Search found 93 matches

by Ben M a n d l e r
October 10th, 2019, 9:22 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Losing Power During Harvest
Replies: 56
Views: 3756

Re: Losing Power During Harvest

Outages in Santa Rosa were patchy. Most west of the 101 were fine (so many wineries in central-southern RRV did not lose power, and Green Valley looked fine from what I could see). We lost power here at our apartment in central Santa Rosa for 40 hours - came back on at 7pm this evening to the sound ...
by Ben M a n d l e r
October 4th, 2019, 10:25 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: PSA: Kinda ridiculous Bonny Doon sale
Replies: 67
Views: 4897

Re: PSA: Kinda ridiculous Bonny Doon sale

Cigare halves for $10 a pop are way too good a deal to pass up. Picked up some X-Block and Semillon to round it out. Thanks a ton for the heads-up.
by Ben M a n d l e r
October 2nd, 2019, 2:04 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Napa Cab under $100
Replies: 77
Views: 4923

Re: Napa Cab under $100

Update: she liked the Chappellet very much. I have a feeling she will like the Frogs Leap even more, but that bottle will be for another time. Thanks again everyone.
by Ben M a n d l e r
September 6th, 2019, 6:45 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Esther Mobley tells you how to look like a total newb
Replies: 47
Views: 2579

Re: Esther Mobley tells you how to look like a total newb

I think the advice to ask about tasting a grape is a great one, especially for people who aren't yet beyond the pale in their love of wine. Tasting grapes at differing levels of ripeness, seeing the differences in flavor and texture between pulp, skin, and seeds, can really eye-opening for people wh...
by Ben M a n d l e r
September 2nd, 2019, 6:59 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread
Replies: 493
Views: 26272

Re: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread

The last few days have seen a dramatic increase in the number of pickups going 25 mph at 4am looking for their turn off River/Wohler/Eastside/Westside Road...a lot more people must be picking! As with the others (above), we're entering a cooler period. Highs in the Middle Reach will stay below 90 on...
by Ben M a n d l e r
September 2nd, 2019, 6:36 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Donnhoff/Faustino/Sociando
Replies: 15
Views: 1068

Re: Donnhoff/Faustino/Sociando

There is never a bad time to drink Donnhoff. I've also never had a bad wine from them. Exemplary stuff. I am quite envious!
by Ben M a n d l e r
September 2nd, 2019, 6:34 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: What's the wine that changed your life?
Replies: 166
Views: 8290

Re: What's the wine that changed your life?

Merry Edwards, Meredith estate. I know not the biggest bottle, but at this time I was early 20’s and had no really tried many wines outside of my corner store $6.99 bottles we drank. This wine opened my eyes to beautiful well made wine that was a pleasure to drink. I’ve since gone done a very expen...
by Ben M a n d l e r
September 1st, 2019, 6:03 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: What's the wine that changed your life?
Replies: 166
Views: 8290

Re: What's the wine that changed your life?

1990 Ducru Beaucaillou, in 2003. I was 15 and it's the first wine I ever remember really *tasting*, paying attention to. Of course, the wine demanded it of me. 2005 Grans Fassian Trittenheimer Apotheke Riesling Spatlese, in 2008. I was 19 years old in my 2nd year of college. I bought it because it w...
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 28th, 2019, 8:07 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: 8 Favourite Varieties (4 red, 4 white)
Replies: 59
Views: 1905

Re: 8 Favourite Varieties (4 red, 4 white)

I’m going to go here with the varieties I most often find myself excited about. The ones that, in their best examples, make me sigh with happiness more than any others.

Red:
Syrah
Zinfandel
Pinot Noir
Tempranillo

White:
Riesling
Marsanne/Roussanne
Gewurztraminer
Semillon
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 23rd, 2019, 6:13 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread
Replies: 493
Views: 26272

Re: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread

I'm guessing their Vin Gris will come from this? They made Blanc de Noir from Drakes but maybe changed the program to this site. I think it is behind Copain on Starr. It freaked me out because we get Floodgate/Starscape about a mile away and I haven't even washed a single tank or picking bin yet. T...
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 22nd, 2019, 7:42 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread
Replies: 493
Views: 26272

Re: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread

Yesterday we kicked off harvest at Williams Selyem with the first of our Pinot from the MacGregor vineyard. I hope everyone here has a great vintage!
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 22nd, 2019, 6:31 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Napa Cab under $100
Replies: 77
Views: 4923

Re: Napa Cab under $100

Thanks a million to everyone who gave suggestions. I now have a lovely list to dip into for the future. I hit up Bottle Barn this afternoon and picked up the Chappellet ($60) and the Frog's Leap ($52). I did also see the Bevan Ontogeny and Shafer One Point Five and was tempted by both, but figured t...
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 21st, 2019, 10:10 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Halcon Vineyards Visit August 2019
Replies: 13
Views: 946

Re: Halcon Vineyards Visit August 2019

Thanks for writing this up Dan. Paul and Jackie were amazing hosts. That Roussanne is really something, and the Syrahs really are beauties, especially the Alturas, for me.

