Arns Winery Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon

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2012 was a mixed year for many wine producers.  Some soared and some struggled.  Those who did soar rose way above the competition and this 2012 Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon from Arns Winery is a fine example of wine made gorgeously and with style.   There is a big contrast in color from the 2011.  This was is very dark and inky, leaving behind a beautiful stamp on the cork.  I decanted this wine for about an hour but couldn't help myself to get lost in the aromas dark fruits, black licorice and damp, loam earthiness.  Solid mouthfeel and the aromas carry over to the same flavors, but add in some cocoa powder and hints of sweet berries on the finish for a mouth covering and memorable drinking experience.   Arns Winery wines are those that you want to take with you to a dinner party.  These are also great wines to share with folks who are not traditionally "wine people", but beware that those folks may think that all wines are this delicious! ABV:  14.8%

2011 Arns Winery Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon

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This is the first selection I've had the pleasure of tasting from Arns Winery and I will say without a doubt that they have spoiled me.  Sandi Belcher, winemaker for Arns Winery, had a challenging year as did most in California for this vintage.  But persistence pays off and it has paid off in a BIG way with this 100% varietal 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon!  Bright garnet in the glass and solid to the rim, this wine is not a big fruit bomb and certainly doesn't present itself like a wine of this age.  This gorgeous Cabernet is more reminiscent of an old world Bordeaux style, with muted fruit being replaced by rose petals, barn wood, ripening vegetables and shoe leather.  Instantly, you are transported to a place that is surrounded by people who don't just pop and pour, but truly savor wines that are complex like this with chocolate bits, braised beef, crushed black cherries and again with that beautiful, old world style barn wood and damp earth.  The finish isn't except

2016 Dawn's Dream Winery Pinot Noir Rosè

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Most of the time people see pink wines, they probably think White Zinfandel.  And then come back flooding memories of a $9 gallon jug of brash, highly acidic and flavorless wine that you can barely choke down, only to wake up with heartburn for days.  Some much of that $3 bottle junk has turned people off of rosè wines because it's hard to get over the stigma and differentiate between junk and delicious rosè that is made from fine Pinot Noir.  So, have a seat, clear out the bad mojo and open your mind to this exquisite 2016 Dawn's Dream Winery Pinot Noir Rosè from the Santa Lucia Highlands.  Beautiful salmon colored in the glass from center to edge, this light wine presents stewed strawberries, brioche, watermelon and summer rain.  It's bright on the tongue and best served moderately chilled with very mild cranberry, strawberry and fresh bread dough in the mouth.  A cup of lobster bisque would be a great marriage, but so would a fresh vegetable platter, shrimp tempura

2015 Readers Merlot

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I'll admit that I've never been to Columbia Valley, Washington, but it seems that I need to make a trip sometime.  The wines that are coming out of this region are really putting a smile on my face these days, and the 2015 Readers Merlot from Bookwalter Winery is no exception.  What's the first thing wine snobs will look at when they see this bottle?  The screw top.  While I love the resounding "pop" of a cork, I also learned all too long ago that screw tops technically are the best best for most wines: no tainted corks, renewable resource in recyclable caps, etc.  Ok, I just realized I haven't talked about the wine at all and clearly it is the star of this show!  This is a blend of Merlot (90%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (10%) and it presents itself very stoically in the glass.  Aromas of black cherry, hints of blueberry and chocolate and it you're a super-swirler like I am, you might even pick up some green earth and cherry tobacco.  Incredibly soft ta