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WineSpeed | Oak Farm Vineyards

Weekly insights from veteran wine writer Karen MacNeil.

BY Karen Macneil | Life | Apr 9, 2018

OAK FARM VINEYARDS | Albariño 2017

(Lodi, CA) $25

Sometimes a grape resists exportation. (Has nebbiolo ever made great wine outside of Piedmont, or gewürztraminer outside of Alsace?) Until tasting this Oak Farm, I would have said that albariño too was in a monogamous relationship with its ancestral home (northwestern Spain). But this exciting albariño changed my mind. It’s richly flavored but sprightly and light. The refreshing lime notes are spiked with just a touch of white pepper. Minerals whirl around. All in all, it’s a fantastic white, and a sign of the deliciousness albariño can achieve in California. (12.9% abv)

 91 points KM 

Available at Wine.com 

The entire cucina (cooking repertoire) of Tuscany is said to revolve around this one essential food. What is it?

A.    Polenta

B.    Tomatoes

C.    Balsamic Vinegar

D.    Beans 

Scroll down for the answer!

Chenin Blanc in 3 Easy Facts

One: The most famous, vibrant chenin blancs of the world come from the Loire Valley of France. The Loire Valley is also the ancestral home of this grape, which arose as a natural cross of savagnin and an unknown parent.
Two: The best chenin blancs are stunningly complex wines with shimmering acidity and flavors of apples and honey. Chenin blancs are made in a variety of degrees of sweetness, from bone-dry to fully sweet.
Three: Chenin blanc was the most widely planted white grape in California before chardonnay took its place in the 1970s.

“I wouldn’t have minded school if they taught you important things like how to have good sex and what brand of wine is best, but for some reason, they were hell bent on teaching me algebra.”

—Ben Mitchell, author, Without One Plea

D.  Tuscan cooking is some of the humblest in Italy—it’s poor people’s cuisine. The entire cucina of Tuscany is said to revolve around beans; they are commonplace in scores of regional recipes. When other Italians want to be derogatory, they call the Tuscans by their age-old nickname: mangiafagioli, “bean eaters.”

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