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Monday, August 13, 2018

Preparing Your Palate For Wine Tasting

Wine tasting is more than just gulping down one mouthful of wine after another. In order to get the full experience of wine tasting it's helpful to prepare your palate. This allows you the opportunity to really appreciate each wine's flavors and textures. Here are some tips on how you can prepare for your next wine tasting.


Before your tasting, try to avoid eating or drinking anything that has a strong flavor. Things like coffee, tobacco, and garlic can linger on your palate and change the taste of wine. Try to stick to weaker flavors before you taste so you can get the full flavor of the wine without the influence of other foods. Something you may not have thought about that also has a strong flavor is toothpaste, so try to avoid wine tasting directly after brushing your teeth.

Tasting before a meal is a good way to prepare your palate. Your taste buds are more receptive before you eat than after. However, keep in mind that if you taste on an empty stomach you will be more apt to feel the effects of the alcohol so eat before your tasting, but not directly before.

Be conscious of the order in which you taste your wines for the best experience. It may be beneficial to taste dry to sweet, as the sugar in sweet wines tends to stick to your palate and effect the taste of the dry wines. Heavy, tannic red wines can also tire out your palate quicker than sweet whites. 

Drinking water frequently while tasting can also help refresh your mouth and give you the best tasting experience. On top of the tasting benefit, drinking water will also keep you hydrated and help to counter the alcohol so you can taste more without a hindered perception.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Andrea's Hidden Cottage - Sonoma County, California

"Owned and operated by the Tommasi Family since 1996, our charming one bedroom cottage is hidden in our secluded, historic vineyard where natural beauty, peace and privacy are yours to enjoy for a romantic weekend getaway or summer long vacation. 

Andrea's Hidden Cottage is located on Spain Street next to the San Francisco Solano Mission. It is tucked away yet own steps from the historic Sonoma Plaza, the largest town square in California and home to many colorful wine country gift shops and award winning restaurants and tasting rooms. We invite you to enjoy a wonderful, romantic stay and a good night's rest at Andrea's Hidden Cottage in the Wine Country. Like a good cabernet sauvignon, our vacation cottage only gets better with age." - Andrea's Hidden Cottage

If you're looking for a peaceful, relaxing location to stay while you visit wine country, Andrea's Hidden Cottage is the perfect place! The private cottage offers a personal atmosphere where you can unwind and feel right at home. It still includes basic luxuries like a kitchenette, patio, private bath, and off street parking.


With affordable rates and a number of included amenities, call Andrea's Hidden Cottage today for a perfect wine country getaway!



Monday, July 30, 2018

Vèraison - What it Means

In a previous post we mentioned that grape vines go through the process of vèraison during mid to late summer. Vèraison is one of the most important processes a grape vine goes through during it's annual life cycle. It is when the grapes ripen and go from green to pink, purple, and red. During this time the grapes also sweeten. White grapes also go through this process; however, they turn more transparent instead of turning colors.


Starting in late July (northern hemisphere) or late January (southern hemisphere) the grape vine starts concentrating more on making sweet grapes. Once vèraison starts it takes about 30-70 days for the grapes to reach the point where they're ready to make wine. 

Before vèraison the grapes are hard, small, and acidic. They are high in chlorophyll which gives them their green color. They start to transfer their energy into the grapes instead of the vine when vèraison starts. Replacing the chlorophyll with anthocyanins in red grapes, carotenoids in white grapes, sugars, and other nutrients, the vines rapidly grow in size and begin to develop aromas. This is also when the acid levels fall and the sugar levels rise in the grapes until they are perfectly balanced.

Some varieties of grapes a prone to ripening unevenly causing some grapes on the bunch to be ripe and ready to harvest while other grapes on the same bunch are still green. This is called millerandage. This produces wines that smell sweet but taste "green," or unbalanced. Some wines that are made with uneven grapes include Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Malbec, Gewürztraminer, and Zinfandel and are some of the hardest grapes to grow.

