tim fish

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Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Are You a Food-and-Wine Pairing Heretic?

I confess that I sometimes take the rules in vain

Posted: July 17, 2013  By Tim Fish

It's blasphemy, I know, but I don't always drink the perfect wine with my food.

Forget perfect: Sometimes I don't even remotely drink the right wine. This isn't a radical idea for old wine hands, but I think it's worth restating for new wine lovers. The right wine with the right meal remains the ideal, but who lives in an ideal world?

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Taking the Pulse of Vintage 2013

A heat wave has jump-started ripening in what was already an early growing season in California

Posted: July 10, 2013  By Tim Fish

There's one thing you can say about the recent growing seasons in Northern California: They haven't been boring. 2010 was chilly then blazing hot. 2009 and 2011 were soggy. Only 2012 was a dream.

As for 2013, it's too early to tell.

Because of warm weather in late winter and spring, the season began early, with budbreak starting March 1 and bloom unfolding in mid-May. Skies were mostly sunny as summer began, and the season was moving along at a good clip, and then an extended heat wave arrived (with temperatures hovering around 100° F) in late June and continued through the Fourth of July.

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Think Bubbly When Beating the Holiday Heat

With the western U.S. broiling, uncork sparkling wine for July 4th

Posted: July 3, 2013  By Tim Fish

I usually smoke ribs or a brisket or chicken on Independence Day, but that's not going to happen this year. Thanks to the heat, I'll be outside as little as possible. As Woody Allen said, "I don't tan. I stroke." This year I'll grill salmon or something else that's easy and light.

As for the wine, it's bubbly for me. Not only will it go well with the heat and salmon, but also the Fourth is a day of celebration after all, right?

June 30, 2013 Issue  :  Features

Zinfandel's Renaissance

A group of dedicated young winemakers is ready to take California’s quintessential wine from cult status to the big time

Posted: June 30, 2013  By Tim Fish

June 30, 2013 Issue  :  Features

Zinfandel Stars

Fifteen California producers with a track record for quality

Posted: June 30, 2013  By Tim Fish

June 30, 2013 Issue  :  Tasting Reports

A Challenging Year

The 2010 vintage delivers mixed quality, but the best Zinfandels still shine

Posted: June 30, 2013  By Tim Fish

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Wine and Hot Dogs: Let the Fireworks Begin

Time to have fun pairing wine with the traditional Fourth of July spread

Posted: June 26, 2013  By Tim Fish

Nail biting over the wine to drink with Thanksgiving dinner pales next to the challenge of pairing wine with a classic Fourth of July barbecue. That's one reason so many Americans reach for a beer.

I'm something of an anarchist when it comes to food and wine. There's too much fuss put into finding the seamless match in my view. Seamlessness is boring. I prefer a wine that offers a playful contrast and enhances the food or brings out something new.

And face it, if you can't be playful and have fun with food and wine on July 4, then you don't deserve to watch the fireworks.

News & Features  :  Travel Tips

Travel Tip: Mendocino Wineries

A guide to the region's highlights

Posted: June 24, 2013  By Tim Fish

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Value Reds Built for Millennials

A new generation of California blends will make you forget the days of Hearty Burgundy

Posted: June 19, 2013  By Tim Fish

It's good to see that Americans are beginning to ignore one of the long-standing "rules" of California wine—that it has to be varietally specific: Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, etc.

Blends have been a no-no, particularly when it comes to value wines, but America is now more confident and comfortable with wine, and we no longer have to live down the days we swilled cheap "Hearty Burgundy" and generic jugs of "Chablis."

Millennials, the industry is learning, are open-minded about blends, and that changing mindset has lead to a new generation of value-oriented California red blends.

News & Features  :  Tasting Highlights

9 Winning California Merlots

New reviews of Golden State reds that raise the bar on quality

Posted: June 17, 2013  By Tim Fish

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