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Nothing like sipping wines and walking through the sf flower and garden show at the San Mateo event center. Come and experience it for yourself.



Wine Events to Talk About and Attend (March 13, 2015)

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Last weekend hundreds of wine lovers attended Fenestra Winery’s Chocolate and Cabernet event. Fenestra Winery is located in the Livermore Valley, which is an easy 45 minute drive from most Bay Area locations. fenestra picnic2015Fenestra winery was founded in 1976, and has helped lead the renaissance of the boutique winery explosion in this nearby wine region. In fact when Fenestra was established,  there were only five Livermore Valley wineries and now some 39 years later there are over fifty wineries. Yes, the Livermore Valley has again become how it was once known during the turn of the century: a premier wine country destination. 

Many of the attendees spent the entire afternoon sipping and tasting over 20 different wine offerings while sampling various small savory and sweet chocolate dishes. If you have not visited the Livermore Valley, you may want to plan a weekend or two to rediscover California’s original wine country. Make sure to visit Fenestra Winery when you do and if you like to picnic then Fenestra winery offers a relaxed and beautiful family-friendly environment. 

This Sunday “get your chocolate on” at the SF Chocolate Salon at Fort Mason Pavilion. chocolatesalonThe event is from 10 am to 6 pm and featuresyou guessed it! chocolate, and an assortment of fine wines. So give yourselves a treat by spending a part of your Sunday day off at the Ninth Annual San Francisco Chocolate Salon. 

Need a pick me up after a long day of work this coming Monday? Well make plans to attend the amazing IPOB (In Search of Balance) wine event to be held at the beautiful Metreon Complex in San Francisco. Thirty-three amazing wineries and delicious small bites from some of the best SF restaurants will be the stars of the show. SignatureWines.com has a limited amount of specially priced tickets for you. First come first serve, Go here to get these tickets while they last:IPOB Red Fill-IPOB-2 png

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Wine Events to Talk About (February 27, 2015)

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Last Friday night 2/20/2015 more than fifty-plus marquee wineries assembled and showcased well over 100 Petite Sirah wines in Alameda, California at the Rockwall winery. This well-attended event celebrated the deep-colored wine known for its bold round full-bodied structure and relatively high tannin levels that allow Petite Sirah to age so very well. DSC 1318 

A well-balanced Petite Sirah exhibits deep blackberry, blueberry, and plum-like fruit flavors as well as spice and licorice notes. This is a varietal that pairs extremely well with big hardy dishes such as beef, pork and other big game as well as braised and grilled meats. The evening was very well attended and all the laughter and happiness made the wine and food offerings that much more memorable. For information on upcoming events featuring Petite Sirah check back here, or visit:   http://www.psiloveyou.org.

Next weekend, take a Saturday or Sunday afternoon to enjoy the hospitality of Fenestra Winery’s Chocolate and Cabernet event. Fenestra winery is one of the very best places to enjoy a picnic with your friends and family. fenestra tasting room with peopleThis event features savory and sweet chocolate dishes paired with Fenestra’s high quality wines. Recipes for various dishes will be offered and you can stock up on their wines for your future memorable meals. Save $5.00 dollars off the cost of admission by getting your tickets in advance at: 

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/limited-quantity-of-specially-priced-tickets-to-fenestra-winerys-chocolate-and-cabernet-weekend-tickets-15849261568?ref=ecal  

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Wine Medals, Ratings and Reviews and How..

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Ratings, wine competition medals, and wine reviews can be important reference points that can influence people to select and buy one wine over another. If these ratings, award medals and reviews are unbiased and fair, these “persuaders” can serve as a good indicators of what the wine lover might experience when drinking the wine that was rated and reviewed.WIne-Rating-250X194 Additionally, These “reference points” also help establish the economic value of the selected vintage.  

But all of this begs a question: Are current ways of reviewing, rating and awarding medals an absolutely unbiased and fair way of doing what they are supposed to do? Or are they simply a manifestation of the personal taste and subjective opinions of those who care enough to write up their reviews? Are the medals assigned to a wine by esteemed wine-tasting judges and experts awarded according to consistent standards or can it be said that they are awarded rather randomly?

I think it is important for me to acknowledge that as far as I am concerned, wines fall into two main categories: First, there are the wines that I want to enjoy. The wine does not have to be a medal winner, it just has to please my palate and pair well with the particular dish I am eating. Second, there are wines that I might regard as an investment: Wines that I think will appreciate in economic value, or wines with such hefty price tags that I have to wonder how they will appeal to my palate. Will they really offer exceptional aroma, superior taste, greater pleasure?which wine should i choose In an earlier article I wrote about Penfolds' $108,000 offering:  http://www.signaturewines.com/blogger/sir-may-i-have-a-drop-of-wine-maybe-two-possibly-three-please. What signatures did this wine possess that rendered it worthy of such an exalted price? 

I have a great many friends and acquaintances whose knowledge and experience far exceeds my own and who regularly serve as wine judges and wine critics. So I’d like to ask them this question: How do ratings, wine competition medals and wine reviews impact the value of wine? Can these correlations be standardized or explained empirically? 

