Wine Education

Domestic Selection: Fume Blanc, 1990. Haywood

After about twenty years in the construction industry, Peter Hay-wood’s tolerance for night meet­ings had waned. He longed to “get back to the land”. So, he un­dertook a search for the perfect vineyard. In 1973 he located, in Sonoma County, a valley of great potential, covered with oaks and brush. He judged, from the harsh­ness… read more »

This Matter of California Wine Labels

Wine labels are an interesting phenomenon. There are two forces governing them. First, there’s the marketing arm of the winery which, hopefully, is in tune with what the consumer wants and gives it to them. Secondly, there is the government, better known as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (BATF). These two are frequently… read more »

Import Selection: Riesling, 1989. Roemische Weinstrasse

Roemische Weinstrasse is the region which surrounds the oldest city in Germany, Trier. In the year 70 A.D., in the battle of Rigodo­lum, the Roman legion successful­ly conquered the Germanic tribe, Treverer. The name “Roemische Weinstrasse” means “Roman wine route” and even today vivid evi­dence of the era is visible through­out this Mosel River district… read more »

Domestic Selection: Mourvedre, 1988. Francal

If you have been with us for about a year, you will remember Cask One Sauvignon Blanc (#291A). Well, the same people who make Cask One make Fran-cal. There is, in fact, no Francal Winery or Cask One Winery (or Plume Ridge Winery, for that mat­ter, recalling last month’s Char­donnay, #291A…different produc­er, though). To make… read more »

This Matter of Table Wines

“I have been with the Wine of the Month Club for three years…in the past year I have noticed more ‘table wines’…I belong to the club to try new wines and wineries. Not table wines that I have little control of their contents and would be unable to compare vintages”. F.C., Santee This is an… read more »

Import Selection: Cabernet Sauvignon, 1989. Villa Montes

What would happen if: a) Cali­fornia’s leading Consulting Oenol­ogist, Andre Tchelistcheff, formed a partnership with; b) the Dean of the School of Economics and Business Administration of a prominent university plus; c) a ma­jor Napa Valley vineyard owner and; d) a seasoned wine marketing professional with 20 years experi­ence? They call it Domaine Tche­listcheff. One… read more »

Domestic Selection: Chardonnay, 1989. Plume Ridge

With a degree in business from California State University, Los Angeles, Christina Coulourides went to work for one of the largest specialty wine retail chains in the world. She acquired a thorough, top-to-bottom understanding of the wine business. Then, in 1981, she began working for one of Califor­nia’s finest “old guard” restau­rants, selecting wines for… read more »

This Matter of Vintage Charts

We’ve often had people come up to us and point to the vintage chart hand-outs that we offer to the general public: They ask in wide-eyed bewilderment, “What is this?” Basically, vintage charts score the success of the vintage, as far as the quality of the wine goes. The charts are universally tabular in form,… read more »

Import Selection: Marsanne, 1990. Reserve St. Martin

Les Vignerons du Val d’Orbieu is an association of shareholders formed in 1967. The Group’s members are all wine producers in the French Languedoc region. This vast wine growing area in the south of France, known as the Midi, is to French wine what the American Midwest wheat belt is to grain: it produces virtually… read more »

Domestic Selection: Pinot Noir, 1987. Peacock Hill

Things certainly are looking good for us WOMC enthusiasts in 1992! I would never have imag­ined that Paul could find two love­ly Pinot Noirs within such a short period of time (seven months), es­pecially considering the price class of most Pinot Noirs. The last one was Tony Austin’s 1988 (#691A) sent last June. That was… read more »