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Faustini Wines Blog

Welcome to the Faustini Wines blog. Here you will find info on what's happening at the winery, our thoughts on winemaking, food, life, and wine industry news. Let us know if you want us to post on any topics.... 

You can also check out our event calendar here

Shannon Hurley
 
April 15, 2020 | Shannon Hurley

Rosé All Year

 

A crisp glass of rosé. What’s better than that on a sunshine filled spring or summer afternoon? Did you know that many rose productions are actually meant to be drunk year round and can pair with a vast majority of different cuisines? A perfect excuse for me to open one of my favorite bottle of rosé whenever I’m in the mood.

Rosé winemaking has quite the rich history. The development of rosé wine dates back to the 1700’s with the popularity of “Claret” meaning a clear or light-colored wine. This was a popular style of red Bordeaux during the 1700′s. Back then, the British were the ones who favored the pale style wines made with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Of course these days wines from Bordeaux have become gallant richer and darker, and the lovely rosé has received a well-deserved category of its very own.

The 2018 Faustini Charm and Hammer rose is made using the “Saignée method” from a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon & Malbec. This style of winemaking is capable of producing some of the longest lasting rosé wines that we see today. It is actually a by-product of red winemaking. During the fermentation of a red wine, about 10% of the free run juice is bled off. This process leaves a higher ratio of skin contact on the remaining juice, making the resulting red wine richer and bolder. The leftover bled wine or “Saignée” is then fermented into a rosé wine. Wines made from the Saignée method are typically much darker than maceration method (when the grapes are pressed and sit with their skins) wines and also much more savory.

Upon opening, the nose of the wine charms your senses with notes of fresh raspberry, summer strawberry and ripe figs. The palate is robust, warm clove and spices, ripe jammy fruits similar to that of the nose. Body is round and textured with deep complexity on the finish. I enjoy wines from this style because I think they become very versatile wines that have alot to offer which attribute to the name especially.  “Charm”, reminding each of us how beautiful and charming the wine truly is, while, “hammer” brings in an impactful sense of strength and power to the wine. Whether you’re an avid Cabernet or Merlot drinker, the Faustini Charm and Hammer rosé is definitely one that’s not to be missed.

-Shannon Hurley, Certifed Sommelier

Time Posted: Apr 15, 2020 at 8:47 AM
Shannon Hurley
 
March 31, 2020 | Shannon Hurley

Malbec, Not Just From Argentina

Malbec, the deep skinned varietal. You may think that most Malbec’s can only come from Argentina but today you will find many plantings grown all over the beautiful state of California. Not as often as consumed with its blending cousins Cabernet and Merlot, Malbec is a grape that’s not to be missed when drank on its own.

 

A little history about this amazing varietal. It’s often thought that Malbec originated in Argentina where it is widely grown but did you know Malbec actually comes from France? Many people associate Malbec with Argentina when in fact the grapes were born in the Bordeaux region of France. The main reason Malbec didn’t rise in stature in France was its susceptibility to disease and rot. In the mid-19th century, Argentinians went to France to find a grape that would bring up the quality of their wines. They came back with Malbec which has flourished in the Mendoza region of Argentina. For almost 100 years, Malbec remained an Argentinian wine. In the late 1990’s, Malbec began to be planted in parts of California and Washington State. Due to the long, arid growing season, cool nights and abundant sunshine, the Malbec’s of California are full of bright flavor and color.

 

Almost from the first harvests, California grape growers and winemakers discovered that Malbec could yield particularly stunning results. A typical Malbec is fruit-forward with flavors of dark purple fruit akin to blackberry, black cherry and huckleberry. 

 

Nestled from the prized Mueller vineyard in Carneros district of Napa Valley, the 2016 Faustini Malbec is made like no other. The grapes are harvested at the end of the growing season in late September. The grapes were hand sorted and went through a cold soak at 55 degrees to retain freshness. After a 10 day fermentation period the wine was moved to French Oak Barrels. 50 % new (for intense flavor) and 50 % neutral (for more moderate flavor). The wine aged in these barrels for 20 months prior to bottling.  With a deep garnet purple hue the 2016 Malbec brims with black plum, boysenberry and warm clove on the nose. The palate is smooth and medium bodied with lush supple tannins and bright acidity. Secondary flavors of black currant and dark chocolate dominate the palate followed by lingering notes of black pepper and all-spice.

