Tag Archives: wine

People of PlumpJack: 20 Questions with Jason Schulz

From the daily management of the wine list to wine trainings and seminars, the responsibilities of PlumpJack Cafe’s Wine Director, Jason Schulz, are endless. With ski season just around the corner, we sat down with Schulz, at PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn, and played 20 questions.
Jason Schulz_Food and Beverage Manager_PlumpJack Squaw Valley
What was your dream job growing up?
I wanted to be an Architect/Mechanical Engineer. I always loved designing multiple types of houses, something I still enjoy today.

Do you have a personal philosophy?
“Do as you will, but harm none.” It’s an ancient motto that we could all live by today.

Where is the best place you’ve traveled?
Ollantaytambo, Peru!

 

Favorite hotel/restaurant there?
Pescados Capitales in Lima, Peru has THE best grilled octopus I’ve ever had.
ticr_890_370First thing you do when you get up in the morning?
Brew a fresh pot of coffee. It’s an impressive habit that makes me human again.

When not working, what do you love to do?
Ski, Hike, Golf, Kayak, Camp

What’s your current favorite song?
Pets by Deadmou5 right now. Disco Science by Mirwais, as well.

How did you get involved with PlumpJack?
I wanted to work at PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn since I first visited Tahoe in 1997. When I moved up to Tahoe from San Francisco in 2011, I pursued it immediately. When the position became available, I interviewed… and here I am!

PlumpJack_Squaw Valley InnTell us about your journey as PlumpJack Cafe’s Wine Director.
I attained a wealth of knowledge through some of the best Wine Directors and Master Sommeliers (and aspiring M.S.s) in San Francisco, in addition to working for a wine distributor for a few years. Wine has always been a passion of mine. As the need for a Wine Director at the Cafe became apparent, it was a logical choice to have someone with a multitude of experiences from both the buying and the selling sides of the wine business to lead us and to continue the legacy of world class offerings that PlumpJack has become synonymous with.

How did you become interested in wine?
I’ve literally grown up in the restaurant industry where wine was always around. Since I was 13, working in an Italian restaurant that a family-friend owned, wine and food have always gone together for me. Plus, it’s just SO delicious.

What do you think is the most versatile wine?
German Riesling for whites and reds from Piedmont, Italy. Although, I could throw Northern Rhone reds in there, too.

What is the bestselling wine at PlumpJack Cafe?
Chardonnays and Pinot Noir’s still reign supreme, but it is my goal to match wines and foods together as best I can.

Favorite food and wine combination?
There are so many food and wine pairings that I enjoy! Foie Gras and Sauternes. Spicy Thai and German Auslese Riesling. Mushroom Risotto and Barbera d’Alba. I also just had some phenomenal Charcuterie with a new world Grenache that was outstanding.

Favorite food?
Any variety of noodles – Pho noodles, Thai noodles, Seafood Ramen… I love them all.

What do you believe is the most underrated wine?
Two styles of wine that I feel are grossly underrated are Madeira and Champagne, frankly bubbles in general. People think that Madeiras are strictly for dessert, but they’re laden with wonderful acids that pair with a wide variety of foods, especially meats and game dishes.

Any wines that are misunderstood?
Champagne and bubbly wines are typically held for festive occasions only, but their global diversity is unmatched, and they can pair with everything from cheese and charcuterie to heartier seafood dishes. Plus, who doesn’t love a glass of bubbly any time?

What advice would you give to someone getting started in the wine industry?
My advice would be to work in the environment and to engross themselves in the wine world. Work in a restaurant that has a Sommelier or Wine Director and learn from them. Attend wine seminars and tastings when possible. Visit wineries and meet the winemakers; one can learn an infinite amount from these passionate, talented people.

Who do you admire most in the wine and hospitality industry?
We genuinely care about the experience that our guests receive and want to make sure that, when they are in our restaurant, they have the best care possible. From a wine point of view, it’s the people and http://www.cialispharmaciefr24.com/achat-cialis-en-ligne/ effort that go into making wine. The winemakers are the epitome of devotion to their craft, but no one can do it alone. The workers in the fields that pick and sort the grapes are some of the hardest working people you’ll ever meet, and their passion for what they do is admirable.

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What has been the most significant project or accomplishment of your career?

