Recent articles

2014 Pieropan Soave Classico La Rocca, Italy, Veneto, Wine Review

Pieropan makes some amazing Soave wine from the Garganega grape.  This one is dry and works quite well at the table.  Light golden in color.  The nose has slight under ripe peach, some honey and a bit of spice.  On the palate, this is dry.  Crisp acidity.  Peaches and honey carry thru but more about the minerality.  Nice texture.  Drank over two days without any change.  Has a decade left easy.  

2014 Marietta Cellars Angeli Cuvée, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

Purple in color with ruby swirls.  The nose has cherry candy, some char and spice.  On the palate, this has a nice texture.  The cherry candy fruit carries thru.  Not a lot of acidity but some.  Needs some bigger food to work with.  This is a Zinfandel blend that retails for around $30.  Drink up in the next couple of years as this probably won't make old bones.  

2004 A. Rafanelli Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Sonoma, Dry Creek Valley, Wine Review

Purple in color.  The nose is very nice with cassis, a bit of barnyard, slight tobacco and dust.  On the palate, this seems to be at peak.  Plenty of fresh cassis fruit but some tertiary development is showing as layers of damp earth, and slight decayed vegetation (in a good way).  Tannins are just about resolved.  It did seem to improve slightly in a decanter as it opened up and blew off a bit of bottle stink.  Nice finish.  Worked well with a nice plate of pasta.  It won't get better from here, and these should probably be drunk in the next five to ten years depending on how you like you

1992 Dominus Estate Napanook Vineyard, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Pop and pour.  Purple with ruby swirls, still looking bright.  The nose is nice.  Cassis, dried currents, tobacco and dust.  On the palate, this took some time to open and then was singing.  At peak or perhaps just a bit past, this won't last as long as the 01 or the 94, but it has plenty of great drinking left.  Layers of cassis, dried fruits and dry earth.  Good balance.  Very food friendly.  A lot in common with and older Bordeaux but still has some energy and sunshine screaming California.  

2001 Château de Schengen Riesling Vendange Tardive, Luxembourg, Moselle Luxembourgeoise, Wine Review

Easily the best Luxemourgish dessert wine with age on it ever tasted!  Ok, this is not very common.  It was purchased on a visit to the winery.  From a 375ml.  Light golden color with a bit of green.  The nose is nice with wet rocks, slight grapefruit and a bit of honey.  On the palate, this has some acidity bit not a lot.  Good depth and complexity.  Viscous texture.  Worked well with an assortment of cheeses.  A fun experience as well.  Less acidity than its German counterparts and more minerality than its Alsatian neighbors.  Very nice.  

2016 Ravage Wines Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Wine Review

This retails for between $8 and $13 depending on location and store.  It certainly would be a fun wine for a Halloween party.  And for the price, this will be a popular wine at the party.  Bright, deep purple in color.  The nose has black cherries and some black raspberries with some dust and a bit of spice.  On the palate, this is ever so slightly sweet/ripe.  Lots of black cherry fruit as well.  It has a lush texture and drinks well on its own.  Would work with bigger foods or apps.  An interesting mid-evil looking label.  Is this amazing?  Not really.  But, one could pay twice as much fo

2012 Realm Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer To-Kalon Vineyard

Pop and pour, like many 2012's this seems a bit shut down right now.  Luckily, there was time to wait.  After about an hour it opened nicely.  inky purple in color.  The nose has black cherries, cassis, spice, dried cherries and a slight tobacco note.  On the palate, this is drinking quite well.  Black cherries and spice.  Nice texture.  Sill young, it unwinds in the glass.  Deep and tightly complex.  Good finish.  This is a robust wine that needs about five years of good cellaring.  It has a couple of decades left.  Will work with bigger foods but works great on its own right now.  

2013 Maybach Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Materium, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Wow.  This wine should make old bones, but it is so good now, it is not likely to.  Stunning wine that seemingly gets better and better.  This bottle was consumed over 4 hours and the last glass was the best.  Inky purple in color.  The nose has cassis, graphite, cedar, blueberries and spice.  On the palate, this has a seamless texture.  Delicious.  Deep and tightly layered; it explodes in the glass.  Tons of cassis and blue berries layered with minerality and spice.  Medium tannins.  Long finish.  It does need bigger or spicier food, but it is oh so good.  

1992 Ravenswood Pickberry, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

This is a "Right Bank" styled wine.  There were some concerns over opening at age 26.  The cork looked in great shape.  The wine was decanted for sediment.  There was a lot on the side of the bottle and in the wine.  Ruby in color.  The nose is older but nice.  Cigar box, cherries, dried cherries, slight old leather and slight black cherries.  On the palate, this took a bit to open up and then it drank beautifully.  Complex and layered.  Cherries, dried tobacco, dry earth.  No tannins.  Good and in balance acidity.  Nice finish.  Not an OMG wine, but a very good wine that would compare favo

2013 Rhys Chardonnay Alpine Vineyard, USA, California, Santa Cruz, Wine Review

This was very tight at first.  Probably should have decanted for an hour.  After a bit, it opened and was excellent.  Yellow/gold in color.  The nose is vanilla/lemon cream.  Although "Burgundian" certainly could be used, it is a pretty consistent nose from this vineyard.  On the palate, this has a creamy texture.  Nice lemon cream with a touch of vanilla and an underlying minerality.