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The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Clearwater Canyon Cellars - Lewiston, ID Pt. 1

Welcome to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast, I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass wine has a past. Our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure at wineries around the globe. After all, GRAPE minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. Our featured winery is: We head to my hometown. It's where I grew up and at 10 years of age, delivering the Lewiston Morning Tribune newspaper spent many of Saturday mornings canvassing the neighborhood looking for lawn mowing and car washing jobs so that I could head to Lewis-Clark State College play pinball all day long. I also learned to hunt and fish accumulated hundreds of miles in the Army Corps of Engineer levee system. I also began my radio career here as a senior in high school and started working full-time at KOZE FM and AM. We head to the panhandle of Idaho to the city of Lewiston.

My name is Coco Umiker and I am a winemaker and co-owner of Clearwater Canyon Cellars.

Ok, Coco, you've really built Clearwater Canyon Cellars into something impressive and we'll get to that later. But where did this begin?

Well, it really started with my love of science and strangely, it stretches all the way back to when I was a little kid. But I was 11 years old. I had cancer. And that ended up, you know, I being in hospitals a lot and around medical people. And so when I took off for college, I'm much better now. I'm good. Got through it in good shape. But when I went off to college, I thought, you know what? I'm going to be a pediatric oncologist and the undergrad premed program at the University of Idaho. They encourage students to do a double major in microbiology, molecular biology, and biochemistry. I got into it and I loved it.

Wow. That's very ambitious, microbiology, OK? I could see how that could dovetail into winemaking is Louis Pasteur. You're kind of originated that and then molecular biology, seeing how the biological activity in and between cells and then biochemistry, the processes with living organisms, I could see where that would be kind of all-consuming with your time and your thoughts and your studies. But I'm guessing that's not the course that you ended up taking

Partway through. I just realized that I wanted to do something more creative. I wanted to be outside. I wanted to be able to come back to my family farm in Lewiston and do something with that place. I never lived in Lewiston, I lived in Boise. I spent all my summers up in the Lewis and farm with my grandparents. And so I stayed in that degree and was just this hardcore science nerd. So University of Idaho and Washington State University are about eight miles apart in Washington State University is the leader in the northwest in terms of wine programs. And so it was very wonderful for me because I was able to actually cross some classes. And in the program over there, I was so sold. I mean, I just when I found and discovered fermentation and wine and all of that, I was like I knew that's what I wanted to do. I actually planted so my boyfriend at the time and I ended up becoming my husband he I second to last year of my undergrad. So I was two thousand three, asked my grandfather if we could plant a quarter acre of vines on the family farm down here, and he let us do it. And then in two thousand four, we started a winery in a garage.

So in two thousand four, you start the winery with your boyfriend at the time, Karl, who turns out to be your husband later to start the winery, because you've got all of these angel investors lined up and you've got all this money and you think it's a great idea. Let's start a winery. Right?

We had three other partners in the beginning of Clearwater Canyon because we were young and we had no money. At that point, Karl had paid off his student loans. You got a sweet deal. He actually grew up in Arkansas and his dad was a professor at the University of Arkansas in the music department. So he got a really great education for a little cheaper because he had a father that was faculty they gave, you know, children faculty a better deal. And so that was fantastic. So he was able to get a chemistry degree from the University of Arkansas and came out here to Idaho on a research assistantship to study soil science and earn his master's degree. And that's what I did at WSU. I was on a research assistantship. You're both able to kind of work on projects that in his case that the farming industry was really interested in. He did soils work and I was studying Brettanomyces, which was a hot topic in the wine world at the time.

In part two of our interview with Coco Umiker of Clearwater Canyon Cellars, we explore what she loves. Oh, my God. Yeah. I mean, I love.

Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest Kelly this episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by IHYSM. If you like the show, please tell your friends and pets and subscribe until next time pour the wine, and ponder your next adventure.

00:05:22 7/5/2021

Past Episodes

The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Welcome to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast; I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass, wine has a past. Our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure at wineries around the globe. After all, grape minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. Our featured winery is: we conclude our interview with Dean Andrews of Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyards in Virginia.

I think I would have you talk to Brooks because Brooks is actually an awesome story because he's one of the people I mentioned earlier. OK, let's bring Brooks into the conversation. Brooks, would you agree with that? Is it interesting? Interesting or long? That depends on the listener. I have definitely been here for pretty much the whole decade that we've been here. And I started in the kitchen. I then became a chef. So I worked on the code line helping prep, and worked weddings. And then I became a bartender, and then I became the senior bartender. And then I left to work with our winemaker. I came back, and then I became our vineyard manager. I operate more as our vineyard production manager now. So, Jack, of all trades, master of none, I guess.

