Oh Sherry Baby

Sherry is an adult beverage that is a victim of the past. The word “sherry” conjures up images of elderly ladies sitting in a living room (doilies on the tables!) drinking a sweet cream sherry. Harvey’s Bristol Cream anyone? What people do not know about sherry is that it is made in a wide variety of styles. Sweet and dessert wines are less popular these days, which has made sherry naturally fall out of style. However, today we will talk about two DRY styles of sherry that may be more up your alley.

Grenache Day: What’s in Your Glass?

Disclaimer: These wines were received as samples for review Did you know that today is Miniature Golf Day, National Chai Day, World Peace Day, AND International Grenache Day? I didn't think so. Just about every day of the year has some sort of "holiday" attached to...

Rocket Science & Wine at Vidon Vineyard

At Vidon Vineyard, there is a perceivable push/pull between science and romance. According to David Bellows, the Vidon winemaker with a PhD in molecular biology, the artistic side is overrated. But I’m going to have to disagree with him. Even here, at a science-filled...

August: Washington Wine Month

August is Washington Wine Month, which is quite apropos as over 300 wine bloggers will be heading to Walla Walla in 8 weeks for the Wine Bloggers Conference! Disclaimer: I know NOTHING about it as I don’t have much tasting experience with Washington wine. Also, it was not a big topic in my WSET studies. Let’s face it, the Brits (who run the WSET program) are not too interested in the nuances of a Washington Merlot. With that being said, it’s exciting to visit a wine country and have no preconceived notions. Let’s learn some of the basics of Washington wine on our journey together.

Beneath the Surface at Hertelendy Vineyards

Beneath the Surface at Hertelendy Vineyards

Ralph Hertelendy was our host at the LA Wine Writers luncheon in April at Cafe del Rey in the Marina. Ralph is tall, dark, handsome, and he comes bearing his big, bold, gutsy Napa wines. Ok……is this one of those “all that glitters isn’t gold” moments? We are talking Napa, you know. And in Napa, sometimes the shiny exterior (i.e. the chateau on the hill or the #boldAF bottle of wine) is not all it’s cracked up to be. Is there more than meets the eye at Hertelendy?

The Wines of Custoza, Italy

In March I attended the Tre Bicchieri tasting event in Los Angeles put on by Gambero Rosso. Gambero Rosso is a multimedia brand in the Italian food and wine world that includes: food guides, wine guides, books, a TV channel, a learning academy, and events around the...

Kenwood Vineyards: Home in Sonoma County

Recently I had the opportunity to taste through samples of Kenwood Vineyards’ latest releases. Kenwood puts out 500,000 cases annually. As you may know, I don’t tend to steer towards larger producers, but I have started making some exceptions. For one, I like to see...

Chateau Montelena: A Review of Two Wines

Chateau Montelena in Napa Valley is most famous for winning the white wine category of the Judgement of Paris tasting in 1976. The Judgment of Paris was a blind tasting organized by Steven Spurrier, a British wine merchant, in which classic French wines from Bordeaux...

Inner Mendo Odyssey

Last fall I attended the annual Wine Bloggers Conference in Santa Rosa, CA. The area had just been hit hard with the wildfires only a month earlier, but the resiliency of the community was apparent, as they welcomed us with open arms and leaned on us to help spread...

Grenache: The Next Great Grape

Grenache: The Next Great Grape

We’re going to Napa y’all! Actually, I already went and will be telling you all about it! Read my contest-winning blog post HERE. In April I had the pleasure of attending one of the most well-organized and informative wine events. They had a great mix of producers, winemakers, sales reps, retailers, and sommeliers, which is probably what made it so dynamic. I attend a lot of seminars, masterclasses, and walk-around tastings and I am usually left a bit underwhelmed.

London, Here I Come!

I just received the results from your January 9, 2018 WSET Diploma Unit 3 exam. Congratulations, you passed the exam. If you can't already guess by the title of this post, I passed the final exam I needed in order to secure the WSET Diploma sommelier certification! I...

Vintastic Voyage: Napa (and a little Sonoma)

Confession: Napa Valley has never been my “go to” California wine region to visit. The wines are quite pricey and there can be an air of pretension at some of the larger tasting rooms. However, my experiences in Napa over the last year have helped me see that there is a whole lot more to Napa than egos and flashiness.

