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Sunday
May032009

2006 Saxum Vineyards Syrah - Bone Rock, James Berry - Paso Robles, Ca

Had a chance to taste this one at the 2009 Hospice du Rhône. An amazing effort—extracted, yet pure and complex. Floral aromatics leap from the glass with red berry fruit, Chinese five spice, and hints of violet and dried lavender. On the palate, black currant and ripe raspberry, along with wonderful, earthy sweet oak spice. A fine minerality and silky tannins balance the fruit. A blend of 76% Syrah, 18% Mourvédre and 6% Grenache. Generous and richly textured it is expansive through the finish. Winemaker Justin Smith has crafted another standout and continues to be at the top of his craft.

price: $115.00
drink: 2009 through 2018
online

Sunday
May032009

Chef Tom Douglas -- A Chef or a Comedian?

Chef Tom Douglas with our own Laura SaboBy: Laura Sabo  Recently, I had the privilege of being in the audience where Chef Tom Douglas demonstrated his cooking — and humor — as part of Macy’s Culinary Council. Chef Tom is a well respected chef in the Seattle area owning Dahlia, Dahlia Bakery, Etta’s, Palace Kitchen, Lola and Serious Pie. He’s not talking apple or cherry pie, but pizza pie. I haven’t had the pleasure of trying Serious Pie yet, but the audience members that had were, shall I say, serious fans.

I don’t personally know Chef Douglas, but I immediately felt at home when he graciously agreed to a picture not only of him but insisted that I be in it as well. Although I should refer to him as Chef Douglas, I don’t think he would mind one iota being called Chef Tom instead. Read More  

Monday
Apr272009

2008 Captûre "Tradition" Sauvignon Blanc - California

This is a first release from Captûre Wines and the winemaking team of May-Britt and Denis Malbec (Château Latour). Lovely aromatics along with complex flavors of pomelo, guava, pear and pink grapefruit rind. A somewhat racy acidity, along with a distinct minerality balance the whole and lend elegance. The wine finishes long, clean and crisp, inviting another sip.

The fruit was sourced from the volcanic clay soils of Kick Ranch in the foothills of Bennett Valley and from the rocky, 1400-foot-high elevation slopes of Windrem Ranch in Kelseyville in Lake County. The wine was hand harvested and fermented in stainless steel, then aged on its lees for four months with weekly stirring to give a signature creaminess and texture. A total of 550 cases were produced.

We feel Captûre will be a brand to watch for and seek out. The estate of Tin Cross Vineyards is located high atop Pine Mountain, above the Alexander Valley floor. The team here is doing some amazing viticultural work as they prepare to release their signature Bordeaux styled small production blends in the near future.


price: $32.00
drink: 2009 through 2010
online

Monday
Apr272009

Price and Quality Make Abella Worth the Drive...

By: Valerie Brockbank  Wilsonville Ore. is a small city on the south-side of Portland. It’s a twenty minute drive to downtown Portland, about 30 minutes to the vineyards of Salem or the Willamette Valley, and is still surrounded by farms and orchards. The town was built around the ferry crossing, which was the way across the Willamette River until the I-5 freeway was built.

Wilsonville has a lot to offer, but as a resident, I know fine dining isn’t on the top of the activities list. An exception to that is Abella Italian Kitchen, a comfy, friendly meeting place in a mall next to the library, run by owners Mark and Sue Nelson, and their chef Luis Cruz. Read More 

Monday
Apr272009

2005 Mahoney Vineyards Nebbiolo - Las Brisas - Carneros AVA

Ripe and juicy, this wine offers a nicely textured mouth full of flavor. Dried field herbs and dark cherry on the nose and palate, finishing with just a touch of oak spice. This wine is an interesting find and very well priced. Rarely grown in Sonoma, Nebbiolo is an important varietal grown in the Piedmont region of Italy. The wine was aged for 15 months in French oak. A fine bit of acidity will allow this one to pair well with grilled meats, or stews and roasts. Limited quantities are available from the winery.

price: $18.00
drink: 2009 through 2011
online

Wednesday
Apr222009

Put a Cork in Global Warming: Recycle Those Wine Corks 

By: Laura Sabo  In January, Willamette Valley Vineyards, Whole Foods Markets, the Rainforest Alliance and Western Pulp Products introduced the Cork Re-Harvest Program in an effort to make consumers aware of the importance of recycling cork from wine bottles. Why not make this a habit and part of your recycling routine? It’s easy and a win-win situation. Read more 

Monday
Apr202009

2007 Truchard Vineyards Chardonnay - Carneros - Napa, Ca

I have always enjoyed the consistency and quality of Chardonnay from Truchard Vineyards. This 2007 expresses sweet wildflower, lemon curd, and vanilla spice on the attack. Flavors of tropical pineapple, fig, lavender honey, hints of pear and oak spice abound. A backbone of refreshing acidity gives balance. Finishing with more bright citrus and a bit of toasty oak, the wine was whole cluster pressed, and is 100% barrel fermented in French oak. Aged in barrel (sur lees) for 10 months, the wine has great texture and richness.

price: $30.00
drink: 2009 through 2011
buy online