wine tasting

This Matter of the Color of Wine

Your first introduction to a wine is through the sense of sight. The appearance and color of a wine tells you, or warns you, about what’s coming. The first question we ask: “Is it clear?” Cloudy wines are undesirable. These wines could have several different problems; leftover sugar combining with yeast for a secondary fermentation,… read more »

Import Selection: Cotes du Ventoux, 1990. Jaboulet Aine

“I do not think that Gerard Ja­boulet has ever made greater wine than he has in 1990…a new quali­ty threshold has been attained…” Robert Parker Jr. When we tasted this wine, we had to agree. Paul Jaboulet Aine is another family owned winery. They have achieved the dual distinction of be­ing not only one of… read more »

Domestic Selection: Chardonnay, 1990. Maddalena

If you were to try and imagine the most irregular, most unnatural, most intriguing location for a win­ery, would you choose downtown Los Angeles? No, seriously, I mean downtown Los Angeles! In 1917, when Santo Cambiani­ca came from Padua Italy, winemaking in Los Angeles was truly in its infancy. He opened this win­ery and named… read more »

Member Inquiry: When is Wine at its Best?

“Paul, In the newsletters it says things like, Will complex over the next two years.’ How can I tell when a wine will be at its best? M.N., North Hollywood, CA As many factors are involved, this is a complex issue (no pun in­tended). Unfortunately, the main factor, is experience, and that you must gain… read more »

Import Selection: Blanc de Blanc, 1990. Domaine de Felines

When, between 1976 and 1984 the authorities of the Languedoc wine growing regions of France set out to change their image, the Herault district was one of the first to accept the challenge. Long known as France’s “wine reservoir”, the Languedoc needed a new image. The district of He­rault uprooted 74,000 acres of vineyard to… read more »

Import Selection: Tempranillo, 1988. Juame Serra

In the year 1647, on top of a hill that slopes down to the Medi­terranean, in what is now the prov­ince of Cataluna (Catalonia) in Spain, someone constructed a farmhouse in the likeness of a mediaeval fortress. Two hundred years later, this imposing property became a winery, Las Cavas Jaume Serra. Surrounding the cavas (caves… read more »

Import Selection: Chianti, 1990. Melini Borghi D’Elsa

Founded in 1705, the Melini winery owns 225 acres of vine­yards in Tuscany, home to many of Italy’s finest red wines. Melini stands as one of the top four pro­ducers in the renowned Chianti re­gion there. This wine gets its name for the villages (borghi) along the River Elsa and comes from their modern facility… read more »

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 »

Import Selection: Late Harvest Semillon, 1987. Penfolds

About 150 years ago, Dr. Christopher Penfold left England with his wife Mary to settle in South Australia. They built a whitewashed stone cottage in Ma­gill, four miles from Adelaide, and named it after Mary’s home in England, “The Grange”. The doc­tor had brought with him some wax-sealed grape-vine cuttings. He planted these over the… 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 »

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