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Toulouse Vineyards

On a recent trip north to Mendocino County’s idyllic Anderson Valley (think Napa 30 years ago with today’s wines), I visited with winemaker Vern Boltz at Toulouse Vineyards. Not only is his pinot noir spectacular-and different from vintage to vintage, the 2003 more Burgundian, the 2005 more a California berry-bomb-but he will also teach you the ins-and-outs of winemaking as if you’d signed up for a course from UC Davis. But Vern (you’ll call him Vern by tasting’s end), a retired Oakland fire captain, is much more entertaining than any class. Visit toulousevineyards.com.

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