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

2016 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Old Vine, USA, California, Wine Review

One of my go to wines for inexpensive but really good red wines.  This costs around $25 a bottle and really over delivers.  Purple in color.  The nose has some raspberries, dark cherries, a bit of bramble, and some char.  On the palate, this has a nice full bodied texture.  It is young now and would probably last 10 years except that I can't manage not to drink these.  Black cherries, boysenberries, some black licorice on the palate.  Light to medium tannins.  Good acidity.  Works well on its own or with food.  Nice finish.  Some upside potential to improve with age for a couple of years.  

2008 Kapcsándy Family Winery Estate Cuvée State Lane Vineyard, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

This is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cab Franc.  Just a gorgeous wine that while still youthful, is showing some maturity.  We drank this pop and pour but I would recommend a lot more air or decant.  Purple in color.  The nose is great with cassis, black cherries, tobacco, slight leather, and spice.  Wonderful rich texture.  Great balance.  Medium tannins.  Plenty of fruit; cassis and black cherries layered with earth and tobacco.  Long finish.  This wine has a nice complexity that shows itself as it unwinds in the glass.  Its delicious but more than just that.  While it shows

2016 Saved Magic Maker Rose, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

This was consumed with a couple of my neighbors outside by the fire on a late Spring Day.  It was quite well received.  It is a blend of  Grenache, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, and Sangiovese.  First, the bottle is very pretty with a silk screened label.  The wine itself is likewise pretty with an almost iridescent salmon orange color to it.  The nose is large with burnt oranges, some strawberries and slight cherries.  There is some alcohol on the nose too.  On the palate, this has a very nice texture.  Big fruit, mostly tart cherries.  Enough acidity to work with food but made just fine sip

2007 Dehlinger Syrah Goldridge, USA, California, Sonoma, Russian River Valley, Wine Review

Purple in color.  The nose is nice with black pepper, black raspberries, slight roasted herbs, and some bacon fat.  Full bodied.  Cooler climate in style.  On the palate, boysenberries, black pepper, slight earthiness with good acidity.  Slight tannins.  deep and layered.  Good balance.  Nice finish.  This went very well with Indian food (Syrah is a surprisingly good food match with Indian food).  Seems to be still on the younger side of peak though drinking well now.  

2008 Carlisle Two Acres, USA, California, Sonoma, Russian River Valley

This is a field blend of mostly Rhone varietals and some Petite Sirah.  The Petite Sirah seems to take over more and more as this wine ages.  Purple in color.  The nose has boysenberries, plums, char and some roasted herbs.  On the palate, this has boysenberries, some black cherries and spice.  Nice medium bodied mouth feel.  some complexity.  Slight tannins.  Good finish.  Probably at peak now, but no hurry at all on this.  

2014 Tablas Creek Esprit de Tablas, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

I love it when I can find an affordable great wine in a 375ml format.  These are (sometimes) available directly from the Tablas Creek web site.  While this wine is still young, it makes a nice glass or two (or three) while waiting for the full bottles to develop.  Great for the times you just want a bit of wine.  40% Mourvèdre, 35% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 5% Counoise.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is really nice with dark cherries, black raspberries, some black pepper.  Nice sensuous texture.  Great fruit.  This has depth but it is quite primary right now.  Delicious, but wil

2013 Carlisle Zinfandel Carlisle Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Russian River Valley, Wine Review

I try to let some of my Carlisle wines age.  Really, I do.  This is about as successful as I get.  They are just so good young.  This one was consumed at age 5.  Purple in color.  The nose has black cherries, some raspberries, a bit of black licorice and char.  On the palate, a really luxurious texture.  Delicious.  Black cherries, some black licorice and char.  Great balance.  Long finish.  Great on its own or with food.  Great wine.  

2014 Freemark Abbey Chardonnay Napa Valley, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

I really enjoyed this wine.  A long time Napa standard, it had been a while since I had revisited it.  Light golden in color.  The nose has melons and red apples.  Very clean, little oak and no butter.  On the palate, this is crisp and refreshing.  Some apples, some melon with a nice mouthfeel.  Food friendly.  Under $30.  Really a nice value in Napa Chardonnay.