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Ruby Hill Winery
May 17, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

Five Critically Acclaimed Wines

This week, we are celebrating five new scores from Wine Enthusiast! These critics’ ratings provide a helpful guide to the delicious wines we offer here at Ruby Hill Winery. Of course, everyone has their go-to wines, but we hope this quick guide will give you confidence to explore phenomenal wines and varietals that are worth discovering!

93 points - 2020 Jewel Collection Petite Sirah

This wine is opulent with aromas of black currant, boysenberry and grilled jalapeño. The palate has flavors of blackberry, huckleberry, blood-orange zest and cardamom wrapped around vanilla cream, dark chocolate and grippy tannins. Pair with short ribs. — Tonya Pitts

A truly lustrous and rich varietal, this wine is a stunner, vintage after vintage. Our terroir is particularly well-suited to growing fantastic Petite Sirah fruit, and we spare no expense when it comes to the winemaking techniques applied to our Jewel Collection series. Enjoy this saturated and elegant wine today!

92 points - 2021 Jewel Collection Petit Verdot

This wine is dense, concentrated with aromas of spiced blackberry, boysenberry, florals and cloves. The midpalate has flavors of blueberry, cardamom spice and grilled blood-orange zest intertwined with sedimentary rock, dried tobacco leaf, spicy chocolate and a dry, mouthwatering finish. Pair with marinated tri-tip. — Tonya Pitts

Another standout from our Jewel Collection, this distinctive varietal is deserving of attention and acclaim. A full-bodied classic Bordeaux grape, it is rare to find Petit Verdot bottled on its own, but we are proud to shine a spotlight on this varietal. In addition to this score from Wine Enthusiast, this wine won Double Gold in the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. 

91 points and “Best Buy” - 2021 Grapeful Red

This wine is opulent with aromas of blackberry pie, clove, black licorice and potpourri. The palate offers blackberry, cinnamon, vanilla cream and orange blossom honey that slip into tobacco leaf, spicy chocolate and a dry, silky finish. Pair with sausage pizza. — Tonya Pitts

Our classic Grapeful Red is a playful and pleasing red blend you can always rely on. This vintage is particularly excellent, and at $19 per bottle, it has earned the “Best Buy” designation from Wine Enthusiast. Embrace the tie-dye and let the good wine flow!

90 points - 2020 Sangiovese

This wine is supple, fresh with aromas of Bing cherry, raspberry, dried florals and earth. The midpalate has flavors of cranberry, red licorice and chicory rounded out with bittersweet chocolate and a dry finish. Pair with pork loin. — Tonya Pitts

Faithful to its roots as an everyday-drinking Italian varietal, this keen and bright Sangiovese pairs with all of your favorite weeknight dinners. As a delicious bonus, it brings high-quality aromas and flavors so you can enjoy the sense of a fine wine without breaking the bank. 

90 points - 2021 Peacock Patch Zinfandel

This wine is juicy, lively with aromas of blackberry, mulberry and cinnamon-vanilla spice. The palate offers black cherry, orange marmalade, star anise and black-tea leaf wrapped around bittersweet chocolate shavings and a dry finish. Pair with meat loaf. — Tonya Pitts

A true emblem of Ruby Hill Winery, our Peacock Patch Zin celebrates the vineyard ecosystem, including our ostentatious avian friends, the peacocks. Ideal for pairing and gifting alike, this beautiful wine is calling for you!

We hope you’ll visit the tasting room soon to enjoy these remarkable wines. Perhaps you will even find a new favorite!


Time Posted: May 17, 2024 at 7:10 AM Permalink to Five Critically Acclaimed Wines Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
May 3, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

Cuvée Dray Update

     We recently welcomed the new vintage of our beloved Cuvée Dray into the tasting room! The estate-grown Bordeaux-style blend brings together 53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Petit Verdot, and 20% Merlot in the 2021 vintage. A smooth and complex aroma offers notes of blackberry, ripe red fruit, and floral accents. The flavor profile exemplifies balanced mixed fruit in each sumptuous sip. Juicy, elegant, and cohesive on the palate, this wine has a nice tannin profile, silky texture, and a flavorful finish—this wine will hold up for years to come.

