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Tuesday, 06 September 2016 14:24

Jordan Winery Unveils Innovative Apiary

Jordan Chef and Flow Hive PicmonkeyChef Todd Knoll and one of Jordan's new hives

TASTE News Service, September 7, 2016 - Jordan Vineyard & Winery has announced the installation of its first apiary, which includes three Flow™ Hives, a crowdsourcing phenomenon from Australia that broke pledge records when the invention was unveiled last year.

David Coffaro PicmonkeyDavid CoffaroTASTE News Service, August 21, 2015  - Winegrowers of Dry Creek Valley (WDCV) expect the 2015 winegrape harvest to yield exceptional quality fruit in smaller quantities than the last three vintages, which were larger than normal throughout most of the state of California. Picking began earlier than usual this year, with David Coffaro Estate and Amista Vineyards harvesting grapes for their sparkling wines on July 29 and August 3, respectively. In 2014, Amista Vineyards harvested for their blanc de blanc two days later on August 5.

For still wines, many white grapes have already become ripe for picking. Preston Farm and Winery began harvesting Sauvignon Blanc on Tuesday, August 11. Pedroncelli Winery will harvest their Sauvignon Blanc this week. "This is within a few days of last year's harvest," says Montse Reece, winemaker at Pedroncelli Winery.

Cameron Mauritson, Manager of Mauritson Farms and President of the Winegrowers of Dry Creek Valley, anticipates starting to harvest in the middle of August, about 10-14 days ahead of last year. "We have been blessed with wonderful California weather that has sped things up. The crop looks beautiful with looser clusters than normal and small berries that should yield robust flavors. Winemakers should have the weather patterns to produce stylistic wines," he says.

MauritsonBoys and Thom 500 PicmonkeyCameron Mauritson (at left) with family at Maruritson FarmsRidge Vineyards reported their earliest zinfandel harvest on record in their East Bench Vineyard. "The dry, warm weather we had from February through April led to a very early bloom and thus the record start to the harvest," says Will Thomas, Ridge Vineyards' Sonoma County Viticulturist.

The harvest season will continue for the next two months, with the harvest of Bordeaux varieties including merlot and cabernet sauvignon in September and late-ripening grapes like Mourvèdre grapes and late-harvest Zinfandel in October.

Several years of drought in California affected farmers all over the state, but Dry Creek Valley winegrowers seize the opportunity to learn from the challenges they face. Mauritson explains, "The drought has been an opportunity for many growers to look closely at their soil health and make sure they are maximizing the available water holding capacity of the vineyard site so vines can survive as long as possible by natural rainfall."

Tim Bell, winemaker at Dry Creek Vineyard, says that last year at the winery's Endeavour Vineyard, they cut back on the number of vine shoots and grape clusters to reduce water demand, but were pleased to find out that they could get by with even less water than they planned for.

Despite the resilience of the grapes and their growers, many expressed hope for some relief from the drought. "We're praying that the El Niño predictions for a wet winter play out in the right way: plenty of rain spread out over time and cold enough storms to pack the Sierras with snow," says Bell.pedroncelli vineyards and winery picmonkeyPedroncelli vineyards and winery

Editor’s note:  The Dry Creek Valley has a grape growing history dating back to the 19th Century. Currently it is home to 60 wineries and 150 growers, most of them small, family-owned operations. Detailed information can be found at www.drycreekvalley.org.

If you’re planning a visit to this beautiful part of California during the 2015 harvest, we suggest you check out the Sonoma County listings in Taste California Travel’s Resource Directory. There you’ll find links to the websites of hundreds of Lodging and Dining options, as well as links to the sites of Wineries and even Craft Beer purveyors.

Thursday, 28 March 2013 23:06

March 29, 2013 Beer Pick of the Week

Black Racer IPA Bottle Picmonkey

Black Racer IPA


Producer: Bear Republic Brewing Company

Location: Cloverdale, California

Style: Black IPA

Alcohol: 8.1%

IBU's: 75+

Serving Style: 22-ounce bottles and in draft

Availability: Limited seasonal distribution on the West Coast and in some national markets beginning April 1st.

General Background: Co. HQ in Cloverdale, but their brewpub is in Healdsburg.


Appearance: “Black”

Aroma: “Too many smells coming from food cooking in the (adjacent) kitchen to be able to tell.”

Taste: “Has a creamy, Guinness-like style with the kick of an IPA—or vice versa. For a fan of British ales, it's a nice transition beer.”

Food Affinity: “I'm not very good doing beer and food pairing. But it does go well with those macaroni and cheese ball appetizers the kitchen is doing tonight.”

Al Eno Beer Reviewer Picmonkey



Reviewer Al Eno lives in Sacramento, California

and works for Apple in computer support.

Sunday, 06 January 2013 15:27

June 2-4, 2017 Healdsburg Jazz Festival

Region: North Coast    City: Healdsburg     Contact: www.healdsburgjazzfestival.org

Region:  North Coast     City: Healdsburg area     Contact: www.wineroad.com

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