WALLA WALLA, Wash. – L’Ecole N° 41, one of Walla Walla’s early founding family wineries, has announced their plan to open a new Woodinville Location in Wine Walk Row at MainStreet Property Group’s ‘The Schoolhouse District.’
Nearly forty years after their founding, the new location will be the winery’s first Western Washington location. The design of the new space will take inspiration from L’Ecole’s Historic Frenchtown Schoolhouse tasting room located in the Walla Walla Valley. Closer to the vital Puget Sound market, it will afford the winery the opportunity to welcome visitors to gather and enjoy their many internationally recognized bottlings, including winery-exclusive releases.
“We’ve long-considered expanding our flagship Walla Walla Valley location into the Seattle area, and particularly the Woodinville area. The new Schoolhouse District incorporates modern architecture built around a renovated historic schoolhouse building – soon to be occupied by a second location of Walla Walla Steak Co. The whole prospect felt serendipitous,” said Marty Clubb, L’Ecole’s Owner & Managing Winemaker. “We are looking forward to providing a L’Ecole experience in a totally new space, yet with a familiar feel. To design the space, we are working with Boxwood Architects and my daughter, Rebecca Clubb-Olson, as our design consultant.” He continued, “with the quality team behind The Schoolhouse District, including Angela Oliveri of First Western Properties, MainStreet Property Group, and R|Miller construction – we are confident that we will deliver on the promise of a truly unique visitor experience.”
Anticipated to open in June 2022, L’Ecole will kick off its opening with a month of new vintage releases and select library offerings pulled from their Schoolhouse cellar in the Walla Walla Valley. L’Ecole’s Vins de L’Ecole Wine Club members will also be invited to join a special grand opening event. Details may be found on L’Ecole’s website.
Housed in the historic Frenchtown schoolhouse depicted on its label, L’Ecole has earned international acclaim for producing expressive, distinctive wines that reflect the unmistakable typicity of Washington State and the unique terroir of their Walla Walla Valley vineyards. L’Ecole N° 41 has been recognized as Winery of the Year by Wine and Spirits Magazine 15 times.
A visit to Paso Robles is never complete for us without a visit to J Dusi Winery. Admittedly, it’s personal.
We first met Janell Dusi in the mid-2000s at a roadshow tasting for Paso Robles wineries held at a hotel in Santa Monica. At that time, she was pouring her first commercial vintage of Zinfandel made from the family’s historic Dante Dusi Vineyard off the west side of Highway 101. Planted by Janell’s great-grandparents in 1945, the amazing fruit had been traditionally sold to other wineries who were proud to designate the vineyard on their label. But Janell took the family business to the next level by making and bottling the wine under her J Dusi brand.
Since then, we’ve visited Janell many times, initially at the family home on the vineyard property and more recently at the winery/tasting room on Highway 46 West. Whether they know it or not, Janell and her family have become our Paso family.
Janell has also grown the wine selections beyond the flagship Zinfandel and even added another brand to the mix – Paper Street.
The first thing we noticed on this trip was how much the outside tasting area had expanded, with lots of comfortable seating and umbrellas, much of it colored the signature Dusi blue.
Then, Janell greeted us and, although we forewent our usual hugs, it was with immense joy that we sat down with her to talk about the last several months and sample several of the new releases.
We started with the 2020 Pinot Grigio. We found this to be super bright and fresh. Its low alcohol makes this a true summer wine, although we drink a lot of this all year long. It is not just popular with us, as Janell’s customers love it and buy it by the case. One of them even referred to it as “Dusi Water”, a term a stickler might find offensive, but not Janell. Hey, whatever keeps the customer happy, right? [Just a thought from us – much like in our neck of the woods, Agua Dulce means Sweet Water in Spanish, maybe she should rename it – not Acqua Dolce – but Acqua Dusi. What do you think, Janell?]
Second to be tasted but always first in our hearts was the Dante Dusi Zinfandel. This was the 2019 vintage and we noted that it was fruity and spicy [specifically with pumpkin bread spices] with a nice long finish. Classic Dusi Zin.