Monday, July 23, 2018

The Annual Lifecyle of Grape Vines

Grapes have a very unique and interesting annual life cycle. They start off growing in the spring, bloom throughout the summer, then become dormant in the winter. They are perennials so they naturally grow each year without having to be replanted; however, they require pruning to help maintain organization.

When a vine is first planted it is not expected to produce fruit right away. Actually, flower clusters that grow within the first couple years are generally cut off to allow the plant to put all of it's energy into the vine. This process produces strong root systems and overall better vines. It's not until around the vine's third year is when it becomes ready to produce quality grapes that are good for making wine. However, it could take up to 30 years for a vine to mature and be considered "old vines."

Winter - Each winter the vines are pruned to allow the strongest canes to grow the following spring.

Spring - During the spring, the buds begin to emerge. They are very fragile when they first sprout but they get stronger as they grow.

Did You Know?: Grapevine flowers are called "Perfect Flowers" because they don't need bees to pollinate. They pollinate themselves!

Summer - In the summer months the clusters that will eventually become berry bunches begin to appear.

Mid-Late Summer - Mid to late summer is when the berries begin to ripen. This is when vérasion (the onset of ripening) happens. During this time the vineyards are so beautiful as the grapes turn from green to pinks and purples. 

Note: During vérasion some pruners remove some of the green bunches to allow the nutrients to concentrate on the remaining grapes to make them stronger. This is called "Green Harvesting."

Fall - When fall arrives the vine wood has turned brown and hardened. At the same time the grapes are ripening and their sugar levels are rising. When they reach their sweet spot in the fall they are harvested. 

Did You Know?: Grapes do not continue to ripen after they are picked.

Late Fall - After the harvest and when the vines stop producing the leaves lose their color and fall off. When winter returns the vines are again pruned and the process starts all over.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Easy Way to Understand Tannins in White Vs. Red Wines

"Tannins are a class of astringent, polyphenolic biomolecules that bind to and precipitate proteins and various other organic compounds including amino acids and alkaloids." - Wikipedia

Tannin is a popular word in the wine industry and it may be a bit hard to understand at first. Red wines are generally higher in tannins than white and that's part of the reason the majority of red wines are dry instead of sweet.

Here is an easier explanation:

Have you ever peeled the skin off a grape? It has a flavor that strips the moisture from your mouth (it's dry). The reason for this is the tannins that are in the skin. Since red wines are produced with more contact with the grape skins, they absorb more of that dryness. Due to this extended time of contact with the skins, the wine is also transformed from clear to red in color.

Working as a natural antioxidant which protects the wine, tannins are a direct reason for certain red wines to be so age worthy (like Cabernet Sauvignon). They also have many health benefits!

Monday, July 9, 2018

Cosentino Winery - Napa Valley, California

"Delicious wines. Friendly staff. Charming place to gather.

Deeply rooted in California winemaking and ideally situated on the St. Helena Highway, Cosentino Winery is THE place to relax, sip and savor the distinctive varietals of Napa and Lodi. With nearly 40 years of experience crafting and sharing our wines, we are dedicated to creating experiences that leave a lasting impression.

Join us for a flight on our scenic sundrenched patio, drop-in for a tasting at our casual bar, or reserve a private experience in THE Lounge — with plenty of ways to enjoy Cosentino, we invite you to plan your trip today." - Cosentino Winery


Distinguished for their Bordeaux inspired blend, Cosentino Winery set the standard for wine making in Napa. Their dedication to quality wines over the last 35 years still stands strong and Marty Petersen (Vice President, Winemaking Operations, Vintage Wine Estates, Winemaker, Cosentino Winery) keeps that enthusiasm alive today. With a family history rich in farming, he has the knowledge and commitment to wine making that few others can compare to. Marty's skill is backed up by his proficiency on the cellar side of wine making through his education at Fresno State University where he earned his Bachelor of Sciences in Enology.

"Located at the “Gateway” to the Napa Valley, Cosentino’s tasting room and its ivy-covered façade is one of Napa Valley’s most recognized properties in the highly regarded appellation of Oakville.

