Italian Beauties

Italian Beauties

There was time in my younger days when a press and trade tasting in San Francisco was a small affair. The press, usually 10 to 15 wine writers, were treated to a quiet hour or so to make our notes in peace, before the trade were let in. In those days (1980s to early...
Pinot Precision

Pinot Precision

Once again there was an embarrassment of riches among the many excellent Pinot Noir offerings at the May 2016 SLH Gala. Pinots from the Santa Lucia Highlands tend to be bigger and bolder than their Burgundian counterparts, darker and denser and milder in their...
Venice Drinking

Venice Drinking

The truism “you can’t get a bad meal in Italy” takes a beating in Venice, sad to say. Venice scores low in fine dining, and it’s inevitable. Ninety-nine percent of visitors have one meal and never return, and that doesn’t inspire restaurateurs to always do their best....
Roero- The Road Less Traveled

Roero- The Road Less Traveled

Vineyards near Canale (Photo ©Tom Hyland) Piemonte is a region known for its wines, especially the great Nebbiolo-based reds Barolo and Barbaresco, iconic wines produced from vineyards not far from the town of Alba in the Langhe district. Journalists expound the...
Rhônes Rule in Oakland

Rhônes Rule in Oakland

  Fifteen northern California wineries recently showcased their Rhône style wines for aficionados in—where else—Oakland! Syrah, Petite Sirah, Mourvèdre, Grenache, Carignane, Roussane, Counoise in red varietals and Viognier, the prime Rhône white, strutted their...