 

What do I want to eat with this? Fire up the grill because this wine has me in the mood for a juicy burger! The burger I’m going to make actually calls for a little bit of the wine put into the meat mixture for a little extra flavor. Wait, did you say wine IN the burger? Yes I did, you’ll thank me later :). Atop the burger with some aged cheddar and braised onions, we have ourselves a trip to a steakhouse in our very own home. YUMM! Check out recipes page to see how I’ll be making this coveted wine burger, or should I say Malbec burger. Till next time oenophiles, cheers!

-Shannon Hurley, Certified Sommelier 

Time Posted: Mar 31, 2020 at 6:34 AM
Shannon Hurley
 
July 14, 2015 | Shannon Hurley

Summer Food & Wine Pairing

Although every season is a good for pairing food and wine, summer, with its lighter food offerings seems to be perfect for pairing refreshing crisp white or rosé wines.  In summer, we tend to eat lighter and simpler -- fresh garden salads, grilled vegetables, fresh fruit, and simple cheese platters.  A crisp cool wine offers a refreshing option for these lighter foods.  There is nothing better than the look of condensation on an elegant wine glass, and savoring that first cool sip of wine.  Add in a comfortable patio chair, on a boat or at the beach I think we can agree that nothing could be more relaxing!

White wines tend to have a crisper finish than reds, which leaves our palates feeling more refreshed. When we eat a food, our palate is coated with the flavors of that food.   The crisp finish on a white light bodied wine washes over our palate and intermixes with the food, creating a unique food and wine pairing experience.  If a wine is too heavy, it can overpower the flavors of the food.  So for lighter foods, a lighter wine offers that perfect combination of flavor and body. For Summer white wine drinking we recommend pairing our 2012 Beach House # 34 Sauvignon Blanc, 2013 Play Date Chardonnay and of course our Velvet & Vinyl Brut Sparkling. The Sauvignon Blanc is the lightest, perfect for any kind of grilled fish or vegetable, followed by the Chardonnay, unoaked in style it’s a great match for most light sauces and pasta dishes, last is the bubbly which is of course great anytime but also excellent with any raw bar items or sushi.

If you crave a wine with a little more fruit quality but the same crispness and food pairing quality of a white, rosés are also a great summer option.  Rosés are once again becoming a popular wine style and the offerings are far more expansive.  The Play Date Syrah Rosé is crisp and dry (almost like a light Pinot Noir in a way) and can definitely suit either a white or red drinker’s palate. Nowadays if you browse the Rose section of a wine shop will find that rosés that come from many different regions and are made from a wide variety of grapes.  Summer is a great time to explore your taste buds and try different styles of lighter wines. 

Cheers!

 

 

Time Posted: Jul 14, 2015 at 7:03 AM
Shannon Hurley
 
June 15, 2015 | Shannon Hurley

Sauvignon Blanc- The Wild White

As the weather heats up we find ourselves reaching, more often than not, for some crisp, zingy Sauvignon Blanc. It’s a perfect way to cool down and is versatile enough pair with appetizers, cheese, salads, light seafood and the like.

The name Sauvignon Blanc literally means “Wild White” and the grape is related to Traminer with origins in the South of France. Sauvignon Blanc is one of the most widely planted wine grapes in the world and because of this it has a wide range of styles and flavors. As we know the wines of Napa Valley are very complex and full bodied. The heat of the valley and the diverse soils of the region enhance the aromas and flavors of the wines. The warmth contributes to the texture and character of the wine.  Sauvignon Blanc is not grown everywhere in Napa Valley but it is grown in St Helena, Chiles Valley, Rutherford, Mt. Veeder, Oak Knoll District and Los Carneros.

Rutherford (where our Sauvignon Blanc is grown) is 50 miles north of San Francisco. The soils are composed of alluvium and marine sediment with some volcanic influence, particularly on the east side of the region. The climate is warm although there can be as much as a ten degree difference between the northern portion of Rutherford which is warmer and the southern portion.  The Elevation is about 500 feet.

