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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

California Wine Show: media pre-view

The Time and Date: Tuesday, March 1, 2011 4 Pm to 7 PM
The Event: Media pre-view of the California Wine Fair (April 4, 2011,
Royal York)
The Venue: Far Niente
The Target Audience: wine media
The Availability/Catalogue: most wines are or will be available through
the LCBO, Vintages, Consignment, or by private order. All of these
wines are supposed to be at the show on April 4.
The Quote/Background: In previous years, we – as wine writers – were
challenged by a single-blind tasting (we knew the grape variety but not
the label). This helped to focus our attention on the wine at hand.
This time, we had the bottle in hand and could float around from table
to table.
The Wines: I tasted most wines…
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Duckhorn Merlot 2008 Napa, $56.95 Vintages
-Michael David Winery Petite Syrah/Petit Verdot 2008 Lodi, Dionysus
-Wente Chardonnay 2009 Riva Ranch Monterey, $19.99 from Churchill
-Trinchero Family Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Cellars 2008, $24.95 Vintages
July 2011
-Eberle Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Paso Robles, $24.95 Vintages May 28
-Freemark Abbey Cabernet Sauvignon 2002 Napa, $33.95 from B & W
-Bennett Lane Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2006 Napa, $55 from Mondia
-Paul Dolan Deep Red Biodynamic Mendocino 2008, Calibrium
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Francis Ford Coppola Winery Diamond Syrah-Shiraz 2008, $24.95 Vintages
-Kenneth Volk Chardonnay 2007 Santa Maria, $19.95 from Grape
-Sonoma Cutrer Chardonnay 2009 Russian River Ranches, $24.95 Vintages
-Cuvaison Chardonnay 2009 Napa, $27.95 from Prevedello & Mathews
-Kendall-Jackson Jackson Hills Chardonnay 2008 Santa Barbara, $34.95
-Lucas & Lewellen Pinot Noir 2008 Goodchild High 9 Vineyard Santa
Barbara, $20.95 from Schiralli
-Gloria Ferrer Pinot Noir 2006 Carneros, $26.95 Vintages
-Siduri Pinot Noir 2009 Russian River, $39.95 Vintages Aug 6
-Galante Almond Flat Pinot Noir Carmel Valley 2006, $47.35 Le Sommelier
-La Crema Pinot Noir 2009 Russian River, $29.95 from B & W
-Cline Cellars Big Break Zinfandel 2008 Contra Costa County, Vinexx
-Pedroncelli Zinfandel Mother Clone 2008 Dry Creek Valley, Grape
-Sterling Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Napa, $24.95 Vintages
-Anders-Lane Artisan Waterstone Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 Napa, $33.85
Small Winemakers.
-Emblem Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 Oso Vyd Napa, $47.99 from Mark Anthony
-Cuvaison Brandin Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Napa, $85.95 Vintages Sept 3
-Darioush Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Napa, $110.95 from B & W
-Heitz Wine Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Martha's Vineyard 2005 Napa,
$220 Lifford
-Vineyard 7 & 8 Spring Mountain District Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Napa
-Chimney Rock Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 SLD Napa, Mark Anthony
-Hess Collection 19 Block Cuvee 2007 Napa, $58.95 Vintages Apr 2
-Miner Family The Oracle 2008 Napa, $74.95 Profile
-Dry Creek Vineyard Mariner Meritage 2006 Dry Creek Valley, Vinexx
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Foppiano Vineyards Petite Sirah 2008 Russian River, $24.95 Vintages
Fall 2011
-Lockwood Vineyards Chardonnay 2009 Monterey, $15.75 from Ruby Wine
-Irony Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 Napa, $19.95 Vintages July
-Merryvale Starmont Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Napa, $21.99 from Profile
-Peju Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 Napa, $65 Vintages
-Villa Mount Eden Cabernet Sauvignon Grand Reserve 2006 Napa, Profile
The Food: great appetizers – cheese, breads, charcuterie, mushrooms,
other finger foods.
The Downside: I really miss the single-blind aspect. Perhaps it will be
back next year? One suggestion: number the bottle and let me pour my
own from the back label.
The Upside: things and events this evening went faster than in previous
The Contact Person:
The Marketing Effectiveness of this Event (numerical grade): 88.

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