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My first "flight" of 8 Cabernets, which includes Cab Francs and Cab blends.  Our *very* detailed notes help Barbara determine the top wines.

My first “flight” of 8 Cabernets, which includes Cab Francs and Cab blends. Our scores and our *very* detailed notes help Barbara determine the top wines.

Welcome back, my friends! It’s time for another sneak peek (*Click Here* to catch up) into the mystifying world of professional wine competitions.

We’ll venture together into the judging room where the secret stuff happens. Later, I’ll show you how you can score half-price tix for the upcoming March 21st public tasting ~ the Cabernet Challenge.
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Ready for a day of Cabernet? Great! Jump in the ‘vertible, and we’ll head to San Francisco for the final stage of judging in the Cabernet Shootout.

Veteran wine judge (and two-fisted pourer!) Laura Ness refills our glasses for the next flight of wine.

Veteran wine judge (and two-fisted pourer!) Laura Ness refills our glasses for the next flight of wine.

Ann Lucretia Roberts  takes a sip; Susan Darwin and Scott Clemens write down their impressions.

Ann Lucretia Roberts takes a sip; Susan Darwin and Scott Clemens write down their impressions.


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I’ve saved you a seat at the judging table, where we’ll join our Fearless Leader, “Wine Evangelist” Barbara Drady of Affairs of the Vine, and her mega-panel of several dozen highly experienced wine judges.

The Red Team and the Blue Team will each taste 4 flights of 8 wines each. (Notice the color-coding.)

The Red Team and the Blue Team will each taste 4 flights of 8 wines each. (Notice the color-coding.)

We’ll divide into two teams, with each tasting 32 wines in the Cab family: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Cabernet blends.

They’re the “best of the best” from our many preliminary rounds, and we consider it a privilege to taste wines of this caliber.

As always, we’ll taste only 32 wines (in 4 “flights” of 8 wines each), to allow time for writing detailed notes and to avoid palate fatigue. We taste the wines blind, of course (each bottle only has a code, such as “2-6” for Wine #6 in Flight #2), and we taste silently.

Barb Drady hands out a new scoresheet for each flight. Afterward, she collects the top copy; we keep the yellow carbon.

Barb Drady hands out a scoresheet for each flight. When she collects them, we keep a copy to compare with the master list she hands out at the very end.

After each flight, Barb and her assistants collect our scoresheets. Barb then tabulates our results, and the 40 or so top-scoring wines move on to the Cabernet Challenge on March 21.

Here, the wine-loving public will be able to blind-taste these “best of the best of the best” Cabs, cast votes for their own favorites, and pit their palates against the pros.

Judges Desiray McFall and Tiffany Gipson join Barb after our day of tasting Cab.

Judges Desiray McFall and Tiffany Gipson raise a glass with Barbara Drady after our day of tasting Cab.

And here’s the best part: Barb is offering a special, half-price “Friends Discount” for the Cabernet Challenge.

In addition to the walk-around blind tasting, the Cabernet Challenge also includes a winemakers seminar, raffle, awards ceremony, wine sales and of course food.

It’s happening next Saturday, March 21, from noon to 4:00 PM, in the Ballroom at San Francisco’s Kensington Park Hotel (450 Post Street, 3rd Floor).

These wine judgings are actually pretty tough work ~ but as you can imagine, they're a lot of fun, too!

Surprisingly, these wine judgings are actually pretty tough work ~ but as you can imagine, they’re a lot of fun, too!

For your half-price tickets, email barbara@affairsofthevine.com with the discount code AOTV.

I hope you’ve enjoyed spending the day together in the judges’ chambers, sampling all these Cabs.

And if you’re in the SF Bay Area on the 21st, I hope you’ll join me, along with Barbara and our fellow wine judges, for the Cabernet Challenge.

It’s a great chance for you to pit *your* palate against the pros!

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Meanwhile, my friends,
Cheers and happy tasting,
Rosina

PS ~ Want to nab a *free* membership in the fun, interactive Drink Wine With Dinner Club ~ and get tasty content delivered straight to your Inbox? Just *Click Here* to join instantly!

You’ll also receive a *free download* of my *foolproof* guide, “Rosina’s 5 Non-Rules for Wine and Food Pairing.” It’s the best way I know to help you make the foods *you* love taste even better!

Want to share *your* ideas? Just scroll down to the “Comments” box, or email me at Rosina@DrinkWineWithDinner.com. I look forward to hearing from you. (And be sure to tell a friend!)

Cheers once again,
Rosina