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The LoCA Life & Times

In Lodi, wine comes first. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. Meet the passionate people behind our handcrafted wines and gnarly old vines.

Randy Caparoso
 
July 30, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Finicky Graciano grape achieves mini-cult status in Lodi’s Clements Hills

Finicky Graciano grape achieves mini-cult status in Lodi’s Clements Hills

It was during one of their first trips to Spain when Rick and Erin Taylor first tasted a wine made from the Graciano grape, right from a barrel in a little bodega (winery). “We were blown away,” says Mr. Taylor. “It was unlike anything else we’d ever tasted.” Later, when the Taylors discovered that Markus and Liz Bokisch were growing Graciano here in Lodi, where the Taylors were also living, “we knew we had to make that wine.” Hence, the birth of the Taylors’ Riaza Wines, one of Lodi’s newest wineries (est. 2011), and the upcoming release of the 2010..

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Time Posted: Jul 30, 2012 at 8:15 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
July 25, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Michael David easy-skankin’ at their annual REGGAE & RHONE concert

Michael David easy-skankin’ at their annual REGGAE & RHONE concert

Oh lord, stuck in Lodi has never been so irie, mon… Michael David Winery continues with their 10th annual REGGAE & RHONE concert (Saturday, August 18, 6 PM), which will include an unbelievable Rhone style wine tasting under the winery’s gigantic weeping willow tree, a full-on Caribbean style barbecue dinner (by Stockton’s Breadfruit Tree), and the authentically Jamaican, so-jah-say, dem-belly-full, lively-up-yourself (and don’t say no!) sounds of Mystic Bowie and his band. Make no mistake: this will be the Delta’s skankingest event of the year! So while we’re talking about it, let’s go over the line-up of outstanding, multi-award winning Michael..

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Time Posted: Jul 25, 2012 at 8:20 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
July 23, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Summer concerts to remember in Lodi Wine Country

Summer concerts to remember in Lodi Wine Country

Summer is here and the time is right for dancing… in the vineyards. Temperatures may be on the rise, but think about how dull life was five, six months ago, when skies were gray and the chill was numbing – not exactly conducive to kicking off of shoes, showing some skin, and letting pillowy piles of green grass massage your feet. All the more reason to enjoy the sounds, rays and wines of summer featured at the following special events put on by Lodi wineries. Please note: in all of the following venues outside alcoholic beverages are not allowed, and..

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Time Posted: Jul 23, 2012 at 8:26 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
July 19, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Pasos Tannat can crank up summer grills

Pasos Tannat can crank up summer grills

Tannat is not a wine grape to be trifled with. Its black-purplish color can be intimidating, and its thick, tannin laden texture a mountainous affair. If none of that bothers you in a red wine, then you can, to paraphrase Jimi Hendrix, chop it down with the edge of your hand. Maybe pick up all the pieces and make an island, like a kid playing with food on the plate. At least that’s what Antonio Pasos seems like: a winemaker shaping iconoclastic wines seemingly out of mounds of sand. Mr. Pasos works out of his Pasos Vineyards winery in Vino..

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Time Posted: Jul 19, 2012 at 8:30 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
July 17, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

ZAP’s upcoming Grille O’Rama speaks to Zinfandel’s barbecued soul

ZAP’s upcoming Grille O’Rama speaks to Zinfandel’s barbecued soul

ZAP – the Zinfandel Advocates & Producers organization that has done more to popularize the joys of California Zinfandel than anything in the world, apart from the wines themselves – knows where its bread is buttered. Zinfandel has become an everyday go-to beverage around the world (they’re even rocking with it in places as far-off as Shanghai and Stockholm, Berlin and Bombay…) not just because the grape produces a truly fine and delicious red wine, but also because at its very essence is the bare naked fact: Zinfandel makes an incredible barbecue wine. We love barbecue, the Swedes and Chinese..

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Time Posted: Jul 17, 2012 at 8:36 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
July 12, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Sorelle’s Sangiovese defies all odds

Sorelle’s Sangiovese defies all odds

There’s always one in the bunch. A newly loosed winegrower, seemingly oblivious to industry trends; making a decision to plant, as his centerpiece, a grape with a solid track record of market disappointment: California grown Sangiovese. But, boy, are we glad that Mike Scott, owner/grower of the Sorelle Winery estate, stuck to his guns because the first wine made 100% from his vineyard – the 2010 Sorelle Troppo Bella Lodi Sangiovese ($23) – is an unmitigated success: beautifully focused and filigreed fragrances of black cherry and rose petal in amongst a backdrop suggesting dried herb potpourri; the delicate array of..

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Time Posted: Jul 12, 2012 at 8:45 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
July 10, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Lodi at its crazy best: Borra’s exciting, new Intuition White

Lodi at its crazy best: Borra’s exciting, new Intuition White

The crazy thing about Lodi these days is that the surprises never seem to cease. Instead, we have vignerons who insist on constantly breaking the mold, while shattering commonly perceived misconceptions in the process. This month Borra Vineyards – which holds the distinction of being the oldest of Lodi’s small, family owned wineries (originally bonded in 1975) – will be coming out with a brand new sub-label of sorts, to be called Intuition, which will pleasantly surprise, if not shock, even the most knowledgeable of Lodi wine lovers. Why “Intuition?” Well, as the name implies, that’s something you should know..

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Time Posted: Jul 10, 2012 at 8:51 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
July 5, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Round-up of Lodi’s finest dry rosés

Round-up of Lodi’s finest dry rosés

Summer is heating up with a vengeance; and this year the wines that seem to be on everyone’s lips are dry rosés. And a good rosé, to paraphrase the bard, by any other name may smell as sweet, but are certainly not all the same. To begin with, rosé wines come in many shades of color, from transparent orange/bricks to extremely bright coral or flamingo-like colors. Yet all are classified as rosé wines because they are made from black skinned grapes that normally produce red wines: most commonly, grapes like Grenache, Tempranillo, Carignane, Sangiovese, Pinot Noir, and Zinfandel (although those..

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Time Posted: Jul 5, 2012 at 8:56 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
July 3, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Summer sensations of Downtown Lodi’s Farmers Market & Wine Bars

Summer sensations of Downtown Lodi’s Farmers Market & Wine Bars

It’s that time of year, when locals, visitors and families by the thousands are flocking to Downtown Lodi‘s picturesque main drag (School St.) to enjoy The Downtown Certified Farmers Market, which got off in full swing at the beginning of this past June, and will continue every Thursday (5 to 9 PM) through the month of August. Besides live music, an array of foods from gigantic Lockeford sausage dogs and grilled teriyaki chicken to gourmet paella and colorful snow cones, there’s a Kids Zone to keep the munchkins entertained while adults pick out the seasonal local produce (including those from a..

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Time Posted: Jul 3, 2012 at 9:03 PM