Odds ‘N Ends

Maybe it's the shell shock from a generally positive week in the market or the fact that we've been busy working our way through a half-bottle sampler from Calera this week, but I figured it was a good time to provide some short updates on a number of subjects. And besides, after my wife's amazing post about Uccelliera and the naming of our son earlier this week, how can I even compete?

So, here we go:

As you probably saw in this post, we attended the Family Winemakers of California event in Del Mar a couple of weeks ago.  We were ungraciously denied entry to the "trade-only" portion of the show and had to instead elbow our way to the booze with the rest of the riff-raff.  Despite the indignity, we did find a couple of nice surprises, notably a mostaco called Frivolo from Vino Noceto.  It's only 7% alcohol and has great fruit and some slight bubbles.  I'm betting that this will be our preferred summer wine for 2009.  At only $15/bottle you can't beat it.  It was also a treat to be able to meet Gary Pisoni and Mary Elke, among others.

Speaking of Gary Pisoni, Jocelyn A was the first to correctly to identify one of our pinot heros.  At Jocelyn's request, we've sent off $250 to the Central Asia Institute, which promotes and supports education for girls in remote regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan.  Remember, the best way to win money for your favorite charity is to send in your Bruliam t-shirt pictures!!

If you are wondering, the guide we had in Italy who led us to Uccelliera is a man named Pino Teresi.  Pino's been running wine and food tours in Tuscany for many years and has actually developed quite a following.  Along with his wife and son, they now also own the Fattoria Borgonuovo - a small group of rental homes in Tuscany for visiting families.  I can't recommend him highly enough for area tours.  And, who knows?  Maybe he'll introduce you to a burgeoning winemaking star.

We recently received a second barrel sample of our 2008 Doctors Vineyard pinot from the Santa Lucia Highlands.  The strong fruit was still prevalent, but the mid-palate issue that we were concerned about in the first tasting (click here for a refresher) was absent.  Possibly a nuance of barrel samples?  We're not sure.  We'll be up in northern California in May or June to do more sampling and blending.

Speaking of wine tastings, a number of you have mentioned that you never saw the video of our second wine tasting - the one with the smoke taint.  Here's the link.

Finally, we'll be taking a little Spring Break of our own next week, so no new posts until April 6th.  That should give you all plenty of time to send in your new Bruliam t-shirt pictures!!


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