2016 World of Pinot Noir Seminar – Southern Charm: the Pinots of New Zealand

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This seminar from the 2016 World of Pinot Noir features the winemakers from five New Zealand estates discussing the topography, geography, and growing conditions in some of the different regions of New Zealand – Waipara Valley, Central Otago, North Canterbury, and Marlborough.

Join us as we listen to Sara Schneider of Sunset Magazine monitor this fascinating seminar, featuring the Pinots of Greystone (known as Grey’s Peak in the U.S.), Maori Point, Mt. Beautiful, Mt. Difficulty, and Villa Maria.

For more info:
World of Pinot Noir: www.worldofpinotnoir.com/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #412
(01:10:16 min 67.5 MB)

Bordeaux Update

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Each year, about this time, the Bordelais begin releasing the prices for the latest or current vintage, thus offering the wine for sale as “futures.” This is usually the optimum time to buy the wine at its lowest price – with some caveats of course.

First, the wine won’t be released or delivered for another 18-24 months, so your money is tied up while awaiting your product. OTOH, you’re probably not going to drink it right away anyway, so where’s the harm.

Also, if the wine critics don’t score the wine well, there is a chance the original futures price may actually be higher than when the wine is released. So, doing your homework about the specific appellations within Bordeaux is an absolute necessity – that is, if you want to make successful purchases. OTOH, you can usually get expert advice from your trusted wine store.

So, join us as we sit down with the winex.com guys, Kyle Meyer and Tristen Beamon to talk about some of past vintages, along with what we can expect from the 2015 wines from Bordeaux.

For more info:

Wine Exchange: www.winex.com

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #411
(42:24 min 40.7 MB)

Wineries of Sonoma County – with Kosta Browne

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“It was just two of us, we didn’t know what we were getting into.” So begins the “Stories” section on the Kosta Browne website – and, probably the most understated of all winery start-up declarations. Today, as any competent pinophile knows, Kosta Browne is one of the most envied AND revered pinot producers in California. But, how’d they get that way? Well, therein lies our story.

Join us as we talk with Dan Kosta about Kosta Browne’s history and the future of one of the most successful starts in the wine business.

For more info:

Kosta Browne: www.kostabrowne.com/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #410
(55:16 min 53.1 MB)

Wineries of the California Central Coast – with Concannon Vineyard

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In 1883, with no prior knowledge of wine, much less wine growing, Irish immigrant James Concannon decided to plant a vineyard in the Livermore Valley, south of San Francisco. Importing Cabernet vines from Bordeaux’s Château Margaux, plans called for making sacramental wines, something that would see the family operation through the lean years of prohibition.

Years later, in 1965, his grandson Jim collaborated with UC Davis in selecting cuttings from one of those vines for heat treatment. These dynamic, virus-resistant vines later became known as Concannon Cabernet Clones 7, 8 and 11 and played a major role in helping California Cabernet achieve international recognition. Today, it is estimated that 80% of California’s Cabernet Sauvignon is planted with the Concannon Clones.

Join us as we talk with John Concannon about the history of Concannon Vineyard, the Livermore region, and how they’ve managed to become the longest family-run winery in California.

For more info:
Concannon Vineyard: www.concannonvineyard.com/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #409
(50:06 min 48.1 MB)

The Wines of Sicily – with Tenuta Rapitalà

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Rapitalà, which translates to “Beautiful Garden of God”, lies between the towns of Camporeale and Alcamo, in the northwest corner of Sicily. In 1968, French count, Hugues Bernard de la Gatinais, married Gigi Guarrasi, a descendant of a great family from Palermo. Together, they embarked on the renovation of the cellars and vineyards of the Guarrasi family’s Tenuta Rapitalà, an estate that had been destroyed by the Belice Valley earthquake of 1968. Today, the work started by Hugues and Gigi, is carried on by their son, Laurent, with the same care and passion.

The 555 acre vineyard slope that is Tenuta Rapitalà is characterized by gentle, undulating hills that start at 985 feet above sea level and gently climb to 1.965 feet above sea level that alternate between clay and sand.

Join us as we talk with Laurent de la Gatinais about the geography, the wines, and the history of Sicily.

For more info:

Tenuta Rapitala: tenuta-rapitala

Sponsor: Wine Exchange: www.winex.com

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Show #408
(38:08 min 36.6 MB)

Spirits from China – Baijiu

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Most people are familiar with distilled spirits such as vodka, gin, rum, and the like. However, there is a customary spirit from China that you may not be familiar with – Baijiu. Traditionally, baijiu was used to celebrate important events and welcome newcomers. Today, baijiu is a symbol for diplomacy and a way to celebrate life. It is consumed during celebratory situations as well as for casual daily consumption.

