Archive for the 'Discussion' Category

Vineyards of Sonoma County – with Charles Heintz

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Located in the Occidental region of Sonoma County, the Heintz Ranch has been owned by the Heintz family for nearly 100 years. Charlie’s grandparents purchased the land in 1912, and Charlie’s father farmed here. Apples remained in production until their first Chardonnay vineyard was planted in 1982. The family still maintains about 8 acres of apple orchard today.

Following in the footsteps of his father, Charlie began farming Heintz Ranch in 1984, and expanded the vineyards to include Pinot Noir and perhaps his personal favorite, Syrah. With a who’s who list of wineries like Littorai and Williams Selyem buying his grapes, Charlie Heintz couldn’t be prouder of his family’s accomplishments.

Join us as we talk with Charlie Heintz about viticulture and wine, and what it takes to be a premium winegrower.

For more info:

Charles Heintz Vineyards and Winery: www.heintzvineyards.com/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #369
(51:42 min 49.7 MB)

Wineries of Oregon – with White Rose Estate

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Greg Sanders will easily admit that he doesn’t do anything half-way. So, it didn’t seem like a big deal for him to venture to Oregon to buy some land. But then the land turned into a vineyard, and the vineyard into an Estate…and then there was the winery.

Planted in 1980 to own-rooted Pommard clone pinot noir, the 10-acre White Rose Vineyard is one of the oldest and most storied vineyards in Oregon. Located on east-southeast facing slopes of volcanic Jory soils in the heart of the Dundee Hills, the vineyard sits at the top of the hill at 870 feet elevation, overlooking much of the Willamette Valley.

In 2009, they acquired an additional 4 acres of vineyard immediately north of the original site. This vineyard, was planted in 2001 to Dijon clone 115 pinot noir grafted to American rootstock.

Join us as we talk with Greg about his journey – or, his JOURNEYS – into wine, pinot noir and the metaphysical. If you thought you were hooked on the minutia of wine, you haven’t heard anything yet.

For more info:

White Rose Estate: www.whiteroseestate.com/

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

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Show #368
(1:00:35 min 58.2 MB)

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A Beaujolais Primer

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Located north of Lyon in eastern France, the Beaujolais wine region overlaps Burgundy in the north and Rhône in the south. The steep Beaujolais vineyards run along the Saône River on mainly granite terrain. Only manual harvesting is allowed in the Beaujolais region, and the region has ideal growing conditions, receiving plenty of sunshine.

The Gamay Noir grape has existed since the 1300s in Burgundy, and a is a crossing of Pinot Noir and an ancient grape called Gauais Blanc. Gamay is used to make all Beaujolais wines with the exception of white Beaujolais, or Beaujolais blanc, which is made from Chardonnay grapes.

There are 12 different Beaujolais appellations, 10 of which are known as Crus. The Beaujolais Crus form a meandering path. From south to north, Brouilly is followed by Côte de Brouilly, Régnié, Morgon, Chiroubles, Fleurie, Moulin-à-Vent, Chénas, Juliénas and Saint-Amour.

Join us as we talk with Anthony Collet, Director of Marketing for Inter Beaujolais, about the region, its grapes and its wines.

For more info:
Discover Beaujolais: www.discoverbeaujolais.com/

Forbes article, mentioned during interview: “Six Exciting Wine Regions To Explore In 2014″ www.forbes.com

Sponsor: Millesima, Fine Wine Merchants: www.millesima-usa.com

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Show #367
(45:23 min 43.6 MB)

Wineries of Sonoma County – Sebastani

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It’s a rarity in these times of consulting rock-star winemakers that someone would actually stay at a single wine producer for any length of time. But that’s exactly what Mark Lyon did – for 35 years! Mark graduated with a B.S. in Fermentation Science from the University of California at Davis in 1978 and was hired by Sebastiani Vineyards the following year, where he continues to run the winemaking program.

Sebastiani’s first century in Sonoma winemaking began when Samuele emigrated from the Tuscany region of Italy in 1895 and started Sebastiani nine years later. The winery was the only one in Sonoma County to continue operations through Prohibition, making a small amount of sacramental and medicinal wines.

Shortly after Samuele’s death in 1944, his son, August, and August’s wife Sylvia purchased the winery from the estate and began the expansion of the facilities and the product line, adding new varietal wines and proprietary blends. When August died in 1980, Sylvia and their children, Sam, Don and Mary Ann, assumed management of the company. Sam stayed until 1986, when he left Sebastiani to start his own winery. In 2001, the family sold the winery to Constellation Brands, whereupon Don Sebastani left to devote more time to his own brand, which he started with brother-in-law Roy Cecchetti in 1985.

