November 1st, 2009

Hi all

Well its been quite a busy Fall.

The 2009 Wine: All the fermentations, rose and red, are complete.

The rose for this year will be a blend of 60% Grenache and 40% Cinsault. A little different from last year (60/40 the other way), but the fruit this year from the two varieties seems to want to play nicer together in a little more grenache-dominant mix. Flavors and color will be very similar to the 2008, so I hope those who purchased the 2008 will come back for this one.

The Cotes du Rhone red is a wee bit better this year – the fruit quality is up, so there will be a bit more structure and roundness this year. I am sticking with the blend of 10-15% barrel aged and the rest tank aged -its the way to go for a fruit-forward food-friendly wine.

The reserve wine – 100% barrel aged (12 months) 100% grenache for 2009 is going to be great. This year’s old-vine fruit is really going to lend itself well to barrel aging, so I expect this one to be a real ‘keeper’.

By the way – I just re-tasted the 2008 Old Vine Reserve, and it is really coming around. I think this will be really special. I plan to bottle this at the same time I bottle the rose – probably in January. But, with only one barrel – 300 bottles – it won’t go far. I will probably only have enough for few select clients here in France…….and of course my friends who come to visit!!

The vineyard: Things in the vineyard are pretty quiet. With the harvest completed, its time to turn to preparing for winter: digging up the plants which have died; winter pruning; plowing to ensure good moisture retention. I have started the up-rooting process – looks to be about 400 plants to do again this year, so this will take me into December to finish.

I am going to start tackling dead vines in the “Old Vine’ vineyard behind the winery this year – perhaps do 1/2 this year and 1/2 next. I had left this alone last year. The plant spacing is much closer than in the rest of the vineyard, and I was reluctant to embark on pulling these vines until my skill with the back-hoe improved. I have a MUCH better feel for it now, so….here we go.

Wine Sales


The 600 bottles of 2008 red which I shipped to Noble Wines is SOLD OUT – – IN ONE MONTH !!

I can’t believe how well you foll0wed my instructions !!! Jeez Louise..when I worked at Boeing, people NEVER followed my direction this well…..hmmm…. must be the alcohol…..GOOD JOB !!

As many of you know, my very very very good friend Tamara Murphy, of Brasa Restaurant and The Elliott Bay Cafe, hosted a “Launch Party” for the 2008 Cotes du Rhone red last week. What a great turn-out and show of support from all of you….Tamara and Naomi Smith from Noble Wines had arranged for Tam to sell 30 boxes of the Cotes du Rhone….and she sold it all!!! (sorry for the rationing).

And even I made it to town ( of course for an ego stroke like that, how I could possibly have missed it, right) It was great to see so many of my friends who have come to share the adventure with me…old ones (like the group here that goes back 20+ years) and new ones. Thanks to all of you for joining us. Hope you had as good a time as I did.

The GOOD NEWS is that Noble Wines – based on your loyalty – has placed an order for another 1200 bottles. These are to be shipped within the next few weeks, and should arrive around year-end…SO KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK !!!!


All for now – I need to get out and pull up vines before the rains. Will let you know when the wine is on its way.

Thanks to you all for your support.

Be good out there.