In doing all of those different jobs and things, where does education, where does college come into the mix?
At the time, I wanted to add a degree, and I was going to get my degree and go back to grad school. So I went to the front of the house, and that's how I started studying chemistry, and that got me into one. So my degree was actually in psychology at the time. I was actually taking my degree and then go to grad school for, you know, potentially, you know, either like becoming a psychiatrist or a clinical counselor. But to get my brain back in school mode, I started taking chemistry. And that led to me thinking, well, fermentation science is pretty cool. I thought I was throwing around the idea of making beer, but I already worked at the winery at the time. So I was like, well, let's just see where this goes. And half a decade later, I'm running the production for an entire winery. You know, it's funny because I haven't actually gone to school for viticulture or winemaking. So if you can show it to me, you know, show me three times, you know, I'll try and get it right by their time. And especially when you're working in a vineyard, know you can read books about pruning techniques and how to deal with a vineyard. But until you actually do it, you know, it's a different story.
At the time, we're recording this. Just looking at your temperatures, the highs are in the upper 70s to the mid-70s, and yet the overnight lows are dipping into the 30s. What are you doing at this time of year when you see that kind of temperature?

We're still technically in what I call frost watch season. Frost can come and kill your entire crop. I've been basically on call for all of April. I consider myself on call until the end of May. So there's only really a couple of things you can do. One is just hope and pray that it doesn't get below 32 degrees. But we're looking for that freezing point, 32 degrees. And we're looking at the wind speeds because it's breezy, like about five miles per hour, six, seven, eight miles per hour. The wind isn't going to settle, and the wind is carrying water vapor. And so you also have to look at the dew point. If the dew point is getting close to the actual temperature. That means that the water droplets are going to settle, and they're going to crystallize and freeze. And that's going to necrotize your blood tissue, the blood tissue, necrotizing; then you're not going to get a flower to pollinate. So we have these wind machines that we can turn on, and they're amazing machines. And essentially, it's a helicopter blade fan that's attached to a tower, and it rotates like your normal house fan would. But in a 360-degree radius above us, there's this pocket of warm air about 100, 150 feet up. And the spinning of that fan creates a vortex that holds that warm air down and spreads it around the vineyard, and raises the ambient air temperature. So if it's sitting at 30 degrees, and that can raise the ambient air temperature by just three degrees Fahrenheit, I just saved my entire crop in one night. Will somebody answer that phone? It's time, boys and girls, for our listener voice mail. My name is Ricardo. I'm from Santa Cruz, Mexico. So I'm going to be interesting to tell you. The Mexican government charges a minimum of 40 percent taxes on all wine. Thank you for that, Ricardo. I did not know that. Well, despite Mexico's Spanish heritage, as you might guess, it is not a major wine-drinking country. Beer and Tequila are far more popular than wine. And, you know, the average wine consumption per capita is only two glasses a year. And because of that tax, it makes it difficult for wine to compete with beer and Tequila. However, wine consumption is increasing in Mexico. In 2006, there were less than twenty-five wineries in Mexico, and now there are over 100. Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest Kelly. This episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by IHYSM. If you like the show, please tell your friends and pets and subscribe until next time, pour the wine, and ponder your next adventure.

00:05:12 5/31/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Welcome to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast, I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass, wine has a past. Our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure at wineries around the globe. After all, grape minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. Our featured winery is: OK, in this episode, and I'm just going to give you some random questions, Dean. I can imagine having a farm and vineyard located in Virginia. It's very scenic. So what do we see when we come into the parking lot of Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyards?

You're looking out over the valley, OK It is up on the high side of the valley facing west, and that there are four mountain ranges. When you come out of the valley, it ends up being where the Blue Ridge Mountains are. So you got four beautiful mountain ranges sort of float in your view and the future and you think they will never be developed close in because John Grisham, the author, owns a big chunk of the ones right in front of us. And the rest of it is part of our Bondurant farm, which is a conservation easement ownership group. So it is all rural. We won't have any homes or anything built in our viewshed. And you're looking out over our six acres of vines, down across a wildflower meadow, and over to some closer woods where we've been able to go in and pull out all the invasive species. And there is a program this last year that was granted to plant native trees. So we were able to go in and replace it with some native oaks and other trees. So it's just a very pristine rural view, very calm.
Well, your wife, Lynn, has an exceptional design and event expertise and founded EASTON Events, so merging those two worlds together into the creation of Capitol Hill Farm and vineyards. Was that a difficult transition?