Baijiu has a verifiable history of over 600 hundred years, but a variety of historical records indicate that it has been central to the Chinese culture for much longer. Some scholars suggest that elements of what makes baijiu today have been in existence for over 2000 years.

Join us as we talk with (and sip with) Business Development Director Yuan Liu from CNS Imports, who will take us through this incredibly different beverage.

For more info:

CNS Imports: www.cnsimports.com/

Sponsor: Pinpoint Technologies – Your Business List Source: www.pinpoint-tech.com

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Show #407
(43:21 min 41.6 MB)

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Wineries of Anderson Valley – with Foursight Wines

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Located in the rolling hills of the coastal region of Mendocino County, Anderson Valley is about two hours north of San Francisco. The valley is about 16 miles long, ranging from less than 1/2 mile to about 1-1/2 miles wide, and is home to a unique group of vineyards and wineries working in Region 1 conditions – the coolest area where grapes can be commercially grown.

Here, 10-15 miles from the ocean, the days are warm and sunny while the nights and mornings are often cool and foggy. Winter lows can be in the 20’s or 30’s while summer highs can reach into the 80’s to 100’s. It is surrounded on three sides by rolling hills and low mountains (2,000 to 3,000 feet in elevation) and opens to the Pacific Ocean via the Navarro River canyon.

The fruit sources for Foursight Wines is the family’s Charles Vineyard. Established in 2001 by William and Nancy Charles, Charles Vineyard is located just southeast of the town of Boonville and is planted primarily to Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc.

Join us as we talk with Foursight winemaker Joe Webb about how he got started in wine, and his philosophy of making wines in the cool reaches of Mendocino County.

For more info:

Foursite Wines: www.foursitewines.com/

Anderson Valley Wines: www.avwines.com/

PinotFile reviews of Foursite Wines: www.princeofpinot.com/

Sponsor: Pinpoint Technologies – Your Business List Source: www.pinpoint-tech.com

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Show #406
(46:08 min 44.3 MB)

The Wines of Hungary – with Royal Tokaji

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Tokaji is the world’s original sweet white wine. Historically the wine and the region were called Tokay or even Tokai in English but the wine is more correctly referred to as Tokaji and the region as Tokaj. The Tokaji wine region also has the distinction of being the first in Europe to be classified.

At the end of the 17th century, Tokaji aszú wines were so well regarded throughout the Courts of Europe that Prince Rakoczi insisted on a classification of the finest vineyards around the 28 villages in the region into: Great First Growths, First Growths, Second Growths and Third Growths.

Moving forward in time, in 1993, Ben Howkins joined forces with Hugh Johnson, the world’s most published wine author, and Peter Vinding-Diers, a Danish-born Bordeaux winemaker, to found Royal Tokaji — the first non-Hungarian company to invest in the region. Royal Tokaji is a founding member of the Tokaji Renaissance, dedicated to re-establishing Tokaji aszú as one of the world’s greatest wines.

Join us as we talk with Ben about Tokaji – the region, the wine, and the history.

For more info:

Royal Tokaji: www.royal-tokaji.com/

Sponsor: Wine Exchange: www.winex.com

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Show #405
(51:42 min 49.7 MB)

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Wineries of Napa Valley – with Arcudi Wines

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It may seem like a long out-of-the-way journey from Massachusetts to France to California, but that’s what Tony Arcudi did. Arcudi spent 20 years working in computer-related fields, first as a missile navigation engineer aboard Navy submarines and later as a product manager for IBM. The transition from that to winemaker—working with wine greats such as Heidi Peterson Barrett and Maison M. Chapoutier, to ultimately launching his own wine brand, wasn’t an easy one.

Join us as we talk with Tony Arcudi about how he got started in wine, and what it’s like to join the fraternity of Napa Cabernet Sauvignon makers.

For more info:

Arcudi Wines: www.arcudiwines.com/

Sponsor: Pinpoint Technologies – Your Business List Source: www.pinpoint-tech.com

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Show #404
(36:00 min 34.6 MB)

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Maison Ilan – with Ray Walker

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Back in 2009, we spent some time talking to a young man from California who was headed to Burgundy to make wine …or more properly stated, to make Burgundy! Ray Walker has now been making wines in Nuits-Saint-Georges for the last seven vintages under his label, Maison Ilan. So, we thought we’d check in with Ray to have him reflect back on the wide ranging experiences he’s encountered, both the ups and the downs of making wine in France, and apparently more formidable, selling and delivering that wine to consumers in many countries, including the U.S.