     Beyond its exceptional quality and flavor, Cuvée Dray is a passion project of our animal-loving winery. It is our celebration of all of the things that bring goodness and joy into our lives, especially our furry friends. For every bottle of Cuvée Dray sold, Ruby Hill donates $10 to Valley Humane Society to aid them in their mission to spread compassion and companionship through the love of animals. 

Valley Humane Society’s Work 

     Valley Humane Society (VHS) was founded right here in Pleasanton and has served people and pets in the Tri-Valley for over 30 years. With rigorous compassion aimed at increasing welfare and quality of life for every animal brought into their care, they serve with optimism, love, and integrity.  

"Valley Humane Society creates a brighter future for cats and dogs by encouraging and strengthening the bond between people and pets. VHS rescues and rehabilitates companion animals, champions responsible caretaking, shares pets’ soothing affections with people in need of comfort, and supports and preserves existing pet-guardian relationships." - VHS Mission Statement

The Partnership So Far

     Cuvée Dray is named for our beloved winery dog, Draymond. During the lockdowns of 2020, when we needed a way to look toward brighter days, a lot of us turned towards our pets for companionship and much-needed levity. With some extra time on our hands and renewed love for our furry friends, the idea for Cuvée Dray was born. Our Winemaker Jesse painstakingly crafted several blends with names inspired by our four-legged friend, and a label was designed based on a picture of Draymond as a puppy in the vineyard.

     The gorgeous wine and adorable bottle captured the palates and hearts of many. When this project started, our goal was to raise $20,000 for Valley Humane Society and their work to improve the lives of animals and the people who love them. Since this blend’s first release in August 2021, we have had the honor of donating more than $70,000 to Valley Humane Society, and we’re just getting started. We have set a goal of reaching $100,000 donated by the end of 2024! We can’t do it without you.

If you love people, pets, wine, or all of the above, we are delighted to offer you our Cuvée Dray.


Time Posted: May 3, 2024 at 5:53 AM Permalink to Cuvée Dray Update Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
April 19, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

April in the Vineyard

Spring has settled in across our estate vineyard. Everywhere you look, you see the verdant signs of fresh growth, as the trees blossom and the birds sing. Come with us through this photo gallery to see the beauty of the estate at one of our favorite times of day: sunrise. 

The early buds and leaves of this Sangiovese give just a hint of what this vine will look like in its full growth later this year. 

The neat rows of vines wait patiently in the cloudy dawn. The colder, rainier spring has given our vines the boost they need to send out their shoots, forming vines, leaves, and buds.

Our Sauvignon Blanc vines grow ambitiously; from week to week they will continue growing up and out until they tower over us.

A ray of light catches the perfect shape of this early Petite Sirah bud, emulating the shape of a grape cluster. 

Some of our vineyard blocks, like this Chardonnay, are already well-dressed in a robe of green leaves, growing fast and vibrantly. 

Other blocks take their time. This beautiful block of Barbera grows at its own pace, spending this season soaking in the nutrients and sunlight it needs to produce fruit later on. 

Because of how we prune our vineyard, some vines in these early stages stand above the rest, a banner of green growth that will soon be joined by the ambitious shoots around it. 

There is something fresh and special about this season, where precious new life springs from old vines. 

We are excited to see what the future holds for the 2024 harvest, but there’s a long way to “grow” still!

Thank you for taking a virtual walk with us. If you would like to experience our estate vineyard in person and get a peek behind the scenes at our production cellar, we recommend checking out our Mello Cielo Vineyard Experience bus tour! It’s fun like no other. 


Time Posted: Apr 19, 2024 at 5:25 AM Permalink to April in the Vineyard Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
April 5, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

What We're Drinking

If you’re looking for relatable, realistic, and delicious wine pairings, the Ruby Hill staff are the people to ask. This week, we asked our knowledgeable team of wine-lovers to tell us about their go-to wines from our collections, plus what they’re eating alongside it! Come along with us as we dream up a delicious menu for April. 

Sandi - Sparkling Wine
Pairing perfectly with a bubbly personality, Sandi loves a glass of our Sparkling wines. Easy to pair with all kinds of food, she says she’d enjoy it this week alongside ham and potatoes au gratin. 

Ami - Grapeful Rosé
This week, Ami suggests leaning into the springtime vibes with a fresh green salad with pomegranate and grilled chicken, which makes a great match for a lovely and unbeatably fresh glass of our Grapeful Rosé

Sue - Sangiovese 
Keeping with the spring theme, Sue recommends Sangiovese for its delicious brightness. This Italian red meets her table next to angel hair pasta with marinara, along with garlic bread and a side salad. As an extra perk, the Sangiovese is on sale as the wine of the month!

Jeanne M - Intesa 
Without a doubt, Jeanne picks an Intesa, a new vintage of which hit the tasting room this week! The combination of Cabernet and Barbera makes it a positively scrumptious pairing for Jeanne’s recommendation of a mushroom-sausage pizza. 

Paul - Reserve Mirage 
The Mirage is an limited-production blend featured in our Reserve Collection, with a lustrous and balanced flavor profile. Right now, Paul enjoys the Mirage alongside baked barbecue chicken, and we agree wholeheartedly. 

Jeanne S - Cuvée Dray 
Also debuting a new vintage this week, the Cuvée Dray is a dazzlingly delicious Bordeaux-style blend, which Jeanne is pairing with a tri tip, smoked and then grilled. Is anyone else drooling?

Sandy - Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 
It’s hard to go wrong with a good Cabernet. Sandy suggests going all-out and enjoying a luxurious prime rib, which partners like a dream with our Reserve Cabernet. Make sure to use freshly cracked pepper on that steak!

Lauri & Clay - Jewel Petit Verdot 
This elegant wine has become the go-to favorite of many team members. Lauri savors the Jewel Petit Verdot with a filet mignon, while Clay says he’ll go for a tomahawk steak with grilled onions and mushrooms, and a dijon horseradish. 

Craving a glass of your favorite wine? Visit our tasting room or order online to stock up on Ruby Hill wines. Don’t forget to check out our mixed cases for the best deals—these prices won’t last long!

Time Posted: Apr 5, 2024 at 6:55 AM Permalink to What We're Drinking Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
March 22, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

5 Documentaries About Wine

This weekend, we’re waiting out the surprise showers of springtime with some of our favorite indoor activities. Pop some popcorn or grab your other favorite snacks, pour a glass of wine, and immerse yourself in a documentary about delicious vino!

The documentaries are perfect for any wine lover who wants to increase their knowledge and be entertained at the same time. Enjoy a peek behind the curtain into a few areas of the wine world that deserve some attention. From the soil to your glass, so much art, science, history, and more goes into every wine you know and love. Below is a short list of some of our favorite wine documentaries—and a suggested wine pairing, of course. These are not only informational about wine and wine regions, but they are also incredibly entertaining, and we promise you will feel like more of a wine expert after you have watched them. 

Wine Documentaries to Add to Your Watchlist

MONDOVINO - This documentary follows well-known players in the wine world. You will hear about everything from winemaking to marketing and travel to five different continents as they uncover the complexities of the industry. Since the story of wine reaches all over the globe, this film includes a variety of languages, so be sure you are up for reading subtitles. Complete this watching experience with our Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. This series will take you on an emotional rollercoaster; you will want something steady, reliable, and delicious to come along for the ride.


A YEAR IN BURGUNDY - The Burgundy region of France is known worldwide for making some of the most expensive wines in the world. In this film, you will follow importer Martine Saunier and seven families as they work through the 2011 vintage. After watching this, you’ll get an even greater sense of how winemaking is far more than what lands in your glass. You will also see precisely why Burgundian wines command their prices. It's not a Burgundy (in fact, it’s a Bordeaux varietal) but we still love the 2021 Jewel Petit Verdot for this viewing. 


DECANTED -  "What does it take to make it in Napa Valley?" Nearly every wine lover knows Napa Valley for its reputation of making outstanding wines, and this film follows some of the most elite winemakers that represent the region, discussing what it takes to craft wines of distinction. Napa Valley may sit in the spotlight, but critically-acclaimed, high-quality wines are also made right here in the Livermore Valley. We are pairing this documentary with 2020 Cuvée Dray, our Bordeaux-inspired red blend that won Best of Class in the San Francisco Chronicle International Wine Competition. 