The next two wines were from the 2017 vintage. The Escandalosa is a blend of – not Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre – but Zinfandel, Syrah and Mourvedre. We’re not sure if the “scandal” is the unusual blend or what happened at the naming party that came up with it, but it had a beautiful cherry color and great spices from the Zinfandel. The other 2017 was the Caterina’s Vineyard Syrah, which was full bodied, well rounded, with notes of white pepper and a looong finish. Sadly, the 2018 version of this is the “last Syrah” from this great vineyard, although other varietals will be forthcoming.
We also tasted one of the wines from the Paper Street label – the 2017 Narrator. This is a classic GSM [40% Grenache, 40% Syrah and 20% Mourvedre] and was just perfectly balanced. The Paper Street vineyard was planted by Janell’s brother Matt and their father Mike on the West side of Paso Robles. Planted not only to Zinfandel, but also to Mourvedre, Grenache, Syrah and Clairette Blanche [among others], Janell is doing great things with this vineyard, as are other wineries in the area. The name Paper Street has a double meaning, referring both to the vineyard not having a true address and as an homage to Matt’s favorite movie, Fight Club. Ditto with the name Narrator, referring both to Mike Dusi and to the Narrator in the movie.
Janell also told us of an exciting new development involving J Dusi Wines. You may have heard of the emerging market for canned wines. My initial observations have been these tend to be lower-end wines designed for maximum quaffing. Maker Wine Company (www.makerwine.com) is taking a different approach – focusing on quality wines from smaller producers in a convenient canned package. Janell’s contribution to the brand is a blend of the Zinfandels from the Dante Dusi and Paper Street vineyards. This should really “up” the perception of what canned wine is all about.
It was wonderful to visit with Janell, but she had a winery to run. We said our goodbyes after quick tastes of the yummy 2016 Zinfandel Port and the 2018 Haute Blanc Viognier Port and headed out, knowing we would be back to J Dusi on our next trip to Paso Robles wine country.
1401 CA 46 West
Paso Robles, CA 93446
Michael and Karen Perlis have been pursuing their passion for wine for more than 30 years. They have had the good fortune of having numerous mentors to show them the way and after a couple of decades of learning about wine, attending events, visiting wineries and vineyards, and tasting as much wine as they possibly could, they had the amazing luck to meet Eve Bushman. Michael and Karen do their best to bring as much information as possible about wine to Eve’s Wine 101 faithful readers.
NEW ORLEANS, LA —The Emeril Lagasse Foundation celebrated its 19th annual fundraising weekend on November 5th and 6th in New Orleans, raising a Foundation record $3.75 million to support its mission to create opportunities to inspire, mentor, and enable youth to reach their full potential through culinary, nutrition, and arts education, with a focus on life skills development.
“After missing our live event last year, we were happy to come back together in person and celebrate with an amazing lineup of chefs and auction items,” says Chef Emeril Lagasse. “Alden and I remain ever grateful for the generosity of our donors, sponsors, participating chefs, and the New Orleans community. Their continued support changes the lives of vulnerable children in our community.”
The Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s annual fundraising weekend kicked off with events at the New Orleans Board of Trade and The Sazerac House. The Fillmore hosted Carnivale du Vin 2021, the foundation’s nationally recognized wine auction and gala dinner. Culinary greats Frank Brigtsen, Nina Compton, Ken Frank, Ken Lum, Ronnie Rainwater, and Frank Szymanski brought together the best in wine and food for a night of charitable giving. Four hundred guests experienced a four-course meal created by Chef Emeril’s team and culinary students from the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts. Hospitality students from Café Hope, Café Reconcile, and Pro-Start received training from Emeril’s front-of-house staff, and together, they formed the service team for the special evening.
The live auction highlight was a six-liter bottle of The Setting Wines 2019 Glass Slipper Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon that sold for $1 Million—shattering the World Record as the most expensive single bottle of wine ever sold at auction. “We are humbled to be able to offer $1 million to the Emeril Lagasse Foundation and its efforts to support youth, ” said Don Steiner, purchaser of the world record breaking lot.
