Posts Filed Under crowd pleaser wines

Wine in the Time of Coronavirus, Part 4 (Legendary Zinfandel Vineyards)

Vinted on June 25, 2020 binned in crowd pleaser wines, elegant wines, sexy wines, wine review

Zinfandel 2020 tasting

Virtual (a.k.a., remote) tastings have been a thing for several years (hell, I was involved in some of the very first… daaaaannnng, remember those?!?), but they’ve positively (and virtually/figuratively) exploded during this time of SIP sipping.

This has been a welcome surprise and a needed respite, since some of us (myself included) are unable to hit the road at the moment, due to a combination of factors (one of which, of course, is not wanting to unnecessarily tussle with a global pandemic when one has regular contact with high-risk loved ones).

This latest dip into SIP (Sipping In Place?) comes courtesy of my friend Robert Larsen, who organized a tasting themed on some of legendary Zinfandel vineyards of California. My thoughts on each liquid entrant are below. As always, Robert provided an educational, entertaining, and high-octane good time, even if we all couldn’t actually clink glasses together IRL (where possible, I have included the words of the folks representing each brand to provide some context on why the vineyards are special)…

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Wine in the Time of Coronavirus, Part Three (Through the Wayback Machine with Hesperian Wines)

Vinted on May 21, 2020 binned in crowd pleaser wines, elegant wines, kick-ass wines, wine review

Hesperian Cabernet 2007

In this edition of our sipping during the time of SIP (Samples In Progress, during Shelter In Place), we’re setting the Wayback machine for 2004, 2007, 2010, and 2016, as we go back in time and into the samples pool with Napa Valley’s perennially misunderstood Hesperian Wines.

I was provided this in-home vertical tasting opportunity because Hesperian had been following my lockdown advice for wineries even before I made it, offering specials/discounts on direct sales of their library wines to loyal customers.

Hesperian is the labor of love of Philippe Langner, who turned his love of wine into a stint at Château Clarke in Bordeaux, and then turned that experience towards winegrowing primarily in the Kitoko Vineyard on Napa Valley’s Atlas Peak. For just over fifteen years, Langner has been gaining some devoted fans while simultaneously sometimes pissing off wine critics with his small-batch (typically under 300 cases) production of premium Cab.

Did he piss off this critic? Well… read on…

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Wine in the Time of Coronavirus, Part II (Alma de Cattleya & Lucia Recent Releases)

Vinted on April 30, 2020 binned in crowd pleaser wines, kick-ass wines, sexy wines, Uncategorized, wine review

2020 Zoom 1

Gotta love the modern wine biz. Despite our penchant for socialization being tampered down by the (entirely reasonable) shelter-in-place orders (courtesy of our current global pandemic), we always manage to find a way to not have to always drink alone!

Last week, I was part of a cast of online wine peep characters taking part in a live tasting of new releases from Alma de Cattleya and Lucia wines, who happen to be made by Bibiana González Rave and Jeff Pisoni, respectively, who also happened to join us for the virtual tasting, and who also happen to be married to one another in a modern embodiment of a winemaking power couple scenario. As González Rave told us regarding their relationship, “We both are a little bit perfectionist, so we always have criticisms during the process, especially when we blend. I love to share my blend trials with Jeff, always blind, to hear his opinion. We are lucky to have each other for sure.”

Of said power couple, González Rave’s backstory is the more compelling, which is not an attempt to throw any shade at Pisoni, because her backstory is the more compelling when compared to almost anyone else’s in California wine at the moment. I’ll let her tell it as she tweeted it to us:

“I was born and raised in Medellin [Columbia]. Really during the worse times of Drug cartels and Guerrillas…. But I was so fortunate to still be able to dream and have quite a normal life. Since I was 14 years old I started to say that I wanted to make wine. I was fascinated by wine, the meaning of it, the history that comes with [it]. I just remember so much that year, and telling my teachers and parents about my dream. I obviously didn’t know anything about wine, neither that wine comes from farming, and that farming will frame my life.”

See? Told ya…

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Shidoobee, Scattered, Scattered (Scattered Peaks Recent Releases)

Vinted on April 9, 2020 binned in crowd pleaser wines, kick-ass wines, wine review

2017 Scattered Peaks

Hey, remember when we used to go out and stuff? Man, that was awesome.

I used to do that. Way, way, waaaaaaaay back in March. Like that time that I caught up with Robert Larson and Joel Aiken at Philly’s Parc to taste through Joel’s new winemaking project, Scattered Peaks. Back when we could travel, and restaurants were open and stuff. Before we spent entire days inside in our PJs.

Damn. Good times.

In some ways, its seems like yesterday, or only about a month ago. In other ways, it feels like 6,422 years ago.

Whatever. Let’s talk about wine, jumping out of airplanes, surfing, and high-end Rutherford vino from a not-so-bygone era…

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