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Thursday, October 30, 2014
October 30, 2014 | 10:53 AM

Turrentine Brokerage is holding its annual Crop Contest.

Enter here and make your best prediction of total tonnage (in listed varieties). According to Turrentine, "Winners will be awarded a plaque, international acclaim and a bottle of sparkling wine."

All entries must be in by December 5th to be eligible.

October 30, 2014 | 7:48 AM

“Late canopy management does not have nearly the benefit for pyrazine control as does earlier management.”
-Mark Greenspan

From the article “What’s New from the 2014 ASEV National Conference,” page 42 in the October 2014 issue of WBM. Click here to subscribe to WBM.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014
October 29, 2014 | 1:33 PM

Wine Institute's International Department has confirmed the date and venue of its annual California Wine Export Program seminar which will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015 at the former Copia facility in Napa. It has also announced the schedule for its 2015 California Wine Fair tour across Canada. Registration and wine consolidation information will be released by late October/early November. Dates for the consumer and trade events are as follows:

Quebec City, Quebec: April 7

Montreal, Quebec: April 8

Ottawa, Ontario: April 10

Toronto, Ontario" April 13

Halifax, Nova Scotia: April 15

Edmonton, Alberta: April 22

Calgary, Alberta: April 24

Vancouver, B.C.: April 27

Winery participants must be members of the Wine Institute California Wine Export Program.

For program membership information, contact

October 29, 2014 | 6:46 AM

“The goal of winemaking is to produce a wine that is at least as good as the grapes from which it was made.”
-Curtis Phillips

From the article “Managing Large Fermentations,” page 32 in the October 2014 issue of WBM. Click here to subscribe to WBM.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014
October 28, 2014 | 2:23 PM

Nominations are officially open for the 2015 Oregon Wine A-List Awards. Formerly known as the Superior Cellar Awards, the rebranded Oregon Wine A-List Awards program honors restaurants and restaurant professionals that demonstrate outstanding commitment to advocating and celebrating the quality and diversity of the wines of Oregon. Anyone can nominate a restaurant or a restaurant wine professional as a candidate for an Oregon Wine A-List Award by visiting and completing an online nomination form by November 30, 2014.

Find more details and the full press release here.

October 28, 2014 | 7:42 AM

“There will always be a demand for top winemakers and consultants, but there’s still more talent than opportunity in general on the production side, and I don’t see that changing any time soon.”
-Tom Hill, Hill & Associate

From the article “2014 Salary Survey Report,” page 58 in the October 2014 issue of WBM. Click here to subscribe to WBM.

Monday, October 27, 2014
October 27, 2014 | 11:44 AM released a report detailing wine job posting trends as of September 2014. As the wine industry’s leading online job site, has a unique vantage point over industry trends. The index indicates that job postings increased 15 percent from September 2013. The index is up 16 percent so far this year.

The September increase in job postings was driven by hospitality and winemaking jobs. The hospitality index increased 73 percent from its level in September 2013, and is up 24 percent for the year.

The winemaking job index rose 30 percent from its level in September 2013, and is up 25 percent year-to-date.

The sales and marketing index decreased 31 percent from its level in September 2013, and is down 9 percent year-to-date.


October 27, 2014 | 8:38 AM

“We’re thinking 100 years out, not just the next 10 or 20 years, and when you do that it makes it a lot easier to invest in new equipment and vineyards, because we’re doing it for the future.”
-Randy Lange

From the article “LangeTwins Family Winery and Vineyards, New Bottling Line Installation at LangeTwins Winery,” page 20 in the October 2014 issue of WBM. Click here to subscribe to WBM.

Friday, October 24, 2014
October 24, 2014 | 7:05 AM

Have you checked out the October 2014 issue of Wine Business Monthly?

Inside October 2014 you will find:

  • 2014 Salary Survey
  • Managing Large Fermentations
  • Checklist: Is Your Winery Properly Insured?
  • Vineyard Management Tips from ASEV 2014

Check out the Month in Reivew from the October issue below by editor Cyril Penn:

Stirred, Not Shaken

Many of us who live in or near Napa Valley felt a strong jolt in the middle of the night a couple weeks ago (at press time). It was frightening at my house. As our place in Carneros rocked back and forth, flashes of green lightning were visible from the upstairs bedroom. Half asleep, I assumed the lighting was from electrical transformers exploding or was even the result of some sort of terrorist attack. It turns out others saw the “earthquake lights,” too. They weren’t from transformers. Earthquake lights are a little-understood phenomena that researchers now attribute to disruptions of the Earth’s magnetic field due to tectonic stress.

