Katarina's Blog

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What’s with oak corks?

Cork is a fantastic material. I love it. A natural bottle stopper from the bark of the cork oak. The cork comes from the bark of the tree which is harvested and then grows back again. Each tree can be harvested 12-15 times during its life which can be up to 200 years. Cork oak forests, today mostly in Portugal and Spain, are also a natural habitat for many species, some endangered like the Iberian Lynx. Before corks wine storage and transportation looked quite different. But cork also has its problems which the producers now has learned to mitigate.

Written by Katarina at West Wines

Veraison - A Time for Change

Time for change – time for veraison. This is the wonderful and dramatic stage when, in only 24-48 hours, the grapes change color, become soft and pliable and the sugar starts rising rapidly. It is happening right now in our vineyards.

Written by Katarina at West Wines

Spring at our Dry Creek Valley Winery

We have roses at the end of the vine rows next to our Tasting Room. It's a beautiful frame for our outdoor tasting patio. But did you know there's also a historical reason for planting them by the rows of grapes? It used to be a warning system for grape vine deceases. Now we have other methods, but roses and lavender can be used in many other ways and in cooking.

Written by Katarina at West Wines

Can you serve wine with your Easter eggs?

Well of course you can, but it will not taste that great. Not if we are talking about hard boiled eggs and especially not with red wine. Now that Easter is here I am reminded how hard it is to pair eggs with wine. Eggs have so much savory umami flavor and also contain a lot of sulfur which creates an almost metallic taste in your mouth when paired with wine. But there are some tricks to change the flavor experience that I would like to share.

Written by Katarina at West Wines

A Taste from French Oak Wine Barrels

Tasting wine straight from the barrel is an interesting exercise. As a winemaker you do it often to see how your wine is progressing. Once a year, in March, we participate in the Barrel Weekend arranged by Wine Road and it is really fun to engage in conversation about the wine and its journey in the barrel and in the bottle with our visitors. The discussion ranges from taste and various barrels impact as well as time, which is an essential ingredient when getting to those sought after flavors in a mature wine.

Written by Katarina at West Wines