Supporting independent craft wineries.

102, 2023

Life-changing Tokaji Furmint

By |February 1, 2023|Categories: Digest, Featured, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , |

My introduction to Tokaji Furmint was in 2020 – the 2018 Wetzer Tokaji Furmint – a dry white with some botrytis influence made in a minimalist style (native yeast, unfiltered, unfined). I wrote about tasting it – and won one of the categories in the 2022 Hungarian Wines Web Wine Writing Competition. As a result of that win, I visited Hungary for the first time in August 2022 – a life-changing experience that further piqued my interest in Tokaji Furmint.  […]

2901, 2023

Mail Road Wines: Mt. Carmel Vineyard’s Contribution to the Thriving Santa Barbara Wine Scene

By |January 29, 2023|Categories: Featured, News|Tags: |

The Santa Barbara Wine Scene is thriving, with Mail Road Wines at the forefront. The project began as a phone call between winemaker friends Matt Dees and Michael Palmer discussing the idea of making wine from Mt. Carmel Vineyard. […]

2001, 2023

Villány Underground – Péter Bakonyi of Bakonyi Pincészet

By |January 20, 2023|Categories: Digest, Featured, News, Origin Stories, Q&A|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

The first day of my November 2022 trip to the annual Franc & Franc Forum in Villány, Hungary, we arrived late due to flight delays. Our guide asked my group if we wanted to skip the tastings to freshen up at the hotel and join everyone at dinner – or attend the tastings, but arrive at the first tasting a little late. I had been awake for about 36 hours, but I said yes to the tastings. […]

1012, 2022

Bells Up Winery – The End of the Beginning

By |December 10, 2022|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, Marketing and Sales, News, Oregon, Origin Stories, Q&A|Tags: , , , , , , |

In August 2021, I met Sara and Dave Specter of Bells Up Winery for the first time during a media visit that was a bit more formal – a sit-down tasting and interview with them both.

312, 2022

Youngberg Hill’s Wayne Bailey – Farmer First

By |December 3, 2022|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, News, Oregon, Origin Stories, Q&A|Tags: , , , , |

In late October 2022, I visited Youngberg Hill in Oregon’s McMinnville AVA. It is a gorgeous 50-acre property with a historic inn atop the hillside, surrounded by astounding views and meticulously farmed, organic and biodynamic vineyards planted to Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Gris.

112, 2022

7th FRANC & FRANC International Cabernet Franc Forum

By |December 1, 2022|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Fast forward to 2022. Villány is the primary red wine region of Hungary, which is becoming increasingly well known for producing its signature wine, Cabernet Franc, thanks to the area’s sub-Mediterranean climate, loess and clay soils, and innovative producers who are making Villányi Franc in a variety of styles.

2911, 2022

For the Love of Fog: Marine Layer Wines

By |November 29, 2022|Categories: News|Tags: |

Wine is largely a pilgrimage: both for the people who make it and for the people who seek to appreciate it. There are so many things to learn. Attending winetasting seminars with a group of winemakers who have different viewpoints yet many commonalities, is fodder for a fantastic learning experience, which is just what the audience got when they attended “Winemakers and Their Muses” at the 2022 Big Sur Food and Wine Festival held at the Alila Ventana resort in early November.

2111, 2022

Lenné Estate – Going in Blind

By |November 21, 2022|Categories: Digest, Industry, Marketing and Sales, News, Oregon, Origin Stories|Tags: |

Lutz, an Oregonian, began his career in Napa Valley in 1984, when he developed a taste for wine shortly after college. He worked at several well-known wineries, including Robert Mondavi. It was at Mondavi where Lutz and the Mondavi team would participate in staff blind tastings led by Robert himself.

1611, 2022

Montoliva: Family Style Italian Wines in the Heart of the North Sierra Foothills

By |November 16, 2022|Categories: Industry, News|Tags: |

For Mark Henry the journey into the wine business was twisty and turny to say the least.  After spending several years in the Army and getting a degree in Political Science, he decided to barrel-roll head first into the beer business. Why not?

1311, 2022

4th Annual International Cabernet Franc Wine Competition & Celebration

By |November 13, 2022|Categories: Industry, News|Tags: |

Who is this event for? For the 4th Annual Cabernet Franc Celebration, we have opened it up to both domestic and international producers of Cabernet Franc.

