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Monthly Archives: June 2017

Review: Franc Dusak Viognier Sonoma Valley 2016

​Franc Dusak has been one of my favorite winemakers for some time, and he continues to impress. Under the umbrella of NakedWines.com, Franc produces excellent wines from a number of different varieties of grape, and some out-of-this-world blends, too. One of my favorite wines in his portfolio is his Viognier. I’ve reviewed Franc’s Viognier before; the 2015 vintage. I recently acquired a bottle of his 2016 vintage, and I was so impressed I simply had to share about it!

Franc Dusak Viognier 2016

Sporting a brand new label design, Franc’s Viognier Sonoma Valley 2016 is just as enticing, refreshing, and delicious as 2015…maybe more so! Franc reaffirms my newfound love for Viognier with this creation. In addition to being tasty and satisfying on a hot, late-spring day, it is quite versatile with food pairing and makes a terrific addition to a variety of dishes.

Currently the Head Winemaker for NakesWines.com, Franc is a third generation winemaker. The family hails from Slovenia, and Franc honors his family heritage and the original family winery on the label. In Franc’s Instagram and Facebook posts announcing the release of the 2016 Viognier, he explains:

“The new logo pays homage to the winemakers in my family and my Slovenia heritage. DVK represents Dusak Vinska Klet, which is our original family wine cellar. The mountain in the background of the logo is Triglav, (three heads) which has several meanings, but mostly refers to the impact my grandfather, uncle and father had on my wine journey.”

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Today we released my 2016 Sonoma Valley Viognier with my new label! This label really encompasses everything I have wanted and worked for since I started this journey so many years ago! The new logo pays homage to the winemakers in my family and my Slovenia heritage. DVK represents Dusak Vinska Klet, which is our original family wine cellar. The mountain in the background of the logo is Triglav, (three heads) which has several meanings, but mostly refers to the impact my grandfather, uncle and father had on my wine journey. I hope you all get a chance to try the new wine! Thanks for all your support and helping me to make this dream happen! Cheers! #francdusakwines #nakedwines #sonomavalley #viognier Photo Cred @anid13

A post shared by Franc Dusak (@francdusakwines) on

I contacted Franc via Instagram chat, and asked him about his vision as a third-generation winemaker. Here’s what he said:

Franc Dusak

Photo Credit: NakedWines.com

“I think the most important thing for me is that I carry on the tradition of winemaking in my family. I make wine to enjoy and share with your family and friends. I am pleased when enthusiasts see the passion that I put into my wines, but my hope is that everyone can enjoy them. There is so much work and thought that goes into each wine, hopefully those who taste them can feel that.”

Personally, I clearly see the passion in Franc’s wines. Here’s my review of this amazing Viognier. I’ll be buying a case of this to get me through the long, hot summer!

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Another Franc Dusak hit! Franc’s Viognier is always delicious and this vintage is no exception.

Golden straw color. Aromas of nectarine and honeysuckle. This wine is florally aromatic; it smells so delightful it could be perfume. On the palate, flavors of nectarine and peach, elderflower, pear, and floral notes. Started well chilled, as it warmed some apricot started to emerge. With a round mouthfeel, tangy acidity, and medium body, this is a great wine for food. We had it with grilled miso shrimp and asparagus, with spinach salad and it was amazing!

Make no mistake: this is not a “sweet” wine. It is fruit forward and floral, which may be perceived as sweetness. But it is a dry, delicious white wine. Franc, I tip my hat to you, sir!

Available exclusively from NakedWines.com.

Angel Price $12.99

This wine is still available from NakedWines.com. If you aren’t already a NakedWines.com Angelclick here, or the banner below, for a voucher worth $100 off your first order of $160 or more! You’ll be glad you did!

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Monthly Wine Writing Challenge #33–The Results

I am truly and deeply honored to have won this month’s challenge. This is my first time winning the MWWC, and I appreciate everyone who read and enjoyed my entry, and who voted for me. Thank you!

the drunken cyclist

The results are in

Well, for the first time in what seems like a long time, I am announcing the winner of the Monthly Wine Writing Challenge by pounding away at my desktop keyboard and not sitting in a hotel bed in a far-flung wine region. Why is that important? It isn’t. Not even slightly, but I feel the need to fill this space with some sort of drivel so that I can justify being the curator (is that what I am?) of this writing challenge.