The intense flavor of this Sauvignon Blanc grab’s your attention. Rutherford's Sauvignon Blanc has the classic characteristics of citrus, green apple, floral, mineral and lemon grass aromas and flavors. The 2012 vintage of Beach House #34 is possibly one of the prettiest Sauvignon Blancs that Faustini has produced. Gorgeously perfumed, the aromatics are vibrant yet delicate at the same time. The stunning white peach note is accompanied by apricot and citrus zest. The palate is very persistent, dominated by a fresh and bright entry, with a great acid pop that lingers for over a minute. Flavors of honeydew melon, lemon grass, and grapefruit all play well together to top off this wine. An endlessly long finish. 

So my wine friends after spending a long day at the beach or on the boat (or even while you’re there) kick back and relax with family and friends over a bottle of Beach House #34 Sauvignon Blanc. It’s crisp, refreshing and will sure help you create that memorable summer moment.

Till next time oneophiles…

Cheers!

 

Read more about the story behind “Beach House #34” here! http://www.faustiniwines.com/Our-Story/Beach-House-34   

Looking for a great dish to pair with this wine? Check out our featured recipe! http://www.faustiniwines.com/recipes/Beach-House-Clams

 

Time Posted: Jun 15, 2015 at 6:35 AM
Shannon Hurley
 
May 16, 2014 | Shannon Hurley

Takeoff to Napa

The Napa Valley- a term used today as a synonym for Napa County, is the best known U.S wine region in the world. For the most part Napa’s reputation has been built from the award winning Cabernet Sauvignons and of course the Bordeaux style blends. These amazing wines come from well-established big names and of course small boutique wineries like Faustini. Surprisingly enough Napa makes up only 4% in total California wine production. Don't let this number fool you! Although small in terms of grape harvest, you will see why this wine growing region keeps seasoned oneophiles coming back for more.

Back in the Early Days

Settler George Calvert Yount (for those of you who are thinking Yountville and the French Laundry you're right!) made his way to California in 1831. In 1834 he went to Sonoma, where he was employed as a carpenter by General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo. After working for Vallejo, Yount received the Rancho Caymus land grant in 1836, and became the first permanent settler in the Napa Valley. By 1838 he saw that the area had a lot of potential for growing wine grapes, and by 1839 with the help of two other pioneers, he was able to plant the first Vitis Vinifera grapes in the area. Charles Krug established Napa’s first commercial winery in 1861, which is still being operated today by his good friends the Mondavi family. Now there are more then 300 wineries in Napa to date.

Terroir  [ter-wahr]

Ideal terroir (meaning the all-inclusive physical environment of a wine growing area) is essential for making a great wine, and although Napa is one of the smallest wine growing regions, you can see that the grapes really speak for themselves. Defined by the Vaca and Mayacamas mountain ranges and influenced by its juxtaposition to the Pacific Ocean, the Napa Valley enjoys a beautiful dry Mediterranean climate (only 2% of the world has this!) perfectly suited to the growing of astonishing wine grapes. These mountains protect the Valley from the chilly air off the Pacific Ocean, and the scorching heat of the Central Valley. The Napa River runs generally north to south of the county, and helps keeps the valley cool at night. This ideal combination with the warm daytime temperature and chilly night air allows the grapes to ripen softly and in sync with one another.

Key Appellations in Napa

Napa County is one of the counties included in the North Coast AVA (American Viticultural Area) of California. Within Napa itself there are also 16 other sub AVAs. The most prestigious area of Napa Valley stretches north from the city of Napa upward which includes the Yountville, (where we source our Malbec Rosé) Stags Leap District, Oakville, Rutherford (Beach House #34 Sauvignon Blanc), St. Helena, Calistoga and Howell Mountain (Secret Veil) AVAs. This is a prime Cabernet Sauvignon growing area, and plays humble host to many of the famous American wineries and vineyards such as Silver Oak & Caymus. Below the city of Napa in the cooler part of the county, you will find the well-known Oak Knoll District and the Carneros AVA's which have ideal climates for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. These grapes are often used to make a majority of the sparkling wines produced around Napa.

