Tag Archives: California Wine

Old Vine Zinfandel – Wine Time™ on ABC Montana TV

This week on Wine Time™ with WineGuyMike™ on ABC Montana TV learn about Old Vine Zinfandel from Lodi and Dry Creek Valley AVA’s©.

The season of the year and temperature have a great deal of influence on our palates.  Just as we eat lighter fare in summer months we gravitate to comfort food dishes in fall and winter months. Consumer wine choices are very similar. Seasonal weather and temperature dictate wine choices; white wine or lighter bodied red wines when it’s warm while medium to full bodied red wines are the “go to” choice in cooler months.

This week on Wine Time™ with WineGuyMike™ I’m sharing one of those comfort wines in this transitional season of fall.  Zinfandel is full bodied, fruit forward, and a spicy red wine that is one of California’s favorites, it is also one of their most plentiful varietals.  Berries, cherries, tobacco, oak, and vanilla, this wine has much to offer.  Zinfandel is a diverse grape that is also used to produce the infamous White Zinfandel and is also used as a blending grape in other red wine blends.

In this article I’m focusing on two viticulture areas renowned for old growth or in this case Old Vine Zinfandel.  Old growth or old vines are any grapevines that exceed 50 years of age.  Old vines produce fewer grapes with smaller berries, concentrated fruit and sugar resulting in wine with solid balance and structure.  The Lodi and Dry Creek areas feature vines that are 120 -140 years old. In fact the Dry Creek AVA of Sonoma County, California has one of the largest Old Vine Zinfandel concentrations in the world.

Lodi, California is one of the largest Zinfandel producing viticulture areas in California accounting for 40%.  This delicious grape varietal has been grown in the Lodi AVA since the late 1800’s and there are still thousands of “old vine” acreage producing wines of distinction.

There are multi-generational families dating back 100 years and new innovative growers that farm grapes in this region.  Experience and new technologies have combined and the result is world class wines that express a true sense of place.  The Lodi AVA has grown from 8 wineries in the late 1990’s to over 60 today and rests at the edge of the Sacramento River Delta on one side with the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range to the east.  Warm days and cool nights are typical of this grape growing area which receives 17’’ of annual rainfall during the rainy season.  The growing season remains dry allowing for healthy cultivation free from vine diseases and pests.

Geological events and alluvial soil matter are what formed this Zinfandel friendly growing ground thousands of years ago.  The Mokelumne and Cosumnes rivers originating in the Sierra Nevada Mountain range supply granitic minerals combined with layers of volcanic rock and ash, thus producing unique and complex flavor in Lodi Zinfandel wines.

Lodi’s viticulture area has expanded to the rolling foothills to the east where the soil quality is poor which actually is good for growing grapes.  Soil in the northern portion of the Lodi AVA is rocky and in the southern region soil is comprised of heavy clay which produces concentrated and complex Zinfandel wines. There are 7 grape growing appellations in the greater Lodi viticulture area.

Dry Creek Valley in Sonoma County, California is home to 70 wineries nestled in this 16-mile long and 2-mile wide valley that has a 140 year history of grape growing.  The Dry Creek AVA has one of the most populous Old Vine Zinfandel growth concentrations in the world.  The Dry Creek Valley is located just one hour north of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge in Northern Sonoma County.

Known for producing world-class Zinfandel the Dry Creek Valley also produces Bordeaux and Rhone grape varietals.  Grape growers from this area are devoted to preserving the natural beauty of the valley through implementation of sustainable, organic, and biodynamic farming practices.  Most of the 70 wineries in this area are small family-owned operations with limited production premium wines.

Dry Creek Valley is located along fault lines created by uplift and alluvial soil matter as a result of ancient seismic activity.  The valley floor is a deep mixture of composites of well drained gravel and sandy loam producing rich fruit.  The benches and hillsides are composed of gravelly clay-loam that often is vibrant red in color.  This rocky soil is well drained and induces late season stress on the vines producing grapes of exceptional varietal character.

