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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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DIAMOND CREEK VINEYARDS

 History And Notes On Stunning New Wines Founded in 1968, Diamond Creek is California’s first exclusively Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Vineyard. The first vintage was 1972. Visionary pioneer Al Brounstein defied conventions and planted Bordeaux varietals on secluded Diamond Mountain. Four separate vineyards – Volcanic Hill, Red Rock Terrace, Gravelly Meadow, and Lake – produce a […]

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TYLER WINERY

Tyler winery was founded by Justin Willett in 2005. Since that time the wines have been consistently great. The philosophy is simple and straightforward.  Here is how Justin states it: Tyler is dedicated to producing wines of delicacy and balance, where structure and nuance are favored above all else. Tyler is dedicated to producing wines […]

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MARIETTA CELLARS

Consistently Wonderful Red Wines At Great Prices & A Great American Success Story! In a world of many over-hyped, over extracted, and over-priced California red wines, there are a few exceptions that stand out like beacons on a foggy night. One is Marietta Cellars. The history of Marietta Cellars goes back nearly 40 years. It […]

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CHANIN WINE COMPANY & LUTUM WINES

   Background and History In 2011 I first tasted Chanin Wine Company wines from 2008 and 2009 as well as some barrel samples of 2010s. In September 2011, my first article on Chanin Wine Company also featured Au Bon Climat and Qupé and was entitled The Holy Trinity of Wineries (to read the article click […]

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MASSICAN WINERY

Massican is a very small winery in Calistoga that was founded by owner and winemaker Dan Petroski in 2009. The grapes are sourced mostly in Napa Valley and production is limited to white wines with current annual production around 1200 cases. The wines are available from the winery (with a release date each April) and […]

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DOMAINE BALLOT MILLOT

    After a lapse of many years, I became acquainted with the wines from this domaine beginning with the 2006 vintage. Since that time I have bought them regularly and drink them often. They are consistently excellent. Here is background information from previous articles: Even a lot of very serious White Burgundy fans may […]

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