Happening in the Vineyards ...
Of Noodles and Netting
June's big project was getting the new bee netting on the vineyard. We way underestimated the amount of work involved in this project.
The cool attachment for putting the nets on came from Australia. We picked it up after it arrived and it looked like a piece of modern art. A couple of days of assembly and voila!
We had an incredible heat wave last week. It hit 112 for two days. The avocados in De Luz and San Diego county really suffered some losses. It's amazing the damage that an extra 10 degrees can do. Most of the vineyard only sustained 5 - 10% damage. The Syrah, however, looks like about 30 - 40%.
The Merlot, Pinot and Chardonnay are looking great, not much damage and now in veraison.
How to read a French wine label ...
Unlike wine labeling in the United States, labeling laws in France are incredibly strict. French wines are labeled by region not by grape variety. A Bordeaux, for example could be a Merlot, Cabernet, one of several other varieties or some combination. Unless you know the specific vineyard, you may not know exactly what you are drinking.
Using the picture below, here are some of the French label basics.
1 - Vintage, 2 - Producer, 3 - Appelation or sub-region, 4 - Region & style, 5 - Translates as "bottled at the estate", 6 - Alcohol content, 7 - Winery address, 8 - Volume. You will notice that while we know from the label that it is a Rose from the Rhone region, we don't really know what the grape variety is.
There are six major regions for French wine (and several lesser known regions). So, if you get a bottle of French wine you to understand the primary grapes grown in the region to get an idea of the wine.
Bordeaux is know for bold red blends, generally based on Cabernet and Merlot. The primary red grapes grown are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec & Carmenere. Generally you will find that Bordeaux wines are full bodied, dry and earthy.
This is the center of the world's sparkling wine production. The primary grapes are Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Munier. Champagne region is known for sparkling wines with high acidity. As you probably know you can't call your sparkling wine a Champagne unless it comes from the Champagne region.
Burgandy is equally famous for both red and white wines. The vineyards in Burgundy were sectioned off by monks hundreds of years ago, so it is a very intricate growing area. The primary grapes are Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Gamay. Burgundy wines are light bodied, dry reds and Chardonnays that can be crisp and steely or richly oaked.
Alsace has a long history of Germanic influence with the easiest labels to understand since they are mostly labeled by grape varietal. Love that German organization! The primary grapes are Riesling, Pnot Gris, Gerwurztraminer, Pinot Blanc and Muscat. Alsace is know for it's crisp, dry whites and a few delicious dessert wines.
The Rhone region is very diverse. It has searing hot areas in the south and frigid mountains in the north.. The primary grapes are Syrah, Grenache, Mouvedre and Viognier. The Rhone is known for is wild, gamey reds; rich aromatic whites; and bone-dry roses.
The Loire region follows the Loire river. Virtually every style of wine is made there. The primary grapes are Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin Blanc. The reds and the whites are general herbaceous and mineral-driven. There is also a lot of sparkling, sweet and rose wines made.
So, stop by your local wine store and try out your label reading skills.
Junk Food Pairings...
Summer is here and it's time for the beach, camping, BBQ's, porch sitting and trashy novel reading. A common theme to all these activities is junk food and adult beverages. My favorite adult beverage is wine, so naturally I want to make sure that my cheese doodles are paired with the right wine.
About 6 years ago Patrick Bartlett (my favorite chef) and I got together and worked out some junk food pairings. We've updated the pairings for our current wines and obviously evolving tastes. Here are the recommendations. Bon Appetit!
Cheddar Chex Mix, Terra Chips, green apple jelly beans, mac & cheese, spinach/artichoke dip, quacamole & chips
Kettle corn, almond cookies, hot wings, smoked almonds, pretzels
Green apple jelly beans, white cheddar popcorn, pizza (especially with tomato and olives), potato chips
Beef jerky, kettle corn, almond cookies, mac & cheese
Terra chips, beef jerky, Jolly Rancher Cherry candy, smoked almonds, white cheddar popcorn
Cheddar Chex Mix, cheese puffs, beef jerky, coffee jelly beans, cocktail franks with BBQ sauce
Sparkling Wine (Champagne)
Potato chips, potato chips & potato chips
July Pick Up Party ...
Have you heard about 'Slow Food'? Well, July is 'Slow Pickup'. Our July Pickup party will start on Friday, July 8 and end on Sunday, July 17.
Come in to Crush & Brew any time during those dates and pick up your wine. Have a complimentary cheese plate & wine before you pick up your shipment. Just tell them you are a Woodworth Wine Club member and they will take care of you. While you are there, stay for lunch or dinner. The menu is great!
If you can't make it anytime between July 8 - 17, it's ok. You can pick up your wine after the 17th, there just won't be a great cheese plate waiting for you.'
Read all about it ...
Here are some interesting recent articles about the California wine country. Thought you might enjoy checking them out.
In Contra Costa County, a vineyard that defies all odds
Forty five miles east of San Francisco sits Frank Evangelho's vineyard. It's a sandy beach of a vineyard. Its 130 year old, head trained grapevines might look like coastal dune grass to the casual glance. PG&E owns the property. Transmission towers crown it, electrical lines canopy it, railroad tracks form its northern border. It faces a motel with rooms for rent by the hour. Yet Evangelho Vineyard is one of California's most precious viticultural treasures.
Justin Vineyards bulldozes forest of old oaks, sparking uproar ...
The Wonderful Company, the corporate arm of Beverly Hills billionaires Stewart and Lynda Resnick, promotes itself incessantly as an exemplar of social responsibility and a guardian of sustainable agriculture. Don't tell that to the company's neighbors in Paso Robles, the heart of California's Central Coast wine country.
Lodi outlook bright, but rising costs an issue...
The Lodi area grape and wine industry is coming up roses, or perhaps that should be Rose. Lodi has come out on the right side on a yawning divide in the wine industry - lower riced wines, those generally less than $8 a bottle are falling in volume and dollar sales while higher priced premium wines are rapidly growing.
Woof Notes ...
We hope you enjoyed this month's Newsletter. If so, please forward to a friend. You can read more about Woodworth and check out our wines at www.WoodworthWine.com. Also join us on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/woodworthvineyards
Gary & Marlene Woodworth
In the vineyards and groves ...
Spring is definitely here. We have fog in the morning and blue skies in the afternoon. No (or not much) rain. It looks like El Nino was a bust for Southern California.
While we haven't had much rain, the rain we did have came with winds, so we had about 25 or 30 trees blow over. We decided to take the downed trees out and replace them.
We've done one pick of Avocados so far, getting the largest ones off the trees. We will pick again in another month when the smaller fruit sizes up. We had a good crop this year, probably around 120k lbs. Unfortunately, however, the prices aren't great because of a huge amount of Mexican fruit in the market now. We're hoping it will be better in a month.
We also picked the last of the Leucadendron this month. Glad that's over, cutting flowers is hard work.
The vines are growing really fast. We had bud break at the end of February and now the shoots are 2+ feet tall. Gary and Isaura have been shoot thinning and putting up the wires up for the last several weeks. It's a lot of work, but they finished it off this morning, and the vineyard is looking good.
Blessing of the Vines ...
It's time for the annual Blessing of the Vines. Join us on May 22nd.
We book up every year, so make your reservation soon using this link:
Pairing wine with spring vegetables...
The grocery stores and farmers markets are full of great spring vegetables. My garden, of course, has nothing planted yet, so I'm going to have to concentrate on summer veggies. Anyway, it's sometimes a challenge to come up the right wine when building a meal or appetizers around vegetables. Here's a handy chart for you to use.
A great new recipe for Wild Bandit ...
Our favorite chef, Patrick Bartlett has come up with a great recipe for our award-winning Wild Bandit. This interesting wine has won a Double Gold/Best of Class at the Women's International Competition and Silver Medals at the LA International, the Grand Harvest and from the Inland Empire Magazine.
The Mushroom Leek Tart is a wonderful combination of wild mushrooms, leeks & shallots, sour cream and Gruyere cheese in a puff pastry. Sounds pretty good, doesn't it?
Wild Bandit is a delicious blend of 65% Syrah and 35% Pinot Noir. The big, fruit, licorice and tobacco notes harmonize with the rich earthiness of the mushrooms and leeks. The butteriness of the tart shell, along with the cream and cheese, tames the wine's firm tannins and allows the layered notes of blackberries and black cherries to rise up and bloom.
To see and print the recipe, with step by step instructions, use this link:
There's an app for that ...
Here are a couple of new apps that you might enjoy. If you have a large wine cellar, or have been studying wine for years, these may be a little basic for you. If you are looking for a way to learn more, or find the right wine for what you are cooking while you are standing in the wine store, these might be for you. They are free, so no risk.
Demystify wines and grape varietals with Plonk (Android, iOS), a quick and elegantly designed guide that allows users to quickly learn about grape varieties and wines. Simple, color-coded tiles allow you to explore grape and wine varieties, reading up on their various traits, preferred food pairings, as well as recommendations of similar wine varieties. Users can rate and star particular wines and grape varietals, as well as mark particular favorites for easy reference down the line.
Hello Vino (Android, iOS) is designed to be your personal wine assistant. Rather than aim for the gung-ho wine enthusiast, Hello Vino is designed to assist the everyday wine buyer, suggesting the best wines for your food. Users can snap pictures of their purchases and add notes to their favorites. The app's extensive wine guide allows users to read up on wine and grape varieties as well. As a premium feature, users can scan wine labels to bring up tasting notes, ratings and recommended food pairings. Users can even call a California-based wine concierge for advice in choosing just the right wine for an occasion.
Woof Notes ...
We hope you enjoyed this month's Newsletter. If so, please forward to a friend. You can read more about Woodworth, buy wine and sign up for the Newsletter at www.WoodworthWine.com
Please join us at www.Facebook.com/woodworthvineyards
Join us for the Blessing of the vines
Published: Monday, March 28, 2016
Blessing of the Vines...
We're sorry, but this year's Blessing of the Vines is
Please keep us in mind for next year.
Join us for the annual Blessing of the Vines celebrating the new 2016 vintage.
Enjoy an afternoon of wine, food, music and friends.
Date: Sunday, May 22nd
Time: 2 - 5pm
Location: Woodworth Vineyards, De Luz
Cost: $25 for Members, $35 for Non-Members
March 2016 Pick Up Party ...
I'm sorry but we have a full house for our March Pickup Party at Hotel Temecula, so we can't take any more reservations.
There is limited space at the site and the response has been fast and overwhelming. You will be able to pick up your March shipment at Crush & Brew beginning on March 11.
It's time for our March Pick Up Party.
Join us for a fun evening at a very cool venue.
Richard Beck and Chris Greer (Wine Club Members of course) purchased and lovingly restored The Hotel Temecula, using much of the original furnishings and fixtures. Built in the 1880s,The Hotel Temecula has a rich and interesting history. Learn about this great Old Town landmark and tour the grounds and rooms while enjoying Woodworth wine and some appetizers.
You will also be able to pick up your March shipment, and you are welcome to bring guests.
Date: Saturday, March 12
Time: 5 - 7 pm
Location: The Hotel Temecula, 42100 Main Street, Old Town Temecula
You can check out The Hotel Temecula and see some pictures and a great video at www.facebook.com/thehoteltemecula
Please RSVP below
Happening in January @ Woodworth
Published: Friday, January 08, 2016
Welcome to 2016 ...
It's January in the vineyards and for the first time in a few years, it really feels like winter. The temperatures have been in the 50's and 60's, we've had wind, rain and overcast skies. I'd almost forgotten what winter was like in SoCal.
The vines have been pruned and with the colder weather, we're hoping for a nice long rest.
Did I mention the winds? Well, we definately had some and collected about 4 tons of avocados that were blown off the trees.
Get a bottle of wine for Christmas?
I, of course, think wine is a great gift. I like giving it and getting it. However, occasionally you get a bottle that's just not good. You don't need to toss it. That bottle can still help create a great meal or drink. Here are some ideas from Epicurious.
