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Brain Wines
Brain Wines
Member Since 2012
Profile Views: 69
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WineTable writer Keith Hoffman recently sat down with Steve Peck, one of the winemakers at one of the most well-known Paso Robles vineyards, J. Lohr. Read his interview with Steve.


Last month I finally went to Paso Robles, a place that had been on my wine spit bucket list for years. The good folks at the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance made a number of great suggestions regarding wineries to visit, some of which I knew of already, and some I had never heard of. Caliza Winery was in the latter group, and I’m very happy I went for a visit. 


From a geographically unique part of California's Paso Robles region, we scored an interview with Daniel Daou, high-tech exec turned philosophical and precise winemaker. Check out his candid answers to questions about the winemaking profession.


Time Travel and Brilliant Wine
By: Brain Wines
Posted: Apr. 12, 2013

A gorgeous estate, impeccable architecture and tasty wines are what you’ll find if you meander your way down the drive at Jordan Vineyard & Winery in Healdsburg, Calif. Read Keith Hoffman’s review of the trip and make sure to plan time to try the recipes developed by Jordan’s chef.


Two Recipes from Jordan Winery
By: Brain Wines
Posted: Apr. 12, 2013

If you’re planning a menu for a formal affair, these chef-developed recipes and wine pairings from the chef at Jordan Vineyard & Winery will make your guests ooh and aah. Savory, full of flavor, incredible presentation. This is a pair of recipes that just ask for black tie.


Williams. Selyem. Two words, that when put together make wine purists, pinot noir nuts, and chardonnay lovers (that appreciate the proper use of oak) swoon.  Swoon, and wait.


Clay went from banks to tanks, and is all the better for it. In fact, he professes to have the “coolest job on the coast” and it is hard to disagree. In his answers below he reveals, for me at least, an unexpected passion for pinot blanc (which frankly is going to make me seek out more of that grape), and a more expected love of French wines. His vinous work at Wild Horse Winery is exceptional, so I’d imagine his home brew beer must be delicious. Lets find out more about Clay now…


Well here we go again, another scientist-turned-winemaker! My past life was as a neurochemist so I’m continually amazed to see that so many of my fellow nerds have chosen a life of vine instead of test tubing. Additionally, Hugh and I (as well as many of the winemakers I have interviewed) love a peaty Scotch. I’m sensing a nice, and frankly unexpected, pattern here.


Bernard Portet is a living legend in the world of wine, that much I already knew. He was born in Cognac and rasied in Bordeaux by a father who was a technical director at Château Lafite. Luckily for the United States, Bernard took his vinous blood, talents, and passion from France to California and established Clos Du Val in the Stags Leap district of Napa Valley in 1971. Many would say that Bernard has had a signficant and lasting effect on both the wine styles and culture of Napa Valley.


I first made contact with Jason and his business partner Chris Woodrum in August 2010 via a message Chris sent me wanting to know if I desired to try their wine. I took them up on the offer, and was very glad I did. To-date, I have truly enjoyed every Evidence wine I’ve tasted. Additionally, everyone I have introduced the wines to has the same reaction, which is always something akin to, “absolutely excellent,” and, “holy cow what a great price for this wine!” 


Pink, sparkly and passionate about wine. Meet the two ladies behind the Napa Valley winery, Pink Girl Wines. With expansion planned for the next wine season, Tina and Martina’s wines score big for bachelorette parties and rosé lovers. Read their interview with WineTable’s Keith Hoffman.


Nadine Worley is an ex-nurse born in Australia, with wine schooling in Adelaide and hands-on training in Italy, Australia, and Oregon. She now crafts wines for Mud House Wines in New Zealand. Find out about her background, the toughest moment of winemaking and her opinion on decanting.


Gary Farrell Winery has legendary status. They have been producing award wining pinot noir and chardonnay for decades. In May 2012, they hired Theresa Heredia to take over their winemaking. With an aversion toward pincher bugs, a geek factor for chemistry research, a passion for "just about anything with cayenne" and fried pickles, and of course an unabashed love of Chardonnay, this is one winemaker you're sure to enjoy meeting.


Crafting wine is an individual art. Techniques, timing and taste differ from vineyard to vineyard. That's why we're getting to know the individuals behind the wines we love. The winemaker's own blend of style, personality and experience are part of what makes wine special, and today's featured winemaker is no exception. Meet Franciscan Estate and Mount Veeder winemaker Janet Myers. What's she like? Let's start with anthropology, opening Christmas presents, London, bright limes, and Bordeaux with halibut.


What do surgical pathology, vaporizing cheese stink, “bounce back,” pink umbrellas, the hiss of CO2, and brigades of charitable giving all have in common? Two words: Kerith Overstreet. WineTable gets the inside scoop on Bruliam Wines' winemaker...you don't want to miss it.


Cynthia Cosco went from cop to artisan wine crafter, not a typical journey by any stretch. Her wines are delicious and straight to the point. Get to know the winemaker behind Passaggio Wines. From champagne and potato chips to bottleshock and roller coasters, you'll discover interesting insights about Cynthia to share next time you enjoy a Passaggio with friends.


In our ongoing series of 21 Questions with winemakers, we get answers to questions you may have always wondered...some you might never have thought of. Today, Natalie West, winemaker at Foppiano Vineyards tells us about herself, her thoughts on wine and reveals some of her favorite moments during winemaking. Share your thoughts in the comments section: how does getting to know a bit about a winemaker change or impact the way you think about the wine?


Winemakers, not just brands and specific wineries, should be a much bigger focus for fine wine consumers. It is the net sum of a multitude of small and big decisions they make (during a wine’s journey from bud break to dinner party swirling) that can have far more influence on a final wine than the climatic influences during a given growing season, the impact of local terroir, etc. Today, meet Chimney Rock Winemaker and General Manager Elizabeth Vianna.


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