IT STARTS WITH WINE - The team at Wine Enthusiast created this multi-part series. In season 1, you will visit Uruguay, Argentina, and a neighbor to the east, Bonterra Vineyards. What makes this series interesting is how much they also incorporate each region's unique food and culinary culture as a part of what makes their section of the wine world so unique. Here at Ruby Hill Winery, we value sustainability in all our vineyard practices. Our Peacock Patch Zinfandel is one representation of the way we celebrate the natural beauty of our vineyard and our intentions to preserve it. Sip on this one while you watch!


Do you have a favorite wine-centric documentary film or series that you haven't seen listed here? Send us an email at info@rubyhillwinery.net or tag us on Instagram @rubyhillwines and let us know what we should add to our list!


Time Posted: Mar 22, 2024 at 4:36 AM Permalink to 5 Documentaries About Wine Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
March 7, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

2024 Case Sale Blitz

This Weekend Only - March 9th & 10th ​

Our 2024 Case Sale Blitz is almost here! In this blog, you’ll find the juicy details on wines that we will feature in this year’s sale. Additional wines may make a surprise appearance, available in very limited supply, so don't miss out! More information about the event can be found at the bottom of this post. 

2017 Petite Sirah - Reserve Collection, Ruby Hill Winery

This excellent Reserve Petite Sirah comes highly recommended, scoring 92 points by Wine Enthusiast. Jim Gordon, critic for Wine Enthusiast, summarized this bold beauty as such: “Big and opulent, this full-bodied wine is jam-packed with indulgent, ripe blackberry and blueberry flavors and braced with tons of fine-grained tannins for a mouthfilling and smooth texture.” You can expect tannin-endowed wines like these to only improve with age, so it’s the perfect time to open that 2017 and get lost in the luxury of each sip. 
Case Blitz Price: $150 | Member’s Price: $125

2019 Cabernet Sauvignon - Reserve Collection, Ruby Hill Winery

Also awarded 92 points by Wine Enthusiast, this wine continues our reputation for phenomenal Cabernet. Multi-layered flavors include the dark fruit notes you can expect, including blackberry, black plum, black cherry, and cassis. Astute wine lovers can also search the aroma and flavors for accents of star anise, earthy forest floor, meaty umami, cedar, and a touch of sweet tobacco. Unctuous and smooth, this wine is perfect with a wide range of foods, and can be enjoyed now or for many years to come. 
Case Blitz Price: $210 | Member’s Price: $185

2017 Cabernet Sauvignon - Riserva Collection, Rubino Estates Winery

This wine was awarded Double Gold in the 2021 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, and offers richly plush notes of black cherry, blackberry, and dark chocolate. The quintessential wine for a delicious steak dinner. We selected this vintage of Riserva Cabernet from the library and fell in love with the maturity and full-bodied nature of the tannin, with integrated roundness and just the right amount of ripeness. 
Case Blitz Price: $210 | Member’s Price: $185

2018 Trebbiano - Rubino Estates Winery

This light and crisp varietal is a traditional Italian white wine. It is exceptionally prevalent in the old world, but a rare find here in California. A graceful yet subtle profile features notes of tart apple, white peach, orange blossom, and stone. On the palate, it is dry and delicate with pleasant food-friendly acidity, smooth sippable mouthfeel, and mild minerality. Pair with raw oysters with lemon or vinegar, fine white fish in lemon and butter sauce, summery pasta dishes, or uramaki sushi.
Case Blitz Price: $100 | Member’s Price: $75

2019 Ferrario - Famiglia Collection, Rubino Estates Winery

Velvety and elegant, each sip dances with jammy fruit and playful baking spice, all on a rich backdrop of floral accents. This wine is a club-exclusive blend, named in honor of Ernest Ferrario. Ferrario was an Italian immigrant and the proprietor of the Estate Vineyard from 1921-1975. By the mid-twentieth century, the Ferrario family was well-known for their quality wines, especially their Zinfandel. This blend honors the Ferrarios by combining Barbera—an Italian varietal, and Zinfandel—Ferrario’s specialty. The 2019 vintage components are 43% Zinfandel, 29% Barbera, 14% Merlot, and 14% Petit Verdot. 
Case Blitz Price: $225 | Member’s Price: $200

Our Case Sale Blitz is our annual warehouse clear-out event, offering delicious wines at unbeatable prices so we can make room for the wines of the future! This event is hosted at Rubino Estates Winery in the covered production area around the back of the tasting room. All are welcome to attend this event at no cost, whether they are a first-time visitor or a long-time member of Ruby Hill or Rubino. No reservations are needed, just drop by, say hello, and try these featured wines! 

