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Cru Wine Podcast | Stories From The People Behind Wine

Updated 2 months ago

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Marketing
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Cru shares the stories of the people behind wine. Each week we share with you one interview with an influential person in the wine industry. Guests include Brian McClintic MS, Marissa Ross, Michael Cruse, Bob Cabral, Francoise Peschon, Dustin Wilson MS, and many more!Learn more at http://crupodcast.com

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Cru shares the stories of the people behind wine. Each week we share with you one interview with an influential person in the wine industry. Guests include Brian McClintic MS, Marissa Ross, Michael Cruse, Bob Cabral, Francoise Peschon, Dustin Wilson MS, and many more!Learn more at http://crupodcast.com

iTunes Ratings

62 Ratings
Average Ratings
47
5
4
4
2

Awesome

By AudreyDY - Dec 07 2018
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I find this podcast inspiring!

Good stuff

By cdoc - Jan 27 2018
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Really great subjects / topics and questions. Very relaxed conversations.

iTunes Ratings

62 Ratings
Average Ratings
47
5
4
4
2

Awesome

By AudreyDY - Dec 07 2018
Read more
I find this podcast inspiring!

Good stuff

By cdoc - Jan 27 2018
Read more
Really great subjects / topics and questions. Very relaxed conversations.
Cover image of Cru Wine Podcast | Stories From The People Behind Wine

Cru Wine Podcast | Stories From The People Behind Wine

Latest release on May 04, 2020

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Cru shares the stories of the people behind wine. Each week we share with you one interview with an influential person in the wine industry. Guests include Brian McClintic MS, Marissa Ross, Michael Cruse, Bob Cabral, Francoise Peschon, Dustin Wilson MS, and many more!Learn more at http://crupodcast.com

Rank #1: How to Grow & Make Fine Wine in Extreme Conditions with Norman Hardie

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Norman Hardie, @normanhardiewinery, is the owner & winemaker of Norman Hardie Winery in Prince Edward County, Ontario, making some of the best Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and other Burgundian varietals in North America.

Learn more about Norman with the show notes here.

Norman is an incredibly well traveled winemaker with a highly trained palate. Having started his career as a sommelier with Four Seasons Hotels his intrigue of making the wines he loved so much, particularly Pinot Noir & Chardonnay, grew so much that he decided to go on a journey of working twelve harvests in six years in both hemispheres.

When the search for a vineyard site came to a close in 2003, he found himself in Prince Edward County, Ontario, Canada where the Norman Hardie Winery resides today. Making what chefs like David McMillin of the famed Joe Beef in Montreal call the, “finest white wines in all of North America,” Norman has an approach to winemaking that is not only classical in style but unusual at the same time.

We’ll get into some of the extreme tactics that Norman and his team have to employ simply to keep their vineyards alive, but one of my favorites he mentions is having helicopters hover over the vineyard to ward off frost. We chat about Norm’s story, planting a vineyard, keeping it alive, winemaking, and many other things in this conversation, which I thoroughly enjoyed and I highly recommend you grab a few bottles of his wine on their website, NormanHardie.com

Jan 14 2018

55mins

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Rank #2: How to Make Your Passion Your Profession While Traveling The World with Brian McClintic MS

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Brian McClintic (@brianmcclinticms) is a Master Sommelier and founder of the wine company and travel blog, Viticole Wine (@viticolewine). In this episode we get into a lot from why and how he first got into wine to how Viticole is becoming a lifestyle business for him that combines his passions of wine, travel, and writing.

Learn more about Brian at https://crupodcast.com/show/brianmcclintic

We invite you to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes here and leave us a review. Our goal is to grow a community of people who are passionate about wine so we can all learn more and connect with each other. If that appeals to you at all, then subscribe. It helps others find the show, which continues to expand this community you’re apart of.

Nov 21 2016

1hr 7mins

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Rank #3: How to Strategically Market and Develop A Wine Brand with Jeff Meisel

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Jeff Meisel is the Vice President of Brand Development for Long Meadow Ranch based in St. Helena, California. Jeff oversees all things marketing and development across Long Meadow Ranch, Farmstead Restaurant, Hunt & Harvest, and Stony Hill. We chat about Jeff’s story and career in the wine industry thus far, his learnings, and dig into how the Long Meadow Ranch umbrella brand works to engage with customers across marketing channels, platforms, and in real life, along with the specific strategies and tools that they implement do grow the brand across its many product offerings.

Learn more about Jeff and Long Meadow Ranch with the show notes at https://crupodcast.com/show

Jan 07 2020

1hr 6mins

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Rank #4: How to Let Wines Speak for Themselves with Katy Wilson

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As one of the 4% of female winemakers in California who are also owners of their own winery, Sonoma-based LaRue Wines winemaker and owner, Katy Wilson is also making waves within the 10% minority of California wineries whose lead winemaker also happens to be female. Because, not only does she manage every harvest decision, punch down and barrel regimen under her own label, she also the winemaker for Anaba Wines, Claypool Cellars, Reeve Wines and Smith Story Wine Cellars – all Sonoma-based wineries who have sought out Katy’s knack for letting the wines speak for themselves.

Learn more about Katy here.

With barely a dime to her name at age 26 when the idea of LaRue crossed-over from conversation to conception, Katy’s passion for winemaking has evolved into not only an in-demand wine label, but also an in-demand consulting business. Today, at only 35-years old, Katy is proving to herself and to young, up and coming women in wine that persistence and hard work really do go a long way.

While Katy will tell you her story is just beginning, she’s already journeyed a colorful path to get to where she is now, highlighted by stints at Joseph Phelps, Flowers and Kamen, just to name a few; not to mention a few international harvests in New Zealand and Australia.

Today, nearly a decade after launching, LaRue is an ultra-premium, 500-case brand featuring elegant and restrained single-vineyard Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from some of the top vineyard sites on the Sonoma Coast (Rice-Spivak Vineyard, Charles Heintz Vineyard, Emmaline Ann Vineyard, Thorn Ridge Vineyard and Coastlands Vineyard). 

Aug 06 2018

1hr 19mins

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Rank #5: How to Challenge the Norm of Wine Retail with Dustin Wilson MS

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Dustin Wilson (@dustinwilsonms) is a partner and owner the wine shop in Tribeca, New York City called Verve Wine. Dustin came on the podcast when the show first started and he was working at Eleven Madison Park, but in this episode he tells us about how he transitioned from being a somm on the floor of restaurants for so many years to starting and being on the floor of a retail store and what the challenges of starting a new wine shop in New York City has been like.

We then dig into the story behind Verve, why Dustin wanted to start something new, and how Verve is challenging the norm of wine retail by integrating an amazing website that helps people find and learn about wine in an easier, more natural way and utilizing social media to do the same with things like visual tasting notes.

Full show notes & and transcript of the interview at https://crupodcast.com/show/dustinwilson37

Dustin then shares with us one of his favorite wines he’s been excited about lately called 4 Monos, a Garnacha made just outside of Madrid, and you can get it at Verve for only $20. To top it all off, Dustin and the team at Verve are giving you as a Cru Podcast listener, 10% off all discountable wines when you check out with the code CRUPOD10. It only applies to those of you who can receive shipments in the USA. So, go get some wine from some great people who want to share more wine with the world.

But before we get into the show, many of you know that I had the opportunity of traveling to Madrid a couple weeks ago and meet a great winemaker by the name of Fabio Bartolomei (his podcast episode here), and experience the only natural wine shop in Madrid, called Wine Attack.

So, I knew that I was going to be buying a ton of wine, and my last experience with bringing a case of wine back in my regular suitcase was not only sketchy caused it looked like I was smuggling wine bottles out of Germany all wrapped up in t-shirts, but I didn’t know if all of my bottles were going to break. You know how TSA can be with our bags. So, I had to find a solution to my wine bottle traveling debacle. I found this company called Lazenne.

Essentially, they make suitcases for your wine bottles. It was perfect! I got one and they even offered to ship it to my hotel in Madrid so that when I got there, all I had to do was fill it with a case of amazing wines. I didn’t have to worry about making sure that I got it in time to fly out and then check a bag going out. I just gave them my address and it was sitting on my bed when I walked into my hotel room. It only cost me €35 to check the bag on the way back and it got to my destination in perfect condition!

