Skip to content


Tor Kenward

Robb Report: The Man Who Helped Turn Napa Valley Into a Premier Culinary Destination Is Still Making Some of Its Best Wine

When origin stories of wine regions are discussed, it’s usually in the context of ancient or distant history, such as colonization by the Romans or vineyards planted by Cistercian monks. However, in the case of Napa Valley, whose grape-growing history extends back to 1839, one of the pioneers of the current tourism, hospitality, and culinary landscape is not only still on the scene but is making coveted, age-worthy wines from some of the valley’s finest vineyards. Napa icon Tor Kenward is known for the high-scoring wines he and his wife, Susan, produce alongside winemaker Jeff Ames at their Tor Napa Valley winery, which they established in 2001. Tor’s 2018 vintage received seven 100-point scores, five 99-point scores and ten 98-point scores, including four 100-point scores from different scoring publications for Tor 2018 Napa Valley Black Magic, a Cabernet Sauvignon-dominant blend.

Read Article »
TOR Cuvee Torchiana

Robb Report: The 9 Best Napa Valley Chardonnays to Drink This Summer

Grapes for this fascinating Chardonnay are grown in a single three-acre vineyard that produces clusters much smaller than average, but the winemaking team feels that they make dense and rich wines because of the high skin to juice ratio. The team maintains that this produces “wines with structure wrapped around a core of dense fruit.” We couldn’t agree more—the wine is bright gold in color with intense aromas of white citrus blossom, white peach, and dried dandelion. It is full bodied with flavors of lemon curd, egg custard flan, and toasted hazelnut with a persistent velvety finish. Drink now or lay down for three to five years. 

Read Article »

Robb Report: 9 Outstanding Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignons to Buy Right Now

Henry and Vanessa Cornell purchased 240 acres of land tucked away in the Mayacamas Mountains and planted 20 acres of vines. They hired Francoise Peschon and Elizabeth Tangney as winemakers and in 2015 invited the winemaking team, vineyard crew, and their families to live on the property year-round. Their 2018 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon is composed of 98 percent Cabernet Sauvignon with one percent each of Petit Verdot and Malbec. It is aged for 20 months in 62 percent new French oak barrels. The wine has alluring aromas of cassis, purple flowers, and black plum with flavors of dried cherry, vanilla, and mocha. It has bold tannins and a touch of Indian Curry powder in the finish.

Read Article »
Memento Mori's new Calistoga Estate

Wine Spectator: Memento Mori Purchases Calistoga Estate

The 17-acre property on Azalea Springs Way, at the base of Diamond Mountain and a neighbor to Checkerboard Vineyards, was formerly owned by Norman and Norah Stone, a wealthy San Francisco–based couple with a prominent art collection. The property dates to the 1880s and had been purchased by the Stones in 1991. They renovated the two original houses on the site and put in vines by 2001. The 2020 wildfires took one of the houses, but the second still stands. Also on the property is a 5,750-square-foot hydro-heated cave built specifically to house fine art.

Read Article »

Wine Enthusiast: Why Grower Champagne Should Be on Your Radar

Paul Launois Composition Brut Nature NV –
Structured, yet expansive on the palate with pronounced orchard fruits of fresh Bosc pear skin, lemon verbena, mandarin orange oil, a vein of dried pineapple, hibiscus petals, salted fresh almonds and fresh brioche. There’s also a cut of acidity and firm chalky mineral finish that is electrifyingly refreshing and carries through its fine perlage. Cellar or enjoy it now with gently braised proteins and rich firm fish with a creamy herb sauce.

Read Article »

Decanter: Cornell Vineyards

“After more than a decade of experimentation, planting and zeroing in on their distinct Sonoma style, Henry and Vanessa Cornell released their first commercial wine in 2013. Today, their classically styled Spring Mountain Cabernets are firmly ensconced in California’s top tier.”

Read Article »

Forbes: Memento Mori And Realm Cellars: Two Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon Stars

“This is the story of two highly successful standouts, both of which excel with Cabernet Sauvignon yet come at it from different angles. Taken together, they showcase the fantastically high levels of quality and depths of profundity that America’s most famous region is known for… Memento Mori was founded in 2010 by Hayes Drumwright, Adriel Lares, and Adam Craun. The name, which translates from the Latin as “remember that you will die” or, alternatively, “remember you must die,” is a reminder to the three partners that success is about leaving it all on the proverbial field, and working to succeed no matter what the challenges.”

Read Article »