Starting a beverage consulting business (Mountain Beverage Solutions) with my partner, Jake Spero, has been exceedingly significant and rewarding for me. Maintaining and managing a “Best of” Award of Excellence winning wine list that features some 725 selections at PlumpJack Cafe has been one of my greatest accomplishments. I was also Lead Captain at Saison Restaurant in San Francisco when we received our Michelin Star, which was awesome.

Bucket of wine and champagne If you were not working in the wine industry, what would you be doing?
If I was not in the wine industry, I’d probably be involved with the ski and golf industries on some level. I have been skiing since I was three, and I used to work in that world for a while and enjoyed it immensely. I’ve also been, at one point, a low, single digit handicap golfer and could see myself being a teaching pro.
PlumpJack Cafe is now taking reservations for the Holidays and it’s busy winter season. Don’t wait to book, especially if you have a larger group.

Deck the Halls with Wine & Spirits

Looking for the perfect wine for your holiday meal? Looking to stock your bar for your upcoming holiday party? Needing that perfect gift to send with no hassle? Our wineries in Napa, and our two wine and spirits retail locations will make this holiday season a breeze – purchase on-site or online.

cabs-w-wooden-box_1600x24001PlumpJack Collection of Wines
Purchase PlumpJack wines from Odette Estate, PlumpJack Winery, and CADE Estate Winery online, direct from the wineries, or at PlumpJack https://www.acheterviagrafr24.com/achat-viagra/ Wine & Spirits in San Francisco.

PlumpJack Wine & Spirits
Holiday gifting, corporate gifting, wine and spirits for holiday parties, and more. Purchase online at PlumpJackWines.com or purchase in store at our Fillmore or Noe Valley location. Delivery availabe in San Francisco and shipping to all states that accept alcohol deliveries.
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September Is California Wine Month

September marks season’s change. Crisp air, crunchy leaves and, best of all, California Wine Month. For the twelfth year, we celebrate California’s vintners and growers while sampling the finest wines and culinary pleasures. Napa Valley is recognized for its world-famous wines, producing 4% of California’s wine and serving as home to over 600 wineries. We will be dedicating the month to some of our favorite vineyards across the northern region of California.

Odette Winery

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Tasting Hours: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm,

daily

Address: 5998 Silverado Trail, Napa Valley CA

This is where a vineyard becomes a fairytale. Experience the magic of California at Odette Winery, classic wines have a modern twist – they’re bold, unique and flavorful. Begin the month on a magical journey, with sprawling mountains and luxurious vineyards, Odette Winery is one with the land. Sample Chardonnay, Petite Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon to understand the purest expression of Napa Valley wines.

PlumpJack Winery

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Tasting Hours: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, daily

Address: 620 Oakville Cross Rd, Oakville CA

Kick off your celebration of CA Wine Month with some cheap levitra bayer do of the finest quality Cabernet Sauvignon. The key to developing a quality Cabernet is perfecting the delicate balance between science and art. PlumpJack Winery’s head winemaker, Aaron Miller, prides the vineyard on its ability to produce a wine that “is strong enough to stand on its own, yet elegant enough to be enjoyed with food.” Placed in the heart and soul of wine country, our 42-acre estate in Oakville has been the site of wine production since the 1800s.

CADE

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Tasting Hours: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, daily

Address: 360 Howell Mountain South, Angwin CA

California is all about healthy living and here at CADE our motto is, “think green, drink green.” Healthier soil develops a more natural wine. Founded in 2005 and inspired by Shakespeare’s reference to wine cades, CADE crafts powerful yet approachable flavors. Our winery is the first LEED Gold Certified estate winery within Napa Valley. Our renowned architecture is not only aesthetically pleasing but ecologically sound. The panoramic views and intriguing architecture make us the ultimate destination during your time in Napa. Throughout your celebration of wine month, make sure to sample our estate’s 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon.

Honoring winemakers, tasters and creators, visit some of our favorite vineyards to get a taste – and sip – of all that Northern California has to offer. Hop in your car and explore, from lush viagra en madrid fields to sprawling mountaintops – every vineyard offers something unique.

Marina PlumpJack Wine & Spirits

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Store Hours: 11:00 am – 8:00 pm Monday-Saturday, 11:00am-6:00pm Sunday

Address: 3201 Fillmore Street, San Francisco CA

In 1992 PlumpJack’s first business, Marina PlumpJack Wine & Spirits, was officially opened providing San Francisco locals with an unique wine buying experience. Now twenty-four years later the shop continues to offer its patrons with a welcoming, educational and overall fun experience.

