Many reports from the U.K. say that Diageo has put up its wine brands for sale. They include Beaulieu, Sterling, Acacia and Provenance here.
It’s hardly a surprise, as wine is only 4 percent of the British giant’s portfolio and is less profitable than spirits and beer (Guinness).
The company sold the Beaulieu and Sterling real estate in 2010 to a real estate company in a lease-back deal. It didn’t sell Provenance, Hewitt Vineyards or Acacia or property outside Napa County like Chalone.
Major wine companies like Gallo, Trinchero and Constellation are also beefing up their spirits (and beer) portfolios though they remain committed to wine.
Grapegrower Stomp festival
This year’s Grapegrower Stomp harvest festival will be held at Dario Sattui’s Henry Ranch in the upper reaches of Carneros Valley on Aug. 22.
Sattui has put most of this pristine and little-known property in the Land Trust, and it’s a rare chance to see Napa Valley the way it once was.
This event always sells out instantly to members as soon as it goes on sale. It benefits farmworker education.
Terlato and Folio add Heidsieck Champagnes
Both Terlato Wines, which owns Chimney Rock and Rutherford Hill Wineries and Michael Mondavi’s Folio Fine Wine Partners here, are adding to their import portfolios.
Terlato has picked up Piper-Heidsieck Champagne. Folio is adding Charles Heidsieck Champagnes.
Both brands were acquired from Rémy Cointreau in 2011 by the Descours family’s Société Européenne de Participations Industrielles (EPI).
The Viticulture Enology Science and Technology Alliance (VESTA) of Napa Valley presents a series of wine workshops at the Upper Valley Campus of Napa Valley College in St. Helena this summer:
Retailing Wine: Customer Service Training Workshop, June 22, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Workshop instructor Elizabeth Slater of In Short Marketing is an authority on marketing wines, wineries and wine regions to customers. Workshop topics include customer satisfaction, events, increasing tasting room sales, social media, shaping your story, wine clubs. The cost is $300, $360 after June 15 with lunch included.
Unlocking Wine, Sensory Evaluations of Wines, July 15, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Presenter Melba Allen, wine export agent of OENO-COM France, will guide attendees through sensory test methods. Introduction to tasting, white and red sensory standards, palate attributes. This workshop is designed for tasting room staff and servers. Cost is $150 with lunch included.
Art of Home Brewing Aug. 15, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Dr. Barry Gump, Florida International University, instructor. For novice to intermediate home brewers. Attendees will learn about the home brewing process from simple extract brewing through mini-mash, all to grain brewing. This session will include some beer sensory activities. Cost is $100 with lunch included.
UC Davis Extension summer wine courses
UC Davis Extension offers a variety of courses for novice and experienced grape growers, winemakers and wine lovers. The following courses will take place July-September in Davis, unless otherwise indicated.
Online Introduction to Wine and Winemaking. Enroll through July 2 and complete by Sept. 21; $685.
Successful Home Winemaking. Aug. 29: Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.; $140.
Wine Microbiology Workshop. Sept. 2-3: Wednesday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m; $475.
Step-by-Step Winemaking Aug. 22-23: Saturday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Sunday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.; $375.
Wine Grapes: Identification and Use. Aug. 11-12: Tuesday-Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; $435.
Rootstock Workshop: Identification and Use. Aug. 10: Monday, 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. ; $275.
Introduction to Wine Analysis. Aug. 22: Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. ; $255.
Introduction to Sensory Evaluation of Wine. July 18-19: Saturday-Sun., 9 a.m.-4 p.m. ; $550.
Advanced Wine Tasting Aug. 15: Saturday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. $350.
Winery Accounting and Finance for Executives July 1: Wednesday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; $225.
24th annual OIV Wine Marketing Program July 20-31
For information or to enroll, call (800) 752-0881 or visit www.extension.ucdavis.edu/winemaking
The 10th anniversary of Direct, ShipCompliant’s annual Direct Shipping Seminar, will be on May 28 and 29 at the Napa Valley Marriott.
This conference delivers a wealth of information on the most recent direct shipping legislative changes, regulatory updates, latest industry trends and more.
Get details at www.shipcompliant.com.
Riedel’s says its Vinum Extreme Rosé glass has a specially designed bowl and diamond shape, creating a wider-than-normal surface area in the glass to improve evaporation, “intensifying the wine’s aroma’s and silkiness as it enters the mouth.”
Riedel’s website says it’s in the $$ class, but different online retailers have it for €69 or €62.90 for two or £4.75 each in boxes of 12 for restaurants and bars only. I certainly hope it’s the latter.
Riedel’s special Coca Cola glass is about $20.