Co-founded by Jeff Cova and Noah McMahon, who both come from philanthropic backgrounds, and famed winemaker Jesse Katz, The Setting Wines first broke world records when a 750-ml bottle of their wine sold for $350,000 at Carnivale du Vin in 2017. “We are truly honored and amazed to make history again, especially as part of an event that means so much to us,” said McMahon, who serves on the Advisory Committee of the Emeril Lagasse Foundation. “Inspiring others in meaningful ways is a huge part of our brand ethos, so we couldn’t be more thrilled to know this record-breaking sale will have such a big impact on the Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s mission to create uplifting educational and developmental programs for children.”
The Setting Wines 2019 Glass Slipper Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is sourced from the prestigious Glass Slipper Vineyard, located in Napa’s renowned Coombsville AVA. Made of 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, this bottling is the first wine ever to be released from this vineyard, which is owned by long-time vintners, Paul and Suzie Frank. Marrying meticulous farming, of which the Franks are known for, with the world-class winemaking skills of Katz, the 2019 Glass Slipper Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is an exquisite wine that showcases finesse and age-ability while perfectly encapsulating the elegant nuances of the region. Only 75 cases and one six-liter bottle were produced.
The Emeril Lagasse Foundation continually provides capital and programmatic support to eligible non-profit organizations across the nation through its Community Grants Program. Recent grant recipients include Covenant House New Orleans, Second Harvest Food Bank, Arc Broward, Food for Thought, and NOCCA. The signature program of the Emeril Lagasse Foundation is Emeril’s Culinary Garden & Teaching Kitchen. This program was created to make a direct, lasting impact on the lives of young people. It reflects the foundation’s mission to inspire, mentor, and enable youth while broadening its reach nationally. Currently, there are five garden & kitchen programs around the country.
Sponsors for the weekend included Visit South Walton, Wicks Family Foundation, All Charities Ocean Reef, The Solomon Family, Buffalo Trace, Abita, GHMumm, Center for Restorative Breast Surgery, Jones Walker, Shipt, Bradshaw, GoodCook, Sands Cares, Marquee Brands and James G. Fifield Family Trust.
About Emeril Lagasse Foundation: Founded in 2002 by Chef Emeril Lagasse and his wife Alden, Emeril Lagasse Foundation is a 501c(3) public charity headquartered in New Orleans. The foundation’s mission is to inspire, mentor and enable youth to reach their full potential through culinary, nutrition, and arts education with a focus on life skills development. Since its inception, Emeril Lagasse Foundation has granted more than $15.5 million to children’s charities to support culinary, nutrition, and arts programs. The foundation was recognized as the 2016 Nonprofit of the Year by the Louisiana Association of Non-Profit Organizations. To learn more about the foundation and its beneficiaries, visit Emeril.org, or follow on Facebook, Twitter , or Instagram.
About The Setting Wines: The Setting Wines is a collection of luxury wines created by three friends: Jeff Cova, Noah McMahon and famed winemaker, Jesse Katz. Driven by their philanthropic backgrounds, Jeff and Noah partnered with Jesse to establish The Setting Wines in 2014, a brand that seeks to encourage the appreciation of the simple moments in life, embrace the transformative power of shared experiences, and give back in meaningful ways. Sourcing grapes from esteemed vineyards throughout Napa and Sonoma Valleys, The Setting produces high quality wines that express a delicate balance between purity of fruit and the unique characters of each vineyard site. Visit thesettingwines.com to learn more.
NEW YORK (PRWEB) – The Montecucco Consortium announced the end of the harvest and released its 2021 harvest report, which indicates an average quantity decrease of 20–25% compared with 2020 but excellent quality for the Sangiovese that arrived in the cellar.
The 2021 growing season was difficult. The April frost was a serious challenge for the region, in particular for wineries below 200–240 m ASL. A cold May caused an irregular budbreak, and summer drought stress contributed to further reducing harvest volumes. The unusual drought persisted as a problem from January to September: 204 mm of rain compared to an average of 450 mm annually during the last 20 years.
But favorable sunny weather conditions accompanied the flowering and the ripening of the grapes from June through September.
During the latter month, there were significant day-to-night fluctuations in temperature with variations as high as 15–16° C, significantly helping tannins soften and enhancing the aromatic profile of the wines.
