Modern Wines of Place?

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A common criticism of “modern” wines is that they are over extracted, oaky and jammy. We also hear that modern wines don’t express terroir, they are an expression of the winemaker’s hands in the cellar. I’ve always felt that I have a more classically leaning palate, that I prefer wines that are not too big … Continue reading Modern Wines of Place?

Paying Homage to My Personal Favorite Female Winemakers

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I have always felt that wine is an illuminating lens into the history of a place and a people. Similarly, wine is in many ways a social commentary. There is certainly class stratification within wine, whether those “in the business” actually acknowledge it or not. Within the world of wine, there are also issues of … Continue reading Paying Homage to My Personal Favorite Female Winemakers

Some Ugly Truths About Wine Travel

I have been fortunate enough to visit a number of wine regions in the U.S. and Europe. Those experiences were incredibly instructive and memorable, but there have been instances where I have left a winery or a region and felt disappointed. Now, don’t get me wrong, it is far more the exception than a rule … Continue reading Some Ugly Truths About Wine Travel

Cellar Favorite: 1986 Castellare di Castellina Chianti Classico

The Castellare Tasting Room Last year on a trip through Tuscany, I was able to walk-in for a tasting at Castellare di Castellina. I had done some research in advance and knew that they offered walk-in tastings (during their business hours) of their current line-up, no appointment needed. I was sure to leave time to … Continue reading Cellar Favorite: 1986 Castellare di Castellina Chianti Classico

Tasting Note: 2013 Serafino Rivella Barbaresco Montestefano

Wine criticism is hardly a science. To what extent can anyone actually taste a wine from barrel, something that was just bottled or just released, and know what its future will be? Fortune-telling how a wine will evolve in 5, 10, or 20 years is something that can come with experience of tasting the same … Continue reading Tasting Note: 2013 Serafino Rivella Barbaresco Montestefano

Cellar Favorite: That’s Amore! 1987 Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino

I make no secret for my affinity of Italian wine, Tuscan wines, and in particular those of Biondi-Santi. My early experiences with wine were my family's homemade concoctions that were passed off as red wine, and a bottle of 2010 Biondi-Santi Rosso di Montalcino changed everything for me. I now seek out older, back vintage bottles … Continue reading Cellar Favorite: That’s Amore! 1987 Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino

Tasting Note: 2011 Il Marroneto Brunello di Montalcino

This was brick colored in the glass, with the slightest fade to red/orange at the edge of the bowl. A nose of intense cherry, combined with roses, cooking spices and hints of smoked meat. Plenty of acid, with rich tannins and medium length. There was definitely some evolution over a few hours and could still … Continue reading Tasting Note: 2011 Il Marroneto Brunello di Montalcino

Elevated Rosso

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The Fortezza of Montalcino The Le Ragnaie estate is located in the hills outside the village of Montalcino. Situated within the rolling hills and forests, the farmhouse is perfectly picturesque. The vineyards located on the property are some of the highest in the entire Montalcino zone, reaching over 600 meters at the highest point. That … Continue reading Elevated Rosso