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Reason #1:  Check out the Episodes link on the new site www.wineexpedition.com.  It is the first of three episodes at Clark-Claudon Vineyards.  In the first, Tom is discussing fruit ripeness in the vineyard, next will be bass fishing in the reservoir & then a wine & cheese pairing on the vineyard cottage deck.  I hope you enjoy!

Reason 2:   It is raining! Hallaluja!  We are down 10 inches below normal.  Ugh!  First the economy and now an angry Mother…Mother Nature that is…but, today it is raining…oh the simple pleasures.

Thankfully our reservoir will be full by irrigation time.  Our spring fed creek, dry last fall, is now flowing beautifully.  We have a license to capture some of its wet glory for agricultural use.  Tom engineered a system that takes the water up over the hill and into the reservoir…little by little…it will be full just in time.

Growing grapes & making wine is so much like life; oh, thats right, this is our life…what doesn’t get us will give us character, complexity & grace.  Well, at least that is true for our wine.  

Two reasons to smile! … Read more

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Categories: Experience, Recent Postings
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Another beautiful WARM day in January!  The daffodils are beginning to pop & the air is balmy…hopefully we will be back to cold temps soon.  I probably should be worried, this doesn’t bode well for the vines, but I happily admit, I am caught up in the optimism that is surrounding the country.  Red, Blue or otherwise.  It feels good to be an American today!… Read more

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If you are looking for small producers with great wine and unique stories, Small Lot Wine Tours; www.smalllotwinetours.com, has just launched a site worth visiting.  We are happy to be one of their featured wineries for the month of December.

The site is not only beautiful, but also very informative.  This month it feature wineries whose mission statments include producing great wine as well as making a difference.  Check it out…… Read more

Categories: Recent Postings

Last evening, cooking pasta for dinner; Bocelli’s Italian strains wafting through the kitchen…hmmm, calls for red wine…a bottle of CC ’05 left over from a tasting two days ago…why not?…soooo yummmy!  Dark fruit, deep color, richly delicious…A perfect call…the simplicity of cooking pasta, beautiful music and a great glass of wine.   

I always wear a bracelet that says, “Live in the Moment.”   It may sound trite, but it helps me keep things in perspective.  Life is too precious to do it any other way…sending good wishes… Read more

Categories: Engage, Recent Postings

I usually love roller coasters.  They bring back memories of Santa Cruz, California; we whirled, and screamed through steep climbs, spiraling twists & turns. It kind of reminds me of today, but I am not screaming with joy on this roller coaster. 

Everyone in the Napa Valley wine industry has been pretty quiet, but there is no denying that the financial crisis is taking a toll.   Many restaurants & wine shops accross the country have a freeze on buying while those who are adding inventory are generally sticking to the under $30 wines.  It is not yet clear what this will mean.  I suspect that many small wineries & even some large ones will suffer & maybe have to sell.  In fact, Kirkland Winery just went on the auction block.

Family owned, small wineries are the soul of the Napa Valley.  Winemaking & its connection to nature is their passion while they drive quality, create excitement and assure that the legacy of Napa Valley will survive.  After 35 years in the wine industry, I include us in that group.  It is up to consumers to insure that the wineries & stories they have grown to appreciate will continue. This holiday … Read more

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Photos by Briana Marie Photography