 

So Where is Faustini?

Our winery is located in the Coombsville AVA. Coombsville is a quiet area, in the southeastern corner of the Napa Valley, closely situated against the foothills of the Vaca mountians (just 15 minutes outside of the city of Napa!). Most people who visit Napa generally never pass through it, or even know it exists, it's basically a hidden secret of the Valley! Yet, for anyone who has fallen in love with Napa Valley wines, or a seasoned Napa traveler who wishes to get out of the tourist area… Coombsville is an absolute MUST-SEE destination!

Here are some facts about the Coombsville AVA

Climate: Temperate climate moderated by close proximity to the San Pablo Bay and the influences of marine air.
Elevation: Most vineyards are in the 100-500 foot (30-150 m) zone, though a small portion tops 1000 feet (300 m)
Rainfall: 25 inches (65 cm) annually
Soils: Primarily weathered volcanic rock and alluvial deposits from the Vaca Range that surrounds the region
Principal varieties: Dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon on the hillsides with Merlot, Chardonnay, Syrah and Pinot Noir in the lower, cooler sites

(http://www.napavintners.com/napa_valley/appellations.asp)

As we wrap things up it's important to understand that Faustini is a winery. This means that all of our winemaking is done at our Coombsville location, and like many other wineries we too have a number of our grapes growing in not only Coombsville but other well-known parts of Napa, providing you with the ultimate tasting experience for each wine that we make. I hope you enjoyed this educational “Flight to Napa” and feel inspired to embark on a journey to visit Faustini, as well as the many other beautiful wineries and vineyards which lie in Napa County. Till next time my fellow oneophiles…Cheers!!

By, Shannon Hurley

Wine Ambassador

References

-Napavinters.com/appellations

-The Society of Wine Educators Handbook

-The Encyclopedia of Wine- Tom Stevenson

Time Posted: May 16, 2014 at 9:00 AM
Shannon Hurley
 
May 16, 2014 | Shannon Hurley

Takeoff to Napa

The Napa Valley- a term used today as a synonym for Napa County, is the best known U.S wine region in the world. For the most part Napa’s reputation has been built from the award winning Cabernet Sauvignons and of course the Bordeaux style blends. These amazing wines come from well-established big names and of course small boutique wineries like Faustini. Surprisingly enough Napa makes up only 4% in total California wine production. Don't let this number fool you! Although small in terms of grape harvest, you will see why this wine growing region keeps seasoned oneophiles coming back for more.

Back in the Early Days

Settler George Calvert Yount (for those of you who are thinking Yountville and the French Laundry you're right!) made his way to California in 1831. In 1834 he went to Sonoma, where he was employed as a carpenter by General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo. After working for Vallejo, Yount received the Rancho Caymus land grant in 1836, and became the first permanent settler in the Napa Valley. By 1838 he saw that the area had a lot of potential for growing wine grapes, and by 1839 with the help of two other pioneers, he was able to plant the first Vitis Vinifera grapes in the area. Charles Krug established Napa’s first commercial winery in 1861, which is still being operated today by his good friends the Mondavi family. Now there are more then 300 wineries in Napa to date.

Terroir  [ter-wahr]

Ideal terroir (meaning the all-inclusive physical environment of a wine growing area) is essential for making a great wine, and although Napa is one of the smallest wine growing regions, you can see that the grapes really speak for themselves. Defined by the Vaca and Mayacamas mountain ranges and influenced by its juxtaposition to the Pacific Ocean, the Napa Valley enjoys a beautiful dry Mediterranean climate (only 2% of the world has this!) perfectly suited to the growing of astonishing wine grapes. These mountains protect the Valley from the chilly air off the Pacific Ocean, and the scorching heat of the Central Valley. The Napa River runs generally north to south of the county, and helps keeps the valley cool at night. This ideal combination with the warm daytime temperature and chilly night air allows the grapes to ripen softly and in sync with one another.

