Tasting Notes

Tasting notes for individual wines.

Featured photo 2019 Smith-Madrone wines, Riesling, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, on a table with painting in the background

Smith-Madrone: Mountain Winemaking at its Best

I have a thing for mountainside vineyards. Growing vines on the side of a mountain is definitely not the easiest place to grow them, but some of the most interesting and complex wines I’ve tasted are grown there. Smith-Madrone wines are both. They are also elegant, unexpected and affordable. Affordable and Napa Valley are sometimes mutually exclusive with regard to […]

A Return to Uruguay for a Taste of Tannat

Last spring we tasted a group of wines from Uruguay that included Sauvignon Blanc, Moscatel and Cabernet Franc in addition to the country’s flagship variety, Tannat. That tasting was accompanied by a webinar that provided a detailed introduction to the country, its wine regions and growing conditions. We were impressed by the quality and affordability of the wines we tasted. […]

Featured photo Brilla! Prosecco Rosé and Valdo Marca Pro Prosecco bottles on a table with garden in background

Prosecco: Bubbly for Any Occasion or None at All

Prosecco has many appealing qualities beginning with those delightful bubbles that always feel celebratory — even if it’s just a mid-week meal at home. Their light, fruit flavors make them a good accompaniment to appetizers or a light meal especially in warmer weather. Then there’s Prosecco’s affordability, which means we can enjoy them without breaking the bank and use them […]

Domaine Bousquet Varietal Series wines featured photo of four wines on table with trees in background

A Taste of Domaine Bousquet’s Varietal Series Wines

If you are looking for an introduction to organic wines, one or more of Domaine Bousquet’s Varietal Series wines will be a delicious introduction. These wines are fresh and balanced. If you are already acquainted with organic wines, you will also appreciate how reasonably priced these wines are. We recently tasted four wines from the current release, which we received […]

Photo of two Esporão Reserva wines on table with trees in the background

New Esporão Reserva Wines: A Taste of History and Authenticity

For wine lovers who want a good backstory with their wine, look to Esporão. Herdade do Esporão is a historic estate in Portugal’s Alentejo wine region where traditional winemaking techniques are employed in modern winemaking facilities. And Esporão is fully committed to organic viticulture and sustainability. Today we are tasting two wines, which we received as tasting samples, that offer […]

Photo of 2021 Flora Springs Trilogy wine bottle and glass in front of wine books

A Taste of Flora Springs’ Flagship Red: 2021 Trilogy

The 2021 vintage of Trilogy marks the 38th bottling of what Flora Springs has always considered its flagship red wine. It continues to be sourced from Komes and Garvey family vineyards. Trilogy is a Cabernet Sauvignon based blend sourced primarily from the family’s Komes Ranch Vineyard. We received this wine as a tasting sample. Flora Springs’ history begins with the […]

Photo of three Revelshine wines on a table with trees in the background

Revelshine: California Wine Packaged in Aluminum Bottles

Jake Bilbro is a fourth-generation winemaker from Sonoma. He learned winemaking from his father Chris, founder of Marietta Cellars, before he went on to purchase Limerick Lane. He appreciates the importance of sustainability and also enjoys outdoor sports — his love of the outdoors is something else Jake learned from his father. Revelshine brings together Jake’s winemaking experience with his […]

Photo of a bottle of French Sparkling Cider and Crémant de Bourgogne on a table with lemon tree in the background

Sipping French Bubbles, But It’s Not Champagne

Today we are sipping French bubbles that are not champagne — one is a crémant and the other a non-alcoholic sparkling cider made in Normandy. We have tasted Crémant de Bourgogne before, but sparkling apple cider from Normandy is new to us. We received both as tasting samples. Cider has been made in France, primarily in Normandy and Brittany, since […]

Gurrieri Frappato bottle and glass of wine on a table with lemon tree in the background

A Taste of Sicily: Gurrieri Frappato

Unless you are familiar with Sicilian wines you might not be acquainted with the Frappato grape variety. It is indigenous to the southeastern corner of Sicily near Siracusa and Vittoria where it is mainly used as a blending partner for Nero d’Avola in Cerasuolo di Vittoria — Sicily’s only DOCG wine. But Frappato can also stand on its own as […]