Trump Winery 2008 Blanc de Noirs Named in Top 10 US Sparkling Wines by

Dec 12


In preparation for the holidays, set out to find the best sparkling wines in the United States.  In their findings, Trump Winery’s

2008 Blanc de Noirs was named in their list of Top Ten American sparkling wines. is an online guide to dining, hotels, travel and lifestyle for readers in search of the best across the world.

The 2008 Blanc de Noir is made via Méthode Champenoise with 100% Pinot Noir grapes. After a combination of stainless steel and French oak barrel aging, the wine gains complexity by aging on the lees in the bottle for a minimum of 3 years.  At disgorging, a low dosage is added to balance acidity and improve mouth feel.  The wine exhibits savory flavors of toast, coffee, caramel and honey with a background of lemon and malt. rated the Kluge SP Rose 2008 methode champenoise in their top ten picks for Thanksgiving in 2011, after the winery was acquired by Donald Trump.

For the methodology of their ratings, according to Barnaby Hughes of, most wines are tasted by Alain Gayot, the publisher, who assigns ratings and makes the final selection for each top ten list. “How do we choose what goes on the list? It largely depends on what samples we receive. Wines are also chosen for high ratings and with an eye towards variety. Thus, Trump is one of the best sparkling wine producers we’ve come across outside of California that is willing to send samples.” He adds that wines are not tasted blind.


Paschina, Morton Named to V&WM’s “20 Most Admired People” List

Dec 06

Luca Paschina, General Manager and Winemaker of Barboursville Vineyards, and Lucie   Morton, a longtime viticulture consultant based in Virginia, were two Virginians among a total list of 20 people named in Vineyard & Winery Management (V&WM) magazine’s “20 Most Admired People in the North American Wine Industry.” 

 Speaking about the recognition Governor McDonnell said, “I’m pleased to learn about this new significant milestone forVirginia’s wine industry and the personal recognition for Luca and Lucie.  It’s been a privilege to have worked with Luca and Lucie during the last four years, and I am grateful for all they have done to help elevate the Virginia wine industry both nationally and internationally.”

Correction on Review of Cattell Book on Wines of Eastern N. America

Dec 02

On November 24th this site printed a review on the upcoming new reference work by Hudson Cattell titled Wines of Eastern North America Post-Prohibition to the Present. I stated that the book had no index, but in fact it does. Combined with appendicies, chapter notes, and a bibliography, this makes the book a valuable reference work on the subject. My apologies to the author for this mistake.

Virginia Wine Increasingly Trendy, Cited in Recent Articles

Dec 02

On November 24th, the Washington Post magazine printed a cover story 12-page article by Dana Milbank, a political columnist for the newspaper, titled “Virginia’s Wine Renaissance” (disclosure: Milbank referenced Beyond Jefferson’s Vines by this author as a source).

“Here in the Mid-Atlantic, a petite Bordeaux is taking place,” he remarks, while at the same time noting that “independent experts I spoke to generally agree that many Virginia wineries are still making wine that ranges from unremarkable to unpleasant.” He focuses the article, and his interviews, on the top 20 wineries in the state (by his own reckoning).

Interviews include Rutger de Vink of RdV Vineyards, Jim Dolphin of Delaplane Cellars, Jeff White of Glen Manor Vineyards, and the sommelier of the Inn at Little Washington, Jennifer Knowles.  The article also has an impressive variety of photos. Read the complete article online at:

Meanwhile, on Dec. 1st the Daily News of New York published an article titled “Virginia Is Making A Name For Itself As A Wine Destination” by Alex Palmer. The story mentions wineries across the state but focuses on those in the Hampton Roads/Tidewater region, and points out the link with Virginia heritage demonstrated by wineries like New Kent (use of heirloom building materials) and Philip Carter Winery (alluding to the first documentation of successful Virginia viticulture in 1762).

The article also explores the link between local food and wine, as with the Dog and Oyster winery on the southern end of the Northern Neck, and the rise in aquaculture in the Chesapeake Bay. You can read more at: