Tag Archives: Oak

An Amarone for October: Le Ragose 2007

Cold fixes in this side of the hemisphere. Leaves catch fire. Grey and rain dampen the ether. It is not Port season yet. But it is Fall. And I have the perfect wine.

Fly to Valpolicella, valley of many cellars. In the hills overlooking fair Verona grow swaths of vines. The Galli family tend 70 terraced acres near 1,200 feet above sea level: the highest in the region. They bought the abandoned vineyard in 1969.  Here, it is dry, above the fog line, cool yet sunny: perfect for appassimento, aka grape-drying. Continue reading

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A Paso Robles Right Bank Wine-Off Daou vs Justin

With our house a block of ice, I turn to southern climes for sunnier respite. This manic Monday’s glass travels to Paso Robles AVA: California’s hot hills of heritage Zinfandel vines and huge Syrah wines. Continue reading

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Gaja For The Rest of Us: Ca’Marcanda Promis 2013 Bolgheri Tuscany Italy

Winter closes in. For sad psychological reasons, I now don jackets or sweaters to enjoy chilled whites. I suppose a red will not hurt. Also, we have guests and pizza for dinner. So, a modern Italian seems apt. I rummage around in my crawl space. Why not open an $100 Chianti? Erm….no.

I have lost all grip on reality. My job allows me to try and collect fancy, expensive things. The cost to retail has become my reference point. A wine that costs a shop $25 ends up $33 to $40 on the shelf for the unwashed masses. So all I remember is that I spent $25. Or worse, I was given it. Continue reading

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Etude Winery Visit Napa Valley Carneros

After an unnecessarily ostentatious day-long tour from Mt Veeder to Howell Mountain with Cardinal (read P1 here read P2 here), we somehow wake up early. Our mouths blackened and livers tested by endless Cabernet, Merlot, and Malbec, we rejoice knowing that today, after four days of monster reds, we try Napa Valley Pinot Noir.

We bomb down to Carneros, Napa’s most southerly AVA.

Carneros Napa Valley Map Continue reading

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Graves Open Doors 3: Château Caillivet in Bordeaux

Today continues our exploration of Graves: Bordeaux’s diverse, left-bank, value region that struggles in the shadow of famed and pricier Haut-Médoc. A white van has toured us around the village of Langon, visiting its wineries for free (this is an EU Austerity Drinking Tour after all).

We leave “Château” la Croix’s rustic charm. A new driver asks for our next winery. The local girls say something. I blankly agree. But my wife’s glare cuts me down.

“They don’t like you”, she growls. “I know. But it doesn’t really matter which winery we go to.” “Yes, but you choose one, they don’t want us around”. “Fine”. Angry, tipsy, and both of us sick and stuffy we continue to whisper/fight. Continue reading

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