Don’t Put the Kibosh on Grenache

Being that I am a certified sommelier, and write a wine blog…..friends and family ask me a lot of questions about wine. What’s your favorite wine? Answer: anything sparkling Where can I get good, cheap wine? Answer: at your local wine shop! What’s the most expensive...


It’s no secret that I am a big fan of Lodi wines, as I have written multiple blog posts about the region (see HERE). I used to be a naysayer, but I have since visited Lodi multiple times and tasted many wines, not just the crap that’s sold at the grocery stores. What people might not know about Lodi is that they are one of the leaders in regards to sustainable winegrowing.

Vintastic Voyage: Lodi

I’ve had the privilege to visit Lodi multiple times over the last couple of years. For one, I live in California, so visiting any California wine country is quite convenient and only a car ride away. And secondly, I gained an in-depth appreciation for Lodi after attending the 2016 Wine Bloggers Conference where we learned about multi-generational family producers, the history of the local old vines, and met many incredible people who welcomed us with open arms and who were proud of Lodi and happy to show it off to us!

Prosecco: Not Just for Mimosas

When I was in college in my 20s, day drinking wasn’t what it is now. This was before Sunday Brunch became a “thing” and before Vegas started doing “day parties”. In my 20s, it was a simpler time. Binge drinking only occurred at night (much easier to manage!). Weekend...

WSET Diploma: Unit 3 Tasting Exam……take 2!

Last week I took the WSET Diploma Unit 3 tasting exam for the second time. If you recall I took both the tasting and the theory exams in June (read more HERE). I felt pretty good about the tasting (after all, that’s the easier portion of the exam and has a higher pass rate) and was nervous about the theory.

Vintastic Voyage: Willamette Valley

As you may know, I am an event producer by trade and produce several large events throughout the year. One of my traditions is “getting out of dodge” after each big event, and Halloweenie last year was no exception. Yes, you heard me correctly, Halloweenie....

#WineStudio: Perseverance is the Name of the Game with Ordaz Family Wines

Many of us can relate to being an underdog at some time in our life. In studying for the WSET Diploma, I find myself to be an underdog. I don’t work in the wine and spirits business, so I don’t get to talk about wine all day, nor do I have access to the myriad of bottles that someone in the industry has access to. I’ve had to learn about wine mostly through reading (books, the Internet, blogs, etc). I then supplement book learning with tasting as many wines as I can get my hands on. But those in the biz have a distinct advantage, as they live and breathe wine all day. I, on the other hand, spend my days producing events in the LGBT non-profit world. A far cry from the wine industry!

From Santa Rosa, With Love

Last year my first blog post after returning from the Wine Bloggers Conference in Lodi was entitled“From Lodi, With Love”. This year I can’t think of a more fitting title for my first post since returning from this year’s Wine Blogger’s Conference (WBC) in Santa Rosa.

One Year Later

A year ago today, I woke up in complete disbelief. How did we get here? How did I get here? Our country elected a man who appeared to have a severe lack of morality, intelligence, humility, decency. The list goes on and on. This is not a political blog. This is a wine...

Exam Results Are Here!

After 12 LONG weeks waiting for my test results, they are here! Let's recap. In June of 2015 I embarked on a 2-year adventure known as the WSET Diploma program. This program consisted of 20 in-person classes, 6 exams, and 1 research paper on topics including the wine...

Event Recap: Tre Bicchieri

Back in February I had the opportunity to attend the Tre Bicchieri tasting put on by Gambero Rosso at the Barkar Hangar in Santa Monica. Gambero Rosso is a multimedia brand in the Italian food and wine world that includes: food guides, wine guides, books, a TV...

The Mystery of Blind Tasting

As a wine student, the most frequent question I am asked is: how do you blind taste? While I enjoy talking about blind tasting, I don't really enjoy doing it! Why? Because it's fucking hard. It's interesting, people are fascinated by blind tasting wines.  A typical...

Holy Exam Batman!

On mornings like today, I find myself waking up, having a Nespresso, checking the news (translation: scrolling through Facebook), and cuddling with the kids (translation: Zoe, my dog and Ziggy, my cat). Next up, I go to the gym and work my tail off, then put in a full...

It’s Not You, It’s Me

Hello readers!  It has been a whopping 5 months since I have blogged, and what a 5 months it has been!  When I started this blog my goals were twofold, to one, document and follow my WSET Diploma journey, and two, to help people become more comfortable with and to...

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