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Trione on the Go

March 1, 2013

You may have noticed that I didn’t post anything on Stay Rad last week.

That’s because I was stuck in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico…


What a bummer.


I still had two Tasting Room samples left from Trione.  Since they were only 50 ml each, and small enough to bring through airport security, I decided to take them along for the ride.


Liquids. Zip Lock Bags. We must be flying.

I was thinking about tasting the wines on the plane, but I’ve read enough articles (like this one) about the adverse effects of altitude and low humidity to know that it wouldn’t be fair to review them from 35,000 feet above sea level.  Instead, I decided to borrow some coffee cups and taste these wines during our layover in Los Angeles.

First up…


Trione 2007 Block 21 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

The 2007 Block 21 Cabernet Sauvignon comes from Trione’s Cloverdale Ranch.  It’s got 10% Merlot from the Geyserville Ranch, and 2.5% each of Petit Verdot and Malbec from the Cloverdale Ranch as well.  It costs 64 bucks.

Color: Red.  It’s tough to tell.  It’s in a coffee cup.



Nose: It’s got that good chalkiness on the nose that I love in a good Cabernet Sauvignon.  There’s a concentrated plumminess, as well.

Taste: There’s a bright burst of acid on this wine from beginning to end.  It’s loaded with cranberry and plum fruits.  Good, chalky tannins, and some nice, tobacco leaf flavors on the finish.

Score: This wine is really good.  I like it a lot.  91.

Up next…


Trione 2007 Alexander Valley Red Wine

The 2007 Red Wine is mostly made of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.  It costs $48.

Color: Red.  Like I said.  It was in a coffee cup.

Nose: Pretty tight, but there is a hint of dark plums on this one.

Taste: Bright orange zest and cranberries.  It’s got a nice peppery finish.

Score: Although good, it probably would have shown better if tasted before the Cabernet.  Not anywhere near as big in style as the previous wine, but still tasty.  I’m giving it a solid 89, and telling you to seek out the Block 21 Cabernet Sauvignon instead.

Adios… And Stay Rad,


What’s your go-to airport/airplane beverage?  Leave a comment, and let us know.

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Trione with Ceviche Tacos

February 26, 2013

The other night, I was in the mood for something different…

So I made this…


Ceviche Tacos with Swai, Mango, Avocado, Chiles, and Sriracha

I had some more Tasting Room samples from Trione so I cracked them open to see what was doing.


Trione 2008 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

The Trione 2008 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir is open-top fermented, and is a blend of three clones (115, 667, and 777).  It’s got that light elegance that I really enjoy in a Russian River Valley Pinot Noir.  There are some really tasty mushroom flavors in this wine.  The Ceviche Tacos bring out a nice peppery note in the wine.  This is a solid 89 point wine at $35.


Trione 2008 Russian River Valley Syrah

Quite a bit of the Trione 2008 Russian River Valley Syrah is fermented as whole berry clusters in open top fermenters.  The Syrah is hand-plunged up to four times a day.  This is not your standard warm-climate Syrah.  The cool Russian River Valley reels in the sometimes over-extracted fruit.  The palate is full of yummy cherries and earthy tobacco.  The Ceviche Tacos highlight a plumminess in the wine.  At 90 points, this $32 Syrah is well worth it.

Stay Rad,


What wine would you pair with Ceviche Tacos?  Leave a comment, and let us know.

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Trione with Pho

February 16, 2013

A few weeks back, the fine folks at Trione Vineyards & Winery contacted me to see if I wanted to sample their wine.

I was all, “Heck yeah!”

Early last week a package from arrived at my door.  Inside were six 50 ml samples from Trione.


Trione via

Surely, when a grand total of 300 ml (less than half a bottle) of wine is placed before you, one could be tempted to taste them all in one sitting.  However… with the diversity of styles, I figured it would be a better idea to taste them two at a time.


The other day, Kara came home with a wicked cold.

In the Rad house… when you’re sick… there’s only one cure…



While Kara was nursing herself back to health with her Vegetable Pho, I paired my Spicy Beef Pho with the first two wines from the Trione set.

First up…


Trione 2010 Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc

The 2010 Sauvignon Blanc was tank-fermented and barrel-aged.  It used a mixture of three different yeasts for fermentation, including the South African Alchemy II in order to impart a grassy characteristic.  It retails at $23.

Color: Pale.  I mean… look at it.  It is a Sauvignon Blanc after all.

Nose: Crisp lemon and grapefruit notes to go with a nice minerality.

Palate: There’s a good viscosity to this wine.  It is grassy, but not in an over-the-top type of sense.  Nice tropical fruit flavors transition into a crisp acidity.

With the Pho: This wine begs for spicy Asian food.  The heat from the Pho helps in highlighting some big grapefruit flavors and minerality in the wine.

Score: 89 points for this one.  Nerdier than your average Sauvignon Blanc… At 23 bucks, this wine is just interesting enough to make it worth it.

Next up…


Trione 2008 Russian River Valley Chardonnay

These grapes were hand-harvested and whole-bunch pressed before transfer to new and used French oak.  They used the lees from the previous vintage to get fermentation started.  I’m pretty sure that’s the same process that Dave TheVegetarian uses to make bread dough.  It retails for $30.

Color: On the pale side of golden-yellow.

Nose: This wine is straight up butterscotch and popcorn.  Depending on who you are, this could be a great thing.

Palate: To those of you that love buttery Chardonnays, this is the wine for you.  All butter, but not in a goopy sort of way.  There’s a nice, crisp green apple frutiness and acidity.

With the Pho: Upon tasting the wine, I was fearful that the pairing would be a disaster.  When’s the last time you had Pho with a side of buttered bread?  That being said, the wine did not overwhelm the Pho.  The soup actually highlighted some surprisingly enjoyable green caramel apple flavors in the wine.

Score: More and more, I find myself seeking out Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from the Russian River Valley.  Always balanced.  Always complex.  Always enjoyable.  This wine falls into my wheelhouse.  It’s definitely a croud-pleaser, and a solid effort from Trione, but I could find you something just as enjoyable in the $20 range.  88+

Two wines down.

Four to go.

Stay Rad,


Have you ever had Trione before?  What’s your favorite wine and Pho pairing?  Who makes your favorite Californina Sauvignon Blanc?  What’s your go-to wine region for Chardonnay?  Have you ever used  Leave a comment, and let us know.

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