And what an incredible set of views. Well worth the harrowing drive!
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 18th, 2019, 6:42 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Napa Cab under $100
Replies: 77
Views: 4923

Re: Napa Cab under $100

Jim Stewart wrote:
August 18th, 2019, 4:45 pm
Psst . . . Champagne!
Can you believe it, she doesn’t really like sparkling wine.
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 18th, 2019, 2:15 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Napa Cab under $100
Replies: 77
Views: 4923

Napa Cab under $100

Hi everyone, I know this is a played-out topic but I have a specific question so I’m hoping I can tap the collective wisdom here. It’s about a month until my wife’s 30th birthday. She loves Napa cabs, but we barely ever drink them at home (in part because of price, in part because she humors my pred...
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 18th, 2019, 12:00 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread
Replies: 493
Views: 26272

Re: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread

Heat spike this last week pushed brix up in RRV pretty quickly. Blessedly cooler this weekend and with more fog and clouds lingering this decidedly cool Sunday morning, giving things a little respite. I saw some fruit coming in along Westside Road last week, I’d guess for sparkling. Looking like a n...
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 12th, 2019, 3:31 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: What red/white blends have you tried?
Replies: 54
Views: 1533

Re: What red/white blends have you tried?

On a weekend trip to Anderson Valley this weekend, one of the standouts was a wine from Lichen, Les Pinots Noir & Gris, 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Pinot Gris. All immediately pressed off the skins so no hint of red in the color, but a great acid-richness balance, smoky-creamy in the mid-palate.
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 6th, 2019, 6:17 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread
Replies: 493
Views: 26272

Re: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread

Yesterday the fog lingered til late morning and there were at least some clouds in the sky all day. As far as I can tell, it was the first time since late May that we haven't had clear blue skies in the afternoon here in the Middle Reach of the Russian River Valley.
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 5th, 2019, 7:30 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Williams Selyem Allocation Next Week
Replies: 20
Views: 1776

Re: Williams Selyem Allocation Next Week

They give us interns an allocation so I put mine in today. I'll be working the pickup party in October, look forward to seeing y'all there!
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 3rd, 2019, 5:38 pm
Forum: Wine 101: The Basics
Topic: How would you guys manage a four person tasting
Replies: 21
Views: 1278

Re: How would you guys manage a four person tasting

In my experience the problem with trying something like 4 bottles for 4 people is that, after a bottle each, everyone is in a good mood and you start cracking open other bottles so it becomes 6 bottles for 4 people and then the next morning gets a bit slow... I think half bottles is a good idea, tho...
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 3rd, 2019, 5:33 pm
Forum: Wine 101: The Basics
Topic: High Tanin Acidity Wine
Replies: 21
Views: 1179

Re: High Tanin Acidity Wine

If you're looking for high acid red wines, don't overlook Zinfandel. Acidity in zins can be monstrously high due to their inconsistent cluster ripening. You can get a wine with 15% alcohol and very ripe flavors that is still tear-inducingly high-acid.
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 1st, 2019, 8:57 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: What bottle of wine did you open today?
Replies: 10842
Views: 393213

Re: What bottle of wine did you open today?

2017 Antiquum Farm "Juel" Pinot Noir. Took about half an hour to open up, but then very nice. Lovely purity of fruit, quite pretty, plush texture, nice savory backbone. Not built for the long-haul but should be very nice over the next couple of years.
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 1st, 2019, 6:32 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Low acidity, dry, but not super-dry wine?
Replies: 14
Views: 754

Re: Low acidity, dry, but not super-dry wine?

RichardFlack wrote:
August 1st, 2019, 8:00 am
Sounds like a need for well aged old world wines. Rioja? Top Cru Beaujolais?
+1 on Rioja. If you liked Bordeaux but are now craving something a little softer, pick up some Reservas with 10-15 years on them and go from there.
by Ben M a n d l e r
August 1st, 2019, 5:59 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread
Replies: 493
Views: 26272

Re: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread

Some of the vineyards in the Russian River Valley are getting sufficiently close to full color that tourists are starting to pull off the road and pluck clusters off the ends of rows. A shame, really, considering the blackberries are fully loaded right now and easy picking everywhere you look. I am...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 31st, 2019, 8:08 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread
Replies: 493
Views: 26272

