Archive for February, 2010

A Woman’s Touch: A Conversation with Theresa Heredia of Freestone Vineyards

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The California Pinot Noirs that tend to draw the attention of the critics and enthusiasts are ones that are single vineyard bottlings that stick their chest out and claim to be terroir-driven. In truth, the wines are often highly extracted, high in alcohol, generously oaked, and darkly colored, so loud and powerful that terroir is lost in all of the pumped-up glamor. Really good Pinot Noir should not only taste like Pinot Noir, it should have refinement, breeding, subtlety, and suaveness, but above all else, it should show a sense of place by exhibiting terroir. Winemaker Theresa Heredia of Freestone Vineyards is a proponent of terroir, and she is dedicated to bringing out the regional typicity of the Freestone estate vineyards located in the extreme Sonoma Coast.

Despite the importance of the place where a wine is made, the ambition and talent of the person who made it is highly relevant to how that wine tastes. We all like to know about the personal idiosyncrasies and a winemaker’s take on the world. Those are the things that make wine different and special. Join us in a conversation with Theresa Heredia as the Grape Radio crew learns about her ambition and character and why her touch is guiding Freestone Vineyards to produce some of the most stunning terroir-driven Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays in California.

For more info on Freestone Vineyards: www.freestonevineyards.com

Sponsor: 2010 World of Pinot Noir: www.worldofpinotnoir.com

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Show #261
(59:35min 42MB)

The Wines of Shea Wine Cellars – A Tasting Review

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It should come as no surprise that one of our favorite things to do is taste wine. Well, Grape Radio’s Rusty Gaffney (aka, The Prince of Pinot) invited us to take part in a tasting of wines from Oregon’s Shea Vineyard – specifically, the wines made by Shea Wine Cellars from Estate fruit. It had almost been two years since we had last tasted a flight of wines from this vineyard (2005 vintage – Show 181), so we felt it was high time to take a look at them once again.

Although Oregon grows at least 15 or more varieties of wine grapes, it is the nearly 50,000 acres of Pinot Noir that gets the most attention. Pinot does quite well here, and 9 of the 16 AVAs (American Viticultural Area) in the state are planted to the famous grape of Burgundy. The largest amount of Pinot is in the northwest corner of the state in the Willamette Valley AVA, an area sufficiently diverse to have 7 sub-appellations within its boundaries. Shea Vineyard is located in the one of the Willamette sub-appellations, the Yamhill-Carlton District, officially established in 2005.

Planted by Dick and Deirdre Shea in 1989, the property is 200 acres of which 140 acres are planted to vineyards – 135 acres of Pinot and 5 acres of Chardonnay. The Willakenzie soils in this part of the state make it an ideal site for some world-class Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. After years of selling fruit to some of the West’s best known wineries, Dick and Deirdre founded Shea Wine Cellars in 1996, in order to produce wines from their Estate fruit.

Join us as we dig into 5 wines from the 2007 vintage, to swirl, sniff, and taste Oregon Pinot Noir from Shea Wine Cellars.

THE WINES:
2007 Shea Wine Cellars Willamette Valley Estate Pinot Noir
2007 Shea Wine Cellars Willamette Valley East Hill Pinot Noir
2007 Shea Wine Cellars Willamette Valley Pommard Clone Pinot Noir
2007 Shea Wine Cellars Willamette Valley Block 33 Pinot Noir
2005 Shea Wine Cellars Willamette Valley Homer Pinot Noir

For more info on Shea Wine Cellars: www.sheawinecellars.com

Sponsor: 2010 World of Pinot Noir: www.worldofpinotnoir.com

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Show #260
(29:34min 21MB)

Bitten by the Wine Bug

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Shane Finley had been bitten by the wine bug. So, in 2001 he decided to ditch the New York corporate insurance world and try his hand at something different – making wine. After contacting Wells Guthrie at Copain to ask about an opportunity to intern, Shane packed his worldly belongings and headed for California. The mentorship there would lead Shane to work a harvest in Australia, and travel to France to work with Pierre Gaillard in the Northern Rhône. After returning to California, Shane became cellarmaster at Copain, then assistant winemaker at Paul Hobbs, before finally taking his current position in 2006 at Kosta Browne.

As the associate winemaker at Kosta Browne winery, Shane works very closely with Michael Browne making world class Pinot Noir. It would seem, at this point, that he had possibly achieved most of his ambitions in the world of wine. Well, not entirely. It had been a great journey so far, but Shane wanted to begin a personal wine project – a label of his own. Of all the grapes he had worked with thus far, Syrah seemed to speak to him the most. Thus was born Shane Wine Cellars – his family project devoted to producing Syrah. In addition, Shane is making Pinot Noir under the Spell label, as a friends and family venture.

Join us as we talk with Shane about his philosophy and approach to winemaking – as well as his love for both Pinot Noir and Syrah.

For more info on Shane Cellars: www.shanewines.com

Sponsor: Wine Beserker: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #259
(55:59min 40MB)


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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.

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