Terroir is not just soil, weather plays a great role in an areas ability to produce exceptional grapes that express extraordinary varietal character.  The Dry Creek Valley has it all, great soil and climatic conditions that are ideal for growing wine grapes.

Dry Creek is situated 70 miles north of San Francisco and 20 miles east of the Pacific Ocean.  Lake Sonoma borders the valley to the north with the confluence of Dry Creek and the Russian River to the south.  This is a Region II climatic growing area similar to that of Bordeaux with daily temperatures rising only to the mid-80’s.  The coastal mountain range protects the valley from the cool oceanic influence but at night just the opposite is true, the mountains draw the cool moist air into the valley letting the grapes rest while concentrating and balancing fruit, sugar, and acidity.  All necessary components to make great wine.

If you are a Zinfandel fan or looking to expand your wine palate both of these valued selections are tasty examples of wine from the Lodi and Dry Creek Valley AVA’s.

Join me live for Wine Time™ with WineGuyMike™ on ABC Montana. Wine Time airs bi-monthly on Friday’s during the 5:30PM news cast.  The next feature airs on 10/25/2013.

 

Visit www.WineGuyMike.com to learn more. Please subscribe to my blog and newsletter while visiting my site so you get my weekly updates.  Please drink in moderation and good health.

From my table to yours,

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Author of Daily Decadence The Art of Sensual Living

Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and U 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s full unedited podcast with author Sherri Dobay; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/09/01/wine-guy-mike-for-september-2nd/

Recent Podcast with Halter Ranch head winemaker, Kevin Sass; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/19/wine-guy-mike-for-august-19/

Recent podcast with Author Becky Sue Epstein; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/12/wine-guy-mike-for-august-12/

YouTube preview of this week’s show with Sherri Dobay; http://youtu.be/qgWNP1_fGZs

Recent Podcast with head winemaker of Balletto Vineyards & Winery, Mr. Anthony Beckman; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/29/wine-guy-mike-for-july-29/

Recent podcast; (full length conversation) with Maximilian Riedel, CEO Riedel Crystal of America http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/24/wine-guy-mike-for-june-24/

NBC Montana Today TV Segment; Perfect Patio Wines and food pairing; http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/Mike-Tornatore-8-7-12/-/14594602/15999458/-/67a5ri/-/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana

Author Sherri Dobay joined me in the studio this week on the WineGuyMike Radio Show to talk about her book Daily Decadence The Art of Sensual Living.  Dobay is a women of wit, wisdom, humor, and experience which she shares with the reader in her book. 

As I read Dobay’s book I was struck by the transparency of her vignettes. Her stories of trysts are scintillating and take you on a contemplative journey that is like a retrospective vacation.  Dobay then takes you a step closer to her soul by sharing a recipe and wine pairing that was deeply meaningful to the story. 

Daily Decadence The Art of Sensual Living exceeded my expectations and I have really enjoyed reading this book, I find it very soothing almost as if I have taken a long weekend trip.  Dobay’s objective in writing her book was to encourage the reader to enjoy the moment, appreciate that which is simple, stop and smell the roses.  It is my opinion that she has more than accomplished this and she has insightful experience to share as well.

Readers will really enjoy this book of beautiful and sometimes sensually scandalous tales that Dobay has to share, but make no mistake this author is not one dimensional by any means.  Dobay takes time to indulge just as she recommends the reader too do.  Sherri Dobay is an accomplished artist, Chef du Jour, and loves to ride horses.  If you need a bit of Daily Decadence in your life get a copy of Dobay’s book and infuse a little art of sensual living into your life, Sherri will show you how.

Foodies and wine lover won’t be disappointed either, Dobay’s wine and food pairings are elegant.  Remember the inspiration for the pairings are stirred by her soul as she shares the intimate experiences of her life in such an authentic way.  Not sure what’s on your table tonight, Dobay inspires the Chef du Jour within.

