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General Wine Stuff

RE:FIND Distillery is up to even MORE fun and delicious things

RE:FIND Distillery is still the best little distillery on the Central Coast. I am somewhat biased about this, but trust me.  You need to try these spirits. I stopped in for a visit last week to see what they’ve been up to since I featured them last year–because the Villicanas (owners Alex and Monica), with […]

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General Wine Stuff

Quick update: Rangeland’s new tasting room is open!

You may recall my profile of Rangeland wines in Paso Robles last summer–beautifully crafted estate wines in a gorgeous west Paso setting. The only catch was that you had to make an appointment to taste their wines–maybe you’re shy about that, or maybe it’s just a difficult thing to schedule on a weekend of wine […]

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General Wine Stuff

A celebration of Lodi’s old vine Zinfandels

If you have ever uttered the words “I don’t like Zinfandel,” I humbly suggest you are most likely wrong about that. Sure, taste in wines is a hugely subjective thing, but when most people say “I don’t like Zinfandel,” what they almost always mean–whether they realize it or not–is that they don’t like the popular-10-years-ago […]

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General Wine Stuff

2018 California Wine Country calendar – pretty pictures for a great cause!

Along with my usual nature photography calendar (my annual Visionary Light calendar), I’m offering a California wine country calendar this year.  It features images from the state’s beautiful wine regions, and I’m donating $5 from the sale of each calendar to the RCU North Coast Fire Relief Fund, which is helping with recovery from this […]

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General Wine Stuff

Some photos from California’s 2017 harvest

Just because California (mostly) broke its five-year drought this year did not mean it was a perfect year for growing winegrapes.  Growers dealt with devastating floods early in the season–leaving some of Lodi’s most storied vineyards submerged in water until early summer!–and an unprecedented heat spike just as harvest began, with almost two weeks of […]

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General Wine Stuff

It’s that time again–California Garagistes’ Urban Exposure Los Angeles THIS SATURDAY 7/15

Like wine?  Go here.  Seriously–of all the wine events I attend each year, I always have the most fun at Garagiste because there’s a little bit of everything.  No matter what type of wine you like–got a favorite variety? Favorite style?  “Big” wines? Low alcohol wines?  It’s all here. In addition to the fantastic variety […]

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General Wine Stuff

Markus Niggli and the importance of place.

I have been going in circles for months now over how to tell you about Markus Niggli and his incredible, challenging (and astonishingly good) wines.  Writer’s block isn’t generally something I struggle with, but I also rarely come across someone like Markus–or his wines.  And yes, I’m going to be throwing out a barrage of […]

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General Wine Stuff

Adventures in wine and food pairing at Lodi’s beautiful Wine & Roses Hotel

When LoCA’s Randy Caparoso asks if you might possibly have plans to be in Lodi the following weekend, you should probably say YES, even if you live in Los Angeles and did not, in fact, already have plans to be in Lodi.  If it were me, that is–and it was, and I did say yes. […]

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General Wine Stuff

Acquiesce: Through the looking glass with Lodi’s White(s) Queen

I hope Sue Tipton forgives (or at least has a chuckle over) the literary reference above.  As I sat down to write this piece, and thought about how to title it, I realized I was as confounded by how to properly describe her and her outstanding wines as I was the first day I tasted […]

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General Wine Stuff

Greenbar’s Grand Poppy Liqueur–California in a bottle

I do not generally devote an entire blog post to a single wine, or a single bottle of spirits (unless it’s just a quickie kind of review). But this is different.  Really different. First, a preamble and a bit of a explanation for why I am so besotted with Greenbar’s Grand Poppy bitter liqueur (or […]