Posted: July 11, 2007 By James Laube
Yesterday I caught up with Christian Moueix of Dominus , in the now-chic Napa Valley hamlet of Yountville. It's always fascinating spending time with Moueix. He brings a unique perspective to Napa Valley wine—his roots are in Bordeaux’s Right Bank communes.
Posted: July 11, 2007 By Bruce Sanderson
I opened two bottles of Burgundy during the past week. One was sublime, the other was disappointing. The disappointment came from a Chambolle-Musigny Les Charmes 2001 from Domaine Barthod-Noëllat. It was simply too young and in a dumb phase.
Posted: July 10, 2007 By James Molesworth
Two meals in the last week made me realize how the wines I celebrate with have changed dramatically in just the last few years. One dinner was to celebrate my wife’s birthday, the other meal was to celebrate a successful day on the golf course.
Posted: July 9, 2007 By James Laube
Midway through what amounted to a cellar cleansing, my friend Ms. V sighed, “God, do I have a lot of swill in here or what?” Ms. V is a hip wine drinker, with a first-class collection and plenty of gems, stored under prefect cellar conditions in her home in Sonoma.
Posted: June 29, 2007 By Bruce Sanderson
I recently received an e-mail from Tom Stephenson, general manager of Crush Wine & Spirits in New York. The store was holding an informal tasting for select clients and press that would include the Krug Grande Cuvée as well as the Krug Brut 1996 and Brut 1995.
Posted: June 20, 2007 By James Laube
The other night I had dinner with an old friend and we indulged in an old friend for dinner—the 1983 Guigal La Mouline … The wine brought back lots of fond memories. I’ve been drinking it since the 1980s and enjoyed it perhaps a dozen times since then.
Posted: June 18, 2007 By James Molesworth
I always have a tough time deciding when to decant a wine. There are no hard and fast rules. Decanting big, young, tannic reds makes sense on the surface, but I actually prefer to watch a young wine develop in the glass rather than miss out on it while it sits in a decanter.
Posted: June 3, 2007 By James Molesworth
The mistral made an appearance today, with a strong wind that constantly rustled the cypress trees, lavender bushes and other foliage in the garden here at Auberge de Cassagne. It quickly dried the rain that fell overnight and freshened the air that had been slightly humid.
Posted: May 30, 2007 By James Molesworth
Last week my father retired. Forty years as a professor at Queens College was enough—I don’t blame him. For his first week in official retirement, my dad (along with my mom) went up to our weekend house in the Hudson Valley for some quiet R&R.
Posted: May 29, 2007 By Harvey Steiman
Dark clouds hang over Barossa Valley, which has seen no significant rain for months. The grapes are safely in the winery, and this mid-April afternoon holds the promise of a downpour to give the vines a much-needed drink.
Posted: May 14, 2007 By Harvey Steiman
Today, subdivisions surround Elderton 's 70-acre vineyard on the outskirts of Nuriootpa. The Ashmead family, which owns the land in the heart of Barossa Valley and the brand, steadfastly refuses to give in and sell, despite plenty of attractive offers.
Posted: May 11, 2007 By Bruce Sanderson
I had dinner earlier this week with Katharina Prüm of Joh. Jos. Prüm and Wilhelm Steifensand, one of Prüm’s U.S. importers and president of Valckenberg. The question arose about how to best market German Riesling.
Posted: May 11, 2007 By James Molesworth
As we judge the restaurants that enter our wine program each year, we look for the best new entrants that can potentially compete for our top honor, the Grand Award. These establishments are typically newer, and they've burst onto the scene with deep pockets and big wine cellars.
Posted: May 3, 2007 By James Laube
Those traveling to Napa this summer should make a point of dining at La Toque, while Sonoma visitors should try Cyrus. Cyrus (www.cyrusrestaurant.com) is an upscale restaurant near Healdsburg Plaza. I had my first meal there last week, and chef Douglas Keane's culinary wizardry exceeded my expectations.
Posted: April 23, 2007 By James Molesworth
It was Saturday, and Nancy and I had spent the day cleaning out the vegetable garden from under a pile of dead leaves. We even took advantage of the early summer-like weather to sow a few rows of beets, beans and lettuce.
Posted: March 22, 2007 By James Laube
One of our readers, Roger, just posted a good question in response to a recent blog. “When do you think is the earliest point to open a 2001 [Cabernet]?” I think 2001s should drink well from now until they’re 15 or 20 years old, maybe longer, assuming they’re properly stored.
Posted: March 16, 2007 By James Laube
This week took on a personality of its own, as weeks sometimes do. There’s no way I could have predicted some of the coincidences, which triggered several flashbacks, some good memories, and the sense that this is a very small world indeed.
Posted: March 16, 2007 By Harvey Steiman
Picking a wine to go with steak ought to be the simplest of tasks. After all, it's plain red meat. What could go wrong? In truth, not much can get in the way. But various red wines can turn in different directions, depending on how the steak is done and how it's seasoned or dressed.
Posted: March 12, 2007 By James Molesworth
Today, I spent time with Marc Kent of Boekenhoutskloof and David Finlayson of Glen Carlou. Kent makes top-flight Cabernet, Syrah and Sémillon, while Finlayson produces excellent Cabernet, Syrah and Chardonnay.
Posted: March 12, 2007 By James Laube
The wax came off and the cork came out of a 1989 Dunn Howell Mountain Cabernet on Saturday night. This wine was from what Napa winemakers dubbed “the vintage from hell.” Part of it might have been their fault: They hung a huge crop, and then at about the time the grapes were ready to come off the vine, it rained and stayed damp.
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