Wines To Pair With Thanksgiving

As you think about Thanksgiving and the December holidays, keep Benson Marketing Group’s portfolio top of mind – we have something for every scenario! 

Wines to pair with that Thanksgiving feast:

Zocker Grüner Veltliner SRP: $20
An alternative white wine choice, the grape hails from Austria but is thriving in California’s Edna Valley. It is extremely food-friendly, making it easy to pair with all parts of this complex meal.

Bistro Pinot Noir Vin de France SRP: $11.99
It is a tradition in France to meet at the local bistro to relax, socialize, drink wine and dine in a casual friendly setting. Barton & Guestier’s Bistro Pinot Noir channels that energy and makes a perfect partner for a large gathering around a meal.

Hahn SLH Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands  SRP: $30
Pioneers in the Santa Lucia Highlands, Hahn Family Wines was one of the first wineries in the region to have all its estate vineyards certified under the rigorous Sustainability in Practice (SIP) Program, a strict third-party program that sets the gold standard for sustainable certification. Today it is a 100% solar- powered winery. The vineyards used for sourcing the Pinot Noir grapes for this wine experience a long and dry growing season that results in wines with remarkable depth, complexity and ripe fruit flavors.  Interested in Chardonnay from SLH? We recommend Hahn SLH Chardonnay SRP: $25.   

Made in the USA, Thanksgiving is a uniquely American holiday after all:

Biltmore Reserve Rosé North Carolina SRP: $25
Drink up – Vanderbilt style! Yes, North Carolina can produce some great wines. Grapes for this wine are grown on the historic estate in Asheville, where George Vanderbilt once hosted some of the best parties and provided top-notch hospitality. And of course, Rosé is always in season.

Balletto Russian River Valley Estate Pinot Noir SRP: $29
The Balletto’s are a family of vegetable farmers turned wine grape growers who make site-specific wines from their estate vineyards. Winemaker Anthony Beckman has spent 11 years getting to know the family’s vineyards (and has even planned how some plots are planted). This Russian River Valley Estate Pinot Noir exhibits everything you would expect from a serious point. It combines full and captivating aromatics with a delicate texture that defines the Balletto style of Pinot Noir.

Smith & Hook Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Paso Robles SRP: $45
Smith & Hook wines embrace the unfettered spirit of the Central Coast, layering together fruit from five distinct Central Coast appellations: Arroyo Seco, Paso Robles, San Antonio Valley, Hames Valley & San Benito County. The palate is youthful and vibrant, balancing on the lighter side of blue and black fruits and berries. With time, the nose on this wine continues to evolve, revealing plum, leather and tobacco accents. 

Stay tuned! We have a series of recommendations coming out for the holidays.

Redwood Empire Whiskey and Benson “Drink Among Giants”

We are thrilled to add Redwood Empire Whiskey, part of Purple Brands, to our client roster. Redwood Empire Whiskeys age slowly and gently in the cool evenings, foggy mornings, and temperate climate of the region that inspired the brand’s name.  The Redwood Empire defines a string of ancient Redwood groves that stretch from north of San Francisco to the Oregon border along the steep coastal hills marked by thick fog –  the preferred habitat of majestic Coastal Redwoods, some of which are 2,000 years old and 350 feet tall. The Sonoma County, California distillery names each expression for one of these ancient trees: Pipe Dream (bourbon), Emerald Giant (rye), and Lost Monarch (a blend of straight whiskeys). Each bottle includes the GPS coordinates of the tree that inspired that whiskey, and its tagline, Drink Among Giants.

The distillery boasts California’s largest inventory of ageing whiskeys, and all Redwood Empire Whiskey is blended onsite in Sonoma County. A Bottled in Bond expression will be released fall 2021.

Redwood Empire Whiskey’s partnership with the NGO, Trees for the Future, has resulted in 225,000+ trees planted. The distillery donates money to plant one tree for each bottle sold.

Benson’s campaign will include raising awareness of the fast-growing brand in both consumer and trade media, as well as messaging strategy.