After I left, Orient-Express Lynn's business on the Easton Events side was just taking off. She had been doing events just here in Virginia but was beginning to do more nationally. And one of the points she mentioned to me was that she had a lot of clients who really wanted to come to this particularly beautiful part of rural Virginia and to host an outdoor wedding. But there really weren't enough places to do it. And that was when the lights sort of went off my mind. I thought I always sort of love the winery and the vineyard business from having been involved with it in Italy primarily, and so wanting to do it. And it provided us a means of both collaborating and working together. And without Lynn, we wouldn't have been able to get those the initial clients to come in to help underwrite the overall investment. So doing weddings and private events helps underwrite the broader picture of the wine business. So that was kind of what our collaboration was. And her office is still here with us out here. And she also has an office in Charleston, South Carolina as well. So it's been it's been a great partnership because not only are we partners in life, it's now seven grandchildren. But we also have been able to work successfully together with Lynn taking lead on some of the design side and some of the concept development side and my kind of make it happen on a day-to-day basis.

We both wanted this important point. We both wanted to create a winery which had a very experiential focus if you will. And what I mean by that is we have, in addition to just doing wine tastings and focusing on just the wine as a singular aspect of it. We do cooking classes, we do horticultural gardening classes, we do some classes. Which are your traditional Sunni view of what we're doing with our wines? Of course. And then seasonally, we do each fall harvest full moon dinner where we bring our primarily our wine club members out and we take over the lawn and we are doing outdoor tables and you're able to go down and actually see some grapes being harvested and go down the garden and you pull up some of beets out of the ground and become part of the dinner. And then the chef is out there with one of our farm partners doing some grilling. So you're able to experience what it would be like to be able to live in a fully self-sustained farm environment, if you will, and have that authentic rural American experience. We're expanding. And now to include a new greenhouse, expanding the gardens. And we've got about a dozen farm gardeners where we are the largest client for people who are building up everything from making cheese to growing cattle. And really, it's an integral part of what we do.

Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest Kelly this episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by IHYSM if you like the show, please tell your friends and pets and subscribe. Until next time pour the wine and ponder your next adventure.

00:05:04 5/24/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards - North Garden, VA Pt. 3
Welcome to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast; I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass, wine has a past. Our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure at wineries around the globe. After all, grape minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. Our featured winery: we continue our conversation with Dean Andrews' of Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards. The wine industry has a five billion dollar economic impact on the state of Virginia, and Virginia ranks in the top 10 of most wineries per state. So I imagine, Dean, that you are always looking to improve and enhance the experience of when people come to visit your property. We also have been looking at what we can do when people get here. We have a garden map. So if they want to take some time to get to know the property a bit more, you can do a self-guided tour of the vineyards and understand what is planted, where you can go down the garden and see the seasonal variation is bed by bed. You can go and play with the chickens for a while and come up for your table. So it again is delivering on that full farm experience.
Ok, let's suppose that I'm in the area, and I'm going to Washington, D.C., visiting the Smithsonian Institute and checking out the Struggle for Justice exhibit. And I want to visit Pépin Hill Farm and Vineyards. Tell me what happens after that.

You're in Washington. You want to come down here on Sunday and have the two-hour wine experience and the food and wine experience and garden tours and all that. You can go on our website, and you can pick the date in the time size of your party. You click on it, you have a confirmed table for that time, and then we're able to communicate with you in advance to set expectations, answer any questions. And so we know that you will actually be showing up at that time. And it's great because ninety-five percent of the people are book show up.

Soon after I do the two-hour wine tasting experience, I'm getting hungry, so I want to get some food. What is that step like?

When you come here to the tasting room, every single dish we serve along with our wines is part of our wine pairings. We don't do the traditional thing where you come in and just do wine tasting and wine pairings. We have it set up with food, so every dish has one or maybe two wines that are specifically designed to be paired with that dish, to come to sort of like small plates, to come in with small plate cuisine experience. And we have the equivalent of a chef's table, which we call the vintner's table. You know, anywhere from eight people, up to 12 people. That can be four-course, five-course that are paired with our wines. So it really presents a real-world example of how the cuisine in the wines parallels each other.

