Enforcement & Licensing Division
We have some spectacular events taking place during wine week. We have celebrity winemakers Richard Sanford and Jed Steele, along with Kevin Zraly, Author of Windows of the World will be here, he will be a great treat. There are some great things happening including more store events than ever before!
Richard Sanford, Legendary California Winemaker
Richard Sanford stands as a legend of California winemaking. Educated as a geologist, he traveled through California in the late 1960's in search of the perfect terroir to plant Pinot Noir. He found it on the north facing slopes along Santa Rosa Road, which would later become the heart of the famous Santa Rita Hills AVA in Santa Barbara. He was the first to plant vineyards there in 1969, and he spent the next thirty-five (35) years consistently producing some of this country's besst Pinot Noirs in every subsequent vintage. Winegrowing is a natural extension of Richard's lifelong interest in agriculture and the environment. In 1970, he planted the first Pinot Noir vineyard in the region of Sanford & Benedict Vineyard, and as others followed, he helped to establish the area now known as the Santa Rita Hills American Viticultural Area. In 1976, Richard met his future wife, Thekla Brumder, and in 1981 the two of them started Sanford Winery. Differences in business philosophy led to a separation from their namesake winery in 2005, and a decision to found the Alma Rosa Winery and Vineyard . As Richard explains, "My wife Thekla and I are focusing on what's more important to us; organic grape growing and sustainable business practices".
Richard was founding chairman of the Santa Rita Hills Wine Growers Alliance, the group responsible for obtaining formal designation of the Santa Rita Hills appellation. He is also co-founder of the American Institute of Wine and Food and is active with teh Santa Barbara Museum of Art and the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.
From my start as a cellar worker at Sony Hill in Napa Valley in 1968, to UC Davis for a Master's Degree in Enology, to starting Edmeades in the Anderson Valley and being there for ten years to the starting at Kendall-Jackson and working there for the first nine vintages of that wildly successful winery to the start of our own STEELE Wines in 1991, it has been an incredible ride.
During this time, I have been able to produce wines from just about every top quality wine region in the state, from Santa Barbara to Mendocino. The line-up of vineyards which we either own or from which we purchase grapes has evolved slowly over the years to where we consistently draw on some of the finest vineyards in California.
From viewing the actual number of wines we bottle, you might think we are large winery. However, this is not the case as we specialize in many wines where the final bottling is less than 1,000 cases. This reflects my never ending fascination with many different varietals and vineyard locations. This approach allows us to maintain the practice of true craftmanship in the production of our small lot bottlings.
Kevin Zraly, Author extraordinaire!
Author and Teacher of the Windows on the World Complete Wine Course. His book has sold over 2 million copies. He has taught over 17,000 students this course. He was wine director for the Windows on the World Restaurant atop New York's World Trade Center from 1976 until its destruction on September 11th, 2001. He is the recipient of the James Beard Award for wine and Spirits Professional of the Year. He is also the recipient of the European Wine Council Lifetime Achievement Award. Kevin has been featured in the NY Times, People Magazine, Wall Street Journal and USA Today.
The Hysterical, Philip di Belardino is back!
Due to medical reasons, Philip cannot join us for wine week this year. We wish him well, a speedy recovery and hope to see him next year.
Philippe di Belardino, Vice-President of Fine Wines at Banfi Vintners . Philip is often described as a stand-up comedian passing himself off as a wine connoisseur. Well, he is both! He claims that humor, usually self effacing, captures an audience's attention and holds it! Philip began his wine career in 1973 in his family's business, Meditterean Imports. He held a key position with the company when it was sold a decade later and continued as spokesman for an extensive and prestigious portfolio of European brands until he joined Banfi in 1999.
Returning again, we are glad Joseph is back!
In 2005, Joseph who is also an award-winning Sommelier and former wine-industry executive formed a boutique negociant firm with the intention of producing elegant, sophisticated and approachable world class wines from Napa Valley. Working with a team of winemakers, artists, coopers and small growers from Napa Valley, Joseph Carr Wines offer a portfolio of wines which are made for the discriminating consumer and targeted toward the fine dining restaurants and select wine shops. In February, 2006, Mr. Carr collaborated with Ted Edwards and released his limited production of Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. In less than five months this 2,500 case production sold out and has graced some of the best restaurant programs in the country.
Tony Cartlidge, President of Cartlidge & Browne Winery . Tony grew up in London, England. He has a unique combination of intellectual curiousity, adventurous spirit, and entrepreneurial drive. He's attended architectural school, driven antique furniture across Europe, led camping trips in the Soviet Union and North Africa, driven logging trucks and cement mixers in Oregon, Washington, and Alaska, and, started working in the wine business as a tour guide in the Napa Valley in 1979. The following year, he launced Cartildge & Browne.
