Category Archives: Countries and Regions

Warwick Wine Estate of Stellenbosch

We visited winemaker Nic van Aarde last week at the attractive Warwick Wine Estate on Hwy 340 north of Stellenbosch.  Warwick produces about 120 thousand cases annually from both estate and purchased fruit. They’ve decided that Chardonnay and Bordeaux varieties … Continue reading

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Samantha O’Keefe’s Terroir Wines from Greyton’s Lismore Winery

Samantha O’Keefe of Lismore Winery makes unique, nuanced wines from exceptional, South African terroir. Her vineyards are located well off the beaten path in the shadows of the Riviersonderend mountain range outside Greyton.  The dry farmed vines are planted on … Continue reading

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La Bellanotte of Friuli Isonzo: Current Releases

La Bellanotte has a lengthy, illustrious history, but its modern winemaking dates only from 2000 when Paolo Benassi, son of the owner, Giuliana Guadagni, assumed management of the estate. Located in Farra d’Isonzo, it currently has 8 hectares of vines … Continue reading

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Old Vine Cinsault from Lodi, Stellenbosch, and the Swartland

The Cinsault grape doesn’t often get a lot of respect. It’s a prolific vine that can produce light wines of little distinction. But old vine Cinsault put in the hands of outstanding winemakers is another thing altogether. In this article, … Continue reading

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Carol Shelton Zinfandels from the Queen of Zin

Carol Shelton is a pioneer in the wine industry and considered by many to be the Queen of Zin, a title she has earned by producing some of California’s finest Zinfandels. In this article we review her current Zinfandel releases, … Continue reading

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New Zealand White Wines: Reviews of Current Releases from 19 Producers

New Zealand established its wine reputation on Sauvignon Blanc, a variety uniquely suited to the terroir of the South Island, especially the Marlborough region.  Over time, growers have diversified their white grape plantings to Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, and other varieties, … Continue reading

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New Zealand Pinot Noir: Reviews of Current Releases

Pinot Noir is one of our favorite grape varieties and New Zealand is one of the top sources. Since issuing our  Report #7 New Zealand’s Exciting Pinot Noirs,  we have admired the progress made by local producers in improving the … Continue reading

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Michel Chapoutier’s Domaine Bila-Haut in Roussillon: Current Releases

Michel Chapoutier is best known for his Rhone Valley wines, but he also puts his stamp of excellence on Roussillon with his Domaine Bila-Haut, a which he purchased in 1999.  Thanks to Jane Kettlewell of Creative Palate Communications and HB … Continue reading

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The Di Giovanna Wines of Sicily

The Di Giovanna family traces its winemaking origins back to 1860 when Cristoforo Ciaccio planted his first vineyards in 1860. Today, brothers Klaus and Gunther Di Giovanna manage this Sicilian family estate located southwest of Palermo.  Its 56 hectares of … Continue reading

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De Toren: Current Releases of Bordeaux Blends from the Polkadraai Hills of Stellenbosch

De Toren is one of South Africa’s premiere producers of Bordeaux red blends. We visited De Toren last week, our first winery visit of 2018, to taste the current releases, including the new, ultra-luxury wines Book XVII and Black Lion. … Continue reading

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