(Anyone else care to send in a photo of a liquor-fueled tree? Glad whoever has this one did it at home!)
PARTY! PARTY! PARTY!
Dance the night away…
NEW YEAR’S EVE
Playing Oldies & Classic rock
$99.00 per person
(plus tax and gratuity)
~ 4-Course Dinner ~
Dinner Buffet Featuring:
Chef-Carved Black Angus Tenderloin of Beef, Chicken Rosemary, Shrimp Rigata with Chef’s Choice Vegetable and Potato
Includes One Bottle of Wine per Couple (selected by Victor)
Champagne Toast at Midnight
(Credit card required at time of reservation)
(Black tie optional)
Sorry, no refunds
-No one under 21 permitted in facility-
With the 2010 Session now one month away, MBBWL is gearing up for the battle 29 years in the making. Last week at a legislative priorities open forum with Speaker Mike Busch, Senate President Mike Miller thought it unlikely that wine shipping would pass this year. “Miller said he believed it will pass ‘sometime in the future,’ but not necessarily this session,” wrote the AP last week. At a minimum, he is aware of the noise we have been making this year, and ironically wine shipping was one of the pressing issues raised by audience members at the forum (in addition to possible tax increases, education funding and cuts to stem cell research). This is our one shot at getting this bill passed. We need your financial help to combat the moneyed liquor lobbyists this Session!
2010 will be our year. We have great press, support from the business community, approval from the Comptroller’s Office and thousands of engaged consumer supporters just like you. Most importantly, the legislation will have the endorsement of more Senators and Delegates than ever before. None of this will make a difference if key members of the Maryland General Assembly aren’t with us! We need to be relentless, putting pressure on those members that can break our chances. We are so close, but we cannot do it without your help.
No donation is too small. You’d be amazed what we can do with only $20. You can also send us a check to the address listed below if that is more convenient. We’re soon to start an aggressive voter engagement campaign that will be expensive but effective. During this holiday season, think about how next year you’ll be able to legally give or receive a bottle of wine and then give generously to MBBWL to allow that to happen.
Marylanders for Better Beer & Wine Laws
4315 Underwood Road
Baltimore, MD 21218
Tel: (443) 570-8102
Now a days everyone wants a great deal on wine…. Great holiday fare deserves some great wine! If you love wine check out these deals that your own personal wine consultant has found for you!! For those who collect or those who want to collect -This is the greatest time in 20 years to find amazing wines at unheard of prices…
…Stock on hand is limited so let me know if your interested! Prices quoted DO NOT INCLUDE TAX and/or SHIPPING
Joseph Phelps Cab 2006 no its not Insignia or Bacchus but this “value” Napa Cab is normally $50 a bottle and up…
Now $39 a bottle
Justin Isosceles 2003 & 2006 Central coast bordeaux blend. Arguably the best from the Central Coast normally $60 a bottle up
… Now $52 a bottle 2006 $57 a bottle 2003
Stags Leap “Fay” 2006 Cab – One of the first declared wine regions within Napa and one of Napa’s legendary Cab makers the Fay Cab is normally $70 a bottle up
Now just $55
Beringer private Rese Chardonnay 2007 is annually one of Napa best Chard’s often a critics favorite Bev Mo priced at $34.99 a bottle
Now just $27.50
Davis Bynum Pinot Noir 2007 is an awesome Russian River Pinot a critical fav from a soon to be classic Pinot Vintage. It’s a steal at $30 a bottle plus
Now just $24.50 a bottle
Faust 2006 Cab is the Second Lable for the famed Quintessa Cab – Critical fav and priced well when it’s $50 a bottle plus…
Now just $39 a bottle
Ferrari Carano Chardonnay 2006 – Big Chard lovers Chard… Critical fav and often priced $32 a bottle plus
Mt Veeder Cab 2006 is one a Napa great “value” Cabs normally $31 plus
Now just $28
Ferrari Carano – Prevail West Face 2005 is a Cab Syrah blend and is a beautiful rich red wine normally priced at $40 plus
Now $29.00 a bottle
Rodney Strong Russian River Pinot Noir 2008 – No its not the Reserve 07 Pinot that got the big score (and is $40 a bottle) but this is still a fantastic Pinot for everyday or even something special. Normally a steal at $20 plus
Now just $17.50
Chateau St Jean “Cinq Cepague” 2005/06 – THE primer red from this Sonoma Winery a critical fav and usually “value” priced below it’s big Napa Neighbors at $80 a bottle
Now just $35
Bogle Phantom 2006 – Do I need to remind you how great this wine is! A steall when priced around $20 a bottle
Now just $16.00
Oh yeah and for the price does not matter crowd here are few other finds to consider..