OVERLY SWEET RIESLING
Rieslings can be honey sweet or bone dry. Bad Rieslings, however, nail you with one flavor: sugar. They're way too sweet for the dinner table but don't make the cut for dessert, either. Luckily, with a little added sharpness from mustard, you can use Riesling to braise a chicken. After browning and removing chicken, add the wine for reducing and scraping up the brown bits. In the pan, add a high-quality Dijon mustard, shallots, garlic, and, of you've got it, dried porcini powder, which gives the braise a deeper flavor. Use this link for the recipe: Chicken in Riesling
Chardonnay can pick up lovely buttery, vanilla notes when it ages in an oak barrel. But holding the wine too long in oak can cause a sawdust flavor. If you can't drink that chardonnay try making a white Sangria. There are lots of Sangria recipes, but this one looks great. White Sangria
Big zinfandels can be fruit bombs, You have two glasses and you're done for, and then all you taste for the next two days are those two glasses of wine you had. If you can't drink it, cook it-that is, cook down the red wine in a short rib braise or even for a dessert course (think poached pears). Short Ribs
TANNIC CABERNET SAUVIGNON
Know that pucker feeling you get when you drink red wine? Those are the tannins, which help give wine structure and the ability to age. When a wine is too tannic, it can taste like a mouthful of cotton balls. If you don't want to use the wine in a braise like you would with a zinfandel, you can transform a cabernet sauvignon into a vermouth by infusing it with some seasonal spices. Simmer the wine with fall spices like cloves and cinnamon, then add a neutral grain spirit like Everclear. Strain, transfer to a bottle and keep refrigerated. Negroni
In the news...
Pierce's Disease hitting Napa/Sonoma
Pierce's Disease is a deadly disease of grapevines. It is caused by a bacteria, which is spread by xylem feeding leafhoppers known as sharpshooters (Blue/Green or Glassy Winged). Symptoms include scorching of leaves, and entire vines will die after 1-5 years. Pierce's Disease has been around for 100 years or more, but hit California in a big way through infected nursery stock in the 1980s.
In the 1990's Pierce's Disease hit the Temecula Valley Wine Country hard, spread by the Glassy Winged Sharpshooter. The Wine Institute estimates that about 25% - 40% of the vines were either killed off or were destroyed during that time frame. Many winery owners weren't sure if the Temecula Wine Country would survive. However, aggressive containment measures resulting from $millions in research by universities, USDA, etc., as well as a rethinking of some farming practices, have allowed Temecula Wine Country to contain the threat.
Wine & Vines Magazine is now reporting that there is a 'huge' outbreak of Pierce's Disease in Napa, Sonoma and the Russian River grape growing regions. While Pierce's is always around, it appears that the number of cases reported really exploded in 2015. It appears to be especially devastating to Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
One theory is that this outbreak is being spread by the native Blue/Green Sharpshooter which has not been included in the rigid quarantines of the Glassy Winged Sharpshooter, which was responsible for the Temecula outbreak. Other researchers believe that the major cause is the mild weather of 2015.
A lot of research money is going into combating this disease and there are some promising results. We'll have to keep watching.
After Christmas White Sale ...
Buy 4 bottles (any combinations) of our 2013 Chardonnay, 2013 Sweet Sophie, 2013 Golden Maggie and 2013 Herc's Field Blend and get 25% off.
It's like getting a bottle Free!
Go to White Sale
Save These Dates ...
Taste of De Luz
Join Cheri Dixon (Dixon Estate Olive Oil) and meI at Temecula Valley Cheese for cooking demonstration with Olive Oil (and wine of course). Just $15. Thursday, February 4 at 6pm. Buy your tickets at Temecula Valley Cheese Co in Old Town Temecula.
March Pick Up Party
Club Members, join us for a special pick up party on Saturday, March 12, 5-7pm. Wine Club Members Richard Beck & Chris Greer recently purchased and restored the historic Hotel Temecula in Old Town. Tour this remarkably restored building and learn its history while enjoying wine an appetizers. Save this date, RSVP info will follow shortly.
2015 in Review ...
Winter: We had a freak snow storm in De Luz on New Year's Day but that cleared up and made way for a very warm January and February. So much so that we had shoots spouting up by the end of February.
Spring: Gary finished his barrel table project (yea!). The grapes were looking great, and we had a fun time at the Blessing of the Vines with almost 100 people.
Summer: Powdery Mildew and the Bees hit us hard. In 2016 we will be netting for Bees. We had a good time at the July Pick Up Party at Temecula Valley Cheese Co. Sadly, we lost our little buddy Hercules.
We hope you enjoyed this month's Newsletter. If you did, please forward to a friend. You can read more about Woodworth at www.WoodworthWine.com or check us out on Facebook at www.facebook.com/woodworthvineyards
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