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Wine Events to Talk About (February 20, 2015)

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sf winter weatherOne of the many wonderful things about living here in Northern California, besides the spectacular winter weather, is an abundance of world-class wine and food events. This past Valentine’s Day weekend featured the Masters and Makers Wine event at a beautiful luxury resort: the Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa Valley.  The epicurean affair offered delights of healthy fresh farm-to-fork meals, prepared by experts and paired with the sumptuous fine wines for which Napa and Sonoma wineries are renowned. These offerings were further enhanced by the presence of interesting devotees with whom this weekend was shared. So be sure to mark your calendars for next year’s Masters and Makers Wine event because it is bound to gain popularity and prestige over the coming years.top-logo meritage

Across the bay, On Valentine’s Day, the International San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition celebrated the many spectacular vintages and wineries found throughout Northern California, national wine regions and other nations. Of special mention was a small winery named Pezzi King that shared the coveted red wine Sweepstakes Wine Award with their 2012 Estate Zinfandel, Dry Creek Valley, Row 14 Reserve, priced at $50.00. The award was shared with Sonoma-Cutrer’s 2012 Pinot Noir, Founders Reserve, Russian River Valley at $65.00. The wine region of the Livermore Valley continues to shine with Wente Vineyards leading the way. Wente Vineyards took a Best of Class award for their 2013 Livermore Valley Morning Fog Chardonnay. This wine exemplifies the harmonious balance of fruit, minerality, acid, terroir and time that testifies to the fine wine making artistry of Karl Wente. Enjoy this lovely wine for $15.00 or less. For a complete list of wine awards go to: sf wine crowd-2015-400x300http://winejudging.com/2015/01/09/announcing-the-2015-san-francisco-chronicle-wine-competition-sweepstake-winners/  

This Thursday, February 19, 2015, the 63rd annual Pacific Orchid Exposition Gala Benefit at Fort Mason Center’s Festival Pavilion in San Francisco benefited one of the Bay Area's most well known horticultural institutions: the U.C Botanical Garden at Berkeley. The Gala Benefit gave attendees the first chance to browse and purchase gorgeous orchids before the show opened to the general public. In addition, delicious hors d’oeuvres were served along with tastings from California’s premier wineries. The Pacific Orchid show continues throughout this weekend. For more information, go here: orchid 2http://www.eventbrite.com/e/2015-pacific-orchid-exposition-the-thrill-of-discovery-thur-219-630-10-pm-fri-220-sun-222-10-5-pm-tickets-12481363093?ref=ebtn

Looking forward to this weekend, you might attend the Ninth Annual Dark and Delicious Petite Syrah wine event celebrates this varietal. This event features 52 renowned California wineries who will showcase their Petite Syrah wines. ps i love you Nine (9) different and delicious cuisines from local restaurants and celebrity chefs will be served to the lucky attendees. The event will be held at Rock Wall Winery in Alameda, California. Visit SignatureWines.com ’s special events calendar for a limited number of specially priced tickets for this event as well as other upcoming wine events. It is wise to act quickly if you want to save money and attend these food and wine events. Go here for more information: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/9th-annual-dark-and-delicious-wine-event-tickets-15683312209?ref=ecal . Check back frequently at SignatureWines.com because we continue to add wonderful wine events every week. 

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Understanding Wine Ratings Part 2

OD-AV904 WINE P G 20130301123200At its best, the art and science of wine blend together and become a compound inseparable from each other, and thus, like art, wine at times often transcends our ability to measure its quality empirically. Sometime ago I wrote an article called “The rating of wine … where does one begin?” http://www.signaturewines.com/blogger/the-rating-of-wine-where-does-one-begin

This article, now almost two years old, has been visited over 178,000 times. It seems clear to me that the topic of wine ratings, and understanding the power and influence they possess, underscores many of our biases, desires and behaviors when it comes to selecting, purchasing, collecting, investing and even choosing which wine to imbibe.   

In my previous article I describe the 20 point scale that intends to offer an empirical process for applying a measurement scale to the qualities of wine. I also promised to visit and write about the 100 point scale utilized and made popular by wine critic Robert Parker Jr. My intention here is to briefly discuss the 100 point wine scale with the goal of expanding upon my opinions rather than presenting some kind of thesis on this matter.wine-ratings-good-bad Needless to say, wine ratings are important and do have measurable effects on the economics of a wine. wine-ratings1

In the late 1970’s a relatively unknown attorney in Maryland fell in love and traveled to Alsace, France to pursue his future wife. In the late 1970’s, Mr. Parker began chronicling his wine tasting musings and critiques and conceived of producing a resource for wine enthusiasts, which is now called erobertparker.com (formerly known as The Wine Advocate). Mr. Parker along with his friend Victor Morgenroth popularized a 100 point rating system.

This rating system gained rapid popularity and clout because it parroted the academic scales (A, B, C etc.) that practically everyone can readily identify with. Thus the application of a 100-point system promoted the natural belief that 90 points and higher meant quality. To me it means “A” grade. And who doesn’t want to enjoy an A grade wine?

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