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WineRelease.com's May 15, 2012 Monthly Newsletter.


Greetings from WineRelease.com, now 1,865 winery listings strong.

Those who have been subscribers for some time will recall that one of our favorite northern California winery events each year is the Kendall Jackson tomato festival, held in September. After many years of living in urban environments in both San Francisco and Madrid, we now have our first ‘outside space’, in the form of a small patio behind our house in SF. We took advantage of our ~300 square feet and headed up to the Kendall Jackson spring tomato plant sale, purchasing 6 plants for our rain gutter garden. We’ve managed to keep them alive for about a week now - I’ll let you know how it goes.

This past month brought several unexpected opportunities for me to share my love of wine with a broader audience. KRON, a local tv station, asked me to be a guest on their Saturday morning news show, discussing my monthly wine buying publication, WineBlueBook (KRON segment). I’ve done this show a few times in the past and it’s always a good time and great opportunity to talk about and taste some great wine values. The Cheese School in San Francisco asked me to co-teach a cheese and wine pairing course with Laura Werlin, a James Beard award winning author and cheese expert. It was a fun event and one that I’d highly recommend.

One night a few weeks ago, an old friend from NYC was in town and popped by the house to meet the baby. With one of our sponsor wines, the 2008 Wharton, Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon on hand, and some amazing cheeses leftover from the Cheese School class, we had an impromptu gathering and enjoyed the subtle hints of cocoa and vanilla that the Cab brought, pairing amazingly well with each cheese.

Another great find from one of our sponsors was the Wrath Chardonnay. We’ve had some amazing weather these past few weeks, experiencing sunny days in the high 70’s (which is fairly unheard of in San Francisco). The other day, we had an early dinner at Elite Café (in our neighborhood) to take advantage of the warm evening and their $1 oyster happy hour special. As is typical in San Francisco, it got fairly cold as the sun went down, so we bundled up, headed home, cranked up the heater and shared the bottle of Wrath with a good friend who had joined us for dinner. A perfect ending to a gorgeous evening.


And now, onto the wine.


