All Categories

Wine Enthusiast: How Gravity-Flow Wineries are Taking Grapes to New Heights

How Gravity-Flow Wineries are Taking Grapes to New Heights

Wine Enthusiast | By Jessica Kelly | Jan 8, 2019 | Original Article

Somewhere between industrialized winemaking and the full-on natural/no-intervention movement, there are a growing number of producers using the environment—and more importantly, gravity—to refine their winemaking technique. Many believe that removing pumps or motors from the winemaking process preserves better fragrance and flavor. Some wineries have even gone so far as to build their facilities underground or on sloped land to bypass machinery and let gravity better work its magic.

Recipes from Napa: Carbonada Stew

Winter is here and we have settled into a cozy cycle of drizzle, and fog in Napa. I cherish quiet winter evenings with the fireplace going and the family is tucked indoors for the evening. On these nights I like to prepare comfort foods: stews, chilis, and roasts. One stew that is a favorite in our house is the Argentine Classic Carbonada. Traditionally in the winter, it is served inside a pumpkin and is the perfect dish to use any left over fall pumpkins.

Robb Report: Wine Wonder

GENIUS at Work: Wine Wonder

Robb Report | By Janice O’Leary | December 2018 Issue

Growing up on his family’s vineyard in Napa Valley, Christian Palmaz knew exactly what he wanted to be: a winemaker.  But after apprenticing, he learned he couldn’t quite read the wines the way a winemaker should.  But that didn’t stop him from wanting to help make a great wine.  He turned to his other passion instead, computer science.  –continue reading below–

State of the Art Vision Sorting System

State of the Art Vision Sorting System | by Christian Palmaz

The 2018 Vintage marks a breakthrough for Palmaz Vineyard’s grape sorting capability.  In 2003 we developed a unique 3-axis vibratory conveyor that aided our team of sorters to visually identify and remove any deficient berries.  Quite the tedious task, at the time this was the penultimate method for ensuring only the best fruit made it to the fermenter.  However after several hours, even the most fastidious succumb to quality affecting fatigue.  Finally technology has caught up with the capabilities of human dexterity and visual comprehension.

First Shipments of the Ranch Subscription are On the Way!

First Shipment of the Ranch Subscription ARE going out today!

All of us at the Brasas Food and Wine Society are very excited to see the Fed Ex truck arrive and take away our first shipments of our 100% grass-fed wagyu beef raised on the ranch. The first 131 customers will be receiving their shipments in the next few days. 

2018 Harvest Tracker

2018 Harvest Tracker | By Christian Palmaz

It’s a bit strange to celebrate a harvest partially because you made it to the end without a natural disaster.  Following a challenging 2017, the 2018 vintage has given us much to be thankful.  Besides an excellent long growing season and moderate temperatures, 2018 has been the season of slow development — dare I say, a return to a normal pace.  Harvest began exactly 8 days later than last year.  Beginning with lower elevation whites, parcels came in with a predictable order and cadence.

Synology: Blending Art and Technology

Synology: Palmaz Vineyards – Blending Art and Technology

Palmaz Vineyards is a family-owned Napa Valley winery that is entirely encompassed inside Mount George. Unique to Palmaz is its own propriety ML software developed by Christian Palmaz, CEO. FILCS (pronounced “Felix”), stands for Fermentation Intelligence Logic Control System. It gives insight on fermentation by measuring variables in the process, then adjusts the temperature and rate of fermentation as needed. Another system, VIGOR, or Vineyard Infrared Growth Optical Recognition, monitors the health of the vineyard and adjusts irrigation accordingly throughout the growing season.

Brasas Members Sail the Mediterranean

Brasas Members Sail the MEDITERRANEAN | By Florencia Palmaz | Sep 13, 2018

Fall is almost upon us and harvest just around the corner. But before I dive head deep into the season, I am compelled to reflect on this summer. Last moth I had the good fortune of accompanying a small group of Brasas wine club members on a Mediterranean cruise. I never expected the trip to be so memorable, joyful and of course delicious. We were a group of 36 who became the envy of the cruise ship. Known on the board as those “winery kids” we proceeded to stage a gourmand’s mutiny. Each each port more inspiring than the next, and dinner more festive than the one before. Over the course of 16 days the group bonded together. Between decadent afternoons over pasta in Venice, Limoncello in Amalfi, and bottomless bowls of bouillabaisse by the French seaside we laughed and inspired each other.

The primary goal of the trip was to learn about the wines of the regions. We sipped our way across the coastline of Spain, France, Monaco, Italy, Montenegro, Croatia, and Slovenia. We began on the hallowed ground of Bandol sipping ethereal Rosés. Then we immersed ourselves into depths of Primitivo, and the Roman history of Italian coastal wines.  Finally, we celebrated our good fortune with the Slovenia’s latest unfiltered sparkling wine that literally explodes!

Forbes: Alcohol and Balance

Wines Of The Week: Alcohol And Balance

Forbes | By Brian Freedman | Aug 24, 2018 | Original Article

Discussions of alcohol levels in wine are analogous to the third rail of train tracks: Often dangerous to even approach, and it should only be done with extreme caution. This is because everyone, it seems, has an opinion about what constitutes an “appropriate” amount of alcohol. It makes sense: The abv in a bottle has a huge impact on the balance of the wine, the flavor profile, the texture, the ways in which it interacts with food, and more. Strong opinions, on either side of the proverbial aisle, are justified, and I find plenty of merit in both.

But as with all deeply held convictions, it’s far too easy for logical argument to devolve into orthodoxy, when the reality is that there are plenty of great wines that don’t have all that much alcohol (the Kutch Bohan Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016, for example, clocks in at 11.3% abv, and it’s magnificent, with copious red fruit, Indian spice, and roses leaving a lasting impression long after the wine has been finished) and just as many that have higher levels (the Faust Limited Release “Graffiti Edition” Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, which comes in magnum and boasts 14.9% alcohol, is balanced and assertive all at once, with chocolate, cedar, blueberry cobbler, cassis, and cigar tobacco). They are verydifferent wines, but I find a ton of pleasure in both.

Palm Beach Illustrated: Chardonnay 2.0

Chardonnay 2.0

Palm Beach Illustrated | By Mark Spivak | Aug 22, 2018 | Original Article

American Chardonnay has gotten a bad rap—not without cause, in many cases. For a decade or more, beginning in the 1990s, it was impossible for them to be buttery enough, creamy enough or ripe enough. Sugar levels were staggering almost across the board. Returning from a trip to Germany in 1998, I was startled to find that many domestic Chardonnays were sweeter than the Rieslings I had been drinking in the Mosel and Rhine.