Modern6 copy

Vinous Table: Pizza and The Original Hamburger in New Haven, CT

Vinous Table

Josh Raynolds, Nov 2020

I was recently passing through New Haven, outside the always hectic lunch and dinner hours, so made the not-difficult call to stop in Modern and also to swing into Louis’ Lunch, founded in 1895 and home of what many historians believe is the world’s original hamburger. As usual, both quick snacks were sublime, both for the food and the atmosphere.

Crabtowne sandwich2copy2

Vinous Table: Crabtowne USA, Glen Burnie, MD

Vinous Table

Josh Raynolds, Oct 2020

Readers visiting the D.C. or Baltimore area who love seafood and tradition owe it to themselves to hit a Maryland crab house or two. It’s a unique, timeless and comforting experience that I try to enjoy as often as possible.

Slh cover

2018 Santa Lucia Highlands: What a Difference a Year Makes

United States: California, featured

Josh Raynolds, Oct 2020

Following the epically hot 2017 vintage, Mother Nature paid Santa Lucia Highlands growers and winemakers back, with interest, by delivering a picture perfect season and an abundant crop of healthy grapes in 2018. The wines feature distinct energy and fine definition, with expressive fruit, well-integrated tannins for the red wines and relatively uncommon nerviness for the whites.

1966 dow's port 2copy

Cellar Favorite: 1966 Dow’s Vintage Port

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, Portugal

Josh Raynolds, Oct 2020

The vintage Ports of 1966, despite their extremely high quality, have and probably always will live in the shade of the monumental 1963s, which is great news for consumers.

Cf october192020 (1)

Cellar Favorite: 2001 Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Hommage à Jacques Perrin Grande Cuvée

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, Oct 2020

Two thousand and one is, without a doubt, one of this generation’s greatest vintages for France’s southern Rhône valley, producing an abundance of rich but balanced and ageworthy wines that are now either in their prime or entering it.

Some of oregon's finest and most graceful chardonnays are grown in the compact ribbon ridge ava  which lies within the chehalem mountains appellationcopy

Oregon Outside the Pinot Noir Box

United States: Oregon, featured

Josh Raynolds, Sep 2020

For many wine lovers, Oregon, and especially the Willamette Valley, is all Pinot Noir, all the time. Perhaps no other region in the New World is so closely associated with a single variety. And yet there’s so much more happening here, especially with Chardonnay. White wine and reds not made from Pinot Noir are approaching almost half of our annual Oregon coverage, which is a remarkable development over the last decade.

Brian and jill o'donnell's belle pente vineyard  in yamhill carlton  has produced some of the willamette vallley's most graceful pinot noirs since 1996.covervopy

Oregon Pinot Noir: The Winning Streak Continues

United States: Oregon, featured

Josh Raynolds, Jul 2020

Oregon’s unprecedented run of outstanding vintages which began in 2014, has been extended yet again with 2018. In fact, you have to go all the way back to 2011 and 2007 to find years that were truly challenging, and both of those vintages actually produced a large number of outstanding wines.

2020rose5 covercopy

2020 Rosé-a-Rama

Rest of the World, France, featured

Josh Raynolds, Jun 2020

The Rosé season has started, but definitely not at the frenetic pace of the last several years. The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has put a damper on demand for all wines. Even the ever-popular pink versions aren’t immune to market realities. That said, the best 2019 Rosés are generous, soft and versatile at the dinner table.

Saint michel sur rho%cc%82ne is home to both top vineyards and some of the region's best cellars copy

Exploring Northern Rhône Whites

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, May 2020

The hot growing conditions that defined the 2017, 2018 and 2019 vintages in the Northern Rhône show in the white wines, but the best examples also offer a good bit of energy to counterbalance their richness and ripeness. Simply put, the whites here have never been better, while the top bottlings are easily some of the world’s finest wines.

Some of the most complex and age worthy wines in the world come from the granitic soils of the hermitage hill copy

Northern Rhône: A First Look at the 2019s

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, May 2020

While my late-winter visit to the northern Rhône focused primarily on tasting the 2017s and bottled 2018s, I also had a chance to try a good number of 2019s. Like 2018, 2019 was a hot and dry year, but the wines look extremely promising and show an uncanny blend of depth and vivacity.