Cosentino is ideal for a first or last stop or impulse visit when headed to Mustard’s Grill or photo opportunity by the landmark Napa Barrel sign.

In 2015, construction was completed on a beautiful new patio area with both a water and fire element. This allows guests to enjoy a comfortable seated outside area which is fairly rare for winery tasting rooms." - Cosentino Winery


Monday, July 2, 2018

Wine for the 4th of July

Raise your glass and toast America's birthday this week while celebrating the 4th of July! Wine is always the right choice for any occasion and Independence Day is no exception. Cookouts, pool parties, fireworks, and FOOD... wine is the perfect side for all of the above. Here are some wines we love to pair with 4th of July favorite foods:


Shrimp - Reisling goes perfectly with grilled shrimp as it's subtle-sweet flavor pops with the sweetness of the shrimp.

Burgers - Probably the most popular cookout option, burgers pair wonderfully with a Bordeaux blend. The slight smoky taste is great with most grilled items.

Hot Dogs - Often times, burgers and hot dogs go hand-in-hand. Therefore, they do pair well with a Bordeaux blend like the burgers, but a Cabernet is a spot on choice, too!

Chicken - Accompany your delicious grilled chicken with a sparkling wine. The bubbles from the wine really compliment the crispy skin.

Steak - If you're splurging for a steak on the grill this 4th of July, pair it with a delicious, traditional Zinfandel.

Happy 4th of July from AWineryReview.com!

Monday, June 25, 2018

Drinking Wine On A Boat - Without Spilling!

Now that summer is in full swing, you may be boating a lot. It's fun, relaxing, and the perfect activity to do to unwind and drink a glass of wine. However, it's a bumpy ride cruising around the water and your wine is way too precious to spill. Plastic or stemless glasses may help prevent spillage, but we have a couple other options that may be more appealing.


Since most stemware won't fit in cup holders, we love the idea of these wine glass cup holders. There are a variety of designs available and they all seem to work really well and generally have great reviews! These ones have three different attachments: The lawn stake is great for picnics, outdoor activities, and the beach. The strap attachment is perfect to connect to concert chairs and adjusts to many sizes of chairs and even deck railing. The suction base is what you would use on the boat or in the hot tub.
Available here.



Winning the Miami International Boat Show 2017 Innovation Award, these Anti-Spill Wine Glasses are quite impressive! The high quality crystal glasses has an integrated magnet that attracts to the stainless steel board to keep your glass from tipping over. The magnet is strong enough to keep your glass stable, but still allows you to easily pick up your glass.
Available here.


Now that there are a couple of options, there's no reason you can't drink your wine on the boat!

Monday, June 18, 2018

Celebrities Who Own Wineries

Who wouldn't want to own a winery? We sure would! With the wealth most celebrities have, it's no wonder a lot of them own their own wineries for personal and professional use. This trend is not a new one, though. Philosophers, playwrights, politicians, and other well-known people throughout ancient Greek and Roman times had owned their own wineries. Some reasons celebrities delve into the winery business include tax write-off benefits, their love of wine, the challenge of a new enterprise, or just because they can. Whatever their reasons, it's becoming more and more common lately. Celebrity wine sales have been up 19% in recent years, according to Nielsen research in 2007.






Here are some celebrities that own wineries:

• Mario Andretti - Andretti Winery in Napa Valley, California
• Dan Aykroyd - Dan Aykroyd Wines in Ontario, Canada
• Drew Barrymore - Carmel Road in Italy
• Jonathan Cain - delaCain Vineyards in Sonoma County, California
• Mike Ditka - Mike Ditka Wines in Mendocino County, California
• Guy Fieri - Hunt & Ryde Winery in Sonoma County, California
• Mick Fleetwood - Mick Fleetwood Private Cellar in Lake County, California
• Fergie - Ferguson Crest in Santa Ynez Valley, California
• Jeff Gordon - Jeff Gordon Wines in Napa Valley, California
• John Legend - Legend Vineyard Exclusive (LVE) in Napa Valley, California
• Kyle MacLachlan - Pursued by Bear Wine in Columbia Valley, Washington
• Madonna - Ciccone Vineyard and Winery in Leelanau Peninsula, Michigan
• Dan Marino - Vintage 13 Marino Estates in California
• Dave Matthews - Blenheim Vineyards in Charlottesville, Virginia
• Joe Montana - Montagia Wines in Napa Valley, California
• Sam Neill - Two Paddocks in Central Otago, South Island, New Zealand
• Olivia Newton-John - Koala Blue Wines in South Australia
• Arnold Palmer - Arnold Palmer Wines in California
• Nancy Pelosi - Zinfandel Lane Vineyard in St. Helena, California
• Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie - Chateau Miraval in Provence, France
• Sting - Tenuta il Palagio in Tuscany, Italy

Monday, June 11, 2018

Dry Creek Vineyard - Sonoma County, California

"Dry Creek Vineyard was the first new winery established in the Dry Creek Valley after Prohibition. It was David Stare’s vision to plant Sauvignon Blanc that firmly cemented the winery’s legacy as one of California’s most important wineries." - Dry Creek Vineyard


Located in Sonoma County, California, Dry Creek Vineyard was founded in 1972 by David S. Stare. Family owned and operated, the vineyard is now run by second generation family members, including David's daughter, Kim Stare Wallace and her husband Don Wallace. They take pride in their 185 acres of vineyards and strive to provide the best wines possible.

Featuring their insectary garden, beekeeping, and The Dry Creek Habitat Enhancement and Demonstration Project, they strive to provide a vineyard that is 100% Certified Sustainable. “Sustainability is not the destination – sustainability is the journey.  We are constantly adjusting our business practices as we improve our knowledge of how to better exist within nature.” –  Winery Partner Don Wallace

Dry Creek Vineyard also hosts a variety of events throughout the year including their Summer Zinfandel Dinner, Summer of Zin, and Sailing Adventure. Click here for a full list of their summer events.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Best California Wines for Summer

Memorial Day is a day to remember those fallen heroes who gave their life in the line of duty. It is also the official kick off to summer. With it being a week behind us, it's now the time to pick up those delicious summer wines from wine country. With the wide variety of wines available, you have a lot of choices. Some wines that you may have avoided in the past could be the perfect summer wine for you now. Turning away from oaky, buttery flavors, Chardonnays have become crisper and cleaner. Sauvignon Blanc has also improved by being created fuller and richer with less bland and grassy flavors. Rosé is still a top choice for summer wines, but now is more fruity and full.


Paul Hodgins (from the Orange County Register) has put together a list of his favorite 25 California wines for summer. Here is his list: (for full information, click here).

• Babcock 2015 Chardonnay Santa Rita Hills ($30)
• Cambria 2014 Clone 4 Chardonnay ($30)
• Chalk Hill 2015 Estate Bottled Sauvignon Blanc ($33)
• Cliff Lede 2016 Sauvignon Blanc ($25)
• Cline 2016 Ancient Vines Mourvèdre Rosé ($17)
• Donelan 2014 Nancie Chardonnay ($48)
• DuMol 2015 Lia Viognier ($50)
• Ehlers Estate 2016 Sauvignon Blanc ($32)
• Eos 2014 Central Coast Chardonnay ($14)
• Epoch Wines 2014 White ($35)
• Gundlach Bundschu 2015 Gewürztraminer ($23)
• J Brut Rosé NV ($28)
• J Dusi 2016 Pinot Grigio ($18)
• Joullian Vineyards 2016 Semillon ($25)
• Ken Brown 2015 Rita’s Crown Vineyard Chardonnay ($45)
• McIntyre Vineyards 2016 Rosé of Pinot Noir ($24)
• Meiomi 2016 Rosé ($25)
• Merry Edwards 2015 Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc ($34)
• Ramey 2014 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay ($40)
• Sanford 2015 Chardonnay Santa Rita Hills ($25)
• Smith Madrone 2014 Riesling Napa Valley, Spring Mountain District ($30)
• Tablas Creek 2016 Vermentino ($27)
• Toulouse Rose of Pinot Noir 2015 Estate ($24)

Monday, May 28, 2018

Memorial Day

"Memorial Day or Decoration Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while serving in the country's armed forces." Wikipedia

As we celebrate Memorial Day today, we want to take this time to thank all those who have given their lives so we have the opportunity to continue to spend time with our loved ones. Today, and every day, we remember and appreciate their sacrifice.

Some Memorial Day facts:
• Several towns claim to be the originators of Memorial Day, but in 1966 Congress declared Waterloo, New York, to be the birthplace of the holiday.
• Memorial Day originally honored military personnel who died in the Civil War (1861-1865).
• The holiday now honors those who died in any war while serving with the United States.
• It is also called Decoration Day.

In honor of these amazing people, here are some touching Memorial Day photos.

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Monday, May 21, 2018

Tips for Wine Tasting in Wine Country


Make an Appointment
Some wineries in Napa Valley and Sonoma County, California fill up their wine tasting times weeks beforehand. For this reason, it's smart to make an appointment well in advance. This will allow the winery to prepare for your arrival and ensure there is enough room in the winery for your tasting. The size of some of the wineries and the permit restrictions for the number of guests may not allow for you to walk-in and do a tasting. 

Know the Fees
Tasting fees vary from $5-50 depending on how involved of an experience you would like. If you would like a tour of the vineyards, to sit in on a class or seminar, or to have lunch at the winery, the fee increases the more activities you add. It's a good idea to contact the winery to find out what their fees are and what is included.
Should I tip?
Tipping is not required since a fee is charged for wine tasting; however, like any other service you receive, a tip is appreciated if you received above and beyond service!

Taste Wine Properly
There is a right and a wrong way to sample wine during a wine tasting. You should 1. Look, 2. Smell, 3. Taste, 4. Conclude. For detailed information on how to properly taste wine, visit our blog post The Proper Way to Taste Wine


Monday, May 14, 2018

Ravenswood Winery - Sonoma, California


This truly special Winery is a must for red wine lovers. Ravenswood Winery is famous for their lush and spicy Zinfandels, and so much more. This is our memory picture from 1999.

"On a fall day in 1976, as ravens taunted from tree branches above, Joel Peterson worked doggedly to bring in four tons of grapes before a looming thunderstorm hit. The fruit he crushed that night was used for one of two single-vineyard Sonoma County Zins – the first wines to bear Ravenswood’s signature ring of ravens. Ravenswood’s “No Wimpy Wines” credo says it all – embrace the bold, abhor the bland. From our flock of Single Vineyard Designate wines, as unique as the individual vineyards they’re from and the people who farm them, to the County Series wines that capture the spirit of California’s best growing regions and the popular Vintners Blend bottlings sourced from vineyards throughout California, we strive to put what we pick from the fields right into the bottle. Unadulterated, unapologetic, unfussy, unwimpy." - Ravenswoodwinery.com

Located in Sonoma, CA, Ravenswood Winery is one of our favorite places to get some of the most delicious Zinfandel available. They offer walk-in wine tasting, barrel tastings, vineyard tours, library tastings, and group and private tastings. They always have exciting events going on and accept reservations. Visit them today to discover the best Zinfandel you're sure to fall in love with!

Monday, May 7, 2018

Wine Related Gifts for Mother's Day

So mom likes wine, huh? Well, who doesn't?! Mother's Day is this weekend and we've got the BEST wine related gifts for mom...







Wine Glasses
Give mom a set of wine glasses with cute sayings on them like "Because... Kids," or "Liquid Therapy," or "I don't give a sip!"








Wine Scented Candles
Swirling and smelling your wine is half of the experience so fill mom's house with the delicious scent of wine all the time!







