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So why is the 2012 Ladera Cabernet—made from almost entirely from Howell Mountain fruit, from an incredible vintage—sitting pretty at $34.99? I honestly can't tell you. Maybe it's because no one knows how good the Ladera holdings in Howell Mountain are. Or maybe it's the pride that winemaker Jade Barrett takes in making a serious wine for a reasonable price. Or maybe it's because Ladera is an overlooked gem in a sea of Napa alternatives. For whatever the reason, I'm not going to complain. We tasted the 2012 vintage at our staff training yesterday and I was just floored by the quality of this wine. Dark, fleshy fruit cloaked in fine tannins, bits of earth, and in total balance, with enough gusto to go the long haul in your cellar. It's a whole lotta wine for $34.99, and it's made primarily from Howell Mountain grapes, harvested during a great vintage. 

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« Final Day of Alimentaria | Main | Day 3 at Alimentaria! »
Thursday
Mar092006

Alimentaria Day 4

Cross your fingers, folks! Oh heck, cross your toes, too! We may get the wine of Marques de Murrieta back in the store. They broke up with their last importer and have been out of the West Coast market for almost a year now. Boy do I miss their products. I tried all of their new releases, and they were awesome. As soon as we work out the issues, I will let everybody know! D.O. overload…Spain has somewhere around 65 Denominacion de Origen defined regions. Ucles, one of their newest, was making their debut at Alimentaria. It was the first time that I have tried wines from Ucles, which is an area in Southern Spain. More big fat reds…we’ll see how it goes. Cultural note of the day: while in the States 2 out of 3 ain’t bad, apparently in Spain, it’s 4 out of 5. Well, at least according to one rather flirtatious taxi driver. Saludos! -Anne Pickett

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