"This place inspires me to come to work every day and look at this view is magical, and being able to pick things fresh from our chef's garden gives me even more respect for my ingredients and the environment." That's a direct quote from your chef. Ian Rynecki is one of the top catering chefs in New York. In Manhattan, he and his wife planned to leave Manhattan, will come down and settle into a quieter, smaller town for the next chapter in their lives. So I have a strong culinary team. Diane has three people working for her on the viticulture side, and we have a full garden. In the last two years, we've added on chickens, and we've got our bees. So we make our own honey, we've got chickens, and we've got gardens. So really, it's a complete story.

Whenever I go on vacation, and I visit someplace memorable, I love to bring back a little souvenir, a little reminder of the great time I had. And you've come upon a great idea.
We put together these terrific small glass bottles for people can custom select put wines they want to taste. We give them tasting notes and a card. And because they have these files, they can actually go, and they can self-determine how quickly they can try one and try the one next to it. And they come back to us, and they show us their notes. So again, it's about having an engaging experience where people feel like they're part of it. It's four bottles in this really cute little case. And we give them glasses, we give them the notes, and they can go out on a lawn, and they can do it. They can go down the garden and taste it. So it really just allows that allows them to control. So you are not standing in a bar with somebody talking to you. You really are able to experience it on your own. And then we check-in for any clarifications on what does it mean if you got a low acid wine? What does it mean if you've got something which is more robust on it was high with high tannins, that kind of stuff? It's been interesting how we have changed the model, focusing on it from what the customer experience would want to be and then how we can deliver that elevated customer experience.

Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest Kelly. This episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by IHYSM. If you like the show, please tell your friends and pets and subscribe. Until next time pour the wine and ponder your next adventure.

00:05:19 5/17/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Welcome to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast, I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass, wine has a past. Our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure at wineries around the globe. After all, grape minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. We continue our conversation with Dean Andrews' of Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards through your networking and connections. I love the story where you tell me about how you incorporated your winemaker into Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards. Well, yeah, actually, interesting points. When I took over and we bought the 21 Club in New York from the original family. And so we came in and spent money converting their former apartments in the private dining board rooms. And we revamped the whole thing and we did the whole original prohibition area. Wine cellar is part of that. I put together a marketing program for we would bring in winemakers from every region in the world where we own the property. So we brought in winemakers from South Africa. We were brought in winemakers from France, Italy, and because we owned Keswick Hall here in Charlottesville and the Virginia wine industry, and Monticello Wine trail was just getting going back then. Back then, we're probably only like three or four vineyards at all within wineries. And we were the 10th to join but before that. So I was doing bringing in winemakers into the twenty-one club to do private lunches primarily for the press and influencers. And so I came across Michael Shaps, who is our winemaker here. He was just getting his business going, making wines. He's classically trained in Bordeaux. So he was here trying to make it work in Virginia. So I hooked up with him. He is our winemaker. So we now own a portion of his custom crush business as well. As custom crush is more popular in California than it is elsewhere. But we have about a dozen clients and we are the anchor or the largest one, and we're the anchor on it. But he has other smaller private labeling and custom blending that we are doing for other members as well. So Michael Schatz's are our winemaker and he is someone that I met. Probably almost 10 years before we opened here. So Michael and I have known each other and worked together for about 20 years. Now you've got your winemaker, but your hiring is not finished there. So we started off with a viticulturist and then we were able to hire the horticulturalists. Diane was the lead horticulturist at Monticello, Jefferson's home here. So she had huge experience. We bought some railroad ties and they did about eight or ten raised beds, primarily to grow herbs for the garden.

I'm guessing here. But just looking at how organized everything is around your website and everything is done for a reason, then what's your growing and cooking is in harmony with the wine.

When you come here to our tasting room, every single dish we serve along with our lines is their wine pairings. We don't do the traditional thing where you come in and just do wine tasting and wine pairings. We have it set up with food, so every dish has one or maybe two lines that are specifically designed to be paired with that dish, to come to sort of like small plates, so you come in with a small plate cuisine experience. And we have the equivalent of a chef's table, which we call the vintner's table, you know, anywhere from eight people, up to twelve people. That can be four-course, five-course that are paired with our wines. So it really presents a real-world example of how the cuisine in the wines parallels each other.

Looking back at 2020, and even into this year, what have you taken out of the pandemic and modified perhaps to make the winery and the farm better?