Montecucco producers did their best to minimize the water stress conditions on the vines by controlling excessive vegetation and working the land almost daily to ensure a sufficient water supply. Some wineries were able to intervene with emergency irrigation systems. Thanks to this diligent management, producers reached the yield of 70 quintals per hectare required by the Montecucco Sangiovese DOCG regulations and 90 quintals per hectare required by the Montecucco DOC regulations. Montecucco winemakers were able to evaluate and manage the situation successfully, dividing the harvest into several phases according to the particular needs of each plot.
“We’re expecting the Sangiovese wines to age for a long time,” said Giovanni Battista Basile, president of the Montecucco Consortium. “We’re more than satisfied with the excellent health of the grapes that arrived in the cellar, with no traces of either downy mildew or powdery mildew. The ‘clean’ work in the vineyards that is in the DNA of our territory—with 85% of wineries certified organic—encouraged these results and helped make the vines more resistant. Our winegrowers have made a significant effort to implement earth-friendly practices such as organic pest management and the use of natural and organic products, as well as engaging in innovative studies and research projects on environmental sustainability, in partnership with important institutes and university centers.”
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About the Montecucco Consortium (Consorzio Tutela Vini Montecucco):
Founded in 2000 and representing 68 wine producers, the Montecucco Consortium is committed to the stewardship, protection and promotion of the Montecucco wine denomination. The consortium ensures high quality through a set of formal production guidelines for the entire winemaking process, from cultivation to bottling, including a strict traceability system that allows consumers to know the origin of each wine purchased. The consortium’s ability to provide day in and day out support to local growers, assist in brand promotion and focus on the quality of the end product have earned the organization the trust of numerous leading estates and attracted some of Italy’s most renowned producers. For more information visit conosorziomontecucco.it
The heritage spice and extract company breaks into bitters category with two classic flavors to elevate cocktails and mocktails this holiday season
WINONA, Minn.,/PRNewswire/ — Just in time for holiday toasts and seasonal sips The Watkins Co. is bottling everything it has learned from 150 years of perfecting flavor and bringing it to liquor stores and cocktail/mocktail lovers across the U.S. Watkins Bitters are crafted from natural, high quality ingredients to create complex flavor profiles in two classic varieties: Aromatic and Orange. They are the perfect holiday complement to top shelf liquor selections or as a flavor boost to winter mocktails.
The new Watkins Bitters are made with premium-grade quality fruits and spices, with no artificial colors or flavors:
- Watkins Aromatic Bitters are crafted with Watkins vanilla beans and flavors derived from natural ingredients like dried tart cherries, hibiscus flowers and quassia bark.
- Watkins Orange Bitters combine the sweet zest of orange with Watkins flavor favorites clove and cardamom in this classic cocktail enhancer.
A trusted brand in home kitchens for generations, this new offering is a natural step for Watkins who saw an opportunity to bring its at home flavor expertise to a growing number of home cocktail and mocktail enthusiasts. Both bitters come in 4 fl. oz. and 11 fl. oz. glass amber bottles with a beautifully-designed label to add a note of distinction to any home bar.
“It is not just home cooking that saw an upward trend this past year; we now have quite a few home cocktail enthusiasts who have been perfecting their mixology skills,” says J.R. Rigley, president, The Watkins Co. “Our focus has always been on providing consumers with the very best at home flavor experience, so moving into the beverage category and meeting a need for bitters carefully crafted with natural ingredients is a great opportunity for us—and great news for home bar aficionados looking for accessible, high quality flavorings.”
All Watkins products are Non-GMO, free from dyes, high-fructose corn syrup, added MSG and other artificial ingredients. Watkins Aromatic Bitters and Watkins Orange Bitters are now available online at Watkins1868.com, amazon.com and at select liquor stores nationwide. The MSRP is $8.99 (4 fl. oz.) and $14.99 (11 fl. oz.).
About The Watkins Company
Crafted in the USA since 1868…Naturally.™ Watkins is committed to making gourmet flavoring products from high-quality ingredients, meaning they have no artificial flavors and colors, GMOs, corn syrup or gluten. From the bluffs high above the Mississippi River in Winona, Minnesota, comes the purity of The Watkins Company. Our tried-and-true products have been good and natural through and through since 1868.