Guys, I’m telling you. If you ever travel with more than a couple wine bottles on the plan, or even just driving long distances, you need to get one of Lazenne’s bags. Go to Lazenne.com and check out which bag is best for you. I got the 12-Bottle Wine Check Luggage, but maybe something a bit sturdier would be best for you, like the Vingardevalise Hardshell Wine Suitcase. Either way, take a look and protect your wine with a Lazenne bag.

Apr 17 2017

1hr 2mins

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Rank #6: How to be Successful in the Wine World with André Hueston Mack

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André Hueston Mack (@youknowmouton) is a Sommelier-at-Large, maker of Mouton Noir Wines, designer behind Get Fraiche Cru, and author of Small Thyme Cooks: coloring & activity book.

The over arching theme in this episode is how to be successful in the wine world. For André, it comes down to two things; showing up and working hard.

André has an amazing story of growing up as an Army brat, moving from place to place every few years to being inspired by the show Frazer to start exploring wine. Yes, the pompousness of Frazer and Niles describing wine lit a curiosity about wine in André’s mind He tells us the stories behind working in restaurants since he was sixteen to being hired on at The French Laundry and helping to open Per Se in New York while being a minority in the high-end NYC restaurant scene.

Learn more about André here and buy his wines here.

Dec 19 2016

1hr 41mins

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Rank #7: How to Achieve Quality & Consistency Over Time with Dan Petroski

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After a decade long career in advertising for Time Warner, Dan Petroski got a harvest internship in Italy, booked a flight and didn’t look back. For the next year, he would live as a local in his adopted home of Italy, working in vineyards. From that point onward, Dan knew that wine would take the center focus of not only his career, but his life.

Learn more about Dan here.

Coming to California with just over a year’s experience, Dan had a challenging time getting a job, until Andy Smith gave him an opportunity. Fast forward to today and Dan has had incredible success including being named “Winemaker of the Year” in 2017 by the SF Chronicle.

In this episode, Dan and I dig into his journey thus far in wine, we philosophize on the topics of loyalty and freedom as a winemaker, and then explore the terroir of Larkmead’s vineyards and the concept behind his white wine only label, Massican.

Aug 27 2018

1hr 7mins

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Rank #8: How To Build An Authentic Personal Brand with Amanda McCrossin

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Having previously worked as a sommelier in New York City, Amanda moved to the west coast in July 2015 where she joined the wine team at PRESS restaurant in St. Helena.  Known as the "sommvivant" to her Instagram followers and YouTube subscribers for being a "Sommelier" with a "Bon Vivant" lifestyle, Amanda documents her life as a somm in the Napa Valley on a daily basis.  By showcasing events like excursions around northern California in her splashy red Mini Cooper convertible, tastings at Napa Valley wineries, rare bottles of vintage Napa Cab at PRESS and daily adventures around the Valley, Amanda has become "an advocate for indulgence and the wine lifestyle."

In this episode Amanda and I dig into her story of being a sommelier, how to hone one’s voice and story telling ability, strategies for being a successful sommelier, and define how to be authentic to one’s self when it comes to building a personal brand with a purpose.

In this episode we mention… PRESS Restaurant Napa Amanda’s YouTube Channel Amanada’s Instagram Profile Dan Petroski Interview Massican Winery Follow Amanda on YOUTUBE TWITTER INSTAGRAM WEBSITE

 

LISTEN ON

Feb 07 2019

1hr 5mins

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Rank #9: If It Tastes Perfect, You’ve Missed It with Bob Cabral & Ryan Prichard

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Under the guidance of philosophies like, “Great winemaking is doing the right thing when no one is looking,” and “if it tastes perfect, you’ve missed it,” Bob, Ryan, and the Three Sticks team are crafting elegant wines with a focus on Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. They source fruit from some of the top vineyards in Sonoma County including Gaps Crown, Durell, Walala, One Sky, and various other Price Family Estates.

Subsribe at CruPodcast.com

In this episode, Bob, Ryan, and I sat down to taste through a large portion of the Three Sticks lineup. We delve into the details of each wine, the soils, farming, ecology, everything. Mixed in between we chat about Bob & Ryan’s histories in the wine industry, life & work philosophies, and the practical & technical sides of winemaking in Sonoma County.

In this episode we mention… Three Sticks The Adobe Tonnellerie Ô Rudolf Steiner, Biodynamics Bronco Wine Company Lutum Wines Russian River Brewery Barndiva Domaine Marcel Deiss

Wines we tasted… 2017 Russian River Pinot Noir 2017 Price Family Estates Pinot Noir 2016 Cuvée Eva Marie Pinot Noir 2016 Walala Pinot Noir 2017 Origin Durell Vineyard Chardonnay 2017 Gaps Crown Chardonnay 2016 One Sky Chardonnay Sonoma Mountain 2016 Alana Vineyard Chardonnay 2016 Durell Vineyard Chardonnay 2016 Durell Vineyard Pinot Blanc 2017 Casteñada White 2017 Casteñda Rosé

Follow Three Sticks on FACEBOOK INSTAGRAM WEBSITE

Jan 29 2019

2hr 2mins

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Rank #10: The Relentless Pursuit of Excellence in Farming and Winemaking with Steve Matthiasson

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Steve dreamt of farming his entire life. He became an obsessed gardener and cook while studying philosophy in college. In 1994, while back in grad school for horticulture after three years as a bike messenger/wannabe farmer, he found a job in vineyards and orchards working for a small sustainable agriculture consulting firm. In 1999 he co-authored the California manual on sustainable vineyard practices. In 2002 he started consulting on vineyard practices in Napa. He still loves the challenge of solving vineyard problems for others, but since 2003 the primary focus has been on his own family farming and winemaking with his wife Jill. Steve is a life-long student of the craft of viticulture.

Eric Asimov has said of Steve’s wines, “Matthiasson wines bear an agricultural stamp, as fresh, lively and alive as the best produce from a farmers’ market.” Steve is a James Beard Award Finalist in 2018 & 2019, and has been named Winemaker of the Year by both the San Francisco Chronicle and Food & Wine Magazine.

Learn more about Steve with the show notes here.

In this episode we mention…

Native Seeds Search Organization Gary Nabhan, author on native foods Anson Mills, heritage rices Chef Frank Stitt of Highlands Bar Chef Rodney Scott, James Beard Award Brownen Percival & Steve Matthiasson Sustainability Talks in London on Wine & Cheese Premier Viticulture, Steves Vineyard Company Tenets of Integrated Pest Management • Monitoring • Establishing an Economic Threshold • Cultural Controls 2012 Limerick Lane Pinot Noir 14 Inkas Vodka High Wire Distillery in Charleston, South Carolina Follow Steve On… INSTAGRAMFACEBOOKWEBSITE

Feb 23 2020

1hr 19mins

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Rank #11: The Wine Trip That Lasts A Lifetime with Michael Evans

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Michael Evans is the co-founder of The Vines of Mendoza, a winery in the Uco Valley of Argentina that crafts nearly 300 custom wines each year with 130 private vineyard owners.

Fifteen years ago Michael came to Argentina from Los Angeles for what he thought would be a three-week vacation. Michael fell in love with the people and the place that is Mendoza and decided to embark on this adventure of creating Argentina’s greatest wines.

After a chance introduction to Pablo Gimenez Riili during that visit to Mendoza, Michael and Pablo began an endeavor together to provide the highest quality wine experience to Mendoza travelers and help those who love wine to make their own. The result was The Vines of Mendoza. With Pablo, Michael raised money from friends and family and purchased 650 acres of land in the Uco Valley, and created The Vines of Mendoza’s one-of-a-kind Private Vineyards. They've since sold vines to more than 185 owners from around the globe, and the property has expanded to 1,500 acres.

Prior to The Vines, Evans worked on every Presidential campaign between Clinton and Kerry, and served as Executive Director of CTIA Foundation, the International association for the wireless telecommunications industry Michael is an avid photographer and traveler who enjoys helping vineyard owners document their journeys and sharing stories tales of the best spot to visit next.

Jul 16 2018

59mins

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Rank #12: How to Support a Community from Around the Table with Jennifer Reichardt

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Jennifer Reichardt is the founder and winemaker of Raft Wines, a small production wine label based in Santa Rosa, California with a heavy focus on Rhone Varietals.

Learn more about Jen with the show notes here.

You may wonder where the name Raft comes from, as you’ll find out in the episode, Jen’s background is based in the duck business and a raft is a dense flock of swimming birds.

In this episode, we dig into Jen’s story, how she got into wine when being raised in a household that was all about ducks, why and how she makes the types of wines she does, and the exciting and rewarding work that she is doing with Rebuild Wine Country, and a new project with the help of Liberty Duck and Tonnellerie Radoux, to help those who have been horrendously affected by the recent wildfires.

We also dig into all of the fundraising and work that she and Rebuild Wine Country are doing to help those in Northern California that were so devastatingly affected by these fires.

If you feel so inclined to donate and/or volunteer with Rebuild Wine Country, you can go to RebuildWineCountry.org

Jan 08 2018

43mins

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Rank #13: Bringing Small Production Wine to the Market with William Whelan

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William Whelan is the Vice President of Wine for Winestyr, an online and physical retail space operating on a direct-to-consumer and wine club model.

Winestyr gives you unprecedented access to a curated collection of wines from the over 7,000 wineries in the United States. Most of these producers are actually too small to warrant the attention of retailers so they are genuinely hard to find. Until now. They’ve combed the country for the best producers, met with hundreds of winemakers, and tasted thousands of wines. Producers that they work with include Matthiasson, Drake Whitcraft, Katie Wilson, Blair Guthrie, Sandhi, Halcyon, Martha Stoumen, and Julien Fayard.

As the Vice President of Wine, Will is responsible for the continual growth of the Winestyr portfolio of incredible producers from around the country, educating staff weekly on wine, and curating the educational materials for each wine that go out Winestyr members.

Learn more about Will and WInestyr with the show notes here.

Feb 17 2020

1hr 17mins

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Rank #14: Dissecting Winemaking Decisions with Todd Graff

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Frank Family's current success would not exist without his leadership. Todd joined in 2003 and has provided consistency of winemaking, vineyard sources, and leadership in Frank Family’s estate vineyard acquisitions, which are not more than 250 acres in Rutherford, Capell and Carneros. He also has culled relationships with several great growers—Beckstoffer, Sangiacomo, etc. I think Todd has defied the old adage “jack of all trades and master of none.” Todd makes everything from Cabernet/Chardonnay to Pinot, Sangiovese, Zinfandel, Zinfandel Port, Late Harvest Chardonnay and 4 different sparkling wines, and he does all of these quite well. Frank Family is the only winery to have twice received “Winery of the Year” from the Connoisseur’s Guide to CA Wine—in 2012 and 2017

Learn more about Todd here.

Sep 24 2018

1hr 9mins

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Rank #15: Philosophies on Winemaking and Scaling a Wine Business with Josh Phelps

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Josh Phelps is the founder and winemaker of Grounded Wine Co. making delicious, all-American, and approachable wines across the west coast while based in St. Helena, California.

Josh’s roots run deep in Napa, raised in a winemaking family, he was exposed to the industry from a young age, starting his very first endeavor in the wine world, “Napa Valet”, at age 15. He continued to build his knowledge of the business through college, selling wine, working the harvest and creating wine for friends with his father, Chris Phelps (of Dominus Estate). As a Napa local, his philosophies on winemaking and business are advised from luminaries of the wine world he calls his mentors and friends like Joel Gott, Kimberly Jones and Leslie Rudd, and of course, his own father. With Grounded Wine Co., Josh hopes to build on this legacy and make his own splash in the wine world while exposing wine drinkers of his own generation to his hometown in wine country.

As a part of his incredible résumé, Josh has been named to Forbes’s 30 under 30 list, Zagat’s 30 under 30 and Wine Enthusiast’s 40 under 40 – though one of his proudest accomplishments is still the Eagle Scout badge he earned at the age of 18.

Grounded Wine Co. is being built to reflect his experience growing up in wine country, and his relationships in the wine community. A grassroots, all-American, wine label, the wines feature grapes from trusted, sustainable vineyards in California and Washington and showcase what it means to be a winemaker today. Working with trusted farmers and childhood friends, his company respects his deep understanding of wine, one that can only be developed growing up around the vines.

In this episode we mention…

Chris Phelps, Josh’s father Dominus Estate Caymus Winery Taken Wine Co. Chambers & Chambers Distributors Trinchero Family Estates Grounded Wine Co. Ad Vivum Cellars, Chris’ wine label Landform Pinot Noir Willamette Valley, newest label from Grounded Work by Gospel, Josh’s design team Terry Wheatly, Vintage Wine Estates the late Leslie Rudd Authentique Wine Cellars, Oregon Dan Petroski (interview 1) / (interview 2) Space Age Rosé of Grenache, Grounded La Gravette de Certan Massican Champagne Vilmart Champagne Pierre Peters Champagne Doyard Follow Grounded Wine Co. On… INSTAGRAMFACEBOOK WEBSITE

Jan 18 2020

54mins

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Rank #16: Wine Tales of a Young Master Sommelier with Jack Mason MS

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Jack Mason (@jamasoniii) is one of the youngest Master Sommelier, and is the MS & Wine Director at Pappas Bros. Steakhouse in Houston, Texas.

Learn more about Jack with the show notes here.

Jack achieved MS status at the very young age of 27 and he’s one of the youngest to do so. He is one of only 9 esteemed Master Sommeliers currently in the state of Texas and one of 144 Master Sommeliers in the U.S.

He’s been featured in Forbes’ annual 30 Under 30 list of outstanding young professionals nationwide, Zagat’s 30 Under 30 list in New York City as was named Wine & Spirits Best New Sommelier 2015. He was also featured in the series Uncorked on the Esquire Network that followed his journey to receiving his MS certification.

With all of that, I have to say that Jack is one of the most fun and humble people I’ve ever met.

Before we get into the show, I want to invite you to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and leave us a review. You can do so on iTunes itself, or with the podcast player on your phone. Doing so helps more and more people find the show, which helps to grow this community of people passionate about wine.

Mar 05 2017

46mins

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Rank #17: How to Craft a Wine with Michael Cruse

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Michael Cruse (@crusewine) is the winemaker and owner of Ultramarine Wines and Cruse Wine Co. based in Petaluma, California.

Learn more about Michael with the show notes here.

In this episode, Michael and I dig into his background and how he got into the wine world, the terroir of California and how Michael is working to share that through his wines, and where his love of sparkling wines come from.

Before we get into the show, I want to invite you to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and leave us a review. You can do so on iTunes itself, or with the podcast player on your phone. By subscribing and reviewing the show, you’re helping others discover the show and working to grow this community of people who are also passionate about wine.

And if you’re interested, subscribe to our weekly email newsletter, Cru Mail. We send you one email every Monday with the latest podcast episode, so you’ll be the first to hear it, and we send another email on Friday with anything from other podcasts we’re enjoying, wine videos, articles, books, events, and even offers from great wine companies that give you a discount when buying their wines online and in their shops.

You can subscribe to Cru Mail here.

Mar 13 2017

1hr 1min

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Rank #18: Finding Belonging in the Mountains and Vines with Bertus and Ali van Zyl

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Bertus and Alli are the owners and winemakers of Belong Wine Co. based in Napa Valley making Rhône and fringe varietals from the El Dorado Foothills.

With 1 ton of fruit and a whole lot of gumption, started Belong Wine Co. in 2017 to celebrate everything they hold dear: love, adventure, and a sense of exploration. They grew up on opposite ends of the globe - Bertus in Cape Town, South Africa and Alli in the Bay Area sugar hamlet of Crockett.

Bertus knew he wanted to be a winemaker at the age of 15. He went on to study Viticulture and Enology at the University of Stellenbosch. He has worked in the cellar at Deetlefs Estate, Rupert & Rothschild Vignerons, Glen Carlou, Hess Collection, Chappellet, and Regusci and has been in his current position as the winemaker for James Cole, Tank Garage, and T-Vine wineries since 2012. His happy place has always been out in the vineyards, where he can be found in short shorts.

Alli still doesn’t know what she wants to be when she grows up. She has always found great joy in the creative process and is a Jill of many trades. She went to the Harvard of the west, Chico State, where she studied Sociology and learned the beauty of work/life balance. Alli moved to Napa in 2010 with her sister, Holly, who was already working in the wine industry. After managing a wine bar downtown for four years she transitioned to her current role at Whetstone Wine Cellars where she gets to wear many hats, including graphic design, hospitality, events, and marketing.

