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Staff Favorites - Christie Cartwright
Christie Cartwright | Send Email | Subscribe to My Sommelier Service
I was first introduced to the fabulous world of California wine in Napa where I spent weekends bike riding and wine tasting with my parents up and down the Silverado Trail. Growing up in the East Bay Area it was only a hop...skip...jump away from wine country where my family would venture to relax and play every possible moment. It wasn't until my senior year at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo that I realized I had a passion for the wine industry. My first encounter with the working world of wine was my volunteer internship at Edna Valley Winery where I traveled to a number of tasting events with the marketing manager for the winery and realized I needed to get in the business. I added a minor in wine and viticulture to my communications studies major and ended up writing my thesis on the differences in wine marketing throughout a choice number of Paso Robles wineries. My first "real job" in the wine industry was at the smallest tasting room with the biggest personality in Paso Robles named Four Vines Winery. I worked there for almost three years while going to school and fell in love with not only central coast wines, but also with the business of sales and all those who loved, appreciated, and enjoyed our fruitful product. After graduation in 2007 I loved the central coast so much I decided to make a go for it and stay in this blissful paradise of beach and vines. I became fond very fond of making trips to Los Olivos and Santa Ynez valley quite often and in the mean time also became employed at Tolosa Winery in San Luis Obispo and 15 degrees wine bar in Templeton. In the summer of 2009 I decided to take a chance and move to Hollywood for more opportunity. Being from northern California I wanted to expand my horizons and see what the LA lifestyle was all about. I knew this was where I belonged the moment I stepped into this oasis of wine and cuisine. Never had I been to a place where I could find so many restaurants, bistros, wine bars, and the like within a 4 mile radius, and I don't have to get on the freeway! I'm in heaven. When I walked into the infamous K&L Hollywood Store it was love at first sight! I'm thrilled to be working here doing what I love, and love the incredible people here who share this passion and commitment with me.
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Ariston Aspasie Blanc de Blancs Brut Champagne
Review Date: 1-5-2011
Ariston has done it again! They have created a Blanc de Blanc Champagne that is so unique and special compared to all the typical blanc de blancs on the shelf. Right off the bat after the Champagne Pop you get a whiff of the aromas of fresh baked brie, ripe apple, and Gruyere fondue...followed by a mysterious mid-palate chalk full of minerals and body. This isn't your typical super racy and tight blanc de blanc. It is fully developed into a mature ready to drink state of mind. Finishes with caramelized fruit and nuts...Enjoy!!
Veuve du Vernay Brut
Review Date: 10-28-2010
The quintessential sparkler for all your Holiday Party needs! Crisp, Clean, and round on the mid palate with essence of citrus fruit and ripe pear. These bubbles from France wont leave you or your guests unsatisfied. Perfect also for Sunday Brunch with Mimosa's, or making your favorite "Champagne Cocktail". My favorite is St. Germain, Bubbles, Fever Tree Club Soda, and a hint of fresh lime! Can be served in a flute or on the rocks! Yum!
Nicolas Feuillatte Brut Réserve Champagne
Review Date: 10-3-2010
If you want a fantastic Champagne with a great reputation and uses better quality fruit than the beloved brand Veuve Clicquot! Feminine and rich, it brings a great balance and seamless effort on the palate. I've never tasted such great bubbles for under $30!
Marguet Pere et Fils "Cuvée Reserve" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 8-31-2010
I'm the biggest bubbles fan I know, and when I say this delightfully decadent bottle of bubbles tastes and feels like it could be easily worth a $60-$80 Champagne, I'm being very serious! If you're looking for something elegant and round with a touch of bold, masculine undertones, then you've hit the lottery! It is so incredibly versatile you can sip and savor on its own or pair it with a multitude of courses to enjoy throughout the evening. Super interesting yet approachable for all bubble loving palates!
Urbanite Cellars "Redart" Red Blend
Review Date: 1-18-2010
In this blend there's 40% Cabernet Sauvignon for structure and depth, 30% Syrah, for spice and complexity, 20% Zinfandel for berry fruit flavors, and 10% "Other" reds grapes that were chosen for their juicy, fruity flavor components and richness on the palate. Ripe blackberry and red currant flavors and spicy accents on the palate lend a very smooth and velvety mouthfeel and finish. The advantage of a multi-vintage wine is that it allows the winemaker the most freedom to select the best flavor components across vintages. This one marries ripe, young intense fruit flavors with more mellow, complex ones.
Saint Cosme "Little James' Basket Press" Vin de Table
Review Date: 10-24-2009
A lovely French table wine that serves up much more than expected for the price...I love it! Comprised of mostly Grenache and neither fined nor filtered, it bursts with blackberries, tobacco, spice and earthy mineral undertones that lend itself to developing beautifully in the glass throughout the evening. Amazingly complex and delightful to enjoy with or without cuisine. I enjoyed it with fresh foccacia bread drizzeled with organic olive oil, balsamic and black pepper!
Bruno Michel "Les Roses" Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 10-19-2009
A standout rosé from a boutique producer who is delivering everything and more for the most experienced Champagne afficianado to the novice taster. At K&L's Champagne tent event this year, this rosé stood out far beyond the rest of the competition. On the nose fresh strawberry and toast, followed by a rich yet delicate mid-palate and a finish of perfection! The grasping fresh fruit quality is insane without being overwhelming. The finesse and elegance of this French beauty is even more mind boggling. Enjoy this before the word gets out!
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