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Age your wine for sublime taste experiences

As time works its magic on the wine in barrel and in bottle you will get incredibly rewarding flavor experiences. This is not for the impatient wine lover! Wine needs time to develop more flavors than what you get from the grape and from fermentation.  Aging wine in oak barrels will add and enhance additional flavor in wine such as butter, cedar, spice, nuts, raisin, and vanilla. We will explore how this happens in todays blog post.

Written by Katarina at West Wines

How to do a Vertical Tasting

One of the more fun wine tastings to do is a vertical tasting. It means that you use the same wine, i.e. the same varietal from the same vineyard from a number of different years. Invite a group of friends who like wine, they do not have to be experts, neither do you. You are actually about to learn a lot from tasting the same wine from different years and you can do it just for fun and notice the differences and enjoy the wines, or you can go about it more seriously and take notes, discuss and compare.

Written by Katarina at West Wines

First Harvest of our Dry Creek Valley Sparkling Wine

Excitement is in the air, as well as the smell of harvest. We kicked off our harvest early Friday morning with a crew of 10 people picking. The very first grapes we pick are Chardonnay for our sparkling Blanc de Blancs. And to illustrate how everything has come full circle, we just brought in grapes to start the sparkling process again.

Written by Katarina at West Wines

Sangiovese and Super Tuscan Wines

I am very fascinated by the wine you get from blending Cabernet Sauvignon and Sangiovese. These are two very different grapes with very different flavor profiles and instead of clashing they accentuate each other in a beautiful way. Sangiovese has a lighter fruitier strawberry nose which floats above the heavier blackberry and dark cherry of the Cabernet Sauvignon. The depth in the Cabernet with earthiness, cedar and laurel spices are not drowning out the Sangiovese which holds its own with its lighter vanilla spiciness. It reminds me of a duet between a soprano and a bass singer, you can hear each one distinctly since they sing at different frequencies.

Written by Katarina at West Wines

Creating a blend in the Bordeaux style

When making a blend the winemaker is like a chef, mixing the ingredients to create a balanced wine where all the flavors come together. There are a number of factors to play with: how you grow the grapes, how you ferment and age the different grape varietals, how you blend them, and of course the weather, which plays with us more than the other way around. To create a Bordeaux style wine you have five grapes to choose from. I like to start with Cabernet Sauvignon as my base ingredient.

Written by Katarina