Keep These Wineries on Your Radar or Bucket List

California


Starting from San Francisco? Here are some spots to add to your itinerary…

Balletto Vineyards – Just a two-hour drive from San Francisco is Balletto Vineyards, owned by John Balletto and his wife, Terri. A family of vegetable farmers turned wine grape growers, the Balletto team makes site-specific wines from their estate vineyards. Their vineyards, located in the Russian River Valley, span 700 acres of which only 10% of the top grapes are used and bottled under the Balletto label. Visitors able to enjoy the estate-grown wines out on the patio overlooking the property. Reservations are required with daily tastings at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
Address: 5700 Occidental Rd, Santa Rosa, CA 95401

Bread & Butter Tasting Room – Opening Summer 2021, this beautiful, relaxed setting in Napa Valley, was designed to feel like an elegant and comfortable home. Visitors will have the opportunity to experience the newly released Napa Valley wines from winemaker Linda Trotta.
Address:  3105 Silverado Trail, Napa, California

If a road trip down to Big Sur is on your list, don’t miss…

Hahn Family Wines – Pioneers in the Santa Lucia Highlands, celebrating 40 years of winemaking, Hahn Family Wines is an independent, family-owned wine company. Their wines comprise of six estate vineyards in the Santa Lucia Highlands and Arroyo Seco appellations. Travelers can visit the estate or the tasting room in Carmel, which is located just blocks away from Carmel Beach and the Pebble Beach Golf Course. A visit to the estate includes a tasting with panoramic views of the vineyards. You can’t go wrong with either choice! Reservations are recommended and can be made online.
Estate Address: 37700 Foothill Rd, Soledad, CA 93960
Carmel Address: Ocean Avenue and Mission Street on the Ground Floor, Carmel-By-The-Sea, CA 93923

Just an hour drive south…

SLO and Paso Robles – An up-and-coming wine destination that has caught steam in recent years, Paso Robles is unlike any other and should not be compared with other California spots. People gravitate to the area because the locals are laidback and there’s a strong sense of community. It’s the gift that keeps giving with its diversity in varietal expression – you can go to two vineyards right across from each other growing the same grape and have two completely different experiences. Visit Baileyana Winery in SLO and Chronic Cellars in Paso while you’re there.
Baileyana Address: 5828 Orcutt Rd, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Chronic Cellars Address: 2020 Nacimiento Lake Dr, Paso Robles, CA 93446

Heading East – North Carolina

 

Biltmore Winery – A destination on its own, Biltmore Winery is nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Asheville, North Carolina adjacent to the famous Biltmore House built by George Vanderbilt in 1895. The estate encompasses 8,000 acres of land with about 45 of those acres dedicated to vineyards that grow vitis vinifera grapes. Biltmore produces a storied portfolio of award-winning wines using these grapes as well as from partners in North Carolina and other premium growing regions across America. Each wine has a source, an intention and a story behind it, much like the estate itself. A visit to the winery is included with the purchase of a ticket and a reservation is required. Tip: making a reservation early in the day is recommended as spaces fill quickly. Visitors have several options to choose from for accommodations with the most popular being the 4-star luxury, The Inn, and there are plenty of activities for those staying on the grounds.
Address: 1 Lodge St, Asheville, NC 28803

For the Bucket List – International

France

Chateau Magnol – You can’t think about wine travel without including France. Bordeaux is home to Chateau Magnol, the flagship property of Barton & Guestier, the oldest wine house of Bordeaux with three centuries of winemaking experience. It offers intimate accommodations to small groups of travelers where the on-site staff sets up special meals with tastings from its private cellar. The grounds are impeccably kept and follow a variety of sustainability measures that are reflected in the way they make their wines and have earned them the ‘High Environmental Value’ designation.

South Africa

Graham Beck – An easy, scenic drive from Cape Town, Graham Beck is located in the Robertson region with a tasting room that is the highlight of any trip to South Africa wine country. It boasts panoramic views of the vineyard, an impressive art collection and, of course, an equally as impressive tasting experience of its Cap Classique (traditional method) sparkling wines. Graham Beck is lauded among the world’s best sparkling wine values, and their Brut has even been served at the inauguration and nomination celebrations of Nelson Mandela and Barack Obama. 

Steenberg Vineyards – Near Cape Town, South Africa, the Constantia region is home to some of the best Sauvignon Blanc vineyards in the world. Located there is Steenberg Vineyards, a 4-star resort set on a sprawling vineyard with a spa, multiple restaurants, and access to a championship golf course. It’s the oldest registered farm in South Africa, dating to 1682 and the first owner, Catharina Ras, was one of the most remarkable figures to ever settle in the Cape.

Lance Winters, Dave Smith at St. George Spirits distillery

New Client: St. George Spirits

We are proud to start working with St. George Spirits, America’s original craft distillery — a team recognized for “gleefully shunning the spirits world’s conventions” (Esquire).

