Expert articles and wine tasting videos profiling wines from California, California wine regions, Napa Valley, Sonoma County, & more.

2018 Bedrock Wine Co. Riesling Wirz Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Cienega Vineyard, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

There is not a lot of great Riesling bottles from California, but this one is consistently pretty good and perhaps a bit better in this vintage.  Light gold/green in color, clear and bright.  The nose is nice with apples and some minerality.  Light to medium bodied.  On the palate, this is dry with moderately crisp acidity.  Green apple notes carry thru to the palate.  Nice finish.  This should drink well over the next seven to ten years.  This can be consumed with or without food.  Shellfish would be a nice choice.  

2016 Realm Cellars The Bard, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$200.00USD

This is a blend of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Merlot.   Purple in color, opaque and shimmering bright.  The nose is great with cassis, blueberries, cedar, spice and char.    Lush, velvety texture but lots of vibrancy.  On the palate, cassis and blueberry fruit with underlying tobacco and char.  Long finish.  This is still developing and will be for a decade.  That said it is delicious now and will continue to drink well for another fifteen to twenty years.  It drinks very well on its own and will work with bigger, fattier foods such as prime rib or a roasted veggie pizza.  

2015 Rivers-Marie Cabernet Sauvignon Calistoga, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$140.00USD

From the Larkmead Vineyard and made by Thomas Rivers Brown.  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has cassis, cedar,  blueberries, and spice.  Full bodied.  Firm tannins.  On the palate, this has juicy cassis fruit with some black cherries and some blueberries over cedar and char.  Still quite young, this should improve over the next eight to ten years and drink well for ten to fifteen after that.  Delicious and complex.  Right now this drinks better on its own and will need big flavors to stand up to it but with time it will settle down.  For now, braised short ribs would be

2007 Pott Wine Cabernet Sauvignon St. Ralph The Liar White Cottage Ranch, USA, California, Napa, Howell Mountain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2007
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

This is a brooding wine that is just starting to open up.  It improved with air.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose is concentrated with cassis, iodine, graphite and spice.  Full bodied.  Medium tannins.  The palate is also concentrated with cassis and spice.  Deep but stubborn.  Give it a decant.  Drink over the next ten to fifteen years. This will work well with grilled lamb chops or grilled portabellas.  

2011 Peter Michael Pinot Noir Ma Danseuse, USA, California, Sonoma, Fort Ross-Seaview Wine Review

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$125.00USD

Not the best vintage for this wine but it still showed nicely.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has cherries and spice.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, there is some complexity.  This seems to be at or maybe just past peak.  Sour cherries with an underlying spice.  Moderate finish.  Drink over the next five years.  For those who like sweetbreads, this would be a nice match.  

2014 Rivers-Marie Pinot Noir Summa Old Vines, USA, California, Sonoma Coast, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-

Deep ruby in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose has some funk with black cherry fruit.  On the palate, there is plenty of depth.  It is very tight and needs more time.  Some black cherry and sour cherry fruit with underlying earthiness.  Nice finish.  Probably best to hold another five to seven years and then drink for twenty after that.  This would work well with Grilled Salmon.  Lots of upside for those who are patient.  

2012 Booker Vineyard Oublie Extended Age 24 Months, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$87.00USD

Tasted side by side with the regular bottling, I slightly preferred this one.  It is also a blend of 44% Mourvedre, 36% Grenache and 20% Counoise.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim, opaque and bright.  The nose is similar with black raspberries, plums, gravel and spice.  Full bodied.  On the palate, this drinks a bit younger and also more expressive.  Lots of black raspberries, plums, some black cherries, black pepper and char.  More vibrancy.  Long finish.  Overall, the distinctions are small, but this did seem a bit younger with more going on.  Now, was that due to the extended ageing or

2012 Booker Vineyard Oublie, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$63.00USD

Tasted this side by side with the extended ageing slightly preferring the extended ageing.  This is a blend of  44% Mourvedre, 36% Grenache and 20% Counoise.  Purple in color with ruby at the rim, opaque and bright.  The nose is nice with black raspberries, slight plums, gravel and spice.  Full bodied.

2011 Torrin James Berry Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

This is a blend of 52% Syrah and 48% Grenache from one of the great Rhone varietal vineyards of California (or anywhere).  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright, ruby at the rim.  The nose is great with black raspberries, black cherries, smoke, roasted herbs, and a bit of meatiness.  Full bodied.  Complex and seemingly at peak.  Layers of black raspberry and black cherry fruit with underlying char and slight earthiness.  Long finish.  Delicious.  This wine should continue to drink well for another ten to twelve years.  A nice match for Indian or Thal food.  

2009 Dehlinger 60% Petite Sirah/40% Zinfandel Guadagni Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Dry Creek, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2009
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-

Very nice showing for this.  Seems to be just about at peak, of course, noting that Zinfandel matures earlier and Petite Sirah later.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has boysenberries, black cherries, raspberries along with some leather and minerality.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, this has a nice complexity.  Also very tasty.  Layers of fruit (black and red raspberries) with some underlying minerality.  Nice finish.  This should have another five to seven more years and probably more.  It drinks well on its own and will work  well with all but the lightest foods.  A nice w

Pages