Opus One 2006 $151 – Bev Mo price $179.99
Caymus Sp Selection 2006 $98.50 Normally $159 plus
Beringer Private Reserve Cab 2005 96.5 Normally $124.99 plus
Have a great Holiday Season and if I can help out with a few wine finds… All the better for all of us
In Vino Veritas!
Wine & Spirit Specialist & Partner
24-Pinot Media LLC
(805) 217-4518 Ph
(805) 522-4337 Fax
Explore with us numerous regions of the world.. Get the shortcuts to navigate the world of wine with confidence, from the vineyards to your glass.. Discover and develop your personal wine style.. and unveil your inner epicurian! Come join us for a great time.. whether you’re a neophyte or a wine connoisseur..! From Jean-Baptiste@lawinetasting.com
Sat, Jan 9
Pinots Noirs from the World
Travel Burgundy vineyards, the birthplace of Pinot Noir, to New Zealand, Oregon and California. You will see how versatile a grape can be depending on the soil, the climate, the winemaker.. Learn what Terroir is, that sense of ‘somewhereness’.. and how important it is to think outside the glass!
Sat, Feb 6
Old World vs New World
Wine has been made for thousands of years! History, family traditions and Terroir have been shaping the world of wine in the Old World (France, Italy, Spain, Germany..). Flying winemakers, more modern wine-making techniques and ‘easier’ vintages have brought a very challenging wine-making industry in the New World (California, South America, Australia..). Learn to understand and enjoy the differences..!
Sat, Mar 6
Un Gout de Provence (a taste from Provence)
You’re hearing the crickets, smelling lavender, eating Ratatouille with a glass of Rose.. you might be in Provence! This time, stay in L.A and save on all travel expenses. We’ll take you on a tour of the most famous AOCs from the Cotes du Ventoux down to the vineyards facing the Mediterranean Sea. Enjoy whites, roses and reds from one of the most heavenly places in the world!
Sat, Apr 3
‘Un Je ne Sais Quoi’ from Burgundy
Burgundy winemaker Hubert de Montille in MondoVino (a must-see documentary on the world of wine by Jonathan Nossiter) says, ‘In Burgundy, it’s all about giving birth to vintages’. Learn about the ‘Laisser-Faire’ philosophy that makes Burgundy so unique. Taste some of the best AOCs (including some Premiers Crus) from Northern Cote de Nuits and Cote de Beaune to the Cote Chalonnaise and Macon. Ready for a voyage through history?
Sat, May 1
Wine Adventures in South America
The history of wine-making in South America rests largely on a single grape variety believed to have arrived in Argentina from Spain around 1557.. Thus it is considered the oldest wine-producing area in the New World. Explore vineyards from Argentina, Chili, Uruguay.. Taste wines made from grapes you might never have heard before!.. including Tannat, Bonarda, Carmenere, Torrontes..
