EP 950 California Chardonnay and Cabernet Tasting

Gary Vaynerchuk sits down for a traditional WLTV, with 2 Chardonnays and a Cabernet from California. Also, Gary makes an announcement for this year’s Thanksgiving Secret Pack!

Wines tasted in this episode:

2008 Rusack ChardonnaySanta Barbara Chardonnay
2008 Falcone ChardonnayPaso Robles Chardonnay
2007 Obsidian Ridge Cabernet SauvignonNorth Coast Cabernet Sauvignon

Links mentioned in todays episode.

Latest Comment:

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luca bercelli


Solid episode.
My drinking breakdown is 50% Red, 45% White, 4% Bubbles, 1% Rose

Tags: cabernet, california, chardonnay, red, Video, white, wine, wines

Episodes >

  • C & L

    QOTD: 40% Chardonnay 25% Sauvingnon Blanc 20% Pinot Noir 10% Sparkling (Brut) 5% other red & white. Chris & Liz

  • Anonymous

    What do you do with the other 10%?

  • Anonymous

    WOW! Must be from Oregon!

  • Anonymous


  • Karol

    Happy Belated B-day! 60% Red 34% White 4% Sparkling 2% Rose

  • elron

    SSChris, you’re a trip!

    Poor BLou. Does he have a clue?

  • Steve

    Happy Birthday, Gary!! Red, 90 / White, 10 Bless you in all your work!

  • FineWineMike

    Happy Belated Birthday Gary…Red 90% White 8% Sparkling 2%

  • Dusanmal

    QOTD: 45% Red , 45% White, 9% sweet, 1% Rose, 0% sparkling.

  • Drink&Trade

    Happy B-Day GV. 70 Red, 20 White, 5 Sparkling, 5 Rose.

    Nice to see some value out of Cali, my home state. Doubtful to get many values out of Napa, but the Central Coast is getting some chops.

  • 97% red
    maybe 2.5% white
    .5% sparkling (new years)

  • A) Happy B-day, GV! B) Have to say, I’m rooting for your Jets. They’re doing an awesome job.

    QOTD: 85% Red, 10% Bubbles, and 5% White. Should diversify to some rose…

  • EpicTale

    QOTD: red – 67%, white – 20%, rose – 10%, sparkling – 3%. Happy birthday, Gary, and thanks for keeping it going!

  • Anonymous

    40 white, 40 red, 10 sparkling, 10 rose

  • Anonymous

    I’m not entirely clear on the issue you’re having. I disliked Disqus pretty strongly when they first introduced it on WLTV, but since then they’ve cleaned up their implementation substantially. As you say, clearing your cookies will of course log you out of your Disqus account, as well as any other accounts (Facebook, Twitter, email, whatever) you might be logged into at the time.

    I think what happened to you was that you posted through the function which allows people without an account registered with Disqus to post a comment. When you make a new comment and hit “Post as …” (the same box you get when you hit “reply” under an existing comment) a dialog box pops up where you can choose how you want to comment. The default setting is “Guest”, for people without Disqus accounts. You can type anything you want as your name here; I could type my name, but unless I navigate to the “Disqus” box along the left of the window and log in there, it can’t associate the comment with my account.

  • mikeS

    QOTD: 0.6White, 0.25Red, 0.1Sparkling, 0.05Rose

  • Rimarfish

    QOTD: 48% White, 47% Red, 3% Sparkling, 2% Rose
    QOTD2: I’m not sure if California will become a value play, but I did notice in the last year or so, prices dropping significantely because of the economy.

  • Anonymous

    60 white, 30 red, 5 sparkling, 5 rose

    It depends on what you mean by value. Getting a lot of screaming deals out here in CA because of the economy. but I’m not sure how far across the country they translate.

  • Anonymous

    QOTD: mostly red

    CA cannot be value.

    happy birthday, gary-vee!

