June 2, 2012 |
It's a fine time for rosé, and where better to find one than from the French Mediterranean. A perfect summer wine, Domaine Ferrer Ribière "F" Rosé from the Côtes Catalanes, is primarily Grenache with some Syrah in the blend. It's pale pink and tastes of rose petals and wild herbs. A fine rosé at a modest price. Region: Languedoc-Roussillon Price: About $11 Style: Dry and aromatic What it goes with: Omelets, vegetable or fish soups, shrimp with garlic, grilled fish Where to find it: K&L Wine Merchants in Hollywood, (323)
May 24, 2012
STAGE Long before "Sideways" was a hit Alexander Payne movie, it was an adored novel by Rex Pickett. Now it gets a stage treatment in this adaptation of the story of two guys cruising through wine country as they confront the rest of their adulthood. Ruskin Group Theatre, 3000 Airport Ave., Santa Monica. Fri.-July 8. $25. ruskingrouptheatre.com.
May 24, 2012 |
A weeklong road trip through the Santa Ynez Valley wine country drives two middle-aged buddies to unexpected tests of both their varietal and moral palates in “Sideways: The Play.” Adapted by Rex Pickett from his novel (which also spawned the 2004 hit movie), their oenophilial odyssey makes an enjoyable if at times leisurely debut in its stage incarnation at Ruskin Group Theatre. In the comic misadventures of his narrative stand-in, the perpetually unpublished author Miles (John Colella)
December 12, 2011 |
Pedal to vineyards and medieval towns in northern Spain on a seven-day bicycle tour of La Rioja. The rural countryside, villages and castles in the foothills of the Pyrenees are the stars of this trip, which features easy hikes and five to 30 miles a day on a bike (easy to slightly difficult terrain). The trip begins and ends in Pamplona and stops at Puente La Reina, a winery in Olite, to sample Spanish wines, the castle and town of Ujue, Calahorra, a church in Laguardia, Santo Domingo de la Calzada, the hill town of Ezcaray and more.
August 31, 2011 |
Remote bays and elegant dining meet on this small-ship Tasmania Food & Wine cruise by Adventure Smith Explorations . The six-day trip explores Australia's island state with two November sailings. Tour the wine-producing region of Launceston, hike on remote Flinders Island, stop at scenic bays in Freycinet National Park and visit the former penal settlement of Port Arthur on this itinerary. When: Cruises leave from Tasmania, Australia, on Nov. 7 and 26. Price: $2,370 to $4,961 per person, depending on cabin choice; price is based on double occupancy.
June 23, 2011
2009 Domaine Chignard Fleurie 'Les Moriers' If the only Beaujolais you've ever encountered is Beaujolais Nouveau and you've never tasted a Beaujolais cru, then this is the wine to make you fall head over heels for the region. Unfined and unfiltered, Domaine Chignard's Fleurie "Les Moriers" from the great 2009 vintage carries the scent of wild sweet strawberries. It's so lush and vivid, tasting of blueberries, black cherries and plums. The vines average 60 years old, so this is some deep fruit underpinned with soft tannins.
HOME & GARDEN
May 9, 2011 |
A 40-acre equestrian estate built in the 1980s by actor Jack Klugman has come on the market in Temecula at $8,299,000. Called Hacienda de Endar and designed as a thoroughbred breeding and training facility, the property is set in Riverside County wine country and includes an 8,902-square-foot main house, guest houses, a five-hole golf course, a tennis court and a swimming pool with spa. The Spanish-style main house has four bedrooms and...
April 14, 2011 |
There are signs the American economy is improving, at least as far as wine shops are concerned. But if you think that means a return to the glory days of $150 cult Cabernets ... well, not so fast. Instead, most wine store owners, far from declaring business as back to normal, are describing a new normal, one in which the high-margin sales of wines in the $50 to $150 range are difficult -- indeed, some would say they're almost a thing of the past. To an overwhelming degree, retail customers are spending less for a bottle of wine than they did two years ago. In 2009, we wrote in these pages that, in terms of a sales sweet spot, $25 was the new $40. If anything, that median is trending further downward in 2011.
March 24, 2011 |
I poured this wine for a French friend and he laughed when he looked at the label. "You know what jaja means? It's French slang for everyday wine. " That I didn't know, but it perfectly suits this bottle of red from Yakima Valley's Maison Bleue. It's a 50-50 blend of Grenache and Syrah from a well-regarded wine estate focused on Rhone varietals, and, at less than $20, it's a great buy for a wine with this much character. Sniff it, swirl it, the 2009 Jaja red (there's also a white version)
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.