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Aug
23

Sandhi Chardonnay ‘Rita’s Crown’ Sta. Rita Hills 2012

What I dream of is an art of balance. This famous line of Henri Matisse emblazons each bottle of Raj Parr and Sashi Moorman’s Sandhi project. Sandhi revolutionized Chardonnay in

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May
12

Spotlight on Napa Valley: Cliff Lede Poetry Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

Cult wines form an integral aspect of Napa Valley’s identity. They are not about the long history of the valley, its diversity, or its origin in and potential for classicism.

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May
6

Spotlight on Napa Valley: Stony Hill Vineyard

Long before the ‘new’ California took hold Stony Hill, nestled up on Spring Mountain, built its reputation on good-value, subtle, no-new-oak Chardonnay. It’s the ideal counter-narrative that demonstrates Napa is

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Apr
13

Spotlight on Napa Valley: Matthiasson Napa Valley Merlot “Red Hen Vineyard” 2012

Steve Matthiasson is decidedly re-inventing Napa. Making a name for himself at stalwart cellars like Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, Spottswoode, David Arthur and Saintsbury. Matthiason’s background is in farming and

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Apr
10

Spotlight on Napa Valley: Larkmead

Of the hundreds of pre-prohibition wineries in Napa Valley, only 5 remained open during the period. Larkmead was one of those wineries. Selling wine for sacramental purposes comprised the above

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Mar
19

Spotlight on Napa Valley: Inglenook

The story of Inglenook is, in many ways, the story of Napa Valley. The winery’s journey through eras and ownership is both emblematic of the big changes California wine has

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Mar
16

Spotlight on Napa Valley: Spottswoode Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

Napa is a challenging place for wine lovers today. The wines are almost inimitably expensive, save Bordeaux. The once storied valley is replete with overripe wines. But, times are changing.

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Mar
2

Failla “Savoy Vineyard” Anderson Valley Pinot Noir 2015

Failla is, for my money, one of the most exciting relatively new projects in Napa Valley. Though it was founded in 1998, the winery didn’t come fully into its own

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Feb
15

Sandlands Mataro San Benito County 2015

Sandlands is one of my favourite boutique projects in California. Started by Turley Winemaker Tegan Passalacqua as a passion-project to showcase and support California’s heritage vineyards (mostly those planted on

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Jan
8

Rhys Horseshoe Vineyard Syrah 2013

In my view Rhys is one of the most exciting wineries in the United States. Unlike the vanity-projects of many other Silicon Valley millionaires, owner Kevin Harvey is clearly dedicated