Soren Christensen, Winemaker, Hope Family Wines . Soren Christensen has been with Hope Family Wines since 2000. Upon graduation from California State University Fullerton with a degree in Communications, he landed on the Central Coast. Having studied disciplines outside of wine and viticulture, it has been learning by doing in the truest sense of phrase. Soren credits the leadership and guidance of Austin Hope and Jason Diefenderfer as his duties have evolved over the years. Taking a sabbatical in early 2002 allowed Soren to travel to New Zealand and work a harvest for Villa Maria Estate. This opportunity offered invaluable experience and insight. Soren has traveled abroad extensively and continues to educate himself through studying and tasting wines from around the world. Excited about the direction of Raso Robles wines.
Louis de Coninck, Winemaker for Beaucanon Estate . Beaucanon Estate reflects the proud history and experience of the de Coninck family of St. Emilion. Located in beautiful Napa Valley, on the historic Longwood Ranch, our vineyards provide outstanding grapes that, with the blessing of nature and the knowledgeable hands of experienced Bordelaise winemaker, become epic and uncommon wines, expressing the intense fruit quality of California along with the balance and elegance of Bordeaux.
Tom Eddy, Owner, Winemaker of Tom Eddy Wines . The first vintage of Tom Eddy Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon was in 1991 but Tom has been in the wine business much longer than that. Tom graduated with a U.C. David degree in 1974 and did a requisite in a few big wineries and then settled in the North Coast as general manager and winemaker at Souverain Winery in Geyserville. Tom then accepted the task of revitalizing winemaking at Christian Brothers Winery in Napa. While buying grapes for Christian Brothers, Tom discovered many of the small quality conscious grape growers that he works with today. After more than 30 years of making wine in California, Tom settled in Calistoga.
George Foote, National Wine Educator, Ste Michelle Estate Wines. Mr. Foote has been involved with the wine industry since 1977, with a start-up in retail at the Liquor Shoppe LTD, Dennia, MA. From there he moved to the distribution venue working as a wine manager, on-premise manager and sales manager, with companies in the New England Markets.
In 1983, Mr. Foote graduated to a 20-year supplier career with Heublein/Diageo, spending 10-years managing distributors and sales territories and 10-years in Wine Education program development.
In 2004, Mr. Foote was appointed National Wine Educator for Ste. Michelle Wine Estates , the largest vineyard owner and producer of Washington wines, also with winery holdings in renowned areas of Napa Valley and Oregon. In 2006, Ste. Michelle Wine Estates was appointed importer for the Marchesi Antinori portfolio in the United States. Given the family history, individual estate properties, array of grape varieties and cultural diversity of Italian wine, the Antinori portfolio represents the pinnacle of premium wine in Europe.
Mr. Foote's responsibility as wine educator is to help develop and present the Ste. Michelle Wine Estates portfolio and story to a network of distributor sales organizations, trade partners, consumers and company sales, employees, in key markets. The "Washington Flyover", developed and updated by Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, is the primary presentation piece for information about Washington wines. An appellation driven, barrel component seminar series, focused on vineyard locations, grape varieties and winemaking techniques supports Washington information as well. Mr. Foote has also contributed to Ste. Michelle Wine Estates development of E-Learning programs that reach company sales employees and the national distributor sales network.
Mr. Foote is a graduate of Suffolk University in Boston with a major in Journalism. He is a Master Knight in the Brotherhood of the Knights of the Vine, a Continuing Education member of CIA, Society of Wine Educators and American Wine Society.
Sue Hofmann, Winemaker, DFV Wines . Sue Hofmann has had a love affair with wine since childhood. She was raised in California's Santa Clara Valley, now known as Silicon Valley, at a time when vineyards were more commonplace than tech startups. In fact, her childhood home was down the street from a winery. Sue recalls loading up her little red wagon with grapes as a little girl, hauling them home, and attempting to crush them and make her own wine.
Along the way, Sue's passion for winemaking took a back seat to society's expectations and have a "serious job" In college, she majored in Business and after graduation, worked in Banking and Finance for many years. However, she never felt completely fulfilled in this line of work and finally decided to follow her heart and become a winemaker.