The Case Sale Blitz will run from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on March 9th and 10th only. Sales are valid only while supplies last, and all wines are in limited quantity!

Event Terms and Conditions: Wines are available for purchase in full cases only. All sales are final and wines must be picked up at time of sale. No online, shipping, or phone orders will be accepted. Limit of one case per varietal, per party. Cannot be combined with loyalty points, discounts, or other promotions.

Time Posted: Mar 7, 2024 at 3:26 AM Permalink to 2024 Case Sale Blitz Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
February 23, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

Four Gourmet Dessert Wine Pairings

We are eagerly awaiting the arrival of springtime, hoping for long, dreamy days and cheerful flowers. In the meantime, we’re making the most of the cooler months by enjoying comfort foods and creative pairings. This week, we set out to find perfect gourmet pairings for our Solera in Perpetuum. This port-style dessert wine bears rich layered complexity in each sip, with just the right amount of luscious sweetness. Because of the wine’s richness, food pairings for dessert wines can be tricky. The recipes we have selected represent the art of harmony and contrast of flavor and texture. Each offers a deliciously complex interplay of savory, sweet, bitter, and more. Let your taste buds sing! 

Blue Cheese & Cherry Crostatas

Recipe by Emma Laperruque with Food 52 

These beautiful crostatas offer an elevated and elegant appetizer. Rich juicy cherries make a luscious flavor bridge, complemented by a perfect savory funk from the blue cheese. 

Pear and Roquefort Macaroni and Cheese

Recipe by Uncomplicated Chef 

Mac and cheese is a dish for all ages. This recipe takes an ideal comfort food to the next level with balanced interplay of complex favor and deliciously creamy carbs. 

Salted Dark Chocolate Pomegranate Tart

Recipe by The Creative Bite 

This impressive and truly decadent dessert is easier than it appears. Savor the delectable interplay of sweetness, bitterness, and just a touch of salt, maximizing the harmony with the pairing. 

Dark Chocolate Cranberry Walnut Cookies

Recipe by Beyond the Butter 

The combination of nuts and fruit within these delightful cookies pick up on subtle notes of toasted almond and hazelnut in dessert wine in addition to the deep cocoa and dried fruit. Mouthwatering!

Our Solera dessert wine features dense aromas of fruit preserves, toasted almond, hazelnut, and jammy flavors of blackberry, dried plum, and cocoa. A rich, sweet mouthfeel gives way to a lingering finish. Our recommendations center on cheese and chocolate, the tried-and-true companions of wine. Blue cheese, in particular, is the savory soulmate of this dessert wine. Dark chocolate, with its impeccable bittersweetness, compliments our Solera in Perpetuum in ways nothing else can. When in doubt, choose pairings that build on these flavors and add accent notes of fruit or nuts, just like the recipes given above. 


With February nearly over, our Wine of the Month sale on Solera in Perpetuum is coming to an end! Make sure to get yours now so you don’t miss out on this discount.

Time Posted: Feb 23, 2024 at 6:14 AM Permalink to Four Gourmet Dessert Wine Pairings Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
February 9, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

True Love: Wine & Cheese

In honor of Valentine’s day, we’re celebrating the soulmates of the fine food world: wine and cheese. There’s no denying that they are an exemplary couple! True love makes each individual better, and that’s exactly what you taste when a wine meets the perfect cheese. This week, we gathered some of our tasting room ambassadors to play matchmaker, sharing their favorite duos of Ruby Hill wine with exceptional cheese.

The superstar of pairings is our Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine can go steady with a manchego, asiago, aged cheddar, or a black pepper BellaVitano for a flavor combination that will have you reaching for more!

