Tag Archives: Food

A Wild Fall White Wine: Nino Negri, Ca’Brione, Valtellina, Italy 2015

For all intents and purposes, it is basically Fall. Actually Halloween as my wife started decorating in August.  But with temperatures dropping and rain falling, I want a white wine with some meat on its bones.  Tired of the same old Chardonnay? Then you have come to the right post.

Let us fly to the crown of Italy, 30 minutes from Switzerland, where the valley of Valtellina slices open a couple Alps. Continue reading

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Tired of Malbec? Try Cabernet Franc from Argentina

Think of Argentinian wine. If Malbec comes to mind followed by a shrug or shudder, I feel your pain. Argentina has tumbled down this monovariety’s path, much like Australia did with Shiraz decades ago.  Malbec became the recession’s answer to find a big red for less.  But it is a race to the bottom that backfires.  The grape, and Argentina by association, are now caged by their success.  They exist in most minds as a cheap alternative. Continue reading

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Family Matters: Winery Tour of Trefethen Family Vineyards Oak Knoll Napa Valley California

Go to Napa or read the back of a wine label: most wineries will insist that a family owns them. This selling tactic attempts to ground all the Disney-land glamour onto something parochial and familiar.  But family ownership is not unique, roughly 80% of wineries in Napa are. Nor does family ownership ensure smallness or quality. Gallo is a family. So are mafias. Heck, corporations are people these days.

Thus, I visit Trefethen with trepidation. They too point to the Trefethen family’s ownership as a defining feature. But is it? Continue reading

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A Second Round of Opus One

My job has flung me back to Opus One. A year and a half ago my wife and I paired our eighth anniversary with a visit. After three hours, we left impressed but confused. Can a single wine, no matter how good, merit a whole facility and army of employees?

Well, time for the prodigal son to return. Continue reading

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Mini Champagne Off

We have a few splits of Champagne left over from my Christmas gift to the wife. We can’t feel as guilty since they’re half bottles, so we open them for a side by side comparison. Guess which one is so … Continue reading

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