Grape Minds

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Episode 54: The Araujo Family is Cultivating the Culture of Multi-Generational Wines in Napa


At this year's Naples Winter Wine Festival, records were shattered yet again with the charity fundraiser topping 20 million dollars for local children.  Wine royalty from around the world spent the weekend down the street from our studios, so we caught up with some of the luminaries of our favorite beverage.  First, we present here our conversation with the Araujo family; Bart and Daphne and their next generation, Jamie and Greg. We talk about sustainability not only of the land- but also the business- for future generations. It's a recurrent theme in Napa, where a familial culture of wine is taking root and bearing fruit like the Araujo's Ascendo Cellars.

Episode 53: The Family Steward of Historic Henriot Champagne, Gilles de Larouzière


As the Naples Winter Wine Festival kicks off with lavish auction lots and all the stars of the international wine industry, Gina and Julie get to sit down with the eighth generation owner of Maisons et Domains Henriot, Gilles de Larouzière. Through world wars and tariff wars, it's a small, family owned Champagne house that has held steady with one thing in mind: the culture and identity of what makes Henriot special.  

Episode 52: An Economist’s Take on the 100% Wine Tariff



This week we’re talking about the business side of wine - With the looming specter of a 100% tariff on French goods, including sparkling wine, several cheeses, and other disparate items- the US wine industry has been lobbying feverishly hoping to convince the United States Trade Representative not to put the threatened hike in place. Today is the last day for comments to be submitted, but Congress members are still hearing from industry leaders opposed to the tariffs. There is now a group of Republicans who have come out against the administrations’ tariffs- and the top domestic and European wine trade groups have signed a joint statement against them. 

An earlier, 25% tariff was already slapped onto all European wines back in October. There isn’t a firm deadline yet for this new one, but it can be implemented any time in the next few weeks. Although according to this article, the plan is to have a decision before DAVOS- which starts on the 21st. So this week, we’re talking with Professor of Finance Dr. Thomas Smythe about tariffs, the unique three- tier distribution system for alcohol in the US, and what competition from imports does for a market. We'll also talk about who really stands to lose when faced with a 100% mark-up.  


An Aside: There is something called a “Congressional Wine Caucus,” which I only just learned exists.

Episode 51: “Try” January with Unexpected Wines from Different Regions (Like Whites from Australia)


It would feel frivolous to talk about anything other than the wildfires devastating Australia right now. To support our wine making friends from the Land of Oz, we're trying a few varieties other than Shiraz to kick off "try" January.  If "dry" is more your thing- take some notes and plan your February breaking of the fast.

Episode 50: Bubbles for the Holidays


In this week's episode Julie and Gina taste bubbles from around the world to find some affordable sparklers to help you ring in the new year. 


Episode 49: Murder Ridge Winegrower Steve Alden Talks Bears, Soil, and Winemaking


In this week's grape minds Gina and Julie talk with Murder Ridge winegrower Steve Alden about the grape varieties preferred by wildlife along the Mendocino Ridge AVA.


Episode 48: Happy Beaujolais Nouveau Day!


The stacks of Beaujolais Nouveau cases have arrived in local wine stores, and Gina and Julie grabbed one of the first bottles in the area to gave it a whirl- alongside a year-old Beaujolais (not Nouveau, but definitely not old).

Episode 47: Thanksgiving Wine and a Conversation with Ian Burch of Archery Summit


This week we're talking about the wine that will grace our tables of gratitude on Thanksgiving day, from breakfast through the feast.  We also hear from wine maker Ian Burch of Archery Summit in Oregon.  Plus, we have a little taste of Cline Zinfandel.  Just because. 

Episode 46: Sonoma Wine country: “Recovery Starts Today”


With the Kincade Fire 88% contained, wineries in Sonoma County are open for business. In this week's Grape Minds, Gina and Julie get the latest from, Jordan Vineyard and Winery about how the fire and smoke could impact what's shaping up to be a good vintage. 

Episode 45: Merlot Month is Almost Over. Don’t Cry. Just Say #MerlotMe


There are so many ways to become part of the #MerlotMe movement and get your grape on with this lovely variety. In this week's episode, Gina and Julie come up with a few options while fighting through one of our hosts' palate challenge.