Sue returned to school at UC Davis where she completed the Wine Certification program. After earning the certification, she moved to Walnut Grove, California and worked the 2002 harvest at a small winery where she made Chardonnay, Merlot, Cabernet and Zinfandel. All fruit for the Zinfandel came from the Lodi Region and Sue found herself enjoying this varietal/appellation combo quite a bit. "Zinfandel can be a bit fussy, "Sue says,"and its flavor profile differs from the 'standard' reds like Cabernet and Merlot. I really enjoy the challenge of making Zinfandel".
After two years in Walnut Grove, Sue joined the winemaking team at DFV Wines as an intern. Sue quickly climbed the ranks and in 2004 was promoted to Winemaker, focusing exclusively on red varietals. 2009 marks her seventh harvest with DFV Wines and red varietals, especially Zinfandel, are Sue's forte.
Ed Killian joined Chateau Souverain winery as associate winemaker in 1992 from Lambert Bridge Winery in Dry Creek Valley. In his role as associate winemaker, Ed Killian had a strong hand in every aspect of winemaking at Chateau Souverain Winery, and was named winemaker in 1996. With 20 years of experience in winemaking in Sonoma County, Ed Killian has developed a tremendous amount of experience with the vineyards that contribute grapes to Chateau Souverain's winemaking program.
Killian owns the philosphy that the most important part of winemaking is learning the characteristics and tendencies of the vineyards. Having worked with the same growing areas-and in some cases the same vineyards-prior to joining Chateau Souverain, from the beginning Killian was able to impart his winemaking skills and philosophy with his grape growers and staff.
"At Chateau Souverain", we have tremendous strides in wine quality, and I'm pleased this has been noticed by both the wine press and consumers. The keys have been the maturing of our northern Alexander Valley and home vineyards, locating the best sources for the grapes we don't grow ourselves, a major investment in state-of-the-art equipment and fine tuning our cellar techniques. Our mission now is to continue to make each wine even better than the last".
Scott Kozel, Winemaker, Director of Coastal Winemaking, E and J Gallo Winery . A native of Reno, Nevada, Scott spent his childhood weekends in the University of Nevada Medical School's microbiology lab with his father. As Director of Coastal Winemaking, Scott oversees the winemaking teams at Gall Family Vineyards Sonoma, Louis M. Martin Winery and William Hill Estate Winery. "My job is to connect with our winemakers with the best grape growers throughout the North Coast and give them tools to craft wines of extraordinary quality and value", says Scott.
Scott brings a wealth of diverse experience in both winemaking and mechanical engineering to his role. He earned his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University and worked as a mechanical engineer for nearly a decade before pursuing a master's degree in Enology from the University of California at Davis. Scott later melded his this personal passion for wine with his analytical abilities through a position at Joseph Phelps Vineyards. Scott joined Gallo Family Vineyards Sonoma in 2000 as a enologist. Scott's early days in the microbiology lab, coupled with his experience as a mechanical engineer, have served as a foundation for many innovations in the winery. At Gallo Family Vineyards Sonoma, Scott contributed to the design and construction of an enhanced red fermentation area and new red crush pits, and he has been instrumental in developing controls and conditioning techniques in the cellar.
Today, Scott balances the art and science of winemaking, tapping into the unique talents and diverse styles of his team. I tend to focus on the chemistry of winemaking, says Scott. "We're very lucky to have winemakers who intuitively understand the artistry of wine and others who have a strong grasp of the science. You can't have one without the other, so the two approaches really complement each other beautifully".
Roland Marandino, Wine Ambassador of Cecchi and Satori Wines. Roland is very passionate about his wines. His enthusiasm is contagious as he describes not only the wines he represents but the role they can play in our lives. One of his recurring themes is that, for Italians, wine is food and consequently their wines are made not for judges but for the dinner table. They are intended to compliment a menu not to dominate it. He began with a degree in Renaissance English literature. When he realized that a university career would not allow him to indulge some of his more worldly interest, wine, food, travel and opera, he left the university life for the business world. Hoping to demystify the world of wine, through clear and simple expression, he started Table Wine . and met the interest of the internet's young audience in affordable wines for everyday drinking. He always tries to find common ground with his audience and can talk as comfortably to the wine novice as he can to be oenophile and always with sincerity and contagious passion.