Stop in and discover a diverse collection of wines from around the world, carefully chosen by wine and spirits buyer, Paul Birman. The Fillmore location sells an enticing collection of very rare library wines for the discerning buyer and collector.

Noe Valley PlumpJack Wine & Spirits

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Store Hours: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm Monday-Saturday, 11:00am-6:00pm Sunday

Address: 4011 24th Street, San Francisco CA

Recognized as one of Noe Valley’s neighborhood institutions, locals are invited to Noe Valley PlumpJack Wine & Spirts for their wine, spirits and craft beer purchases.

General Manager and buyer Josh Thinnes has created a place of unique value and you’re sure to find something special in our shop. From vintage Ports and Madeiras dating back to the early 1900s to unusual small production bottles our team can help in selecting no matter the occasion.

Robert Parker Releases Wine Scores for 2015

We have some exciting news to share – the latest reviews from Robert Parker were published recently and we are humbled and honored by Mr. Parker’s reviews of our wines from all three wineries: Odette Estate, PlumpJack Winery, and CADE Estate. We were already so proud of Aaron Miller, Danielle Cyrot, and Jeff Owens and the wine they produced– and Robert Parker’s words simply reinforce that. Take a look at his reviews below!


2013 PlumpJack Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve
100 points
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Estate Oakville is 96% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Petit Verdot aged in 100% new French oak. This is perfection and an absolutely amazing effort. The wine is dense purple with sweet tannin, oodles of blueberry and blackberry fruit caressed by toasty new oak, and a full-bodied multi-dimensional mouthfeel — akin to a skyscraper in the mouth, but without any heaviness. The finish goes on for a good 45+ seconds, and the wine is super-pure and majestic. Truly a tour de force in Cabernet Sauvignon. Kudos to Plumpjack. Drink 2018-2040.

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2013 PlumpJack Cabernet Sauvignon Estate – 96 points
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Oakville is a blend of 97% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Petit Verdot aged in 80% new French oak. A beautiful, saturated purple color offers up blackberry, crème de cassis, licorice, charcoal and camphor. Full-bodied, yet still youthful and tight, it is bursting with terrific purity, texture and length. This big, classic Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon will hit its prime in 10-15 years, and last 30 or more years, based on how older vintages from this sector have aged. It’s a beauty.
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2013 PlumpJack Syrah – 91 points
PlumpJack’s delicious 2013 Syrah, which is 100% Syrah aged in 65% new French oak, tips the scales at 15% alcohol. It offers a dense purple color, a big, sweet kiss of blackberry and cassis liqueur, and touches of licorice and underbrush. It is full-bodied, opulent, and best drunk over the next decade or more.
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2013 PlumpJack Merlot – 90 points
A sexy, seductive wine, Plumpjack’s 2013 Merlot (92% Merlot and 8% Malbec aged in 65% new French oak) is soft and round, shows juicy, plum, mocha and black cherry fruit, is low in acidity, lush and a total hedonistic turn-on. Drink it over the next 5-7 years.
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 2013 CADE Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley – 92 points
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon (77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Malbec and 15% Petit Verdot, tipping the scales at 15.1% alcohol) has an inky purple color, a beautiful nose of blueberry and blackberry fruit, licorice and spring flowers. It is complex, rich, full-bodied, opulent, sexy and lush. This is a 2013 to drink now, as well as cellar for 10-15+ years.
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2013 CADE Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve – 97 points
Lastly, the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Howell Mountain (100% Cabernet Sauvignon with a screw cap) tips the scales at 15.9% alcohol. This is another stunningly proportioned, majestic mountain Cabernet, with mulberry, blueberry, blackberry and floral notes that is concentrated, full-bodied and multilayered. This skyscraper-like Cabernet Sauvignon is majestic, super-pure and a stunner. The alcohol is totally hidden, so unless you’re paranoid, simply see the number, and have an immediate loss of reason, this is a beautiful, full-throttle, full-bodied wine that is impeccably well-balanced, with great purity, depth and concentration. Drink it over the next 15-20 years.

2013 CADE Cabernet Sauvignon Estate
94 points
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain has an inky purple color to the rim and represents a blend of 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Merlot and 7% Petit Verdot. Gloriously pure notes of mulberry, graphite, blackberry and blueberry soar from the glass and cascade over the palate. The wine is full-bodied, there is nary a hard edge to be found in this opulent, velvety texture, pure, rich, stunning Cabernet Sauvignon. It finishes impressively, and the wine is capable of lasting 15-20 years, although it’s certainly accessible now.

