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111818 Rosè and Cioppino_ A Refreshing Pause

Rose and Cioppino: A Refreshing Pause

Posted on: November 19th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

Over the next month or so there will be times when many of us just want to “take a break” from the big meals and all the things that go along with it.  One suggestion to get this started is by serving up an Italian-style seafood dish.  Paired with a lighter wine, this can... Read More
Ancient Peaks Zin_ An Excellent Grilling Partner

Ancient Peaks Zin: An Excellent Grilling Partner

Posted on: October 24th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

Fall has been with us for over a month now, and for those who can’t wait to get out on the “cool patio”, skipping the chilled white wine for a sumptuous Zinfandel is an easy choice. So when you’re getting ready to go out and grill a big batch of something like “Chicken on... Read More
100118 Merlots_ Comparing a Couple 2014 Goodies

Merlots: Comparing a Couple 2014 Goodies

Posted on: October 2nd, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

The 2014 western states vintage was a big one, for big wines with a mouth-filling expression of lusciousness.  This is especially true with the red wines, many of which are so big that they must be aged more to reach their prime. In the meantime, we have been savoring a few 2014 red wines... Read More
The Big 4: Blended Cabernet from Medoc

The Big 4: Blended Cabernet from Medoc

Posted on: August 4th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

Continuing with the search for good values in French wine, the not-so-pricey Medoc region has worked to expand the export of a variety of labels into the American market.  But experience has shown that, as always, these are not all created equal.  Often, the same blends from the same Left Bank neighborhood in the... Read More
072018 Gary Farrell Pinot Noir: It’s all in the berries

Gary Farrell Pinot Noir: It’s all in the berries

Posted on: July 8th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

The 2015 vintage year in Sonoma County’s Russian River appellation, like many others in California, was a little tricky.  But in Russian River, the weather was perfect for Pinot Noir, bringing out some of their best qualities, featuring red berries and spices. If you want to get a broad brush of what happened in... Read More
On to Summer_ Alìe Rosè

On to Summer: Alìe Rosè

Posted on: June 10th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

Not many people know that Italy’s Tuscan region actually offers some very classy Rosè wines, but it does.  Among these are special blends from Frescobaldi’s South Tuscan “Ammiraglia Estate” that are crafted in this coastal territory using both Syrah and Vermintino. Even though Syrah by itself would be a little heavy for a hot... Read More
Mount Veeder Red Blend

Mount Veeder Red Blend: What a Little Elevation Can Do

Posted on: April 17th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

When exploring Napa Valley, California, one of the best little side trips for the morning is to drive up Mount Veeder and visit the winery operations that cling to the hills at about 1,600 feet.  This is an environment that is noticeably different from the valley floor below, and it also reflects in the... Read More
Schramsberg_Vintage Sparklers

Schramsberg: Vintage Sparklers

Posted on: March 25th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer 1 Comment

One topic that comes up a lot in tasting rooms is the absence of vintage years printed on bottles of Champagne and sparkling wine.  Most of the time, the reason given is that the fruit used in creating the bubbly in your bottle comes from more than one particular year’s harvest, so it’s better... Read More
Emblem Chardonnay

Taste With Elegance: Emblem Chardonnay

Posted on: March 4th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

One of the first things you’ll notice with skillfully created Chardonnays like Michael Mondavi’s “Emblem”, is the pronounced presence of a tart backbone. This one tilts more toward the “Burgundian Style”, even though it is a California wine. As such, this Chardonnay is produced with a carefully controlled mix of Malolactic and normally fermented... Read More
Frank Family Zinfandel

A BBQ champ: Frank Family Zinfandel

Posted on: January 14th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

As the production of American Zinfandel wine continues to grow in all areas, it is always interesting to take a look back at one of the Napa classics, Frank Family Napa Valley Zinfandel.  Once affectionately product-coded as “LPR” by the winery staff, it now has moved into the mainstream of availability. Sure, they offer a Reserve Zinfandel, but the standard offering is quite excellent.  This is especially true for outdoor cooking, or just for “cutting the... Read More

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