I want to thank Sherri Dobay for joining me in the studio this week.  I would like to congratulate and wish she and Mark well as they tie the knot and marry this month.  It makes one wonder what wine and food will be served at this not so daily but decadent event….Learn more about Sherri Dobay on her website at http://www.daily-decadence.com/

Today’s unedited podcast with author Sherri Dobay, http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/09/01/wine-guy-mike-for-september-2nd/

This week WineGuyMike™ has two wonderful wines to share with you for a little dose of Daily Decadence.  Both are available especially priced at Liquid Planet, Missoula’s “Best of Beverage”, located in the Heart of Downtown Missoula.

The wines reviewed today receive the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Sideways The Play with John Colella and Julia McIlvaine

Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and U 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s Podcast with Sideways The Play stars John Colella and Julia McIlvaine; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/26/wine-guy-mike-for-august-26/

Last week’s podcast with Halter Ranch head winemaker, Kevin Sass; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/19/wine-guy-mike-for-august-19/

YouTube preview of this week’s show with Sideways The Play stars John Colella and Julia McIlvaine; http://youtu.be/eepQA8kdqMA

Recent Podcast with head winemaker of Balletto Vineyards & Winery, Mr. Anthony Beckman; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/29/wine-guy-mike-for-july-29/

Recent week’s podcast; What You Need To Know About Wine  http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/15/wine-guy-mike-for-july-15/

Recent week’s podcast; Perfect Patio Wines http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/01/wine-guy-mike-for-july-1/

Recent podcast; (full length conversation) with Maximilian Riedel, CEO Riedel Crystal of America http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/24/wine-guy-mike-for-june-24/

NBC Montana Today TV Segment; Perfect Patio Wines and food pairing; http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/Mike-Tornatore-8-7-12/-/14594602/15999458/-/67a5ri/-/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana

Rex Pickett’s 2004 novel Sideways won the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, and was nominated in four other Academy Award categories.

Set in the Santa Ynez Valley of Santa Barbara County the movie Sideways has two men in their forties on a week long road trip to the wine country, this is where things go “Sideways”.

Jim Taylor and Alexander Payne whom adapted this screenplay of Pickett’s novel won multiple awards.  In the movie Paul Giamatti portrays, Miles Raymond, who is an aspiring writer and teaches middle school English in San Diego.  Miles a real wine-aficionado is going to take his college roommate and friend, Jack Cole, played by Thomas Haden Church, an actor who is soon to be married on a road trip to the Santa Ynez Valley wine country.  

Miles and Jack have very different ideas about the idea of what quality time on a road trip in the wine country together means.  Actresses Virginia Madsen and Sandra Oh, portray local women who live and work in this beautiful wine country.  They both become romantically involved with the men and this is where the story begins.

Today though is about a new beginning and I had the pleasure of hosting two star cast members, John Colella and Julia McIlvaine, of Rex Pickett’s new theatrical production Sideways The Play.  The play which parallels the novel much more closely than the movie has been a hit since its opening and has been extended twice through September 2nd.  Sideways The Play is directed by Amelia Mulkey whom as John and Julia were quick to suggest is brilliant. (Full length podcast; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/26/wine-guy-mike-for-august-26/ )

John and Julia’s bios:

John Colella has been acting in theatre, film, and television for the last 25 years. A native Chicagoan and a graduate of the Goodman School of Drama at DePaul University where he received his BFA, John recently took home an Indie Soap Award for Best Actor in a Comedy for his portrail of Donnie G. in his Web Series-Vampire Mob.  Film credits include:  Hotel Noir, Girl Walks Into A Bar, The Chicago 8, and The Swear Police (Best Short under 5 min, Los Angeles Comedy Shorts Film Festival).  He has also been seen on Criminal Minds, Desperate Housewives, CSI:NY, American Dreams, Will & Grace, The West Wing, and NYPD Blue.  Theatre credits include:  Miles in Sideways, Cyrano in Cyrano de Bergerac, Italian American Reconciliation, Faithful, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), and Lobby Hero.

