Barrel Tasting at Ridge Vineyards

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Yesterday I was lucky enough to be invited to a barrel tasting at Ridge Vineyards in Cupertino, California. Ridge is located near the top of Monte Bello Ridge up in the Santa Cruz Mountains – thus the current name of the winery, Ridge, and the name of their most special wine, Monte Bello. It was started in 1885 and made its first vintage in 1892 under the Monte Bello Winery label.

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V. Sattui Zinfandel 2009

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Here’s another great V. Sattui from the depths of the closet in the spare room. This Zinfandel is from the Gilsson Vineyard in the Russian River Valley whose climate is much cooler than other vineyards in the wine country thanks to the fog that rolls in from the Pacific ocean, making it a great place to grow Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays. Those wines from this region are well known and appreciated, but perhaps a more surprising success in these cooler climes is Zinfandel.

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V. Sattui Family Red 2010

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V. Sattui Winery is my grandma’s favorite place on earth. Every time I come home we make a pilgrimage up to Napa to bask in the glorious food and wine Sattui has to offer. I’ve tried to convince her there are other wineries and great restaurants to be explored, but she’s quite content to get a bottle from Sattui’s cellar, pick up some cheese, pâté and bread from their deli and head out to the shaded courtyard to enjoy them. Consequently, my suitcase is always laden with Sattui bottles tenderly wrapped in bubble wrap and Ziploc bags, socks, t-shirts, you name it. Anything to keep the precious jewels safe on the journey.

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Wine Tasting Notes

A fellow food blogger, The Winegetter, posted a link to this really useful tasting sheet and I thought it would be a good thing to use in future to write up my wine notes and I’ve put it here for anyone else who may find it helpful. It’s not always easy to pinpoint exactly what you want to say about wine, so hopefully it’ll prove a useful guide!