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Castello di Amorosa

Mary Davidek
 
February 24, 2014 | Mary Davidek

Score!

American Idol, Miss USA, The Olympics, elections, books, dancing, movies, food, wine. From singing competitions to the food we eat and the wine we drink, it is compared and calibrated by a score. What are the parameters used to grant a number or a rating and how reliable are ratings when so much of what we find pleasing, appealing or excellent is purely subjective. For instance, can we look to a score on a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon to gauge a wine’s potential for enjoyment when individual tastes vary so widely? Wine is scrutinized, gauged and rated not by peers or consumers but, by 'professionals' who ascribe these ratings as a score intended for submission to the public via magazines, websites, social media etc.

Let’s dissect and analyze a wine score.  What goes into a wine rating?

A wine rating is a score assigned by one or more wine critics for a wine tasted as a summary of that critic's evaluation of that wine. A wine rating is therefore a subjective quality score, typically numerical. Over the last couple of decades, the 50-100 scale introduced by Robert M Parker Jr. has become the standard. This scale is now used by ‘the big 3’, Wine Enthusiast, Wine Spectator, and Wine Advocate.

95-100 Classic: a great wine
90-94 Outstanding: a wine of superior character and style
85-89 Very good: a wine with special qualities
80-84 Good: a solid, well-made wine
75-79 Mediocre: a drinkable wine that may have minor flaws
50-74 Not recommended

In addition to a simple numerical score most wine ratings are meant to be a supplement to the wine tasting notes, which are brief descriptions of the critic's impression of the wine, including aromatics, flavor qualities, and ageing potential or drinking window. However, the emphasis is more often on the score applied by a critic rather than on the actual tasting notes.

Castello di Amorosa wines have been well received by ‘The Big 3’. Parker’s accolades for Il Barone and La Castellana were a huge boon for Castello di Amorosa as one of our first published big ratings. Wine Enthusiast’s critical acclaim for Castello's wines is a source of great pride and most recently, Wine Spectator has granted some very big numbers indeed.

2010 La Castellana: James Laube, Wine Spectator (92 Points) – Intense, with firm, ripe, vibrant cedar, red and dark berry, anise and loamy earth flavors, framed by chewy tannins and ending with a long finish laced with notes of black licorice. Drink now through 2024.

2010 Don Thomas: James Laube, Wine Spectator (94 Points) – Amazingly complex and refined, tuned to a mix of red and dark berry that’s elegant and graceful without sacrificing Cabernet’s power and torque. Ends with classic Bourdeaux-like cedar and cigar box touches, gliding along with fine-grained tannins. Drink now through 2028.

In an effort to remain unbiased, educated and in-touch with the amazing wines of Napa Valley we conduct blind tastings throughout the year for our Castello staff to participate in.

A great tasting needs a great room!

We tasted 27 different Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon in the Great Hall of Castello di Amorosa--

Here is the line-up....

The bottles were placed in a brown bag and numbered by a non-tasting non-voting participant....

 

                                                ....which guarantees an unbiased result.                                                                     

            

Castello Pres Georg Salzner and Vice President Jim Sullivan enter the results.

The room cheered when the winner was revealed!

Check out more great scores for Castello di Amorosa's wines-

Castello di Amorosa Wine Accolades

 

Time Posted: Feb 24, 2014 at 9:09 PM
Mary Davidek
 
February 6, 2014 | Mary Davidek

Opening Ceremonies and Gold Medals

As the western United States wades through another year of drought and record- breaking almost non-existent rainfall totals (so far!), old man winter has tackled the mid-west and sucker-punched much of the nation with record-breaking cold temps. Another event is approaching to further benchmark winter 2014. On February 06 the 22nd Winter Olympic Games begin in Sochi Russia—and the opening ceremonies televised on February 07 are sure-to-be epic.

The first celebration of the Winter Olympic Games was held in Chamonix, France in 1924 and have now been hosted on three continents. Twelve countries have attended every Winter Olympic games and six of those (Austria, Canada, Finland, Norway, Sweden and the United States) have earned medals at every Winter Olympic Games. However, only one - the United States - has earned gold at each Olympic Games.