For more information on John, including full resume, demo reel, and testimonials, www.johncolella.com

Julia McIlvaine has been working as an actress for over 15 years, in Los Angeles and New York City. “Sideways” is her 4th production at the Ruskin Group Theatre, alongside “All My Sons,” “Glengarry Glen Ross” and “Cyrano,” which starred “Sideways” own John Colella. In New York, she appeared in Marsha Norman’s “Pride’s Crossing,” and “Henry VIII” at the New York Shakespeare Festival. She has also worked in four network pilots for CBS, ABC, and Fox, and three TV movies for Hallmark Hall of Fame. She is a graduate of the USC School of Theatre, and the Ruskin School.

It is everyone’s desire to take the play on the road and it sounds like this may happen in the spring of 2013.  It was great fun to have Colella and McIlvaine join me on the show, Sideways the movie is one of my personal favorite wine films for a number of reasons. 

The film had a global impact on the wine industry having stimulated great interest in wine for wine lovers and new wine drinkers alike.  As for Merlot, well it killed the varietal on a global level; it was just not sheik to have a glass on Merlot in your hand.  Pinot Noir was brought to life in an amazing way.  Globally sales of this intellectual varietal have risen to new levels and continued to enjoy lofty popularity.  This is one of the strongest trends historically for wine, yes driven by a discussion between Jack and Miles in Sideways the movie:

Jack: If they want to drink Merlot, we’re drinking Merlot.

Miles Raymond: No, if anyone orders Merlot, I’m leaving. I am NOT drinking any f**king Merlot!  

And the rest is history, literally.  Sideways The Play has sold out every night and been extended twice under the direction of Amelia Mulkey.  Each night an hour before the play high end Pinot Noir’s from the Santa Barbara wine country and Central Coast wine region are enjoyed by the attendees.

John Colella and Julia McIlvaine are dynamic personalities who enjoy very successful careers as actor and actress.  Rex Pickett now markets his own brand of Merlot and hopes to position Sideways as global brand.  Pickett, Mulkey, and the outstanding cast of Sideways The Play will be taking this production on the road and I hope that it comes to a city near you.

Julia and John I want to thank you both for taking time from your busy schedules to be featured guest on this week’s WineGuyMike Radio Show, it was great fun and I hope you will both join me again.

I have two inexpensive Pinot Noir wines that I’m recommending for you this week.  Both are available especially priced at Liquid Planet, Missoula’s “Best of Beverage”, located in the Heart of Downtown Missoula.

The wines reviewed today all receive the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Halter Ranch Vineyard Head Winemaker Kevin Sass

Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and U 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s Podcast with Halter Ranch head winemaker, Kevin Sass; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/19/wine-guy-mike-for-august-19/

Last week’s podcast with Author Becky Sue Epstein; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/12/wine-guy-mike-for-august-12/

YouTube preview of last week’s show with Becky Sue Epstein; http://youtu.be/ZrIZX-k9pHc

Recent Podcast with head winemaker of Balletto Vineyards & Winery, Mr. Anthony Beckman; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/29/wine-guy-mike-for-july-29/

Recent week’s podcast; What You Need To Know About Wine  http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/15/wine-guy-mike-for-july-15/

Recent week’s podcast; Perfect Patio Wines http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/01/wine-guy-mike-for-july-1/

Recent podcast; (full length conversation) with Maximilian Riedel, CEO Riedel Crystal of America http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/24/wine-guy-mike-for-june-24/

NBC Montana Today TV Segment; Perfect Patio Wines and food pairing; http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/Mike-Tornatore-8-7-12/-/14594602/15999458/-/67a5ri/-/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana

Hansjörg Wyss

Hansjörg Wyss

Successful Swiss-born businessman Hansjörg Wyss is a man with vision, and a man on a mission, of sustainability that is.  Wyss is a devoted philanthropist and land conservationist, he is also the founder of Halter Ranch Vineyard in Paso Robles, California.

