Archive for February, 2011

Iberian grapes thrill Fenestra Fanatics

February 25th, 2011
Iberian grapes thrill Fenestra Fanatics

Lodi is the California epicenter for Portuguese and Spanish grapes… Sometimes in life you crave more than vanilla and chocolate.  For wine lovers, this means more than Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, or even Pinot Noir and Zinfandel.  The recent emergence of Lodi as the epicenter of exotic Iberian grapes — like Verdelho and Graciano, Alvarelhão and Touriga — has been fulfilling many a tired, jaded wine lover’s appetite.  When it comes to fine wine, nothing wrong with kinky! Lanny and Fran Replogle of Fenestra Winery have been producing classic California varietals in an historic old winery in Livermore Valley since 1980;.. VIEW MORE »

Birds of a feather make great zin together

February 22nd, 2011
Birds of a feather make great zin together

The 2008 Barsetti Vineyards Lodi Zinfandel, which recently garnered a Silver Medal at the 2011 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, is not a wine that bowls you over with its alcoholic or oak driven strength.  Quite the opposite:  it is a Zinfandel that gently tugs at the heart and palate with vibrant, spiced berry and sweet tea-like flavors, unfurled from a meaty, zesty edged, medium sized body, finishing dry and smooth. In fact, much like the 2006 Barsetti Vineyards Lodi Zinfandel, still in retail stores like the Lodi Wine & Visitor Center:  the 2006 began as a tightly harmonious wine.. VIEW MORE »

Our top 5 chocolate weekend matches

February 17th, 2011
Our top 5 chocolate weekend matches

Wine & Chocolate Weekend’s wildest, funnest matches… One thing many of the Lodi wine lovers who partook in this last weekend’s knockdown, throwdown 2011 Wine & Chocolate Weekend probably discovered:  perfectly delicious wines and chocolate matches come in all shapes and sizes. So let us now fondly reminisce over the funner — and in every case, mind blowing — combinations we were fortunate to experience in Lodi wine country during the past weekend: Lodi sausages in chocolate barbecue sauce with 2008 Harney Lane Lodi Zinfandel ($22) -  Oh me, oh my, was this a good one:  the black cherry/raspberry bright,.. VIEW MORE »

Blissful days of Lodi wine & chocolate

February 14th, 2011
Blissful days of Lodi wine & chocolate

Lodi’s 2011 Wine & Chocolate Weekend was two days of bliss for the approximately 4,500 people enjoying the the gifts bestowed by Mother Nature (crystal blue skies, sleeveless temperatures) and the forty Lodi wineries pulling out all the stops to engage and entertain couples, friends and families alike, while neatly clipped spurs of ancient vine Zinfandels lay grazing in the grass of winter’s recent rains. Epitomizing the hospitality rarely found in other wine regions, during the entire two days The Lucas Winery’s winemaker/proprietor David Lucas stood at the barn sized door of his tasting room to make a point of.. VIEW MORE »

Chocolate chili & truffle wine matches

February 10th, 2011
Chocolate chili & truffle wine matches

Matching chocolates with dry red wines… “Chocolates made for wines,” says Linda Bartlett of Truffle Gateau, “are more like cheese pairings… soft like Brie, and never too sweet.”  When Barlett founded her Sacramento based confectionery, she made it her goal to create the “finest wine-pairing chocolates in the world,” developing recipes using natural ingredients like Callebaut Belgian chocolate, Madagascar vanilla, Peet’s espresso coffee, and Southern pecans. Today over 300 wineries in California and Oregon sell Bartlett’s “Truffle G’s” with their wines.  Bartlett will personally be on hand to offer her sumptuous chocolate & wine matches at The Lodi Wine &.. VIEW MORE »