Musings on Wine and Spirits by Louis Marmon

As seen in:
Washington Post, Gazette Newspapers, DC Examiner, The Wine Report
Washington Jewish Week, LA Times, Jewish Exponent, Capitol File Magazine and in other cities in the US and Canada

Latest Article

Kosher or Not Kosher? Well, Yes, No And Maybe

May 25, 2011

Covenant Lavan

A review of the Covenant Lavan 2008 and the .

The Covenant Lavan 2008 ($38) has many of the same characteristics as other California chardonnays, but they are presented with a degree of restraint more often associated with white Burgundies. From grapes grown at the legendary Bacigalupi vineyard, in Sonoma’s Russian River Valley, the Lavan (which means “white” in Hebrew) is a full-bodied, silky-smooth, elegant effort with lovely peach, pear and toasty aromas that meld into layers of melon, lemon, fig and honeysuckle. The well-balanced, lengthy finish displays hints of minerals, nuts and a bit of licorice. It is easily one of the world’s best kosher chardonnays, and so an excellent choice for year-round enjoyment, as well as a warm-weather kiddush.

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Shake Up Your Kiddush with Offerings from Spain, Ireland

May 18, 2011

Knappoque Castle single Malt

A review of the Ramon Cordova Rioja 2009 and the 1995 Knappogue Castle Single Malt Irish Whiskey.

It’s no surprise that high-quality kosher wines are being made around the world. While those from Israel and the U.S. are the best known, equally fine kosher wines are produced in countries as diverse as France, Italy, New Zealand, Australia, Chile and South Africa. A great value is the Ramon Cordova Rioja 2009 ($16) that is made from 100 percent old-vine Tempranillo grapes grown around the Spanish town of Haro, La Rioja.

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Wine To Try: California Chardonnay

May 15, 2011

Santa Barbara Chardonnay

A review of the Santa Barbara Collection Chardonnay 2009.

Chardonnay is quintessential California. It can be Hollywood—buttery as movie popcorn and steeped in enough oak to approximate woody overtones. It can reflect innovation as sleek as Silicon Valley, with bright, fresh balance using minimal oak that reveals the varietal’s underlying character and versatility.

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Mamma Mia! That’s Good Wine

May 11, 2011

Domaine du Castel grand Vin

A review of the Domaine du Castel Grand Vin 2007 and a summer martini recipe.

One of the world’s best kosher wines is Domaine du Castel Grand Vin 2007 ($59) – an elegant blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, petit verdot, cabernet franc and malbec. It’s full-bodied with gorgeous blueberry, cedar and chocolate aromas leading into layers of beautifully integrated dark plums, blackberries, currants and anise, with hints of olives and oranges in the satisfyingly lengthy finish.

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The Booze Timeline: From Second Temple to Mint Julep

May 4, 2011

Ella Valley EverRed

A review of the Ella Valley EverRed 2007 and the Mint Julep.

There are few wineries with a longer pedigree than the Ella Valley Vineyards. When Danny Valero, the winery’s general manager, began preparing the area for modern grape cultivation, a site of ancient winemaking dating from the Second Temple period was discovered. According to the biblical account, the Ella Valley is also where David fought Goliath. For Valero, however, the location was not just about history or the Bible.

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