Entries by shawn

Languedoc Wine

 

 

History often reveals revolutionaries and pioneers as brave explorers that are often greatly respected and admired. Vineyard growers and people producing wine in the Languedoc region in the south of France show all signs of being those that are planting a stake in the ground to establish something great.

 


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The dichotomy is that while Languedoc is both the oldest and largest producing region (220K Hectares or 544K acres from the city of Nimes to Spain) in France, it is still a region that appears to be reestablishing itself in the wine world, and it deserves recognition. 
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"The terroir of the ...
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Big Secret in Napa Valley

Arcadi Wine

Napa Valley Cabernet is so often the go to wine for many wine aficionados. I have often been curious to the question of how/when a Cabernet producer like Screaming Eagle, Bryant Family, Harlan Estate, and so many others, move from entering the market place, to becoming a high demand, California Cult Wine.

Recently, I had the opportunity to talk with an assistant to one of the worlds most notable cult winemakers (Heidi Barrett), his name, Tony Arcudi. Arcudi, now producing a very limited production (around 250 cases) of his first wine released under the name, Arcudi.

After speaking with ...

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Gargariste Wine Panel

The Garagiste Festival is one of those great wine events where visitors can discover numerous super small brands. In some cases these winemakers only produce a few barrels of wine. It is also worth mentioning that many of these wines are not found in a tasting room, or store shelves due to such low production.

Bob Tillman Eric Mohensi Larry Schaffer

The Saturday seminar in Solvang (Santa Ynez Valley) kicked off with a much lessor known varietal, Mourvedre. The panelist included (left) Bob Tillman from Alta Colina in Paso Robles, Eric Mohseni (middle) from the long time famed Zaca Mesa of Santa Barbara County, and Mr ...

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Hahn Family Wine SLH

Wine Pairing Ideas for Valentines - 

If you want to avoid the crowds, bad service and "special menu" that is inflated for 24 hours, celebrate at home.

  • Plank roasted copper river salmon    /     Hahn Family SLH Pinot Noir $30

Plank Salmon

 

PicpouldePinet

Oysters on the half shell    /

     Montmassot Picpoul de Pinet $10(Ask Your Wine Shop For Languedoc Wines For Big Value)

Oysters

 

Landmark Chardonnay

Roasted rack of lamb        

Landmark Vineyards Overlook Pinot Noir $30

Rack of Lamb

 

Ballento Brut Rose Sparkling Wine

Steamed Lobster with drawn butter    

  

Balleto Sparkling wine $42

Lobster pairing

 

Ballento Rose

Balletto Rose is for drinking while you cook, light meals, salads, or aperitif. $20 

Justin Cabernet

Pan seared filet mignon crusted with fresh ground pepper, rosemary ...

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Hahn Family Wines Sable Fish

 

Holman Ranch Wine Cave

 

Hahn Vineyards

When wine travelers are asked for what they look for in a wine trip, the response is typically interest in: beautiful locations, education, and good wines. For those feeling a bit adventurous and willing to break out and discover something new, consider Carmel Valley, Monterey County, and the Santa Lucia Highlands region of California's Central Coast. 

After a recent trip to this region, I found fantastic discoveries that I would suggest are highly recommended. Here is a suggested guideline to use for planning your next trip to wine country.
Hofsas House Sunset
Day 1: 
Plan your stay in Carmel by the sea ...
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Thanksgiving Wine

Thanksgiving always has its special recipes, and the wine should be planned for in the same way. So how does one select the right wine for such an occasion? 

The answer lies in the types of foods served, and those flavors that can contrast, or tie it all together. When thinking of thanksgiving flavors, some of the most prominent can often be rich flavors like in gravy, earthiness in things like cream of mushroom and herbs, buttery in turkey, breads, and many side dishes. There are certainly more, but these just might be a big part of the American standard ...
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Larner Corks

It is often said, "Wine is made in the vineyard." If this statement is true, then it might be a foregone conclusion that winemakers select their vineyards very carefully. Most industry professionals would likely agree that the fruit source is key, and is the reason so many consumers buy wines from specific regions and designated vineyards.

 

Larner General Store Vineyard

 

I had the honor being included in a rare viewing/tasting of the Larner Vineyard located in a newly (Oct 2013) designated AVA, Ballard Canyon, in Santa Barbara County. The tasting was a focused tasting of seven different winemakers' wines, all sourcing from the ...

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Earth day food & wine

Earth Day Food and Wine

Earth Day Food & Wine Festival 

 

Located: Paso Robles at Castoro Cellars on Hwy 46 West

 

 

When: April 18 is the main event ( however the entire weekend is filled with events 17th-19th) 

 

Time: VIP 1:00 PM $115 and General Admission $75 at 2:00 PM and ends at 5 PM 

 

Owl

 

What: Group of people interested in sustainable practices that are some of the best local chefs, farmers, and wineries all getting together to party.

 

 

Earth Day People

 

This just might be the most casual event you will find in the State without an ounce of pretension. These are some amazing people that simply ...

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Wine Alcohol Debate

Garagiste

The Garagiste Festival (Santa Ynez Southern Exposure)continues to shed light on smaller production winemakers. Many of these wine producers cannot be found on a wine map. In some cases, the wines poured cannot even be found in any bar, restaurant, or wine shop. The discoveries can be fun, interesting, and even stellar.

Preceeding the grand tasting in Solvang (Santa Barbara County), a panel of winemakers met to discuss the Great Alcohol Debate, The Elephant In The Bottle. This just might be a more inside or industry debate, but it can be a very hot topic in some circles.

Neither ...

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Adam Henkel Crown Point Wine

 

Recently I had the opportunity to speak with a former winemaker from a California cult winery, Adam Henkel. Adam packed his family and left behind Napa Valley and a few 100 point scores to come to Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara.
Q - How is the transition for you from Napa to Santa Barbara County?

A - "Certainly more relaxed down here even though this project itself is kind of pressure packed in terms of expectation for this property and the wines that come from this property, and I knew that coming in. I am cool with that, but it is much ...
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