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Wanda Mann
New York City
I am a native New Yorker with a passion for travel, food & wine, and little black dresses!
Recent Activity
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"Wine, just as a guitar, requires discipline and care, and above all a sensitive soul to interpret them.” Marcelo Pelleriti, winemaker, Bodega Monteviejo I suspected that my Instagram Live chat with Marcelo Pelleriti would be no ordinary virtual wine tasting, but I certainly didn't expect it to end with a live guitar and vocal performance. He's going to be a tough act to follow. I'm still smiling. A true renaissance man, Marcelo is not only one of Argentina's most celebrated winemakers, he's made a name for himself in France too. Marcelo makes wine in both countries, and his 2010 Château... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Wine With Wanda
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Jesús Artajona Serrano has been the winemaker at ENATE since it was founded in 1992. Traveling by trains, planes, and automobiles may be a risky proposition in this age of social distancing, but you can still explore the world through wine. I recently took a joyful journey to Somontano, Spain, with ENATE winemaker Jesús Artajona Serrano on Instagram Live. image courtesy of Bodega ENATE Somontano is located in northeastern Spain, south of the Pyrenees, on the natural border with France. I first visited Somontano in 2017 and have been there three times; I fell in love with the wines, the... Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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image courtesy of Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery "I strongly believe in the Russian River Valley's capacity to consistently produce world class wines. The key is cool breezes and fog from the nearby Pacific Ocean blanket." -Theresa Heredia, Winemaker, Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery When does a wine cross the threshold from being good to very good, or even great? I don't seek perfection in wines because I'm not certain it exists. And let's be honest, barring technical flaws that render a wine undrinkable, perfect wines, just like self-righteous people, can be a bit boring. For me, a wine goes... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Enrique Tirado, Winemaker, Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon image courtesy of Viña Don Melchor With so much turmoil in the world, I am grateful that I get to escape for a bit and travel virtually through wine. I don't take it for granted. I recently had the pleasure of tasting on Instagram Live with the esteemed and extremely talented Enrique Tirado, winemaker for Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon (Puente Alto Vineyard, Chile). When I met Enrique last year, the world was a very different place. Thank goodness for the elegant consistency of Don Melchor. First created in 1987, the second vintage of... Continue reading
Posted Nov 12, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Daniel Pi, Chief Winemaker, Trapiche image courtesy of Trapiche Whenever someone asks what sparked my interest in wine and led me on my current path as a chronicler and enthusiastic student of fermented grapes, I confess that I struggle to offer a short and simple answer. Like many of us, a collection of past experiences shaped my current reality. But if I have to pinpoint one moment that gave me a firm push towards wine, it was meeting winemaker Daniel Pi of Trapiche in 2009. That fateful day marked the first time I sat with a winemaker and tasted wines... Continue reading
Posted Nov 2, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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image courtesy of Talbott Vineyards Even domestic travel is a dodgy venture these days, so I was thrilled to participate in a virtual wine journey to California’s Santa Lucia Highlands courtesy of Talbott Vineyards. Santa Lucia Highlands may not yet have the global name recognition of some other Golden State appellations, but it is home to some very impressive wineries, and Talbott is one of the most iconic. Located in California’s Central Coast in the east-facing terraces of the Santa Lucia mountain range and south of Monterey Bay, wine grapes were first planted in the Santa Lucia Highlands in the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 31, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Amelie Derrieux-Sable, Director of Marketing, Champagne Henriot I’m still smiling after my sparkling Instagram Live conversation with Amelie Derrieux‑Sable​, Director of Marketing for Champagne Henriot. Known for their distinctive Chardonnay driven style, Champagne Henriot was founded in Reims in 1808 and is one of the few remaining family-owned houses in Champagne. Watch our chat and tasting by clicking the video above, on Instagram, or YouTube. We started off with their flagship Champagne Henriot Blanc de Blancs ($65). Aged for 4 years on the lees, it is an elegant expression of Chardonnay that sashays across the palate with delicate bubbles, crisp... Continue reading
Posted Oct 29, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Carmenere grapes image courtesy Wines of Chile Carmenere’s dramatic back story always reminds me of a telenovela heroine that lived in the shadows until her true noble identity was revealed. Long mistaken for Merlot, Carmenere arrived in Chile in the 1800’s with other Bordeaux varieties. In 1867, that dastardly louse known as Phylloxera wiped out most of Bordeaux’s vineyards, including Carmenere. Meanwhile, Carmenere was secretly thriving in Chile. After years of obscurity, Carmenere was finally correctly identified in 1994, and the course of Chilean winemaking was forever changed. Now known throughout the world as Chile's signature wine, the quality of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 18, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Isabel Galindo, winemaker for Las Moradas de San Martín My recent Instagram Live chat with Isabel Galindo, winemaker for Las Moradas de San Martín, inspired me to give her a nickname: La Reina de Garnacha (Queen of Garnacha.) Isabel makes Garnacha that sings in the glass. There's nothing generic about the wines of Las Moradas. Made from old-vine Garnacha, with some vines more than 100-years-old, the wines of Las Moradas tell a story of terroir and winemaking that respects nature. Located just one hour from Madrid, Las Moradas is an oasis that feels a world away from the hustle and... Continue reading