 
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2013 Odette Estate Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve – 99 points
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve picks up the power at 15.6% alcohol, but also has a slightly more saturated opaque/purple color. The wine has a glorious nose of graphite, white flowers, blueberries and blackberries and licorice followed by a full-bodied wine with great precision and delineation, super freshness, vibrancy, and compelling richness and extraction. The finish goes on for a good 55 seconds. This is flirting with perfection in a real serious way. Drink it over the next 25-30 years.
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2013 Odette Estate Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Estate – 95+ points
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate exhibits graphite, blackberry and cassis, chocolate and a touch of mineral in a full-bodied, layered and impressively pure style. It’s a big wine for Stags Leap (15.4% alcohol), but gorgeously pure, with everything well-knit into a sensational equilibrium. This is only a baby, but promises to hit its peak in 7-10 years and last 25-30.

 

 

 

Thank you for your great support, and we look forward to sharing a glass with you soon!

To purchase wines from our wineries click here
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Last Minute Thanksgiving Wine and Beer Guide

With Thanksgiving just days away find out what our Noe Valley team at PlumpJack Wine & Spirits will be drinking with their turkey feast in this last minute Thanksgiving wine and beer guide.


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Molly’s Thanksgiving Beer Recommendations:

Almanac’s Dogpatch Grand Cru
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A bold, robust sour aged in red wine barrels for over a year with a blend Zinfandel, Syrah, Tannat, Petite Sirah, and Tempranillo grapes to create an intricately vinous, tannic, and exceptionally original brew. This elegant beer brings tannic red wine notes with tart, sour yeast components. Perfect with cranberry sauce.

Almanac’s Farmers Reserve Grand Cru
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Almanac’s Farmers Reserve was brewed as an ode to delicate and aromatic white wines. California-grown Muscat Blanc grapes were added to an imperial version of their sour blonde ale then aged in white wine barrels for over a year. Try this for a celebratory toast or a before dinner treat.

Firestone Walkers Velvet Merlin

Velvet Merlin oatmeal stout is the perfect beer to go with your Thanksgiving dessert. Rich chocolate and roasted coffee notes will complement the end of a delicious meal!

Stephanie’s Thanksgiving Wine Recommendations:
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Broc Cellars Love Red 2014

A light bodied red blend of Carignan, Valdigui, and Syrah this loveable red is perfect for the Thanksgiving dinner table. With notes of bright red fruits, wild flowers, and hints of earth and dried herbs this is sure to become a new favorite for the Thanksgiving dinner table. vc
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Robert Sinskey Pinot Gris 2012

With aromas and flavors of melon, ginger-spiced pear, almond and apple blossom this vibrant wine is a worthy dinner companion. Weighty on the mid-palate it is more than capable of holding its own amongst all the flavors a thanksgiving meal has to offer.

Elio’s Thanksgiving Wine Recommendations:
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Nusserhof Lagrien Riserva 2009
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I love this producer and the job that he does with Lagrein, an indigenous grape varietal from Alto Adige. Elegance, light tannins, a gentle spiciness and fresh acidity makes a perfect match for a turkey dinner and the works. Earthy stuffing with mushrooms and chestnuts, cranberry sauce and gravy will heavenly sing with this wine!
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San Fereolo, Coste di Riavolo, Langhe Bianco, 2011
This white wine comes from Piedmont. A blend of two varietals not very usual for this region, Riesling and Gewürztraminer, makes for a wine with kaleidoscopic aromatic nuances and a rich fruit palette. Apricot, lychee and passion fruits mixed with mineral notes making this wine an excellent companion for pumpkin dishes from soups to pies, as well as with crab (sorry no Dungeness this year!) and lobster biscuits.