Lauri recommends pairing a bold asiago with our Reserve Petite Sirah for a deep, rich combination. Rick is partial to a high-quality manchego, which he recommends alongside Petite Sirah or one of our heavier blends, such as Riverbed Red. Manchego will absorb tannin, so don’t be afraid to go bold!

Karen enjoys the combination of Peacock Patch Zin and a black pepper cheese like BellaVitano. Paul is partial to a nice smoky cheddar with our Peacock. Both of these mouthwatering combinations are a match made in heaven. 

For our white wine lovers, Sue recommends complementing your Chardonnay with a mild stilton with apricots, or a baked brie with fig jam. Anything luscious and creamy, like a swiss cheese, will have your tastebuds singing! For Sauvignon Blanc, Ami suggests pairing up with a lemon zest infused chevre. 

For those who like to balance their sweet tooth with something savory and satisfying, Ami and Karen recommend pairing our Solera Dessert wine, the wine of the month, with a blue cheese. For this combination, Lauri suggests a Maytag Blue, but a Stilton will do as well!

All of the cheeses in the Ruby Hill deli are right at home with a wine pairing. The Garlic BellaVitano, for example, has a pizza-esque quality, making it the ideal mate for our Grapeful Red. Our Champagne-infused Yancey’s Fancy cheese is fittingly enjoyable with our Sparkling wine. The Balsamic BellaVitano, often featured on our bus tour menu, makes an agreeable companion for any red wine of your choosing!

We hope you’ll indulge in these pairings. You’ll know you’ve found a lovely wine and cheese match when they are better together when they are apart. Your senses will buzz!


If Valentine’s day isn’t your thing, this guide is also perfect for putting together a cheese board for the big game this Sunday—or any occasion, for that matter. Cheers!

We invite you to share your favorite pairings with us: @rubyhillwines


Time Posted: Feb 9, 2024 at 5:49 AM Permalink to True Love: Wine & Cheese Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
January 26, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

A Quick Guide to Describing Wine

        At Ruby Hill, we strive to make wine approachable. Wine lovers of all kinds are welcome here! If you have ever felt overwhelmed by wordy tasting notes or just want to know more about how to describe wine, you’re in the right place. 

        If you don’t sense the subtle nuance of wild strawberry jam, graphite, or petrichor that your neighbor does, you’re no less of a wine lover. Still, if you want to hone your wine description skills, there are a few places to start that will empower you to taste what makes a wine refined and elegant! Wine tasting is all about engaging the senses for optimum enjoyment, so ask yourself a few questions:

What do you see?

Always “taste” with your eyes first! For red wines, note the depth of the hue. Is it a deep purple-black, or a bright brick red? These can give you hints about the wine’s character. Swirling the wine in your glass can also give you a hint about how rich it will feel on the palate, like the difference between whole milk and skim. White wines can range in color from very light to rich amber tones. Rosé wines will differ in color depending on the varietal from which they are made and the style in which they are made. Our Grapeful Rosé, for example, has a coppery pink hue, a picturesque indicator that it is made from our vibrant Sangiovese grapes. 

What do you smell?

Don’t be overwhelmed by trying to describe hyper-specific aromas. The aroma could remind you of flowers, fruit, soil, or herbs, easily described as floral, fruity, earthy, and herbaceous aromas, respectively. A wine’s smells are usually divided into three categories: primary, secondary, and tertiary. For those who are curious, the grape itself influences the primary aromas, the winemaking process dictates secondary aromas, and the aging process provides tertiary aromas. The more you approach wine tasting with curiosity and intentionality, the more common features you will notice. 

What do you taste? 

Just like the aroma, focus on general descriptors that help you unpack what you are tasting. Try to categorize the character of the fruit: Is it red fruit, like a strawberry, cherry or cranberry? Blueberry and plum notes can be described as blue fruit; blackberries, black cherry, and black currant are called dark, purple, and black fruit. Each of these connotes an amount of ripeness as well. Fresh notes like stone fruit, tropical fruit, and citrus fruits are commonly used to describe light wines. 
Common savory notes include leather or cigar box which help capture some of the smoky or dense notes from oak aging. Oak aging can also result in pastry-like flavors, such as pie crust, baking spice, and vanilla. 