Re: 2019 West Coast Weather Thread

Some of the vineyards in the Russian River Valley are getting sufficiently close to full color that tourists are starting to pull off the road and pluck clusters off the ends of rows. A shame, really, considering the blackberries are fully loaded right now and easy picking everywhere you look.
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 31st, 2019, 7:54 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Bottle weight
Replies: 40
Views: 1476

Re: Bottle weight

One often neglected point about heavy bottles is that they are really nasty to work with on a bottling line. If you’re dumping glass and stacking pallets all day, adding 5-10 lb to each case makes things a lot more tiring. Also, specialty glass of any kind is not only more expensive but also harder ...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 28th, 2019, 9:09 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Tell me what I should be looking for in California besides Cabs
Replies: 65
Views: 2995

Re: Tell me what I should be looking for in California besides Cabs

Zinfandel, Zinfandel, Zinfandel. Incredible old vineyards abound. Start at Ridge. Visit their Lytton Springs winery just north of Healdsburg and taste through their wines. Most are $30-40. Their small-production single vineyard zins are all fantastic but Geyserville is the true star - beautiful youn...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 19th, 2019, 10:45 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Boston Retail Scene?
Replies: 34
Views: 2008

Re: Boston Retail Scene?

Checked out the website, and wow.... yeah. This is what I was hoping for and then some. Any clue how their shipping is? or if it's possible to arrange to pick up orders at their Boston location? Thanks. You’re going to want to go out to the store in Waltham - they have fantastic tastings. Their gra...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 15th, 2019, 9:01 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: TN: 2006, 2009, 2015 Ridge Monte Bello
Replies: 13
Views: 1422

Re: TN: 2006, 2009, 2015 Ridge Monte Bello

Had the Demostene at Ridge a couple weeks back and it was absolutely singing. Definitely the star of the day.
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 10th, 2019, 9:53 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Wine Fraud Prevention Survey
Replies: 17
Views: 1366

Re: Wine Fraud Prevention Survey

Ashley - perhaps you weren't expecting the level of engagement from people on this board and were simply hoping for informed wine enthusiasts (and buyers/sellers) to help with your market research. But the questions above highlight a real concern: that this is a complex issue and that people are ske...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 10th, 2019, 9:42 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Generally speaking, what type of wine is the best food wine?
Replies: 46
Views: 1726

Re: Generally speaking, what type of wine is the best food wine?

I voted for Champagne because of course it is, but White Bordeaux gets a hat-tip from me, too.
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 10th, 2019, 9:40 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: Removing Labels - Help
Replies: 4
Views: 1373

Re: Removing Labels - Help

If the labels are fresh then Brian's suggestion should work easy enough. If you need an assist you can add some sodium carbonate, which will help with the glue. If you're using peroxy in the winery then I'd guess that could work, too, though I've not tried it myself.
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 8th, 2019, 2:14 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: 750Daily: Croatian Wines
Replies: 9
Views: 701

Re: 750Daily: Croatian Wines

There’s not a lot of tribidrag left in Croatia anymore, to my knowledge, though I know Carole Meredith is on these boards and I’m sure could speak vastly more authoritatively on the subject. There has been quite a lot of new Tribidrag planting in the last few years. This is understandable consideri...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 7th, 2019, 2:49 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: What is YOUR most recent wine purchase?
Replies: 11898
Views: 569747

Re: What is YOUR most recent wine purchase?

Popped over to The Barlow in Sebastopol yesterday and tasted through some Pax wines. Came away with a bottle of the 2017 North Coast Syrah. Magical stuff, and in some ways prettier and more immediately accessible than the SVD bottlings, and at half the price, too. The same day I was also up at Ridge...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 6th, 2019, 8:36 pm
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: Getting into the business: finding good harvest internships
Replies: 31
Views: 2357

Re: Getting into the business: finding good harvest internships

Thanks for the bump, guys. I'm still around if anyone has questions. A lot of it has to do with sensible expectations, but for those of you who have actually been through it, you know it's the unexpected challenges that are the real speed bumps. And #1 = Assume You Know Nothing Thank you Mary, your...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 6th, 2019, 7:01 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: North Coast wines in $30-$50 range?
Replies: 23
Views: 1109

Re: North Coast wines in $30-$50 range?

Here is one example of learning about wine. Idlewild Wines has "Sunday School" once a month, usually the first Sunday and is all about a Region of Italy. I have posted about a few of them if you use search option. Always informative, Sam Bilbro, Idlewild Owner - Winemaker is present among others IT...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 6th, 2019, 6:58 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: North Coast wines in $30-$50 range?
Replies: 23
Views: 1109

Re: North Coast wines in $30-$50 range?