NAPA VALLEY, Calif., /PRNewswire/ — De Négoce has been named “Wine Company of the Year” in the 18th Annual Critics Challenge International Wine & Spirits Competition. The company also received an unprecedented 53 medals, 35 of which were platinum and gold with 90 to 94-point scores for wines priced from $12 to $29.
“New company de Négoce, the brainchild of well-known negociant Cameron Hughes, is deserving of major kudos for delivering amazing value in bottlings from up and down the American West Coast and featuring famed appellations like Atlas Peak, Diamond Mountain District, Carneros and others,” said Rich Cook, director of Critics Challenge.
The platinum award winners were the OG N.41 2018 St. Helena Cabernet Sauvignon ($29), OG N.89 2018 Walla Walla Cabernet Sauvignon ($18), and OG N.132 2018 Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon ($25). Each received 94 points. Additionally, the winner of Best Cabernet Franc was de Négoce’s 2018 OG N.85 Cabernet Franc from Walla Walla Valley, while Best Petite Sirah went to their 2018 OG N.58 Petite Sirah from McDowell Valley. Both wines received gold medals and 91-point scores and are sold for $16 and $14, respectively.
Founded by wine critic Robert Whitley in 2003, Critics Challenge is one of the most important and respected wine and spirits competitions in the world. Entries are judged blind by noted wine and spirits journalists, bloggers and critics. With an unprecedented level of transparency, Critics Challenge publishes the comments and scores from the individual judges on the competition results page for all award-winning entries.
“We are thrilled to have received such accolades and high scores from this prestigious competition,” says Cameron Hughes, founder of de Négoce. “We want people to know that we are not selling discount wine. We are offering amazing value and access to high-end, award-winning luxury wines that would normally sell for 4 to 8 times the price. There is a big difference!”
Since launching last spring, de Négoce has shipped over 200 unique wines and well over 100,000 cases. More than 80 new wines have shipped in 2021 alone, with 80+ in the pipeline for the remainder of the year. For more information or to join the de Négoce mailing list, please visit deNegoce.com.
About de Négoce
Founded by Cameron Hughes, de Négoce offers the opportunity to pre-purchase ultra-premium wines from around the globe before they are bottled. Known in the trade as En Primeur or “futures,” buying wine prior to bottling allows for pricing at 60 to 80 percent less what you would pay under its original label. The platform also has an online bottle shop where customers can mix and match their own selections of ready-to-drink wines. For more information, please visit deNegoce.com.
A great invitation came my way to meet the owner of an Italian winery and taste three of his wines with about 40 other professionals. This time it was:
“…Join us via Zoom as Count Francesco Marone Cinzano, owner of Col d’Orcia, shares a first taste of his new 2016 Brunello di Montalcino 5-star release, together with two other top wines from his organically farmed estate…Poggio al Vento Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG 2013 – another stellar, 5-star vintage – and Olmaia Sant’Antimo Cabernet DOC 2015 (great vintage as well!) All three wines are produced entirely with organically grown grapes farmed on the Col d’Orcia estate and bottled on location.”
Takeaways from Time with The Count
Let me start by saying that right off there was something Capra-esque and Cary Grant-ish about Count Francesco Marone Cinzano, as he warmly greeted our group from Col d’Orcia (pronounced Col-Door-Cha) with amazing photos of his property while wearing a vineyard colored green scarf and jacket that was in perfect “balance” for the scenery.
- Fifty percent of the land in Montalcino is natural woodland.
- They are located in a natural park, and a designated UNESCO territory.
- The Count feels “a duty” to “protect the environment” that he has inherited.
- There is an oak tree in the vineyard that is four and a half centuries old, and is a “symbol of care for nature.”
- They have invested a lot into Research and Development. Though going 100% organic wasn’t so difficult as “little had to be done to do so.”
- The Brunello is 100% Sangiovese grapes. The wine is made to be paired with food, which is the “concept of drinkability and food pairing.” The wine also has an “incredible intensity in aroma and taste.”
- The soil is a mix of clay, sand and a high level of limestone that gives “quality” to the “tannins.”
- Families, and their pets, have been on the estate for decades. As well as a bee population, grains to make pasta and other animals that live there include sheep, goats, poultry and pheasants.