Sat, Jun 5
Sophisticated Bordeaux: Right Bank vs Left Bank
If there is a wine-making region closest to Napa in style and winemaking techniques, it could be Bordeaux with its predominant oak barrel ageing (with a higher percentage of new oak each year) and sometimes, ‘Parkerized’ winestyles (fruit-forward and higher in alcohol).. Come and learn the difference in style between Merlot-driven Right-bank and Cabernet-ruled Left-Bank. Sample St Emilion Grand Cru, Lalande de Pomerol, Graves, Medoc.. among others!
These limited-size classes always sell out, register today to avoid disappointment! Each 2 hour-class will cover a vineyard exploration, to help you understand what makes these wine regions so special. You will taste wines that are particularly representative of each area. Each session includes 5 to 6 wines. Light appetizers will be served to accompany the wines, including artisan cheeses and other gourmet delicacies. Classes are limited in size for a great interactive, learning and fun atmosphere! Gift certificates available. http://www.lawinetasting.com/index.html
This bulletin is to inform you, the wine consumer, about the importance and ritual of service. Particularly wine service.
Part of the beauty of wine is the experience it brings. Not just the aroma, taste, texture or color. But also, the people you share it with, the place you consume it, the celebrations toasted with it. A fun part of the experience of wine, for many people, is the “Ritual of Service”. This is presentation of the wine, to the consumer, by wait staff or a sommelier at a restaurant.
This was the subject of a recent lecture in my Cultural Appreciation of Wine class.
There was a consensus by the class that excellent service begins with a “connection’ being made by the wait staff and the consumers. As Paul Wagner, my instructor stated, “The Consumers and Staff are all involved in a “Play”. For the “Play” to be successful, everyone just needs to understand their roles.”
That being said, the ritual of table service has it roots in the Roman dinners and Greek Symposia of 20 centuries ago. (You can read more about Greek Symposiums in my early blogs.)
As many of us know, ordering wine is only just slightly less scary that speaking in public. We are on the spot. The choice has to be right. Will that Chardonnay that is slightly oaked and that has just a slight hint of old dusty burlap go well with the asparagus Auntie Flem ordered?
How do we choose who orders the wine for the table? is it:
Everyone leaves to use the facilities. The one person left at the table is shouldered with that responsibility.
Give it to the person who looks the most knowledgeable.
The best dressed person
The person who has the most money
Heck, let’s just put the wine list in the middle of the table and draw straws.
And of course, you drew the short straw. But you, smart reader, know what you are doing, right?
Because you think that slightly oaked Chardonnay that has just a slight hint of dusty burlap goes well with, not only Auntie Flem’s asparagus, but the rest of the diner’s meals, you go ahead and order it.
Now starts the Ritual of Table Service. Places, everyone!
The wait person (notice how politically correct I am? That is so unlike me.) presents the bottle of 2005 Golden Calf Chardonnay from Bakersfield you ordered. Yes, the one that got 68 points from Robert Parker. You are a shrewd oenophile, aren’t you?
The presentation is important. The bottle is held, tilted slight backward and supported at the bottom by the server. The label is facing toward you. Look to make sure the vintage is the same 2005 as your ordered.
Nod your head in approval of the wine.
The server cuts the foil with their wine opener. A proper wine opener has 4 main parts. A handle, a foil knife, a corkscrew and a lever, preferably a hinged, two piece lever.
The foil is cut just BELOW the collar of the wine bottle. Several reasons why. The foil will not touch and contaminate the wine. The wile will not be unduly aerated by running over the edge of the cut foil. Drips are mitigated by this cut position as well.
A property server always holds the bottle, label facing the customer, through this oenological surgery.
The server then deftly and swiftly slips the piece of foil into a pocket. Preferably their own.
With one hand, the server closes the foil knife tool and opens the corkscrew.
The corkscrew is started at a 45 degree angle, into the cork. As the corkscrew bites into the top of the cork, the corkscrew is straightened so that it goes straight down into the cork. The screw is turned until it breaks through the bottom of the cork. this relieves the vacuum in the seal, making the cork easier to pull out.