We soon learned there’d been a 6.0 magnitude quake, the most severe in California for 25 years. There had been dozens of injuries, a couple of them critical, but thankfully no fatalities, though many structures in downtown Napa would soon be declared uninhabitable.

Most of us experienced little damage beyond objects falling from shelves. Wine Business Monthly’s office was a bit shaken up, but no significant damage occurred. Others weren’t as lucky, including many winemakers. Barrels of wine toppled from racks, huge storage tanks sprung unstoppable leaks and priceless library wines shattered, among other things. In a couple of instances, groundwater even shifted.

People are resilient and stepped up to help. Growers and their crews continued transporting grapes that had been scheduled for delivery before the quake. Neighbors lent one another equipment and support. Winemakers came together to recover wine from toppled barrels, bringing anything that could be used to hold wine, using forklifts, and even cranes, to lift the displaced barrels. The Napa Valley Vintners Association established a $10 million disaster relief fund to support local families and businesses while others made additional contributions.

It’s a moving target, but as this issue of the WBM goes off to print, the current estimate is that more than 120 wineries were affected with damage—ranging from loss of inventory to damage to equipment—reaching more than $52 million. For some, particularly smaller wineries, this has big financial ramifications. Wine isn’t just bottled poetry. Barrels of wine are inventory used for paying bills and earthquake insurance is prohibitively costly.

Clearly, things could have been way worse. It is unimaginable what could have happened if the earthquake had occurred during business hours. Coming as it did in the middle of the night, winemakers were at home when the barrels went flying. Most had just started harvesting grapes. Barrels and tanks in many instances had been emptied for bottling and to clear the way for harvest. Case goods, shrink wrapped and attached to palates, for the most part were unscathed.

“Shaken, not stirred” is a catchphrase from Ian Fleming’s fictional British Secret Service agent James Bond, a reference to how he wanted his martini prepared. It’s a phrase writers have been using in describing the Napa wine industry following the quake. That’s fine, though I’d say most wineries in Napa were stirred, not shaken.
– Cyril Penn, Editor

NOTE: Speaking of the Napa earthquake, look out for an article in the December issue of WBM on how wineries can prepare for earthquakes.

Click here to read the digital edition of October. Click here to subscribe.


Thursday, October 23, 2014
October 23, 2014 | 4:40 PM

The fourth annual Garagiste Festival is taking place in Paso Robles from November 6 to the 9. The event will gather 75 of these wineries and feature more than 200 wines, over 20 varietals, Seminars and Parties. Wine Business Monthly published an article on the Garagistes movement back in July, detailing the movement and the annual event:

Though the term is French—like so many used in winemaking—the "garagiste" movement has found a ready home in California. Many wineries truly start in garages, but wherever their home, the term has been adopted by many small, innovative winemakers who don’t follow convention.

The term "garagiste" actually originated in Bordeaux and was first derisively applied to winemakers who weren’t making wine the traditional way in chateaux.

Reportedly, “legitimate” vintners highlighted the movement when they warned wine critic Robert Parker not to taste garagiste wines, a sure way to interest a curious reporter. Needless to say, he loved some, which were made in more of a California style with riper fruit and greater extraction than traditional Bordeaux wines.

Of course, many small wineries here in America have always made wine their own way, some ironically in a more “European” style, but the movement started receiving greater attention with the founding of the Garagiste Wine Festival in 2011 by Stewart McLennan and Douglas Minnick, who both made wine in their garages themselves—but not commercially.

Since then, their festivals—first Paso Robles in San Luis Obispo County, then Solvang in Santa Barbara County—have drawn hordes of wine lovers looking for an alternative to predictable, mass-produced wines. 

Read the full article in the July 2014 issue of WBM here.
To learn more about the annual event,
click here.

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