Visiting Villa Maria in Marlborough-Part 2

This is the second of a two-part series about our wonderful time at Villa Maria‘s Cellar Door in Marlborough, New Zealand. Our host, winemaker Kathrin (Kat) Jankowiec, is talented, creative, knowledgeable and friendly. We couldn’t have asked for a better experience at the most-awarded winery in New Zealand.

And the wines are magnificent. Kat poured nine for us, ranging in price from $16-$43. Read on for more details. And then, head out to your nearest retailer that sells Villa Maria wine to pick up a few bottles. Of note, Ste. Michelle Wine Estates is a distribution partner for Villa Maria, therefore many wines are readily available in the U.S.

Continue reading

Wonderful Woodward Canyon

Rick and Darcey Small founded Woodward Canyon Winery in 1981, the second winery in the Walla Walla Valley. (Leonetti Cellar opened just four years earlier.) Rick’s family farmed for multiple generations on land that is now the estate vineyard.

In 2003, winemaker Kevin Mott joined the team. And today, Woodward Canyon is one of the most-acclaimed wineries in Walla Walla.

Woodward Canyon is known for its gorgeous Cabernet Sauvignons, in addition to Bordeaux-style blends, Merlot and Chardonnay. Of note, the winemaking focus is on quality over quantity.

We visit the Woodward Canyon tasting room every time we’re in Walla Walla. Recently, we stopped in when we attended the Wine Bloggers Conference.

These are our favorite “special occasion” wines during that trip: Old Vines Cabernet Sauvignon, Charbonneau Red and Artist Series Cabernet Sauvignon.
Continue reading

Murrieta’s Well Wins Again

We have been fans of Murrieta’s Well blends, The Spur (red), and The Whip (white), since 2011, and their latest vintages continue to impress.

We enjoyed samples of these two blends, plus a few other wines in the portfolio of this popular Livermore Valley winery, at a recent Snooth virtual tasting with Murrietta’s Well talented winemaker Robbie Meyer.

But before getting to our tasting notes, Murrieta’s Well has credentials worth mentioning – it is one of California’s original wineries, propagated in 1883 with vineyard cuttings from Chateau Margaux and Chateau d’Yquem in France. The winery is owned by Philip Wente of Wente Vineyards, the country’s oldest, continuously operated family-owned winery. And now, the wines …

Continue reading

San Juan Vineyards Joins Corliss Family

Big news in Washington state’s wine industry: Michael and Lauri Corliss, the owners of Corliss Estate, Tranche Cellars and Secret Squirrel as well as three vineyards in Walla Walla, Red Mountain and Yakima, have purchased San Juan Vineyards in Friday Harbor. The sale is effective on Feb. 1.
Continue reading