Italian Wine Club Tasting Notes: June 2015

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We hope you enjoy the June Italian Wine Club tasting notes, courtesy of Elio Longobardi of PlumpJack Wine & Spirits. In the northwestern corner of Italy nest a tiny jewel of region. Tucked above Piemonte, surrounded by the Gratian Alps in the north, where it shares a border with France and Switzerland. The Monte Bianco, or Mont Blanc, towers over the valleys’ region at 4,810 meters (15,781ft) making this mountain the highest peak in Europe and the 17th in world. Valle d’Aosta is more renowned for their naturalistic beauty, striking alpine range, bringing thousands of rock climbers, alpine skiers and avid excursionists into the region. Beautiful castles dot the valleys, 72 in the main valley alone, built between the II and the XVI centuries. The castles are one of the principal attractions for tourists. The wine is a pleasant and unexpected surprise, as it is hard to imagine this place suitable for growing vines, but Valle d’Aosta produces some very fascinating and unique wines. Get your hiking boots on, and let’s start to climb up to reach the wine region at the top of the world.mens nike air max

 Elio Longobardi, Italian Wine Specialist
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Valle d’Aosta a.k.a. Vallée d’Aoste, was originally a big glacier, when the glacier receded it left a wide valley furrowed by the river Dora Baltea that cut across the region for 100km (62mi). This mountain territory, 3268 km2 (1261 square miles), with a population of 126.000 inhabitants, makes the small and less populate region of Italy. Aosta is the capitol and also the only province, and has been populated since the 4th century B.C. by Celt tribes until the Romans annexed it 25 B.C. Always in constant commercial contact with their neighbors, France, across the Alps made the Valdostani a bilingual ethnic group where French is spoken equally if not more than Italian. The Fascists forbide the use of French language in the schools and in the press, and for this reason Valle d’Aosta was not a fertile ground for Mussolini and his ideology. The opposition to the dictatorship was strong. In 1948 the region acquires the Autonomist Regional Status that grants the right of self-government, though still part of Italy. Nowadays we have a total of five regions in Italy that benefit of the same legislative powers; beside Valle d’Aosta also Trentino-Alto-Adige, Friuli-Venezia-Giulia, Sicilia and Sardegna are elevated to this status.
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Who would have thought you could plant vineyards at 4,000 feet and make wine too? The geography is alpine, high peaks, and temperatures below zero most of the year would discourage any sane vintner. Not the Valdostani. They terraced the steep slopes with walls of rocks and bricks to contain the scars terrain formed by glacier alluvial soil of rock moraine and sand. The vines did the rest of the job, digging deep in search of nutriments they also helped to keep the soil from getting loose and prone to slide downhill. Working the land in this condition requires giving up the support of mechanization and industrial technologies, all the job in the vineyards is up to the farmer’s arms and legs. The terrain often reaches inclines up to 30% requiring you to be more of a climber than farmer. Many call this ‘Viticultura Eroica’, which can be accurately translated as ‘Extreme Viticulture’.
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Valle d’Aosta produces 0.1% of the total Italian wine production, making of about 1 million bottles on an area apt to cultivation of 1290 acres. What makes those wines more alluring is their unique peculiarity. We’ve already talked about the many grape varieties of each Italian region, here are even more. Grapes that are limited only to this specific area and you wont find them elsewhere. White grapes: Prie’ Blanc, Malvoisie, Petit Arvine. Red grapes: Cornalin, Mayolet, Petit Rouge, Premetta, Vien de Nus and Fumin. There also other important grape such as Nebbiolo from near by Piemonte, here called Picotendro. Gamay, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Chardonnay are cultivated as well. 
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Aosta Valley, Italy

Aosta Valley, Italy


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Pavese Ermes, Blanc de Morgex et de la Salle, Vallée d’Aoste 2002 D.O.P.
Ermes Pavese is a youthful grower in the commune of La Ruine just outside of the town of Morgex in the high Alps, just minutes from the summit of Mont Blanc.  Pavese works with the native grape known as Prié Blanc. This is the old varietal of the region was first mentioned in documents dated in 1691. The name probably refers to the wine’s use in Sunday Mass by priests (priest, in French). Starting with barely two hectares of vineyards, situated at about 1200 meters (~4000feet) a.s.l., Ermes has gradually expanded his holdings in this high altitude zone. He now produces three versions of Blanc de Morgex et de La Salle. Besides the bottle that we’ve selected, Ermes makes a version barrel aged and a dessert wine. Basically an ice-wine, the grapes are harvested in December when temperatures are between 17 and 14 Fahrenheit. Because these vineyards are so isolated, Pavese has been able to work with the original, pre-phylloxera rootstock since that parasite never infiltrated this area, because of the high elevation and sandy soil, when it came sweeping through Europe at the end of 1800. To understand the difficulties and the hard labor required in making wine here, you must understand that in order to plant vines the farmers have to remove all the rocks that cover the terrain until they get to the soil. Removing them manually, one by one. This labor of love produces wines that are the pure expression of this terroir. Nervy, crispy and racy with minerality that speaks of glacier and moraine rocks.
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Pavese Ermes