Feb 02 2020

1hr 17mins

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Rank #19: Growing An Unlikely Vineyard and Winery with Deirdre Heekin

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Deirdre Heekin is the co-founder, winegrower, organizer, writer, photographer, flower farmer, and designer behind La Garagista Farm + Winery in Barnard, Vermont. In this episode we get into a lot from where the idea came from to start growing and making wine in Vermont to its challenges as she successful makes amazing natural wines in this environment. We also talk about her love of travel, the biodynamic practices that have been instilled in her, and her new book, An Unlikely Vineyard.

We invite you to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes here and leave us a review. Our goal is to grow a community of people who are passionate about wine so we can all learn more and connect with each other. If that appeals to you at all, then subscribe. It helps others find the show, which continues to expand this community you’re apart of.

Learn more about Deirdre at CruPodcast.com

Nov 28 2016

1hr 6mins

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Rank #20: An Exploration of the Loire in California with Kim & Tyler Elwell

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Santa Barbara-bred Tyler and Napa Valley-native Kim launched Halcyon Wines in 2013 after Tyler discovered an intriguing Cabernet Franc vineyard along the Central Coast—a varietal he always dreamed of working with. In his 15 years of winemaking experience, Tyler has produced some of the most critically acclaimed wine as Assistant Winemaker at world-renowned Tablas Creek Vineyard and Provenance in Napa Valley. Tyler recently graduated with an Executive MBA in Wine Business through Sonoma State and is helping to develop new brands and reinvigorate legacy brands. Kim Elwell is a PR and marketing expert with nearly a decade of experience serving celebrity, hospitality, and food/wine clients throughout the Bay Area and beyond—most notably managing Bob Weir's (Grateful Dead) recording studio, TRI Studios in Marin, California. Kim works full-time as Account Director for The James Collective, a boutique PR and marketing agency based in wine country and New York City. Together the Elwells combine their deep-rooted love of wine and California, bringing you a nouveau take on California Cabernet Franc.

In this episode we mention… Halcyon Wines Tyler graduating with his Executive MBA in Wine Business from Sonoma State University Nom de Guerre, Tyler’s new label Boojee, Kim’s new label Follow Halcyon on… INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK SPOTIFY WEBSITE

In 2012, Sonoma State University launched the first Executive MBA Programs in Wine Business in the United States. This program was developed in response to the needs of wine industry leaders, and remains North America's only program that combines globally recognized excellence in business education with a highly focused wine industry focus. The program is accredited by AACSB, an achievement that fewer than 10% of eligible business programs are able to earn. So far the program has produced nearly 200 alumni who are going on to provide the next generation of wine industry leaders and entrepreneurs. Students have access to an unparalleled network of wine industry scholars, practitioners, and classmates from day one of the program. Courses are held in the Wine Spectator Learning Center, an innovative learning space gilded with advanced technology and flexible learning classrooms. Applications for the 2020 Sonoma Executive MBA in Wine Business cohort are being accepted now through February 28th. Visit SBE.Sonoma.edu/MBA for more information, to speak with an admissions counselor, or to RSVP for an information session. SBE.Sonoma.edu/MBA or call 664-3501.

Sep 24 2019

1hr 23mins

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How to Visually Tell Your Story with Heather Daenitz

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Heather Daenitz is the founder and photographer of Craft & Cluster, a photography and social media consulting company focusing on brands in the wine and beer industries!

It was while working for a vineyard management company in Santa Barbara County that Heather rediscovered her love of photography and found a previously unknown interest in social media management. She was asked to start an Instagram account to showcase the practices of the company and decided that if she was going to do this social media thing, she was going to do it right; opting to only post high quality, original images that told a story.

After almost two years of photographing, upgrading her camera equipment, and learning everything she could about social media management for the company she worked for, she decided it was time to create her own business. She wanted to help wineries and breweries create beautiful imagery that would tell the stories behind their brands. Thus, Craft & Cluster was born!

In this episode we dig into the years of learnings, practices, experimenting, and trial and error that Heather has gone through to now being a sough after wine industry photographer. There are only a handful of incredible photographers in the California wine industry that I consider to be top notch, and Heather is one of them. She’s going to give us some very useful strategies and tactics when it comes to visually telling our stories in an authentic manner, how to take your own gorgeous photos when you can’t hire pros like her, and some fantastic resources to use as a constant reference. We previously recorded this chat via Instagram Live, so there are a few times were we take audience questions from Instagram and the interview lends itself to being more of a natural conversation. Some resources • StoryBrandLater AppPlan That

Find Heather On... Website Instagram

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May 04 2020

1hr 1min

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Chatting All Things Chillable Red Wines with Kathryn and Tug Coker

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As you know, I generally interview amazing wine folks to learn about their stories and coax out a bit of knowledge and advice. Today’s podcast is a little bit of a different format however. Here’s what’s up. The other day I reached out to an incredible power couple of the wine world, Kathryn and Tug Coker who together are married with two tiny humans running around the house, operate all things Esters Wine Shop & Bar in Santa Monica, and have recently launched a new wine podcast called The Long Finish where they take time to unwind, recap the week, what’s inspiring them in this time, and of course pop a bottle to enjoy and discuss. So we hoped on an ever so handy Zoom call and spent a while hanging out to record a collaborative podcast episode chatting about chillable red wines and life to co-publish it on both of our podcasts. Fun, right?

The question that led to The Long Finish starting is, “What are we drinking tonight?” So, what did we drink? 2019 Las Jaras Glou Glou from Mendocino. A super gulpable, hence the name, refreshing chill able red wine blend of mainly Carignan and Zinfandel that I very quickly consumed the entire bottle of. You should definitely snag a few bottles of this guy either from Esters, the winery itself, or your local wine shop. I grabbed mine from Miracle Plum, a cute little boutique market & goods shop here in Sonoma County. 

Towards the end our chat we’re talking about work and inspiration an I mention a new project I’m launching called SommTable. It’s a new kind of online wine shop where you can shop my entire wine list from Barndiva made up of a lot of very well priced Burgundy & Champagne, join our wine club that’s not really a club more just fun way to discover delicious wines for $75 per month for three killer bottles of vino, and my favorite part, a daily wine deal texted to you. Simply, you text me to signup, I text you a wine at an insane value everyday. The prices on these wines are well below any other retail prices that I see and they all have a sustainable focus. It doesn’t cost anything until you actually buy wine too. To jump on that list text SOMMTABLE to 31996. You should also go follow my new instagram handle for the shop @sommtablehealdsburg

Follow The Long Finish On… SUBSCRIBE TO THEIR PODCAST INSTAGRAMFACEBOOKWEBSITE

Apr 27 2020

1hr 34mins

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Sculpting a Truly Coastal Wine with Rachel Martin & Marbue Mark

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A Virginia native, Martin was present at the inception of what is now considered one of that state’s premier wine producers, Boxwood Estate Winery, in 2005. As Executive Vice President of Winery Operations, Martin’s job was to oversee all facets of production, sales and marketing of Boxwood’s award-winning whites, rosés and Bordeaux-style red blends.

Martin’s forward thinking led directly to Middleburg having its own wine identity separate from the more generic Virginia designation, making her well suited to again start from scratch with Oceano Wines. Jancis Robinson noted Martin’s marketing savvy in her book “American Wine.”

Marbue Marke earned his enology degree from Davis and, subsequently, added to his academic resume with an MBA from Sonoma State University. His practical experience began at J Winery in Sonoma, followed by a series of moves, each adding another piece to the puzzle that is winemaking. At Cosentino Winery, he learned about the rarefied world of high-end Napa wines. He was then a barrel enologist at R.H. Philips. For two years, Marke was charged with cooperage studies, an offshoot field that many winemakers are not experienced in. During a stint at Benziger, he was immersed in that family’s heightened concern for soil and winemaking purity.

From there, Marke made a seemingly counterintuitive jump to Gallo. He reasoned that it’s always a good idea to revisit the basics of one’s craft, and given Gallo’s depth and breadth of resources, it was the perfect place for him to hone all of the skills associated with the production process.

