Friday, February 16, 2018

02/16 MIKE & VALERIE THOMPSON, THOMPSON 31FIFTY WINES, JOSH PHELPS, GROUNDED WINE CO, COLLUSION' RED WINE FROM WASHINGTON STATE

MIKE & VALERIE THOMPSON - FOUNDERS, THOMPSON 31FIFTY WINES

THE NEWEST BOUTIQUE WINERY IN HEALDSBURG, RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY, CA

WINES:
2015 Cicero Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 
This wine is our newest creation.  This exceptional and full-bodied single vineyard wine was aged for 19 months in 100% new French oak barrels.  Our inspiration for this wine was a quote from the revered Roman statesman and orator, Cicero, who stated that “life is nothing without friendship.”  We wholeheartedly agree!  Our tasting notes include hints of dark berries, cooked red fruits, cinnamon, molasses, dried fruit, strawberry and cranberry.  Cicero is seductive on the nose and has a lovely texture and finish covering the entire palate.  Excitement runs through our senses each time we sample this special bottling of a Pommard clone.  95 cases bottled.  $80 per bottle.  Available by the 3 pack or case.

2015 Thompson 31Fifty Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 
This wine was aged for 18 months in 65% new French oak barrels.  It is silky and opens exquisitely in the glass.  Our tasting notes include hints of bright raspberry, ripe cherry, black plum, baked fruits, cocoa, black olive and a long finish with structured acidity.  This wine will continue to drink well over the next five to seven years.   225 cases bottled.  $60 per bottle.  Available by the 3 pack, case of 1.5L.


JOSH PHELPS - WINEMAKER/OWNER, GROUNDED WINE CO - DEBUTS 'COLLUSION' RED WINE FROM WASHINGTON STATE

ABOUT JOSH PHELPS
Josh's roots run deep in Napa, raised in a winemaking family, he was exposed to the industry from a young age, starting his very first endeavor in the wine world, "Napa Valet", at age 15. He continued to build his knowledge of the business through college, selling wine, working the harvest and creating wine for friends with his father, Chris Phelps (of Dominus Estate). As a Napa local, his philosophies on winemaking and business are advised the luminaries of the wine world he calls his mentors and friends like Joel Gott, Kimberly Jones and Leslie Rudd, and of course, his own father.

With Grounded Wine Co., Josh hopes to build on this legacy and make his own splash in the wine world while exposing wine drinkers of his own generation to his hometown in wine country. Working with trusted farmers and childhood friends, his company reflects his deep understanding of wine, one that can only be developed growing up around the vines. He has been named to Forbes's 30 under 30 list, along with Zagat's 30 under 30 and Wine Enthusiast's 40 under 40 - though one of his proudest accomplishments is still the Eagle Scout badge he earned at the age of 18.

ABOUT GROUNDED WINE CO
Grounded in heritage, grounded in soil, grounded in simplicity - Grounded Wine Co.'s mission is to create wines that evoke a sense of place. Intriguing, clean, balanced, and accessible, Grounded Wine Co. produces terroir-driven wines with an emphasis on quality and experience.

Grounded Wine Co. is the personal brand of Napa native Josh Phelps, built to reflect his experience growing up in wine country, and his relationships in the wine community. A grassroots, all-American, wine label, the wines feature grapes from trusted, sustainable vineyards in the U.S. and showcase what it means to be a winemaker today.


Friday, February 9, 2018

02/09 WORLD OF PINOT NOIR, KATY ROGERS, SOUTH COAST JACKSON FAMILY WINES, JONATHAN NAGY, BYRON, GREG BREWER, BREWER CLIFTON WINERY

WORLD OF PINOT NOIR IS RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER. WE HAVE ALL THE DETAILS AND EVENT INFO ON TONIGHT'S WHAT'S COOKIN' ON WINE SHOW!

WORLD OF PINOT NOIR
March 2-3, 2018
RITZ-CARLTON BACARA
Santa Barbara, California

The annual World of Pinot Noir event gathers the planet’s foremost Pinot Noir wineries and winemakers, renowned chefs, sommeliers and leading wine scholars in a weekend-long seaside celebration of this delicious and storied wine.

Each year more than 200 Pinot Noir producers from around the world convene on California’s coast to share and discuss their wines. Santa Barbara is blessed with a climate that provides fresh fare year-round; taste how our talented chefs pair their most creative, locally focused dishes with Pinot Noir from around the world.