  • Anonymous

    QOTD 1: 50% white, 30%red, 15% sparkling, 5% rose.
    QOTD 2: CA can bring value, but you have to know where to look. Overall, I will go to Portugal, southern France, southern Italy, Spain (outside of Rioja, Ribera del Duero, Jumilla), Chile (coastal regions), Austria, etc. to seek out value before looking to CA, but I’ve started to figure out how to seek out value here. Unfortunately, it is not true front-line pricing value, but rather finding higher-end CA wines a few vintages old in retail locations that do not specialize in wine (grocery stores, World Market) that were purchased and priced prior to the current economic downturn. In an attempt to move older (and sometimes better due to bottle age) product that hasn’t been selling as well as lower-priced wines, I’ve been able to scoop up some top-tier CA Chards, Merlots, and sparklers at a fraction of their suggested retail. Would I have bought these items at $20 or $30? Not a chance, but at $12 to $16 close-out pricing, I’m headed to check-out with a full basket.

  • Happy birthday Gary

  • pbarr

    Hey Gary,

    QOTD: 70% red, 25% white, 4% rose, 1% sparkling.

  • Cofneverlivetotell

    QOTD – 60% red, 20% white, 12% sparkling, 4% sweet white, 3% sweet red, 1% rosé

  • karrens


  • Stretchmk

    Gary, those tannins you are experiencing from that Obsidian Lake County Cab are somewhat characteristic of the growing region. I am sure those are not oak tannins, but from the crushed grapes themselves, i.e. skins, stems, seeds. I have experienced those wines in the tank, before any oak treatment. The red clay type soils are very non typical for California, and for some reason force those Cabernet grapes to be more tannic. On the other hand, as your comments and tasting analysis showed, in the hands of a skilled winemaker, at a relatively reasonable price, we get an interesting nuanced wine, which seems to have great aging potential, while still having the fruit component we expect from Ca wines

  • QOTD – 80% red (everything), 10% rose (Mulderbosch cab rose, Muga grenache rose), 5% white (semillion and tokai friulano only, really), 5% bub (at the club.)

  • Anonymous

    So the first wine was a almost a 90, then it was an 89 (“solid wine, well made”) and then at the end an 87? Come on, Gary. The Jets got very lucky to escape with a win. That’s three in a row. Someday, their luck will run out. How about those Patriots? Impressive win over the Stillers.

    QOTD: 77% red, 18% white, 3% Port, 1% sparkling, 1% Rose

    QOTD2: I don’t see California ever becoming a value play unless they raise the quality of the under $20 wines. Most of the inexpensive California wines that I’ve had over the last several years are just atrocious. Bad wine that is inexpensive is not a value, IMO.


    IIIIIIII WAAAANNNNTTTTSSSSSSS………………………………………… well you know. :oP

  • Noah_rosenblum

    Gary V,

    Wishing you a Healthy, Happy 35th Birthday and many many more to come.

    Best Regards


  • Peedo_81

    QOTD: Yikes … never looked at this until now, but tells me where my gaps in experience are in a big way.

    Reds – 85.2%, Whites – 11.8%, Sparklers & Rose – 1.9%, Desert Wines – 0.9%

    This is just what I drink, my cellar holdings are even more biased at 97.3% reds.


    It’s scottish Whiskey tonight……. Aberlour Warehouse No.1, Single Cask Selection, bottled by my girl in Scotland. 14 years of age, No, not her, the Whiskey…. !!!!! 😛

    Cask number 3163

    Filled into cask 11-1993

    Bottle number 237

    59,7% Vol.

    Nice golden colour, smells like herbs, caramel orange peel?, woody (allen?).

    Tastes like “da shit” in “da hizzy”, Really good, full, i get a hair of alcohol. But it’s too complex to call it like i would eventually see it (see layer upon layer). The “curtains” are exceptional to watch. This is a full scottish breakfast. And you can’t buy it. :O)

    Because it’s mine. Cheers!


    Yo GV, we absolutely need a whiskey show soon. Ardbeg “Supernova”, Tallisker “10”, Lagavulin “16”, would be awesome, Cheers! 😛

  • Bobpsi

    Good call on the CH wines. He’s had a good run latley of 07 Cabs

  • Anonymous

    sideQOTD: 88% red, 9% white, 3% sparkling and rose. This is different from just a couple of years ago when I would have said 95% red, 5% white, sparkling, rose.

