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2018 HILLSIDE HOUSE SUNSET SOIRÉE WITH JIM CLENDENEN OF AU BON CLIMAT

2018 HILLSIDE HOUSE SUNSET SOIRÉE WITH JIM CLENDENEN OF AU BON CLIMAT   The annual Hillside House Sunset Soirée fundraising dinner was held June 9, 2018 at the historic El Mirador Estate in Montecito, CA (to read an article about the event click here ). It was a great success in all respects. The fundraiser was […]

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IS IT ROSÉ TIME?

  Spring has arrived. And the new vintage 2017 rosés are starting to appear on the market. So with the normal fanfare merchants are now heralding the “It’s Rosé Time” chant. That’s all well and good.   But, it was not all that many years ago that Americans paid little attention to rosé. Oh yes, […]

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DOMAINE BALLOT-MILLOT – HISTORY, OLDER WINES & THE 2015 VINTAGE, AND TASTING NOTES ON THE 2015S

    HISTORY Below is what I said about this Domaine in my first article posted in February 2010: Even a lot of very serious White Burgundy fans may have never heard of this producer. I first became acquainted with the wines in the late 1970s and early 1980s.  In those days, the wines were […]

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BIEN NACIDO ESTATE AND SOLOMON HILLS ESTATE

  Beginning in 2005 the Miller family, owners of Bien Nacido Vineyard and Solomon Hills Vineyard, began to make a small amount of wine under their label. Owners of Bien Nacido Vineyards since 1969, this vineyard has been the source of many great wines made by early wineries like Au Bon Climat, Qupé, and Bonny […]

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A VISIT TO TYLER WINERY

  Recently, I paid a visit to Tyler Winery in Lompoc, CA to taste the 2014 Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs with Justin Willet, the owner and winemaker. Some of the wines were released for sale in March and the rest will be released for sale in September. If you love Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, the […]

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ALONG THE BURGUNDY TRAIL – VINTAGE 2014

TABLE OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION 2014 BURGUNDY VINTAGE DOMAINES AND NEGOCIANTS VISITED WINES TASTED AND TASTING NOTES 2014 DOMAINE DE LA ROMANÉE-CONTI HARVEST REPORT RECENT VINTAGES (2013 – 2007) HOW BURGUNDY IS TASTED FROM BARREL A SIMPLE EXPLANATION OF BURGUNDY INTRODUCTION   I first started going to Burgundy to taste wines from barrel in 1981. Since […]

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SANTA CRUZ MOUNTAIN VINEYARD AND QUINTA CRUZ

 A Great Under The Radar Twoofer My history here goes back a long time. This is a small under the radar winery that consistently makes first rate wines at affordable prices. Here is the introduction to the history of these wines from my first article (to read that article click here). This is the story […]

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RIDGE VINEYARDS & THE DROUGHT YEARS 2012-2015

  A RECENT VISIT AND SOME REALLY STUNNING WINES I have been visiting Ridge Vineyards since the 60s and writing about them since just before the launch of  The Underground Wineletter in 1979. During this entire period I have been buying, cellaring, and drinking Ridge Vineyards wines. They have always given me immense pleasure and […]

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BONNY DOON VINEYARD: A PIONEER PRODUCER WHERE OLD IS NEW

  INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND & TASTING NOTES Introduction and Background Randall Grahm is the Bonny Doon Vineyard founder and winemaker. My long time good friend, wine buddy and Underground Associate Editor, Ed Lazarus, introduced me to Randall in the 1970s. Randall was searching for property to plant Pinot Noir in the Santa Cruz Mountains and […]

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VISIT TO CALERA & NEW AND OLD WINES

  Recently I visited Calera to taste the 2013 Pinot Noirs nearly all of which were bottled. Earlier I tasted them out of barrel (to see that article click here). While there I also tasted the 2014s out of barrel. I visited with Josh Jensen, the founder, and Mike Waller, the winemaker (to read more […]

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