A Legendary Wine Experience

From the heights of Moon Mountain to the windswept hills of Carneros, Signature Sonoma Valley is an exclusive, two-day immersion into the incomparable wines, acclaimed vineyards and welcoming community of Sonoma Valley. This is the inaugural event and one you will never forget. To learn more click the image below.


There were a number of wineries established in the mid to late 1800s in California that still exist however Foppiano Vineyards is the longest continually run family winery in Sonoma County. Some of the original dwellings and structures still exist, even the tasting room is built out of the original old redwood tanks. And if you visit you can still taste their 1996 Petite Sirah. The place is steeped in history. Join me in the Russian River Valley appellation as I talk with the president, the winemaker and self-appointed historian.



Foppiano Vineyards

On this podcast we talk about Tannat wine grown and crafted by Bodega Garzón in Uruguay and Y. Rousseau Wines in Napa. Joining me in this discussion is Christian Wylie, the general manager of Bodega Garzón, and French American Yannick Rousseau, the winemaker of his namesake winery. We in the U.S. are not terribly familiar with the Tannat grape varietal but it is respected in South America and southwest France. Through the efforts of these two experienced wine masters and other wineries who are giving it a chance we’ll all become more familiar and appreciative of the unique characteristics this varietal has to offer. By listening to this podcast you’ll also become familiar with the state-of-the-art Bodega Garzón winery and the region. You may also be inspired to visit!



Christian Wylie of Bodega Garzon with his Tannat       Winemaker Yannick Rousseau enjoying the Tannat aroma

To hear my interview with Yannick Rousseau about his wines click here.

Here’s more good news concerning the health benefits from red wine. A recent study led by researchers at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute has found evidence that resveratrol, a polyphenol antioxident found in grape skins, berries and other foods, can protect neural connections in the brain and muscle fibers from the adverse effects of aging.

For example, Neuromuscular Junctions are utilized when you brain tells your arm to lift a glass. Those junctions between cells degrade with age. Now it seems resveratrol can slow the degeneration process allowing you to have more opportunities to lift that glass.

To get the study details click here.

How have our drinking habits changed? According to BeverageDaily.com beer still tops the alcohol choice as the favorite of 38% of Americans. 31% of us prefer wine and 28% love their spirits or liquor. But wine drinkers today had a different favorite 10 years ago. 26% of today’s wine drinkers preferred spirits, 21% preferred beer.  Americans will continue to drink beer, as I still do, but preferences for wine as the favorite are growing.


Here’s an interesting stat. There are now over 11,000 wineries in the U.S., 11,095 to be exact.  98% of them are considered small wineries, producing less than 250,000 gallons annually. Of course California has the most wineries followed by Washington and Oregon. Texas added the most in 2016 with an increase of nearly 13 percent. That’s three times as much as the national increase of 4.3 percent.

On a side note E&J Gallo continue to dominate as the country’s largest producer with 75 million cases sold last year.

The amount of the grape varieties winemaker Bill Nachbaur includes in his field blends at Acorn Winery is mind-blowing. I don’t know of any winery that utilizes so many varieties in their blends. In the image below on the right you’ll see what goes into the Dolcetto, Sangiovese, Cabernet Franc, Syrah (a reasonable amount of varieties). Then there’s the extensive Zinfandel blend. On the left are the all of the varieties that make up his Medley Base which is part of the all-encompassing Medley Blend that includes all the varieties on the right as well! It truly is a grand palette from which Bill creates this unique blends. Somehow it all works well. They are as enjoyable as much as they are complex.

Here’s my interview with Bill –



For a cleaner resolution click this link

Once again this spring you can indulge your culinary ambitions with exclusive events that invigorate both mind and palate. During Flavor! Napa Valley, you’ll soak up inspiration from iconic chefs and winemakers while experiencing the best that Napa Valley has to offer.

Click here for more details

Here are three elements that lend to our enjoyment of wine.

Acidity – It’s a vital component helping the wine to taste fresh as well as preserving it. White wines with higher acidity usually age better than those with low.

Sweetness –  Sometimes there is residual sugar in wine, but there is also sweetness from the fruit. There may be no residual sugar but it may taste sweet from the fruit. Also, alcohol can add a certain sweetness to wine.

Bitterness and Astringency – Tannins are typically sensed by touch but tannins can also be sensed as bitter by the bitter receptors in the tongue.

When tannins, sweetness and acids are balanced in a harmonious way, according to your palate, then you have a lovely wine!