But perhaps the most pivotal move he made, at least in terms of his future connection to Oceano, was his decision to sign on as John Caldwell’s winemaker. That Marke began working with Caldwell turned out to be prophetic for Rachel  . She met Marke by way of her very own connection to Caldwell. She sourced the plant material for Boxwood Estate Winery’s first vineyard block from him. Marke has since taken over as the Director of Winegrowing at Italics Winegrowers in Coombsville, one of Napa Valley’s cooler climes and another serendipitous similarity with Spanish Springs Vineyard.

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Apr 20 2020

1hr 17mins

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Re-imagining the Path from Grapes to Glass with Brian Smith

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Winc is a unique winery in that they make over 100 individual SKUs of wine from around the country at a range of price points. On top of that, their direct-to-consumer first model and mass utilization of Digital marketing mixed with a heavy dose of customer feedback has enabled them to continue to craft wines that their audience is looking for. With a 684% increase in new member sign ups between March 15 2020 and March 28 2020 and an 80% increase in revenue in March over February, the company is seeing some incredible growth.

Previous to founding and growing Winc with his partners, Brian founded successful finance and fashion startups. Additionally, he created the wine program for the tech-enabled Clo Wine in New York and founded the millennial cult brand Jolie Folle rosé.

SEE THE SHOW NOTES HERE: https://crupodcast.com/show/reimagining-the-path-from-grapes-to-glass-with-brian-smith GET 10% OFF FROM EPISODE SPONSOR, BRICK & MORTAR AND DELTA WINES WHEN YOU SHOP NOW! ENTRE CODE CRU AT CHECKOUT. LEAVE A REVIEW ON APPLE PODCASTS

Apr 14 2020

1hr 1min

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Carey Vanderborg Interviews Cru Host, Chappy Cottrell

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This is a bonus episode of sorts. Recently I sat down with Carey Vanderborg @careydrewsomm on Instagram Live to turn the tables and interview me, Chappy! For those who don't know Carey he is a sommelier at Press Restaurant in St. Helena, California. In this down time he's started interviewing some of the top talent in Napa Valley Kellie White, Chris Phelps, Carlton McCoy, and many more. He's going live at 5pm each week day on Instagram. 

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Apr 09 2020

56mins

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Exploring the Crossroads of Farming & Winemaking with Natalie Bath

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A native Californian, growing up in St. Helena, Natalie came back to the Napa Valley after graduating college and fell back in love with the beauty of the Napa Valley. Growing up with a Master Sommelier father, she knew if she wanted to change career paths to the wine industry she would need to do something different.

Natalie did a harvest at Etude in 2010, embracing the long hours, manual labor, and comradery that comes with cleaning. She was hooked! Natalie spent the first part of the 2011 vintage in the Southern Hemisphere at Villa Maria in New Zealand and the second part of 2011 at Littorai in Sebastopol, getting her first experience with biodynamics working under Ted Lemon. Not knowing where to go next, a conversation with her longtime friend, Samantha Rudd, turned into an opportunity to work harvest at Rudd Oakville Estate in 2012.

“It was like finally coming home”, Natalie says. “I grew up playing in the vineyards and running around the property as a kid. Something just felt right.” When harvest finished, Natalie began hosting guests who were visiting the Estate, hoping to continue working at Rudd in any area she could. In 2014, Natalie joined the Winemaking team fulltime as a cellar hand and became the oenologist in 2016. An opportunity of a lifetime presented itself, allowing Natalie to travel overseas to work harvest at Château Pétrus in 2016. Coming back from her travels refreshed and rejuvenated, Natalie became the Assistant Winemaker in 2017 at Rudd Estate, and the following year the lead Winemaker for Crossroads.

If you haven't already listened to the round table discussion on the Wine Business x COVID_19, listen to it here!

READ THE SHOW NOTES https://crupodcast.com/show/exploring-the-crossroads-of-farming-winemaking-with-natalie-bath

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Apr 06 2020

1hr 4mins

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Making Contemporary Wines of Israel with Guy Eshel

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Born in Tel Aviv, Guy grew up between California and Israel, building a strong bond with both lands. After a harvest internship in Napa Valley, Guy decided to pursue winemaking professionally, and he graduated from the UC Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology in 2013. He has worked at Cliff Lede Vineyards and Whetstone Wine Cellars in Napa Valley, Domaine Francois Villard in the Northern Rhone, and Clonakilla winery in Canberra, Australia. Most recently, before moving back to Israel to join Dalton Winery as head winemaker in 2015, Guy worked at Broc Cellars in Berkeley, one of California’s preeminent urban wineries.

GET THE SHOW NOTES: https://crupodcast.com/show/making-contemporary-wines-of-israel-with-guy-eshel

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CRU COLLECTIVE WINES: 2019 Delta California Chenin Blanc There are only a handful of producers in California making stunning Chenin blanc and Delta is one of them. This wine full of characters classic to Chenin like lemon verbena, jasmine, Bartlett pear, apricot, blood orange, and my favorite tasting note that for me is the sign of a quality Chenin blanc, fresh persimmon. An odd one, I know! Super tasty! This Chenin is sourced from some chilly-willy vineyards way out on the Cali coast and fermented partially in stainless steel tanks and partially in neutral wood barrels which allows for a micro oxygenation during fermentation to develop more texture and provide a bit more lees contact. It’s also 12.5% alcohol so if you’re trying to stay a bit healthier, this is a solid wine for you.

So Delta is the new project from Alexis and Matt Iaconis, who just happen to be friends and neighbors of mine. Matt & Alexis first met while both working at the three-Michelin starred The Restaurant at Meadowood in Napa and now have a beautiful family, own and make wine for there primary label brick & mortar, and now have Delta. What I love about the Delta wines is that they are California appellation, but that in no way means that they are of a lower-quality than the higher-end brick & mortar. Production is still small and their commitment to sustainability is even more so in focus while $1 of every bottle sold is donated to their non-profit partners like the The Surfrider Foundation and Cool Effect to help fight for environmental change, something that is near and dear to my heart having studied sustainable development in college. What’s even better though is that this Delta Chenin is $15 a bottle, a steal of a value! But, as a listener of Cru and because I love this wine so much, you get it for $13.50 a bottle when you shop on the Delta Wines website, winesforchange.com. Just enter the promo code CRU at checkout and Matt & Alexis will give ya that 10% off. Also, if you are yearning to explore the brick & mortar wines, which the 2015 Sweet Water Springs Vineyard Blanc de Blancs from the Russian River which drinks like blanc de blancs from my favorite village in Champagne called Vertus, you can snag 10% off all of the brick & mortar wines at brickandmortarwines.com too! I’m stoked, I hope you are! And I hope that you’ll enjoy this Chenin cause it is yummy!

Mar 30 2020

1hr 14mins

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Wine Business x COVID_19: A Roundtable Discussion

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A few days ago I had the idea to get a handful of amazing wine professionals together to discuss what’s actually going on in the wine industry right now during this COVID_19 quarantine time. I wanted to get a pulse on how everyone is feeling, what sales are looking like in various markets, how this immediate transition to everyone pushing sales online is both working and not working out for folks. I wanted to understand what people are doing to authentically connect with their audiences while offering support and where these professionals think the industry and market as a whole will be when we come out of this thing. I sat down with 9 incredible professionals from Sonoma and Napa Counties to enjoy a quarantini, but more importantly to have a real conversation of the trials and tribulations we’re going through. These amazing folks provide a lot of insight and new perspective along with actionable tactics, strategies, tools to apply to any kind of wine business you’re running or working in. We also discuss the programs that have been setup to help those who have now been rendered unemployed, are homeless, or have shut their businesses all together.

PANEL INCLUDES

Blair Guthrie, owner/winemaker of Guthrie Family Wines and Stewart Cellars in Sonoma and Napa

Amanda McCrossin, former wine director of Press restaurant in St. Helena and long-time YouTuber, Instagramer, and marketer

Dan Petroski, owner/winemaker of Massican and winemaker at Larkmead Vineyards in Calistoga

Josh Phelps, owner/winemaker of Grounded Wine Co. in St. Helena

Sara Morgenstern, former Sonoma County beverage director and director of operations for multiple small brands such as Ruth Lewandowski Wines

Michelle Lipa, owner of Trig Collective a marketing and branding agency based in Napa

Chelsea Boss, a marketing and management consultant based in Napa

Woody Hambrecht, co-founder & co-CEO of Haus, a venture backed low-alcohol aperitif

All of the questions that we discussed will be in the show notes along with the links to all of the recourses we mention throughout our chat.

