Where Have All the Malbecs Gone?

San Francisco, CA.  2007. I was the Sommelier & General Manager at multi-year Wine Spectator list awarded, multi-year Michelin-starred Yabbies Coastal Kitchen on Polk St., between Vallejo & Green in the historic Russian Hill District – the restaurant where I actually met Cam for the first time as…

9 Cabernet Sauvignon Facts

Sensing a theme here on the blog again… It’s International Cabernet Day, and thus, we offer fun Cab facts for you! Cabernet Sauvignon is the child of Cabernet Franc crossed with Sauvignon Blanc.  And it was most likely not intentional.  It occured in the 17th century in the…

Understanding AOC: Bordeaux

We’re going to go out on a limb here and assume you have heard of Bordeaux before and skip the whole “one of the most recognizable wine regions in the world” speil and get down to the real reason we are talking about it – what is in…

Understanding AOC: The AOC

When you buy a bottle of Champagne, Bordeaux, Burgundy, or any other French wine, there is a governing body that oversees the labeling and production standards to guarantee the finest provenance for the labeled product.  That body is the Appellation d’origine contrôlée, or more simply, the AOC. The…

Understanding AVA: Meritage

In California wines, you will see a blend called Meritage (rhymes with “heritage”), but what does that mean? Meritage is a portmanteau of the words “merit” and “heritage.”  It is used in regards to the merit of the noble Bordeaux grapes that make up these blends and a testament…

Cabernet Franc

Happy Cabernet Franc Day! And it couldn’t be at a better time of the year.  Nothing sounds better than cozying up by the fireplace with a delicious glass of Cab Franc to help keep you warm. Cabernet Franc in the new world has an association with big heavy…

Merlot, Merlot, Merlot…

Happy International Merlot Day! Here are 10 facts about Merlot you may (or may not) know: Merlot is the child of Cabernet Franc & Magdeleine Noire des Charentes, recent DNA testing has proven this where the grape’s full origins were unknown for many years. Merlot’s soft skin is…

Rutherford AVA, Napa Valley

Situated in the center of Napa Valley is the world famous Rutherford AVA.  Established as a sub-appellation of Napa Valley in 1993, Rutherford has a total area of 7,457 acres of which 1,454 acres are cultivated for grapes.  Sandwiched between St. Helena to the north, Oakville to the…

Decoded: Intro to Wine Bottle Shapes

In the world of wine, there are numerous bottle shapes and styles.  More recently, wineries have been doing some incredibly artistic things with their bottles with marketing and customer awareness in mind.  At a later date we will go into a much deeper dive on these shapes and…