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  • Neil & Sue Shay

Groundhog Day 2022

Neil often mentions that February is one of his favorite months of the year… Not necessarily because the weather is so great, but because the days finally start to become noticeably longer. It’s the time for the vineyard to get pruned, along with all the fruit trees on the property. But already, the first week of February, we’re seeing the days getting noticeably longer, even if just a bit, but also now we’re seeing daytime temperatures approaching the mid-50’s, the first of temperatures like these since the end of the fall. So good news on that front!

All the white wines from the 2021 harvest, the Chardonnay, Pinot gris, and Viognier, as well as the Rosé have been cold stabilized. This is the process of exposing these wines to low temperatures for several days, to force excess tartaric acid in the wine to crystalize and precipitate out of the wine. This ensures that the same thing, the crystallization and precipitation won’t happen when you put a bottle of these wines in a cold refrigerator to chill before serving. A white wine not cold stabilized is liable to produce a precipitate that resembles more the white flakes of a snow globe, and not a desirable, clear, chilled summer white or rosé. The Viognier, by the way, is going to be blended with Chardonnay, to make ‘Duology’, our white wine blend last released in 2019.

Otherwise, out in the vineyard, as expected, we’re in the process of completing the pruning work that needs to be finished before bud break, which usually happens in April. We posted in our last blog post, and showed in our ‘Year in Review’ pictorial, images of our tasting room, which has been remodeled and redecorated to provide about a dozen indoor seats, and another dozen seats in the covered and weather-protected entry area just outside the tasting room. Along with that, we’ve now got three propane fire pits, to allow for seating up on the porch and in front of the tasting room, so you can come out an enjoy wines in front of the warmth of one of these outdoor fireplaces. We’re generally open now through April, on Saturday and Sunday afternoons – so check the weather, and make plans to come out and enjoy some good wine and conversation!

In other news, we heard back from several wine events: the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, McMinnville Wine Classic, and Wine Enthusiast Magazine. For these three judging's, we sent in our 2019 Pinot noirs (The ‘Flagship’ and three reserve PN’s), the 2020 Chardonnay, and the 2019 Reserve Chardonnay. Not every wine was judged at each venue, due to submission limitations. Anyway, here’s the report:

2022 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition

Gold Medal: 2019 South Block Reserve Pinot Noir

Silver Medal: 2019 Reserve Chardonnay; 2019 Flagship PN; 2019 Mom’s Reserve PN, Zenith Vineyard Reserve PN

2022 Wine Enthusiast Magazine

92 Points: 2019 Zenith Vineyard Reserve Pinot Noir

91 Points: 2019 Flagship Pinot Noir; 2019 South Block Reserve Pinot Noir;

89 Points: 2019 Mom’s Reserve Pinot Noir

2022 SIP McMinnville Wine Competition

Double Gold Medal: 2019 South Block Reserve Pinot Noir

Gold Medal: Zenith Vineyard Reserve Pinot Noir

Silver Medal: 2019 Reserve Chardonnay; 2020 Chardonnay

Celebrating these awards, we’ve decided to offer a February promotion on our remaining 2018 Pinot noirs. These four pinots (Flagship, Mom’s, South Block, and Zenith) all were highly rated and received numerous medals and high scores (e.g. WE Magazine rated them 92-94 points!). We’re going to offer this special promotion as a ‘stock up your collection’, with the opportunity to piggyback your wine club discount onto the promotional discount.

This is an opportunity to bring home these wines for discounts approaching ‘industry discount’ or wholesale pricing levels!

Here’s the specifics:

All Current Release 2018 Pinot Noirs on Sale as Follows:

Buy 6 bottles: Get 10% off + Wine Club Discount of 10-15-20%

Buy 12 bottles: Get 15% off + Wine Club Discount of 10-15-20%

Buy 24+ bottles: Get 20% off + Wine Club Discount of 10-15-20%