Clos de la Tech Vineyards

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Keith and Kimberly welcome…

Valeta Massey, Owner / Winemaker at Clos de la Tech Vineyards

Enjoy the Show (part 4 of 4)



Domaine Lois Louise is an 80-acre, close-planted, steep-slope vineyard. It resides at 1,700-feet, directly facing the Pacific Ocean. The weather is grueling, causing the yield of this vineyard to be the lowest of all our vineyards. The first wines were produced 628x471
in 2004.

ELEVATION: 1,700 ft

CLIMATE: Powerful marine influence, springs are cool to cold, summers are very mild and moderate, warm days and cool nights. Twisty Ridge and most of Cote Sud are above the fog line, basking in refrigerated sunshine, mid to late summer and autumn are glorious, very cool nights, warm days, a Pinot Noir paradise!
CLONES AND ROOTSTOCK: (114, 115, 667, 777)/(3309 & 101-14); (115, 459, 777)/RG; (115, 777, 828)/420A SOILS

Sweeny Stony Clay Loam; “Twisty Ridge” and “Cote Sud” are on a thin base version (18″) of this clay loam atop a subsoil of very fractured rock, creating superb drainage, pH=6.5 Domaine Lois Louise is on deeper loamy clay (same soil series) overlaying the same fractured rock subsoil, pH=6.5

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McIntyre Vineyards

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2012 Estate Chardonnay McIntyre Vineyards
“Le McIntyre Montrachet”
by Kimberly Faye

I love Chardonnay. There! I said it. It feels so good to make that confession. I have been a closet Chardonnay lover for many years but felt that to be regarded as a wine sophisticate I really had to simply tolerate Chardonnay as a precursor to the better varietals. It’s the go-to wine for girls night out or the drink of choice for happy hour. It’s the opening bottle at a dinner party… before we get to the good stuff.  McIntyreLogo

In my attempt to distinguish myself as a varietal snob, I proudly display Laura Holmes Haddad’s book, “ANYTHING but CHARDONNAY” in my wine-themed kitchen. I bought the book when I lived in Santa Cruz a few years ago. I was, at that time, completely immersed in Pinot Noir and therefore hid my Chardonnay passion.

ANYTHING but CHARDONNAY is a great quick resource guide for numerous varietals — including Chardonnay. Laura’s posture on Chardonnay is perhaps echoed by many. She says, “Poor Chardonnay. What began as a glorious wine from France is now more often a butter bomb with little character served in a plastic cup.”

Alas, Dear Laura, there is hope. The 25th Anniversary Santa Lucia Highlands 2012 Estate  Chardonnay is here to put the liquid fruit into it’s proper stemware. Save the plastic cups for those butter bombs Chards from Carneros. 

If you are inclined to compare, I recommend that you open a bottle of 2005 Jean Chartron Clos du Cailleret Monopole Rouge, Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru, France, alongside (for half the price) the McIntyre 2012 Estate Chardonnay. For that reason, I subtitled this wine review, Le McIntyre Montrachet.

McIntyre Vineyards magically found a way to bottle the Santa Lucia Highlands. The terroir and the grape form a perfect union in this Chardonnay and once you’ve met their combined strength, you want nothing more than to drink of the potion that will delight your palate and surrender your reserve to be anything less than passionate about Chardonnay for the rest of your life. 

McIntyre postures the 2012 Estate Chardonnay, “Like warm autumn sunshine.” Pale gold in the glass, this wine embodies the essence of the Santa Lucia Highlands with its aromas of baked golden apples, ripe pears, butterscotch and lemon cream pie. 

In the mouth, it has ample minerality, persistently pleasant acidity, delightful flavors of lemon bars, pear crème brûlée, pineapple-carrot cake and lemon meringue pie. Finishes with lively intensity, leaving a pleasant hazel nuttiness in its wake. This wine is a youngster, for sure. Best in mid 2014 through 2024, and beyond – McIntyre
Technical Tasting Notes
Name of Wine: 2012 Estate Chardonnay McIntyre Vineyards2012
Grape Variety: Chardonnay
Old/New World: New
Country: US
Region: Santa Lucia Highlands, CA
Vintage: 2012
Appearance: Clear with bright intensity golden core and clear rim
Nose: Clean with high intensity aromatics of golden delicious apples, pear, toast, pineapple and lemon pudding filled pastry.
Palate: Dry with low + acid, low tannin, medium alcohol. Characteristics of vanilla bean, tropical fruit and lemon cream tart with a hint of nuttiness.  Alluring and distinguished palate pleaser.
Conclusions: Potential aging: 7-10 years. This wine is meant to be savored on a summer evening with a baguette and Fourme d’Ambert with sliced apples and dried apricots. For dinner, pair this wine with asparagus covered in hollandaise sauce and a piece of grilled chicken.
by Kimberly Faye