TONIGHT'S SPECIAL GUESTS ARE:

KATY ROGERS - DIRECTOR OF DTC – SOUTH COAST JACKSON FAMILY WINES
JONATHAN NAGY – WINEMAKER, BYRON WINES
GREG BREWER - FOUNDER/WINEMAKER, BREWER CLIFTON WINERY



Friday, January 5, 2018

01/05 JEFF KUNDE, KUNDE FAMILY WINERY, GREG BREWER, BREWER CLIFTON WINERY

JEFF KUNDE - KUNDE FAMILY WINERY

For over a century, five generations of the Kunde Family have farmed our 1,850 acre-estate in the heart of Sonoma Valley—a truly remarkable legacy in the modern age of California winemaking. A fervent, forward-thinking vision of land stewardship and sustainability began over one hundred years ago, and has been shaped with each successive generation.

Today, Kunde Family Winery is still family owned and operated with a hands-on team of 4th and 5th generation family members at the helm. At the end of the day, every decision we make, every wine we craft, and every experience we provide honors the legacy of founder Louis Kunde, who emigrated from Germany and purchased the original Wildwood Vineyards ranch at the turn of the century in 1904. Cresting the second century was a profound milestone for the family. Moving forward, we remain committed to innovation and state-of-the-art facilities, while also maintaining a deep, personal commitment to sustainable winegrowing and preserving the land for generations to come.




GREG BREWER - FOUNDER, WINEMAKER, BREWER CLIFTON WINERY

FROM HUMBLE BEGINNINGS…
Over 20 years ago two young aspiring winemakers met, each bringing a vision and a drive to produce world-class wine. Focusing on the Burgundian roots of pinot noir and chardonnay, they paid homage to France. They were keen on making their own footprint and forging a style that was uniquely Californian. The wines embrace the power, pedigree and richness of the Sta. Rita Hills, that has become the trademark of Brewer–Clifton.

In 1995, Greg Brewer and Steve Clifton met while working on a committee meeting for the Santa Barbara Vintners’ Association. At the time both held production jobs at Sunstone and Beckmen, respectively, and forged an immediate friendship that would ultimately germinate in the creation of Brewer-Clifton just one year later.

Saving modest disposable income over a period of twelve months, $12,000 was set aside and fruit contracts secured to produce an inaugural 240 cases of wine within Santa Barbara Winery where Greg held the role of assistant winemaker in 1996. Always having their sights locked on an area that they would personally later map and define as the Sta. Rita Hills, they utilized relationships in the neighboring Santa Maria Valley for the majority of their fruit as vineyards were being developed closer to home. One exception to that adjacent provenance was Sweeney Canyon which Brewer-Clifton produced without interruption from 1996 through 2011.

When considering a logo and label, a priority was something that would not run the risk of being dated and that could remain timeless. The Wine Cask restaurant in Santa Barbara was an incubator for food and wine professionals during that time, and the hand stenciled gold ceiling of the dining room proved to be an ideal and subtle reference to carry through that message of tradition and region. A few exposures with a disposable camera then developed, photocopied and colored in with a black Sharpie pen and the brand took flight..

After brief periods being housed within other wineries of employ, Brewer-Clifton created their first stand alone facility in what would become Lompoc’s “Wine Ghetto” in 2000. Nestled immediately between the local legend Rick Longoria and the upstart Sea Smoke, Y2K was a pivotal impasse both for B-C and Sta. Rita Hills which was identified and approved as an American Viticultural Area (AVA) that same year.

Fueled by unbridled confidence and unprecedented media attention, Brewer-Clifton swiftly sought to better secure vineyard provenance which gave birth to their farming company shepherded by Francisco Ramirez in 2005. Greg and Francisco developed, planted and built Melville vineyard and winery in the mid 1990s and the decade working together there fostered the elite vineyard team that would eventually create Brewer-Clifton’s estate vineyards, which now includes sixty acres across four separate parcels within the AVA.

2012 marked the first vintage where all the fruit produced hailed from estate vineyards within appellation. That year The Wine Spectator deemed the 2012 Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir as the #8 Wine of the Year, picked from all the wines submitted to the publication from the entire world.