In order to both control, the people coming in from the tastings for just overall safety and sanitary cleanliness? We changed the spacing and we went to a pure reservations model. So now and it's continued, even though we're coming back out, hopefully on the other side, of Covid, in the next couple of months, we will continue to have the reservations only because we get people who, if you think about it, if you're up in Washington, DC, you're going to drive down here from experience with us. Pippin Hill, you really need to know that when you show up at two o'clock in the afternoon on a Saturday, you've got your table ready. You're not going to be told it's an hour's wait in order to be able to have the experience. So we have been able to we're doing fewer covers, fewer people coming in from the tastings every day. But the economics of it are, in fact, better because they're coming down. They're experiencing the full meal multicore thing, and they're walking away with sometimes two or three cases of the wine because of that connection they've been able to establish. We learned a lot and we have changed even the way we're basically doing. Tastings, we are going to be going back to just rolling up to the bar and doing the tastings.

Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest Kelley. This episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by IHYSM, if you like the show. Please tell your friends and pets and subscribe until next time or pour the wine and ponder your next adventure.

00:05:27 5/10/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

We visit the state of Virginia, home to our latest winery. Hi, this is Dean Andrews from Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyards outside Charlottesville, Virginia. There are over two hundred fifty registered vineyards and wineries in the state of Virginia. Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyards is located in the Monticello American viticulture area. It's a member of the Virginia Winery Association in the Monticello Wine Trail. As we will learn in the upcoming episodes, Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyards has got everything your imagination could want in a farm and winery. And Dean, what inspired all of this? I was interested in building up my own small boutique hotel winery ownership and management company because, for a number of years, I was the senior operating officer of Orient-Express Hotels. I joined them in nineteen ninety-five when I sold our Charleston Place Hotel in Charleston, South Carolina; as part of building up Orient Express on the North American side, we owned a number of fantastic luxury businesses, including the 21 Club in New York. So the 21 Club, which has one of the largest and most renowned wine cellars in the U.S., was also a good experience for me to learn. And I was able to get the import license to bring the Capannelle wines into the U.S. So I think I sort of understood the winery business from a very pragmatic, entrepreneurial. How do you build up a winery? So it's not about going in and planting grapes and then kind of figuring out what happens down the road. So it is a much more strategic investment. And after having left the Orient Express, my wife, Lynn, and I, we're settled here in Charlottesville, and we're taking a look at what we can do together as a partnership on the business side. Lynn has Eastern events, which is one of the premier destinations, wedding planning, and design. I'm proud of her. She's been named by publications like Vogue and Harper's Bazaar, and Town and Country Weddings is one of the top planners and designers for her industry literally in the world. So we put our heads together, and we looked at what she's probably 20 different properties and kept coming back to this one particular location. And then we brought in viticulture, listen, to determine what the soil was like and the wells and everything. And that's how we decided to go ahead and build up and launch Pippin Hill. So after doing your due diligence, seeing that the area and the soil can sustain a winery, how did you decide what type of winery you would create? Because not only have you got to financial responsibility, but this part of Virginia has got a huge history of deep, rich American history. And you want to do all of that proud. We set out to build a very different business model for the winery. We wanted it to be a culinary winery, which had a really strong connection to our immediate grounds. So when we put together the initial business plan on it, we hired a viticulturist, obviously, to help us get the vines in and sort out the soil conditions in the varietals. And we expanded the starting from six acres to where we now have 40 acres. So it's growing a lot when we start the first year, only doing fifteen hundred, eighteen hundred cases, and we're up to about ten, twelve thousand cases now. So it was very much a planned growth. And we also have taken a look at how do you keep a business fresh every year? In part two of our interview with Dean Andrews' of Phippen Hill Farm and Vineyards, Dean will answer that very question. Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest Kelly. This episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by IHYSM. If you like the show, please tell your friends and pets and subscribe; until next time, pour the wine and ponder your next adventure.

