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 Next week we will offer three new ways for you to enjoy Clark-Claudon.    I can’t wait to share the news with you.  For now, I am watching  a continuous down pour outside my window. 

I have been asked, What does this do to the vineyard?  We were below the needed rain level about a month ago.  Now, we are well over.  The rain has been battering us for days.  The soil is completely saturated and the reservoirs are spilling. 

This can be a set up for terrace slippage and major erosion.  In addition, with bud break coming, heavy rain can knock off the tender buds. Plus, muddy vineyards and tractors do not get along very well.  Consequently, the cultivation that is usually happening at this time is at a standstill.

Thankfully, the erosion control system at our vineyard is serving it well.  To date, we have not lost any terraces and the cover crop & drainage system are preserving the top soil.  We are all hoping the rain will stop by next week.  If it does, all will be well.  As I have said before, growing grapes and making wine is not for the faint of heart!

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Premiere Napa Valley is a wonderful event where vintners auction off unique 5-20 case lots to national and international trade.  This year it raised a record breaking $2.4 million!  It is a relaxed day of seeing old friends, visiting with vintners and enjoying a wonderful lunch prepared by the CIA.

This year I left from PNV for a trip to Antigua, Guatemala to see my daughter Briana and her family.  Briana was there for a photo shoot documenting the work of Constru Casa and Transitions.  Contra Casa works with local Guatemalans to build homes.  Transitions helps rehabilitate men who have lost the use of their legs; victims of drug wars, political conflict or birth defects.

In many ways the contrast from Premiere Napa Valley to this work being done in Guatemala was extreme.  Yet, the vintners  of Napa Valley are some of the most generous people I know.  Through their association, Napa Valley Vintners, they too do much to give back.  Consequently, from Premiere Napa Valley to Antigue Guatemala, my soul is full.

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The 2011 Season has begun...

I love the smell in the winery right now; baby wine all fruity and lively as it goes to barrel.  I pull out the bung allowing all the wonderful aromas to leap out and then I stick in the “thief” to steal a taste.   Following the wines evolution is such a tough job, but someone has to do it!

In the vinyard, the air is crisp and moist.  The fog swirls around me.  The vines are bare and stark with short canes sticking out at strange uniform angles.

These vines do not have some kind of blight, rather they have been pre-pruned.  All the leaves now gone; the wild canes, once controlled by trellis wires, have been cut to about 2 ft.  This early “haircut” supports the health of the vine while  preparing it for the focused decisions made during the final pruning…The 2011 season has begun.

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Categories: Educate, Engage, Recent Postings, Uncategorized
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Clark-Claudon in Asia
Clark-Claudon Vineyards is an inaugural winery partner of Altruistic Wines, www.altruisticwines.com.  The new company rolled out in April with a Boutique Wines Festival in Hong Kong featuring 30 small artisan wine producers and the culinary creations of:
– Ken Frank of La Toque
– Josiah Citrin of Melisse
– Hosea Rosenberg –the season 5 winner of Top Chef
It was an amazing 6 day whirlwind of dinners, tastings, cultural experiences & great people topped by a $2500 (HK)/person gala. I would travel with that group of vintners & chefs any time any where!

Floods in Tennessee, Heat in Texas & Rain at Home
I returned from Hong Kong and then left for Tennessee two days later to participate in our friend and customer Tim Brinkmann’s Wine and Spirits charity event. Sadly, we were derailed by the floods…

Two weeks later I was off to Texas for a short hot market visit and wine dinner. The dinner at Boo Rays in Fort Worth was a night to remember; like no wine makers dinner I have ever experienced. I felt like I was in the bayou for sure. By the end of the evening I had 70 new … Read more

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Well, I don’t know if the stars are in line, but the moon was bright orange and beautifully full when I walked to my office this morning.  Don’t be impressed; it is only 20 yards from my house, but it was cold and crisp outside.  Add that orange moon peeking through the trees…absolutely awsome.  

So, what better day to be releasing our 2006 Three Stones.  It too is awsome & perfect for drinking by the fire or with a hearty meal.  At $48 a bottle it won’t break the bank either…of course your bank might already be broken…all the more reason for a $48 Napa Cab…as good or better than many Napa Cabs twice the price.

What could be better; a wonderful wine, at a bargain price while supporting the future of small production wines.

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© 2018 Clark-Claudon Vineyards
Photos by Briana Marie Photography