Recent Posts

Photo of nine small bottles of Australian Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir in Australia: A Taste of Four Cool-Climate Regions

Several months ago I attended a tasting of Australian Pinot Noir hosted by the San Francisco Wine School. The tasting focused on four cool-climate regions in Australia and brought a taste of the Pinot Noir Celebration Australia, held in the Mornington Peninsula in February, to the US. I attended the tasting and received sample wines as a media guest of […]

Photo of Sulphur Springs Valley view with mountains in the background, grassland in the foreground and large white clouds in a blue sky

Wine Tasting and Hiking In and Around Willcox, Arizona

It has been five years since we last visited Arizona’s Willcox wine region in the southeastern part of the state. We have missed the wide open spaces with cloud-filled skies that go on for miles. We’ve missed hiking in the mountains that surround the Sulphur Springs Valley. We missed relaxing among the mesquite trees and birdwatching at our favorite B&B. […]

Photo of three bottles of Tuscan Sangiovese in garden setting

Tuscan Sangiovese: Versatile and Enjoyable in Any Season

While it is true that we enjoy red wines more often in the cooler months of fall and winter, we are always happy to discover red wines to enjoy during spring and summer too. When we do drink red wines in warmer weather we prefer red wines that aren’t quite so rich and heavy bodied. We still look for complex […]

Photo of Colorful outdoor art in Scottsdale

On the Scottsdale Wine Trail: An Update

Quite a bit has changed since 2017 when we first published a post about the Scottsdale Wine Trail. The wine trail is collection of Arizona winery tasting rooms located in Old Town and downtown Scottsdale. One winery has relocated on the trail, three new wineries have joined and one has left. The tasting rooms are all located within about six […]

Bottle shots Laverne wines and Notre Vue olive oil

Balverne Wines: An Elegant Expression of Russian River Valley and Chalk Hill

Notre Vue Estate & Winery sits on a 710-acre property south of Healdsburg straddling Sonoma’s Russian River Valley and Chalk Hill AVAs. 250 acres of vineyards cover the rolling hills, but 350 acres are protected as “Forever Wild” open space. Balverne is a sister label to Notre Vue and both are sourced exclusively from Notre Vue vineyards. We received these […]

Photo of BARRA Reserve Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon

New Wines, New Label from BARRA of Mendocino

BARRA of Mendocino continues their commitment to family farming and crafting delicious certified-organic wines with the recent release of their reserve wines. These new wines remain very reasonably priced and come with some exciting packaging changes. We received these wines as tasting samples. Charlie Barra began farming organically because that’s how he learned to farm from his parents, who emigrated […]

Photo of Sandro de Bruno, Zanon Boschera, Antonella Piatti Erbaluce di Caluso, Vigna Petrussa Schioppettino de Prepotto and Aldo Clerico Langhe Nebbiolo on a table in front of trees and a fountain.

VeroVino: A Taste of Northern Italy

This third group of wines curated by Sheila Donohue on her website VeroVino, and sent to us as tasting samples, is a treasure trove of unusual grape varieties and lesser-known (at least to us) wine regions in northern Italy. As usual, these VeroVino wines are made by small producers using sustainable or organic practices in their vineyard and cellar. I […]

VeroVino Spain and Portugal featured photo

VeroVino: A Taste of Spain and Portugal

Our wine travels continue to the Iberian Peninsula today with a tasting of three wines sent to us by VeroVino as tasting samples. Sheila Donohue has curated a collection of wines made by small producers following organic practices in the vineyard and low-intervention winemaking in the cellar. Many of the wines she sells are new to the US market. These […]

VeroVino Wines from Austria and Czech Republic featured photo

VeroVino: A Taste of Austria and Czech Republic

Last week we introduced you to wine merchant Sheila Donohue and her website VeroVino. This week we begin tasting the wines she sent to us as tasting samples. Sheila was the first to import many of these wines into the US and all have several things in common: small production, family winemakers following organic, biodynamic or low-intervention practices in the […]

VeroVino graphic

VeroVino: Authentic Wine is More Than Just A Name

I’m always curious to know how wine lovers become so passionate about wine, especially those who go beyond a passing interest to pursue advanced education and accreditation, not to mention establish themselves in the wine business. When I was recently introduced to the VeroVino® website I was immediately impressed by the focus of the wines on offer: small production, family […]