The lever is seated on the rim of the bottle and the end of the handle is pulled upward. If physics are properly, the cork will be pulled out.
Just in case you needed to know, this lever action is called a “Second Class Lever”. In a second class lever the input effort is located at the end of the bar and the fulcrum is located at the other end of the bar, opposite to the input, with the output load at a point between these two forces.
This all just means “Use the corkscrew properly.”
The cork is unscrewed from the corkscrew and is NOT given to the patron. The cork should just be set on the table. There is no need to smell the cork. Normally one smells the cork to detect a bad cork. Simply tasting the wine will tell you this, if it is indeed the case.
With one hand, the wait person folds the corkscrew and slips it into a pocket.
Again, preferably their own.
Now,you get a 1 ounce pour of your 2005 Golden Calf Chardonnay from Bakersfield. Yes, your 68 pointer.
Look for flaws his point. Is the wine corked? Is it what you ordered? Is it being served at the proper temperature?
If your wine is indeed what your expectation was, then approve the bottle and the wait person will pour for the table.
Enjoy that Bako 2005 Chard.
Anthony Blackburn is a student at Napa Valley College in the Viticulture and Winery Technology Department. He is also the Student Sales and Marketing Intern responsible for selling the wines made by the students in the student winery. www.napavalley.edu/winery Student of the Grape at Napa Valley College Soccer Player (Goal Keeper) Wine Maker (In my own mind) Facebook Ho (Friend Me!) Motorcycle Rider (Kawasaki ZZR1200)
World Wine Education presents “Happy Hour of Wine” that will be held at Embassy Suites in Valencia. The wine will be flowing from 5:00pm-7:30pm on Thursday December 17, 2009. The price is $20 per person. Come and join them for an evening of fun and shake off the Holiday madness for a couple hours. This is a premiere party of who World Wine Education is and the 2010 classes that they will be offering.
Embassy Suites Hotel is right off the 5 freeway on Newhall Ranch Road. The Lobby is immaculate with a Waterfall Partition in front of the reception desk at the entrance of the hotel. This is the first and last thing a guest will see when checking-in or checking-out of the hotel. Embassy Suites is a beautiful contemporary hotel that is the perfect setting for the “Happy Hour of Wine” event.
World Wine Education will be showcasing their 2010 wine classes. February 2010 classes will be held at the Residence Inn by Marriott. March 2010 classes will be held at Embassy Suites. Both locations are lovely and welcoming.
There are different types of classes that World Wine Education will be offering that is structured to all levels of beginner to advanced. Classes recommended for beginners and experienced wine lovers are the fun light-hearted wine classes that will teach the basics of what a student wants to know about wine. The five options for those classes are 1. Basic Wine Tasting; 2. Short-cuts to Understanding Wine; 3. Introduction to Wines; 4. Blind Tasting Made Simple; and 5. Your Day to Ask Questions About Wine.
The other classes that World Wine Education will be offering are the world renowned WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust) classes. WSET was founded in 1969 to provide high quality education and training in wines and spirits. WSET classes are the foundation for anyone wishing to be a Sommelier. At the end of these classes the student will receive a WSET Certification that is recognized worldwide. To find out more, please visit www.wsetglobal.com.
The “Happy Hour of Wine” event will give Santa Clarita a chance to get to know DiMaggio Washington and Alisha Maines of World Wine Education. There will also be opportunities to sign up for the 2010 classes at a discounted rate. Put the Holiday shopping on hold for a couple hours and stop by for a drink. You might even discover the perfect wine for your Holiday dinner!
World Wine Education is an educational company about the world of wine. The company’s Sommelier, DiMaggio Washington and Event Coordinator, Alisha Maines, facilitate anything from events to world recognized certification courses, such as, Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET). “Educating the world one glass at a time.” To find out more, please visit www.worldwineeducation.com.
For more information about Embassy Suites in Valencia, CA; please visit www.embassyvalencia.com.