Clos de la Tech

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Keith and Kimberly welcome…

Valeta Massey, Owner / Winemaker at Clos de la Tech Vineyards

Enjoy the Show (part 2 of 4)



Valeta graduated UC Berkeley with a degree in Engineering and Computer Science. She worked for Cypress as a senior SRAM design engineer until she left to manage Clos de la Tech’s vineyards and winery. de la tech

Uncompromised Pinot Noir

With caves tunneling deep into the Santa Cruz Mountains and vineyards so steep they have to be farmed with a one-of-a-kind tractor moved by cables, Clos de la Tech is one of the most ambitious and innovative Pinot Noir producers in California.

In the semiconductor business and in the business of making Pinot Noir, “Everything matters!” is our motto. And that holds true right down to the smallest detail of putting labels on our bottles. We start with filled bottles that have been aging for at least two years. These are called “shiners” because they come to the labeling line meticulously cleaned and polished. Every 20 or so bottles, we measure to be sure the front and back labels are exactly the same distance apart around the bottle. Millimeters make a difference!


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Mike Benziger

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Keith and Kimberly welcome Mike Benziger of Benziger Family Winery

Enjoy the Show ! (we are at the Benziger Family Winery and Vineyards)

Wine Dinner

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Keith and Kimberly chat about Wine Dinner and Friends

Wine Brings People Together

Enjoy the Show (part 1 of 4)

Wine Dinner Ideas…

Wine Picks: 6 bottles: 2 white & 4 red (8 people). Stick to classics like Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. Pre-plan who is dinner tablebringing  what.

Centerpiece: Keep the centerpiece short so you can see your pals across the table. Use real fruit, real candles or small flowers. After all, you’re real, right?

Etiquette: Serve Champagne prior to seating your friends because it works fastest. Place double sided name cards at the table so your friends don’t have to think.

Wine Place Setting: (From left right) Dessert, Red, White, Champagne and Water glass. Hydration is key.

Who sits where? Split up couples and don’t seat yourself at the head of the table.



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Castello Banfi


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Soda and Wine

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Keith and Kimberly welcome…

Ginny Lambrix and Payam Fardanesh.

The wines we will be opening are ….

Truett Hurst Russian River Valley 2012 Chardonnay

Truett Hurst Sonoma County Old Vine 2012 Luci Zinfandel

Truett Hurst Sonoma County Old Vine Red Rooster Zinfandel

Truett Hurst Sonoma County 2012 DragonFly Red Field Blend

Truett hurst Winemaker Ginny Lambrix: Winemaking begins with an understanding of the vineyard and allows for translation of its unique character ginny
through to the bottle. It requires spending a lot of time with the grower, the vineyard and the wine, to try and really understand what each should express in the finished wine.  Truett Hurst allows me to farm biodynamically and make wine. Usually viticulture (the growing of grapes) and winemaking are considered separate jobs. I got lucky – when I was looking to make the transition from viticulture to both winemaking and grape growing, Paul Dolan – a friend and fellow biodynamic practitioner- asked if I would be interested in working on the Truett Hurst project. I still have to pinch myself to believe its real.

Truet Hurst Vineyards: While the formation of the Truett Hurst partnership began in November of 2007, the founding partners worked together at Fetzer Winery years before. At that time, Paul Dolan was Director of Winemaking and hired Phil Hurst, fresh from UC Davis, to work as one of the winemakers. Years later, Phil would hire Paul’s son, Heath, right out of college to work for him. Thirty years after that first meeting, Paul, Heath, Phil and Sylvia Hurst formed a partnership in the Dry Creek Valley. Their vision: create world class wines using biodynamic farming principles. To complete that vision, Mark De Meulanaere and Virginia Lambrix were brought in.

Also on the show will be Payam, Owner Founder of Silk Road Soda. Visit

We started with Grandma’s recipe and a desire to share culture through a flavor first described by Hippocrates. We added our own sparkle, cucumber-mint-236x300kept it organic, and used just enough pure cane sugar to stay true to its heritage. The drink is a modern spin on a drink that was shared throughout the region.

The Silk Road Soda Company Inc., seeks to provide the world with flavorful, refreshing, and unique beverages. We strive for building long lasting relationships with our customers, employees, suppliers, stakeholders, and community – following the spirit of the ancient Silk Road. Learn more at:

It’s light, sophisticated and refreshing. Enjoy! 





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