Hugh Sisson

Host, Cellar Notes

As General Partner of Clipper City Brewing Company, L.P., Hugh J. Sisson is among Baltimore's premier authorities on craft brewing and a former manager of the state's first pub brewery, Sissons, located in Federal Hill.  A fifth generation Baltimorean, Hugh has been involved in all aspects of craft brewing.

In the mid-eighties, Hugh Sisson saw the potential for a small brewery in Baltimore, an historically "big beer" town. After researching the industry at its heart - in Germany, England, and the U.S. west coast - Hugh, with the help of Senator George W. Della, Jr., successfully lobbied the Maryland General Assembly to pass legislation required to open a brew pub in Maryland.

After the inception of craft brew in Baltimore, Hugh immersed himself in the development and market recognition of both Sisson's and its beers.  He is a member of the Master Brewers Association of America, the Institute for Fermentation and Brewing Studies, and sits on the Executive Committee for the Brewers Association of Maryland.  He has served as President of the Cross Street Irregulars Home Brew Club and along with Al Spoler, he has been co-hosting Cellar Notes since 1992.

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Cellar Notes
6:28 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Brothers and Sisters (A red and a white from the same producer) - 8/6/14

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

4 Vines Naked Chard "Unoaked" Santa Barbara 2012   **  $
(Great value in complex unoaked chard.)

4 Vines "Truant" Zinfandel "old vines," California 2011  ** $
(Fruity zin with good flavors, excellent with barbecue sauce.)    

Sean Minor Chardonnay, Central Coast 2012 **  $
(Very good for the money, style and flavor.)

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Cellar Notes
9:13 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

Big Red Blends...All $20 or Under! - 7/30/14

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine
        
Open Range Red Wine, California 2010  *1/2  $  
(well balanced, informal, a pizza wine)

Austin Hope "The Troublemaker", California, NV  **1/2   $
(A very good bargain for a masterful blend.)

Ch. Ste. Michelle "Indian Wells" Red Blend, Columbia Valley 2010  **1/2 $
(A classy, well sculptured red based on merlot, excellent value.)

Milbrandt Vineyards "Brother's Blend", Columbia Valley 2011 * $
(Cotes du Rhone like, rustic and simple, good burger wine.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

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Cellar Notes
5:30 am
Wed July 23, 2014

California Pinot Noirs - 7/23/14

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

La Crema Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast  2012 *1/2  $$
(Light, fruity, rounded, good every day pinot noir.)

La Crema Pinot Noir, Monterey, 2012 **  $$
(A bigger, earthier pinot noir with good complexity.)

Wild Ridge Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast 2011  ***  $$
(Impressive, full bodied, well balanced, nuanced.)

Champ de Reves Pinot Noir, Anderson Valley 2011  *** $$
(Very complex, great body, very elegant.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Cellar Notes
8:50 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Chardonnays - 7/16/14

William Hill Chardonnay, North Coast 2012 * $
(Nice basic chard, nothing fancy.)

Landmark Vineyards Overlook Chardonnay, Sonoma County 2011  *1/2 $
(A touch of complexity, good mid-level chard.)

St. Supery Estate Chardonnay, oak-free, Napa ** $
(Very nice, idiosyncratic chard, seems "German" in style.)

Arrowood Chardonnay, Sonoma County 2010 **1/2  $
(One of the classics, a steal at this price.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Cellar Notes
11:33 pm
Tue July 8, 2014

Byron Winery - 7/9/14

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Byron Chardonnay, Santa Barbara '12  *  $
(Very nice entry level chardonnay, good value.)

Byron Pinot  Noir, Santa Barbara '12  *  $$
(Very good varietal character, great value.)

Byron Chardonnay, Santa Maria Valley '11  *** $$
(Creamy, rich, well balanced, textbook chard.)

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Cellar Notes
9:00 am
Wed July 2, 2014

Whiskeys Around the World - 7/2/14

Quality key:  * = good decent   ** = very good    *** = superb

Schniederweisss clear whiskey , Germany 1/2*  
(A curiosity)

Mackmyra "The First Edition", Sweeden *
(Decent)

Penderyn, Wales 1/2*
(Scotch-like, big rich flavor)

Reisterbauer, Austria 1/2*
(Bourbon-like, uninspired)

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Cellar Notes
5:30 am
Wed June 25, 2014

French Rosés - 6/25/14

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Whispering Angel, Cotes du Provence 2013 *1/2 $
(A charming well structured delicate rosé.)

Domaine de Corbillieres Rosé, Tourain 2013 *1/2 $
(Big soft rosé with nice fruit flavors.)

Commanderie de Peyrosol Rosé, Provence 2013 ** $
(Quintessential French rosé.)

La Manarine Rosé Cotes du Rhone 2013 * $
(Fuller bodied, with a bitter finish.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Cellar Notes
5:30 am
Wed June 18, 2014

Malbecs by Renacer - 6/18/14

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Punta Final Malbec, Mendoza '12  *1/2  $
(Very nice entry level malbec.)

Punta Final Reserva Malbec, Mendoza '11  **1/2 $$
(Dynamic, hedonistic, very impressive and satisfying.)

Enamore Malbec, Mendoza '11  *** $$
(A co-production with Allegrini of Italy, robust, very impressive.)

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Cellar Notes
9:19 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

American Syrah - 6/11/14

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Cline Syrah, Sonoma County 2009 ** $
(Very good value for a luscious red.)

Zaca Mesa Syrah, Santa Ynez Valley, 2008 **1/2 $
(Australian influence, has some age on it already.)

Corvidae "Lenore" Syrah, Columbia Valley 2009 ** $
(A good example of cool-country syrah.)

Earthquake Syrah, Lodi 2006 **1/2 $$
(A great California syrah with tons of flavor.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Cellar Notes
8:28 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Ponzi, Pioneer of Oregon - 6/4/14

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Ponzi Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley '13 *1/2 $
(Very good value in a Ponzi staple,  bright, elegant, crisp)

Ponzi Reserve Chardonnay, Willamette Valley '12 **  $$
(Subtle, firm, complex and delicate; typical quality Oregon chard)

Ponzi Pinot Noir, "Tavola" '12  ** $$
(Lean, balanced with good falvors)

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