Tag Archives: petit verdot

Out of Town: A Day Exploring Temecula’s Wine Country

Last year, I finally took advantage of the opportunity to visit Temecula’s Wine Country. With iPods loaded with crazy throwback tunes, playlists roaring and near perfect weather, my friends and I hit the open road on our way through the hills to Temecula. What was I expecting upon arriving? To be honest, I had no idea. I had been to Stone Brewing Company the previous year so the scenery I was looking for was similar to that. Desert hillsides lined with sparse greenery, palm trees and a lot of rocky soil. As we approached the "Welcome to Temecula" sign, we drove past gorgeous housing communities and neighborhoods, which had me scratching my head. Okay... so, where is wine country? [...]

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Saude Creek Vineyards; The new youngsters of the South (AmericanWineryGuide)

The STORY “The privately-owned vineyard bears about 22 acres on property and includes Vidal Blanc, Chardonnay, Petit Verdot and Chambourcin. The seven nearby off-site acres contain Merlot and Chardonel. As you pull into the property through the front gates, you follow the vineyard-lined roadway towards the enormous, dark wood-sided tasting and production facility. To the left is a covered production area with crush pad, and to the right is a gorgeous wrap-around covered patio that stretches all the way around the tasting room. The patio is lined with wooden Adirondack chairs and side tables. As you glance out into the vineyards, there are countless acres of vines – many newly planted and enclosed in greenhouses. Peering off of the back patio, the steep hillside is lined with countless additional acres and, to the right side, a fire pit with more Adirondacks surrounded the pit. The site is stunning.” (Read More) …

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Arterra Wines; Where Art and Terroir collide, beautifully (AmericanWineryGuide)

Recently, we ventured out to Delaplane, Virginia to check out the latest new winery that is generating quite a buzz. Arterra presented us with top-notch wine, a quaint and relaxing setting, and plenty of art. With that said, we bring you the latest installment from AmericanWineryGuide.com that was published today. Enjoy! The STORY “A gorgeous, red, metal sign greets visitors with the name Arterra Wines carved on the upper portion and Hawkmoth Art carved on the bottom portion. The winery, which was recently opened by owners Jason Murray and Sandy Gray-Murray, combines Sandy’s art – it displays her artwork for sale under the Hawkmoth Art label – with the duo’s wines under the Arterra Wines label. Sandy began her venture as an art educator before deciding to give up the full-time education path to pursue her love of creating wine-inspired art under the Hawkmoth banner. Time constraints made it exceedingly …

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Halter Ranch Vineyard; A touch of Rhône, Ranch style (AmericanWineryGuide)

Paso Robles has some of the finest Rhône style wines in not only California, but the United States as well. Our latest AmericanWineryGuide contribution covers yet another gem that Paso Robles has to offer. Do not sleep on Paso, especially if you are a fan of small family-style wineries.   The HISTORY “Halter Ranch is located in the Paso Robles Westside Adelaida District and produces Bordeaux and Rhône-style wines made from 100% sustainable, estate-grown grapes. The ranch itself has been around since the late 1800s when it was originally owned by businessman Edwin Smith, who was a dealer in produce and livestock and was part of 3,600 acres of land he owned. Edwin built a Victorian farmhouse that later burned down, but was rebuilt and utilized until his business collapsed. In 1943, about 1,200 acres were purchased by the MacGillivray family and was farmed for over 50-plus years until the …

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Berry Hill Vineyard; Could this be our last visit to Berry Hill?

A few weeks back, I was going through my wine cellar and noticed a bottle of Berry Hill Cabernet Franc from 2010. I remember it being palate shocking and absolutely outstanding from the nose to the finish, and it got me thinking that it has been a while since we all visited Dave at the vineyard. Coincidentally, I received a note from Kurt at WineAboutVA explaining that Dave was selling his house and vineyard so we needed to plan a final visit. Kurt put in the call to Dave and, voila, our last trip to Berry Hill Vineyards was planned. As I mentioned in last year’s visit, Dave Hilty is retired and started making wine as a hobby and for gifts until the tremendous success erupted into a full blown winery operation out of his garage. With just about 2 acres of grapes on the property, a portion of which is …

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Quick Pour: Sunset Hills Sunset Red Blend; A Vertical of the 2010 & 2011