Philippe Marchal, Sommelier,Restaurant, Daniel
Born into a family of winemakers, from his earliest years Philippe Marchal knew he was destined to become a sommelier. He came to the United States to join DANIEL as a sommelier in December, 2001 and has been the restaurant's Chief Sommelier since January, 2005. As a Strasbourg native, Philippe admits to a penchant for Alsatian wines, particularly Rieslings, but is delighted that the guests he serves are adventurous when it comes to trying the wines from all over the world that DANIEL's list unique. "There had been wine makers in my family as far back as anyone can remember", explains Philippe, "they were still making Riesling and Gewurtztraminer in manual basket presses when I was a little boy". Philippe cherishes these memories along with the taste of the Mirabelle Eau de Vie his family made each summer with plums from their orchard. By the age of 10, Philippe himself was taking part in Alsatian grape harvests.
This young sommelier's career has been decidedly international, taking him from Alsace to the Cote d'Azur, the English countryside, New York City and even Japan, where he participated in a wine festival along side Serge Dubs, then Meilleur Sommelier du Monde. It all begain in 1989 with an apprenticeship to "Meilleur Jeune Sommelier de France", David Kaminsky. "By the time I met David, I knew I wanted to be a sommelier", says Philippe, "but he really set me on the right path and inspired me with his depth of knowledge, his desire to know everything".
Philippe's home town of Strasbourg is capital of Alsace region and an important culinary and wine making center. His first professional steps were taken there with a two-year apprenticeship at the two-star restaurant, Le Cerf, followed by three years at another famed local restaurant, Julien. His passion for film next led him to Cannes, sight of the renowned international film festival. It would be home for him for the next several years as he worked in the world class Hotel Martinez and its two star restaurant, La Palme d'Or, where he arrived in 1993 as commis and left in 2000 as assistant sommelier. Philippe's grandfather had always told him that the family would have at least one world traveler in each generation. Fulfilling this prophecy, Philippe's career took him to England. At Chef Michel Roux's acclaimed Waterside Inn at Bray, Philippe came in to contact with an ever more sophisticated clientele and an exquisite collection of rare Mission Haut Brion and Chateau d'Yquem.
With no family or friends in the United States, Philippe took a both leap, sending his resume to New York's DANIEL, where his professional pedigree and passion were all too apparent to Chef-Owner, Daniel Boulud. While the wine list Philippe nurtures at DANIEL may be primarily French, it also embraces selections from around the globe, including Philippe's new world favorites such as Australian Syrahs, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc and Oregon Pinot Noirs. He takes the list on journeys off the beaten path with unexpected selections such as Aloxe Corton, a white Burgundy made from Pinot Gris rather than the more characteristic chardonnay - or Albert Mann's "La Faille", an Alsatian Red made with Pinot Noir.
Returning for the fifth year in a row, the great
Peter Merriam, Owner/Winemaker from Merriam Vineyards . Peter has had many years of experience in the Wine industry. Peter along with his wife, Diana toured the Chateaus of France during their honeymoon in 1982 and they dreamed of having their own vineyard. In 1988, they purchased "Town Wine and Spirits" in Burlington, MA and operated it for 15 years while developing a wine label. In 2000, they bought Windacre, which was one of the first vineyards to be planted in Sonoma County in the 1890's by the Sadoni family.
2008 "Wine Buyer's Favorite Winery"
Rick Middleton Jr.,Proprietor for Clayhouse Wines. Rick's family has been closely involved with agriculturally related businesses for four generations and is based in Hoquiam, Washington state. In the 1990s the company began to grow table and wine grapes in California. This company is now one of the leading suppliers of table grapes in the United States. Naturally, the next step was to establish a wine brand. Since Rick is a passionate wine lover, he worked with Napa valley winemaker Tom Eddy, gaining hands on experience with small-lot, artisan-style winemaking.
Brenda Murphy, Co-Founder and President and Kristin Murphy, Vice-President of Business Units from Clos La Chance Winery .
Back again for the fourth year
Mark Neal, Owner, Winemaker for Neal Family Vineyards . Mark's fondest memories were as a boy working with his father, Jack, side-by-side in the vineyards. Through Jack's hardwork, he started his own vineyard management company in 1968. Mark has dedicated his life for caring for some of the most sought after vineyards and wine grapes in the country. In 2001, Mark accomplished his family dream of of building his own winery. The beauty and simplicity of the Napa Valley is exemplified by his winery and the richness and complexity of the valley's soil is evident in the wine that he produces.
Chris Noble, Partner and Chief Operating Officer, joined Castle Rock Winery in 2003 and brings with him a wealth of business experience from the retail and other industries. He is responsible for the financial aspects of the business and is also responsible for production, supplies, contracts and public affairs.