- “A happy winemaker produces a good wine…(and they also have) “the fruit of a magic formula.”
- They grow Pinot Grigio, Vermentino, Chardonnay, Syrah, Merlot and other wine grapes on the property.
As one of the original estates of Montalcino and now the largest certified organic estate in Tuscany, Col d’Orcia is a leader in Brunello di Montalcino, helping to define and promote one of Italy’s most prestigious wine regions. Tradition, integrity and sustainability are the pillars of the estate, whose classic style wines are celebrated all over the world. Proudly defined as an ‘organic island,’ Col d’Orcia is committed to maintaining the natural environment in which it operates and has, for many years, employed organic farming practices.
About the Family
Col d’Orcia has a rich winemaking history dating back to the 1700s. Today, the estate is owned and managed by Count Francesco Marone Cinzano. A world traveler with boundless energy, the Count is a tireless ambassador for his estate as well as the Montalcino region. Under his leadership, plantings have expanded exponentially at Col d’Orcia and the estate has been transformed into an organic farm.
My Notes on the Wines (in italics), following notes from the technical sheets
Brunello di Montalcino 2016
14.5% alcohol. On aging, “4 years, 3 of which in 25-50 and 75 hl oak casks from Slavonia and Allier followed by at least 12 months of refinement in the bottles placed in storage at controlled temperature.” $59.99
This wine is a blend from all of the vineyards in the estate. Lots of red berries on the nose, as well as earth, Italian plums, and spice all in a nice balance on the nose. The taste delivered those same fresh and fruity red berries, tannins and a crispness noted by the Count.
Poggio al Vento Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG 2013
15% alcohol, “The wine is aged a minimum of six years prior to release; four years in Slavonian and French oak casks followed by at least two years refinement in bottle.” $162.99
This Riserva is a limited release with less than 12 thousand bottles and could age for quite some time, according to the Count, 10 more years or so. The Count called it an “elegant” wine and none of us disagreed. The nose was huge with notes of red fruit again, but also whiffs from a well-tended vegetable garden, peppery and lots of minerals. Going in for a taste I found it both lively and spicy with medium tannins and acidity. I was craving the pasta I planned for dinner about now.
Olmaia Sant’Antimo Cabernet DOC 2015
14.5% alcohol. Aging notes include, “The wine is aged 18 months in new French oak barriques and a small portion in American barrels, followed by a further 8 months refinement in bottle.” $68.99
The name Olmaia means Elm Tree in Italian according to the Count. This Cabernet, of course, was nothing like the red fruit of a Sangiovese. It was all dark fruit, sweet tobacco, milk chocolate with a creamy balance between the fruit and spice on the nose; on the palate came the same notes, but also dark and dusty fruit, and what the count referred to as “herbs, spices and minerality.”
Eve Bushman has a Level Two Intermediate Certification from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET), a “certification in first globally-recognized course” as an American Wine Specialist ® from the North American Sommelier Association (NASA), Level 1 Sake Award from WSET, was the subject of a 60-minute Wine Immersion video (over 16k views), authored “Wine Etiquette for Everyone” and has served as a judge for the Long Beach Grand Cru and the Global Wine Awards. You can email Eve@EveWine101.com to ask a question about wine or spirits
ROSE HILL, N.C. (PRWEB) – The largest winery in the South, Duplin Winery of Rose Hill, has broken ground on the family-owned winery’s third exciting location. Located on 70 acres at the previous Hombre Golf Club, Duplin Winery is building a 35,000-square-foot complex that will be the home of an award-winning, laid-back Southern-style wine tasting experience featuring specialty drinks, gourmet foods, merchandise, live entertainment and America’s Favorite Sweet Wine. It is expected to open in early 2022. Representing an initial $15 million investment, the attraction will employ more than 50 people. Over 20 acres of the property will be dedicated to conservation and preserving the land’s natural beauty.