When Bill Foley purchased Sebastiani in 2008, he immediately undertook a program to boost wine quality and raise the winery’s image. Working closely with long-time winemaker Mark Lyon and the viticultural team, they lowered production, restricted yields, acquired more new barrels and winemaking equipment, revamped farming protocols and acquired additional vineyards to guarantee consistent and superior fruit sourcing.

Join us as we talk with winemaker Mark Lyon about Sebastani’s history and legacy, and why he still enjoys working for this iconic label.

For more info:

Sebastani: http://www.sebastiani.com/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #366
(46:36 min 44.8 MB)

The Wines of Burgundy – with Maison Louis Jadot

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The Louis Jadot name, as well as its readily identifiable label should be very familiar, even to casual wine lovers. Established by Louis Henry Denis Jadot in 1859 in the Burgundy region of France, Maison Louis Jadot has grown over the past 150 years to own 280 acres of the Côte d’Or’s most prestigious Premier and Grand Cru plots.

In 2010, chief winemaker Jacques Lardière retired after 42 years with Louis Jadot. Taking over the reins from Monsieur Lardière, winemaker Frédéric Barnier has been responsible for the entire winemaking team of Maison Louis Jadot since 2010.

Join us as we talk with Technical Director Frédéric Barnier about the challenges he’s faced, including the past few “short” vintages in Burgundy, current pricing, and the premox issue.

For more info:

Maison Louis Jadot: www.louisjadot.com

Louis Jadot Burgundies: www.louisjadot.com

Sponsor: Best Wines Online: www.bestwinesonline.com

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Show #365
(50:47 min 48.8 MB)

2014 World of Pinot Noir Seminar – Hollywood and the Vine

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We’re on to another of the seminars from the 2014 World of Pinot Noir. This one had something of a unique twist – combining Hollywood and wine…or Vine, in this case.

The focus here was to talk about wine themes in film by honoring two wine movies, Sideways and Somm. This was also the 10th anniversary of the release of Sideways, a movie that ‘launched a thousand Pinots,’ and allegedly put the brakes to Merlot’s ascendancy.

Moderated by Sunset Magazine’s wine editor, Sara Schneider, the panel included Hitching Post’s Frank Ostini and tasting room whiz Chris Burroughs representing Sideways, and sommeliers Brian McClintic and Dlynn Proctor featured in the movie Somm that chronicled their efforts to pass the prestigious Master Sommelier exam. Of course, this wasn’t confined to just talking, as each of the panelists were also expected to identify several wines blind to demonstrate their respective wine prowess. L’audace, l’audace, toujours l’audace!

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

Sponsor: Millesima, Fine Wine Merchants: www.millesima-usa.com

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Show #364
(1:55:10 min 110.6 MB)

Retrospective – 2005 Red Burgundy

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The 2005 vintage in Burgundy has been hailed as…dare we say, ‘the vintage of the century.’ Hyperbole? Maybe. But one thing’s for certain – it’s been a long time that a Burgundy vintage has been as highly regarded – maybe since 1978! The obvious question is – are they ready to drink yet? And if not now – when?

Join us as we talk about our tasting of four Villages wines and four Premier Cru wines from the vintage to see how the wines are evolving. We’ll taste them so you don’t have to!

The Wines:

Villages
05 Angerville Volnay
05 Michel Gaunox Beaune
05 Dujac Chambolle Musigny
05 de Villaine Mercurey Les Montots

1er Cru
05 Bouchard Clos St Marc 1er Nuit-St-Georges
05 Esmonin Estournelle St. Jacque 1er Gevrey-Chambertain
05 Angerville Volnay 1er
05 Chantal Lescure Vosne-Romanee 1er Les Suchots

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

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Show #363
(26:39 min 25.6 MB)

Wineries of the California Central Coast – with Chamisal Vineyards

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Located half-way between San Francisco and Los Angeles, the Edna Valley is recognized as one of the finest Central Coast grape growing regions in California, known in particular for Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Rhone grape varieties. With the Pacific Ocean just a few miles away, the coastal fog and breezes combine to create one of the longest growing seasons. The climate, combined with the calcareous and volcanic soils of the area, results in wines with concentration and balancing acidity.

