Murrieta’s Well Merlot 2015

Murrieta's Well Merlot

The dark rich color and big nose of cocoa and black cherries starts you off. Smoky blackberries, dried French herbs, red curry and toasty oak flavors. A pleasant pop of acidity as you swish the wine around in your mouth. It’s rich, well built, gentle tannins, loads of flavor. Drink it with a roast pork […]

LINGUA FRANCA Pinot Noir “Avni” 2016

Lingua Franca Pinot Noir Avni

Dark wild cherries, dried red rose petals, mincemeat and truffle introduce you to this “entry level” Pinot Noir from Master Sommelier-turned-vintner Larry Stone. The taste continues on the flavors above along with dark plums and a background earthy/rocky flavor that defines its Pinot Noir-ness. Excellent balance of ripe fruit, invigorating acidity and mouth-filling texture. Drinking […]

LINGUA FRANCA Chardonnay “Bunker Hill” 2016

Lingua Franca Chardonnay Bunker Hill

Bright, rich and substantial. Smell and taste lemon-honey, Macintosh apples, grapefruit, lime, pineapple, fresh pie crust and hazelnut. The crisp citrus and orchard fruits burst out in the mouth along with bits of buttercream, brine and chalk. This is intense and full-bodied while at the same time being impressively “fit.” While giving due respects to […]

SKINNER Rosé 2017

Skinner Rose

47% Grenache, 23% Mourvedre, 16% Counoise, 14% Cinsault. A Rhone-style “purposeful” Rosé from El Dorado/Sierra Foothills. I like the subtle yet obvious smells and flavors of fresh peaches, strawberries, black pepper, orange fleshed melon and orange zest. Very pleasing. What truly sets this Rosé apart from the masses is its round texture, ideal acidity and […]

PLANET OREGON Pinot Noir 2016

Planet Oregon Pinot Noir

Deep, rich color (especially for a value-priced Willamette Vallley Pinot Noir). Ripe, slightly liqueur-like dark cherry flavors with support of cinnamon stick, rosewater and cola. Has polished tannins (i.e. smooth!), making for a nicely rip, silky finish. There is lots and lots of pleasure here! Noting the AVA on the bottle is Oregon, the 2016 […]

LUCY Rose of Pinot Noir 2017

Lucy Rose 17

A more broad-shouldered, concentrated Rose by most definitions, the Lucy Rose of Pinot Noir smells and tastes of red rose petals, red plums and cherries, Indian spice, peach pit and cranberry. It’s all saignee (bled off juice thereby concentrating the resulting Pinot Noir) from “Pisoni Vineyard.” I like how its slight bitterness and concentration will […]

WILSON FOREIGNER Valdiguie 16

wilson foreigner valdiguie

Second vintage for this tiny Napa winery owned/made by two families (see below for details). The grapes are from David & Christine Wilson’s family vineyard, “Rancho Chimiles,” Wooden Valley, southeast Napa’s Valley. A popular grape to grow in Napa in the 20th century, this 2 acre plot of Valdiguie is some of the last standing […]