00:04:51 5/4/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast
Grape experimentation, paint night its part of our concluding conversation with Patrick Zimmerer of Table Mountain Winery in Huntley, Wyoming.
00:05:55 4/13/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Welcome to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast, I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass, wine has a past our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure and wineries around the globe. After all, the grape minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. Our featured winery is: We continue our conversation with Patrick, owner of Table Mountain Vineyard in Wyoming. I think, Patrick, you offer a flair that not many wineries in the entire world can't offer, you've got other crops that you're working on simultaneously while producing wine? Well, we still do the traditional farming as well to try and keep the farm going. The winery has turned into 10 acres. Could really be a full time job. And we do it as good as we can. But, yeah, we do need you know, when they tell you to diversify in any industry, they don't. So you need 10 or 20 more people to handle that extra little extra hats that you wear. So on top of that, you've been hosting we have the winery. You know, we're grateful and we've kind of become a community hub. We hosted wedding showers and baby showers and weddings and the classes on the weekend. So we really do have four or five different very active parts of the winery all in play. But they do come out to make a be successful venture that the thing itself and allows us to stay on the farm and keep enjoying what we enjoy. How much has the vineyard grown since you first started? In terms of the vineyard. When we started in 04, we probably had about five acres total of grapes. We kind of keep planting every year. We never did everything on one big block. We started our very first year with three hundred minding our own wine and then progressively planted one two acres every year. So right now in 2021, we're about ten acres, which we we do about a thousand vines per acre. Our capacity in terms of the winery ebbs and flows based on the weather. We'll have a bumper crop and then the next year will have a very, very small harvest. So our our capacity, we're pretty variable, three to six thousand gallons in terms of wine, which we measure in gallons, which tells you how small we are. But again, we're just a pretty small mom and pop and son shop. And we do harvest anywhere in terms of grapes. We do have some other growers who grow for it. We go anywhere from 15 to 30 times a grapes a year. Obviously, last year, 20, 20 was a change for all of us. But how have you adapted to the new retail climate? Yeah, I'd say most people really hit the ground running with online sales and where we self distribute, we really slowed our retailing or our wholesale down just because we needed to. Our retail sales just here at the tasting probably made up 60 percent this year, which is about 40 percent wholesale. In other years we've been flipflop that way, 60 40 the other way. So we do have an Internet presence. We don't ship as much as we probably or more to that avenue as much as you do. We kind of just stick more to our base and through the tasting room and then through retail stores that we do have. How many different kinds of varieties of grapes are you growing? We have about 14 different varieties that we're growing up grapes and a few of them weather related, soil related, don't always show up at the same time. So we have a few that we'll get a harvest off of maybe every two to three years. We have some other growers who kind of ebb and flow the same way. So at any given time, we can have about 10 to 11, 11 different wines. Right now we're at a pretty constant seven with the variety that we have that continually produce your labels. Looks like you have a lot of fun. Did you do the labels on all of your wine? We do. It's kind of a collective family and friends effort. But we will you know, we're modeling here in the vineyard. We we try and come up with names and and different labels. And a lot of the labels are inspired or this artwork of pictures we take around the farm and then again, some retro kind of Western themes just to kind of tie in our Wyoming ties to. Will somebody answer that phone? It's time, boys and girls for our listener voicemail. Hi, this is Christi and I'm from Canada. I was wondering what type of wine or wine would be best served? Just like a Sangria. My future party parties, like, you know when Covid is over. Ok, Christie said sangria is Spanish drink of red wine mixed with lemonade, fruit and spices. So if you want to keep it authentic, you want to use a Spanish wine and that would be Garnacha or with a Spanish accent. Got to not shop. So for your party to keep it authentic, stick with not. But if you're just by yourself, you could go crazy and add some pinot noir and then, of course, add your carbonated water and brandy. Great question. Thank you. Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest calling. This episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by his. If you like the show, please tell your friends and pets and subscribe until next time or the wine and ponder your next adventure.

