Category Archives: California

RECOMMENDED SUMMER WINES: The White Knight

A division of The Other Guys wine group (Sebastiani family), The White Knight brand’s motto is “Saving the world from the tyranny of Chardonnay!” Cute. After their initial offering of an impressive Viognier, the Knights have expanded into Riesling, Moscato, … Continue reading

Posted in California, Chardonnay, Moscato/Muscat, Pinot Grigio (Pinot Gris), Riesling, Viognier | Leave a comment

RECOMMENDED/HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: Madroña Riesling

2010 Madroña Riesling. El Dorado. 13.5% ABV. About $14. Pretty color; soft gold. Gentle nose; green apple and citrus. Honeysuckle, “petrol,” a hint of yeast, and minerals on the palate. Soft, round, and slightly creamy; gentle acidity. I would pair … Continue reading

Posted in California, Riesling | Leave a comment

New Branding: Pennywise (and an excellent Cabernet Sauvignon)

I don’t normally pay much attention to labels. (Kind of a contradiction, as I’m an artist and publication designer/editor.) However, the Pennywise redesign caught my attention in a big way. The previous Pennywise label was okay. Reminiscent of a postage … Continue reading

Posted in Cabernet Sauvignon, California, Merlot, News, Syrah/Shiraz | 3 Comments

Mother’s Day, Wine, Joy, Life and Death

Happy Mother’s Day. Random thoughts: Why do I always weep when my college-age children leave to go back to college? I’m turning into my mother! My Mom died on 3/3/07. In a strange synchronicity, 3307 was the house number of … Continue reading

Posted in California, Family | Leave a comment

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: Matthew Iaconis 2011 Moscato, Lodi. 11.6% ABV. $11.99.

MAN. This will have to be one of my Wines of the Year. Absolutely fantastic. Roses, roses, and linden — perhaps the most aromatic wine I’ve enjoyed all year, with a taste that lives up to the aroma. A touch … Continue reading

Posted in California, Moscato/Muscat, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

RECOMMENDED: 2010 Cryptic, California red blend. 14.5% ABV, $18 SRT; available for less.

If you haven’t decided on your Halloween wine yet, here’s a quick recommendation: the 2010 Cryptic red blend. It is delicious, inexpensive, and fun, with backwards lettering and scramble puzzles on the label that you must decipher in order to … Continue reading

Posted in Cabernet Sauvignon, California, Petite Sirah, Red Blend, Zinfandel | 2 Comments

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: Klinker Brick 2010 Old Vine Zinfandel, Lodi. 15.8%, $13.95 and up.

My favorite way to try new wines is to go to a wine bar. Generally these are boutique yet friendly establishments that have wines on pour-it-yourself systems (you buy a card and dispense your own samples), as well as a … Continue reading

Posted in California, Restaurants, Tastings, Tips, Zinfandel | 7 Comments

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: 2009 Kendall Jackson Vintner’s Reserve “Summation” red blend (43% Zinfandel, 24% Syrah, 21% Merlot, 5% Grenache, 4% Petite Sirah, 3% Other varietals), California. 13.5% ABV. $17 SRP, usually $13, available for as little as $8.99.

Late last year, I reviewed the 2009 K-J “Summation” white blend and highly recommended it (see http://www.thefrugalwinesnob.com/?p=670). We’ve also enjoyed several bottles of the 2008 “Summation” red blend, which was a “special occasion” everyday house wine for us, if that … Continue reading

Posted in California, Grenache/Garnacha, Merlot, Petite Sirah, Red Blend, Syrah/Shiraz, Zinfandel | 4 Comments

UPDATE: 2010 Plungerhead Zinfandel.

Late last year I enjoyed (understatement) the 2009 Plungerhead Zin (review here). The 2010 is a little different, of course: 94% Zinfandel, 4% Merlot, and 2% Petite Sirah. It started out jammy but settled down very quickly as it opened. … Continue reading

Posted in California, Merlot, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel | Leave a comment

RECOMMENDED: Two from Murrieta’s Well. The Whip, 2011 white blend; The Spur, 2009 red blend. Around $15.

The Murrieta’s Well winery name is based on Old West history: Joaquin Murrieta, a.k.a. “Zorro,” would steal horses from northern California and run them down into Sonoma or Mexico, watering them from the artesian well on the property en route. … Continue reading

Posted in Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, California, Chardonnay, Food, Gewurztraminer, Malbec, Merlot, Orange Muscat, Petit Verdot, Petite Sirah, Red Blend, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Tastings, Viognier, White Blend | 1 Comment