Oenophilia – An obsessive disorder or just a way of life?

Swirl, Sniff, and Spit with your friend, Patrick

Where the Pf#<% have I been?

The Wine Bloggers Conference starts today so I thought I should get up off of my Divan (where I have been swirling, sniffing, and not-spitting while contemplating the complexities things enological) and get blogging.  Where have I been?  Why have you not been either educated or entertained at this once ever so hip URL?  Lots of lame excuses…some not so lame…but excuses none the less.  ENOUGH!

After from some serious misunderstandings with WordPress upon moving my domain, I have decided that a few brilliant posts from recent months are lost to the ether.  We have also been really focused on the development of our business – moving from a small botique brand into a larger wine company.  As many of you will know, the hunt for venture capital is always a rollercoaster ride.  The global economic crisis hit just as we were moving forward and has made things as nerve-wracking for us as for millions of others. So enough with the excuses.  I’m back and  blogging with a vengeance!

September saw a cool, last-minute, short-notice trip to Germany.  Unfortunately, we went to the only part of Germany that makes NO wine.  No prob.  We tried new and interesting wines from all over and drank even more beer. Look for pics on Flickr, videos on Viddler, and reviews on Snooth.

I did my usual turn as the Wine Educator for the Sonoma County Harvest Fair.  Over 300 smart folks realized if they went to my Wine 101 workshop, they would get to drink free wine. I did learn this year, that if I didn’t spit, I was much funnier by the third class of the day! I did seven over the course of the weekend with 8-14 wines poured at each class depending on my mood.  I also got to get on my soapbox about my favorite topics ranging from the politics of organic certification to new closures vs. cork to “Chardonnay/Sulphur/red wine/California wines give me headaches.  What should I do?”  WooHoo! Lots of fun and we tried some great wines.

My sister-in-law Samantha (btw: Happy B-day to you!) , who took over operations of Chateau Felice when Genevieve & I left about two years ago this week, got married there at the winery.  Beautiful bride.  Great new husband.  Lots of yummy wine. A grand family gathering.

Malia started First Grade.  I had to cope with my daughter now going to real school – sitting at real desks and bringing home real homework.  Yikes.  She now will occasionally call me, “Dude” before I remind her that, “I am not ‘Dude’, I am ‘Daddy’.”  Zoinks!  She is so incredibly beautiful – especially with her toothless, first-grade smile – and she constantly amazes me.

I am halway through my CERT training.  That is the Community Emergency Response Team made up of trained volunteers who will be able to assist emergency personnel as first-responders in the case of a catastrophe.  As you may know, here in California we are just waiting for the BIG ONE to hit.  This has been very valuable information for me and I highly encourage anyone who can to contact their Fire Department and inquire about these programs in your area.

Now I am off to hang with about 200 of the coolest geeks!  The are many more of us waiting to fill the world with our thoughts and opinons about wine, but alas, not all can gather at the river of Bacchus this weekend.  I’ll be keeping you all updated throughout the weekend.

Cheers!

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