Halter Ranch Vineyard

Halter Ranch Vineyard

Paso Robles AVA is located in the Central Coast Region of California along U.S. Highway 101, halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles.  This area supports the growth of more than 40 grape varietals. Bordeaux, Rhone, and a handful of other grape varietals produce the outstanding wines this area is noted for.

The Paso Robles AVA has the greatest daily temperature variant of any viticulture area in California.  There are many distinct microclimates, diverse soil composition, and a long growing season.  Halter Ranch Vineyard is located West of Highway 101 near the western boundary of the Paso Robles AVA.  The Halter Ranch vineyards are influenced by cool ocean breezes from the Pacific Ocean to the west, and elevation from the Santa Lucia Mountain Range to the east.  The vineyards of Halter Ranch are planted to south facing slopes rising to 1800ft. of elevation, thus creating nearly perfect terroir producing grapes of intense varietal character.

Halter Ranch Vineyard dates back to 1880’s and was part of a 3600 acre holding owned by San Francisco businessman Edwin Smith.  Smith built a grand house on the property and began dealing in farm produce and livestock; he also invested heavily in silver mining.  Smith had been an avid horse racing enthusiast, keeping a private box at Tanforan Race Track and a stable of thoroughbreds on his estate.

The estate was broken up in the early 1990’s and in 1943 the MacGillivray family purchased 1200 acres.   The family farmed the land for the next 50 years and began planting grapes in 1996.  In 2000, Hansjörg Wyss purchased 900 acres of the ranch, renovated Smith’s historic farmhouse, and enlarged the vineyard to its present 250 acres, leaving nearly 750 acres unfarmed supporting the ranches natural habitat and old growth oak groves.

New state of the art facilities have been built to complement the world class grapes grown by Halter Ranch.  The new winery is multi-level and utilizes a gravity flow system; this allows the winemaker to handle the fruit in the gentlest way possible with no pumping from the de-stemmer, to the tanks, and ultimately the barrels.   

Halter Ranch adheres to the Sustainability in Practice (SIP™) Vineyard Certification Program.  

SIP™ certification assures that a vineyard practices integrated farming and is committed to environmental stewardship, equitable treatment of employees, and economic viability.  Incorporating all Organic farming techniques and nearly all aspects of Biodynamic farming, SIP™ requires more stringent farming practices in many other key areas as seen in the chart below.

Topic of Interest

Sustainability in Practice (SIP)TM

USDA-National Organic Program

Biodynamics®

Annual Certification

X

X

X

Biodiversity

X

X

X

Vineyard Management

X

X

X

Soil Conservation

X

X

X

Pest Management

X

X

X

Water Quality

X

X

X

Organic Approved Pesticides

X

X

X

Reduced Risk Synthetic Pesticides*

X

 

 

Water Conservation

X

 

 

Energy Conservation

X

 

 

Air Quality

X

 

 

Social Equity

 

 

 

Continuing Education

X

 

 

Fruit Quality

X

 

 

Economic Viability

X

 

 

GMO Prohibition

n/a for winegrapes

X

X

Homepathic Remedies

 

 

X

Incorporate Forces of Nature

 

 

X

Lead by Kevin Sass, head winemaker for Halter Ranch Vineyard, the philosophy is simple; grow premium grapes, incorporate Old World technique and New world technologies, handle fruit gently, and produce elegant Bordeaux and Rhone style wines.  Mission sustainable, mission accomplished.

Halter Ranch Winemaker Kevin Sass

Halter Ranch Winemaker Kevin Sass

Today’s podcast with Kevin Sass, head winemaker for Halter Ranch Vineyard; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/19/wine-guy-mike-for-august-19/

Last year Halter Ranch founder Hansjörg Wyss contributed $35 million toward the protection of 1 million acres of grasslands in Montana.  Governor Schweitzer of Montana celebrated the Halter Ranch owner,(huff.to/NU4fsd), and enjoys Halter Ranch wines at various events.  Halter Ranch wines will be available in the Montana market in the near term future.

