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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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Wednesday
Nov172010

Wine Wednesday: Turkey on the Brain

I have a love/hate relationship with Thanksgiving. I love the concept--an entire day devoted to gratitude, friends and family --and I love the food...mostly. You see, for me the problem with Thanksgiving is that there's too much food. Don't get me wrong, I love a big family feast, but the modern Thanksgiving meal often seems a little disjointed, a bunch of random dishes made to satisfy one person or another, all piled on a plate, but not always complementary. That makes finding the right Thanksgiving wine as hard as proving what the Pilgrims actually ate. Too bad America's best known historic oenophile Thomas Jefferson never weighed in on the subject.

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