Producer: Sunset Hills Vineyards Region: Shenandoah AVA, Middleburg AVA, Virginia, United States Price: $28 Vintage: 2011 Varietals: 39% Petit Verdot, 36% Cabernet Franc,  21% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, Estate Vineyard #1 , Estate Vineyard #2, Estate Vineyard #3, Maggie Malick Vineyard; (13% ABV) Virginia Pour House Notes: Pepper, raspberry, and rose petal notes greet the nose, while juicy fruit forward flavors of strawberry, cherry, and wild berry jam across the tastebuds with very tuned down tannins (faintly present), and a short, stunted finish with very light notes of oak and floral notes craving for some last minute attention. Average.   Producer: Sunset Hills Vineyards Region: Middleburg AVA, Virginia, United States Price: $28 Vintage: 2010 Varietals: 62% Cabernet Franc (Berry Hill Vineyard & Benevino Vineyard), 17% Nebbiolo (Berry Hill Vineyard), 12% Merlot (Sunset Hills Vineyard), 9% Petit Verdot (Waterford Vineyard) ; (13.5% ABV) Virginia Pour House Notes: Rich chocolate notes enveloped by light tobacco notes …

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Quick Pour: Chateau St. Jean Cinq Cepages 2005

Producer: Chateau St. Jean Region: Sonoma County AVA, California, United States Price: $64.99 Vintage: 2005 Varietals: Cinq Cépages (“Five Varieties”) is a Bordeaux-style blend consisting of Cabernet Sauvignon (77%), Merlot (9%), Cabernet Franc (7%), Malbec (4%), and Petit Verdot (3%). Each component is aged separately for two years in small French oak barrels (47% new) before blending. Once the wine is assembled, it spends six months in the bottle before release.(14% ABV) Virginia Pour House Notes: Complex and layered with plenty to decipher on the nose as it tosses around powdered dark chocolate, raspberry and star anise followed by notes of smoldering oak and forest brush. The flavor profile is smooth and concentrated with fruit forward qualities to start showing cassis, wild berries, and dark cherry that tapers mid palate but is reinforced by notes of white pepper, spice, cumin, with warming, neat, and balanced tannins on the seemingly endless finish. A gorgeous …

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Wisdom Oak Winery; Raise your glass to peace and quiet in Charlottesville (Yes, REALLY)

A fall review from AmericanWineryGuide as I covered Wisdom Oak Winery (Formerly Sugarleaf Vineyards) in the Charlottesville area. “As you spot the new Wisdom Oak Winery sign, planted where the former Sugarleaf Vineyards sign stood, you will find yourself traveling up a gravel, single lane road that appears to be the road to nowhere. As the trees clear and the farm house converted to tasting room, outlined by the 4 acres of vines in the background, appears, you instantly release a sigh of relief and can truly take a step back to admire the beauty of the Wisdom Oak grounds. Owner Jerry Bias purchased the property over a decade ago then under the Sugarleaf banner, but changed the name early in 2013 to commemorate the opening of the new tasting room. The property sits at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and presents guests with gorgeous views and the …

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2014 Virginia Wine Blogger Petit Verdot Blind Tasting at Casanel Vineyards

Since my first Blind Tasting years back, I have developed a love for this unbiased format of tasting your way through multiple varieties of the same wine from various producers. Blind tastings really provide tasters the ability to try wine without judging based on producer, price, or reputation because, well, it’s blind. My goal is to assemble groups of fellow bloggers, industry folks, and wine enthusiasts to take part in multiple blind tasting events to assist in unbiasedly pointing out some of Virginia’s standouts. During certain blind tastings, we may toss a couple of wild cards in there from other viticultural areas outside of Virginia to see where Virginia stands blindly against other producers throughout the world. One of the first events we held this year  was this blind Petit Verdot tasting, which was graciously hosted by Katie and the wonderful folks at Casanel Vineyards in Leesburg, Virginia. We originally …

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Quick Pour: Sunset Hills Winery Petit Verdot 2011

Producer: Sunset Hills Winery Region: Middleburg AVA, Northern Virginia, Virginia Price: N/A; Club Only Vintage: 2011 Varietals: 90% Petit Verdot. 10% Merlot Winemaker Notes: In many ways, Petit Verdot was a savior of the 2011 red harvest.  While the heavy rains of the season made it difficult for most reds to ripen as fully as we’d prefer, Petit Verdot, which is naturally quick to ripen very fully, made it through the rains with style.  Additionally, with its small, tough berries and heavy pigment, what was not used in this varietal blend became a very important blending piece for our other 2011 red wines.  The best Petit Verdot of the season, however, was saved for this blend.  We don’t always make a varietal Petit Verdot, but when the quality is high enough, and when the wine is interesting enough, we’re excited to bottle it.  The 2011 is no exception to the characteristics we’re coming …

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