Supporting independent craft wineries.

1704, 2024

Sabar Wine Estate – ‘A small hill of great wines’

By |April 17, 2024|Categories: Business and Operations, Digest, Featured, Industry, Marketing and Sales, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Founded in 2009 by Gábor Ádám, Sabar Wine Estate is a small producer – only 7 hectares – located on Sabar Hill (hence the name) in the Badacsony wine region, part of the Lake Balaton area. […]

1004, 2024

Németh János Pincészet

By |April 10, 2024|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, Marketing and Sales, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

While the family’s winemaking tradition in the Iván Valley of Hungary’s Szekszárd region dates back four generations, János Németh is considered one of the area's young, up-and-coming producers.

2503, 2024

Erdevik Estate – ‘A synergy of traditional and modern winemaking’

By |March 25, 2024|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Erdevik Estate’s single vineyard block of 40 hectares is located on the 45th parallel in Serbia’s Fruška Gora region (like Bordeaux in France and Piedmont in Italy). […]

1703, 2024

Don Melchor – ‘One story, one terroir, one wine’

By |March 17, 2024|Categories: Business and Operations, Commentary, Digest, Featured, Industry, Local Wine Events, Marketing and Sales, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

As Viña Don Melchor celebrates the release of its 2021 vintage – its 35th – I had the opportunity to meet, taste with, and interview Enrique Tirado, the technical director (director of winemaking) and CEO of this iconic, singular wine for the past 27 years – at Napa’s Compline restaurant in January 2024. […]

403, 2024

Tajna Rizling Vlašský Zobor 2022

By |March 4, 2024|Categories: Marketing and Sales, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In 2008, husband and wife Rastislav Demeš and Anetta Demešová purchased and began replanting one of Slovakia’s historic vineyards in the Nitra region and Vrábel district – whose winegrowing tradition dates back to the 12th century – naming the winery Tajna (secret in Slovak), after the nearby village of Tajná. […]

2902, 2024

Marcelo Papa – Amelia and Marqués de Casa Concha

By |February 29, 2024|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, Marketing and Sales, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In fall of 2023, the team at Viña Concha y Toro USA/Bonterra Organic Estates  – which represents and imports the Chilean wines into the United States – invited me to lunch at Napa’s Compline restaurant to dine and chat with longtime esteemed winemaker Marcelo Papa, the Technical Director (Director of Winemaking) overseeing two of the company’s most prestigious portfolios, Amelia and Marqués de Casa Concha.

1902, 2024

Benedek Pince – Third-generation winemaker Péter Benedek carries on his family’s legacy

By |February 19, 2024|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, Marketing and Sales, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In the village of Gyöngyöstarján in Hungary’s Mátra region, third-generation winemaker Péter Benedek carries on his family’s legacy in his grandfather’s original cellar, along with the assistance of his parents, who help care for the vineyards. […]

3101, 2024

Merlot: It’s (expletive) fine!

By |January 31, 2024|Categories: California, Commentary, Featured, Industry, Local Wine Events, Marketing and Sales, News, Origin Stories, Washington|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

"Merlot: It's (expletive) fine,” exclaimed Jonathan Cristaldi, the moderator for “Merlot Renaissance: Celebrating Two Decades Beyond Sideways,” at the annual Unified Wine & Grape Symposium in Sacramento January 23-25.

2901, 2024

U.S. wine journalist Dr. Elizabeth Smith remembers Slovakia

By |January 29, 2024|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, Marketing and Sales, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In July 2023, wine journalist Dr. Elizabeth Smith visited Slovakia as a guest of Rastislav Demeš, owner of Tajna Winery. Across two and a half days, she visited three producers, the country’s famed grape breeder, and participated in a Riesling Vlašský and Dunaj masterclass. The editor of the Slovak wine magazine časopis Vinotéka, Ing. Juraj Mikula, interviewed Elizabeth about her visit, and published the Slovak-language article in the December 2023/January 2024 issue. With the magazine’s permission to republish, below is the English version.

2501, 2024

Press Release: Information, Research and Discussions Highlight Wine and Winegrape Industry’s Largest Gathering

By |January 25, 2024|Categories: Business and Operations, California, Digest, Featured, Industry, Local Wine Events, Marketing and Sales, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

SACRAMENTO, CA, JANUARY 25, 2024 From every corner of the world, wine and winegrape professionals convened at the 30th annual Unified Wine & Grape Symposium this week in Sacramento. […]

1409, 2023

Foothill Wine Festival Competition Announces Results

By |September 14, 2023|Categories: California, Digest, Featured, Industry, Local Wine Events, News|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

The Foothill Wine Festival team is pleased to announce the results of the 2023 competition sponsored by Choose Folsom. The competition was held in Folsom on September 9th and 10th. […]

1209, 2023

Matt Parish – Wine Industry Mentor

By |September 12, 2023|Categories: California, Digest, Featured, Industry, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Matt Parish has decades of wine business experience as a senior winemaker at Constellation, Treasury, and Naked Wines USA, but in my eyes, it is his kindness that makes him one of my favorite wine industry mentors. […]

1906, 2023

Dominic Mantei – Winemaking Adventurer

By |June 19, 2023|Categories: Digest, Industry, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Northern California native Dominic Mantei embraces the adventure of making wine at Kaya Vineyard and Winery in Georgia’s Dahlonega Plateau. […]

904, 2023

Beneduce Vineyards – Fear not the Umlaut

By |April 9, 2023|Categories: Digest, Featured, Industry, News, Origin Stories|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

In February 2023, I traveled to New Jersey to visit a few of their top wineries. One was Beneduce Vineyards, where I met owner/farmer/winemaker Mike Beneduce for a comprehensive – and impressive – portfolio tasting – plus an engaging conversation about winegrowing and winemaking. […]

304, 2023

The 4th Annual International Cabernet Franc Competition Announces Results

By |April 3, 2023|Categories: California, Featured, Industry, Local Wine Events, News|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

The 4th Annual Cabernet Franc Competition, founded and sponsored by Michael Kelly of California Wines & Wineries, took place on Wednesday, March 29, 2023 at The Golf Club at Copper Valley in Copperopolis, California. […]

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.

Go to Top