    QOTD: value in CA. depends what you mean. Go to any wine shop and you’ll find every price point. But are the lower priced CA wines any good. That’s an opinion of course. I tend to find better quality and value in other places that are not CA. While I buy and drink CA wine, I have significantly more from France, Spain, Italy (in that order), and other places too.

  • Anonymous

    Fun fact from the Falcone web site, “Since moving to Santa Barbara County and producing Chardonnay for Rusack Vineyards as our day time job…”

    Same fruit, totally different wines???

  • Kenchicoria

    This wine needs to be decantered, than it is fantastic. As good as any cab on the merket at that price

  • Kenchicoria

    Sorry about the spelling

  • Anonymous

    QOTD: 60% white, 30 % sparkling, 10 % red, 0% rose.

  • 80% White 10% Bubbles 10% red

  • 50% white, 30% red, 10% sparkling, 10% Rose. Mostly because the missus is not a red wine drinker at all. If I drink white, sparkling, or rose, we’re usually drinking together (more often) – if it’s red, I drink alone, and a single bottle covers two evenings.

  • lol you know I adjust on the fly!

  • Anonymous

    Good episode. Personally, I don’t drink much Cali wine b/c QPR is just not there. I do like many of their wines, however.

    QOTD (Main)- 85% Red, 12% White, 2% Rose, 1% Sparkling
    QOTD (Sub)- Not sure. I think that this episode shows there is potential, but I think that there needs to be a bit of a shift in mindset. I remember around episode 600 or so, you had a lovely guest who was a winemaker from Napa. She was saying that her $75 Napa Cab was a value and you called her on it a little. To me, right now, there are too many people in Cali who have the mindset that if Silver Oak is $100 and Harlan is $350, then my “premium cab” is a value at $75. I think some of this comes down to vintage as well. In 2005, there was a ton of very good to great (say high 80 to low 90 type wine) Bordeaux produced and much of it was in the $20-30 range. That is a fair price to me.

  • Toddtemple

    QOTD- 78% White, %16 red,5% Sparkling,1% Rose. Now that i type that out i realize that i need to drink much more rose.

  • ANieuwoudt

    QOTD – 85% white, 10% red, 4% sparkling, 1% rose. Shying more and more away from red, being pulled strongly towards Tasmanian Riesling at the moment. Also trying some different sparklings in preparation for the Australian summer/holiday season.

  • Anonymous

    Unfortunately it’s quite rare to find many Californian wines in the UK.. generally just a handful of wines that don’t have Gallo on the label.

    Red 40%
    White 35%
    Sparkling 20%
    Sweet 5%
    Rosé 0%

    Unfortunately I’m yet to ever try a rosé that I loved, so I never buy them.

  • Kodidog

    It is interesting that Falcone crushes his “day job” wine with his “night job” wine.. at least in GV’s eyes!

  • Larry

    My mix is about 40 % red, 30% white, 20% sparkling, 10% Rosé. I tend toward French wines but have a lot from California. California has to get more into value purely from an economical standpoint. They produce way to much wine to be stuck in high gear all of the time and the market still is breaking at $30 so $85 Cabs are sitting unsold or being discounted. For Cab based wines from the US, I am leaning more to Washington State at this point. I can get virtually anything from CA here in New Mexico and if I get desperate or into it just drive there and fill up the car. I have a bigger issue with getting French, Austrian, German wines here.

  • Gary, I believe you thought Obsidian was from Washington because you confused Red Hills (Cali) with Red Mountain (WA) 🙂

    Anywho… my pie chart is:

    80% Red (Of which roughly 30% Cab Sauv 30% Pinot Noir 20% Merlot 5% Syrah 15% Other)
    18% White (Of which 40% Riesling 40% Chardonnay 20% Other)
    1% Sparkling (Champagne, Cava and Sekt on special occasions)
    1% Rose (On hot summer days)

  • Sweet Reverend

    QOTD: 90% red, 10%white, 0% sparkling and rose

  • bobbytiger

    QOTD: Sparkling 40%, Red 30%, and white 30%.
    Rose: none since college.
    Heavy on the bubbles. Can’t get enough.


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