In wine country, January ushers in one more iconic winter event, The San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. This competition began in 1983 as the Cloverdale Citrus Fair Wine Competition.  Today, it is known as the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and holds the title of the largest competition of American Wines in the World….a wine Olympics.  On the subject of olympics and medals and earning gold (in wine competitions there is a double gold and the coveted Best of Class!), I could turn this into an all-around high-five big kudos to Castello di Amorosa’s amazing wine making team with the recent Gold Medal performances but instead, I am getting ready for a sure-to-be-epic opening ceremony of my own, time for a glass of gold medal winning Cabernet Sauvignon.

Beyond Double Gold—Best of Class

2012 Pinot Bianco, 2012 Gewurztraminer and 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon

 

Best of Class and tonight, best in the glass

2009 Castello di Amorosa Cabernet Sauvignon is one of my favorite Cabernets. It exhibits depth and strength but exudes finesse and elegance. Exactly what every gold medalist needs—power and grace!

 

 

Opening Ceremony Night Dinner --Because timing is important too!

Salisbury Steak with Fingerling Potato Hash 

                                                                                  

Make this revised classic in 30 minutes!

For the Salisbury Steaks combine:

1.5 pound lean ground beef

1 tsp. coarse ground pepper

½ sweet onion finely chopped

½ package onion soup mix

1 tsp. mustard

1 tsp. ketchup

1 egg

2 tsps. Worcestershire

Form into 4-6 oval patties and brown in large sauté pan, approximately 2-3 minutes each side. Remove and place in shallow backing dish and finish in 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes.

Potato Hash:

Dice potatoes, mushrooms, and remaining ½ sweet onion. Brown onion in 3 Tbsp. butter. Add mushrooms and potatoes after onions have begun to sweat. Add beef stock/broth, salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a slow simmer adding broth as needed approx.15 minutes.

Remove Salisbury Steaks from oven and serve with hash

Enjoy!

Time Posted: Feb 6, 2014 at 12:33 PM
Alison Cochrane Hernandez
 
February 5, 2014 | Alison Cochrane Hernandez

Castello wines win big at SF Chronicle Wine Competition!

Results are in from the 2014 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, and once again Castello di Amorosa’s wines shone brightly among the competition!

This year’s competition included a record number of 5,825 wines entered from over 1,500 wineries from over 25 states, making this the largest competition of wines in America.

We are proud to announce that this year three of our wines received the Best of Class distinction, and we received one Double Gold Medal, six Gold Medals, four Silver Medals, and one Bronze Medal! Here are our winning wines:

2012 Pinot Bianco – BEST OF CLASS

2012 Dry Gewurztraminer – BEST OF CLASS

2009 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon – BEST OF CLASS

2010 Napa Valley Merlot – DOUBLE GOLD MEDAL

2010 “Il Barone” Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon – GOLD MEDAL

2009 “La Castellana” Reserve Super Tuscan – GOLD MEDAL

2012 Bien Nacido Vineyards Reserve Chardonnay – GOLD MEDAL

2012 Napa Valley Chardonnay – GOLD MEDAL

2011 “Zingaro” Zinfandel – GOLD MEDAL

2010 Napa Valley Sangiovese – GOLD MEDAL

2012 Anderson Valley Reserve Pinot Noir – SILVER MEDAL

2011 King Ridge Vineyard Pinot Noir – SILVER MEDAL

2012 Los Carneros Pinot Noir – SILVER MEDAL

2009 “Il Brigante” Red Blend – SILVER MEDAL

2012 Late Harvest Gewurztraminer – BRONZE MEDAL

You can attend the public tasting event taking place in San Francisco at Fort Mason on Saturday, February 15th, where over 800 wineries will be pouring from 1:30 – 5:00pm. Be sure to find us among the crowd to taste our award winners!

You can check out ticket information and view the full list of winners at www.winejudging.com

Time Posted: Feb 5, 2014 at 2:32 PM
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