Monday, November 20, 2017

California Wine Club

"Since 1990, we’ve been delivering monthly wine club adventures to thousands of wine club members across the country. The majority of our wine club members have been with us for 7 years or more. There are no membership fees; just pay as you go and cancel any time. Try us for a month or two and see what you think!

With five wine of the month club levels to choose from, we have wine selections and wine gifts to suit all tastes and budgets. Keep in mind, there is no reason you can’t subscribe to all five - many of our members enjoy multiple wine club levels!" - California Wine Club

As a member of the California Wine Club, you will receive hand selected wines from real working family wineries. Your Personal Wine Consultant is available to help you discover delicious wines and if you're not happy, the Love It Guarantee allows you to cancel at any time. Along with the wine, you will get entertaining stories of the wineries that provide them. You can also reorder your favorite wines at up to 50% off!

With 5 different wine club levels, you have option on what kinds of wines, how many bottles per month, and how much you'd like to spend.

Sign up to be a member of the California Wine Club at AWineryReview.com! Just click the icon at the bottom of our page!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Flora Springs - Napa Valley Family Estate

"Flora Springs was founded in 1978, but our legacy dates back to the late 1800s when wine grapes were first planted on the Napa Valley property that is now our estate home. The depth of this history reminds us that as stewards of this land, our family’s commitment to its health and vitality will be felt far into the future." - Flora Springs

Founded by Jerry and Flora Komes nearly 40 years ago, Flora Springs winery in Napa Valley contains over 500 acres, with 300 acres being vineyards. With their high expectations, the family run winery is focused on quality. They use a small percentage of their yield for their own wines and supply other local wineries with the rest of their grapes. Their properties are located all over the area, including Carneros, St. Helena, and Oakville. To find all of their vineyard locations, click here.

"Our family’s goal is to over-deliver on every aspect of our business, particularly when it comes to the quality and consistency of our wines. As farmers and winemakers, our dedication to quality begins in the vineyards and continues through every aspect of winemaking.” - General Manager, Nat Komes

Through listening to customers and tasting wine, Flora Springs has honed their palate to create the best quality wines available. They keep up with new vineyard technology, equipment, and barrels to fulfill their pledge to "over-deliver" wine quality.

For more information on the amazing Flora Springs, visit their website.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Did You Know? Wine Facts

There are so many facts about wine that are little known. For example, did you know that grapes are commonly referred to as "fruit," but they are actually classified as a berry? Here are some more of our favorites facts:

• The earliest known traces of wine are from China (c. 7000 BC), Georgia (c. 6000 BC), Iran (c. 5000 BC), and Sicily (c. 4000 BC) [1]

• In the United States, for a wine to be vintage-dated and labeled with a country of origin or American Viticultural Area (AVA; e.g., Sonoma Valley), 95% of its volume must be from grapes harvested in that year [1]

• The UK was the world's largest importer of wine in 2007 [1]

• Most wines are sold in glass bottles and sealed with corks (50% of which come from Portugal) [1]

• The world’s biggest red wine consumers are the Chinese [2]

• Wine Names Usually Indicate Location or Grape Varieties [2]

• Women get drunk faster from wine because of their water to fat ratio [2]

• Grape skin is especially rich in antioxidants [2]

• Red Wines are well attributed to positive health benefits. It lowers your chances of having a stroke compared to nondrinkers. For men and women who drink moderately, it lessens their chance of developing Type 2 diabetes by 30% [3]

• “Oenophobia” is the fear of wine [3]

• Wine glasses should be held by the stem as to not raise the temperature of the wine with your hand [3]

• Wine bottles are generally stored on their side so the cork doesn't dry out [3]

• Wine contains no fat and no cholesterol [3]

• To get the same amount of antioxidants you find in wine, you would need to drink 20 glasses of apple juice or seven glasses of orange juice [3]

• The Romans are believed to be the first to call different grape varieties by different names [4]

• There are more than 8,000 grape varieties known to scientists, and more than 1,300 varieties are currently used to make wine around the world [4]

• Research shows that white wines keep lung tissues healthy [4]

• White wines generally have less alcohol and fewer calories than reds [4]

• Grapes grown in warmer climates, like the Napa Valley, are usually more ripe when picked, making for sweeter wines [4]

• California is the fourth-largest wine producer in the world, just behind France, Italy, and Spain [4]

• The first aromas to hit the nose are associated with aspects of the grapes, while later aromas are connected to the winemaking process and how the wine aged [4]

• Some wineries will print food suggestions on the wine’s label [4]


Monday, October 30, 2017

Update on California Fires

Our thoughts have been with those effected by the fires in California over the past few weeks. At least 42 people's lives have been claimed by the fires and more than a dozen are still missing. Our hearts go out to their families and friends. 8,900 structures have been destroyed and it will take a lot of support and time to rebuild all that's been lost. Burned out properties are being surveyed for hazardous waste by federal officials. This process was started this week as some of the first steps towards recovery. As Santa Rosa's mayor, Chris Coursey said, "It’s going to be a really long haul."