Pax north coast Syrah falls in that range. Bedrocks Coast Syrah is a little below it but its so good. Just had the North Coast Syrah at The Barlow this afternoon. Fantastic stuff. Interestingly, most of the non-Syrah wines we tasted at Pax left something to be desired, but all the Syrahs were singi...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 6th, 2019, 9:43 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Dumbest wine related thing you have done ?
Replies: 57
Views: 3605

Re: Dumbest wine related thing you have done ?

There have been too many occasions to count on which, in high spirits among friends, I have opened too good a bottle of wine too late in the night after too many other bottles of wine, and woken the next morning with no memory of the wine and just an empty bottle.
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 6th, 2019, 9:39 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: 750Daily: Croatian Wines
Replies: 9
Views: 701

Re: 750Daily: Croatian Wines

Plavac Mali is a fantastic grape. Big and bold but capable of great finesse and polish, too, when treated well. Like zin/trib. Dingač produces a nice example that I believe is available very affordable in the US. There’s not a lot of tribidrag left in Croatia anymore, to my knowledge, though I know ...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 4th, 2019, 10:25 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: North Coast wines in $30-$50 range?
Replies: 23
Views: 1109

Re: North Coast wines in $30-$50 range?

These are wineries we buy from and enjoy but more important you can visit each one and taste with the owners - winemakers and listen to their thoughts, philosophy and goals for the brand. It is so much better than just going into a store and buying a bottle without any knowledge. Every one of my li...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 3rd, 2019, 10:43 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: North Coast wines in $30-$50 range?
Replies: 23
Views: 1109

North Coast wines in $30-$50 range?

I recently moved to Sonoma County (Santa Rosa) and am looking to stock up on some local wines. So I'm seeking in particular some recommendations for wines from the general area, if anyone would be so kind as to kick a few ideas my way. I don't want to limit anyone in what they suggest - I like a bit...
by Ben M a n d l e r
July 3rd, 2019, 8:00 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Help needed: Napa/Sonoma trip with a twist
Replies: 16
Views: 1402

Re: Help needed: Napa/Sonoma trip with a twist

I’ll second Ridge. Their normal tour and tasting is great and if you contact them and ask for something special for educational purposes I wouldn’t be surprised if they did something a little extra for you, possibly including in the lab.
by Ben M a n d l e r
June 29th, 2019, 6:43 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: What do you know about Genodics?
Replies: 14
Views: 1005

Re: What do you know about Genodics?

Water has memory and vines have taste in music. I always figured Cabernet Sauvignon would be into Phish...
by Ben M a n d l e r
June 20th, 2019, 5:35 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Aging Half-Bottles
Replies: 18
Views: 1132

Re: Aging Half-Bottles

I am a big Sauternes fan and drink as many 1988s (birth year) as I can get my hands on. Almost all are half bottles - same reasoning as you. Never had any issues.
by Ben M a n d l e r
June 18th, 2019, 9:21 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: TN: Paul Sauer 1997 (South African premium Cabernet blend), Kanonkop
Replies: 9
Views: 495

Re: TN: Paul Sauer 1997 (South African premium Cabernet blend), Kanonkop

Had the 2000 Paul Sauer just a few months ago and it was singing, very much along the same lines as your note. Really fantastic stuff, and with plenty ahead of it, too.
by Ben M a n d l e r
June 15th, 2019, 8:59 am
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: Getting into the business: finding good harvest internships
Replies: 31
Views: 2357

Re: Getting into the business: finding good harvest internships

Casey Hartlip wrote:
June 15th, 2019, 5:58 am
Sampling=sugar sampling. Testing fields.
Thanks Casey. I thought that (or something similar) might be it...but confused since I didn’t think WS had interns out in the vineyards. Times may have changed.
by Ben M a n d l e r
June 14th, 2019, 11:43 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Percent holding on cellartracker
Replies: 15
Views: 1819

Re: Percent holding on cellartracker

When I was living in England and drinking a lot more European wines that aren't exported to the U.S., I had to add a lot of new wines to CT. So simply from my own experience, coverage of not-internationally-known European wines is very sparse. Since I moved to the U.S., I haven't had to add a single...
by Ben M a n d l e r
June 14th, 2019, 11:39 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: What wine to pair with Gazpacho?
Replies: 30
Views: 1919

Re: What wine to pair with Gazpacho?

Sake
by Ben M a n d l e r
June 14th, 2019, 11:38 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Another stupid poll about wine drinking
Replies: 56
Views: 2592

Re: Another stupid poll about wine drinking

Generally speaking, beer, especially if it's hot out. But wine-wise, or when it's cooler out, I want something that's effortlessly pleasurable to drink and that I don't generally have to worry about drinking at the right time. Zin zin zin.

Go to advanced search