Pavese Ermes

Pavese Blanc de Morgex fruit is harvested between the end of September beginning of October. All the clusters are softly pressed, vinification takes place in stainless steel tanks and then filtered and bottled. This wine in the glass has a bright clear yellow straw color with golden reflections. Aromas are clean, the palate loaded with fresh acidity with a whisper er of aromatic herbs such as thyme and chamomile, floral notes of hawthorn, white fruit tones, pear Williams and yellow plums. The finish is long with accents of white pepper notes. Perfect as aperitif, it also works great with fish and white meat dishes as well with semi-firm aged cheeses.
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La Cantina di Cuneaz Nadir, Badebec, Rosso-Vallée d’Aoste 2012 DOP
Nadir Cuneaz is a young and enthusiastic wine maker, driven by a passion for his land, he puts all his energy into the vineyards owned by his family for over a century. The Cuneaz family has a mere 0.5 hectares near the town of Gressan, in the southern part of the region, reflecting a local mix of grape varieties, some of which were planted over 100 years ago. All the work in the vineyards is rigorously maintained and manually done by hand. The harvest usually happens at the end of October to allow plenty of time for the fruit to reach maturation. The grapes harvested earlier are left to dry for a couple of weeks until they achieve the right sugar concentration and then combine together for the vinification. The wine spends then one year in barrels in the cellar, which also serves as one of the rooms in their home.

The wine we’ve selected is composed of 90% Petit Rouge with small amounts of Fumin and Vien de Nus. The wine hints at the passito element, with rich, ripe fruit. Open the bottle, pour a glass and let the olfactory sensations bring reminders of mountain fruits and herbs. There are dark, sweet notes of blackberry, complimented by alpine flowers that reflect the position of the vineyards. The rich, balsamic notes of stone ripe fruits envelopes the palate with a soft, warm alcoholic accent well supported by a fresh and sapid structure. The name of this wine ‘Badabec’, comes from the mythical monster that is said to roam the forests above Gressan and occasionally feast on misbehaving children in the village! The perfect match for this wine is the Soupetta di Cogne (see recipe below).

Soupettas di Cogne (Cogne’s soup)
This dish, as all the Valdostana traditional cuisine are made with the few ingredients available in those remote valleys in the past when long winters made impossible any contact and exchange with the regions around. You may not think this recipe as a summer one but after a long day of hiking in the high elevation I can ensure you’ll be very hungry and something like this will put you in the right mood.

Ingredients (serves 4):
500 g fontina* cheese cut in ¼ inch slices
200 g butter
500 g rice
2 and 1/2 cup beef broth
1 kg stale rye bread
¼ tsp. grated nutmeg
Salt

1. Cut the bread in ½ inch slices and fried in 100 g of butter until the bread has a nice golden color.
2. In another pan, with 50 g of butter cook the rice as you do risotto, adding slowly 2 cups of beef broth and a pinch of salt. Cook on medium-high heat until the rice is almost done, 15-20 minutes.
3. Using a baking pan, start with strata of bread, then rice and top with slices of fontina. Repeat the process until all the bread, rice and cheese is used finishing the last top with fontina.
4. Pour now over the half-cup of remaining broth, melted butter and the nutmeg.
5. Bake in the oven at 375F for 4 minutes and serve warm.

* Fontina is the most famous regional cheese. It get its name from the pasture area called Font.

The People of PlumpJack: Debbie Brown


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Debbie Brown
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Featured this week on The People of PlumpJack, is General Manager of PlumpJack Wine & Spirits, Debbie Brown. She has been with the Fillmore wine store for 15 years. On her free time Debbie enjoys going to the beach, spending time with her cats and participating in a fantasy football league. Debbie’s favorite part of the job is interacting with customers and getting to know new people.
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1. What would your last meal be?
Braised Short ribs, mashed potatoes, and Caesar salad or a cheese burger from Nopa with their fabulous fries.
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2.What is the best advice you have ever received?
Don’t promise anything you can’t deliver.