In 1982, founder Jörg Rupf began making unaged fruit brandy on a single, 65-gallon Holstein pot still in a wood shed he built by hand—modest beginnings that brought Old World distilling methodologies to the New World and “inspired the American artisan distillation movement.” (NPR)

Though Rupf retired in 2010, St. George Spirits continues to be owner-operated, artfully producing a range of imaginative single malt whiskey, absinthe, and several gins, vodkas, brandies, and liqueurs. Rupf’s reverence for extraordinary raw materials and exacting standards continue to inspire master distiller Lance Winters and head distiller and “President of Vices,” Dave Smith (both pictured), and the rest of a talented, dynamic team. The distillery is located in a former WWII aircraft hangar in Alameda, California.

At Benson, our goal will be to simply, clearly convey the passion, intentionality and skill that goes into these extraordinary spirits. For a 4-minute introduction to St. George Spirits narrated by Lance and Dave, watch this video produced for Whole Foods. (Photo credit: Alex Zyuzikov.)

Benson Included in Meininger’s “Power List”

Last month we were proud to be included in “The Top PR Companies for Alcohol Beverage Brands” by Beverage Trade Network for “stellar work that has attracted the right clients…” (We agree!)

This month, we received a similar accolade from Europe’s Meininger’s Wine Business International, making their top 10 “Power List” of U.S. wine and spirits agencies. As author Roger Voss pointed out, “Nowadays, there is no business without good marketing.”

Of course, we would be expected to agree. But we interpret Roger’s quotation as a challenge to continue innovating how we communicate — with clarity, style and integrity – what is truly fascinating about the people and products we represent.

Ok, back to work!

Bye Bye ABC: Explore Chardonnay’s Many Expressions

It’s no secret that Chardonnay is one of the most widely planted grape varieties in the world. A truly versatile, green-skinned varietal that’s capable of great expression, Chardonnay is growing in pretty much every wine-producing region. The public has had its share in the rise (and fall) in popularity of the grape, as winemakers around the world have turned their hand to adapting it to a broad array of styles.

What better way to mark both #NationalWineDay (May 25) and #ChardonnayDay (May 27) in 2021 than with a celebration of Chardonnay based wines. Nielsen data show it is the second most popular wine in U.S. by sales volume, after Cabernet Sauvignon. (52 weeks ending 11/28/20).  We conducted another in our series, BensonLive Presents, called “Cheers to Chardonnay,” which aired May 25, 2021; you can view the video on our YouTube channel.

Writers: if you’re challenged to find new and interesting angles, Benson’s client roster has a bevy of Chardonnays – from unoaked to oaky still wines, bubbly and attention-grabbing packaging and campaigns, there’s an array of Chardonnay in our court to choose from. Below are just a select few to tickle your palate!

No Oak Bomb Here

Balletto Vineyards Teresa’s Unoaked Chardonnay – Russian River Valley, California – SRP $20 – At Balletto Vineyards, one of the few family-owned estate wineries in the Russian River Valley wine region of Sonoma County, all the wines are grown on sustainably farmed estate vineyards and reflect the Balletto family’s passion for the land. This one continues to define California’s Unoaked Chardonnay category. Crisp and vibrant, yet amazingly luscious, it showcases how chardonnay does not need flashy oak or malolactic fermentation to be distinct and delicious. It’s mouthwatering with refreshing acidity that contrasts its surprisingly robust and weighted mid-palate.

Bubble Up!

Graham Beck Brut Blanc de Blanc – Robertson, Western Cape, South Africa – SRP $30 – This 100% Chardonnay Méthode Cap Classique wine (the South African style of méthode champenoise). Only the cuvée juice (premium quality) was used for fermentation from the best selection of grapes in Robertson. It is one of South Africa’s most awarded sparkling wines and showcases what the “Graham Beck way” truly means.

Hahn Winery Selection Blanc de Blanc – Santa Lucia Highlands, California – SRP $50 – Limited production. Carefully sourced from of select vineyards in Monterey County, this sparkling wine is crafted from 100% Chardonnay, picked in early August when sugars were low and acid beautiful. Done in a Méthode Champenoise, this wine spent 30 months in the bottle. Generous aromas of strawberry and cranberry are complimented by fresh floral notes. The palate opens with flavors of peach, cantaloupe, and strawberry, finishing with hints of honey, light minerality and beautiful acidity.