What do you feel?

Wine has much more to offer than delightful flavors. When you take a sip, think about how it feels in your mouth. Common descriptors include velvety, suede-like, or even sandpaper. A wine that makes you pucker may be acidic, but a wine that makes your tongue feel dry, like a well-steeped black tea, is tannic. A buttery wine is one that has a full-bodied ripeness, common for oaked Chardonnay. All of these qualities have their place in delicious wines. 

What can you learn from the bottle?

A wine bottle can offer more information to enhance your enjoyment. The bottle will provide the vintage, indicating when the grapes were harvested, and the appellation, indicating where the grapes were grown. Each vintage and region have their own personalities! Of course, the bottle will also indicate if the wine is a single varietal, like Cabernet Sauvignon, or a blend. Every Cabernet will have some character in common with other Cabernets, though the winemaker, region, and vintage all exert influence as well. On the other hand, blends offer a wholly unique experience and often showcase a dynamic balance between diverse varietals.

        It is important to remember that wine descriptions have a level of subjectivity and express the personality of the taster. We all perceive our reference points and the wine’s qualities differently, so the most important thing is to enjoy the process. Remember, it’s always acceptable to drink wines simply because you enjoy them. Life is too short to take too seriously!

If you're looking to "practice" your wine tasting skills, our Mixed Case sales are a great place to start! They offer a delicious assortment of wines at a fantastic price. Click here to shop now!

Time Posted: Jan 26, 2024 at 3:51 AM Permalink to A Quick Guide to Describing Wine Permalink
Ruby Hill Winery
January 12, 2024 | Ruby Hill Winery

A Mood-Boosting Guide to Mindfulness

This is our recipe for a fun 2024. If you’re already tired of chilly weather or worried about the twists and turns that the year might bring, you’re not alone. As each day goes by, however, we’re working to institute “random acts of wellness”—little doses of mindfulness that can brighten each day. For both the things we can work on and the things that are outside of our control, these simple and realistic actions may help you to feel ready to face each day, week, month, and year. 

Get Outside and Move. 

Even if the sun isn’t shining or the chill is getting to you, it’s worth it, believe us! The physical and psychological benefits of fresh air and movement is overwhelming. You don’t need to have a full workout on your front lawn (although that might be refreshing), just put on a coat, step outside, and breathe. Stretch a little, take a few steps, or go around the block and enjoy that energizing power.

Clean Something.

You don’t have to scrub and polish, just set a timer for 2-5 minutes and straighten something up! Do a little bit of tidying while listening to a favorite song, podcast, or audiobook. Research shows that cleaning is powerfully connected to improved mood and focus, so if you’re looking for a little act of wellness with good reward, this one is worth trying. Bonus points if you grab a friend, family, member, or coworker to join you and do the same.

Express Thankfulness. 

Next time you say “thank you” to someone, try to pause and dwell on your gratitude. Trust us, it’s closely connected with well-being. If you appreciate a sense of meaning or feel like you need a little boost, we recommend taking a moment to write down a couple things for which you’re thankful, or find a reason to write a thank-you note to someone. You don’t even need to send the note, although you may find another boost of joy in doing so!

Change your Scenery.

This is especially important for anyone feeling weighed down by a monotonous routine. Take your work or task to another room, or leave your work behind and spend 5 minutes with a cozy blanket. Try to find a room with natural light. Try putting on some music you enjoy. Sing along, even if it’s not great!

Try Something New.

Trying new things is a great way to make memories, stimulate creativity, and open the door to know yourself better! The gesture does not have to be grand. Try wearing something outside of your usual wardrobe, or find a recipe for something you’ve never cooked. If you usually drink white wine, try reds. If you usually walk for exercise, try biking.  Even if it doesn’t feel as comfortable as what’s familiar to you, it’s always worth trying!

Here at Ruby Hill Winery, walking through the vineyards, riding the bus, trying new varietals, and meeting with friends are some of our favorite mood-boosters. What are some random acts of wellness you want to bring into your 2024?


Time Posted: Jan 12, 2024 at 4:00 AM Permalink to A Mood-Boosting Guide to Mindfulness Permalink

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