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The soul of Indian Soil Carefully Crafted into our Boutique wines
March 21, 2012 04:00 AM Copyright SFGate. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Late Harvest Chenin Blanc (dessert Wine)

DC All-Star Chef Maziar Farivar will pair wines from Starlite Vineyards with traditional Persian foods at a James Beard House dinner in honor of Norouz, the Iranian new year holiday.

Cabernet Shiraz India

Starlite Vineyards. Chef Maziar Farivar and his business partner Shahab Farivar of the Peacock Café in Washington, DC will serve up a feast of traditional Iranian dishes to celebrate Norouz on Wednesday, March 21 at 7 PM.

Rosé India



Hirsch, a former New Yorker, is among a couple of dozenvintners and grape growers in Sonoma’s brand-new AmericanViticultural Area (AVA) Fort Ross-Seaview appellation, whichbecame official in January.

Chenin Blanc

To discover why this region is regarded as pinot paradiseand whether the wines deserve the hype, I find myself navigatinghairpin curves up narrow dirt roads to an altitude of 1,500feet, where vineyards poke above the fog like sunny islands.

Late Harvest Chenin Blanc (dessert Wine)

Beyond steep redwood-forested slopes, I can see the bluePacific three miles away. It’s taken me 50 minutes to go sevenmiles, and luckily I’ve encountered no other cars.

Cabernet Shiraz India



The attributes of Governor's Cup winner 2009 Hodder Hill Meritage from Glen Manor Vineyards have been well documented — elegant blend with a complexity that one friend said matched up to any California wines he had sampled.

Sauvignon Blanc

But what about the other wines in the 2012 Governor's Cup Case, a concept that listed the 12 wines with the highest scores in the competition? A look at the characteristics of those 12 gold medal winners follows. All were tasted during the Virginia Wine Expo last month.

Chenin Blanc

2007 Meritage: Blend of cabernet franc (30 percent), merlot (30 percent), petit verdot (20 percent), cabernet sauvignon (20 percent); cherry and raspberry flavors lead to a bit of spice on the finish; big, firm tannins; available locally ($25-$30) at Vino Market, Kroger-Atlee; also can be shipped by winery ($35); www.delfossewine.com .

Late Harvest Chenin Blanc (dessert Wine)



A passion for appassimento wines in Walla Walla Gino Cuneo has been making wines in Oregon, with both Washington and Oregon grapes, for more than two decades. His recent move to Walla Walla has accelerated his efforts to replicate some of the most unusual and labor-intensive wines in the world — the appassimento-style wines (amarone and recioto) of the Veneto.

Rosé

I'M NOT sure if it should be considered the last grape crush of 2011 or the first of 2012. But on a chilly, late January afternoon, at the Artifex custom crush facility in Walla Walla, several truckloads of barbera and grenache grapes arrived and were fork-lifted into the waiting de-stemmer.

Sauvignon Blanc

The grapes were shriveled and sweet smelling. This was not ice wine. In fact, the fruit had been harvested at the Coyote Canyon vineyard back on Oct. 19. For the next three months, it was laid out on drying racks in the workshop of Gino Cuneo.

Chenin Blanc



Fast forward to 2012, and the introduction of Concannon Irish Whiskey. With the help of Cooley Distillery, Concannon is now bringing the craftsmanship and ingenuity that give distinction to their wines to the world of Irish whiskey. Theirs is a refined blend of malt and grain whiskeys that is craft distilled for the proper balance of character and purity.  The whiskey-making process begins in Ireland with local incredients and the Cooley high standards of whiskey making. Concannon then adds their own twist to the whiskey by finishing the aging process in their Petite Sirah barrels. It truly is liquid art. Concannon Irish Whiskey is the work of renowned, award-winning Master Blender, Noel Sweeney. The finished product has a taste profile with a full, clean taste delicately balanced between honey sweet, citrus and malt flavors, and a fresh oak finish.

Cabernet Shiraz

Concannon wine tasting suggestions: Crimson & Clover, Heritage Petite Sirah, Captain Joe’s Petite Sirah, Viognier, Assemblage Red, Mother Vine Cabernet Sauvignon.

Rosé

Want to try your hand at mixology? Here are some great mixing cocktail recipes : The Conhattan, Concannon Raspberry Basil Smash, the Old Fashioned Concannon, and a personal fav, Concannon & Bubbles.  Find these recipes and more on the Concannon Irish Whiskey website.

Sauvignon Blanc



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