Wine & Cheese Serving Tray
If your mom likes to entertain then a wine and cheese serving tray is the perfect gift for her!





Wine Bottle Wind Chimes
If you have some extra wine bottles laying around, a wine bottle wind chime is the perfect way to use them and show mom you care... and it's extra special if you make it yourself!





Monday, April 30, 2018

Our Favorite Napa Valley Wineries

Known throughout the whole world, Napa Valley is home to some of the most beautiful wineries and the tastiest wines! This glorious part of wine country features over 400 wineries who produce full-bodied Cabernets and fruity Merlots, along with dozens of other wine varieties. There are many regions of Napa Valley that contain these amazing vineyards and we want to share some of our favorites with you.

Calistoga

"A must for wine lovers seeking excellence, our setting is one of the most peaceful in the Napa Valley - a stone castle carved into a hillside overlooking a Chinese garden, lake and vineyards reaching out to the base of Mount Saint Helena."

"WELCOME TO CLOS PEGASE, the classic Napa Valley destination for award-winning, estate wines and luxury hospitality. Located just down the road from the town of Calistoga and nestled among estate vineyards, Clos Pegase Winery is both an awe-inspiring and welcoming destination."

Oakville

"Cain Vineyard & Winery is cradled in a spectacular bowl overlooking the Napa Valley from the crest of the Spring Mountain District. We are dedicated to the creation of three Cabernet blends, each drawn from its own unique vineyard sources, each with its own distinctive signature: Cain Cuvée, Cain Concept, and Cain Five."

"Our Oakville winery is located between the Silverado Trail and the town of Oakville on the original site where Silver Oak was founded out of a dairy barn in 1972. Since 2008, our new, state-of-the-art winery has served as the production facility for our Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon."

Rutherford

"Visit us and discover what makes Peju a magical destination! Taste our award-winning wines, learn about food and wine pairing with our wine and culinary exploration or get hands-on in the Peju kitchen. We welcome you to join us daily 10am – 6pm."

"Our roots can be traced back to GH Mumm, the leading international champagne brand in France. Established in California in the late 1970s, Mumm Napa follows traditional wine making techniques of its French heritage to create the finest, hand-crafted sparkling wines. Our dedication to quality has been rewarded with accolades and awards over the decades."

St. Helena

"Passion has the wonderful power to turn mere objects into an obsession, to transform everyday tasks into art. At Beringer, we have been living our passion for over 141 years."

"After almost 30 years as a Builder and Developer in the Bay Area, Steve Sherwin was ready to make a lifestyle change. He and his wife, Linda, were looking for a quieter, more relaxed setting to raise their three children. Steve’s buddy, a fifth generation grape grower in Napa Valley, suggested that they look for property in Napa Valley and grow grapes. His buddy assured him that, although farming is a lot of hard work, it was not nearly as stressful as building and developing."

Yountville

"The Jessup Cellars story is one of passion, family, hard work, resilience and, of course, fantastic wine. Over the past two decades, Jessup Cellars has earned a loyal following for its ultra-premium wines of distinction and a word-of-mouth reputation for hosting one of the friendliest tasting rooms in all of wine county."

"The Kelleher Family Vineyard is situated along Highway 29 in the famous Oakville Appellation in the heart of the Napa Valley. We have 10 acres planted exclusively with Cabernet Sauvignon grapes and we have named this beautiful piece of land "Brix Vineyard", after our namesake restaurant "Brix"."

For more of our favorite wineries, visit us at AWineryReview.com

Monday, April 23, 2018

Wine's Long-Term Effects on Your Brain

A study, published in February of 2018 by The Center for Translational Neuromedicine at The University of Rochester, which centers around how prolonged alcohol exposure effects your central nervous system, had some very interesting results. Their goal was to discover the amount of alcohol it takes to damage the function of the central nervous system through the glymphatic system, which is the system your body uses to remove waste in your brain. What their study revealed was very interesting!