May 2012 Wine Releases

  • Alloro Vineyard; 2011 Riesling, 2011 Rose
  • àMaurice Cellars; 2009 Columbia Valley Chardonnay (289 cases, $28), 2009 Columbia Valley Syrah (231 cases, $34), 2009 Columbia Valley The Cummings Red Blend (469 cases, $35), 2009 Columbia Valley Malbec (324 cases, $35)
  • Amicus Cellars; 2009 Barrel Lot Series Merlot
  • Andrew Rich Wines; 2011 Croft Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, 2011 Tabula Rasa Rosé Grenache/Mourvèdre, 2010 Roussanne
  • Arista Winery; 2010 Russian River Valley U.V. El Diablo Vineyard Chardonnay, 2010 Anderson Valley/Mendocino Ridge Pinot Noir (345 cases, $38), 2010 Mendocino Ridge Perli Vineyard Pinot Noir (240 cases, $52), 2010 Russian River Valley Toboni Vineyard Pinot Noir (250 cases, $58), 2010 Dry Creek Valley Smokey Ridge Vineyard Zinfandel (422 cases, $36)
  • Banknote Wine Company; 2009 Napa Valley The Vault Red Wine (750 cases, $32)
  • Bartholomew Winery; 2010 Washington Roussanne ($17), 2010 Aligote ($19), 2009 Rattlesnake Hills Malbec ($29)
  • Bishop’s Peak; 2011 Sauvignon Blanc, 2009 Petite Sirah
  • Black Cat Vineyard; 2009 Napa Valley Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon (350 cases, $55)
  • Bogle Winery; 2011 California Chardonnay, 2010 California Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Bokisch Vineyards; 2011 Albariño, 2011 Garnacha Blanca, 2011 Rosado, 2011 Verdelho
  • Bonaccorsi Wine Company; 2009 Melville Chardonnay, 2009 La Encantada Pinot Noir, 2009 Fiddlestix Pinot Noir, 2009 Sanford and Benedict Pinot Noir, 2009 Julia's Pinot Noir, 2007 Bien Nacido Syrah
  • Cafaro Cellars; 2009 Merlot (200 cases, $28)
  • Cameron Hughes Wine; 2009 Napa Valley Lot 304 Meritage (2,000 cases, $16), 2009 Napa Valley Lot 316 Cabernet Sauvignon (220 cases, $20), 2008 Santa Maria Valley Lot 268 Pinot Noir (600 cases, $15)
  • Capture; 2011 Tradition Sauvignon Blanc ($30), 2011 Les Pionniers Sauvignon Blanc ($45)
  • Castello di Amorosa; 2011 Gioia Rosato di Sangiovese ($24)
  • Chase Family Cellars; 2011 Sauvignon Blanc (175 cases), 2011 Hayne Vineyard Zinfandel Rose
  • Chasseur Winery; 2010 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir (176 cases, $40), 2008 Sonoma Coast Syrah (174 cases), 2010 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir (393 cases, $40), 2010 Russian River Valley Chardonnay (323 cases, $40)
  • Cielo Estate; 2008 Zinfandel, 2008 Syrah, 2008 Petite Sirah
  • Clark-Claudon Vineyards; 2011 Wild Iris Sauvignon Blanc (480 cases, $28)
  • Cliff Lede Vineyards; 2009 Rock Block Cabernet Sauvignon, 2009 Cinnamon Rhapsody Cabernet Sauvignon, 2011 Sauvignon Blanc
  • Clos Du Val; 2008 Napa Valley Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Clos Saron; 2010 A Deeper Shade of Blue Cinsault/Syrah/Roussanne.(78 cases, $32)
  • Daedalus Cellars; 2011 Jezebel Blanc Riesling/Pinot Gris/Gewürztraminer, 2011 Pinot Noir Blanc (17 cases)
  • Dunham Cellars; 2008 Lewis Vineyard Merlot ($75), 2011 Shirley Mays Chardonnay ($24), 2009 Syrah ($35), 2010 Three Legged Red ($19)
  • Dunstan; 2011 Rosé of Pinot Noir (43 cases, $24)
  • Dutton-Goldfield; 2010 Rued Vineyard Chardonnay, 2010 Azaya Ranch Vineyard Pinot Noir
  • Elizabeth Spencer Wines; 2011 Chenin Blanc ($30)
  • Envy Wines; 2011 Rose ($25), 2011 Sauvignon Blanc ($25)
  • Fort Ross Vineyard & Winery; 2010 Sonoma Coast Fort Ross-Seaview Fort Ross Vineyard Chardonnay ($32), 2010 Sonoma Coast Fort Ross-Seaview Fort Ross Vineyard Pinot Noir ($28), 2010 Sonoma Coast Fort Ross-Seaview Fort Ross Vineyard Chardonnay ($36), 2010 Sonoma Coast Fort Ross-Seaview Fort Ross Vineyard Bicentennial Bottling Pinot Noir ($42)
  • Hall Winery; 2008 Darwin Red Wine ($45)
  • Harris Estate Vineyards; 2009 Lakeview Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (220 cases, $125)
  • Heibel Ranch Vineyards; 2009 Lappa’s Napa Valley Red Blend
  • Hudson Ranch; 2010 Pick Up Sticks Red Blend
  • James Cole Estate Winery; 2009 Aliento, 2009 Petite Verdot, 2009 Il Mostro, 2010 Chardonnay
  • K Vintners; 2011 Columbia Valley Viognier, 2010 Wahluke Slope Milbrandt Syrah, 2010 Wahluke Slope Pheasant Vineyard Syrah, 2010 The Beautiful Syrah
  • Kapcsándy Family Winery; 2010 Napa Valley Yountville Rosé Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot/Cabernet Franc/Petit Verdot (325 cases, $72)
  • Kimmel Vineyards; 2008 Mendocino Merlot (350 cases, $38)