This was a strange month by a few measures. First, there were only eight entries, the second lowest amount since the Challenge began over three years ago (and we only got to eight after I extended the deadline by a week). On top of that, the number of votes cast to determine the winner was the lowest total since I took over the full-time administration of the Challenge…

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Once Upon a Time #MWWC33

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Once upon a time, there was a charming prince who lived in an enchanted land. Yes, I know. Fairy tales are supposed to be about princesses. This is an equal opportunity story.

Monthly Wine Writing Challenge

Anyway, there was this charming prince, living in an enchanted land. When he was young, each day he would ride about the kingdom, enjoying the beauty and wonder around him. He and his friends were well known for their kindness, as well as their laughter. To be sure, the prince had his mischievous side, playing practical jokes on friends and strangers alike. Always harmless jokes, though. There’s no charm in being hurtful.

As the prince grew older, his roaming expanded and he began exploring and experiencing surrounding kingdoms. One day, he entered a neighboring land where the people were demure and quiet. The prince wondered what was wrong. As he inquired and spoke with the people of the land, he learned that there was a Fun-Sucking Dragon terrorizing the land. The prince discovered that before the Fun-Sucking Dragon’s arrival, the people were just as happy as the citizens in his land. However, the Fun-Sucking Dragon imposed upon the people a law preventing anything fun. No singing, no dancing, no running, no galloping horses, and worst of all, no wine! No wonder the people of this land were sad!

Dragon

Some of the people were actually sympathetic to the Fun-Sucking Dragon, and took pleasure in seeing the quiet and melancholy that descended upon the land. Not that these people were mean, or possessed ill intent. They actually believed that temperance in all things, imposed by this prohibition on fun, was healthy and good; that the people would live healthier, safer, more productive lives. Admittedly, before the prohibition, some of the people did overindulge in fun, and would hurt themselves or miss work. Nevertheless, those people were in the minority. Most of the fun-lovers engaged with moderation, and felt the fun enhanced their quality of life. The prince didn’t think it didn’t seem fair that the entire land should be penalized for the actions of the few people who lacked self-control. So he set about trying to find a way to defeat the Fun-Sucking Dragon.

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The prince learned that, despite the best motivations of the temperance groups, the prohibition on fun had unintended consequences. The loss of jobs in the entertainment and libation industries created a financial burden in the land. In addition, many people missed having fun, so they would gather in secret; singing, dancing, and drinking wine and other banned drinks. This resulted in a rise in criminal activity, as unscrupulous people took control of these hidden locations, and demanded money to keep quiet and not turn in the fun-lovers. And clearly, all the otherwise honest and law abiding citizens who engaged in illicit fun were now, themselves, criminals!

The prince organized a group of brave citizens to battle the Fun-Sucking Dragon. The fight lasted several years, and there were many casualties on both sides. Finally, the Fun-Sucking Dragon surrendered and repealed the law prohibiting fun. The people rejoiced, and fun and happiness once again reigned in the land.  Mostly.

Dragon Surrender

Despite the victory, the Fun-Sucking Dragon had only surrendered. The prince was unable to slay him entirely. There have been long-lasting effects of the fun prohibition, even to this day. On the one hand, the people became more aware of the risks of overindulging in fun, so this is seen as a positive. Yet nearly 100 years later, there are still residual impediments to fun in the land. Some parts of the country retained portions of the archaic law, making it difficult for the citizens in those regions to engage in as much fun as others.

The prince was happy that he could restore fun and happiness to his neighbors, but knew there was still much more work to do. Slowly, the prince’s influence continues to remove barriers to fun. The fun-lovers in the land are hopeful that one day, all the people will be permitted to engage in all the fun activities equally.

And there will be much rejoicing.

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This is a work of fiction. All characters are made up and any resemblance to actual people or dragons is purely coincidental. It is also my entry into this month’s Monthly Wine Writing Challenge (#MWWC33), the theme of which is “Once Upon a Time” as selected by last month’s winner, Mel of Wining with Mel. No dragons were harmed in the writing of this blog post.