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About this Episode

Maria Valetta, wine educator, and certified sommelier, and Robert Tas dare to review the wine list at Hell’s Kitchen, a Chef Gordon Ramsay restaurant in Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas.  Among many of the stellar wines, Maria suggests are a bottle of bubbles from the UK and a beautiful example of an all-chardonnay sparkling wine made in the champagne method, a Burgundy made in the Champagne style, a value wine from Australia that showcases a little-known varietal, and a wine from the king of pinot noir vines.

Wines reviewed include:

  • 2017 Domaine Tempier, Bandol, France

  • 2017 Foley Johnson, Rutherford, Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 

  • 2014 Three Sticks Gap’s Crown Pinot, Napa Valley

Transcript: Hell's Kitchen, Las Vegas

Hell’s Kitchen

RT): Hi Everyone, welcome back to CorkRules! The wine APP & podcast that’s here to help YOU navigate all your FAVORITE restaurant wine lists.

I’m your host, Robert Tas, along with Maria Valetta, wine educator, and certified sommelier, also known as Maria The Wine Blonde on Instagram. Welcome back Maria

MV: It’s time for us to raise some hell in this restaurant kitchen! Now that’s a big hint…

RT: haha… that’s a great clue about our Podcast wine list review today which is hot hot hot!!!!.....because We are talking all about wines at Gordan Ramsey’s Hell’s Kitchen, a restaurant in Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. The floor-to-ceiling windows surround you in this expansive room of reds and blues, while the open kitchen fires up the heat with lots of red and orange flames. With Chef Gordan Ramsey’s numerous signature dishes on offer, you are sure to find a favorite here but we highly recommend Chef's favorite dish, the Beef Wellington. So Get ready for a fiery experience!

Maria why don’t you go ahead and fire off the best wines on this list…

MV: Hey I always like to turn up the heat so I say let’s do that with a bottle of bubbly!

I always say There's no better way to get toasty while sipping on something

toast-worthy like some bubbles! So let’s do it with the Gusbourne, blanc de blancs, 2011 brut, a beautiful example of an all-chardonnay sparkling wine made in the champagne method, however, this wine hails from the UK  just like chef Ramsey Himself… although this beauty is grown and produced in London versus  Chef who’s home town country is Scotland. The Gusborne wine estate has received over 200 awards at international competitions for their wines. Incredible really. Just order it!

RT: Wow over 200 awards.. impressive REALLY .. time to start hunting down English sparkling for my wine cellar !

MV: I agree 100 percent…and while this runs along the lines of a premium option at Hell’s Kitchen, a great value sparkling that they have from France is the JCB

Nº 21 by Jean-Charles Boissset, Cremant d’Bourgogne, Burgundy, a mix of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir made in the champagne style but this is from Burgundy, not Champagne up more north.

RT: still a great option I think…. Now sticking with value wines can you point us in the direction of your favorites in White, or Rose, and red still wine categories?

MV: I can surely do that… I’d say step away from chardonnay and try something fun like the 2017 Tahbilk, Nagambie Lakes Marsanne,  from Central Victoria, , a white grape from southern Rhone France that’s interesting enough also growing in Victoria Australia and not only is it grown here but it has been growing here since the 1860s and this winery has the largest Marsanne vineyard planted area in the world (I read this in Jancis Robinson’s Grapes book a tomb of a book just on all the grae varietals out there)  …. and yes she mentions Tahblilk…this producer one specific about this grape being grown in Australia so you know we have a quality wine here…

RT: Okay so anything Jancis Robinson mentions I would definitely try… I mean, she is an icon when it comes to wine…

MV: Oh yes… I do love her and maybe someday I’ll also get your attention Robert…for my wine recommendations…

RT: oh stop,…..I didn’t mean it like that… haha MARIA… you know how much I value your wine opinions … In fact I’d love to hear YOUR RED PICK in the value category…

MV: HMMM>>> Okay so my old world, value wine recommendation is the Domaine Tempier, Bandol, 2017 mourvedre/grenache/cinsault, red blend from the south of France

And my new world wine pick at Hell’s Kitchen is the Foley Johnson, Rutherford, 2017 95 Cabernet Sauvignon, a Napa Valley Winery with incredible views from the Foley Family Wines portfolio that’s for sure going to be a favorite at the dinner table. In fact, I just did a reel on my Instagram from my wine-tasting visit at this winery, so get it if you get a chance check it out so you can see how beautiful it is and let me know what you think..

RT: Great call, I’m a fan of both of those producers.

And so what do you suggest in the “next-level” category? I mean… Chef Ramsey likes it hot in the kitchen so we need some wines that can throw down!

MV: I get that… he’s a force that I would not reckon with but I sure love his restaurants! So, let’s see we need a wine to match all that heat… hmmm. Pinot Noir Fans rejoice… here’s a vineyard that literally is the Kings of Pinot Noir Vines in Cali… the Gap’s Crown Vineyard,  so look for it on labels like in this case, with the 2014 Three Sticks Gap’s Crown Pinot $170.. won’t totally break the bank, but it IS a wine worth talking about and spending the extra money on…so I had to mention it.. I collect Three Sticks wines – love them all.

BUT NOW for a big bang, high-end, hell raisin’, great vintage wine… this is it… the Chateau Cos d’Estournel, St. Estephe, 2000 825 a Bordeaux blend, and not a bad price given the wine we are talking about here and what you would normally see for restaurant markups

This is predominately Cab Sauvignon, this fantastic Bordeaux vintage is still showing beautifully after all these years… but you have to be the type of person who appreciates older wines and all those tertiary aromas and flavors that come with it.. I would recommend that you have this with chef Gordan Ramsey’s signature beef wellington, let this be the highlight of you night.


RT: Will DO… on that high note, thank you Maria for talking Wine at Hell’s Kitchen at  Ceasar’s Palace  Las Vegas, and thank you, everyone, for joining us on another episode of CorkRules. Be sure to download the app from the Appstore and start getting your personal restaurant wine recommendations directly to your phone. You can find more wine educational tips from Maria on Instagram @mariathewineblonde and on the CorkRules app.

MV: It’s here! The CorkRules App! Download it for free today from the app store so you can browse restaurant wine lists, connect with your friends, and start drinking wines you love. 

Have a favorite wine List? Let us review it here. Send us your requests at info@CorkRules.com You can find previous episodes on your favorite podcast platform and on The CorkRules app. Be sure to follow @CorkRules on Instagram for episode updates. Prices and selections subject to change, please drink responsibly.








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