Controversial study. What camp are you in?

Is Wine Country the canary in the coal mine when it comes to global warming? A new, controversial study by a federal agency reports that U.S. temperatures could increase by 2 to 4 degrees by 2020. This, some argue, could lead to a remapping of wine regions, shrinking vineyard land in Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino counties. In light of this new study, I’m reposting my point counterpoint blog with two respected winemakers so we can take the pulse of Wine Country. There are, after all, two distinct camps when it comes to this issue -- one that spots actual proof while the other doesn’t see a trace. So let the fireworks begin. Remember, you’re just a click away from having your unmitigated say.

By | October 7th, 2011|3 Comments

Harvest Fair is changing things up

Harvest Fair is changing things up. In a nutshell, here are the biggest changes to the Sonoma County Harvest Fair this year: 1) There will be no Awards Night Gala for the public. Instead there will be a new event for the public called the Grand Tasting, and it will be on Friday, Sept. 30, the opening day of the fair. Here people can taste the award-winning wines and foods and have greater access to the chefs and vintners/owners who make them. 2) The winners of the three-day wine competition, among other awards, will be announced at a new event for the industry called the Sonoma County Harvest Awards dinner and it will be on Saturday, Sept. 24.

By | September 1st, 2011|2 Comments

Kosta Browne, the story behind the story

The winery makes class act pinot noir, among other varietals, and it is so revered that it has a waiting list of 8,000. But as co-founder Dan Kosta put it. “There was a lot of work leading up to our ‘overnight success’ in 2005. It's kind of like pro athletes making their jobs look easy. What people don't see are the years of preparation, holding multiple jobs, hitting the streets constantly and near-failing numerous times.”

By | August 24th, 2011|0 Comments

From the Streets to the Stove

At the Greens Cook Off at Vision Cellars last Saturday there was one contestant who went the extra mile – literally. Chef Jeff Henderson rode his Harley Davison from Las Vegas to Sonoma County, then shopped and cooked late into the night, waking up at 5 a.m. to finish his [...]

By | August 22nd, 2011|0 Comments

New stats on women as winemakers in California

New research reveals that the glass ceiling has not yet been shattered. Only 9.8 percent of California wineries have a woman winemaker as its lead or primary winemaker. Who knew? The 9.8 percent statistic is surprising, a skewed perception because of the high profile of women in Sonoma and Napa.

By | August 17th, 2011|0 Comments

Attention Harvest Shoppers …

There’s a new retail store in Windsor that will intrigue those fascinated with fermenting. At the Gusmer Harvest Store there's even a lab where wine geeks can watch on as techs monitor sulfite levels in fermenting juice, among other things. Intriguing stuff, eh? You bet.

By | August 11th, 2011|0 Comments

The vegan and the hunter

I'm working on an interesting story right now called the Vegan and the Hunter. The husband hunts while the wife refuses to eat any of the "dead things" in the freezer. They've been together for decades so they're learning to tolerate their eating habits. No one is storming off, in other words.

By | August 8th, 2011|2 Comments

Reality star cashes in …

People are keeping an eye on “Bachelorette” runner-up Ben Flajnik and his next moves … wondering what’s the financial reality behind Reality TV? Just what’s the going rate for fame?

By | August 4th, 2011|7 Comments

Winesong … pencil this in

The 27th annual Winesong is Sept. 9th and 10th (www.winesong.org) and the highpoint is the tasting at the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens. Here you can sip through hundreds of pours, with wine converging from distant places -- Italy, Chile, South Africa, Napa, Sonoma, Sierra Foothills, Oregon and Washington State, to name a few.

By | July 25th, 2011|0 Comments

Bachelorette suitor has the edge

Sonoma winemaker Ben Flajnik is now one of three courting Ashley Herbert on ABC’s The Bachelorette, the reality T.V. show that makes a contest out of romance. Just his luck, winery owner Flajnik has something the other contestants don’t have -- vino otherwise known as “bottled poetry.”

By | July 20th, 2011|1 Comment