2002 San Simeon Chardonnay Monterey, CA

Part of the Riboli Family Wine Estates, San Simeon wine comes from vineyards in both Monterey and Paso Robles. The winery employs sustainable farming techniques as well as traditional winemaking methods to deliver it’s final product.
Winemakers Anthony Riboli and Arnaud Debons barrel ferment, stir and age on the lees, and ferment each lot separately.

As far as I can tell, the Monterey region being farmed looks a bit inland, following down highway 101 after Salinas as you travel towards San Miguel. Driving down this root, you notice thousands of acres of unclaimed wine grapes being grown along the freeway. Maybe some of that ends up here.

Full Disclosure: This was a press sample.

Vintage: 2002
Winery: San Simeon
Varietal: Chardonnay
Appellation: “Monterey”
Price: $15
Notes: A nice crisp wine, with hints of oak and apple on the nose, good acidity with a simple finish. A good amount of Apple and Vanilla on the palate, this wine would accompany a cheese plate nicely.
Score: 86pts

Bulk American Wineries Stoop To New Lows

In and effort to maximize profits, a loophole in the law is allowing some American wine makers to blend up to 25% foreign juice into wine labeled ‘American’. The law does not allow the foreign wine to be blended if the wine is designated as Californian. Companies like The Wine Group, the third largest US Winery, are taking advantage of amazingly cheap wine from countries like Australia.

You would think there was enough California wine to use, but this is a recent phenomenon. You could say we are experiencing the more negative effects of globalisation firsthand,’ Karen Ross, president of the CAWG (California Association of Winegrape Growers) told decanter.com.

Ross comments part of the reason imports are on the rise is to meet the demand for hot varietals like Pinot Noir.

So why is this a bad thing? More affordable wine for all right? Well, the average American wine consumer is confused enough as it is, and instead of benefiting either country with brand recognition, all is lost behind a non descriptive label. Practices like this also hurt the Grower/Winery relationship, forcing local growers to compete on an uneven playing field.

Read [decanter.com]

Overweight Mice Boost Wine Sales

In the 4 weeks ending November 18th, wine sales surged after the announcement that overweight mice that were given resveratrol where able to run longer and outlive those who weren’t.

Red wines accounted for a record 52.4 percent of table wine dollar sales in food, drug and liquor stores as measured by ACNielsen in the four weeks ending Nov. 18, compared with just less than 50 percent in the immediately preceding four-week period, and 51 percent in the comparable year-ago time frame.

You can’t buy this kind of press. It’s great that the wine industry as a whole benefits from news like this, especially when a glut of grapes has been reported around the world. Perfect timing I’d say.

Read [SFGate.com]