2110, 2022

Adelaida District:  Focusing on the Classic Varieties with an Eye Toward the Future of Paso Robles Wine

By |October 21, 2022|Categories: Industry, News|Tags: |

Located within the northwestern part of Paso Robles and situated at the southern end of the Santa Lucia Mountains, the Adelaida District AVA has quite a rich agriculture history.  Although the AVA was only recently established in 2014, the region has had grapes planted there going back a century.

2909, 2022

Vinoshipper: Spade & Sparrows successfully uses direct to consumer (DTC) sales as on-ramp to the 3-tier system

By |September 29, 2022|Categories: News|Tags: |

“We are incredibly grateful to have secured retail partners such as Target, Walmart & Total Wine. Vinoshipper has been a huge part in opening those doors for us”, stated Alex Lightman, Chief Operating Officer at Spade & Sparrows.

2209, 2022

Pride Mountain Vineyards: A Thoughtful Approach to High Elevation Grape Growing on Spring Mountain

By |September 22, 2022|Categories: Industry, News|Tags: |

In 1989, Jim and Carolyn Pride purchased the Historic Summit Ranch situated right on the Napa -Sonoma county line atop Spring Mountain establishing Pride Mountain Vineyards. As retirement was upon them, the Prides initially wanted to buy a vineyard from which they could sell grapes locally.

509, 2022

Winners of Wine Writing Contest Announced

By |September 5, 2022|Categories: Industry, News|Tags: |

WebWineWriting contest was launched by a Hungarian wine writer, but the competition is not exclusively about Hungarian wines, the topics are broader, what is more this year a video category was added as well. The award ceremony took place last week (25 August) at Pannonhalma Archabbey Winery in Hungary, within a wine event with 20 estates.

2608, 2022

Q and A with Elizabeth Smith by Carl Giavanti

By |August 26, 2022|Categories: Industry, News|

"I love delving into the personalities and history of the people behind the wine, winery, vineyards and/or brand and learning how they became enamored with a career in the industry — whether that be winemaking, winegrowing, winery ownership or management."

2408, 2022

VML: Wine, Magic and Joy – Tasting With Winemaker Ross Reedy

By |August 24, 2022|Categories: Industry, News|Tags: |

In the heart of Dry Creek Valley, on a 23-acre biodynamic vineyard and farm, two tasting rooms sit side by side next to the creek for which the Valley, a mecca for Zinfandel, is known.  Welcome to VML and Truett-Hurst, two brands under one company. The outdoors seating here is ample and so relaxing.  Tasting pods for up to 6 guests are set in a pleasant courtyard, each with shades and fans. Wind rustles the cottonwood and Russian thistles along the creekbed, mimicking the sound of running water.

408, 2022

Lula Cellars – The Deep End’s Hidden Gem Comes of Age

By |August 4, 2022|Categories: California, Digest, Featured, Industry, Marketing and Sales, News, Origin Stories|Tags: |

During a rare chilly and rainy, late-spring day, a friend and I stopped to taste the highly rated wines at Lula Cellars, a small producer in the cooler and foggier “Deep End” of Anderson Valley in Mendocino County.

1407, 2022

Boeger Winery: A Taste of High Elevation Italian Varieties With a Slice of History in El Dorado County

By |July 14, 2022|Categories: Featured, Industry, News|Tags: |

As Greg and Susan Boeger were venturing out into El Dorado County, situated in the Sierra Foothills of California, they stumbled upon an amazing property as they passed majestic pine trees and winding roads.  They came across a pear orchard that had all the intangibles for a winery.  There was already an irrigation system in place and buildings on the property that go back a century, including the remnants of a Zinfandel vineyard in the driveway.  Situated along Carson Road, the region already had 400,000 visitors a year passing by on their way to Apple Hill ranches.  This would become the core framework of Boeger Winery.

707, 2022

Vinoshipper: Why Consumers are Winning a Key Battle in the Wine Industry

By |July 7, 2022|Categories: Commentary, Industry, News|

Rhetoric is heating up about direct sales in the wine and spirits industry. As with many other industries, technology and the Internet are bringing inevitable changes that create friction for the establishment, in this case the Three Tier System that includes wholesalers and retailers, who also stand to benefit from the expansion of the market.

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