Category Archives: CALIFORNIA

Droning On About Smith-Madrone

Nothing like new friends and new wines to introduce the New Year along with the anticipation of making new enemies over our old opinions on wine, eh? Although I am sure my pal Julie Ann Kodmur will not unpal me … Continue reading

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Repaying The Piper: Napa Vintage, 2011

Sean Piper has been remarkably supportive of my personal amble through the alleys of annoying wine disquisition, and today, it’s payback time. See, in the spirit of a genuine anti-journalist, I operate this column on a purist catechism of quid … Continue reading

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Barefoot: Fizzy Wine For Toe-Jam Barbie

There’s a common misconception among you readers that being a wine writer is nothing but free chicks and playing the guitar on the MTV, but I challenge the most cynical of you to explain to me exactly how hauling a heavy case … Continue reading

Posted in CALIFORNIA | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

The Hoopes Scoop: Elegance In Oakville

I’ll spare you the ‘jumping through hoops’ groaner: No need.  The wine is above such puerile puns, the label notwithstanding. Hoopes Family Vineyard reminds me of one of those prodigy kids who realizes she was born with an extraordinary gift—athletics, … Continue reading

Posted in Cab/Merlot, CALIFORNIA, Napa, Oakville | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Strong Words

Rodney Strong keeps sending me wine and I keep drinking it and enjoying it.  But I don’t keep writing about it, because in my inimitable sense of self-importance, I figure that there are only so many times a year that I … Continue reading

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Real Men Drink Gill. Whilst Wrestling Quiche…

I served a very metrosexual quiche at a dinner party last week, and guess what wine I served alongside it?  A hefty syrah from Michael Gill Cellars in Paso Robles. Now, among wine circles, such an abominable pairing is a faux … Continue reading

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Relax, Wine Business: Kathie Lee Has Arrived

The global wine industry—beleaguered by the recent recession, fickle vintages, lazy retailers, semi-literate historiographers and the idiotic 100-point scoring scale—may be likened to the Frankish army at Anatolia, Wellington’s forces at Waterloo, the 2nd Ox at Pegasus Bridge or Gandalf … Continue reading

Posted in CALIFORNIA, GENERAL, Monterey | Tagged , | 1 Comment