August 7, 2011 |
I am standing atop Clay Head, a 70-foot-high bluff, looking over miles and miles of open ocean on a clear summer morning. It is an ideal way to greet a day that will include hiking, biking, birding, skimming stones and eating my weight in fried clams. And I have to smile. Back home in St. Louis, my wife, Nancy, and I had told a friend that we were heading for three days on this glorious island. Blank stare. "Block Island. Where is that?" Exactly. And fine with me if Block keeps a low pro. For all its craggy grandeur, Block Island has never been etched into the nation's consciousness quite like its big sisters Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket in Massachusetts.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 6, 2011 |
In the next 30 years, high-value vineyards in California could shrink by 50% because of global warming, according to a Stanford University study released last week. Scientists applied scenarios from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in a computer model and found that Napa and Santa Barbara counties could experience 10 more very hot days — 95 degrees or higher — during the growing season. As a result, the amount of grape-growing land is projected to decline over the next three decades, the authors wrote.
June 30, 2011 |
Mount Eden Vineyards Estate Chardonnay is consistently one of the finest from California. But this one from the winery's Saratoga line — designed to showcase the Santa Cruz Mountain terroir — is a real find at this price. The fruit is right there in the first sip. Light on the oak, the 2007 Saratoga Chardonnay carries a gentle lilt of citrus and a touch of anise. Like its big brother, it is Burgundian in style, grace in a glass. Bring it to a dinner party as a ringer: It could be mistaken for a very expensive bottle.
June 24, 2011 |
It's not quite up there with former Countrywide boss Angelo Mozilo's $67.5-million settlement, but regulators have fined another former Southland banker for alleged misconduct during the housing boom. Norman A. Morales, the former president and chief executive of Vineyard National Bank, has agreed to fork over a $25,000 money penalty to bank regulators who accused him of having the Corona-based lender pay personal expenses. He didn't admit or deny wrongdoing in signing the settlement last month, according to the consent order with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.
May 29, 2011 |
Caleb's Crossing A Novel Geraldine Brooks Viking: 306 pp., $ 26.95 Now say, have women worth? Or have they none? Or had they some, but with our Queen, is't gone?… Let such as say our sex is void of reason, Know 'tis a slander now, but once was treason. Anne Bradstreet, "In Honor of That High and Mighty Princess, Queen Elizabeth," 1643 "Caleb's Crossing" begins with a confession and ends with resignation — with the happy surrender that the Puritans were famous for even though it bore little resemblance to the arrogance the same settlers often showed Native Americans.
March 3, 2011 |
Like most outsiders who get into the wine business, Mark Tarlov, the guiding force behind Evening Land Vineyards, had much to learn about the ins and outs of running a winery. So he surrounded himself with smart people, learned the lessons he needed to learn and then, almost immediately, seemed to forget them. Instead of one winery, for example, Tarlov now has three, in two states (Oregon and California) and on two continents (the U.S. and France). He makes mostly Pinot Noir and Chardonnay ?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 16, 2011 |
Patty Bogle, who with her husband Chris built Bogle Vineyards from 18 acres of grapes in the Sacramento delta into a regional wine powerhouse, died Friday at her home in Clarksburg, Calif., of complications from leukemia. She was 59. After marrying in 1973, Patty and Chris Bogle tended vineyards of Petite Sirah and Chenin Blanc grapes planted by Chris and his father, Warren Bogle Sr., in Clarksburg, 14 miles south of Sacramento in Yolo County. The Bogles first sold their grapes to wineries and founded their family winery in 1979.
February 10, 2011
2009 Grey Stack Syrah-Grenache 'The Folly' Greywacke Vineyard The second release of "The Folly," a Rhône-style Syrah-Grenache blend from Grey Stack in Sonoma County, is a stunner. The two grapes blend seamlessly into a lush, velvety red, redolent of blackberries and wild herbs with just a touch of smoke. Layered and complex, the 2009 is a great example of a California Rhône, this one made from grapes grown at Greywacke Vineyard in the Russian River Valley. This bottle shows its best with hearty braised meats and stews.
February 10, 2011 |
It's hard to pronounce, and it can make wines that smell gamy. But Mourvèdre just might be the best grape grown in Paso Robles, one of California's hottest wine regions. Mourvèdre (more-VEH-dra) has strong endorsements from two leaders of the region. Tablas Creek's French founders chose Paso Robles for their first American winery in large measure because they saw it as ideal for Mourvèdre. And Justin Smith, owner of Saxum, says Mourvèdre is the grape that got him into Rhône-style wines in the first place.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 18, 2010 |
Alison Wrigley Rusack stepped off the porch of an old house on a private ranch on the rugged southwestern edge of Santa Catalina Island, where her clan once raised Arabian horses. Under sunny skies, she cast an appraising eye at the surrounding peaks, lush ravines and aging structures of El Rancho Escondido. It was a favorite family gathering place, passed down by her great-grandfather, chewing gum magnate William Wrigley Jr., who bought Santa Catalina Island Co. ? which owns all the developable land on the island ?