In 2017, Brewer-Clifton joined Jackson Family Wines, a company equally committed to singular, site-specific, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Greg Brewer notes, “The Jackson family maintains a commitment to world-class wines, a respect for nature and vision for uncompromising quality that’s very much aligned with our philosophy, I’m confident our collective strengths will further propel the Sta. Rita Hills on the global stage of fine wines.





Friday, December 29, 2017

12/29 STEVE GLOSSNER, PASO PORT, PER CASO WINE AND PENDRAYS SPIRITS, DAVID TEIG, POMONA FAIRPLEX

STEVE GLOSSNER - OWNER, WINEMAKER & DISTILLER - PASO PORT, PER CASO WINE AND PENDRAYS SPIRITS

PasoPort
Created by winemaker, Steve Glossner and his business partner & wife Lola. Steve has a long history of winemaking in Paso Robles.  He started his career at Justin in 1994 and then worked for Adelaida Cellars & Halter Ranch before turning to consulting and starting PasoPort. PasoPort is a ten year old family winery with production of about 1500 cases focusing on port-style wines. Our bottles are branded with original artwork in the style of the 1940’s and 50’s.  In 2013 the winery purchased an alembic pot still for the purpose of producing our own brandy to fortify the port-style wines.

Per Caso
In 2014 PasoPort acquired Per Caso Cellars. Steve has been Per Caso's winemaker since day one and began making wines for Per Caso back in 07. Per Caso's wine portfolio consists of several single varietal & blended red & white wines.

Pendray’s Distillery
The newest addition to the PasoPort family of brands,‘Pendray’s Distillery’, named after Lola’s maiden name and originating from Cornwall England, ‘Pendray’ which is Cornish, is a race of people with a rich Celtic heritage and an indomitable fighting spirit who inhabited the Southwest of England. Having a distillery was always part of the business plan for PasoPort, in fact, we had a distillery in mind when we made the first port for PasoPort, it just took a little time to accomplish.  In 2013, we purchased a 500 liter German pot still from Holstein.  Now, in our fourth year of distilling, we are in full production of spirits for sipping, mixing and fortifying our port wines.   Our portfolio currently consists of Port Barrel Aged Brandy's and Grappa's along with a few seasonal fruit based Liqueurs.  To see our current selection of spirits click on the below button "Check out our Spirits".


DAVID TEIG - MANAGING DIRECTOR OF AGRICULTURE AND HOSPITALITY, FAIRPLEX

DINING AT THE FAIRPLEX:

The Farm at Fairplex
The Farm at Fairplex is a five-acre organic working farm located on the campus of Fairplex, home of the LA County Fair and more than 300 year-round events. With more than 150 California specialty crops, The Farm serves as a community educational component of The Learning Centers at Fairplex and as an abundant garden whose seasonal bounty is used in the delicious cuisine of McKinley's Grille and the Sheraton Fairplex Hotel & Conference Center's catering menu. The Farm at Fairplex also features al fresco dining at its finest. Farm events feature custom menus inspired by in-season herbs, fruits and vegetables harvested from our organically grown five acres of plantings.

McKinley's Bar
Catch up with friends, family or co-workers over drinks at McKinley's Bar.  Enjoy a variety of featured drinks and light appetizers with good company and a casual environment.

McKinley's Grille
A perfect blend of Southern California style and food can be found at this popular Pomona restaurant.  Enjoy a menu with something for every appetite.  From dinner with friends or family to a business lunch, McKinley's offers a great atmosphere with a casually sophisticated menu.


Friday, December 22, 2017

12/22 SPRETI VALENTE, CS - WINE BUYER, CONSULTANT & EDUCATOR

SPRETI VALENTE, CS - WINE BUYER, CONSULTANT & EDUCATOR 

Spreti Valente, Certified Sommelier is the senior wine buyer for Anne’s Boutique Wines in Costa Mesa, California since 2008.    Spreti specializes in finding the best small-production wines the world has to offer.  These wines can be found in the retail floor and wine bar at Anne’s Boutique Wines.  In addition, she procures the wines that are featured in the three wine clubs she manages. 

Anne’s Boutique Wines was voted 2017’s Best Wine Shop in Orange County.  Voted by the general public.

ANNE’S BOUTIQUE WINES
Anne’s Boutique Wines is a wine shop located in the heart of coastal Orange County.  With an incredible selection of small production wines, hard-to-find wines in a super-friendly atmosphere. Wine tastings are conducted three times a week and boasts a by-the-glass wine list that rivals many restaurants.  Our shop maintains a database on each client’s palate to further enhance their wine enjoyment experience.   Our wine club is “avant-garde” in style, to educate and introduce our members to new wines and varietals from all around the world.  Many famous winemakers host events in our tasting room each month.  We are on our 6th year in business.