3.What is your top bucket list item?
African Safari

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4. If you could travel back to any one point in time what would it be?
1920’s–the flappers were fabulous–loved the clothes and hair styles

5.If they made a film of your life what star would you like to play you?
Jennifer Aniston
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6.What is your personal mantra?
Things happen for a reason, and everything has a way of working out for the best.  I will survive!

7. If today was the last day of your life, how would you spend it?
Eating a burrito at the beach watching the ocean.
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8.What is the last thing you googled?
Information about phosphorus and protein in cat food

 “Debbie has admirable determination in tackling projects. She can overcome obstacles that would waylay most others, and come out shinning on the other side. Her baking talents have touched many, and she shares her warmth and caring with everyone she comes in contact with.”

-Paul Birman, Wine & Spirits buyer at PlumpJack Wine & Spirits in the Marina.

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The Reviews are In: Find Out Which Wine Scored 100

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Danielle Cyrot, Aaron Miller, Jeff Owens

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We have some exciting news to share – the latest reviews from Robert Parker were published recently and we are humbled and honored by Mr. Parker’s reviews of our wines from all three wineries: Odette Estate, PlumpJack Winery, and CADE Estate. We were already so proud of Aaron Miller, Danielle Cyrot, and Jeff Owens and the wine they produced– and Robert Parker’s words simply reinforce that.  Take a look at the spectacular reviews below!
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2012 PlumpJack Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Oakville is from the well-known McWilliam Oakville Vineyard, made famous by Nils Venge when he made wine at Villa Mt. Eden from this site. It has rich, broad, but velvety tannins, a medium to full-bodied mouthfeel, and up-front drinkability (which is somewhat surprising), but gorgeous seductiveness and plenty of blackcurrant and black cherry fruit. This full-bodied, precocious and lusty style should drink well for 10-15 years.
93 Points
Release Date: February 2015
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PJWinery2012 PlumpJack Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Estate Oakville adds a lot of structure and even more density to the basic cuve?e. It’s an inky ruby/purple, has notes of graphite and toasty vanilla, but is dominated by the black cherry and blackcurrant fruit spectrum. Full-bodied, powerful and formidable in extract and richness, this wine will benefit from 3-5 years of cellaring and keep 25-30 years. It’s a stunning example of the vintage from a great terroir.
96+ Points
Release Date: September 2015
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2012 CADE ‘Napa Valley’ Cabernet Sauvignon
The opulent, fleshy, sexy, consumer friendly 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon possesses a dense ruby/purple color as well as oodles of blackcurrant fruit intermixed with floral and blueberry notes. Lush and plush, it can be drunk now or cellared for 10-15 years, although such well-balanced and forward wines as this can sometimes age two decades or more.”
92 Points
Release Date: November 2015
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2012 CADE Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
The stunning, dark ruby/purple-tinged 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate boasts beautiful mulberry, blueberry and black raspberry fruit notes, a pure, full-bodied style, sweet tannin, adequate acidity and an opulent, lush mouthfeel. This offering is atypical for a Howell Mountain cuve?e, which tends to be more foreboding in its youthfulness. Drink this beauty over the next 15+ years.
94 Points
Release Date: October 2015 
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2012 CADE Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
From the owners of Plumpjack Winery, Cade Estate Winery began strongly, and continues to exhibit promise.  The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve comes in a unique bottle that is similar to the special bottle used by Joseph Phelps for their Insignia (which reminds me of a grenade). A blockbuster superstar, this inky/purple-hued 2012 is filled with cre?me de cassis, blueberry and mulberry fruit that hides any notion of its oak aging. Opulent, voluptuously textured, multilayered and stunningly rich with a finish that lasts 45+ seconds, this magnificent Cabernet should age effortlessly for two decades or more. But who can wait that long? Not me.
98 Points
Release Date: May 2015

2012 Odette Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
This is one of the new, hot, fashionable and much-watched small estates just off the Silverado Trail in Stag’s Leap. My first impressions were exceptional. Of the two Cabernets, one is the reserve and the other their standard offering.  The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate (75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Merlot and 11% Cabernet Franc) is a near perfect, glorious example of Napa Cabernet Sauvignon from an absolutely magnificent vintage. The scary thing is that 2013 might be not only as good, but better. The color is dense ruby/purple and the wine shows classic cre?me de cassis notes along with some floral underpinnings, deep raspberry and a touch on minerality. Good crisp acidity provides focus and uplift through this wine’s other exuberant and concentrated component parts. This is a stunner, and a classic Stag’s Leap
96 Points
Release Date: February 2015
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OdetteWineLabels2012 Odette Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Estate could be a candidate for perfection. With absolutely concentrated essences of blueberry, blackberry and cassis complemented by wild flowers and very subtle background oak, this stunningly concentrated, rich Cabernet Sauvignon has real first-growth complexity and power. Absolutely spectacular, this wine is simply chewy and profound. It should have 25 years longevity and drinkability ahead of it.
100 Points
Release Date: September 2015
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Thank you for your great support, and we look forward to sharing a glass with you soon!

