With Hurricane Irene pummeling the East Coast at the moment, it’s hard not to appreciate how good we’ve got it out West. (And our prayers go out to you Easterners right now!) Sure, we have our fair share of problems, but lack of scenery and delicious flavors are not among them. And it’s tough to feel too bad about anything with a gorgeous view and a glass of wine in front of you, right?
Thankfully, our governor and state legislature feel the same: In a press release from the Wine Institute (which represents more than 1,000 California wineries and wine-related businesses that initiate and advocate state, federal and international public policy to enhance the environment for the responsible production, consumption and enjoyment of wine), California Governor Jerry Brown proclaimed this September California Wine Month for the seventh consecutive year.
“As an industry, California wine brings innumerable benefits to the state. Our scenic and historic wine-growing regions, a renowned cuisine based on food and wine pairings, and the opportunity to taste and purchase our world-famous wines bring an estimated 20.7 million tourists to our state each year. Our state’s wineries create jobs for 330,000 Californians and revenue from retail sales of $18.4 billion, including $1.14 billion in exports sales to 122 countries.” – Governor Jerry Brown
To view the complete proclamation, go to www.discovercaliforniawine.com/learn/governors-proclamation.
“California Wine Month is a time to celebrate the vibrant wines and wine culture of the Golden State,” says Nancy Light, Director of Communications for the Wine Institute in San Francisco. “That’s 112 distinct growing regions, 100 plus varietals, and a diversity of styles and prices based on the talent and dedication of our growers and vintners.”
“Here in California, there are dozens of events at wineries and other venues and more than 20,000 restaurants and retailers in California, New York and across the country will be putting the spotlight on California wines. Governor Jerry Brown has acknowledged the contributions of California wine to tourism, jobs, the environment and local pride with a special proclamation. It’s a fitting tribute to the hard work of our 3,400 wineries and 4,500 winegrape growers as we bring in the annual winegrape harvest.” – Nancy Light, Wine Institute
And with harvest just around the corner, California Wine Month will be commemorated by wineries and wine associations across the state, including the following events:
- Vineyard Lobster Feed: Claws for Celebration
September 3, 2011
Schweiger Vineyards, St. Helena
- Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast
September 29-October 2
locations across San Luis Obispo County
- Home Winemaking Workshop
(Special offer, educational seminar)
September 3, 2011
Delicato Vineyards, Manteca
- Free Tasting for California Residents
September 1, 2011 – September 30, 2011
Clautiere Vineyard, Paso Robles
- Wine Country Big Q (Live music, competition, food and wine, multi-winery event)
September 10, 2011
Sonoma Academy, Santa Rosa
For more information on these events and others near you, check out the Wine Institute’s handy visitor guide. Alternatively, if you live outside California and want to partake in the festivities, why not join the California Wine Club? They’ll send you regular shipments of artisan, hard-to-find California wines along with tasting notes, recipes, and information on the producers.
As for us at Parker Sanpei & Associates, we’ll be celebrating the month by drinking plenty of California’s “heritage” wine grape, Zinfandel. But what about you? What’s your quintessential California wine? Is it a punchy Napa Cab for scoring higher than top-pick Bordeaux in the Judgement of Paris tasting? Or is it Chardonnay for its widespread appeal and top sales? Or is it Pinot Noir for its star-turn in the film Sideways?