According to Cal Fire Officials, the Atlas Fire, which is one of the region's four major fires, has fortunately been contained as of Friday night. The other three major fires are 97% contained as of Saturday afternoon. Isolated hot spots are still an issue but the worst is over.

A ceremony honoring the victims was held on Saturday on a Santa Rosa football field. A fire bell was rung 43 times. 42 for those lost and once again for those still missing. “This was an important opportunity for the community to get together and not be talking just about how I get the ash off my property,” Coursey said. “It was a time to pause collectively and just kind of take a breath.” Governor Jerry Brown of Sacramento has proclaimed flags to be flown at half staff over the state capital. 

"As of Saturday, more than 150,000 acres had burned across Sonoma, Napa and Solano Counties: 51,624 acres in the Atlas fire, 56,556 acres in the Nuns fire, 36,807 acres in the Tubbs Fire, and 17,357 acres in the Pocket Fire." - The Mercury News

Please join us in helping those impacted by donating to the fire victims! You can donate here through the American Red Cross. Thank you!

Monday, October 23, 2017

Wine Themed Halloween Costumes

Halloween is fast approaching! With this one-of-a-kind holiday comes parties, events, and dinners with ghosts, goblins, and vampires. You can either buy your costume or make your own; however, some do-it-yourself costumes can take weeks to put together and at this point you're quickly running out of time. Lucky for you, we've put together this list of easy, last minute costumes that also happen to be themed around one of our favorite things... WINE!

Boxed Wine
This awesome costume is super easy to make last minute. Just cut out holes in a box for your waist, head, and arms. Then print out a boxed wine label and tape it to the box. You can go the extra mile by adding a spout!

A Bunch of Grapes
One of our favorite costumes is also one of the easiest to create! Just blow up a bunch of purple or green balloons and voila!... you're a bunch of grapes!

Bacchus was the Roman God of Wine. Re-create his look with a sheet, some leaves and grapes, and a bottle of wine. It doesn't get any easier than that!

A Bottle of Red Wine
This costume is as easy as wearing all burgundy, making a cork hat out of paper, and taping your favorite red wine's label to a piece of cardboard. You can even carry around your inspiration (we won't judge if you drink the whole bottle)!

Be sure to have fun this Halloween and don't drink and drive!

Monday, October 16, 2017

Is Wine Gluten Free?

Gluten is a protein that's found in wheat, cereals, and grains. Many people these days suffer an immune reaction to gluten, commonly known as coeliac disease, where they experience abdominal problems from consuming gluten. This prevents many people from drinking beer, which is brewed with grains. Since wine, however, is made from grapes and contains less than 20 parts per million of gluten, it is generally considered gluten free.

There are a couple instances in which gluten can come in contact with wine such as ageing and fining. It is very uncommon these days, but some wine makers use a flour based paste to seal the wine barrels which can contaminate the wine during ageing. The process which filters out unwanted particles from the wine to make it clear is called fining. Gelatin and isinglass are the most commonly used agents during the fining process but this causes issues to those who want vegetarian or vegan wine. To create vegetarian or vegan wine, gluten can be used instead, but this causes issues for coeliac sufferers. After the fining process, centrifuge can be used to remove the gluten but this is costly and the amount of gluten present is usually very minuscule.

The good news for those effected by coeliac disease is that it's pretty safe to consume all the delicious wine they want! Any wine that's produced with higher than the legal requirement in the UK and the US (20 parts per million gluten) would have to alert buyers on the bottle's label.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Enjoy the Fire

Sitting next to a fire while dining, drinking wine, or just relaxing is a great way to unwind and enjoy yourself and Napa Valley offers many locations with the perfect fire-side atmosphere. A lot of lodging in the area offer rooms with fireplaces and/or outdoor fireplaces to warm up next to. Here are some beautiful fireplaces you should visit:

Hotels that offer fireplaces in your room

Where to sit outside by the fire
• Cosentino

Where to dine next to a fireplace