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Wine Trivia - Tannin (Wine Wino)

Need clarification on some wine terminology to start sounding more like a wino?

Tannin... Have you ever eaten a seeded grape thinking is was seedless and the bitter seed taste wrecked the grape’s sweetness? That was tannin. We highly suggest you just try eating some grape seeds and you will never misunderstand tannins again. Good tannins add to the complexity (definition coming soon) and depth of the wine and create structure for the wine. Unripe, young tannins can taste bitter and will make your tongue pucker up. Properly balanced, tannin acts as a preservative and is the main reason most reds need to be aged some. It comes from the seeds, skins and stems of the grape and are found mostly in red wines. A wine heavy in tannins is referred to as 'Tannic'.
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Wino to Go (Wine Wino)

Holiday parties are on… don’t forget to bring a hostess gift!! That’s right. Ms. (or Mr.) Manners says so! We’ve picked a few well rated wines which won’t break the bank to go on your list of quick grabs sure to impress. Our favorite store is of course Cost Plus for their array of international wines and inexpensive pricing (and some bottles just look impressive). But, for most, this list of wines should fit the bill no matter what your host or hostess is planning for the evening…

Have a Happy and Safe Holiday Season… and by the way, have you bought your friends and family their gifts yet? Why not buy them a Wino Club kit? It’s the perfect gift that will give back to you assuming they invite you to join their party. Go to for more information...

Darcy & Stacy


Beauregard 2004 Trout Gulch Vineyard Chardonnay $25 RATED 89 Volume and roundness with classic oak flavors to smooth out the edges. Santa Cruz Mountains, CA

Meridian 2005 Chardonnay $10 RATED 87 Hero on a budget… a smartly styled coastal chardonnay with a crisp cool flavor from the Santa Barbara County. Paso Robles, CA

Peay 2004 Viognier $34 RATED 94 Made by a woman vintner, this wine is fermented in 5 year old French oak and is a beautiful wine with loquat and litchi flavors. Sonoma Coast Annapolis, CA

Hall 2005 Sauvignon Blanc $20 RATED 90 Acidic dryness with a tart lime and green apple crispness. This has no oak at all, making it a classy sipper. Napa Valley, CA

Santa Barbara Winery 2001 Lafond Vineyard Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc $16 RATED 95 This is a very sweet wine… perhaps for a cookie exchange? Just a thought. This is described as an apricot-infused crème brulee (yum). Santa Ynez Valley, CA


Orogeny – 2004 Green Valley Pinot Noir for $30 RATED 94 It’s a great deal on a thoroughly enjoyable Pinot with a great rating You’d better like your host to bring this one. Delfina, Orogeny, Santa Rosa, CA

Rodney Strong 2004 Pinot Noir $19 RATED 88 Easy to find and not expensive… it’s a smooth sensuous wine with a dry silky texture. Russian River Valley, CA

Ballentine 2002 Pocai Vineyard Merlot $22 RATED 92 Clean, sweet and savory with delicate strawberry flavors. Napa Valley, CA

Steltzner 2003 Claret $18 RATED 90 Based on a Cabernet Sauvignon, this Bordeaux style blend is a great price for a Napa Cab of this quality. Napa Valley, CA

Alexander Valley Vineyards 2003 Redemption Zin Zinfandel $25 RATED 92 Give this biggie some time to breathe and you’ll be smacking up some beautiful fruity flavors inside this rich wine. Dry Creek Valley, CA

Zinfandel Fast Facts (Wine Wino)

In a nutshell, in case you don't want to read the full posting about Red Zinfandel, this wine has a dense pigment, high tannin, high alcohol and good acid. You will find the aroma enticing with the scent of spice and dark berries. Look for some of the following scents and flavors when tasting:

Black Pepper
Plumy Fruit

The Holidays are Coming – Are You Ready to Zin? (Wine Wino)

Red Zinfandel is an irreverent wine made primarily in the irreverent New World atmosphere of California. There are no heavy restrictions on experimentation and therefore, winemakers here are able to really cut loose.

Now, the inexperienced wine drinker wrinkles their nose at the mere suggestion that they drink Zinfandel because of the sweet pink version made popular in the 1980’s. Pink wines are no longer considered chic here in the United States but that trend single-handedly saved the Zinfandel grape from being ritualistically ripped from vineyards throughout the state. And for the Red Zinfandel lover – that would have been a travesty.

A ‘Big’ Zinfandel can have 15% to 17% alcohol. Depending on the age you will find that some Zinfandels have a light fruity flavor and others are deep with tannins for aging. This is a smooth drinking red with a whollop. So many of the bottles you will find will be fun to buy even if you have no idea as to the quality of the wine. There’s Cardinal Zin and 7 Deadly Zins (one of my personal favorites if for nothing else the back of the bottle is a great read) and many more aptly labeled vintages.

If you see the designation of ‘Old Vines’ on the label, it means that the vineyard did not pull everything out after the pink boom. It is actually one of the oldest grapes in California and historically comes from a Croatian grape. The grapes will be more mature and more intense in flavor because the older the vine is, the less it produces but the more concentrated the grapes become.

Enjoy your Wino this month.

And don’t forget to visit our website at There we have some great food pairings for Zinfandel and you can subscribe to our newsletter to get this news emailed to you each month.

Darcy & Stacy

Welcome to The Wino Club Press (Wine Wino)

We are so excited to launch our official website at that we just had to blog about it. If you like to drink wine then this blog will enhance your knowledge about this beautiful juice. If you don't like to drink alone and like to hang out with friends then we encourage you to buy one of our kits and start your own Wino Club today.

In our blog, we'll be talking about a different wine each month so be sure to subscribe. We will also be posting our podcasts in the next couple of weeks so you can take our pearls of wisdom on the road with you. Please send us your questions... and you could win a free wine holder.

-Darcy & Stacy