RESOURCES

Ship Ohi: Ohi enables same-day delivery for e-commerce brands by building the ‘Amazon Prime Now’ experience with next-generation technology.

Kevin Kelly's One Thousand True Fans: If you could get 1000 True Fans to support you by buying $100 worth of what you create every year, you would earn an income of $100,000 a year. That sounds a bit like a get-rich-quick scheme. 1000 True Fans is not that. It's a get-a-good-income-slowly income model. It requires hard work, but once you’ve built up 1000 True Fans, you are free forever to live as an independent creator earning good money making what you love.

A Theatre Guide to Technology (or How I Learned to Live with Corona): Dear wonderful humans, artists, entrepreneurs and educators, you are heroes. Fuck this shit. Let’s make things, shall we? Deep breaths, follow the bullet points, and when you feel confident enough… Get creative. It’s what we do best. Right? You got this.

Compline Wine Bar: Buy our health care workers and first responders a meal!

The Independent Restaurant Coalition: formed to the save local restaurants affected by COVID-19. IRC is founded on the simple belief that there is power to affect legislative change if we unite our voice. This national movement is quickly growing and EVERYONE is welcome to join. Together, as small businesses across this country, we represent up to 4% of the nation's GDP.

Dining Bonds Initiative: Due to the impact that the coronavirus COVID-19 has had on the restaurant community, a collective of restaurant industry professionals have set a global initiative in motion to get funds into the hands of restaurants NOW, even if they are temporarily closed. A Dining Bond works like a savings bond, where you can purchase a "bond" at a value rate to be redeemed for face value at a future date.

ROAR (Relief Opportunities for All Restaurants): ROAR stands united to act immediately. We know that decisions are being made right now. These decisions will shape the future in ways both known and unknowable. We must act swiftly to give our community the best possible chance for a positive outcome. Here’s is our 8 point plan to be in a position to reopen, rehire, and eventually help our community:

QUESTIONS

-At the end of the first week of shelter-in-place here in Northern California, Carlo what is the general feeling from the consensus of people in your peer groups? How about for you Sara?

-Michelle and Chelsea, on the communication front how are you and clients communicating with client’s current customer base offering them reassurance and how are you asking for support? What’s the language you’re using?

-As we all know, tasting rooms are closed which make up roughly 28% of sales for many companies and in-person tastings are obviously no longer occurring as with restaurants, which make up roughly 20% of sales for businesses, have essentially halted. In an effort to pivot and keep driving sales and cash flow, Blair, what are you all implementing in your businesses and seeing other companies doing?

-Josh, how are retail sales currently factoring into your sales mix and are those sales holding on?

-Dan and Josh, at the higher-end price point of the market, are we seeing a shift in sales of bottle prices say over $50?

-Many people are bottling this week and last week which means that many people will be sending out their spring releases soon. Woody, Haus launched a brand new product last week. First, what was the response like from your customers and secondly, is there anything that you learned in launching during this time that has differed from previous launches? Is there anything that brands should be aware of when sending out new releases and launching new SKUs over the next six months or so?

-Amanda, currently the cost of paid advertising has gone down. Facebook Ads for example are very affordable currently for the . How are we seeing more companies utilizing these cheaper resources right now for both paid and organic marketing?

-How does a brand balance retaining a level of exclusivity while still getting it's name out there in a bigger way through virtual tastings, etc?

-If we look at China and their timeframe of the economy coming back online, we’re looking at a 4-5 month runway. With those projections we’d be looking at June 1st coming back up for air. Michelle, how are you in your businesses planning for the next 4-5 months and what are some of your predictions of what the market could look like come June 1st?

-What are some benefit and/or aid programs that are starting that people who have been laid off can take advantage of?

Mar 25 2020

1hr 6mins

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How to Create Context in Storytelling and Wine with Matt Morris

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When you discuss wine, context is everything. Whether the topic of conversation is a specific region, grape varietal, producer, the context in which that topic is discussed leads the participants and audience to understand what the story and purpose is. In order to tell a story, how do you create that context?

Insert Matt Morris. For over a decade Matt has been working with some of the top wine and food producers and brands in northern California such as Abreu, Bond, Cornell, Heitz Cellars, Herb Lamb, Lorenza, Realm Cellars, The Restaurant at Meadowood, Charter Oak, Press Restaurant, Quince, Noma in Copenhagen, Goop, Skywalker Sound, and many many more. His work has focused on telling stories visually in a not-so-obvious manner by providing audiences the context of a deeper meaning. In recent years, Matt made the leap into winemaking originally with winemaker Benoit from Realm Cellars and now Francoise Peschon of Arujo, Vine Hill Ranch, and Cornell. Matt & Francoise are focusing on the revival of Charbono, a grape originally from north western Italy, but now only 70 acres remain and they all happen to be planted in Napa Valley.

GET THE SHOW NOTES:  https://crupodcast.com/show/how-to-create-context-in-storytelling-and-wine-with-matt-morris

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Mar 23 2020

1hr 20mins

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Showcasing the Character of Organic Old-Vine Vineyards with Alex Pitts and Marty Winters

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Maître de Chai translates to cellar master, or the person responsible for the development and aging of wine. By extension, the humble cellar master is the person responsible for the management of the winery.

Established in 2012, Maître de Chai is the personal project of Marty Winters and Alex Pitts, two friends who met in the kitchen of the famed two Michelin star Cyrus in Healdsburg, California. Their focus is on showcasing old-vine, organically farmed classic varietal vineyards. With experiences on the floor of The French Laundry and The Restaurant at Meadowood and in the cellar of Abe Schoener’s Scholium Project, Marty and Alex had a tri-fold education with focus on classic cooking and wine producers while experimenting in the cellar with varietals and winemaking techniques.

Together they look to make wines of high quality in a way that best showcases the sense of place where the grapes are grown and the personality of the vineyard. From the ground to the bottle, the character of the wine is the focus of their endeavor. They source grapes from unique and distinct single vineyards that are impeccably farmed here in California.

Are you ready to more deeply connect with the people and stories on Cru? Browse the show notes with the link below and while you're at it, join the Cru by popping your email into the subscription box under the Cru Mail tab.

BROWSE THE SHOW NOTES: https://crupodcast.com/show/showcasing-the-character-of-organic-old-vine-vineyards-with-alex-pitts-and-marty-winters

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Mar 15 2020

1hr 22mins

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Learning a New Terroir with Chris Carpenter

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Since 2012 he has travelled to McLaren Vale numerous times per year to oversee the winemaking for the Bordeaux varieties at Hickinbotham Clarendon Vineyard, covers a steep cut of country from the ridgetops above the village of Clarendon to the Onkaparinga River in the gorge below. Since its establishment in 1971, the Hickinbotham vineyard has become a part of Australia’s wine heritage, supplying fruit to produce many of Australia’s greatest wines.

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Chris holds a degree in biology from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, and an MBA from the University of Illinois, Chicago. While there, he played big-ten football and worked at the local bars. His friends were Chicago artists and musicians; he packs his trombone when he comes to Australia.

During a visit to Napa Valley, Chris discovered a lifestyle that combined his love of the sciences with his growing passion for culinary and wine pursuits. Soon after, he began studying at UC Davis where he earned a master’s degree in both viticulture and oenology. He further studied in Italy at Tenute Antinori, Santa Cristina Estate before returning to Napa Valley to join the winemaking team at Cardinale in 1998. In 2000, Chris was appointed winemaker for Lokoya and he went on to assume that role for Cardinale, La Jota, and Mt Brave.

