In late August we had the opportunity to attend the Family Wine Makers event in San Francisco. This two day, MASSIVE tasting event (seriously, check out our pics) featured wines from over 300 wineries from all over California. After a busy Saturday night at the shop, Sal, EV and Brittany flew to San Francisco early Sunday morning to meet up with a couple of EV’s college friends and our former employee, Nick, who recently made the move to San Francisco to make a go of it in the big city. Upon our arrival in The City, we got our grub on with some delicious omelettes at the Squat and Gobble in The Haight to prep our stomachs for some serious tasting to come.
The tasting was held at the Fort Mason Center on the water and as soon as we arrived, we hit the ground running. These events are a great opportunity for us to taste new vintages of our old favorites as well as find some new up and comers to bring into the shop. Even with two days, with a tasting this size, we had to divide and conquer. In addition to tasting, these events also give us the opportunity to order wines on the spot and talk to the sales reps, winery owners and wine makers about the wines. Two new wines we were very excited to order are the Carol Shelton “Wild Thing” Zinfandel, currently being featured on our by the glass menu, and a pinot noir from an up and coming winery, Cartograph. More than just the quality juice, it’s nice to meet the faces behind the product to know we’re doing business with good folks as well.
Another great opportunity to come out of the tasting was the chance to schedule a tasting event featuring Krupp Brothers wine. So, September 16th-18th, we will be pouring Krupp Brothers wines from the famed Stagecoach Vineyard with rep Brian Thompson joining us on the 17th to guide customers through the tasting and talk about the vineyard and the wines. Be sure to pay us a visit that weekend – opportunities like this don’t come around very often!
Over the two days, we started off with whites and then moved to reds. We tasted hundreds of wines each – too many to mention them all but here are some of the PHWM customer favorites: Ahnfeldt Wines, Beau Vigne, Cavus, Clos Pepe Vineyards, Edward Sellers, Elizabeth Spencer, Farella-Park Vineyards, Frank Family Vineyards, Hartwell Vineyards, Kosta Brown, Melville, Mi Sueno, McManis, Orin Swift, Patz & Hall, Paul Hobbs, Saxon Brown, Tablas Creek, and Valdez.
After a long day of tasting, we made a quick stop over for a beer and some appetizers at Bin 38, a wine bar near the Marina. Hungry for some hearty food, we then hiked it over to Roam for some artisanal burgers and tasty milk shakes. Roam features 100% grass-fed beef, free-range turkey burgers and even bison in a communal style dining setting. Adequately nourished, we headed to a nearby bar for more beer and decompressing. We never caught the name of it, but it was dark and a dive, just how we like it when we want to “check out” at the end of a long day. Fully pooped, the old folks (yet responsible) Sal and EV headed home for the night and Nick and Brittany hit the town. It doesn’t matter where they went, you probably wouldn’t want to go there anyway.
Day two of the tasting was much of the same, except we revisited some wines we had previously tasted to confirm we were all in agreement and to negotiate pricing on wines we wanted to bring into the store. The second day was a bit mellower because the entire time was dedicated to trade-only, providing much more face time with the winery reps.
By the end of day two we were all exhausted and ready to throw in the towel. All in all, it was an eventful couple of days filled with great wines and good eats. We know it looks like play – but trust us when we say that it’s a lot of work (and a lot of fun too)!