The reluctant debutante

Vintner Lou Preston said his winery – Preston of Dry Creek – is the reluctant debutante of the valley when it comes to wine events.

By | September 22nd, 2009|0 Comments

The fuss over gold medal winners

The hot topic in Wine Country today is about truth in advertising when it comes to gold medal winners. A recent study of U.S. wine contests found little consistency from contest to contest regarding gold medal winners. The study focused on 13 U.S. wine competitions in 2003. Here’s what I have to say about this study: so what?

By | September 16th, 2009|2 Comments

An overnight success?

It may look like Kosta Browne, a Sonoma winery that makes striking pinot noir, was an overnight success. But the winery wasn’t always a multi-million dollar operation with the cachet to attract such high-powered investors.

By | September 15th, 2009|0 Comments

One Melnik Minute

Yes, I know, I know. You’re like most Americans, running approximately a day behind schedule. So let’s cut to the chase. Here’s your sixty second nugget of knowledge.

By | September 11th, 2009|1 Comment

Day trip for the history buff

Vintner Daryl Sattui, who also owns tourist-friendly V. Sattui Winery in St. Helena, spent 14 years and $30 million building Castello Di Amorosa, a 121,000-square-foot castle. A popular tourist destination, it’s also a working winery, producing a broad range of wines to explore.

By | September 11th, 2009|1 Comment

Tickets on sale for the Oscars? A close second.

Tickets are now on sale today for the Harvest Fair Awards Night Gala on Sept. 26 at $65 a pop. (www.harvestfair.org, 707-545-4203) Is it a black tie event? Well, this is Sonoma County, so you’ll find everything from Chiffon to blue jeans, wing tips to Birkenstocks.

By | September 10th, 2009|0 Comments

On a quest for his own cure.

Brandon Staglin, the son of vintners Shari and Garen Staglin, said he lives with schizophrenia “but like any significant part of one’s life, it can be a learning experience.” Brandon, now 37, is the impetus behind this Saturday’s 15th Annual Staglin Family Music Festival for Mental Health.

By | September 10th, 2009|0 Comments

Harvest travelers – day trip anyone? Here’s one for the movie buff.

In our occasional series on places not to be missed this harvest season, the Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Geyserville definitely makes the cut.

By | September 8th, 2009|0 Comments

A cocktail at Saturday’s Taste of Sonoma caught my eye.

At Saturday's Taste of Sonoma, a cocktail caught my eye. It was at the Cyrus restaurant booth and co-owner Nick Petyon was on hand to serve it, a test run of sorts because this week it debuts on the menu of the highbrow Healdsburg restaurant.

By | September 8th, 2009|1 Comment

Sex sells, especially when it’s controversial.

You recall that Cycles Gladiator was banned this summer from Alabama restaurants and retail stores by the Alabama Beverage Control Board, which deemed the label “pornographic.” But the brouhaha has apparently been good for sales, which are up by 26 percent in what is typically a slow time of year, says Head Poobah Bill Leigon, Hahn Family Wines President.

By | September 4th, 2009|0 Comments