In this episode we mention…

UC Davis Viticulture Program Tre Vigne Restaurant Tenute Antinori Solaia Renzo Cotarella, CEO of Marchesi Antinori Thomas Duroux, winemaker of Chateau Palmer Pete Fraser, Yangarra winemaker Rob Mann, winemaker Australian Wine Research Institute (AWRI) The story of Hickinbotham Follow Hickinbotham On… INSTAGRAMWEBSITE

Mar 09 2020

1hr 5mins

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Making Products for How Today’s Generation Gathers with Helena Price Hambrecht & Woody Hambrecht

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I was first introduced to the powerhouse that is Helena Price Hambrecht a few years back when I was living in England and listening to the podcast Design Details on which she was a guest. Intrigued by her eloquence, her candor, and the sheer number of projects that she was working on at the time, I needed to learn more. From there, I started following her work as a photographer and creative in Silicon Valley. Fast forward several years, I’m living here in Healdbsurg, California and am introduced to a line of vermouths and wines, courtesy of the one and only Sara Morgenstern, made by Woody Hambrecht. Sara introduced them to me as we recorded a podcast episode in what is now Haus’s Healdsburg production facility. At the same time, I met Helena, IRL. The connections came full circle.

At the time, I didn’t know Woody’s background, but was stunned by the quality of his products at an incredible value. At Barndiva, where I’m the wine director, I’ve been pouring Woody’s Alysian Sauvignon Blanc from their estate Grist Vineyard for the better part of a year as it is so beautiful and balanced for domestic Sauvignon Blanc. When I heard that Woody & Helena were starting a low-alcohol, direct-to-consumer apéritif to take on the likes of Campari and Aperol providing a product for a more conscious consumer, I knew we had to sit down and record a podcast episode.

In their own words Haus began, “…. with alcohol, an industry that hasn’t evolved since prohibition. It’s still ruled by huge liquor companies who spend big to get their products on store shelves and in bars — and you’re stuck with their choices. Sketchy ingredients. Too much alcohol. Too many hangovers. We wanted something better, so we made our own apéritif.

This is where our story begins. We’re excited to continue making products for how today’s generation gathers. Forget the polished silver and the perfect plating. We’re about getting together and just hanging out. And if it gets a little bit messy, even better.”

I have to say as an alcohol professional, I am not a cocktail person. I drink Champagne and beer with the occasional whiskey. However, Haus has become my go to drink when I get home from a long day to simply unwind with a refreshing spritz of their Citrus Flower with a splash of Topo Chico sparkling water.

Follow Haus on Instagram @drinkhaus and buy Haus at drink.haus

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In this episode we mention…

Haus Dagmar Studios, Helena’s Creative Studio Gin Lane Red Antler Gucci Mane Autobiography Y Combinator Great Oaks VC Follow Haus On… INSTAGRAMFACEBOOKTWITTERWEBSITE

Mar 01 2020

57mins

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The Human Element: A Brief Discussion with Steve Matthiasson

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This is a brief discussion that occurred between Steve Matthiasson and myself before we started recording for the podcast episode published previous to this publishing.

In this conversation, Steve and I discuss the human element in wine in regards to terroir. This subject came up after myself speaking to comparative tastings of white Burgundy and California Chardonnay, the differences between the two in terms of minerality and richness, followed by the stylistic differences. Steve argues that the primary difference is the human element and style, which more often that not is left out of the conversation of terroir.

Feb 26 2020

7mins

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The Relentless Pursuit of Excellence in Farming and Winemaking with Steve Matthiasson

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Steve dreamt of farming his entire life. He became an obsessed gardener and cook while studying philosophy in college. In 1994, while back in grad school for horticulture after three years as a bike messenger/wannabe farmer, he found a job in vineyards and orchards working for a small sustainable agriculture consulting firm. In 1999 he co-authored the California manual on sustainable vineyard practices. In 2002 he started consulting on vineyard practices in Napa. He still loves the challenge of solving vineyard problems for others, but since 2003 the primary focus has been on his own family farming and winemaking with his wife Jill. Steve is a life-long student of the craft of viticulture.

Eric Asimov has said of Steve’s wines, “Matthiasson wines bear an agricultural stamp, as fresh, lively and alive as the best produce from a farmers’ market.” Steve is a James Beard Award Finalist in 2018 & 2019, and has been named Winemaker of the Year by both the San Francisco Chronicle and Food & Wine Magazine.

Learn more about Steve with the show notes here.

In this episode we mention…

Native Seeds Search Organization Gary Nabhan, author on native foods Anson Mills, heritage rices Chef Frank Stitt of Highlands Bar Chef Rodney Scott, James Beard Award Brownen Percival & Steve Matthiasson Sustainability Talks in London on Wine & Cheese Premier Viticulture, Steves Vineyard Company Tenets of Integrated Pest Management • Monitoring • Establishing an Economic Threshold • Cultural Controls 2012 Limerick Lane Pinot Noir 14 Inkas Vodka High Wire Distillery in Charleston, South Carolina Follow Steve On… INSTAGRAMFACEBOOKWEBSITE

Feb 23 2020

1hr 19mins

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Bringing Small Production Wine to the Market with William Whelan

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William Whelan is the Vice President of Wine for Winestyr, an online and physical retail space operating on a direct-to-consumer and wine club model.

Winestyr gives you unprecedented access to a curated collection of wines from the over 7,000 wineries in the United States. Most of these producers are actually too small to warrant the attention of retailers so they are genuinely hard to find. Until now. They’ve combed the country for the best producers, met with hundreds of winemakers, and tasted thousands of wines. Producers that they work with include Matthiasson, Drake Whitcraft, Katie Wilson, Blair Guthrie, Sandhi, Halcyon, Martha Stoumen, and Julien Fayard.

As the Vice President of Wine, Will is responsible for the continual growth of the Winestyr portfolio of incredible producers from around the country, educating staff weekly on wine, and curating the educational materials for each wine that go out Winestyr members.

Learn more about Will and WInestyr with the show notes here.

Feb 17 2020

1hr 17mins

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The Voice of a Site with Cory and Mike Waller

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Mike and Cory Waller are brothers raised running around the hills of Hollister, California. After years of work, travel, and discovery, they find themselves crafting wines a mile away from each other in the Cienega Valley with Mike the winemaker of Calera Wines and Cory the winemaker for Eden Rift Vineyards.

Cory grew up exploring the forests, canyons and river beds of the Cienega Valley. To this day, he knows the back roads of this remote appellation like few others. He counts local farmers, ranchers and fisherman in nearby Monterey Bay among his cadre of friends and colleagues. To describe him as non-interventionist winemaker would be an overstatement, for Cory possesses a strong point-of-view. While vine health is crucial, Cory favors the fruit of vines that struggle profoundly to produce smaller, yet clearly delineated yields. In the cellar, neutral vessels, native yeasts and varying degrees of stem inclusion, play a strong role in a wine’s elévage, as he prefers to transmit the voice of a site, over a heavily stylized approach. His mentors in wine include Tony Soter, Josh Bergstrom and Jim Prosser, of Oregon. He performed stages at New Zealand’s Neudorf and Martinborough Vineyards, and was Assistant Winemaker at the neighboring, iconic estate, Calera. 

A master of Pinot Noir, known for his terroir-driven approach to winemaking, Mike Waller has worked alongside legendary vintner Josh Jensen for more than a decade, helping to guide winemaking at Calera. Mike’s winemaking style honors the character and complexity of Calera’s six renowned sites on Mt. Harlan, which are the source for some of the New World’s most revered wines. In the winery, Mike captures the nuance of these grand cru-caliber vineyards to create sophisticated wines renowned for their layered elegance and aging potential. Mike cut his teeth at Saintsbury in Napa, Chalone in the Central Coast as the assistant winemaker, finally coming to Calera to work with Josh.

Learn more with the show notes here.

Feb 08 2020

1hr 32mins

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Finding Belonging in the Mountains and Vines with Bertus and Ali van Zyl

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Bertus and Alli are the owners and winemakers of Belong Wine Co. based in Napa Valley making Rhône and fringe varietals from the El Dorado Foothills.

With 1 ton of fruit and a whole lot of gumption, started Belong Wine Co. in 2017 to celebrate everything they hold dear: love, adventure, and a sense of exploration. They grew up on opposite ends of the globe - Bertus in Cape Town, South Africa and Alli in the Bay Area sugar hamlet of Crockett.

Bertus knew he wanted to be a winemaker at the age of 15. He went on to study Viticulture and Enology at the University of Stellenbosch. He has worked in the cellar at Deetlefs Estate, Rupert & Rothschild Vignerons, Glen Carlou, Hess Collection, Chappellet, and Regusci and has been in his current position as the winemaker for James Cole, Tank Garage, and T-Vine wineries since 2012. His happy place has always been out in the vineyards, where he can be found in short shorts.