To purchase wines from our wineries click here

Cow Hollow Microhood

What’s the story behind the PlumpJack Wine Store?

PlumpJack Wine Store was started in 1992 as the first business for the PlumpJack Group, by then founder Gavin Newsom. It’s mission is to make the wine-buying experience approachable and to remove the intimidation factor. In 1992 we had more than 100 wines priced at under $10 per bottle. We now have more than 300 selections that are $25 or under and an expansive collection of spirits and domestic craft beers.

What is a little known secret(s) about your business?
If you buy a bottle of wine from the wine store and take it across the street to the Balboa Cafe, there is no corkage fee. And we will deliver your wine and spirits for FREE in San Francisco proper for all orders over $100. Gift wrapping and enclosure cards are complimentary.

Can you tell us a little about your clubs?

Our Monthly Wine Club (2 bottles) has been operating for more than 20 years, and in that time we have featured wines from all over, from California and Oregon to France, Portugal, Greece and beyond. Our members love that the club gives them a chance to discover new wines from different regions every month. These wines are carefully chosen and are always small production, hand-crafted wines with unique stories.

Our Red Rogues (not rouge) club is a quarterly club that no one else is doing. This is where we pick three red wines that have a unique combination of character, varietal, viticulture, and appellation that members can experience the difference in style and terroir. For example, past features have included three Amarones from Italy; three Pinot Noirs from Oregon; or three different Shiraz from the same winemaker, but from different appellations. It’s a fabulous way to compare and contrast wines that have similarities but display differences as well.


The Case Club is a perfect way to design your own parameters on a monthly or bi-monthly time frame so that you always have a stash of wine to drink, to give as a gift, or to take to someone’s house. Become a member if you don’t have time to shop, if you have unexpected guests frequently, or you are tired of grocery store selections. You set the pricing parameters as well as the varietal type, countries, all red, all white, all rose, or all sparkling—then we do the work so you don’t have to trouble yourself with parking or picking up. We deliver right to your door.

PlumpJack Gift Baskets & Wooden Boxes

Purchase one of our gift baskets for the holiday season. Gift baskets and wooden boxes are filled with wine of your choice and our gift baskets are packed with gourmet foods to your delight. For more information visit our site here.

Memorial Day Wine and Swine Pairing

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Memorial Day is all about loving what you’ve got. It’s an opportunity to step back, slow down, and spend time with the people who make you feel great. It’s a chance to raise a glass to those who have fought for our country and commemorate the freedom with which we are blessed. That being said, Memorial Day is often all about the family and friends feast. This year we wanted to give you some pairing pointers on how eat well and share the love! Our buddy Kelly at PlumpJack Wine and Spirits Noe Valley compiled this lovely list for you:

Pairing with Pork: Six Wines That Go Well With Swine

  1. Unti Syrah – there’s always room for a nice juicy and peppery Syrah at the cook-out table. We can imagine many pairings, but the one that keeps sticking out is juicy, bacon-topped hamburger straight from the grill. 
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  2. Melville Santa Rita Hills Pinot Noir – Cherries are always a nice accompaniment to pork, this time it’s packed in your Pinot. How about a juicy pork chop brined and then thrown on the grill with a nice char and a full flavored Pinot to wash it all down. Succulent pork belly sliders anyone?unti
  3. Ridge Sonoma County Zinfandel – The perfect compliment with a rack of smoky ribs. The robust zinfandel flavor with hints of boysenberry gives the ribs that extra kick.ridge
  4. CADE Cabernet Sauvignon – The blueberry undertones work well with pulled pork sandwiches. 
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  5. Sean Thackrey Sangiovese –  Sip on this with spicy fennel sausages. 

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  6. Joseph Swan Cotes du Rhone –  Perfect alongside some teriyaki pork kebabs.swan
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 All wines mentioned are available at both PlumpJack Wine and Spirit locations
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