An award-winning winery, Duplin is known for “cool, sweet & easy” sipping wines. Accompanied by frozen cocktails, signature homemade crackers and gourmet Muscadine cheese dip, Duplin’s relaxed and fun-filled guided wine tastings are extremely popular. The tasting station in Panama City Beach will offer guests the opportunity to sample assorted Duplin wines as guests are entertained with fun facts about muscadine grapes, Southern winemaking, rich Duplin family history and the “Life is Sweeter with Duplin” experience. Hand-bottling demonstrations will be accompanied by a presentation about the winery’s early days when Duplin first sold its wines in mason jars before moving to wine bottles. The signature mason jar remains a beloved item among Duplin wine fans, as select wines are offered in jars.
“We’re really excited about bringing our laid-back Carolina lifestyle to Panama City Beach,” said Jonathan Fussell, co-owner/president of Duplin Wine Family and head of the winery’s Tasting Destinations. “In the wine country of North Carolina, we’re serious about our wines but relaxed about life. We’ll be creating a place where folks can relax, listen to live music, and learn a little more about our wines. We expect to host groups, parties and families. Adults will enjoy it, and kids will, too. In addition to our wines, we’ll be serving our refreshing Sweetzer frozen drinks, which can be made in non-alcoholic versions. Families will find this a unique attraction that everyone can enjoy.”
“My family has been making wine in Rose Hill, North Carolina for more than 45 years,” Fussell continued. “Over these years, experience has helped us learn how to become more than just a winery. We’ve learned how to create a true entertainment destination, a place where people enjoy hanging out, can be comfortable bringing friends and family, and come to love the whole Duplin way of life,” Fussell said. “In 2015, we opened our second location in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and its success exceeded all our expectations. The laid-back beach atmosphere of Panama City Beach is a perfect fit for Duplin’s COOL SWEET and EASY lifestyle and once we’re open, our guests will be able to enjoy wine tastings, live music and wine production six days a week. Eventually a wedding chapel, vineyards and club cottages will be built to expand our initial vision.”
Duplin Winery is the largest wine production facility on the East Coast. Both co-owner Dave Fussell, Jr., who serves as president and CEO of Duplin Winery, and his brother, Jonathan Fussell, are deeply involved in the day-to-day operation of the winery, leading tastings, having a hand in the wine-making process and sharing their “Life is Sweeter with Duplin” vision.
“We believe in being hands-on at Duplin,” said Jonathan Fussell. “We’re proud to share our sense of family and commitment to excellence with the guests we have, and we’re looking forward to making a lot of new friends at our new Panama City Beach location.”
More information about Duplin Winery and its future Panama City Beach location can be found at http://www.duplinwinery.com.
About Duplin Winery
Family-owned Duplin Winery, headquartered in Rose Hill, N.C., is the largest winery in the South and listed as the 36th Largest Winery in America by Wine Business Monthly magazine. It produces some of the best-selling sweet wines in America. Specializing in wines made from the muscadine grape, Duplin is the largest muscadine winery in the world with a tank capacity of 2.1 million gallons. Duplin Winery grows its own grapes in North Carolina, and works with over 60 farming families to buy grapes in FL, GA, NC, SC and MS. Its plans include planting an additional 100 acres of grapes in the Panhandle region to support its newly announced Panama City Beach location.
Started by D.J. Fussell, Sr., in the 1970s, Duplin Winery is now owned and managed by a third generation of Fussells. Dave Fussell, Jr., serves as president and CEO of Duplin Winery, and Jonathan Fussell leads the Duplin Winery marketing division and serves as president of Duplin Wine Family.
Duplin wines have won several awards over the years, including honors normally given to wines from the classic West Coast wine belt such as Impact’s Hot Brand Award and Beverage Information Group’s Fast Track Award. Duplin wines have been featured in Martha Stewart Living, Elite magazine, and numerous regional news media.
Duplin wines are currently sold in sixteen different states in the South, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest and ship to 47 different states.
DUNDEE HILLS, Ore. /PRNewswire/ — Sokol Blosser Winery, founded in 1971 by Bill and Susan Sokol Blosser and now under second-generation leadership, will mark 50 years of growing and making signature Willamette Valley wines in 2021 with a year-long celebration.
As part of the celebration, Sokol Blosser will revisit its first vintage with a 1970s Flash Sale on Tue., Feb. 2. For one day only, its 2018 Redland Estate Cuvée Pinot Noir will be available on its website for $6.75 per 750 ml bottle – the very same price of the winery’s first vintage of Pinot Noir in 1977. (Limit of 12 bottles per person, while supplies last).