Key Appellations in Napa

Napa County is one of the counties included in the North Coast AVA (American Viticultural Area) of California. Within Napa itself there are also 16 other sub AVAs. The most prestigious area of Napa Valley stretches north from the city of Napa upward which includes the Yountville, (where we source our Malbec Rosé) Stags Leap District, Oakville, Rutherford (Beach House #34 Sauvignon Blanc), St. Helena, Calistoga and Howell Mountain (Secret Veil) AVAs. This is a prime Cabernet Sauvignon growing area, and plays humble host to many of the famous American wineries and vineyards such as Silver Oak & Caymus. Below the city of Napa in the cooler part of the county, you will find the well-known Oak Knoll District and the Carneros AVA's which have ideal climates for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. These grapes are often used to make a majority of the sparkling wines produced around Napa.

 

So Where is Faustini?

Our winery is located in the Coombsville AVA. Coombsville is a quiet area, in the southeastern corner of the Napa Valley, closely situated against the foothills of the Vaca mountians (just 15 minutes outside of the city of Napa!). Most people who visit Napa generally never pass through it, or even know it exists, it's basically a hidden secret of the Valley! Yet, for anyone who has fallen in love with Napa Valley wines, or a seasoned Napa traveler who wishes to get out of the tourist area… Coombsville is an absolute MUST-SEE destination!

Here are some facts about the Coombsville AVA

Climate: Temperate climate moderated by close proximity to the San Pablo Bay and the influences of marine air.
Elevation: Most vineyards are in the 100-500 foot (30-150 m) zone, though a small portion tops 1000 feet (300 m)
Rainfall: 25 inches (65 cm) annually
Soils: Primarily weathered volcanic rock and alluvial deposits from the Vaca Range that surrounds the region
Principal varieties: Dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon on the hillsides with Merlot, Chardonnay, Syrah and Pinot Noir in the lower, cooler sites

(http://www.napavintners.com/napa_valley/appellations.asp)

As we wrap things up it's important to understand that Faustini is a winery. This means that all of our winemaking is done at our Coombsville location, and like many other wineries we too have a number of our grapes growing in not only Coombsville but other well-known parts of Napa, providing you with the ultimate tasting experience for each wine that we make. I hope you enjoyed this educational “Flight to Napa” and feel inspired to embark on a journey to visit Faustini, as well as the many other beautiful wineries and vineyards which lie in Napa County. Till next time my fellow oneophiles…Cheers!!

By, Shannon Hurley

Wine Ambassador

References

-Napavinters.com/appellations

-The Society of Wine Educators Handbook

-The Encyclopedia of Wine- Tom Stevenson

Time Posted: May 16, 2014 at 9:00 AM
Shannon Hurley
 
April 26, 2014 | Shannon Hurley

Think Pink, Drink Pink

With the warm weather in full bloom it’s time to take a break from those heartier pairings and lighten up with a refreshing take. We’re talking Rosé!

The development of Rosé wine dates back to the 1700’s with the popularity of “Claret” meaning clear or light-colored wine. This was a popular style of red Bordeaux during the 1700′s. Back then, the British were the ones who favored pale style wines made with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Of course these days Bordeaux wines have become gallant and darker, and the lovely rosé has received a category of its very own.

Today rosé has a variety of names depending on its origin. Whether you call it “Rosé” in France or America, “Rosado” in Spain, “Rosato” in Italy or simply “blush" – they all refer to some seriously pink business. The wines can typically range from a light salmon subtle hue to a vibrant magenta pink, depending on the grape used and how long the skins were in contact with the juice. Rosés can be made in three different styles off-dry, sweet, or dry the most popular style produced around the world today. There are two different ways to make Rosé. First we have “Saignee” this is the practice of “bleeding off” lightly tinted grape juice after a brief maceration process (soaking of grape skins). Since wine’s color actually comes from the skins, the longer the skins, pips and seeds remain in contact with the grape, the darker and more tannic the rosé gets. The second less common way is to simply blend white wine with a red to make it appear pink.

Think Pink, Drink Pink!

Our rosés are the perfect pairing for spring and summer, since they are served chilled and can be a refreshing garnish to any warm day. They are also extremely versatile wines and pair well with a number of different dishes.

