Natural Mexican Wine

Natural Wine

By Catherine | On Oct 1, 2017 | No Comments

One of my favorite new wine shops/wine bars in the Los Angeles area is Stanley’s Wet Goods in Culver City.  Last week, I attended a class on the topic of Natural Wine. There is much disagreement about what constitutes “natural ” wine, but in general, the following characteristics apply: – Grapes grown using sustainable, organic, or biodynamic techniques (see my…

Cube wines

The Cube Project

By Catherine | On Jul 30, 2017 | No Comments

The Cube Project was conceived in 2010 by winemaker Thomas Houseman of Anne Amie Vineyards in Carlton, Oregon, Andrew Brooks of Bouchaine in Napa’s Carneros region, and Leslie Mead Renaud from Lincourt Vineyards in Solvang, California. Each participant chose a single block of Pommard Pinot Noir (Pommard was chosen in order to help control variables between the sites) and sent the…

kevin-soucie

The Wine Abides During WBC16 in Lodi

By Catherine | On Sep 25, 2016 | No Comments

The Friday night wine country excursions are my favorite event during the Wine Blogger’s Conference.  You don’t know where you are going until you get on the bus and I have never been disappointed.  There was a new twist this year during the opening night reception when we were able to select our excursions via a display of “hints.”  After…

Lodi Syrah

Sunrise Harvest in Lodi

By Catherine | On Sep 4, 2016 | 3 Comments

On the second day of the 2016 Wine Blogger’s Pre-Conference Excursion in Lodi, my phone alarm began chiming at 5:00 a.m. I am never awake at this hour! But an experience not to be missed lay ahead. Our fearless leaders, Randy Caparoso and Jenny Heitman, loaded us onto our bus and we drove to the vineyards at Michael David Winery…

Lodi Grapes

Loving Lodi

By Catherine | On Aug 21, 2016 | 1 Comment

The 2016 Wine Blogger’s Conference was held in Lodi, CA from August 10-14.  Lodi is located in the Central Valley and has been growing wine grapes for over 150 years.  Fourth and fifth generation wine growers have been joined by newer vintners and the area, which enjoys a Mediterranean climate, produces a wealth of grape varietals. Best known for Old…

Stone Tower Windswept

Stone Tower Winery

By Catherine | On Jun 30, 2016 | No Comments

A visit with my daughter in May provided the opportunity for another wine tasting excursion to Loudoun County, just south of Leesburg, VA.  She had visited Stone Tower Winery in the past and highly recommended it for both its gorgeous setting and excellent wines.  The drive was beautiful, through rolling hills, farmland, and eventually, vineyards.  Stone Tower is located on…

108

Ballard Canyon

By Catherine | On May 26, 2016 | No Comments

During the 2014 Wine Blogger’s Conference, I was introduced to Ballard Canyon and the world class Syrah that is produced there. While traveling in California recently, I wanted to return to the area and have another opportunity to taste the Syrahs. Ballard Canyon is one of the newest and smallest AVAs (American Viticultural Area).  It is made up of 7,700…

041

Viticulture: Organic? Sustainable?

By Catherine | On Feb 7, 2016 | 2 Comments

Lots of people are making the effort (and spending the money!) to consume more organic foods. But what about wine? Let’s take a look at the various farming techniques and philosophies that include organic, biodynamic, and sustainable viticulture. First, some definitions. Organic Viticulture This is defined as grapes grown in accordance with principles of organic farming which typically exclude the…

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Wine Blogger’s Conference 2015 – Opening Day

By Catherine | On Aug 29, 2015 | 3 Comments

The first full day of the conference opened with an inspiring keynote address from Karen MacNeil, wine expert and writer, who is most well known for her book The Wine Bible. This sentence captures Karen’s philosophy: “For Karen, wine is more than a beverage; it’s a communal passage into the business of living well.” Among the points she made that most…

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Finger Lakes Day Two and Its Viticulture

By Catherine | On Aug 24, 2015 | 1 Comment

This is a complex subject to condense down to a blog post.  Nevertheless, let’s give it a try. Regardless of the growing region, there are hybrid grapes and Vitis vinifera. Hybrids are crosses between two grape, or vitis, species and Vitis vinifera are crosses between the same grape species. The Concord and Niagara are examples of well known hybrid grapes…

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