tim fish

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Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

My Favorite Wines of 2013

Plus a few winemaker friends pick their favorites of the year

Posted: December 18, 2013  By Tim Fish

So many good wines and only 365 days to drink them. That's what makes it tough to pick the best wines of the year. My go-to list of course is Wine Spectator's Top 100 of 2013, but I also have my personal favorites. These are wines that left an impression on me for many reasons: where I was when I tried it, who I was with, the meal that went along.

Dec. 15, 2013 Issue  :  People

Up By His Bootstraps

For hardworking vintner Paul Hobbs, success spans cellars around the globe

Posted: December 15, 2013  By Tim Fish

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Great Wines and Great Values for Holiday Bubbly

California offers something for every taste and budget this season

Posted: December 11, 2013  By Tim Fish

Now that I've been reviewing California sparkling wine for Wine Spectator for the past decade, I can say the wines have never been better, whether it is the luxury "tête de cuvées" or the value wines the Golden State has long been known for.

Look for reviews of some of my favorite California bubblies in the Dec. 31 issue. Meanwhile, here is a selection of the top wines as well as three great values priced at $20 or less.

News & Features  :  Tasting Highlights

9 Vibrant Sonoma Zinfandels

New reviews of 2010s and 2011s from Rockpile, Sonoma Valley and Dry Creek Valley

Posted: December 2, 2013  By Tim Fish

Nov. 30, 2013 Issue  :  Tasting Reports

California Merlot's Challenging 2010s

A cool growing season results in mixed quality

Posted: November 30, 2013  By Tim Fish

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

A Toast to Thanksgivukkah

What wines will you drink when Hanukkah and Thanksgiving share the same day?

Posted: November 20, 2013  By Tim Fish

My family has been celebrating Thanksgiving and Hanukkah side-by-side for decades. My wife's Jewish family gathers every year in Southern California and we all celebrate Hanukkah on the day after. (Even if it's technically weeks away.) We eat leftovers and there's usually a brisket, too.

And wine of course. If you think selecting a wine to go along with the turkey dinner spread is tough, just trying adding a brisket to the dilemma. It's impossible of course, so I usually open a little of everything and let everyone pick what they want for both events.

For Thanksgiving I look for lighter- to -medium-body reds like Pinot Noir (or Burgundy), Beaujolais or a red blend that's not too tannic, plus a floral white like Riesling, a delicate Chablis or (even better) a fruit-forward rosé. Here are 10 of my recommendations.

News & Features  :  Tasting Highlights

9 Exciting California Reds

New reviews of 2011 Zinfandels from Sonoma's Russian River and Dry Creek

Posted: November 18, 2013  By Tim Fish

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Have You Ever Tasted a Perfect Wine?

Many wines are outstanding, but a truly 100-point wine is rare

Posted: November 13, 2013  By Tim Fish

I've tasted a lot of great wines over the years but I'm not sure I've ever tasted a perfect one. Perfection, as I see it, is a tricky business. It's like fog: You know it's there, but just try catching it.

News & Features  :  News

West Coast Wineries Are Up for Sale—Quietly

A wave of recent deals show investors see opportunities in wine, while owners see an exit strategy

Posted: November 12, 2013  By Tim Fish

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Hearty Reds for the Fleeting Sunlight

Put away those frivolous wines of summer and drink something fit for autumn

Posted: November 6, 2013  By Tim Fish

Fall arrived in Sonoma County on Monday, or at least it finally felt like it, finally. It was something in the air, that hard to define mix of fleeting sunlight, long shadows and leaves in the breeze. Autumn comes late in Northern California and lingers only until the first serious storm blows in from the Pacific.

I'm in the mood for different wines when the weather changes. The flavors are generally richer, deeper and more multifaceted, so I look for a wine that's similar. A zesty red Rhône blend is often perfect, likewise Syrah and Zinfandel, plus red blends from Italy and Spain. Here are a few affordable picks for the fall.

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