Friday, September 10, 2021

Dustin Valette and Tony Lombardi/ great Food and Wine in the great town of Healdsburg/Part Two

Click on the link and enjoy more great food and Wine Cheers! Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine .

Valette Healdsburg/The Matheson/Dustin Valette/World Class Healdsburg Restaurants

We have recently sat down with Dustin Valette and paired great dishes with the wines of Lombardi Wines.Tony Lombardi and I were spellbound listening to chef'sgreat suggestions of these dishes to pair with Tony Lombardi's incredible wines The dream of Valette began nearly two decades ago between two brothers. While enjoying a glass of wine on their father's porch overlooking the beautiful Alexander Valley vineyards of Sonoma County, Dustin Valette and Aaron Garzini envisioned opening a restaurant together which would provide a canvas for Sonoma County farmers, winemakers and artisans to showcase their craft. The restaurant would be located in Healdsburg, the heart of Sonoma County – and the location where their great-grandfather operated bakeries. They would serve high quality, yet honest food; offer warm and impeccable service; and house a collection of boutique, small production wines. At the time, Aaron was establishing himself as a dynamic server and sommelier in Sonoma County and Dustin was in New York learning the culinary craft that would be his lifelong passion. They never lost sight of their dream. In 2015, Valette Restaurant opened its doors to the public, showcasing the brothers’ combined forty-seven years of restaurant experience and a deep dedication to Sonoma County, its food, and its wine community. Chef Dustin Valette began his restaurant career at the age of thirteen washing dishes at Catelli’s in his hometown of Geyserville, California. Two years later he took an apprenticeship at Chateau Souverain, a Francis Ford Coppola Estate, where he worked under Executive Chef Martin Courtman, – beginning the twenty-plus year culinary journey toward his dream of opening a restaurant dedicated to showcasing the rich bounty and beautiful ingredients of his Sonoma County roots. Aaron Garzini began his restaurant career at just 14 years of age in the kitchen of Catelli’s, a beloved restaurant in his hometown of Geyserville, California. A few years later, Aaron’s brother, Dustin Valette, would follow, starting his culinary career in the kitchen of the same restaurant. Those early years began a trajectory leading the two brothers back to their roots with extensive experience and honed talents. While the experience sparked Dustin’s passion to become a chef, Aaron set his sights on the front of the house. "Our wine list represents the quality and diversity of California - with a special emphasis on Sonoma County - as well as wines from around the world that inspire us, pair with our food and are simply delicious! The wine list is designed with the ingredients and flavors of the menu in mind. This is a dynamic, evolving wine program built by our winemaking community." This sereis is the result of meeting local winemakers at this great restaurant.Tony Lombardi was the first and today we feature his great wines with Dustin's amazing dishes. Founded in 2013, Tony & Christine Lombardi began a passion project that honors a rich family history of wine, food and tradition. Together, with Winemaker Cabell Coursey, they craft Small lots of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from some of the finest vineyards in the Sonoma Coast. The Pinot Noir is crafted with care from a family of growers in Petaluma, where the Lombardi Family has been since 1947. We have two features and four wines today.Three pinot Noirs and one Chardonnay from Lombardi wines. Click on the links below and join us as we enjoy these great food and wine pairings.Later we will join dustin and feature his incredible new restaurant "The Matheson"...Stay tuned! Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine .Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine .

Monday, August 30, 2021

A.Rafanelli Winery/Healdsburg, California/Stars of the local Healdsburg,and Dry Creek Area

I recently traveled out into the beautiful Dry creek region and Did new features with A. Rafanelli.I love these wines and in fact this family they producelimited supplies of the great wines from Dry Creek Valley. We have three features today! Four generations as growers and producers of fine wine, our family is proud to continue in the same winemaking and farming traditions as the founding generation. We continue to work passionately as stewards of the land with sustainable farming practices and preserving the traditional style of handcrafted wines, with the best intent to preserve the heritage for the future generations. After prohibition, Alberto and Letizia’s son Americo showed interest in the family business and was soon carrying on the tradition. He moved the winery to its current location in the Dry Creek Valley in the early 1950’s. It was here that he began to focus on the cultivation of premium Zinfandel grapes. Then, in the early 1970’s, Americo offered his first commercial release with the iconic A. Rafanelli Winery label. Following in Americo’s footsteps, his son David had the passion for growing grapes and making wine. He earned his degree in Viticulture from UC Davis and began to seek out the best land to plant more varietals for the winery portfolio. David and his wife Patty continued with the family business and propelled it to a new level of excellence. After graduating from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, David and Patty’s eldest daughter worked side-by-side with her father until becoming the head winemaker in 2000. With the help of her husband Craig Fehlman, who manages all of their vineyards, they hope to carry on the family tradition and continue improving the wines. Shelly’s sister, Stacy, is in charge of daily operations at the winery. A bright and lively vintage with instantly charming aromas of freshly picked raspberries, blackberries and cherries. Hints of cinnamon and star anise add a playful zing of spice to this elegantly styled zin. With a softness on the palate and supple tannins, this wine is enjoyable now in its vibrant youth, yet its classic character will allow for it to mature further. ,Zinfandel,Cabernet,and Merlot! We have three new features . Please clcik on the links atthe bottom of the feature,and join us!Cheers! Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine . Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine . Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine .

Bucher Wines/ Russian River Valley Fruit/The Best Of The Best!

After graduating from UC Davis in 1984, John Bucher returned to Healdsburg to manage the family dairy operation, Bucher Farms, eventually transitioning the herd to an organic dairy farm. John continued on his parent’s path of growing the dairy herd, while also looking for opportunities to diversify to higher-value crops to stay economically sustainable. In 1997, after two years of researching wine grape varietals, analyzing soils, and talking to neighboring grape growers, John planted the first Bucher Vineyard Pinot Noir blocks for Bucher Farms. Additional plantings of Pinot Noir and eventually Chardonnay followed in 1998, 1999, 2006, 2008, and 2009. Today, Bucher Vineyard Pinot Noir grapes are sold by Bucher Farms to several notable Sonoma County wineries, including Williams Selyem, Siduri Wines, Papapietro Perry, Kosta Brown, C. Donatiello, and others. Today the 700-cow organic dairy is the mainstay of the ranch, while the vineyard acreage has grown. Today, Bucher Vineyard consists of 38 acres of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes on 15 distinct blocks farmed by John for Bucher Farms. The organic practices used on the farm and dairy carry over into the vineyard, where John uses sustainable viticulture practices. With the 2011 harvest, John and his wife Diane, along with help from their children, crushed their first grapes for Bucher Wines. As a working dairy, farm, and vineyard, it is truly a family affair. Their children Elizabeth, Hannah, Jack, and Tony Klisura are the third generation of Buchers to work on this family farm. In 2013, when the first vintage of Bucher Wines was ready for release, Diane Kircher Bucher left behind her career in textile sales to work full time for the winery. Wearing too many hats to list, Diane keeps things moving. Her primary goal is to connect with as many folks as possible, getting them to taste the Bucher Vineyard wines. She is often found pouring wine for restaurateurs, retailers, and public events where anyone with a ticket can try their Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. With a lengthy farming tradition and history, the John and Diane Bucher Family look forward to sharing their grape growing and winemaking experiences with you for many years and generations to come. I visited with john and Diane and please click on the links below and enjoy our features with their wines. Weare going to visit local chefs in the near future and pair the wines with some great dishes,Cheers! Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine . Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine . Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine . Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine .

Willi's Seafood and Raw Bar/ Lombardi Wines/Healdsburg at It's Best

Recently I visited Willi's Seafood and Raw Bar.Tony Lombardi met me at the restaurant,and GM Nick joines us as we paired Tony's Wines with Willi's amazing menu. I visit Willi's often and love the staff and all the great idems on this great menu.We have four new features and at the bottom of this feature are links so you can click on each link and join us as we enjoy the beautiful Lombardi Wines with suggestions from Nick.Nick has been with Stark's Restaurants for many years and has great knowlegde of wines from all over the world. Lombardi Wines include three Pinot Noirs and a great Chardonnay. Founded in 2013, Tony & Christine Lombardi began a passion project that honors a rich family history of wine, food and tradition. Together, with Winemaker Cabell Coursey, they craft Small lots of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from some of the finest vineyards in the Sonoma Coast. The Pinot Noir is crafted with care from a family of growers in Petaluma, where the Lombardi Family has been since 1947. The 2018 Chardonnay shows beautiful aromas of layered green apple, lemon-lime citrus, orange blossom, honeysuckle and just a hint of vanilla. ON THE PALATE This 2018 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay is star bright and offers layers of lifted and vibrant peach, pear, and tangerine flavors on the palate. The finish gradually turns crisp with a final wash of mouthwatering natural acidity. This alluring Pinot Noir reveals dark aromas of blackberry, black cherry and ripe currants in the nose with a dust of cocoa. ON THE PALATE The 2018 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir delivers dark black fruits that slowly melt into all areas of the mouth. There is focused acidity and fine dry tannins that carry the rich blackberry, anise, cedar, black licorice and mocha flavors toward the mid-palate, leading to a lingering juicy finish of black cherry and dried currants. Giusti Ranch, once known as “La Colina” (The Hill), was founded by Angelo Giusti Sr. in the 1870s, and has made a significant impact on Sonoma County agriculture for over 140 years. The ranch has contributed their farming and services to different parts of the community with several crops over the last century, including olives, grapes, cherries, prunes, apples, and now back to grapes since 2000. This ranch is truly a Sonoma County treasure and we are fortunate to have access to a little fruit from this incredible vineyard. AROMATICS The 2018 Pinot Noir reveals enticing aromas of cinnamon, rich red and black berries, along with baked cherry pie. ON THE PALATE This fresh California Pinot is typical of the Russian River Valley appellation, and shows layered flavors of raspberry, black cherry and blackberry fruit compote. There is an intensity to this wine and it lingers in the mouth, even to the last sip. The 9-acre Hill Justice Vineyard with it’s rocky, red-soil and higher clay content, would blend in perfectly on Napa Valley’s Silverado Trail. However, Hill Justice is steeply sloped and sits on the side of Sonoma Mountain at nearly 1100’ elevation. Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine . Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine . Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine . Click here and join us as we enjoy great food and wine .

Saturday, June 5, 2021

La Gare Patio / Balletto Wines/ Winemaker Anthony Beckman

A beautiful early summer evening and we are enjoying patio dinning at La Gare French Restaurant.We have three great new features with Anthony Beckman.We will look at the tasting notes of each wine and then click on the links at the bottom of this feature,and join us as we discuss each wine. first we open the new vintage of the 2015 Brut Sparkling wine. a great wine,and the new vintage is amazing! 2015 Sparkling Brut Rosé The coral color sets the stage, and the tiny, persistent bubbles confirm that this is a serious sparkler. The aromas are integrated and full with a dollop of cherry-strawberry that highlights the core mineral focus. Delicate, pretty & delicious. The wine is full flavored and textured throughout, and the finish is crisp and lasting with a wonderful tickling-bubble sensation. A light, yeasty mid-palate — with both weight and flavors — lifts and carries this wine to the finish. we also have two great Pinot Noirs .First the 2018 BCD Single Vineyard Pinot Noir. this wine is now a new favorite of mine,and soon to be a new favorite of yours! 2018 Pinot Noir -BCD Pinot Noir! Bright and dark simultaneously, with mocha and earth aromas playing off fresh cherries. It has a wide and silky palate, booming aromas and just enough acidity and tannins to pull the wine through to a long and lasting finish. It's quite a ride. Under the initial aromas is a distinct and interesting spice undertone that aromatically lifts the wine, but it’s the mid- palate weight, texture and perfect touch of acidity that define it. It’s full and coating, start to finish, wave upon wave of pinot pleasure. And let's open another great single Vineyard Pinot Noir! Balletto has many single Vineyard Pinot Noirs. 2017 Pinot Noir - Winery Block There's something alluring and fascinating in this wine. Each year, the Winery Bock produces a boisterous, booming-out-of-the-glass pinot that achieves an elevated seriousness through a wonderful structure, balance and intensity. It shows focused dark-berry liqueur blended with equal parts earthiness, savory dried rose petal and low-level mocha and spice aromas. They all hit at once. And wow, it'­s a knockout. All three wines are outstanding and Chef roger has made a great display of matches to go with these wine.Click on the links at the bottom of the page and join us!We saved you a seat!Cheers! Click here and join us as we enjoy great wines and food. Click here and join us as we enjoy great wines and food. Click here and join us as we enjoy great wines and food.

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Lombardi Wines/Tony Lombardi/Sonoma County Wines

Today we have four great wines to tell you about! The wines of Tony Lomabrdi.we also have great new audio features on these wines.We will visit their website and share some of the notes and history of these amazing Sonoma County wines. We will start with the Sonoma coast Chardonnay and Pinot Noir,after we tell you about the history of this great label. Are you ready? Founded in 2013, Tony & Christine Lombardi began a passion project that honors a rich family history of wine, food and tradition. Together, with Winemaker Cabell Coursey, they craft Small lots of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from some of the finest vineyards in the Sonoma Coast. The Pinot Noir is crafted with care from a family of growers in Petaluma, where the Lombardi Family has been since 1947. This 2018 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay is star bright and offers layers of lifted and vibrant peach, pear, and tangerine flavors on the palate. The finish gradually turns crisp with a final wash of mouthwatering natural acidity. The 2018 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir delivers dark black fruits that slowly melt into all areas of the mouth. There is focused acidity and fine dry tannins that carry the rich blackberry, anise, cedar, black licorice and mocha flavors toward the mid-palate, leading to a lingering juicy finish of black cherry and dried currants. 91 Points – Wine Enthusiast we have two great audio features and the first one features these two wines.Click on the link at the bottom of the page and hangout with Tony Lomardi and myself for a few minutes. Our second audio features features the single Vineyard wines of Lombardi wines. Giusti Ranch 2018 this wine is very special and should be on your cellar list. This fresh California Pinot is typical of the Russian River Valley appellation, and shows layered flavors of raspberry, black cherry and blackberry fruit compote. There is an intensity to this wine and it lingers in the mouth, even to the Hill Justice Vineyard 2018 PINOT NOIR AROMATICS The 2018 Pinot Noir reveals deep purple color and has rich aromas of blueberry, blackberry and chocolate. ON THE PALATE This Petaluma Gap Pinot Noir makes an intensely elegant and delicious wine, delivering ripe raspberry, blackberry, cardamom and forest pine which slowly melts into all areas of the mouth. There is a nice backbone of fine tannins that provide structure and strength toward the mid-palate, leading to a lingering and persistent juicy finish of sweet .these wines are featured in our second audio link at the bottom of the page. I'm ready!! Can we pour you a glass ? Cheers! Click here and join us as we enjoy great wines and food. Click here and join us as we enjoy great wines and food.