’98 La Grande Dame and Popeye’s: My Definition Of A Perfect Meal.

Friday! Fun Friday! Yes! More funny wine pictures below. Thank you to those who sent pictures in!

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I think the best Fun Friday drink would HAVE to be champagne. Bubbles have a way of lighting up a night. It has something to do with the little bits of excitement climbing out of our glasses. So, what can you eat everyday that will accentuate champagne? Fried chicken! Imagine this: open a ’98 La Grande Dame with a couple friends – not too many friends, this is a great bottle – and devour a 12-piece bucket of Popeye’s. The acidity in champagne pairs perfectly with the fatty greasiness of the fried chicken; it’s like a match made in wine heaven! Other great bubble pairs include Fritos and potato chips. I went to a champagne tasting last December and the first thing we were out of was Fritos! Later, expensive cheeses and meat trays. Hello, fried chicken and Fritos! (Don’t tell my dietician).

Should be a nice weekend for a run here in the Valley. My advice: bring your own water.

Update on our progress with Wine To Water: I spoke with the Director of Wine with Wine to Water yesterday. We are in the process of creating a partnership with Wine To Water, allowing us to donate a percentage of our proceeds to the organization as well as host tasting events (Pinot and Pizza, Champagne and Fried Chicken!) to raise money to help their cause. I challenge our readers to find something you that inspires you towards change, wine-related or not, and act on it. Send us your stories for your chance to win a bottle of our limited release 2011 Pinot Noir. Like I said yesterday, we cannot underestimate what we are capable of when we find something we believe in. One person can change the world.

Have a great weekend! Happy sipping!


There is no passion to be found playing small, settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.
Nelson Mandela

A Wine’s Aura: Who Creates It?

Friday Eve! Below are a few picture from early this morning up at Antica Napa Valley. We will be producing our wine at this amazing facility. A special thank you to Nate, winemaker at Antica, for allowing me to run around with my camera this morning! Seeing the fruit for the first time was very exciting. Véraison has just started! The countdown for harvest has officially started! This is going to be a great year for Pinot (weather permitting, fingers crossed)!

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I read a very intriguing article yesterday about wine and its complexity. Or should I say, perceived complexity. The article touches on the role of critics have on the aura created around wine and how wine writers amplify this aura. I think wine’s aura may have first been created by winery owners in order to justify charging what they charge for a bottle of wine, but everyone, me, you, winemakers, wine critics, all add to a wine’s aura now. Champagne aficionados are probably the biggest culprits of all, with their product being the sole wine style which stands for celebrations. Its something about those little bubbles and the **clink clink** of glasses that creates a slightly “holier than thou” feeling about champagne. But hey, I am not saying I don’t like feel slightly richer than I am when I open a bottle of La Grande Dame. Its the fun of wine and champagne: when we sip it, we can live in the moment, forget about our troubles and cherish the nectar of the gods and those whom we share it with.


What is the definition of a good wine? It should start and end with a smile.
William Sokolin