Alli still doesn’t know what she wants to be when she grows up. She has always found great joy in the creative process and is a Jill of many trades. She went to the Harvard of the west, Chico State, where she studied Sociology and learned the beauty of work/life balance. Alli moved to Napa in 2010 with her sister, Holly, who was already working in the wine industry. After managing a wine bar downtown for four years she transitioned to her current role at Whetstone Wine Cellars where she gets to wear many hats, including graphic design, hospitality, events, and marketing.

Feb 02 2020

1hr 17mins

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On Writing and Wine with Esther Mobley

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She writes primarily about California wine, though her beat also includes beer, spirits, drinking culture, cults and, occasionally, doughnuts. In her regular Drink Up column, she reviews Bay Area bars. She leads the editorial team for The Press, the Chronicle’s digital guide to visiting wine country. Her weekly email newsletter, Drinking with Esther, includes a reading digest, product reviews and a behind-the-scenes look into the world of wine.

In 2018, the California Newspaper Publishers Association awarded Esther first place in Feature Writing for her story on a winery born from a California cult, and first place in Agricultural Reporting for her examination of Napa Valley's future. The Association of Food Journalists recognized Esther's work as the Best Writing on Beer, Wine or Spirits in 2017 for her profile of farmer Chuy Ordaz. Her work on the 2017 wine country wildfires was vital to the Chronicle earning the Scripps Howard award. She has twice been a finalist in the Louis Roederer International Wine Writers' Awards.

When she’s not writing about wine, Esther is often speaking about it. She gives seminars, presentations and classes to consumer groups and corporate clients.

In this episode we mention…

San Francisco Chronicle Helen Keplinger, winemaker Paolo Lucchesi, former food editor at The SF Chronicle Federal Wines in Boston run by Len Rothenberg L’Espalier Round Pond Estate Bodega Rolland Smith College Jon Bonné, wine writer and former wine editor at the SF Chronicle Esther’s interview with Randall Grahm on selling Bonny Doon The lost civilization of California Wine by Esther Mobely Seavey Vineyards & Jim Duane Interview on Cru Champagne Pierre Peters Josh Phelps Interview on Cru Follow Esther On… INSTAGRAMTWITTERWEBSITE

Jan 26 2020

32mins

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Philosophies on Winemaking and Scaling a Wine Business with Josh Phelps

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Josh Phelps is the founder and winemaker of Grounded Wine Co. making delicious, all-American, and approachable wines across the west coast while based in St. Helena, California.

Josh’s roots run deep in Napa, raised in a winemaking family, he was exposed to the industry from a young age, starting his very first endeavor in the wine world, “Napa Valet”, at age 15. He continued to build his knowledge of the business through college, selling wine, working the harvest and creating wine for friends with his father, Chris Phelps (of Dominus Estate). As a Napa local, his philosophies on winemaking and business are advised from luminaries of the wine world he calls his mentors and friends like Joel Gott, Kimberly Jones and Leslie Rudd, and of course, his own father. With Grounded Wine Co., Josh hopes to build on this legacy and make his own splash in the wine world while exposing wine drinkers of his own generation to his hometown in wine country.

As a part of his incredible résumé, Josh has been named to Forbes’s 30 under 30 list, Zagat’s 30 under 30 and Wine Enthusiast’s 40 under 40 – though one of his proudest accomplishments is still the Eagle Scout badge he earned at the age of 18.

Grounded Wine Co. is being built to reflect his experience growing up in wine country, and his relationships in the wine community. A grassroots, all-American, wine label, the wines feature grapes from trusted, sustainable vineyards in California and Washington and showcase what it means to be a winemaker today. Working with trusted farmers and childhood friends, his company respects his deep understanding of wine, one that can only be developed growing up around the vines.

In this episode we mention…

Chris Phelps, Josh’s father Dominus Estate Caymus Winery Taken Wine Co. Chambers & Chambers Distributors Trinchero Family Estates Grounded Wine Co. Ad Vivum Cellars, Chris’ wine label Landform Pinot Noir Willamette Valley, newest label from Grounded Work by Gospel, Josh’s design team Terry Wheatly, Vintage Wine Estates the late Leslie Rudd Authentique Wine Cellars, Oregon Dan Petroski (interview 1) / (interview 2) Space Age Rosé of Grenache, Grounded La Gravette de Certan Massican Champagne Vilmart Champagne Pierre Peters Champagne Doyard Follow Grounded Wine Co. On… INSTAGRAMFACEBOOK WEBSITE

Jan 18 2020

54mins

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A Radically Intentional Restaurant & Wine Bar with Lauren Feldman and Tanner Walle of Valley Bar & Bottle

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Valley Bar & Bottle is a neighborhood restaurant, wine bar, and wine retail establishment that simultaneously reveres and revitalizes Sonoma cuisine and hospitality. Launching as a dinnertime restaurant, Valley will gradually incorporate daytime services.

Valley aims for a sustainable approach to all aspects of its business, from waste-reducing and eliminating practices to radical intentionality behind the economy and environment they will create for their employees. As Sonoma locals, they’re looking for creative ways to support and promote the community. They are dedicated to making sure those that work alongside them are able to live fully in the place they serve. 

Lauren Feldman and Tanner Walle, two of the co-founders, manage the small front-of-house team, while co-founders Emma Lipp and Stephanie Reagor helm the back-of-house. The beverage program includes local producers as well as imports, with an emphasis paid to organic & biodynamic agriculture practices. The menu is driven by the availability of seasonal produce and the offerings of local purveyors, and influenced by the team’s travels and personal history.

Lauren was born and raised between Sonoma and Santa Rosa in Sonoma Valley. Her studies took her to Indiana, Italy, and then New York, where she became immersed in the food and wine world. Her professional background is in wine sales and branding with an emphasis on restaurant beverage direction + management, winery hospitality + management, brand development and event production. With over a decade of hospitality and beverage management experience, Lauren has managed restaurants & wine lists from New York (L’Artusi, Anfora, west~bourne), to Nashville (Husk), and back to her native California (Molina, CALA). 

In 2010, Lauren returned to Sonoma County to develop a closer connection to wine production, starting with launching the hospitality program at Scribe Winery, where she managed the tasting room and events for 4 years. As a harvest intern at Foradori Winery in 2014, Lauren affirmed her passion for biodynamic practices and natural winemaking. In 2015 she started SurPointe, where—with a focus on like-minded producers—she has launched wine brands, grown restaurant beverage programs, and overseen creative collaborations bridging the divide between wine and hospitality communities nationwide. In 2016 she oversaw the creative development and implementation at Napa newcomer Ashes & Diamonds as Director of Sales and Marketing. That same year she received her WSET Diploma certification.

After juggling many roles and tasks at once, Lauren is eager to bring her varied skills together to build a program and community in Sonoma, the town where she was raised and has again called her home for the past 9 years.

Tanner Walle’s career in hospitality spans over a decade, with rolls as both GM and beverage manager for some of New York City’s most well-known wine establishments. Most notably, under the guide and mentorship of James Beard Award-winning sommelier Paul Grieco, Tanner oversaw operations and hospitality at Terroir wine bars, a quintessential helm for both aspiring and veteran wine professionals alike. There, Tanner would help to craft and pioneer a wine and hospitality program many restaurants and wine bars still model today. 

In 2015 he orchestrated the opening of The Riddling Widow, a discrete Champagne bar frequented primarily by winemakers and other industry pros.  

Beyond restaurant work, Tanner spent much of his tenure in NYC as a consultant for many large-scale wine and hospitality events, including with NBC, Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, PBS and LinkedIn. Tanner would also contribute on panels for NY Champagne Week, Social Media Week and New York Cider Week.

Tanner is excited to bring his New York City expertise and love for hospitality and beverage education to the community of Sonoma.

Jan 13 2020

1hr 4mins

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iTunes Ratings

62 Ratings
Average Ratings
47
5
4
4
2

Awesome

By AudreyDY - Dec 07 2018
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I find this podcast inspiring!

Good stuff

By cdoc - Jan 27 2018
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Really great subjects / topics and questions. Very relaxed conversations.