  • King Ferry Winery; 2011 Silver Lining Chardonnay
  • Kinkead Ridge Vineyard and Winery; 2011 Viognier/Roussanne, 2011 White Revelation, 2011 Riesling, 2011 River Village Cellars Traminette
  • Kramer Vineyards; 2011 Rosé of Pinot Noir (84 cases, $18)
  • La Frenz; 2011 Sauvignon Blanc, 2011 Semillon, 2011 Riesling, 2011 Viognier, 2011 Alexandria, 2010 Merlot, 2010 Shiraz
  • Loos Family Winery; 2011 Napa Valley Galleron Road Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc
  • Madroña Vineyards; 2009 Signature Cabernet Franc, 2011 Hillside Nebbiolo Rose
  • Marilyn Merlot; 2011 Lake County Sauvignon Blonde Sauvignon Blanc ($16)
  • Matthiasson; 2011 Napa Valley White Wine
  • Melka Wines; 2009 Napa Valley Jumping Goat Vineyard Métisse Cabernet Sauvignon (400 cases, $155), 2008 Saint-Émilion Le Châtelet Vineyard Métisse (120 cases, $145)
  • Mirror Wine Co; 2011 Sauvignon Blanc (680 cases, $24)
  • Murphy Vineyards; 2007 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon ($40)
  • Nichelini Winery; 2011 Sauvignon Blanc (324 cases)
  • Penner-Ash Wine Cellars; 2010 Dussin Vineyard Estate Pinot Noir, 2010 Hyland Vineyard Pinot Noir, 2010 Elevee Vineyard Pinot Noir, 2011 Viognier, 2011 Roseo
  • Presqu'ile Winery; 2011 Santa Maria Valley Sauvignon Blanc ($22), 2011 Santa Maria Valley Rosé of Pinot Noir ($18), 2010 Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay ($35), 2010 Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir ($42)
  • Red Cap Vineyards; 2008 Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon, 2011 Rutherford Sauvignon Blanc
  • Red Car Wine; 2010 Sonoma Coast Trolley Series Chardonnay, 2010 Sonoma Coast Trolley Series Pinot Noir
  • Robert Karl Cellars; 2009 Malbec (100 cases, $25), 2011 Rose of Cab Franc (50 cases, $15)
  • Rubissow; 2007 Mt. Veeder Trompettes Cabernet Franc/Merlot (76 cases, $65)
  • Schrader Cellars; 2009 Black Sears Vineyard Vieux-Os Zinfandel, 2009 Tofanelli Vineyard Vieux-Os Zinfandel
  • Seghesio Family Vineyards; 2010 Home Ranch Zinfandel, 2010 San Lorenzo Block 8 Zinfandel
  • Smasne Cellars; 2009 Gravel Bar ($44), 2009 Malbec ($38), 2011 Rosella Rose ($17), 2010 Ice Wine ($36), 2011 Pioneer Port ($36)
  • Southbrook Vineyards; 2010 Whimsy! Uncloaked Merlot ($34.95), 2010 Whimsy! Who you Calling Petit Petit Verdot (17 cases, $34.95), 2009 Whimsy! Renewed Vows Cabernet Franc ($34.95), 2010 Whimsy Chardonnay ($34.95)
  • Spottswoode Winery; 2009 Napa Valley St. Helena Lyndenhurst Cabernet Sauvignon (727 cases, $60)
  • Spring Mountain Vineyard; 2008 Elivette ($125), 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon ($75), 2009 Syrah ($55), 2010 Sauvignon Blanc ($40)
  • Syzygy; 2008 Columbia Valley Red Wine Cabernet Sauvignon/Syrah/Malbec/Merlot (557 cases, $24)
  • Taft Street Winery; 2008 Garagistes Pinot Noir ($28)
  • Talley Vineyards; 2010 Oliver's Vineyard Chardonnay, 2010 Rincon Vineyard Chardonnay, 2010 Rosemary's Vineyards Chardonnay, 2010 Edna Valley Pinot Noir
  • Terra Blanca Vineyards; 2011 Columbia Valley Arch Terrace Dry Rosé ($18), 2008 Red Mountain Signature Series Block 5 Chardonnay ($22), 2011 Red Mountain Signature Series Marsanne ($24), 2008 Red Mountain Signature Series Mourvedre ($38), 2011 Yakima Valley Arch Terrace Sauvignon Blanc ($15)
  • Three Monkeys Wines; 2010 Illume Chardonnay (90 cases, $30)
  • Three Rivers Winery; 2008 Svelte, 2010 Geoff Tate Insania Red, 2011 Geoff Tate Insania White
  • Torii Mor Winery; 2010 La Colina Vineyard Pinot Noir, 2010 Deux Verres Reserve Pinot Noir, 2010 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
  • Toucan Wines; 2010 Old Vine Carignane
  • Vellum Wine Craft; 2009 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, 2011 White
  • Vie Winery; 2009 Roussanne ($29), 2008 L’Intruse The Intruder Mourvèdre ($39), 2008 Alder Springs Syrah ($48), 2008 Thompson Vineyard Syrah ($45), 2008 White Hawk Vineyard Syrah ($45), 2008 Beatty Ranch Zinfandel
  • Whetstone Wine Cellars; 2009 Napa Valley Phoenix Ranch Vineyard Syrah (176 cases, $55), 2010 Russian River Valley Pleasant Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir (200 cases, $50)
  • William Church Winery; 2011 Viognier
  • Woodhouse Family Cellars; 2011 Kennedy Shah Rosé of Mourvèdre, 2007 Rattlesnake Hills Kennedy Shah Reserve Cabernet Franc,
  • Youngberg Hill Vineyard; 2009 Jordan Pinot Noir, 2009 Natasha Pinot Noir, 2011 Aspen Pinot Gris, 2011 Pinot Blanc

