a food/wine/marketing blog that is funny by accident, sarcastic on purpose.

Posts tagged “"Truett Hurst"

barrel tasting day two: wine-napped & twitterpated.

Barrel Tasting this past Sunday was supposed to be day # 2 of new adventures and discoveries…  Basically, an extension of the agenda from Saturday.

It started off normal enough.  I met up with Thea at a new winery in the Russian River Valley called Copain Wines (aka @Copain).


The Copain tasting room is located on top of a hill on Eastside Road, directly across from the recreation park.  It is the only winery that I know of that is on that stretch of the road, so people will most likely only visit through word of mouth or because they were simply driving past it.  I only heard about it because they recently joined Twitter.

This posting is my attempt to start the word of mouth on this place (actually I mean continue the WOM) and let people know that if they want to taste some great Anderson Valley pinots, a Russian River GSM blend and a place to have a picnic and enjoy THE BEST VIEW from a winery   –   Then they should make sure to stop on by the Copain tasting room.

When Thea finally got bored with me taking pictures of the view, we headed over to Mill Creek Winery.  I am not going to waste my time to write much about this place because it was neither good nor bad.  It was  nothing worth going back for IMO.

The next stop: Michel-Schlumberger (aka @M_Schlumberger) to visit Judd Wallenbrock, the President, General Manager and head blogger at their award winning blog – The Benchland Blog Judd and crew have seemed to perfect the art of barrel tasting weekend. Visitors are instantly greeted by Judd and given an explanation of where you should go and a brief history of the winery.  Then guests travel through the cellar to taste out of the barrels, then into the next room to try already bottled wines, then lastly into their main tasting room.  This is where my friend Joe(y) poured us some wines that go back to 1989.  Of course Thea and I had to purchase the last case of 2001 Dry Creek Valley Pinot Noir (yes, I said it… There is one winery that does make Dry Creek Pinot).  After trying some aged Pinots and Cabs, we made out way into the wine club members tasting room and ended up drinking more Pinot on a picnic bench while discussing wine, social media and Judd’s new discovery of TwitPic.


Then we were onto Mounts Family Winery (aka @MountsFamWinery).  It is off the same beaten road as Michel-Schlumberger, in the middle of a vineyard.  Blink on West Dry Creek road and you will miss it.  But this is a small family winery that you shouldn’t miss out on.  Lana greets her visitors with a smile that let’s you know she is committed to customer service. Their Malbec out of the barrel was very tasty as well.

Around 4:30, a half hour after the official ending time of the event, Thea and I decided that we were most certainly not done yet.  If you know anything about Thea and me, you know that to be the truth.  We headed over to harass Jim at Truett Hurst once again.   Here we tried some Petit Verdot and talked Jim’s ear off for an hour or so.

All together a perfect day, regardless of the fact that we were wine-napped by Judd and strayed WAY off our agenda….  Oh, wait… There is always next weekend.


zinful zap events: the grand tasting.

Saturday was the big ZAP event – The Grand Zinfandel Tasting!  According to my favorite wine geek and partner in wine glass breaking, Ward of WineLog Blog aka DrXeno:

“Over 275 wineries, 400 wines, countless other food and wine specialists and 10,000 attendees will be participating”

Judging from what I saw from my bird’s eye view of only one half of the event, I believe it.  As I was taking my pictures one person noted that this year is one of the ZAP event’s slower years.


No matter the amount of people, I know I was extremely thankful to be there.  Being a Sonoma County girl, I know the power that the Zin (especially Dry Creek Valley) has on people.  Even though it is still my second favorite varietal, it is still a great wine to drink on it’s own or paired with great hearty food — Great for the Winter time.

The reason I was able to enjoy this grand tasting was because of Lisa of Hahn Wine Estates aka WineDiverGirl who introduced me to the “Bloggers Lounge” organizer, Wine 2.0.  An online company and social network dedicated to social media and events in the wine world.  Wine 2.0 allowed us bloggers to come to the Grand Tasting and enjoy the free wifi, networking opportunities and to have a place to sit back and gather our thoughts of the event.

The wineries were split up into two different rooms based in alphabetical order.   I stayed in the I though Z room for the most part, highly concentrated on the T section.