Carla Snow, MSW, Wine Educator for a A Grape Affair . Carla is New Hampshire's first female certified specialist of wine. Carla specializes in making the world of wine a less intimidating place. Carla lived in Australia to study at Le Cordon Bleu for a yar earning both culinary and sommelier certificates. She then moved to Bordeaux and then to Rhone to apprentice with the world's best wine makers. Upon her return to NH, she began working with a local wine importer and distributor sharing her skill and knowledge of wine.
Rob Stuart, Winemaker for R.Stuart and Company . After making wine for other people for more than twenty (20) years, Rob Stuart and his partners founded R. Stuart in 2002. With a degree in biochemistry from Rensselear Polytechnic Institute in New York. Rob started his winemaking journey in on the bottling line at Hans Kornell in Napa, California. From there he went on to work in the cellar at Valley View Vineyards and then to Stanton Hills in Yakima, Washington where he made wine for ten (10) years. In 1994, he returned to Oregon when he became winemaker for Erath Vineyards, his home away from home until he started his current adventure. Now he makes the wine he loves, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and sparkling wine.
Jen Wall, Winemaker for Barefoot Cellars . Jennifer is a native Californian and was born in Sacremento California. Jennnifer intended on Medical School after receiving a bachelor's degree in Biology from the University of California at Santa Cruz. Following her graduation in 1991, Jennifer moved to Sonoma County, where she acquired her first winery position at a custom wine processing facility called Vinwood Cellars-Gauer Estates. Jennifer started at the ground floor of the operation working in the lab and checking fermenting tanks daily, ensuring the juice was turning into wines as they should.
After spending one harvest working at the winery, medical school was a distant memory 14-16 hour shifts couldn't extinguish Jennifer's enthusiasm for her new found winemaking career. With the help of a mentor winemaker, Erin Green, now winemaker of Palhmeyer, Jennifer learned her winemaking skills 'on the job' while taking enology classes at night. Vinwood Cellars also offered Jennifer the ability to learn various winemaking methods since each winemaking client using the plant had a different techniques and winemaking styles.
Vinwood Cellars-Gauer Estates was eventually sold to Kendall Jackson. In 1993, the original principals of Vinwood Cellars-Gauer Estates created a new company and offered Jennifer a position as Lab Director and the opportunity to work first hand in the establishment of the lab and protocol for a new winery. In that position, Jennifer assisted and trained with Master Winemaker Kerry Damskey, who has been an accredited winemaker in Sonoma County since 1985, and is also the two time recipient of the Sonoma County Harvest Fair Sweepstakes award.
During the harvest of 1995, Jennifer started her career as the winemaker of Barefoot Cellars Winery. At that time, Barefoot Cellars was only producing 4 varietals: California Sauvignon Blanc, California Chardonnay, California Cabernet Sauvignon and California White Zinfandel. That year ended with Barefoot Cellars selling 140,000 cases. Jennifer continued as the sole Winemaker for 10 years until the brand was acquired by the Gallo Family in 2005; at which time the brand was selling over 600,000 cases annually to 48 states as well as 16 international destinations.
In 1996, as Barefoot Cellars became a national brand, Jennifer decided to 'extend the California range' by adding Barefoot California Zinfandel. The following year, in 1997, Jennifer released Barefoot California Merlot. Just prior to harvest 1998, Jennifer released a 1997 Barefoot Reserve Sonoma County Chardonnay. The Barefoot Reserve program was a new concept with a higher price point , more specific appellation, and the wines were crafted using specialized winemaking techniques. 1997 Barefoot Reserve Sonoma County Pinot Noir was the next release in the Barefoot Reserve Sonoma County range. Once it was clear that the brand could 'step up' to a higher price point, with quick and proven sell through, Jennifer started making plans to again expand the reserve program to include Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc. All of the Barefoot Reserve Sonoma County wines are hand picked, whole cluster pressed, and enjoy some time in French oak (excluding the Sauvignon Blanc which Jennifer prefers to be oak free).
In the summer of 1998, eighteen months prior to the millennium celebration, Jennifer released Barefoot Bubbly Extra Dry California Champagne. Barefoot Cellars sold 15,000 cases of Barefoot Bubbly California Champagne in 1999. Later, Jennifer released the Barefoot Bubbly 'Brut Cuvee' California Champagne, a drier style wine which was offered at the same affordable price point as the Extra Dry California Champagne.
Jennifer has received over 2500 medals for her wines. In 2002, she received the outstanding rating of Double Gold, Best of Class and 98 points at the California State Fair for her California Chardonnay and in 2004 she was awarded the Best of Show award at the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience for her Alexander Valley Merlot.
|URL: http://outlet/www/wineweekbios10.shtml Updated: 01/21/10 16:09:36|