Welcome to the Winery at Napa Valley College!
You are now part of the very first bonded winery at a community college in California. You will be among the very first people to hear about the release of our wines as well as about events and special tastings at our winery.
All of our wines are made from grapes grown on our own 6 acre vineyard located on the campus of Napa Valley College. We look forward to keeping you informed about our fine collection of wines and about how you can purchase your favorite varietals.
Thank you again for your interest and for joining our mailing list.
Dr. Steven Krebs and Mr. Brian Avila
Napa Valley College Winery
Napa Valley College Winery | 2277 Napa-Vallejo Highway | Napa | CA | 94558
And from me:
I joined the mailing list because Tony told me to. I’m looking forward to getting even more information, and wine, from Napa Valley College as…well…I love Tony. I have thoroughly enjoyed learning all about his viticulture class without staining my own fingertips in wine. I can’t wait for my first e-mail…and my first sip! I challenge local vintners, and wine 101ers alike, to have a bottle of wine – that he made with his classmates – while reading one of his articles. We may not be able to get to Napa, or to school, but we can learn. We can always learn.
You may remember the full post I wrote about Valencia Wine Company’s Holiday Wine Event in the West Ranch Beacon last month. (http://westranchbeacon.com/blog/2009/11/eve%E2%80%99s-wine-101-valencia-wine-co-annual-holiday-tasting-2009/)
I was very impressed with the dozen cold Sake’s introduced for the first time in Santa Clarita at a wine tasting event. I found the company on Facebook and asked for more information for my wine 101 readers:
Banzai Beverage sakes can now be found in the finest wine shops and restaurants in Los Angeles. The newest trend in beverages currently sweeping through New York, Las Vegas, Chicago and Miami has finally hit our town and gathering fans like Paris Hilton, Vivica Fox and Adam Corolla along the way.
Banzai Beverage has emerged as the unsurpassed importer of specialty and craft brewed sake. The company was founded in 2003 by Takahiro Tokura, with the vision of introducing the finest Japanese sake into the American mainstream market. His goal is to bring the absolute best to the US that until now had not been available. Banzai Beverage exclusively imports hand crafted sake from small family owned microbreweries that would have otherwise never considered their products for export. Many of these breweries are centuries old and have remained in the same family for ten to 12 generations.
Mr. Tokura travels throughout Japan constantly to personally select premium sake that has the flavor, aroma and texture to compete with the world’s best wines. For this reason, it is an injustice to our premium sake to be confined only to the typical sushi bar. This is why our sake is currently enjoyed without these conventional boundaries and paired with anything from traditional American steaks to contemporary French cuisine.
It is our unique vision that keeps Banzai Beverage at the forefront of the new sake drinking generation.
Banzai Beverage Company
22750 Hawthorne Blvd. Ste 212
Torrance, CA 90505
Phone (310) 373-8504
Fax (310) 373-8507
“As long as the wine breathes, most anything works as a decanter so it’s nice to do something a little different.” John Nugent, Colorado Wine Company, says of the unique decanter pictured here. (photo credit to Gary Mecija)
The Geekanter Returns! Wine nerd or not, everyone secretly wants a 2000ml Kimax Beaker as a wine decanter. Put this puppy on your dinner table and it either says “I am a complete freak about measuring how much wine I pour you” OR, “I’m nerd chic and don’t need to spend $500 on a crystal decanter just to let my wine breathe.” $39.99/beaker http://www.cowineco.com/
I make no secret of it. I want this beaker. And, I’ll also admit I’m the first to notice if you have a millimeter more wine in your glass than I do. Even if I just hide it in my kitchen to measure, or decant when I really don’t have to, no longer will I be a slave to making quips such as,
“You have more.”
“You always have more.”
“Maybe you should let me pour it?”
“Why does your friend get more than I do?”
“What do I have to do to get more?”
“Why is it always that answer? Sheesh.”