Buys $25 and under, Buys under $75, Central/South American Wines, Shops + Shows, Tastings

Mexican Wine? Si!

When Americans hear “Mexico” and “alcohol”, we think Tequila. Then maybe Mezcal. Beer too. Wine, not so much. But Mexico has been producing wine since the 1520’s, when homesick conquistadors planted vineyards across Central and South America with cuttings from Spanish vines. Whatever devastation Spain wreaked on the countries it conquered, it left a legacy… Continue reading Mexican Wine? Si!

Big Splurges $75+, Buys $25 and under, Lisa's Whites, Red; Mostly Napa Cabs, Rosé Rosato etc., Tastings

Our Top 10 Wines of 2021

After the wreck of 2020 all eyes looked towards 2021 for, what? Normalcy? Comfort? How'd that work out? As we look ahead to 2022, let's revisit the 10 wines that brought us the most joy while we all suffered the slings and arrows of an outrageous 2021. WHITE/ROSÉS Favorite White Zeltinger Sonnenuhr Riesling Feinherb Spatlese,… Continue reading Our Top 10 Wines of 2021

Buys $25 and under, Puglia, Red; Mostly Napa Cabs, Tastings

Seven Summer Surprises

As we turn the clocks back into darkness and careen towards winter, we thought a quick post on seven great wines we discovered over the summer would keep the warm feelings going a few days longer. These are not "summer" sippers; we just happened to find them while staying sane through Covid, family health issues,… Continue reading Seven Summer Surprises

Buys $25 and under, Lisa's Whites

Another Misunderstood Grape – Riesling Tasting

Woodinville, WA Vineyard For some reason we're always banging the drum for lesser-known wine regions and misunderstood wines. We visited Temecula, CA and Woodinville, WA 20+ years ago, before each became [or hoped to become] the "next Napa." Gary pushed Ruggero Di Bardo's Susumaniello from Puglia just as Trader Joe's put it on its shelves… Continue reading Another Misunderstood Grape – Riesling Tasting

Big Splurges $75+, Red; Mostly Napa Cabs, Tastings

Napa Cab 2017 Blind Tasting

Napacab. One word, three syllables. Celebrated all over, often over-priced and occasionally over-hyped, it’s the pour of choice among one-half of Vino Duo and most of our wine-loving friends. Last month, we gathered these friends for a blind tasting of four moderately-priced ($50 - $100) 2017 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon wines, along with a ringer—a… Continue reading Napa Cab 2017 Blind Tasting

Rosé Rosato etc.

Some Napa Cab Lovers Walk into a Rosato Tasting

Rosé wines get a bad rap. Damned with faint praise as a “great summer sipper” and showcased by wine shops from June thru September, rosé wine is lumped in with pop top wine spritzers and sweet, beach-ready whites. I think rosé still suffers from the dreaded “blush” wine craze of the 1980’s—remember ‘White Zinfandel’?—and from… Continue reading Some Napa Cab Lovers Walk into a Rosato Tasting

Buys $25 and under, Tastings

Italian Wines off the Beaten Path

Our last wine journey to Italy was in the year 2018 BC (Before Covid). We spent a very happy week visiting wineries in Puglia, taking a deep dive into lesser-known [to us] red grapes like Aglianico, Susumaniello, and Negroamara and the white grapes Verdeca and Fiano. So, when the Commonwealth Wine School announced a 90-minute… Continue reading Italian Wines off the Beaten Path

Big Splurges $75+, Buys under $75, Red; Mostly Napa Cabs

Top Red Wines of 2020

Yes, 2020 sucked. And yes, we can't wait to say good riddance. But before we toss 2020 in the dumpster, pour a gallon of hand sanitizer on it and set it on fire, let's at least reflect on the good things about the year. Like, the best red wines we tasted, from Napa to Washington,… Continue reading Top Red Wines of 2020

Red; Mostly Napa Cabs, Tastings

Volpaia’s 2015 Chianti Classico Lives Up to Star Ratings

Tomorrow night we may be popping Champagne corks or drowning ourselves in Tequila, depending on the success of the Biden/Harris ticket. But last night, it was Chianti all around, paired with Rao pasta and Gary's homemade Bolognese sauce. He's been tinkering with this classic meat sauce ever since we returned from Puglia, where a Tuna… Continue reading Volpaia’s 2015 Chianti Classico Lives Up to Star Ratings

Buys $25 and under, Rosé Rosato etc., Tastings

Another Stellar Italian Rosato

Altopiano Terre di Chieti Rosato, Feudo Antico 2017   $8/bottle In previous posts I've raved about Italian rosés crafted from Nebbiolo, Negroamaro, and Sangiovese red wine grapes. These Italian rosato wines aren't light summer sippers with adorable labels and soda pop flavors. The wines I favor have structure and substance while also feeling a little like… Continue reading Another Stellar Italian Rosato