2012 Opportunity Collection Malbec Rosé

It’s not too often that you’ll find a Malbec Rosé coming out of Napa. Although this grape has some Argentinian roots, this crisp wine is often compared to a Provence style rosé.

Aroma: Ripe cherry & peach flesh with hints of strawberry

Palate: Pink grapefruit & tart red currant flavors linger softly on the fresh finish

Food Pairing: Grilled Mahi-Mahi with bell pepper salad

2012 Play Date Syrah Rosé

This full bodied rose is beautifully layered with ripe fruit from the Coomsville AVA (American Viticultural Area) in Napa, with the overall balance to pair with just about anything.

Aroma: Cranberry, fresh watermelon & rose petal

Palate: Pomegranate & ripe black cherry with subtle cinnamon notes

Food Pairing: Sirloin burger with maple bacon, blue cheese & sweet potato fries

So wine lovers, if you are opting to try something outside of your wine box don’t be afraid! Rosé is on the rise and many people have discovered the truth behind the myth that all rosés are “sweet and girly”. Come stop by our tasting room on Broad Street in Red Bank today for a flight with our featured rosés. Till next time, Cheers!

Shannon Hurley

Wine Ambassador

Time Posted: Apr 26, 2014 at 8:38 AM
Anthony Faustini
 
January 12, 2012 | Anthony Faustini

2011 - A Year in Review at Faustini Wines

The year 2011 will always be remembered as the year we laid the foundation for our family business for the next decade. So much has changed since the beginning of the year that I thought I would do a quick review of some our changes and offer a glimpse into the future at Faustini Wines.

2011 - A Year in Review at Faustini Wines

  • Launched our new website along with wine clubs, social networking integration and onsite reviews

  • Partnered with a new fulfillment house which allows us to provide enhanced customer service for shipping orders.

  • Successfully moved our production facility that provides us the ability to grow

  • Added three new vineyard sources (two of which are certified organic)

  • Successfully launched a new wine brand at the Atlantic City Food and Wine Show - Play Date

  • Secured distribution for our wines in New York and New Jersey wine markets

  • Hired a full time winemaker to help shape the direction of our wine programs

  • Harvested and crushed our first ever vintage of Napa Valley Malbec

  • Launched our first holiday gift package with our partners 2 Chicks with Chocolate and Wine Soiree'

  • Lastly, we ended the year with a bang with our nationally televised interview on Fox Business News http://video.foxbusiness.com/v/1314987374001/turning-wine-passion-into-a-successful-business/

Now that the foundation is in place, its time to look forward. We fully expect to have our wines represented in more and more fine restaurants in NYC and NJ in 2012. We will be expanding our portfolio to include a new Cabernet Sauvignon called "1023". This is a 100% Cabernet from a certified organic fruit source in Rutherford. We also plan to expand the Play Date line of wines.

Lastly (and some might say most exciting), is the opening of our tasting room in Napa in the spring of 2012. We have been working hard on this for most of 2011 and are now ready to go. Please plan to visit us this summer and join our mailing list to be notified about our grand opening party!  

Time Posted: Jan 12, 2012 at 8:15 PM
Anthony Faustini
 
October 22, 2011 | Anthony Faustini

Cabernet Harvest Begins

We have been patiently waiting and now the day is here. Today we harvested our Cabernet Sauvignon from our certified organic vineyard source in Rutherford. More on the 2011 harvest in the weeks to come but for now, here's a sneak peak of the fruit coming in.

Time Posted: Oct 22, 2011 at 7:58 AM
Michelle Faustini
 
March 8, 2011 | Michelle Faustini

Atlantic City Food & Wine Festival 2011

The inaugural 2010 Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival was met with huge success and the 2011 Festival promises to be even larger and more prestigious. This will be the premier event of Atlantic City’s summer season with four days of events, tastings and celebrity appearances. Featuring world-renowned chefs, the festival will be held at all four Atlantic City properties: Harrah's Resort, Caesars, Showboat and Bally's. A portion of the proceeds from the festival will benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

Time Posted: Mar 8, 2011 at 8:35 PM
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