California, what a royal pain in the you know what … imagine if you will a large ballroom at the Royal York hotel in downtown Toronto. Now, put over 120 wineries in there and have them pour over 450 wines – now try to get through all of that in two-and-a-half hours. What a pain in the …
Try as I might, last year I never even came close. This year I had a plan – go through the tasting book beforehand, pick out the wines of interest, and limit it to about 1 wine per winery … this averaged out because at some wineries there was nothing and at others there was 2 or 3. And oh yeah, chuck the usual stuff like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay – ditch the Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc – forget the Pinot Noir as well … go for interesting names or bizarre grapes or blends, and definitely check out the Zinfandels. This left me with a total of 52 wines on my list to taste – very doable, or so I thought … I never got past the halfway point in the room. What a pain in the … You’d need two full days to even make a real dent in the place – they should, by all rights, break it up regionally or something. But anyway, I tried my best ladies and gentlemen, I sacrificed my tongue, my nose and my sobriety to bring you my list of interesting California wines from this year’s California Wine Fair. Some that I tasted were never on my original list and some on the list I never got a chance to taste – too many wines, not enough time – who’da thunk it.
* Indicates my top three wines in the category. The others also come recommended ... (Read more)
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