california wine

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 »

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 »

Domestic Selection: Midnight Cuvee, 1988. Van Der Kamp

Martin Van der Kamp, a native of the North Coast wine country, was a home winemaker there for many years. In his youth he had done a stint as an employee at Napa’s famous Schramsberg Champagne Cellars. Bitten by the bug, he took several trips to some of the top Champagne houses in France. It… read more »

Domestic Selection: Colombard, 1989. Carmenet

In opening, let me first ask you to notice the small print section of this wine’s label which reads “A Chalone Property”. Any discus­sion of the Carmenet Vineyard must include a discourse on its parent company. Chalone Incor­porated is the only publicly-held company in the U.S. whose prin­cipal business is producing and marketing premium wines…. read more »

Domestic Selection: Zinfandel, 1988. Glenn Ellen

The Benziger family moved to Glen Ellen California in 1980 from White Plains, New York to set up a boutique winery. The rest is truly California wine making history. The 1981 crush came before construction of the winery was fin­ished. There was no electricity. There were no wine storage tanks. The crush went on through… read more »

Domestic Selection: Charbono, 1979. Inglenook-Napa Valley

Note: Please do not confuse the wine maker Inglenook-Napa Valley with the jug wine maker Inglenook-Navale. Founded in 1879, the Ingle­nook-Napa Valley winery was the hobby of the great seaman Gustave Niebaum. Not only a diligent student, re­ceiving his ships papers by attend­ing merchant marine school in Fin­land, he was a brilliant businessman. At age… read more »

Domestic Selection: Old Vine Red Lot #9, NV. Marietta

We knew there was something special about this wine the first time we tasted it. It seemed to want to be our friend. We have watched it for many years and have continually been impressed. There was something very warm and loving about this wine. Now we know why. Marietta Cellars was founded in 1979… read more »

Temperature Control for Various Wines

“Dear Paul & Rosemarie, I know that to fully appreciate a wine it must be served at the proper temperature. What are the temperatures for the various types of wine, and how can you tell when the bottle has reached that temperature? They say that reds should be served at room temperature, but in California… read more »

Wine of the Month Club – Interview with Morgan Twain-Peterson

Paul:                      Welcome to the Wine of the Month Club continuing winemakers series.  It’s a pleasure to have Morgan Twain-Peterson here from Bedrock Wines.  And I know we have some family history in the wine business. Morgan:               Yeah. Paul:                      That would be..? Morgan:               My father who founded the Ravenswood Winery back in 1976 was Joel Peterson…. read more »

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