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Jul
23

Montes Alpha “M’ 2005

I virtually never drink Chilean wines. I happened to have this bottle in my cellar from many years ago – Montes’ top Bordeaux-style blend dominated by 80% Cab Sauv with

Monte Bello's oldest vines from 1940

May
8

A California Grand Cru: Visiting Ridge’s Monte Bello Vineyard

Abe Schoener is right. The greatest legacy of changing sentiments in the “new” California is increased focus on California’s best vineyards – its premier and grand crus. One of the

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May
7

Scholium Project Gardens of Babylon 2013

An ever evolving enterprise, Abe Schoener’s Scholium Project represents the soul of American innovation. Schoener has been making a huge range of quirky wines as far back as the mid

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May
16

Arnot-Roberts Cabernet Sauvignon Bugay Vineyard Sonoma County 2010

There is a new trend in California Cabernet – high acid, lower alcohol, less overt oak. These wines are not objectively better just because of the style. That’s one of

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May
3

Spottswoode Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2011

Rolling along with California Cabernets I love, Spottswoode is at the top of the list. Owned and run by mother and daughter team Mary and Beth Novak, this is one

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May
2

Philip Togni Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

I rarely buy California Cabernet. However, there are exceptions that I buy regularly. California’s classic contrast – wine you run from juxtaposed to wine you can’t get enough of. Philip

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Feb
8

Spotlight on Chianti Classico: Querciabella 2010

I commenced this spotlight with the goal of discovering the ‘terroir’ of Chianti Classico, the distinction between its various crus, and its potential to become driven by the distinctiveness of

Nov
14

Matthiasson Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2010

The malignancy that “Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon” bears with it to most sommeliers these days is a perceived lack of affinity with food. Oftentimes this is a valid perception, with

Aug
30

Loredan Gasparini Capo di Stato Colli Trevigiani Rosso IGT 2007

Before the Super Tuscans there was Capo di Stato from the Veneto, one of the first Bordeaux blends made in Italy that gained international attention. Founded in the 1950’s by

Jun
28

Dominus Estate 2001

Dominus takes a contrary approach to most Napa Valley Bordeaux blends. First off, Christian Moueix (also of Petrus) never discloses the cepage on the bottle. He also decries overripeness and