The reason: Truett Hurst Winery, their three zinfandel’s, one pinot noir, one petite sirah, owner Phil Hurst and General Manager Jim Morris.  The Zins were a perfect balance of being bold without over powering the taste buds and the company was one of the most welcoming, friendly and humorous out of all wineries there.  It doesn’t hurt that they happened to be the only winery there that was on Twitter (please comment if I am wrong) – and we (Ashley, Ward and I) are all Twitter obsessed.


I sent this image to Twitter of us three with Jim.


An image I sent to Twitter saying that Truett Hurst “gets” Social Media: Truett Hurst is Everywhere.

Without naming names, I will say that some of the wineries that were there were semi to extremely close minded to the thought of social media.  Visiting as many wineries as I could, I talked to many of them about what they were doing online to promote their brand.  Most of the response to my question was “What is Twitter?” or “I do not know how to start” or “No, we don’t believe in that.”  Needless to say, I took all their business cards and have sent an email letting them know I would love to speak to them more about the power of social media for brands.

I tweeted my frustration while at the event and my favorite response was from Penelope Gadd-Coster, owner and winemaker of Coral Mustang Winery.

“Most wineries don’t even blog, let alone do any social networking”

It reminds me of a past wine client and their CEO who thought that the internet was not where their customers where… This was a year ago…. So much has changed, yet so much remains the same.

I am just thankful to be in the presence of innovators such as the folks at Wine 2.0, fellow wine bloggers who I now call my friends and wineries such as Truett Hurst.

wine tasting as just one of the guys.

Recently I spent a day wine tasting throughout Dry Creek Valley.  True, I do this all the time, so it is not blog worthy. The difference is that this time I went with my two roommates and a friend of theirs from Chicago (for this blog post I shall call him Ed, because I like that name, and because it is his actual name).

Did I mention that all three of my wine tasting buddies are of the male species? Yes, a day of wine tasting with three guys.  Oh, and Ed doesn’t even like wine.

Our first stop was Turett Hurst Winery to visit Bob* in the tasting room and to check out the salmon in the creek (at Jim’s suggestion).

“Truett-Hurst Winery is Dry Creek Valley’s newest Biodynamic winery. Our commitment to earth-friendly stewardship is paramount and echoes throughout everything we do, from the scenic stretch of bucolic Dry Creek on which we reside, through the vineyards and tasting room.”

They just opened up a few months back and they are completely remodeling the place to be a sustainable farm slash awesome place to drink some wine and listen to music. I look forward to seeing the barn open up, bringing my niece and nephew to visit the sheep and have a few picnic’s on their lawn next summer.

*Bob was a gracious host. We drank great pinots and zins while Bob and the guys talked about music. It was definitely a great first experience into the wine realm for Ed. He even bought the 2006 Red Rooster Zinfandel.

dan (pic of one of my roommates)

Next we went to visit Ross at Bella Winery. Two years living in Healdsburg and I have yet to visit this beautiful venue.  It is probably because I tend to get stuck drinking wine with Amy at PappaPertrio Perry.


The entire wine cave at Bella was still decked out with Christmas trees that brought an instant smile to my face. The smell was exactly what I think of when I think of Christmas, and the great part was that it was combined with the smell of the oak wine barrels.

Here we tried 3 different zins and a syrah that I even liked. We attempted to show Ed the proper wine glass etiquette by explaining that the correct way to hold a wine glass is by the stem which does not interfere with the temperature of the wine.  It was amusing to see such a big guy attempt to hold the glass by the stem, it just looked so unnatural for him.  I left with a bottle of the 2005 Bella Vineyard Zinfandel.


During my brief period working at the lovely Kokomo Winery (yes, another one of our stops) Becky and I would be on the lookout for a group of guys wine tasting together. It was a rare occurrence for a group only consisting of guys to go out and taste wine together.  When it happened, we loved it though.  They definitely got a good amount of attention from us.

Though, since my adventure some of my questions that are been running through my head are:

  • Is a group of guys wine tasting not “macho” enough?
  • Are they like Ed holding the glass by the stem – Unnatural?

Is it just me that thinks this?