Archive | California Wines

2008 Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.silveroak.com There’s no question that Silver Oak winery is one of the most premiere brands in the entire New World of wine. It’s been around over 40 years and has garnered acclaim from all over the world. While it doesn’t have the Meyer family involved anymore, its mission hasn’t changed […]

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2011 Andis Sauvignon Blanc – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.andiswines.com Sauvignon Blanc continues to be a crowd-pleasing white wine and for good reason. It’s clean finish makes it go extremely with with a variety of vegetarian and seafood dishes. This gem from Andis drinks very well and is one you should check out. Technical Data: Varietal Composition: 100% Sauvignon Blanc […]

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2010 Andis Mouvedre – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: Amador County  is an often over-looked region of Northern California and I think that’s mostly due to a lack of good marketing on their part. Sure, Napa is still the king when it comes to branding but Amador really does produce some elegant wines. Technical Data: Vintage: 2010 Wine Type: Medium […]

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2010 Hartford Russian River Valley Chardonnay – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.hartfordwines.com/ Hartford Family Cellars is clearly a Sonoma winery that’s dedicated to the art of making fine wines – although a good deal of its wines are well aboe the $50 mark, this little gem is only $32 and packs enough punch to take-on many White Burgundies at twice its price. […]

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2007 Swanson Alexis Cab – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.swansonvineyards.com Swanson Vineyards, located in Napa California, produces a very wide variety of wines – from red to white to pink to sweet, they got you covered. Additionally, they also have a “House Wine” selection which starts off around the $25 mark. This cab, however, weighs in at $75. Nose: […]

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2009 Clos Du Val Chardonnay – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.closduval.com Clos Du Val is a Napa brand that has wide-spread national distribution and has garnered a loyal following for producing good wines for the money. Technical Data: Appellation: Carneros, Napa Valley Composition: 100% Chardonnay Fermentation: Barrel fermented Cooperage: 10 months in French oak barrels, 20% new barrels Acid: 6.6 […]

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2010 Simi Sauvignon Blanc – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.simiwinery.com Simi Winery is a very popular California brand that has been making wines from a long time and has distribution just about everywhere – it’s an easily recognizable name by most wine lovers. I recently had the opportunity to meet its Vineyard Manager, Tom Gore, who gave me a […]

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Napa Cellars Reserve – 3-way Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.napacellars.com/ Napa Cellars’ reserve program has released three new releases that are all 100% varietal, made in small lots and designed to really showcase the terroir of the specific region the grapes were sourced from. \ 2010 Mount Veeder Chardonnay – W.E.P. Rating: 90% Technical Data: Appellation: Mount Veeder Composition: 100% Chardonnay […]

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2008 Ampelos Lambda Pinot Noir – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.ampeloscellars.com There’s no question that the Santa Barbara area of California has been producing stellar wines for a long time now. Unfortunatley, however, it seems that all too many people outside of that area often take the time to consider them, much less even taste or buy them. This is […]

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A pair of value-driven reds from Cali – Review

By Duane Pemberton It’s always good to find some “go-to”, everyday wines to help take the edge off your day and to help keep from draining your budget. These two popular red blends from California each feature Zinfandel – the darling red wine grape of California. 2009 Apothic Red – W.E.P. Rating: 60% Technical Data: […]

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2007 St. Francis Old-Vine Zinfandel – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website:  www.stfranciswinery.com St. Francis has been at it for over 35  years, producing wines from some of Sonoma County’s better appellations. It has clearly evolved into being considered by wine snobs as a “grocery store wine”, however, the past several years it has started to turn that image around by making […]

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2009 Crystal Basin Syrah – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: www.crystalbasin.com I’ve been saying for years now that the Sierra Foothills area of California has a very good potential for being the next well-known area for producing world-class cool-climate wines. Crystal Basin has been doing just that and this 2009 Syrah makes a great case for the values coming out […]

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2008 Ampelos Gamma Syrah – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: www.ampeloscellars.com The Santa Barbara region – unfortunately – seems to get lost to a great degree when it comes to thinking of great wine-producing regions in California. The facts are that it does produce world-class wines which do well in cooler climates. Syrah, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc are […]

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Kenwood 3-way red action – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: www.kenwoodvineyards.com Kenwood Vineyards is one of the most iconic producers in the greater Sonoma region of California. It’d been a staple, go-to-brand for millions of red wine drinkers from all over the world. There’s no doubt that it has played a large role in contributing to California’s success as a […]

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2009 Pedroncelli Bushnell Vineyard ZInfandel – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: www.pedroncelli.com The Sonoma region of California produces some of the best Zinfandel in the world – it’s really refined great Zin, almost to a science. The combination of weather, soil and elevation all play into creating distinct Zinfandel and the Pedroncalli Family produces some very tasty ones at prices that won’t […]

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2010 Masut Pinot Noir – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: www.masut.com The Fetzer family is no stranger at all when it comes to making wine – they’ve been at it for decades. So when sons, Jake and Ben wanted to start their own brand, showcasing what great Pinot can be like for a reasonable price, it was as natural for […]

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2009 Hall Cabernet Sauvignon – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: www.hallwines.com Craig and Kathryn Hall are busy creating a place in the Napa area that combines world-class wines with contemporary design. Based in the hills of Rutherford, this winery has its own estate vineyards which grow Bordeaux varietals. This is the first wine I’ve reviewed from them so I was […]

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2007 Deerfield Ranch Sonoma Zinfandel – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: www.deerfieldranch.com/ Even though Paso Robles has garnered a lot of well-deserved attention these past few years for its Zinfandel, the Sonoma region has long been held as the benchmark for quality zins. This 2007 Zin from Deerfield Ranch brings out all the classic things I love about Zinfandel – fruit, […]

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2009 Napa Cellars Zinfandel – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: www.napacellars.com/ Regardless of what time of the year it is, I still love a good steak that’s been grilled outdoors. While it’s so easy to reach for the classic “cab and steak” combination, there are many times – depending on the way I season it – that I’ll pick a […]

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2009 Pedroncelli Three Vineyards Cab – Review

By Duane Pemberton Winery website: http://www.pedroncelli.com It’s difficult for some folks to get around the fact that California has been producing quality Cabs for longer than any other state in the U.S.A. Its reputation of cabs is upheld around the world. One of the bigger challenges, however, for many California wineries is finding a way […]

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