Join us as we talk with Ray about Maison Ilan, the pitfalls he’s experienced, and how he views the future of his label.

For more info:
Maison Ilan: www.maisonilan.com/

Maison Ilan Store: store.maison-ilan.com/

Initial GrapeRadio.com interview with Ray Walker: “Young Winemaker Making the Leap to Burgundy”

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #403
(01:10:01 min 67.5 MB)

Petite Sirah – A Test Drive

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It all began in 1880 when Dr. François Durif, a grape botanist and grape breeder at the University of Montpellier in Southern France, released a new variety that he named after himself. It grew from a seed he extracted from fruit of the old French variety Peloursin. Dr. Durif didn’t know the pollen source at the time, but we now know that it was Syrah. The combination of Peloursin and Syrah resulted in fruit with saturated color and very dense fruit clusters.

Affectionately referred to as “Pet,” Petite Sirah became a mainstay in California around the 1900s, where plantings hit a zenith of 14,000 acres by the mid-1970s. As other varieties become more popular, Petite Sirah slipped into the role of a niche grape. Still popular to this day, it’s best known as a grape of intense color, flavor, and tannin.

Join the GrapeRadio bunch (Rusty, Eric, Brian, and Jay) as we comment while tasting through nine Petite Sirahs.

For more info:

Petite Sirah, I Love You: www.psiloveyou.org/

Sponsor: Pinpoint Technologies – Your Business List Source: www.pinpoint-tech.com

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Show #402
(51:03 min 49 MB)

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2015 World of Pinot Noir Seminar – The Wines of Domaine Marc Roy

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This seminar from the 2015 World of Pinot Noir is the perfect bookend to the “Latitudes and Longitudes” seminar, where we heard from Pinot producers from around the world. This time, we’re back to the “homeland” of Pinot Noir – France’s Burgundy region, and specifically the wines of Domaine Marc Roy in Gevrey-Chambertin.

Join us as we listen to Jancis Robinson speak with vigneron Alexandrine Roy, of Burgundy’s Domaine Marc Roy, about the vineyards and wines from recent vintages of this famed Gevrey-Chambertin producer.

For more info:
World of Pinot Noir: www.worldofpinotnoir.com/

Jancis Robinson: www.jancisrobinson.com/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #401
(01:03:01 min 60.5 MB)

The Many Shades of Pinot Noir

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Pinot Noir seems to be grown almost everywhere these days. Of course, we’re all familiar with Pinot from its ancestral home in Burgundy, as well as those from California, and of course Oregon. But, have you ever had Pinot from South Africa? Or, how about Pinot from Germany?

Given the many shades of Pinot, we’ve decided to take a closer look at some of the wines from various regions to smell and taste what there is alike about them, and how they differ from one another.

So, join us as we sit down with the winex.com guys, Kyle Meyer and Tristen Beamon to taste and talk about some of these wines. We think you’ll find that some assumptions may not ring true.

For more info:

Wine Exchange: www.winex.com

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #400
(55:31 min 53.3 MB)

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2015 World of Pinot Noir Seminar – Latitudes & Longitudes

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Originating from the Burgundy region of France, the pinot noir grape seems to have literally gotten a toehold in every corner of the globe. And, clonal material aside, it is the same grape that has been transplanted to these other climes. So, how does a reputedly fussy grape deal with the various climates and geology? And, how and why do the wines taste differently from each other? We’re glad you asked.

Join us as we listen to Jancis Robinson moderating a discussion by Pinot producers from around the world, as they describe their differing terroir and growing this “heartbreak grape.”

For more info:
World of Pinot Noir: www.worldofpinotnoir.com/

Jancis Robinson: www.jancisrobinson.com/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #399
(1:13:38 min 70.7 MB)

The Wines of Montalcino – with Fattoria dei Barbi

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Along with Biondi-Santi, the Colombini family helped build the reputation of Brunello di Montalcino as a wine of great quality and prestige worldwide. Fattoria dei Barbi is among the original producers of Brunello di Montalcino with bottles dating back to the 1892 vintage in its cellar.