June 2012 Wine Releases

  • àMaurice Cellars; 2011 Walla Walla Estate Sparrow Viognier ($36), 2009 Walla Walla Estate Night Owl Red Blend ($47), 2009 Walla Walla Estate Amparo Malbec, 2009 Walla Walla Estate Fred Syrah
  • Anam Cara Cellars; 2011 Nicholas Estate Dry Riesling, 2011 Nicholas Estate Riesling, 2011 Nicholas Estate Rose of Pinot Noir, 2011 Gewurztraminer Dessert Wine
  • Donkey and Goat (previously A Donkey and Goat); 2011 El Dorado Grenache Noir (175 cases, $27), 2011 El Dorado Grenache Blanc (250 cases, $27), 2011 El Dorado Improbable Chardonnay (75 cases, $24)
  • Dutton-Goldfield; 2010 Morelli Lane Vineyard Zinfandel
  • Figgins; 2009 Walla Walla Valley Estate Red Cabernet Sauvignon/Petite Verdot/Merlot, 2010 Estate Riesling
  • Foundry Vineyards; 2011 White on White Viognier/Chardonnay/Roussanne/Orange Muscat (250 cases, $19)
  • Jelly Jar Wine; 2010 Barbera
  • Kelleher; 2011 Block 21 Sauvignon Blanc (200 cases, $28)
  • La Frenz; 2011 Chardonnay, 2011 Rose, 2010 Montage, 2010 Malbec, 2010 Reserve Chardonnay, 2010 Reserve Pinot Noir, 2009 Grand Total Reserve, 2011 Vintage Port
  • Mario Bazan Cellars; 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Penner-Ash Wine Cellars; 2010 Shea Vineyard Pinot Noir, 2009 Syrah
  • Quivet Cellars; 2010 Kenefick Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon (96 cases, $68), 2010 Spring Mountain District Cabernet Sauvignon (73 cases, $65), 2010 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (96 cases, $48)
  • Revenant Winery; 2009 Napa Valley Cuvée Vallée Proprietary Blend (47 cases, $35)
  • Talley Vineyards; 2010 Estate Pinot Noir
  • The Four Graces; 2010 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
  • Tor Kenward Family Vineyard; 2010 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010 Hommage Allan Syrah
  • VIADER Vineyards & Winery; 2011 DARE by Viader dry Rose
  • William Church Winery; 2009 Syrah
  • Woodinville Wine Company; 2011 Rose, 2011 Sauvignon Blanc


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The following 110 winery information pages have been updated since April 15, 2012:

Wine Quote of the Month: "Drink today, and drown all sorrow; you shall perhaps not do it tomorrow. Best, while you have it, use your breath; there is no drinking after death." Beaumont and Fletcher


Till next month.


Neil Monnens


Special thanks to the following sponsors of WineRelease.com: Alysian Wines, Forlorn Hope Wines, Fulcrum Wines, Jelly Jar Wine, Kimmel Vineyards, Lewelling Vineyards, MARA Winery, Martin Estate, Parry Cellars, Relic Wines, Selene Wines, Stein Family Wines, VIADER Vineyards & Winery, Vineyard 7 & 8, Wharton Wines and Wrath . They help make WineRelease possible.

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