"While a couple of glasses of wine can help clear the mind after a busy day, new research shows that it may actually help clean the mind as well. The new study shows that low levels of alcohol consumption tamp down inflammation and helps the brain clear away toxins, including those associated with Alzheimer's disease." - Science Daily

To conduct their study they exposed mice to different amounts of ethanol (alcohol). Some mice were exposed to moderate doses, some high, and some extreme doses. The mice that were given moderate doses showed improved glymphatic function compared to mice that were not exposed to any ethanol. This level increases the brain's efficiency of waste removal while reducing inflammation. The mice that were exposed to high and extreme doses had severe decreases in their brain waste removal. Their activity was subdued and their cells induced an injury reaction. The authors also suggest that a higher risk of dementia may be a long-term result of high or extreme exposure.

So how much is moderate, high, and extreme doses of wine?
Moderate Exposure - 2.5 glasses
High Exposure - 8 glasses
Extreme Exposure - 21 glasses
*These numbers are approximations

The bottom line is that drinking wine, or any alcohol, in moderation may be better for your central nervous system than drinking it in high doses or not at all. It's perfectly fine to enjoy a glass or two of your favorite bottle!

For more information, or to read the full study, click here.

Monday, April 16, 2018

A Crumbling Cork


If you've ever had a bottle of wine that had a crumbling cork you may wonder what to do. The best way to separate the cork from the wine is to filter the wine through mesh to collect the cork pieces. If the wine is old, this process may oxidize the wine more than desired, so you may want to filter it into a glass instead of decanting it. Since most wine bottles will still be sealed, the wine should have maintained it's quality. The best way to determine if the quality has been compromised is to taste the wine before serving. 

To prevent the cork from crumbling in the first place a two-prong wine opener is a good investment. This method pulls the cork from the sides instead of from the middle with a screw which can keep the cork in tact. If you don't have a two-prong wine opener yet, try removing a fragile cork very slowly.

If the cork breaks while removing it and some is left in the opening of the bottle, you can try to remove it by using both a two-prong wine opener and a cork screw. Or you can try to pry it out with the sharp end of the cork screw, again, very slowly and carefully. If all else fails, pushing the cork into the bottle of wine may be your only option.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Our Website

We are constantly updating our website and the services we offer you! We have "Featured Wineries" on our website along with our NEW magazine! Here are some of our services:

Recipes
& More!


H. Montanile's winery review is a comprehensive overview of California's wine country detailing the overall experience of visiting the California Wineries.  Our reviews include the wines generally available for tasting, as well as a wide variety of other wines.  With over 5000 wineries to choose from, let H. Montanile's winery review be your companion on your visit to the wineries in the Napa Valley and Sonoma County.

We update our website weekly with new information and products so keep checking back so you don't miss anything!

Monday, April 2, 2018

Spring in Sonoma County


The season of spring is refreshing, fragrant, and vibrant. It's full of new blossoms, scents, and life! Along with the mustard blossoms, there are tons of flowers coming into bloom all across the county of Sonoma, filling the fields and gardens of the area.

Some beautiful locations to visit this spring include the Kendall-Jackson Wine Center which has a beautiful four acre paradise. With seven garden spaces, some are intended just for beauty, some for education, and some provide the vegetables, herbs, and fruits used by the culinary team for the food and wine pairings.

Ferrari-Carano Winery is also an awe-inspiring place to visit in the spring. Sprawled on five acres, you can explore paths and foot bridges, a stream, waterfalls, and fish ponds. This extraordinary winery is known for it's colorful display of over 10,000 tulips and daffodils. The gardens also include over 2,000 different species of shrubs and trees that are all informatively marked.

Featuring over 150 kinds of roses, Korbel Rose Garden at Korbel Champagne Cellars was planted in the 1880s at the Korbel Family summer home. In addition to the roses, the garden now contains redwood, plum trees, shrubs, and other beautiful plants native to the area.

These are only some of the amazing gardens located in Sonoma County. Spring is the best time to visit these gardens and... stop to smell the roses!