Posted Oct 14, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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The silver screen's most famous spy may be best known for the specific way he orders his Martinis, but James Bond, aka 007, is also a fan of bubbly, specifically Champagne Bollinger. Bollinger and Bond have been linked together since Roger Moore ordered it in 1973's Live and Let Die. Bolly, as the Brits affectionately call Bollinger, has been featured in 14 Bond films. And believe it or not, there has never been a formal agreement or exchange of money between Bollinger and the producers of Bond; the deal was sealed with a handshake in 1979 and has been honored... Continue reading
Posted Oct 12, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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One of the many reasons I love Sangiovese is how beautifully it expresses the diverse terroirs of Tuscany. Chianti, Chianti Classico, and Brunello di Montalcino may be Tuscany’s best-known Sangiovese-based wines, but Vino Nobile di Montepulciano also has a rich history and authentic sense of place. Contucci's vineyards in Montepulciano image courtesy of Contucci I recently tasted Contucci Rosso di Montepulciano 2018 DOC ($29.99) and Contucci Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 2015 DOCG ($39.99). If you’re not too familiar with Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, Contucci is a lovely introduction. The Contucci family is one of the oldest in Montepulciano; their roots... Continue reading
Posted Oct 11, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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There's more than one way to sparkle! The next time you're craving a glass of bubbly, pop the cork on a bottle of Rotari Trentodoc. Crafted from Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes grown in steeply terraced vineyards from Trentino's valleys and hills in the heart of the Dolomites, Rotari is an elegant expression of the Italian Alps. Produced using the Metodo Classico, the bubbles in Rotari, and all Trentodoc, are created by a second fermentation in the bottle. Rotari Brut Trentodoc 2014 ($19.99) is the perfect introduction to the Rotari style. Crisp and refreshing, the essence of Chardonnay shines through... Continue reading
Posted Sep 30, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Michael Accurso, winemaker, EnRoute image courtesy of EnRoute During my recent Instagram Live chat with EnRoute winemaker Michael Accurso, I discovered that his passion for Pinot Noir is only rivaled by his great sense of humor and love of cooking. That certainly makes sense: if he hadn't become a winemaker, Michael considered careers as a professional chef or comedian! But don't let his easygoing nature fool you; Michael is a precise and serious winemaker. Founded in 2007 by the partners of Far Niente winery in Napa Valley, EnRoute is committed to crafting wines that express the essence of Pinot Noir... Continue reading
Posted Sep 22, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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If you're a fan of sparkling wines, it's time to pop the cork on a bottle of Méthode Cap Classique from South Africa. Made in the same precise and labor-intensive method as Champagne, the bubbles in Cap Classique wines are also created by a second fermentation in the bottle. However, don't think of Cap Classique as an imitation of Champagne; the process is the same, but these wines are an expression of South African terroir. And the wines of Graham Beck are an authentic introduction to the charms of Méthode Cap Classique. image courtesy of Graham Beck Founded in 1983... Continue reading
Posted Sep 13, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Vineyards at Fattoria di Magliano, in the heart of Tuscany's Maremma region. Maybe I should have consulted a psychic or given a crystal ball a vigorous shake? I certainly would have benefitted from some forewarning that my October 2019 journey to the Maremma region of Tuscany would be my last trip abroad for the foreseeable future. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to keep much of the world on lockdown, memories of past journeys are more precious than ever. Who knows when I'll travel overseas again, but I feel fortunate that the wines, landscapes, and people of Maremma are seared in... Continue reading
Posted Sep 2, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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image courtesy of Early Mountain Believe it or not, every state in the USA makes wine, even Alaska! California accounts for about 85% of American wine production, and while other states can't match their quantities, many are also producing world-class wines, including Virginia. If you've never tasted a wine from Virginia, I encourage you to start with some sensational sips from Early Mountain. Nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Early Mountain's 300-acre property is planted with 55-acres of vineyards. They craft their wines with diverse grape varieties, including Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Malvasia Bianca, Sauvignon Blanc, and Tannat.... Continue reading
