Wilfred Wong, Cellar Master for BevMo, a California and Arizona chain of 130 stores, is a wine industry veteran of more than 40 years. He currently tastes between 6,000 to 9,000 wines annually and judges in a dozen major wine competitions each year. His job duties include managing the content and blogging on BevMo.com for the retail chain, which includes keeping current on 3,000+ wines, 1,200 spirits, and 800 beers, and working the company’s Vineyard Partners program in which he works with winemaking teams worldwide on blends that make up the wines. Wong works closely with the wine-merchandising department and travels four to seven times a year to France, Italy, Spain, Chile, Argentina and other port of calls in searching for new and exciting wine discoveries. On the media side, he writes for the Tasting Panel Magazine as well as other publications.
Our own Amy Gross was fortunate to meet up with Wilfred at the Wine Bloggers Conference in Portland last summer where she noticed that he not only knows wine, but was also fascinating to talk with and shoots some amazing photographs.
Wilfred’s 5 Wines to Enjoy:
One white wine under $20 and widely available in the US:
- 2011 Chateau Ste Michelle CHARDONNAY Indian Wells (COLUMBIA VALLEY) ($18)
Delivers superb flavors at this price point, the 2011 Chateau Ste Michelle Indian Wells Chardonnay offers plenty of ripe core fruit flavors and a hint of sweet oak. Chateau Ste. Michelle, one of America’s great wineries, offers consumers a superb range of fine wines.
One red wine under $20 and widely available in the US:
- 2010 Rosemount Estate Diamond Label SHIRAZ (SOUTH EASTERN AUSTRALIA) ($15)
The Aussies want a way back into the marketplace, this wine is the ticket. The 2010 Rosemount Diamond Series Shiraz is full of gorgeous ripe fruit flavors; long and satisfying in the finish.
One splurge (whatever splurge might mean to you):
- 2010 TeHo MALBEC (ALTAMIRA) ($100)
This is one of the world’s “coolest” winery teams. Co-winemakers, co-owners Alejandro “Colo” Sejanovich and Jeff Mausbach are incredibly intent on making the finest wines period! The 2010 TeHo Malbec is seriously good! Powerful and expressive, one of the top red wines in the world!
…and two others of his own choosing (these may be either easy or hard to find):
- 2010 Klinker Brick Winery OLD VINE ZINFANDEL (LODI) ($22.50)
A magnificent zin, the 2010 Klinker Brick Old Vine Zinfandel shows power and finesse on the palate; explodes with beaucoup berries; great finish. This is one of Lodi’s top producers.
- 2008 Twomey MERLOT (NAPA VALLEY) ($48)
Twomey Cellars is starting to make a name for itself as a top Merlot producer. The 2010 Twomey Merlot is packed and firm; shows ripe fruit and sweet oak; finishes firm and long.
Have you enjoyed any of these wines? Do any sound interesting to you? Tell us what you think…
Looking for more suggestions? Check out the VineSleuth 5 Wines to Enjoy archives.
Would you like to share your 5 Wines to Enjoy on Vinesleuth Uncorked? I’d love to hear from you. Drop me a note and we’ll talk.