Letters from Lodi
An insightful and objective look at viticulture and winemaking from the Lodi
Appellation and the growers and vintners behind these crafts. Told from the
perspective of multi-award winning wine journalist, Randy Caparoso.
Here at the end of 2012, it makes sense to catch up with Markus Bokisch, whose Bokisch Ranches have become one of the most important vineyard management companies in the Lodi American Viticultural Area (a.k.a. AVA).
Bokisch Ranches is not the largest grower in Lodi – that would be companies like LangeTwins Family, John Kautz Farms, Vino Farms, the Dosio family’s Pacific Agri Lands, and a few others – but they are significant because of their upward growth despite increasing economic barriers (2,200 bearing acres of wine grapes, with another 900 acres in development), and because they sell to such a large number of specialty wineries throughout the state, who also tend to garner the most press...Continue »
When you taste wine or food, are you tasting with your nose and mouth, or your mind?
Consider this: in India, Hindu customers once marched against a dozen locations of McDonald’s; where, because of dietary restrictions, McDonald’s sells no beef product (only vegetable and lamb burgers). What raised their ire? They had heard about a lawsuit in the U.S. brought by a group of vegetarians against McDonald’s for flavoring their fries with a “natural flavor” derived from beef extract, which they the Hindus were also unknowingly consuming (see New York Times Archives on McDonald’s eventual settlement)...Continue »
In recent weeks, lucky visitors to Sorelle Winery have been treated to a special drink: a classic mulled (or “spiced”) wine that Mike Scott and his family – owners and growers of this outstanding Lodi AVA winery, specializing in Italian varietals – have been calling Sorelle Vin Brulé...Continue »
For Christmas, what do you give a Lodi wine lover who’s tried everything? A full case (12 bottles) of Lodi’s 12 finest wines, of course.
Herein lies the dilemma: the Lodi wine industry has recently reached the point where it is simply an impossibility to pick Lodi’s “12 finest wines.” There’s just too darned many of them!Continue »
Have a hankering to taste some super hand crafted Lodi grown wines this weekend? Estate Crush — Lodi’s 16,000 square foot custom crush facility — will quietly open its tasting room this weekend (Dec. 10-11, 12-5 PM) at the corner of Lockeford and Sacramento (the north end of Downtown Lodi)...Continue »
Does price affect the “quality” of wine? Yes, indeed it do.
At least according to results of a study that was released back in 2008, conducted by Antonio Rangel, Associate Professor of Economics at the California Institute of Technology (as reported by the Stanford Business Web site). In this study, Rangel asked volunteers to blind-taste 5 different bottles of Cabernet Sauvignon, and then rate their preferences. Rangel ran this taste test 15 times with 15 different groups, and the wines were always presented in random order...Continue »
What happens when you take 11 of Lodi’s best winemaker/growers, and sit them down at one table to blind-taste their own Zinfandels?
In early November we did exactly that, in the Cellar Room of Lodi’s posh Wine & Roses Hotel & Spa. Our focus was on Zinfandels from the 2010 vintage: a year that has been characterized by more than a few winegrowers as very “North Coast” – meaning, a year of significantly cooler than normal weather throughout the growing season (only one day hitting 100° F. – fewer than what Napa Valley experienced in 2010)...Continue »