Friday, July 22, 2011

Sierra Foothill Wines: a Great Feature at Charity Event in Reno

Photo Courtesy of Atlantic Casino
 There are more than 7600 bonded wineries in the USA, and more than 3300 in California alone. So it is no surprise that I run into many wines from wineries that are new to me. I have to give credit to the organizers of the recent Toast and Taste of Summer event held at the Atlantis Casino Report Spa in Reno for finding 58 very compelling wineries to include in this interesting tasting event.

The function was a fundraiser for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and featured gourmet food pairings from 17 restaurants including Lake Tahoe’s Sunnyside Resort, Wild River Grille, and Wolfdale’s, and also the new Campo soon to open in downtown Reno under the guidance of Mark Estee, executive chef at Moody’s in Truckee.

Among the wines I tasted was the Mt. Vernon Vineyard, Auburn (Placer County, Sierra Foothills,  Cuvee Blanc, a 50/50 blend of Viognier and Roussane. This wine, just released, was cold fermented with its own indigenous wild yeast for 32 days. This is a field blend created by winemaker Ryan Taylor. Aroma of honeysuckle, a crispness and a creamy finish characterized this wine. Only 240 cases made. 13.9% alcohol, $25/bottle.

Frogs Tooth Vineyards, Murphys (Calaveras County, Sierra Foothills), poured their flagship wine, the 2009 Pinot Grigio. It’s a perfect summer wine: it is delicate and fragrant, a bit floral, a flavor of lemon, and is a nice rich, round full-bodied white wine. 14.5% alcohol. $16/bottle.

The Atlantis Casino Resort Spa is located at 3800 S. Virginia St. Reno, NV 89502. It features the Atlantis Steakhouse, an upscale dining restaurant with a wonderful wine list. Open Wednesday to Sunday, 5PM to 10PM. Reservations call 775.824.4430

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International is dedicated to finding a cure for type 1 diabetes and its complications. For more information, go to

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© 2011 Barbara Keck

For more information on dining and the wide range of activities around Lake Tahoe, see the online version of The Tahoe Weekly. This article appeared in my column "Wine Adventures" in July 2011.

Book in Process: "Mountain High Wine: The Sierra and Its Foothills".

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