Check, Please! Bay Area reviews: Guiso Latin Fusion, Rich Table, Nyum Bai
Our first stop is the family-owned Guiso Latin Fusion in Healdsburg. It may be small in size, but the authentic Latin American and Caribbean flavors are grand! Next, we visit Rich Table in San Francisco, a sumptuous spot with an eclectic, seasonal, California-focused menu. Last but not least, our guests take us to Oakland's Nyum Bai where we’re transported to Cambodia with vibrant takes on the country's signature dishes.
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My name is Leslie Sbrocco and I'm the host of Check, Please! Bay Area. Each week, I will be sharing my tasting notes about the wine, beer, and spirits the guests and I drank on set during the taping of the show.
The rosés of La Vieille Ferme rank among the best values on the market for pink wines. Their bubbly is no exception. It’s a steal. A dry refreshing sparkler from the family behind southern France’s famed Chateau de Beaucastel, this is a quaffable pink. Made with classic Rhone varieties of Grenache Noir and Cinsault with a touch of Pinot Noir, it’s fruity, fresh and fun.
2018 Ricardo Santos Semillon, Mendoza, Argentina $16
Ricardo Santos – the former owner of Argentina’s Norton winery – is a leader in South American wine. As the first to export Malbec to the United States more than 30 years ago, he helped create the popular category. Now, he and his family lead his namesake label and are crafting this unoaked, crisp and juicy white from a 70-year-old vineyard. Semillon grapes are known in France and Australia, but this wine shows that Argentina is a place for delicious versions, too.
2017 Decoy Chardonnay, Sonoma County, California $20
As a longtime fan of just about everything Duckhorn does, it’s no surprise I find their Decoy Chardonnay among the best values in California wine. They use fruit grown across Sonoma to assemble a wine of complexity and approachability. A kiss of oak, a bit of richness, a streak of acidity are balanced in a seamless white.
Drink it alone for a 5 p.m. cocktail then pour yourself another glass for dinner with roast chicken salad or grilled salmon. It’s versatile, affordable and consistently a winner.
2015 Girard Artistry, Napa Valley, California $60
Girard is fast becoming a Napa Valley destination. With a modern winery built in Calistoga, it’s a place to seek out when visiting wine country. Don’t miss the wine and food pairing experience, which gives you an in-depth look at the tasty techniques used to brilliantly match bites and sips. Their flagship sip is the Artistry blend comprised of mostly Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with Malbec and Petit Verdot.
Layered with spicy aromas and dark fruit intensity, its structure and tannins allow for long aging. But, with an hour in a decanter and a steak by its side, this wine would be perfect to enjoy tonight.
2016 Groom Cellars Shiraz, Barossa Valley, Australia $38
Daryl Groom is one of my favorite people in the wine industry. An Aussie who captures the joy of wine (and life), he has successfully worked for some of the top global brands including Penfolds. He left the corporate world a number of years ago and works on several passion projects including Groom Cellars with his wife, Lisa. Their Barossa Valley Shiraz captures the lush style the region is known for but tempers it by highlighting the spicy, bright nature of the variety. This is a classy red for lovers of Shiraz.
Michter's Single Barrel Straight Rye Whiskey, Kentucky $48
Rye whiskey is undergoing a renaissance in America. Since colonial times, rye has been the grain of choice for making whiskey. It fell out of favor as corn took over for sweeter spirit styles, but Rye is back! This single barrel from Michter’s is a modern classic. Spicy, smoky and smooth, it’s aged in toasted new American white oak barrels imparting caramel and butterscotch notes. Ideal for cocktails or just for fireside sipping, Michter’s is a top-notch American whiskey producer to know.
Thirsty for more beverage advice? You can find some of my wine, beer and spirits tips for you here.