Now,after about 10 years,as an Oklahoma winery,we are moving forward to make the best wine possible from Oklahoma grapes. The perception of Oklahoma wine is only as good as the last wine tasted during the last trip to one of our 60 wineries. We have had wine makers and customers make comments about experiences with bad wines. I hope that someday there will be an independent effort to evaluate Oklahoma wines and post the comments on a blog or tweet. Some states have had a wine tweet-off. I would hope that such an effort would force some winemakers to be more diligent in their wine making efforts and if they are just bottling California wine under their label don’t sell it as Oklahoma wine. Someone needs to take this project on and help people realize that we can make world class wine from Oklahoma grapes.
Over the last couple of years Stableridge has developed long term partnerships with companies, bed and breakfasts,guest ranches, companies etc. Yesterday we finalized another partnership. These are dual promotion agreements. Initially we were contacted because these customers wanted to provide the best Oklahoma wines to their clients and customers. We have always believed that this relationship needs to works for both ways . We work to support our customers. Our call yesterday as a result from all our wine awards… Tomorrow we are bottling one of our most popular wines. Centennial is a blend of Muscat and Riesling. It brings out the best of both wines.
We had a great Spring Break week at the winery. A lot of people came in the tasting room and we were busy. On Wed. we had a nice couple from S.Africa that were traveling accross the U.S.. Sat. and Sun.we were closed due to the snow. Finally got some dependable vineyard help. I’m having him clean up the vineyard while I prune. Next week we will bottle the last of our whites (Pinot Grigio). We bottled almost 1000 Moscato last week.
Our staff was talking about the detrimental effects of daylight savings time . I could not understand the problem once you get past the hour sleep difference. The added daylight gives me the extra time I need in the vineyards…Today I remembered the negative side. Of all the things I really don’t care to do unloading 8′ tall pallets of wine bottles off the truck is at the top of the list. We are always the first stop for the driver. He is here around 7 a.m..Now it’s unloading,with the forklift, 8’tall pallets, in the dark.. and cold. I have not had my second cup of coffee yet.
Had another interesting experience last week. Most people realize that a big part of experiencing wine is the smell. Our staff does not wear anything that produces an odor. This includes certain laundry products that stay on the clothes. No candles in the tasting room etc. Had a lady,in the tasting room ,who had so much perfume on that we had to open all the doors after she left to air out the building before the next group arrived. Maybe our olfactory senses have become too sensitive ? Nope! Too much perfume…
Been reading some articles recently about field blended wines. Different grapes are grown together, picked and fermented . Many of the good European wines are blends. Different grapes have characteristics that add to the flavor of different wines (one for color,one for nose,flavor etc.).It just makes sense. It is exciting to taste a wine where everything comes together.
I’m going to try to be more regular in the Stableridge Winery posts. We have been busy. For the last couple of weeks. We have been calling on stores in Okla. City and Tulsa . Some are new liquor stores and others have carried our wines for years. We are seeing some Okla. wineries disappearing from the shelves. The stores want Oklahoma (grown/ made) wines and have cut back on out of state wines bottled in Oklahoma. Customers have become better educated in their wine choices…Working in the vineyards,cleaning coating decks. Back to work.
A Vintage Thank You
Wine is all about vintages; and our customers are very special vintages. My thoughts relate to something vintage. We were reminiscing about being an Oklahoma winery and I thought of the Starship, Enterprise dictum. These are the voyages of StableRidge Winery…“To boldly go where no man has gone before”.
Over the last couple of days we have had a chance to look back at 2009 and look at all of our events, our wines and most of all, our friends. We have gone where no Oklahoma winery has gone before. We have won more international awards; we are carried by all of the distributors in Oklahoma and are sold in stores and restaurants around the state. We have experienced an amazing amount of Route 66 traffic, many really great groups and car clubs. Being a rest stop for the MS Bike Run was an incredibly fun and great experience. All of the fairs and festivals turned out wonderful and we had fun with all of our corporate partners and their private label needs. There are numerous great memories in what was a fantastic year!
The memories that stand out, above all else, are with the people who walk through the front door or that we meet at fairs and festivals. We hope that most of our customers realize that we are about people first and great wine is second. Each person we meet adds to who we are.
To all of our new and old friends, thank you for making this journey with us. Have a blessed and prosperous new year and we look forward to seeing you again.
Don, Annetta, Martha and Erin
Many of our Tulsa area customers and friends have already seen the November article in the Tulsa People magazine. For the first time, in this prestigious magazine, Oklahoma wines were reviewed and StableRidge was chosen. The review was done by Randa Warren, Certified Master Sommelier and Certified Wine Educator. Considering there are only about 110 Master Sommeliers in the United States, this is a big deal for StableRidge.
The article is about 1/3 of a page in the November issue in the Food and Drink section. Randa Warren reviewed our Oklahoma Zinfandel and Oklahoma Viognier. This is the same Viognier that has won 4 International Awards so far in 2009. We knew both wines were good, but it was nice to have it confirmed by a real expert.
If you would like to read the Tulsa People article, go to http://www.tulsapeople-digital.com/tulsapeople/200911#pg112.
The last couple of months all of our thoughts were on grapes, grape growing and harvest. We now enter the time for fairs, festivals, wine dinners and other events. It began with the start of the State Fair (OKC). This week we will be at the Tulsa State Fair. There will be a festival in Duncan, Ardmore and Drumright in October. We will be in several events in many other communities as well. StableRidge is all over the state in stores and restaurants. With over 32 tons of Oklahoma Grapes this harvest, we are excited about some of the wines we are gong to have in 2010.