Customer Service: Owen

Anyone who has ever called or emailed us has interacted with Owen at some point or another over the last decade.  What some of you may not know is that he now lives on a remote mountainside overlooking a bay in Alaska.  Completely off the grid. Once a…

Legs

No matter what your spouse claims about that bottle that was there last night – but is somehow missing now – it did not grow legs and walk away. So what do the wine geeks mean when they speak to a wine’s legs? It’s the way the wine…

Négociant

Well, you’ve at least heard the term from us a number of times, if no where else, as that’s what Cam is. But what does it mean? A “Négociant” is someone who buys wine from someone else and labels it under their own label. It’s a title for…

Noble Grapes

In tasting room, restaurant, or wine shop conversations you might hear the term Noble Grapes, but what are they referring to? This is a two-part answer. Depending on context, they may be referring to either The Six Noble Grapes or referring to The Five Noble Grapes of Bordeaux. It can be…

Where Have All the Malbecs Gone?

San Francisco, CA.  2007. I was the Sommelier & General Manager at multi-year Wine Spectator list awarded, multi-year Michelin-starred Yabbies Coastal Kitchen on Polk St., between Vallejo & Green in the historic Russian Hill District – the restaurant where I actually met Cam for the first time as…

Decant

Wine Term: Decant Variations: Open, Oxygenate, Aerate, Breathe, Breathing What it really means: Allowing the wine to interact with oxygen after the cork is removed. While there are all sorts of currently, highly marketed devices and fancy (expensive) vessels that double as art pieces, a good old glass…

Corked

Wine Term: Corked Variations: Cork taint, Tainted, TCA, Systemic TCA, Trichloroanisole What it really means: The wine has an off-putting musty, mushroomy fragrance and taste. This is not in regards to Pinot Noirs, where the mushroom fragrance and taste is very welcoming.  And this is not in reference…

Today is National Beer Day

A very wise, well-traveled winemaker once told us: “It takes a lot of cheap beer to make great wine.” Today is a day to celebrate for us, as America is home to the finest cheap beers on the planet, and we only deal in great wines. So crack…

Varietal

Wine Term: Varietal Variations: Single varietal, Varietal wine What it really means: The wine is made from* and labeled as a single grape variety. A varietal wine is labeled as a single grape wine.  Examples would be wines labeled as: Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot,…