Anne’s Boutique Wines is a known as “Orange County’s Best Kept Secret” in the top five “BEST WINE SHOP” by Orange County’s City Voter. (2nd to HiTimes)

Friday, December 15, 2017

12/15 PAUL COKER, STONEHILL TAVERN, THE FORBES FOUR-STAR MICHAEL MINA RESTAURANT AT THE ST. REGIS MONARCH BEACH RESORT

PAUL COKER  LEAD SOMMELIER AT STONEHILL TAVERN, THE FORBES FOUR-STAR MICHAEL MINA RESTAURANT AT THE ST. REGIS MONARCH BEACH RESORT

Paul Coker is the lead sommelier at Stonehill Tavern, the Forbes Four-Star Michael Mina restaurant at the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort. Coker has an Advanced Sommelier certificate, and oversees a wine selection of more than 700 bottles with a focus on boutique producers in the California wine regions.

Prior to becoming a sommelier, Coker spent seven years as a cook and leverages his culinary background to create wine pairings on a molecular level. His fresh, fun approach to wine is easily accessible to aficionados and novices alike. Coker is ingrained in the Orange County community having worked at several local restaurants. In his free time, Coker enjoys playing hockey, mountain biking and reading.

“Sometimes people make too big a deal of it. We want wine to be fun,” said Paul. “My goal is for people to try something new, shift their paradigm a little, but ultimately have a great night enjoying delicious food and wine.”

STONEHILL TAVERN AT ST. REGIS, MONARCH BEACH
Open for dinner only, Stonehill Tavern at The St. Regis Monarch Beach is Michael Mina's acclaimed restaurant, offering tavern fare in a casual yet sophisticated setting. Guests of the Forbes Four-Star Stonehill Tavern enjoy a one-of-a-kind dining experience, including modern American cuisine that features seasonal ingredients and contemporary twists on classic tavern dishes. Under the direction of Wine Director Rajat Parr, Stonehill Tavern presents a wine selection of 400 to 500 bottles with a focus on boutique producers in the California wine regions. Stonehill Tavern was designed by celebrated international designer Tony Chi, whose striking d├ęcor and artful melding of interior dining and terrace seating provides an inviting visual expression of the outdoor way of life that represents California.

WWW.STREGISMB.COM

Friday, December 1, 2017

12/01 DAVE PRAMUK, ROBERT BIALE VINEYARDS, FRED SCHERRER, SCHERRER WINERY

DAVE PRAMUK - CO-FOUNDER, SALES, MARKETING, COMMUNICATIONS OF ROBERT BIALE VINEYARDS

A lifelong friend and schoolmate of Bob Biale, Dave is from a family of eight children and was raised in Napa, attending local schools.  At Napa Valley College he played for the Golden West Conference championship tennis team. At CSU Chico, he graduated with a degree in Developmental Psychology, and also studied Journalism and European Studies. An in-depth wine appreciation class and subsequent travels across Europe changed his life. Since 1982, he has worked for several Napa Valley wineries in winery-direct sales, hospitality, public relations, and production: Sterling, Carneros Creek, Clos du Val, Clos Pegase, Kendall Jackson, Cardinale and Lokoya. He has also worked as a wine broker in Napa and Sonoma. Dave has a love for the history of Zinfandel and Petite Sirah and their unique place in American wine. The Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley is Napa’s newest subappellation and Dave contributes as a board member and marketing advisor to advance education and promotion of the district. As Co-Proprietor of Robert Biale Vineyards he directs the winery’s Sales, Marketing, and Public Relations – writing and traveling and “spreading the gospel” of Zinfandel and Petite Sirah.

FRED SCHERRER - OWNER/WINEMAKER, SCHERRER WINERY

Since our small winery’s first vintage in 1991, our goal has been to create handcrafted, full-flavored wines that express the personality of the unique Sonoma County vineyards where they are grown. Fred first became known for Zinfandel from his father’s Alexander Valley vineyard, and now his careful hand with Pinot Noir from the Russian River and Sonoma County has quietly gained attention and a steady following. That same attention has made Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Grenache that exemplify the bounty of Sonoma County vineyards.