“Let me tell you a story,” Carolyn Wente said. And as the fourth generation and CEO of Wente Vineyards, California’s oldest continuously operated, family-owned winery, she had many stories to tell. So did her nephew, fifth-generation Karl Wente, winemaker and senior vice president of winemaking. Their story began in 1883 when Carl H. Wente planted a few acres of grapes in Livermore Valley. Today, Wente owns 3,000 acres of vineyards in Livermore Valley, San Francisco Bay and Arroyo Seco in Monterey and produces 600,000 cases of wine annually, about 25 percent of them sold overseas, in 50 countries.
Over the years, Wente garnered a host of accomplishments. One is the Wente Chardonnay clone. Developed by the Wentes from Burgundy and California sources, it is the most planted Chardonnay clone in the state and has produced many award-winning wines. Wente was also the first to label California wines for the grape variety used to make the wine rather than for European regions. And Wente still offers some of the state’s best bargains — remarkable wines at affordable prices.
Take Morning Fog Chardonnay 2012 ($15). A rich, flavorful wine with a silky texture and sprightly acidity, it evokes layers of fruit with a hint of vanilla from its oak aging and offers a medium-long aftertaste. Riva Ranch Chardonnay 2012 ($19–22), from Wente’s Arroyo Seco vineyard, is round, ripe and beguiling. It shows excellent balance, rich fruitiness, good acidity and a touch of vanilla.
With vineyards in different climatic regions, Wente can produce grapes that command a variety of growing conditions. Arroyo Seco’s long, cool growing season, for example, is a welcoming setting for Pinot Noir, as demonstrated in Wente’s Reliz Creek 2010 ($22). It shows Pinot Noir’s traditional softer color and an aroma that blends cherries and berries, a medium body and an intriguing finish.
Merlot 2008 ($65) from The Nth Degree, Wente’s limited-production wines, is vibrant with a combination of fruits and toast in its flavors; a touch of tannin; and a long, satisfying finish.
Southern Hills Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 ($16–20), with 17 percent Petit Verdot and Petite Sirah, combines hints of currants, tea and spice to make a subtle, medium-bodied, focused and enviably priced wine.
With more young Wentes in the waiting, the winery can easily hit its 200th birthday.
United Airlines announces a number of new routes.
Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.
Starting in November, guests at Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru enjoy new all-pool water villas that offer twice as much outside space as indoor space. The villa expansions bring outdoor space to nearly 2,000 square feet across multiple “zones,” including sun decks, social spots, over-water hammocks, al fresco showers and dining areas. A 40-foot pool extends into the lagoon; nearby, a shaded, ocean-side living and dining pavilion offers unparalleled views.
TAP Air Portugal is adding 15 new weekly flights from the United States and Canada by summer 2020, a new record for the carrier of 71 weekly flights between North America and Portugal.
Even if you are not familiar with Chicago, you may already know the Wicker Park neighborhood is one of the city’s “eat like a local” destinations, especially among young professionals whose idea of local is actually quite global. After a decade of high-concept comfort food and gastro-pubs, the Tan family took over a homey space on North Avenue to mix things up with the opening of Cebu. Cebu is not just a Filipino restaurant, but one focused on Cebuano regional cooking along with its Chinese and Spanish underpinnings.