In 1973 Chamisal became the first winery to plant vines in Edna Valley, a gamble that paved the way for one of the most revered wine regions of California. The vineyard is named for the native, white-flowered Chamise plant that thrives on the property. In the early 1990’s after a period of dormancy, the vineyard was replanted and the estate was renamed Domain Alfred. New ownership began in 2008 and restored the original name – Chamisal Vineyard – to honor its place in Edna Valley history.

Join us as we talk with Chamisal winemaker Fintan DuFresne about the history, the vineyards, and the wines. We’ll even taste the new un-oaked Pinot for you!

For more info:

Chamisal Vineyards: www.ChamisalVineyards.com

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

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Show #362
(42:29 min 40.8 MB)

2014 World of Pinot Noir Seminar – The Insider Wines of The Côte d’Or, Part 2

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We’re back with Part 2 of the Insider Wine seminar from the 2014 World of Pinot Noir. Previously held in the Central Coast city of Shell Beach, the event moved to the gorgeous Bacara Resort in Santa Barbara beginning this year.

In a return engagement from his outstanding Burgundy seminar at the 2013 WOPN, Don Kinnan, CSS, CWE, and the lead instructor for the French Wine Society’s new Master Burgundy Certificate program, led us through a few of these “insider” appellations, including Marsannay, Fixin, Pernand-Vergelesses, Savigny-Les-Beaune, Monthelie, Auxey-Duresses, Chassagne-Montrachet (a red!), Santenay, and the mountain of Corton. Of course, the seminar included a short history of the viticulture and principal vineyards and producers in each of these villages. Plus, 12 wines were selected to represent the best terroirs from these villages, and included a tasting of the 2005 Corton and 2006 Corton-Charlemagne.

Join us as we listen to Don Kinnan provide insight into the lesser sampled “insider wines” of Burgundy, all in Part 2 of: Insider Wines of the Côte d’Or.

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

Slide Presentation at WOPN: Don Kinnan Burgundy Seminar

Sponsor: Millesima, Fine Wine Merchants: www.millesima-usa.com

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Show #361
(57:27 min 55.2 MB)

2014 World of Pinot Noir Seminar – The Insider Wines of The Côte d’Or, Part 1

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One of the biggest thrills in wine, is finding bottles that perform above their price level. And, while Burgundy is not particularly known for bargains, there are still some excellent quality-to-price values to be found from several, shall we say, “less travelled” appellations and villages. These “insider wines” are often sought out by knowledgeable Burgundy enthusiasts who enjoy their value and pleasure, while saving their more expensive, high profile bottles for special occasions.

In a return engagement from his outstanding seminar at the 2013 WOPN, Don Kinnan, CSS, CWE, and the lead instructor for the French Wine Society’s new Master Burgundy Certificate program, led us through a few of these “insider” appellations, including Marsannay, Fixin, Pernand-Vergelesses, Savigny-Les-Beaune, Monthelie, Auxey-Duresses, Chassagne-Montrachet (a red!), Santenay, and the mountain of Corton, location of the Cote d’Or’s greatest expanse of Grand Cru vineyard acreage. Of course, the seminar also included a short history of the viticulture and principal vineyards and producers in each of these villages. Fortunately for us, 12 wines were selected to represent the best terroirs from these villages, which included a tasting of 2005 Corton and 2006 Corton-Charlemagne. Very nice touch!

So, join us as we listen to Don Kinnan give us insight into the lesser know “insider wines” of Burgundy, all in Part 1 of: Insider Wines of the Côte d’Or.

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

Slide Presentation at WOPN: Don Kinnan Burgundy Seminar

Sponsor: Millesima, Fine Wine Merchants: www.millesima-usa.com

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Show #360
(1:38:50 min 94.9 MB)

2013 Wine & Fire Seminar: Digging Deep – Clone 115

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The Sta. Rita Hills Winegrowers Alliance held its annual Wine & Fire event in August of 2013. The festivities began on Friday evening with a reception at the Sanford & Benedict barn (the former winery) in the Sanford & Benedict Vineyard, where over two dozen winemakers poured library wines and current releases from their Sta. Rita Hills appellation. People mingled from late afternoon through dusk and into dark, sampling the various wines. Saturday morning, it was seminar time. We began with a seminar on Chardonnay, followed by a rousing discussion of Pinot Clone 115. The evening featured a grand tasting on the grounds of the La Purisima Mission.

