Author Archive | Laura Ness

Outlook for Monterey Wines and 12 to Try Now

a6365ebe-c398-4058-a6de-794cae9ea9ebFebruary 14, 2017 – Yes, we have a few more weeks of winter ahead, but when you live in the Monterey Bay are, you’re surrounded by an endless season of things that bloom. And you’re surrounded by wine—that just keeps getting better. 

Having the opportunity to taste a variety of the latest wine releases from the local vintners at a trade tasting is always a treat. It’s made all the more intriguing when you can actually talk to the winemakers about what they’re doing, what they’re excited about and what they’re planning for the future.

For example, it was awesome to see the wines from Ian and Heather Brand taking a new kind of shape, with the rollout of the I. Brand & Family label that will include exciting new things like … Read More

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A Fork in the Road

Along with Monterey County’s recognition
as a Top 10 worldwide wine destination,
new dining and lodging options are
coming to the Santa Lucia Highlands

We may finally be reaching a fork in the road: River Road, that is. Home to 14 wineries and tasting rooms, and two of Monterey County’s American Viticultural Areas (Santa Lucia Highlands and Arroyo Seco), it’s among the best-loved “wine trails” in Monterey wine country. Yet, unlike the county’s Carmel Valley AVA, dining and lodging of the caliber of the wines have been few. That’s slowly changing, and just in time, given the recent naming of Monterey County as a Top 10 wine country destination by Wine Enthusiast magazine (February 2013). The county was one of just three regions in the United States that made the … Read More

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Peter Figge To Open Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Room

peter-figge-300x300January 24, 2017 – It has been a busy year for Peter Figge—expanding his custom crush business, making his own 2,400 cases of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and also making wine for Carmel Valley Ranch’s own brand called “Swing.” He installed their estate vineyard, all planted to Pinot Noir, in 2010.

He’s had a very unique arrangement in Carmel for several years at the Winfield Art Gallery on Dolores and 7th, where he’s been pouring Figge Cellars wines for a few years, but he’s had a hankering for Carmel Valley for awhile. When he heard Joyce was moving to expanded new digs in the Village, he got to thinking it might seriously be time to make a move. Figge and his wife, Amy, lived on Laureles Grade in Carmel Valley … Read More

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Dan Karlsen Launches 1000 Bottle Project

7905e13a-3f7d-42b1-8506-d1beaf7f2d8bDecember  20, 2016 – When you’re Dan Karlsen—a veritable legend in the wine industry, with stints at Domaine Carneros, Dehlinger, Chalone and Talbott Vineyards in your repertoire—what do you do for a post-Talbott act? Make more wine, of course, but perhaps, make less, also.

With just one thousand bottles —that’s just 83 cases—planned per offering, the next chapter in the life of Dan is being written with the assistance of his longtime business colleague Matt Viotto. Called the 1000 Bottle Project, this latest installment in a stellar career teams Karlsen with Viotto, himself a 30-year wine industry veteran, whose resume includes buying, distributor management and sales and marketing for Henry Wine Group, Chalone, Diageo and Talbott Vineyards.

The two have known each other for over 20 years, beginning at Chalone, … Read More

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Experience The Wine Country of Carmel Valley

8f8da7d5-7ac9-4958-b598-abd76a6269e9The Central Coast of California is blessed with the perfect combination of climate and geography to produce some of the finest wines in the world. Each corner of this paradise has its own charm, but none quite so captivating as that of Carmel Valley, a bohemian enclave that sprang up as a counter to the more sophisticated and highbrow culture of Carmel. Here, far from fog’s reach, is a land of warm sunshine and gentle breezes, dotted with farms, orchards, pastures and ranches, and crowned by jewel-like vineyards.

Tucked between the drama of majestic mountains and the lush Sycamore and maple-lined Carmel River, there is nothing quite as idyllic as a day spent exploring the walkable Village, replete with one-of-a-kind shops, art collectives, a motorcycle museum, restaurants and more than twenty … Read More

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