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Visiting Wineries – Saturday July 26th, 2008

July 26, 2008

I would like to thank Harvey and Alma of Erie Shores for their fine hospitality las Sunday. It was their annual Open House and as usual the weather co-operated and we had a great time.

The food was excellent (roast pig…I bet it was local)) and was even better than last year. Congratulations on a job well done.

How does one get invited to these events. Simple….go to the winery and sign their guest book. You will get on their emailing list and be kept abreast of what is happening. Buy some wine and become friends. What you will get back will be amazing. I have learned so much about wine….taken into the vineyard, eaten wine grapes (not what you would think…they aren’t eating grapes), and getting barrel tastings… really cool.

So when you venture out to a vineyard, you should remember some basic rules.

1)the tasting bar is not a bar. It allows you to try the product so that you can buy what you like. Please respect the server and don’t act like the tool from Sideways who says “hit me”. The tastings are just that. I have witnessed someone doing this heinous act and the server was not impressed. You are there to sample the product, not get drunk

2) If you go in a group call ahead. Many wineries are very small and need warning to prepare. You can wipe out their glassware and really overwhelm them. Basically any more than 6 people requires warning. A bonus for a call is that they may do something special for our group or give you our own wine guide.

3)Remember that many wineries are at their home. Treat the area with respect. Drive slow, park nicely and don’t run over the family pet or child.

4)Buy some wine…they like that

5)Don’t act like you are an expert. Don’t claim to know the winemaker when you don’t. You may be talking to the winemaker….you will look like a tool.

6)Forget the “I only drink wines from Napa” mentality….the local wineries are very proud of their product and “may let you have it” if you give them attitude…..try something new, talk to them with respect. Most of the people I get samples from are very knowledgeable, know more about wine than me, probably own the place and aren’t a $10/hr clerk. 

7)Have fun!!!

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