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2009 Folie à Deux Napa Valley Chardonnay

Clear, vibrant yellow straw appearance. Green apple, tropical fruit, vanilla, hint of coconut on the nose. Citrus, pineapple, peach flavors. Good mid-palate and lingering acidity at finish. Restrained use of oak. Good balance. Pairing mine tonight with my seasonal favorite Dungeness crab. Try crab cakes, chicken or pasta with cream sauce. This is a very drinkable chardonnay for under $20 that will please many, not embarrass you, and will pair widely with a good variety of foods. Read the extended review on Simple Hedonisms.
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2006 Louis M. Martini Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

At first, you notice cherry raspberry aromas, with darker sweet fruit in the flavors—even caramelized fruit. Not much tannin apparent, when drinking the wine on its own, and an unmemorable finish. But with food, it becomes more balanced, less sweet: the wine in your glass just seems to disappear. Try it with something not too heavy, like pasta with tomato sauce. Recommended.
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2006 Faust Cabernet Sauvignon

A Napa biggie, a cousin of the pricier Quintessa. Nose of blackberry, eucalyptus, and earth. Rich feel on palate seemingly coming from myriad directions: dark currants, cocoa/chocolate, even some hints of pumpkin pie spice blend. The fruit, however, is a tad out of whack to the tannins and the wine is a bit “hot” (14.5% alc.) making it seem a bit unbalanced. A sinewy, semi-long finish that is slightly sweet. Nevertheless, a quite good wine, and a bargain when compared to many of its pricey Napa neighbors. Try with grilled hanger steak. Highly recommended.
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2008 Shafer Chardonnay Red Shoulder Ranch

This wine exhibits a ripe melon & pineapple core with butterscotch, butter & heavy cream, baking spice & vanilla extract. Full body, medium acid, medium length in this pleasant, but typical, upscale California Chardonnay. Guests at the Palate Press Grand Tasting gave this an average score of 3.2 out of 5 stars. Drink with lobster and corn chowder.
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2007 Opus One

The 2007 Opus One is clearly aimed at the Bordeaux aficionado, offering a balance of dark fruits with spice and floral flavors, all with a balance of acid and tannins that suggest long cellar life.
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2007 Sequoia Grove Cabernet Sauvignon

A vibrant Cabernet Sauvignon still has traces of tannin, but that's phasing out as raspberry takes over the flavor profile. Dark red color, touches of black cherry and a hint of leather in the aroma. Six Napa Valley appellations provide grapes, with Cab (82%) and Merlot (12%) heading the blend from an elegant little winery, surrounded by one of the last extant stands of Napa redwood.
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Forget Napa, Head for Sonoma

Napa Valley is noted for its abundance of wineries, wine tastings, warm/hot climate (even in winter), lavish restaurants, and compact access to literally dozens of wineries—currently numbered at over 700. But, with notoriety also comes popularity. Let’s face it—in the summer and fall, Napa is a zoo of tourists and locals. The two main thoroughfares, St. Helena Highway (Route 29) and the Silverado Highway, are usually jammed with vehicles, as are the tasting rooms.