00:05:31 4/9/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Welcome to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast, I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass, wine has a past. Our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure at wineries around the globe. After all, the grape minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. Our featured winery is in part two of our conversation with Table Mountain Winery in Huntley, Wyoming. Patrick explains what a lawyer is doing running a winery. Focused on agricultural law, natural resource law in Wyoming. We're pretty arid, so water laws a very important aspect to anybody in agriculture in Wyoming. Just once the entire west, just water rights protecting what we have. And I mean, that's the basic one. We have a lot of endangered species in Wyoming that producers have to work around and the ins and outs of trying to keep agriculture going and the regulations that come out of the industry that producers have to face and how to deal with those. Yeah, you are facing some different obstacles. I see where there are twenty four species in Wyoming that are endangered, including the black footed ferrets, the Canadian lynx, yellow billed cuckoo, some very familiar with what I see early on in the farm before wine became a crop, you had sugar beets, beans, alfalfa, corn. Throughout the decades, our farm is always in a diversified farm and we kind of change with the way the industry goes. And in the 2000s, the sugar beet industry was leaving our county and leaving our area. It wasn't you have to be pretty big scale this thing. And so, again, my thesis was just looking at ways to take small acreages, keep them in agriculture and maybe be able to do something different with them. And, you know, growing grapes is the most value added ag products you can get from, you know, from berried bottle and from the ground up. You're in control the grapes. And if you choose to go the winery route, it truly is a 100 percent value added ag product, which was something that our state was a little behind on. And we had some microbreweries, but we just didn't have an industry that really focused on that at the time. So you've got this plan put together and then what happened in 2004 kind of threw you curve. All these grapes on the ground. I think by 2004 we had five or six acres producing. We found a winery in a nearby town, Cheyenne, Wyoming, and they were producing wines with grapes from Colorado. And they said, we'll buy anything you grow. But we weren't too worried about the winery part because we had a market. And that spring when we were going to start to kind of have our first harvest, we called them and checked in on them and they said, oh, we're closing, we're disbanding of the company and we're no longer going to be a winery. So our kick start with our business plan that we had created really went into play immediately in the 10000 that we won, disappeared very quickly by the time we had our old farmhouse that we converted quickly and changed a few things around and were able to have a makeshift winery, probably home brewers had a better set up than we did when we first became a winery. But we we were able to get it done and and we had no idea of what would happen with harvest. We started kind of home winemaking on the side, but we we sure learned a lot just by the grapes coming in and having to figure out how to go from there, Having the experience of being a farmer with the sugar beets and alfalfa and the corn, etc. I'm sure that helped a little bit. But there had to be a learning curve in growing grapes. Grapes are very drought tolerant, if you will. I mean, we planted our grapes in the midst of one of the worst droughts that we ever had. We kind of joke for about three or four years. They haven't seen much water at all. We went to a few workshops and they said, you have to make the vines struggle. You can't over water, then hibernate in the winter. And this was all based on the Eastern Nebraska University, Nebraska. And we went to a few workshops in the summer and we were at one place and there was a huge lake there and they said, oh, we got six inches of rain last night. That's just not a lake. It's just a little pond. And we started laughing and we went home immediately and turned on the drip line. So the grapes, because we took the whole don't give them water and don't baited them. The heart and our brains haven't seen six inches of rain in the seven years that they were developing. And so we took a little different mindset about midstream when the vines were six to seven to make sure we were giving them adequate water. I do think the first year we were tougher than we should have been. That's what makes our planet so rough. We will be in the negative twenty below in December and then we'll be one hundred in July. So our grapes see the spectrum of ranging temperatures. Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest Kelly, this episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by IHYSM, If you like the show. Please tell your friends and pets and subscribe until next time pour the wine and ponder your next adventure.

00:05:19 4/5/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Welcome to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast, I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass wine has a past our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure and wineries around the globe. After all, grape minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. Our featured winery is. In this episode, we head to the state that is the 10th largest state in area, it's the least populated, it's home to Old Faithful. In Yellowstone, almost half the state is owned by the federal government through national forests grasslands. An Air Force base, Rocky IV was filmed here, Ivan Drago not on the frozen landscape of Russia, but the Grand Tetons National Park in Wyoming. Hello, this is Patrick Zimmerer of Table Mountain Vineyards and Winery in Wyoming. Owner, winemaker, and we are Table Mountain Vineyards and winery. We're actually growing grapes and making 100 percent Wyoming wines. So before Table Mountain Winery, there was the family farm. And what year was that established? In 1926. So kind of the establishment of our family farm, which is still in our family today, my great grandfather homestead in World War One veteran and I came to this area from Nebraska to Homestead and make a farm, Keeping your farm going as a full time business. So I mentioned it to starting the winery was probably inspired by you. I was a senior at the University of Wyoming. My major was AG Economics. We had to do a thesis project. I came home one winter. There was a meeting. We live right next to Nebraska from the University of Nebraska about growing grapes and the possibility of starting a new industry, the wild area basically throughout my thesis paper, and thought it was interesting enough to write a whole paper on it. And after that was said and done, my dad said, you did all this work. We've got a few acres here and there with plant grapes, and that's really how we got into it. No plan was kind of a vision of trying to grow something outside of the realm of normal agriculture in Wyoming and being able to keep the same amount of land and and start a new venture off of this. So this is two thousand one. We've already landed a man on the moon, and yet wine and grapes hadn't been grown in Wyoming, in Nebraska, in the area before that successfully. They had not been not successful. I mean, there were a lot of homesteaders and immigrants throughout the generations that brought grapes with them. There's some history to find that there would be some Italians here and there who would just bring truckloads of wine or grapes in from California or wherever. But nobody was actually trying to essentially do a vineyard. But at the time, there weren't any spots truly in Wyoming climate wise that the traditional vinifera would grow there. So it took 20 years in the making from the University of Minnesota and other great leaders in the Midwest that we're able to develop these cold, hardy hybrids that can survive our very, very cold winters. Yeah, I would say Wyoming is the extreme weather climate is drier and windier in comparison to most of the United States with greater temperature extremes. The average high temperature during November, December and January is a robust thirty four degrees. In part two of our interview with Patrick of Table Mountain Winery in Wyoming, we'll find out how getting a law degree helps in the winemaking business. What's going to happen at this time? Boys and girls for our listener voicemail. Hi, this is Devin from San Antonio. I was wondering if you could grow grapes in any climate. What's the coldest climate the grapes grow in? And do all fifty states produce grapes within reason? Yes, you can grow grapes. In any climate, many European international grape varieties could survive temperatures as low as minus 20 degrees Fahrenheit. In fact, Minnesota's most popular cold climate hybrid varieties have been studied to survive temperatures as low as minus thirty five. Wind production is undertaken in all 50 states. In fact, California produces eighty nine percent of all United States wine, and the United States is the fourth largest producing wine country in the world right after Italy, Spain and France. Great question. Thank you very much, Devin. Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest calling. This episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by IHYSM. If you like to show, please tell your friends and pets and subscribe until next time or the line and ponder your next adventure.

