Monday, June 13, 2011

Punx Beat LA

Full Disclosure: Dan wrote this, Aaron is innocent.

I am a life long SF Giants fan. I'd like to say I bleed orange and black, but every time I fall off my skateboard it comes out red. So going into the Belly of the Beast to sell some wine was a bit trying emotionally. Here are some of things I learned:

1. LA is ridiculously big and driving seems to be the only option. I think I saw 2 bikes the entire weekend. Walking in LA?
2. Not too many people talk about the Dodgers nor wear their apparel (and I am fine with that!).
3. LA has a great wine scene. Lots of great shops, bars and restaurant lists.
4. LA wine people are incredibly friendly and lack attitude.
5. LA to SF is an easy drive. But that bullet train will be a nice addition.
6. LA puts SF on a pedestal when it comes to food and wine. This seems weird because I assumed Angelitos think they are the best at everything.
7. Aaron misses LA and was 10x better than my car's GPS system.
8. We sold a lot of wine. Warm and fuzzy feelings leading to thoughts of what new oddball wine can we add this year with our extra funds.
9. The air is crap.
10. I like LA (no Love Randy Newman).

Don't expect me in Dodger Blue, but I am looking forward to a game in Chavez Ravine.

X - my favorite LA punk band

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Hitting the Pavement

We have two new wine release just out of bottle shock and are proud of them. Now it's time to hit the road and sell them. This is not an easy task for two guys with technical day jobs and not an ounce of salesmanship in them.

The wines do speak for themselves but many folks want a "story" or a "pitch". I think these videos summarize our pitch and idea of "hitting the pavement".

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Into the Drink

Spent the better part of this beautiful Bay Area morning in Napa doing the final blend for our 2009 Humboldt Pinot Noir. We basically have 2 60-gallon barrels (both 1-years), a half-barrel from Recoop, and 20+ gallons of topping wine. So how do you blend 170 gallons of wine from 4 different containers? The short answer is keep it simple; the long answer is try every possible combo and then, eventually, keep it simple.

--stop reading here if you don't care about barrel characteristics, methodologies and tasting notes---

Here's the breakdown of each container:

Barrel 1: 1-year Francios Freres Hungarian M+. Great dark cherry nose, finishes with lots of natural acid.

Barrel 2: 1-year ???? M+ (bought from Merry Edwards). Mild caramel and vanilla nose, incredible mouth feel, missing a bit on the finish (acid?).

Recoop: The nose is pure model glue. Taste doesn't matter because you think you are sooo high from that glue you just huffed. 30-gallons wasted.

Topping wine: light, bright and not out-of-slight. Not that much fruit and lots of acid.

Here is the Deux Punx methodology for wine blending:

Step 1. Try your initial best guess. 50/50 barrels 1 &2. Results: too much vanilla and not enough acid.

Step 2. Try the most extreme blend you can live with. 45/55. Results: Not enough structure and way too much fruit and acid.

Step 3. Split the difference. Results: BINGO!

Step 4. For shits-n-giggles try to see how much model glue wine you can sneak in to the blend. Answer: none.

Step 5. See how much topping wine you can sneak in. Try 10% and the 4%. Results: makes the wine typical and boring. Answer: none.

Step 6. Repeat Step 3. Results: 48/52 it is.

Final Blend. This wine is much more elegant and classic than our 2008. It has great potential to work perfectly with hearty meaty foods. That classic Elk Prairie fruit is in there!

Now what do you do with the remaining 50+ gallons of pinot? Hopefully we can fine out some of the model glue from the recoop and create a "party blend" for our kegs. Otherwise, sell it to the French and call it Syrah?