Ex- of Patz & Hall winery. Now working on new projects- Secret Door Winery and Maritana Vineyards. Explorer of old and new wines from near and far. Pictures and...
A monumental vintage in the Napa Valley that forever changed the interest and image of California wine. Burgess Cellars was producing some very compelling wines and this Vintage Selection is in its decline but still very good. Deep aromas of coffee, tobacco and aromatic wood along with floral and retained cherry/raspberry fruit notes. Drink now if you are lucky enough to have any. With all old wines storage is the key. — 6 months ago
I love this Washington Merlot. It’s distinctly different from California versions. This is Northstar’s high end offering. They are based in Walla Walla often thought of as the top area for Merlot in Eastern Washington but this carries the Columbia Valley designation. I just find that odd but there’s nothing odd about this wine... at all. It carries the rich texture and density of a great wine with a nice level of acidity and structure to hold it steady. Worthy of its hefty price. — 8 months ago
Greg Harrington loves his Rhône varietals but, wow is his Cabernet Sauvignon good. Fundamentally different from Bordeaux or Napa Valley but in its own way brilliant. Drink now or pass it to your grandchildren - up to you. — a year ago
I love Alder Springs Vineyard. It’s a fabulous spot dedicated to top quality growing and a variety of grape types. The people are just the best. It’s possible that the synthetic “cork” put me off but this wine was wobbling badly. Very over-the-top prune-tobacco - distinct oxidation - I’m sure this was better 10 years ago. Very possibly a storage issue since I purchased this at auction. Bummer. — 8 months ago
Mountain fruit always brings the tannins to the front but this 2016 Robert Craig version has plenty of ripe fruit to back it up. One of the wines I suspect will outlive a lot of us sharing our favorites here. This would be stride for stride with the most expensive Napa Cabernet Sauvignon wines. It’s a real deal. #californiawinechallenge — 8 months ago
Wine of the Year – 2020. What a year. Maybe it should be “Wine of the Apocalypse” 1976 MOUNT VEEDER WINERY “Niebaum-Coppola Vineyards” Napa Valley Cabernet Franc. Yes, I love old California wines and every wine I have declared “WOTY” has been from the 1970’s so far, but I believe it’s time to leave the 1970’s behind and move on so 2020 – we go with an obscure variety especially in 1976, Cabernet Franc. I’ve had this wine three times with the last one being this week. Mount Veeder wines from the 1970’s and early 1980’s still sport what may be my favorite label design ever. The David Lance Goines’ label (he also did Ravenswood) just rocks. Oh yeah, the wine...
From a low neck/high shoulder bottle with an intact cork the wine poured out with a delicate aroma of dried roses, light pipe tobacco, and even a hint of cherries. The texture was edgy and tart but nothing to panic about – just a bit of oxidation which would have been surprising if it was absent from a 44 year old wine! I sat with friend Jodi @jojosommface for a couple of hours at lunch and watched as this wine slowly unwound and displayed its full panoply of exotic flavors. At about opening +2 hours it was really stroking – now the aromas had morphed into anise, blackberry, that smell from first grade when you cleaned the pencil sharpener – sort of, cedar and graphite but more complex, some fig and date notes lingering. It was extraordinary in every way and a delight to drink and share.
The 1976 was the third vintage released by the winery started by Michael and Arlene Bernstein and I have no idea how many cases of the Cabernet Franc were made. There was also a Cabernet Sauvignon (I’ve also had), probably a Chardonnay. I’d never seen this wine until it started coming up on wine auctions about ten years ago. I miss wines like this and certainly in my own way craft the Secret Door wines to perform like this over time.
I hope that you and your family get to enjoy wonderful wines together this Holiday Season. If you share one of my wines please feel free to post with your comments! — 8 months ago
Don’t let the points fool you. Barbera from California is in my opinion the best Italian variety red we do. This was fun. Bright and crisp and jumping with bing cherry laden juiciness. I would drink it again, except they stopped making it. — 8 months ago
These are fun wines to discover. Pilcrow. Not a family name! I love Napa Cabernet Sauvignon as you can tell - even though I probably drink a lot more Pinot Noir. Seek this out. All my favorite Napa Cabernet Sauvignon wines are both concentrated and balanced - nice work here! Ripe cherry/boysenberry cola flavors wound up with enough tannin to warrant a couple of decades in the deepest cold cellar. — 8 months ago
Classic Fleury - complex raspberry and cherry compote aromas but it n the mouth it really jumps. Importer Jack Edwards Selections and really underrated in my opinion. Yes. I drink French wines too. Just not very often! — 8 months ago