The estate includes vineyards in Montalcino, Scansano and Chianti and covers a total of 756 acres, of which 193 acres are planted vineyards and the remaining land is dedicated to olive groves, woods, farmland and pastures. Fattoria dei Barbi’s holding are split between Montalcino and Scansano, owning 67 acres in Scansano and 110 acres in Montalcino, including the prized Vigna del Fiore vineyard, planted in 1939 and one of Montalcino’s oldest vineyards. At both the estates, yields are low and selection is intense – often only 60% of the potential production of Brunello is bottled while the remainder is declassified. Overall, the estate opts for a traditional vinification style, though the wines are very approachable on release.

Fattoria dei Barbi produces approximately 67,000 cases annually: 17,000 cases of Brunello di Montalcino, 8,000 cases of Rosso di Montalcino, 8,000 cases of Morellino di Scansano and 37,000 cases of IGT wines, including Brusco dei Barbi.

Join us as we talk with Raffaella Guidi Federzoni, export manager for Fattoria dei Barbi, about all things Brunello.

For more info:

Fattoria dei Barbi: www.fattoriadeibarbi.it/en/

Montalcino Blog by Barbi: http://montalcinoblog.com/2015/05/19/best-brunello/

Sponsor: Wine Exchange: www.winex.com

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Show #398
(51:13 min 49.2 MB)

2015 World of Pinot Noir Seminar – Gevrey-Chambertin vs Vosne Romanée

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The wines of Burgundy always elicit emotions – and frequently more than just the aromas and the flavors. In this seminar from the 2015 World of Pinot Noir, the two presenters conduct a mock trial to determine which of two Côte de Nuits powerhouses has the better wines. The case of Gevrey-Chambertin vs. Vosne Romanée will be determined by the jury (the audience, in this case). Unlike the result of most trials, despite the outcome, there’s really no loser here. It’s ALL Burgundy!

So, join us as we listen to Don Kinnan and Nick Poletto argue their respective cases for ‘who is best – Gevrey-Chambertin or Vosne Romanée?’

For more info:
World of Pinot Noir: www.worldofpinotnoir.com/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #397
(1:09:29 min 66.7 MB)

Wineries of Napa Valley – with Odette Estate Winery

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With their purchase of the Steltzner vineyard in 2012, the PlumpJack Group added the Odette Estate Winery to their portfolio. Although the Steltzner Vineyard’s first vintage was 1977, the vineyard was planted in 1965, making it the second vineyard planted to Cabernet in the District (after Nathan Fay).

Extensive work to both the vineyard as well as the production and hospitality facilities have been made, and the vineyards are now organically farmed.

Join us as we talk with winemaker Jeff Owens, about Napa Valley, the Stags Leap District, “green” wineries, and of course Cabernet Sauvignon.

For more info:

Odette Estate Winery: odetteestate.com/

Sponsor: Pinpoint Technologies – Your Business List Source: www.pinpoint-tech.com

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Show #396
(46:00 min 44.2 MB)

Wineries of Oregon – with Brooks Winery

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Brooks Winery was founded in 1998 by Portland native, Jimi Brooks. Like most of his counterparts in Oregon, Jimi had a pioneering spirit that carried through to his love of life and winemaking. Sadly, Jimi passed away in 2004 from an aortic aneurism.

In the aftermath of such tragedy, it speaks volumes for the Oregon wine community’s generosity and friendship that they approached Jimi’s sister, Janie Brooks Heuck, to ask her to take over the helm of the winery and continue Jimi’s legacy. In fact, the Brooks’ were one of the subjects of the recent film, American Wine Story: “After an upstart winemaker’s untimely death, his sister steps in to try and save his fledgling winery for his eight-year-old son: American Wine Story blends the story of Brooks with other tales of risk and reinvention in the American Wine Industry.”

Join us as we talk with Janie Brooks Heuck, Managing Director, about the love of family and community and its role in carrying on Jimi’s legacy for Brooks Winery.

For more info:

Brooks Winery: brookswine.com/
American Wine Story: americanwinestory.vhx.tv/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #395
(38:58 min 37.7 MB)


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GrapeRadio is a wine talk show. Show topics cover issues such as the enjoyment of wine, wine news and industry trends - the hallmark of the show is interviews with world class guest (winemakers, vineyards owners, wine retail / wholesale leaders, restaurateurs and sommeliers). The scope of the show is international so expect to hear many guests from around the world.

GrapeRadio has received numerous awards and honors including the 2008 James Beard Award for excellence in Journalism.

GrapeRadio has been the subject of numerous news reports by: The New York Times, Business Week, CNN, The Financial Times of London, and Wired Magazine.