“This is a major milestone for us,” said Alison Sokol Blosser, CEO of Sokol Blosser Winery. “We are one of the few founding wineries in the Willamette Valley that has not only remained family-owned and operated, but has continued to grow. My brother Alex and I learned the business from working alongside our parents, and we’re so grateful for the strength and wisdom that’s enabled us to not just survive but thrive for 50 years. We’re excited to celebrate all year long with our customers, trade and industry partners!”
On top of its 1970s Flash Sale, Sokol Blosser will mark the occasion with a series of special bottlings, tasting room activities (when it’s safe) and wine club offerings including:
- Exclusive anniversary bottling of 2018 Old Vineyard Block Dundee Hills Pinot Noir with a retro label that evokes the brand’s original 1970’s label design and shape (SRP $60; available direct from the winery only).
- A special Instagram and Facebook Live tasting with wine expert Leslie Sbrocco on Feb. 10 featuring Susan Sokol Blosser and Alison Sokol Blosser.
- Fireside chats and online tastings (via Zoom) with Bill and Susan Sokol Blosser for media, trade and consumers.
- When the tasting room reopens, guests will step back to the 70s with 50th
Anniversary flights featuring family favorites and library wines, a 1970s Spotify playlist (free to download!) with a groovy soundtrack, and special surprises for guests who arrive in ’70s cars or are celebrating 50th milestones of their own.
“It’s a privilege to farm these vineyards and create wines that reflect the exact hillsides where our parents started 50 years ago,” said head winemaker Alex Sokol Blosser. “Our wines have improved year after year, and it’s a testament to our parents’ original belief that the Dundee Hills and Willamette Valley would indeed be a fine place to grow grapes and make wine.”
A Half Century of Accomplishments
In December 1970, Bill and Susan Sokol Blosser purchased five acres of land in the Dundee Hills (a former prune orchard), and soon thereafter planted it to Pinot Noir and other varietals. By 1980, the Sokol Blossers had expanded their holdings to 72 acres and today the winery farms 105 acres of estate vineyards under vine. Over its 50 years, Sokol Blosser has made history with a number of accomplishments:
- Sokol Blosser opened the first purpose-built winery tasting room in Oregon in 1978.
- Sokol Blosser was first recognized for its environmental stewardship in 1983 by the U.S. Soil & Water Conservation District.
- Evolution Lucky No. 9 White Blend was introduced in 1998, paving the way for a whole new category of white blends in the marketplace.
- Sokol Blosser was the first winery in the world to have a LEED-certified winery building in 2002 for its underground barrel cellar.
- Sokol Blosser’s Estate Vineyard received full USDA organic certification in 2005.
- The second generation took the reins in 2008 as co-presidents. Today, Alison Sokol Blosser is CEO and Alex Sokol Blosser is Winemaker.
- In 2013, Sokol Blosser opened a stunning new tasting room designed by Brad Cloepfil from Allied Works Architecture which raised the bar for hospitality and wine country experiences in the Willamette Valley.
- In 2015, the winery received coveted B Corp Certification for its high standards of social and environmental performance and accountability.
- Sokol Blosser introduced Oregon’s only nationally distributed box wines in 2020, with Evolution Pinot Noir and Lucky No. 9 White now available in 1.5- liter boxes.
About Sokol Blosser Winery As one of the pioneering wineries of the region, Sokol Blosser has played a key role in developing and shaping the now-prominent Oregon wine industry. The winery remains family owned and operated, with the second generation now at the helm: siblings Alison and Alex Sokol Blosser. Achieving B Corp certification in 2015, the winery creates wines of world-class quality, produced in a sustainable manner, reflecting the distinctive flavors of the grapes, soil and climate. The winery produces Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, sparkling wines, Riesling and small quantities of single block Pinot Noir under its Sokol Blosser brand, and a white wine, red blend, Pinot Noir, sparkling wine, Riesling, and Chardonnay and Oregon’s first nationally distributed box wines under Evolution label. Visit http://www.sokolblosser.com/ and follow @sokolblosser and @evolutionwines on Instagram and Facebook.