Join us as we listen to the last of two seminars – this one on Clone (aka Cultivar) 115. Six producers from six different Pinot Noir vineyards located throughout the Sta. Rita Hills AVA share their insights as to why this clone is a precious resource in their cellar. The panel includes discussion of: Cargassachi Vineyard, represented by Brandon Sparks-Gillis of Dragonette Cellars; Rancho La Viña Vineyard, represented by Kris Curran of D’Alfonso Curran; Rancho La Rinconada Vineyard, represented by Steve Fennell of Sanford Winery; Rio Vista Vineyard, represented by Norm Yost of Flying Goat Cellars; La Montagne Kessler-Haak Vineyard, represented by Kimberly Smith of La Montagne; Clos Pepe Vineyard, represented by Adam Lee of Siduri Wines; and Sebastiano Vineyard, represented by Bill Wathen of Foxen Winery, with Josh Raynolds from Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar doing the moderating.

For more info:

Sta. Rita Hills Wine Region: http://www.staritahills.com/
2014 Wine & Fire Event: www.staritahills.com/wine-fire/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #356
(49:28 min 47.5 MB)

Australia – What’s New?

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Wines from Australia are no stranger to most of us, roaring into the U.S. market with high demand back in the mid-to-late ‘90s. At least part of this seemingly sudden demand was driven by the interest in wines with high scores tendered by the Wine Advocate and Wine Spectator publications. Add in the fascination for New World wines from non-domestic sources, an affection for the name Shiraz, and wine labels featuring lots of “critters,” and you had a recipe for success.

Fast forward about 10 years or so, and it became evident that the landscape had changed. Not only were there fewer Australian wines on the shelves, but the more exclusive (and higher priced) wines seemed absent from the marketplace. There were also fewer in-store tastings of Australian wines, and in general, demand seemed to have declined. So, what happened, and where is Australian wine now?

Join us as we talk with Angela Slade, Director of Wine Australia, North America. We’ll cover the last couple of decades in Australian wine, as well as the current market shifts the folks from Oz are making.

For more info:

Wine Australia: www.wineaustralia.com/

Sponsor: Best Wines Online: www.bestwinesonline.com

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Show #358
(44:01 min 42.3MB)

Seldom Seen – Wines That Don’t Get Enough Face Time

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The world has been witnessing a lot of geo-political turmoil over the last several years. The “Arab Spring,” the “Orange Revolution,” people taking to the streets. Curiously, the wine world has also seen its share of turmoil. We’ve heard about the “natural wine” movement, the “In Pursuit of Balance” organization, and Robert Parker stepping down as head of The Wine Advocate. There’s also been some ‘Balkanization’ of wine appellations, with splinter groups forming right and left, ostensibly to better tell their AVA’s story.

But, with chaos comes opportunity. And, in the midst of all this wine upheaval, many vintners have taken the opportunity to explore other grape varieties – those either outside the norm or otherwise not getting any love from the current wine critics. In a recent diatribe, Robert Parker dismissed many of these varieties as “rarely palatable” and “godforsaken.” Paying no heed to this admonition, vintners are continuing to expand their horizons by making wines from seldom seen old world varieties – varieties that do quite well in their native or even transplanted countries.

So, with a blend of acceptance and gratitude, we’ve decided to take a closer look at some wines made from seldom seen or unrecognized grapes. Join us as we sit down with the bestwinesonline.com guys, Kyle Meyer and Tristen Beamon to taste and talk about some of these wines. We think you’ll find that some assumptions are best put to bed.

For more info:

Best Wines Online: www.bestwinesonline.com

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #357
(1:00:17 min 57.9 MB)

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2013 Wine & Fire Seminar – There’s Gold in Them Thar Hills

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The Sta. Rita Hills Winegrowers Alliance held its annual Wine & Fire event in August of 2013. The festivities began on Friday evening with a reception at the Sanford & Benedict barn (the former winery) in the Sanford & Benedict Vineyard, where over two dozen winemakers poured library wines and current releases from their Sta. Rita Hills appellation. People mingled from late afternoon through dusk and into dark, sampling the various wines. Saturday morning, it was seminar time. We began with a seminar on Chardonnay, followed by a rousing discussion of Pinot Clone 115. The evening featured a grand tasting on the grounds of the La Purisima Mission.

Join us as we listen to the first of two seminars – this one on the future of Chardonnay in the Sta. Rita Hills. Could it be that this is actually better terroir for Chardonnay, rather than Pinot Noir? Panelists include: Steve Clifton (Brewer-Clifton), Ken Brown (Ken Brown Wines), Richard Sanford (Alma Rosa), Christine Bruce (Hilliard Bruce), Leslie Mead Renaud (Foley Estate Vineyards), and Antonio Moretti (Moretti Wines), with Josh Raynolds from Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar doing the moderating.

