Kim Crawford Pinot Noir 2009

I first heard about Kim Crawford a few years ago while I was working at Alphabet City Wine Co. in New York when a few women came in looking for the sauvignon blanc. We didn’t carry it, but I made a mental note to find and try it. Well now I see ads for it everywhere, and it’s no wonder; the wine is imported by the behemoth wine company Constellation Wines from Marlborough, New Zealand. I found it, tasted and enjoyed it, and moved on.

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Pascal Pibaleau “La Perlette” Sparkling Grolleau NV

Don’t be fooled like I was – that dark-colored bottle is clear, showing the rich, raspberry color of the wine itself. 100% Grolleau, an almost extinct deep red grape from the Loire, this red wine is classically vinified as a rosé; winemaker Pascal Pibaleau has crafted a lovely sparkling red in the frizzante (slightly fizzy) style. Continue reading

A Different Kind of Vet: Franciscan Winery’s Chef

franciscan-cory-strikeI spent Veterans’ Day at Franciscan Winery in Napa Valley in the company of winemaker Janet Myers and chef Cory Strike. Both have been at the winery for several years, 8 and 10 years respectively, but Strike turned out to be a more traditional kind of vet as well: he took leave in 2004 and volunteered to spend four years in Iraq, running the kitchen for the US Army, serving over 22,000 meals each day. We tasted a little more refined version of his cooking over lunch, alongside three beautiful wines—the 2009 Franciscan Cuvée Sauvage reserve Chardonnay, the 2006 Franciscan Magnificat Cabernet Sauvignon, and the 2004 Mount Veeder Reserve Meritage blend. An excellent way to toast him and all those who have served.

SIMI: A Long History of American Winemaking

135 years is a long time, especially in US wine history, but that’s how long Simi winery in Sonoma, CA has been producing wine. In fact, Simi was making wine even through the years of Prohibition as an authorized producer of sacramental wine.

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