Tag Archives: Viognier

Breaking Bad: French Wine Rules VS Vincent Paris, Granit blanc, 2015

French wine has many, many, many rules.  Many.  To put a place name on a label might require using one grape type, one pruning method, a max yield, a min or max potential alcohol, using only sugar or water additions, barrel and bottle aging times. Why do the French do this?  Well, ideally, this preserves traditions and wine styles. Otherwise, France might endlessly chase trends: tearing up Merlot for Syrah in Bordeaux, planting Chardonnay in Sancerre, or making Prosecco in Champagne. *Shudder

In Cornas, northern Rhône’s smallest (possibly most adorable) region, you can only make 100% Syrah.   Continue reading

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Virginian Wine is for Lovers? Drinking Local -VS- Trendsetting

My wife’s conference brings baby and I to Virginia. We stay in Alexandria: namesake of our ten month old and posh tourist excursion from Washington DC.

“Really Dad?”

Now, with a week to kill, between eponymous photo-ops, I explore Alexandria’s wine shops and bottle bars.  Years have passed since I last sold or tried wine from Virginia. I remember liking it. Lean and structured, like Bordeaux, Baboursville Octagon Red seemed solid.

But a concern slowly creeps in.  Alexandria’s shelves and lists feature fab Sancerre, German bubblies, Rhône growers, interesting South African Chenin Blanc, Langhe Nebbiolo, and Californian classics.  Heck, every shop has at least three Oregon Pinot Noir, even unseen single vineyards, and I come from Oregon. Continue reading

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Black Stallion Winery Napa Valley

Our Napa Valley tour keeps rolling. Our morning snuck around Pine Ridge (read here). Our mid-day got blasted by Lewis Cellars’ monster wines (read here). By now, our palates feel numb. Our teeth look black. But ever the professional, high-functioning alcoholics, we head South on the Silverado Trail to Black Stallion.

Past the big metal horse, the winery campus feels vast, dry-scaped with olives and citrus, and recalls a mission. Here 32 acres served as Silverado Horseman’s Center until 2007, when it became a winery. Continue reading

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Paso Robles 5: Austin Hope Treana Tasting Cellars

Wayward Wine continues its exploration of Paso Robles wineries. One day starts in search of wine for a wedding. An up-scaled, wood-planked warehouse sits between biotech buildings and similar sheds. Inside, large indigo walls fly up two stories, splattered with animal heads and art. Lipstick red metal chairs frame the reclaimed wood bar and tables. House-sized curved wood panels mimic sliced barrels dividing the space. This is not a winery, it is a tasting lounge for the hip. Welcome to Austin Hope’s Treana Tasting Cellars. Continue reading

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Thirsty Thursday: Domaine Terlato and Chapoutier Shiraz Viognier Victoria Australia 2012

This Thirsty Thursday lights on a strange affair riven between three countries. The wine is from Domaine Terlato and Chapoutier. Neither name sounds very Australian. This is because Napa bound Tony Terlato began importing Michel Chapoutier’s wines from the Cotes … Continue reading

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