For more info:

Sta. Rita Hills Wine Region: http://www.staritahills.com/
2014 Wine & Fire Event: www.staritahills.com/wine-fire/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #356
(1:05:29 min 62.9 MB)

The Renaissance of Spirits – Gin

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Continuing our occasional focus on spirits, we now take a look at gin, a spirit which derives its predominant flavor from juniper berries (Juniperus communis). With origins in the Middle Ages, gin has evolved from an herbal medicine to point of major of commerce in the spirits industry. While the Dutch get credit for the invention of gin, it was Britain where it became a staple in both the military and with its citizenry – unfortunately, leading to a period of time in the early 1700s referred to as the Gin Craze.

Today’s gins now have various origins, styles, and flavor profiles, each revolving around juniper as the common ingredient, yet many also include myriad other botanicals as well. The list of classic cocktails that are made with gin is legion, including the: martini, gibson, gimlet, tom collins, south side, last word, and of course the ubiquitous gin & tonic.

Join us as we talk with Brady Caverly, owner of the Flintridge Proper (with over 220 gins) in La Cañada-Flintridge, and John Peet, bar tender at the Proper, about the origins and historical significance of gin. With Mr. Peet in the studio, we were quite fortunate to have our own personal bartender making many of the timeless cocktails for us to sip during our conversation about this classic spirit. If you thought you already knew everything about gin, get ready to be surprised! We’ve included some delicious cocktail photos as well.

For more info:

The Flintridge Proper: theproper.com

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

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Show #355
(1:03:77 min 60.6 MB)

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The Wines of Chablis – with Séguinot-Bordet

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Located in northeast France, the Chablis region was annexed by the Dukes of Burgundy in the fifteenth century. While it is considered the northernmost extension of the Burgundy wine region, it is separated from the Côte d’Or by the Morvan hills. In fact, the town of Beaune located is more than 62 miles away. This makes the region of Chablis relatively isolated from other winemaking regions. Ironically, the southern vineyards of the Champagne in the Aube department is actually its closest winemaking neighbor.

Historically Chablis was once considered part of the Champagne province, and the two regions share many climatic similarities. Chablis’ far northern location puts it at the extreme edge of sustainable viticulture – too much rain and a lower temperature produces wines quite high in acidity; too much heat produces wines that are flabby with too little acids. But, when the weather is right, the wines are stellar!

Join us as we speak with Jean-François Bordet about the Chablis region and his family’s thirteen generations in Chablis.

For more info:

Chablis Wine Region: www.chablis-wines.com
Domaine Séguinot-Botdet: www.seguinot-bordet.com/en/

Sponsor: Wine Berserkers: www.wineberserkers.com

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Show #354
(31:13 min 30 MB)

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The Wines of Verona – with Bertani Amarone

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One of the famous wine growing areas of Italy, the Verona region lies in the north of the country, half-way between Venice and Milan. There has always been a long wine-producing tradition here, which today boasts the largest number of DOC wines in the country, producing wines such as Valpolicella, Soave and Amarone.

Founded in 1857, the Cav. G.B. Bertani winery is still owned by family members. Join us as we talk with Bertani’s technical director Andrea Lonardi, about the history of Bertani and the wines of Verona – especially Amarone.

For more info:

Bertani Amarone: Bertani.net

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

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Show #353
(48:32 min 46.6 MB)

The Renaissance of Spirits – Rum

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Continuing our occasional focus on spirits, we now take a look at rum. Arguably the oldest of distilled spirits, rum is a bit unique in that it is made from a byproduct of other salable products (sugar cane and molasses), and actually may have more variety in its styles than other distilled spirits.

Rum appears to have its geographical origins in Southeast Asia, where the indigenous populations seemingly stumbled upon the conversion of sugar cane by-products to alcohol. Unlike other spirits where grain or berries may be involved, rum requires a specific climate type for its sugar cane “starter” – humidity! Which, in part, accounts for the abundance of rums emanating from the Caribbean.

Join us as we talk with Matt Robold, blogger, bar tender, educator and self-taught know-it-all about all things rum. Matt can be found behind the bar at 320 Main in Seal Beach, or heading the monthly meetings of Rum Society at Caña Rum Bar in Downtown Los Angeles or the Bartender’s Cabinet in Orange County, California. If you thought you already knew everything about rum, get ready to be schooled!

For more info:

The Rum Dood: rumdood.com

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

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Show #352
(1:03:77 min 60.6 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.