Posted Aug 25, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Times have dramatically changed since I started blogging twelve years ago. Newer social media platforms like Instagram have fostered a vibrant and influential wine community. Surely, I'm not the only one that spends too much time scrolling through photos of beautiful vineyards and mouthwatering wines. In addition to my Instagram Live interview series, I frequently post wine reviews on Instagram and thought it would be great to start sharing reviews of the standout wines here on the blog. Shannon, Robin, and Erin Lail I recently tasted two superb wines from Lail Vineyards in Napa Valley - Blueprint Sauvignon Blanc 2018... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Savennières, Loire Valley image courtesy of Loire Valley Wines Like many of you, it's been at least six months since I've traveled beyond my hometown's borders. Hopping a flight for a wine-centric journey fuels my daydreams, but I'm continuing to explore the world through wine. Recently, I took a virtual journey to the Loire Valley with three charming Chenin Blanc wines. Known as the Garden of France, the Loire Valley is France's leading producer of white wines, and the indigenous Chenin Blanc grape is the heart and soul of many of these wines. Because of its natural acidity and fruitiness,... Continue reading
Posted Aug 19, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Nicolas & Christina Seillan I can’t resist beautiful wines and a great love story, and my recent Instagram Live chat with Christina and Nicolas Seillan delivered both. A seventh-generation winemaker, Nicolas is the vigneron at Château Lassègue in Bordeaux and manages production with his wife, Christina. Back in the USA, his father, Pierre Seillan and his daughter Hélène are the winemaker and assistant winemaker at Vérité in Sonoma. Both wineries are a joint venture with Jackson Family Wines. And if you ever doubted the power of wine to bring people together, Nicolas and Christina met when he addressed a wine... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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"I believe that drinkability is at the center of quality." Alberto Antonini, Consulting Winemaker, Mandrarossa A few months before COVID-19 forced our retreat into socially distanced bubbles, I had the pleasure of meeting with renowned winemaking consultant Alberto Antonini. We had never met before, but I certainly didn't need an introduction. For years, Alberto's name had popped up during my wine studies; I would often drink a wine that I enjoyed and discover that he had consulted on its creation. A native of Tuscany, Alberto has worked with some of Italy’s most celebrated producers, including Frescobaldi, Antinori, and Col d’Orcia,... Continue reading
Posted Aug 14, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Martin Sinkoff, Founder, Martin Sinkoff Associates Few people can rival Martin Sinkoff's knowledge of the intricacies of the wine industry. Martin's impressive career has included executive leadership roles with prominent importers and the lifelong Francophile was even honored by the French government for his contributions. He recently founded his own business, Martin Sinkoff Associates, and together with associate Roger C. Bohmrich (Master of Wine), they specialize in business development for the wine and spirits industry. During our recent Instagram Live chat, we discussed Martin's career path and how wineries can navigate the challenges of sales & marketing and position themselves... Continue reading
Posted Aug 13, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Francesco Ricasoli President & Owner, Ricasoli 1141 32nd Baron of Brolio When your family's winemaking history can be traced back to 1141, the family tree is bound to have some exciting twists and turns. In my recent Instagram Live chat with Francesco Ricasoli, we dug into the roots of his family's iconic winery, Ricasoli 1141. Not only are they Italy's oldest winery, Ricasoli 1141 is the fourth oldest family business in the world. The family tree includes Baron Bettino Ricasoli; not only did he serve twice as the Prime Minister of Italy and play a prominent role in its unification... Continue reading
Posted Aug 2, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Ah, Prosecco. We pop the bottles, we toast with it, we use it as the base for our Mimosas, Bellinis, and spritzes. But do we actually know it? I fear that we take Prosecco for granted. To learn more about the world's most popular sparkling wine, in celebration of National Prosecco Week, I recently chatted on Instagram Live with Lorenzo Rispoli, export manager for Val d’Oca – Cantina Produttori di Valdobbiadene. One of Italy’s oldest and largest producers of Prosecco, Val d’Oca’s sparkling wines are made with Glera grapes that are cultivated and vinified in the hills of Valdobbiadene. The... Continue reading
Posted Aug 1, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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Alicia Lini, fourth-generation vintner, Lini 910 Lambrusco is a fantastic thirst quencher during these steamy summer days. Pop a cork on a bottle of Lini 910 and discover why these fizzy & chilled red wines from the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy are so special. I recently had the pleasure of chatting with fourth-generation vintner Alicia Lini on Instagram Live. Alicia's great-grandfather founded the winery in 1910 and Lini 910 is celebrated for their fresh, food-friendly, and traditional dry style of Lambrusco -- the complete antithesis of those sticky sweet Lambrusco wines that flooded the market in the 1970s and 80s.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2020 at Wine With Wanda
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"Wine is a matter of personal search. People should not be shy and should go their own way. Sometimes I have friends bringing me a bottle of wine coming from another village, another region, and it's always fun to discover. Don't be shy. You don't have to be educated to appreciate wine. Listen to your feelings, your sense, your palate. Wine is not complicated. Wine is a matter of pleasure. Don't make it more complicated than it is." - Philippe Pascal, Owner, Domaine du Cellier aux Moines I must confess that I approached my recent Instagram Live chat with Philippe... Continue reading
Posted Jul 20, 2020 at Wine With Wanda