00:04:58 3/30/2021
The Best 5 Minute Wine Podcast

Welcome. to The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast, I'm your host, Forrest Kelly. From the seed to the glass, wine has a past. Our aim at The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast is to look for adventure at wineries around the globe. After all, grape minds think alike. Let's start the adventure. We finish our interview with Wollersheim Winery. Phillip, you're just not a winery, are you? I started the Distilling Side in 2010, and then my son and Celine's husband, Tom Leonard is the distiller is managing that side of the business. I do all the tasting with them. We have about maybe twelve hundred barrels of aging right now of bourbon, brandy, rye, apple. And I love tasting, so I'm always involved in the tasting. I can't run it all. My son is running the bistro. So Roman went to. So you did UW Madison in Food Science and then you went to France and he did. Bocuse Culinary School is one of the greatest culinary school of the world. So Roman studied at that school. And so now we can do we have not we're not calling it a restaurant. We have a bistro. So we're not opening in the evening for supper and fancy stuff like that. A sandwich, that bread. It looks fancy looking at the website and the menu. It looks Fancy. Yeah, it is fancy without the price tag. I'd like to find out where the passion lies. And I think asking what you're most proud of. We'll answer that. Proud of showcasing Wisconsin that it is not all Bordeaux and California, that we are a profitable and valuable, vibrant, beautiful business, that we are supporting 40 families. Yeah, we have 35 Full-Time Employee, 50 Part-Time. And we spread the wealth. You know, we have four weeks of paid vacation after ten years plus one week of sick days. We've done it a little bit the French way. So that's the pride of showcasing Wisconsin. And yes, it can be done successfully. You said at the winery, small was small and it's had gone through some changes and things. But looking at the website, it looks massive. How big is the property? It used to be small. I mean, the winery we used to make whining about where the eight foot ceiling and that bone is no longer there. So in nineteen ninety three we built a fermentation room and then we expanded our scenes just to give you a quick scale. And I will answer your question on the property. We we were doing eight thousand gallons in 1984. We doing two hundred sixty thousand gallons today. Wow. From the barn to just 260000 gallons now.So the property itself is about eighty acres and is 20 acres of vineyard on this property. And then we lease another 10 acres miles down the road. Yeah. Because you've got you've got three businesses kind of all packaged on to the property, you've got the winery, the distillery and then the bistro. Yeah. And it's looking, you know, just looking at the website, it's it's you know, very Wisconsin built a tough room for the elements. It's beautiful. Yeah, exactly. And, you know, it's interesting because, you know, in 1993 when we did our first expansion, we rented a car because we we didn't to have a car that could take us all the way around Lake Michigan. We rented a car and we drove all the way around Lake Michigan and we stopped at many wineries. Schottel, Grand Traverse, Leelanau Peninsula, all the way down to San Julian. And it for us, it was pointless to go to California to visit winery because we're dealing with two feet of snow and inches of ice and it's winter from December 1st to March 1st. So, yeah, it has to we have to think of where do we put the snow? Where do. You know, the truck insulation, so the pipes don't freeze and also everything is inside. Everything is insulated. So from the outside, you don't realize how big it is inside with. We have 40 tanks that are fifty eight hundred gallons, you know. Thank you for listening. I'm Forrest calling this episode of The Best Five Minute Wine Podcast was produced by I his if you like the show, please tell your friends and pets and subscribe until next time or the one and ponder your next adventure.

00:05:45 3/26/2021

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