wine tasting

Domestic Selection: Chardonnay, 1987, Chateau Julien

In the short span of 6 years that this winery has been in exis­tence, it has made a name for itself internationally. The awards and medals list is impressive from competitions in San Francisco to London. But, that is not why I se­lect a wine. It has to win our award!… by its taste and… read more »

Cabernet Sauvignon, 1983, Cache Cellars

Caché means “hidden” in French… and I guess it is as good a name as any for this winery. It is located on a remote dirt road west of Davis, California. A great place to be! University of California-Davis has the best enology depart­ment in the country. The cellars were established in 1978, by Charles… read more »

Domestic Selection: Sauvignon Blanc, 1985, Sam J. Sebastiani Winery

A new California winery with an old name appeared on the horizon in 1986. This is not the giant Sebastiani Vineyards in Sonoma of jug wine fame! (and some occasional premi­um wines worth considering). This is Sam J., the grandson of the foun­der, who has struck out for himself. Sam was raised with wine. He… read more »

Domestic: Sauvignon Blanc, 1985, Sam J. Sebastini Winery

A new California winery with an old name appeared on the horizon in 1986. This is not the giant Sebastiani Vineyards in Sonoma of jug wine fame! (and some occasional premi­um wines worth considering). This is Sam J., the grandson of the foun­der, who has struck out for himself. Sam was raised with wine. He… read more »

Domestic Selection: Zinfandel, Vineyard Selection 1978, L. M. Martini

One day in 1906, a nineteen-year-old Enology student from the University of Genoa got a bit of advice from his college professor that would change his Life, “If you want to make wine,” he said, “you’d better go back to California. . .experiment by yourself and study.” His name was Louis M. Martini. The story… read more »

Import Selection: Shiraz/Cabernet, 1984, Penfolds

Terms like Koonunga Hill, Coonawarra and Pokolbin most-likely don’t roll off the tongues of wine aficionados like Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino, but someday they will.  Our import selection, if you haven’t already guessed, comes from “down under”. . . Australia. With all the hoopla over the Australian tourist ads here it was time to find… read more »

Domestic Selection: Semillon, 1985, Alderbrook

••CORRECTION: I reported in a previous article that the two grapes in white Bordeaux were semillon and sauvignon blanc. I erroneously noted that the sauvignon blanc adds the flavor and body while the semillon contributes the acid. OOPS! It’s the other way around.. . Oh well, you’re never too old to learn or too young to… read more »

Adventures in Eating: Texas Style Fajita Sauce

How, when, and where, the name and the food we call Fajita got its start, is unknown to me. Even some verbal re­search in Mexican restaurants unearthed… nada. To further complicate the matter, I learned that a Fajita in Texas is different than what we call a Fajita in California. Nevertheless, we now can order… read more »

Adventures in Eating: Main Course Vegetable

A hundred years ago, the French gas­tronomer Brillat-Savarin, wrote exten­sively on the experience of tasting . “It is no easy matter to determine the precise nature of the organ of taste. It is more complicated than would appear at first sight. Clearly, the tongue plays a large part in the mechanism of degustation; for, endowed… read more »

Bouquet vs Aroma

“Paul: You keep using “bouquet” and “aroma” at different times in your wine descriptions, and some­times you use both terms for the same wine. I must assume there is a difference. What is the differ­ence?” – H.S. San Jose; CA You assumed right! There is a difference. Both terms pertain to the smell or the… read more »