WineGuyMike™ reviewed three of the Southern Rhône Valley style wines from  Halter Ranch Vineyard, all three were beautifully made and true to the Old World style in which they were crafted by winemaker Sass.

I have two inexpensive Rhône Valley wines that I’m recommending for you this week.  Both are available especially priced at Liquid Planet, Missoula’s “Best of Beverage”, located in the Heart of Downtown Missoula.

The wines reviewed today all receive the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Author Becky Sue Epstein on Champagne: A Global History

Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and U 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s Podcast with Author Becky Sue Epstein; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/12/wine-guy-mike-for-august-12/

YouTube preview of this week’s show with Becky Sue Epstein; http://youtu.be/ZrIZX-k9pHc

Recent Podcast with head winemaker of Balletto Vineyards & Winery, Mr. Anthony Beckman; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/29/wine-guy-mike-for-july-29/

Recent week’s podcast; What You Need To Know About Wine  http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/15/wine-guy-mike-for-july-15/

Recent week’s podcast; Perfect Patio Wines http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/01/wine-guy-mike-for-july-1/

Recent podcast; (full length conversation) with Maximilian Riedel, CEO Riedel Crystal of America http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/24/wine-guy-mike-for-june-24/

NBC Montana Today TV Segment; Perfect Patio Wines and food pairing; http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/Mike-Tornatore-8-7-12/-/14594602/15999458/-/67a5ri/-/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana

This week on the WineGuyMike Radio Show I had the distinct pleasure of hosting award winning author Becky Sue Epstein.  As a long- time editor for numerous Wine & Spirit magazine publications Epstein shares her in-depth experience through her newest book Champagne: A Global History.

Epstein began her career as a restaurant reviewer for the Los Angeles Times while working in the TV and Film Industry in the 1980’s and early 1990’s.  The last 20 years she has focused her attention on Food, Wine, Spirits, and Travel writing for publications on the East and West Coasts.

Epstein and I had a terrific conversation on the show this week, this author keeps a very busy schedule between travel and research, somehow she finds time to write books.  Her award-winning cookbook The American Lighthouse Cookbook (Sourcebooks/Cumberland, co-written with Chef Ed Jackson) came out last year. Epstein’s second book is an entirely new update of the classic kitchen reference Substituting Ingredients (Sourcebooks June 2010) which is already in its third printing.  

The latest book, Champagne: A Global History (Reaktion, September 2011) spotlight’s sparkling wines from around the world, a great short read not only for Champagne and sparkling wine lovers but also those who want to learn more about this sexy, luxurious bubbly beverage.

In Epstein’s newest book she hi-lights influential people throughout world history who literally have shaped the face of this effervescent beverage.  She also provides readers with the 411 on all things sparkling in your glass.  This is important to know because this information empowers the consumer, allowing you to indulge in a budget minded way.  That’s right you can enjoy a daily glass of very good bubbly and not exceed you wine budget.

I want to thank Becky Sue Epstein for such an informative, lively, and engaging conversation.  I highly recommend this interesting and informative book, Champagne: A Global History.  This is a great short read that is only 132 pages in length, yet long on information empowering you as an expert consumer of Champagne and sparkling wine.  This book is available at Amazon.com as an ebook or hardcover online at http://amzn.to/NvZpxB Learn more about Becky Sue Epstein at www.BeckySueEpstein.com

I have two very inexpensive yet excellent sparkling wines I’m recommending for you this week.  Both are available especially priced at Liquid Planet, Missoula’s “Best of Beverage”, located in the Heart of Downtown Missoula.

The wines reviewed today all receive the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™

 You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"

Perfect Patio Wine – KECI NBC Montana Today and WineGuyMike

This mornings KECI Montana Today Feature with Rob Hudson and WineGuyMike; http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/Mike-Tornatore-8-7-12/-/14594602/15999458/-/67a5ri/-/index.html

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Anthony Beckman from Balletto Vineyards & Winery in the Russian River Valley

Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and U 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s Podcast with head winemaker of Balletto Vineyards & Winery, Mr. Anthony Beckman; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/29/wine-guy-mike-for-july-29/

Last week’s podcast; Paul Hobbs CrossBarn Winery head winemaker Scott Morrison is this week’s featured guest, http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/22/wine-guy-mike-for-july-22nd/

Recent week’s podcast; What You Need To Know About Wine  http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/15/wine-guy-mike-for-july-15/

Recent week’s podcast; Perfect Patio Wines http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/01/wine-guy-mike-for-july-1/

Recent podcast; (full length conversation) with Maximilian Riedel, CEO Riedel Crystal of America http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/24/wine-guy-mike-for-june-24/

Father’s Day podcast, Special Father’s and Special Wines http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/17/wine-guy-mike-for-june-17/

Recent Podcast with John Balletto of Balletto Vineyards & Winery http://bit.ly/WineGuyMike2

NBC Montana Today TV Segment on Easter wines and food pairing; http://www.nbcmontana.com/video/30847522/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana.

Head Winemaker Anthony Beckman

Head Winemaker Anthony Beckman

Balletto Vineyards & Winery produce wines that offer true consumer value.  This week I sat down with Anthony Beckman, the man responsible for making the delicious wines at the Balletto Winery.

The Russian River Valley in Sonoma, California where the Balletto Vineyards & Winery are located is influenced by maritime induced fog late into the morning, turning to sunny clear blue skies late into the day.  The cool prevailing winds that influence this area are perfect for growing exceptional grapes. The fog blankets the grapes with moist dew throughout the night into the late morning hours, allowing the grapes of the Russian River Valley to mature slowly which produces fruit of concentrated flavor and superior quality.  The RRV is one of the premier grape growing areas in the New World.

Beckman is one of my favorite winemakers for what he does not do to the grapes.  The Balletto wines are handled gently from the vine, to the press, not overly manipulated during fermentation, and then aged with special care.  The Balletto wines are some of my favorite to drink, they are true to the varietal character and affordable for the everyday wine drinker.  Every one of the Balletto wines are exceptional, a true consumer value.

There are two new wines from Balletto Winery that you should know about, 2010 Teressa’s Chardonnay, and the 2011 Roseof Pinot Noir.  Teressa’s Chardonnay is cold fermented preserving the natural esters of the fruit.  This wine is lush, yet crisp, a beautifully balanced wine for those who liked their chardonnay unoaked will absolutely love this wine. Today’s podcast; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/29/wine-guy-mike-for-july-29/

Beckman’s 2011 Roseof Pinot Noir is straight up the finest RoseI have ever tasted from the New or Old World.  This roseis everything I want a rose to be.  A great roseshould have beautiful color, fresh aroma of strawberries and raspberries, refreshing like a white wine with subtle mouthfeel like that of a red wine.  The Balletto 2011 Roseof Pinot Noir is all of that and then some. 

I would like to thank my friend Anthony Beckman for taking time to be on the WineGuyMike Radio Show this week and all my friends at Balletto Vineyards & Winery, one of the best consumer values in wine.

Today’s wines all receive the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™ and are available at Liquid Planet in the Heart of Downtown Missoula.  All of these excellent wine selections (see below) have been especially priced for you.  

This wine pairs well with shellfish and will be on sale for $24.99 until Friday 8/03.

This wine pairs well with Lamb and Chops, it will be on sale for $28.99 until Friday 8/03.

This wine pairs well with grilled meats having ample marbling and will be on sale for $33.99 until Friday 8/03.

Remember to stop in at Liquid Planet, Missoula’s best wine shopping experience, to purchase your WineGuyMike wines.

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"