Packaging & Inspirational Campaigns

Bread & Butter Chardonnay – California – SRP $15.99 – Bread & Butter believes good things shouldn’t be complicated, and neither should you! They launched a 360-degree campaign dubbed, “Don’t Overthink It” essentially giving wine lovers the freedom to simply enjoy. Made for beautiful spring afternoons, Bread & Butter Chardonnay is a simple and easy drinking wine. Delicately balancing flavors of green apple and citrus, this Chardonnay is made to be enjoyed year-round.

Hahn Appellation Series Chardonnay – Arroyo Seco, California – SRP $17.99 – The Hahn Appellation Series, a new addition to Hahn Family Wines, is replete with gorgeous dark teal and copper packaging and screw cap. Grapes for this wine are sourced from Ste. Nicholas vineyard, one of the family’s six certified sustainable estate vineyards, in Arroyo Seco, one of the smallest AVAs in California. Bright light gold in appearance with aromas of tropical fruit, vanilla, honey and caramel. On the palate, vibrant flavors of pineapple, lemon, apricot and gentle notes of honey, followed by nuanced toasty spice on the finish.

True Myth Chardonnay – Edna Valley, California – SRP $18 – With inspiration drawn from Mother Nature, this wine honors the grace and beauty of the vineyard. Cool climate Edna Valley is an ideal environment for Chardonnay, producing a rich and creamy wine bursting with tropical fruit flavors, making it a great wine for the spring. BONUS: Stay Tuned for limited-edition Ryder Cup x True Myth Edna Valley Chardonnay summer 2021; perfect gift idea for the golf enthusiast in your life!

Everyday Occasions Under $20

Highlands 41 Chardonnay – Monterey, California – SRP $15 – Artfully crafted by fourth generation winemaker Anthony Riboli, Highlands 41 Chardonnay is grown from sustainably farmed estate vineyards in the heart of Monterey and produced at the Riboli Family sustainably certified winery in Paso Robles. It greets the nose with an array of ripe fruit aromas, including citrus, guava, and orange peel. A touch of spicy oak adds complexity. Balanced acidity creates structure and a long, complex finish. This brand captures the energy and excitement of visiting somewhere new, meeting new people, and exploring new adventures.

Reata Sonoma Coast Chardonnay – Sonoma Coast, California – SRP $20 – Created with grapes from Russian River Valley and Los Carneros during a perfect and extended growing season, this Chardonnay has naturally high acidity with fresh fruit aromatics and flavors of apple blossom, honeydew melon, guava and grapefruit zest. The creamy texture and rich flavors of toasted oak are framed by its bright acidity that lifts the fruit and leaves a lingering finish. Made by veteran winemaker Linda Trotta with more than 35 years of winemaking experience.

Step It Up $20+

Baileyana Firepeak Chardonnay – Edna Valley, California – SRP $28 – Grown in the coolest climate region in California, which also enjoys an extended growing season, this Chardonnay has intense and complex varietal flavors. It’s smooth and balanced with refined acid structure and a creamy finish. Named after the Acacia Baileyana plant that is beloved for its yellow flowers and is synonymous with the traverse mountain ranges of California, including Edna Valley, the beautiful label design pays homage to this namesake.

Balletto Vineyards Chardonnay – Russian River Valley, California – SRP $29 – Made by Balletto Vineyards, one of the few family-owned estate wineries in the Russian River Valley wine region of Sonoma County, the texture and balance are spot on, making it one of those wines that draws you in for another sip. Both complex and elegant, showing its cool-climate heritage with concentrated flavors and a dark and lasting texture that has perfectly bright citrus tones for balance. It opens with warm spices, ripe pear and lemon aromas. New oak has been used sparingly to enhance the wine with subtle toasted tones, rather than dominate the aromatic profile. This is serious Chardonnay with depth, structure and finesse.

Biltmore Reserve Chardonnay – North Carolina – SRP $25 – Bearing the North Carolina designation, the Biltmore Reserve Chardonnay was crafted with grapes from the estate vineyard. In this way the wine honors the legacy of self-sufficiency that George Vanderbilt originally envisioned for his estate. Channel a bit of Vanderbilt level hospitality with this Chardonnay.

Hahn SLH Chardonnay – Santa Lucia Highlands, California – SRP $25 – Great Value, Tastes Expensive. The ‘SLH’ label is the flagship of Hahn Family Wines, celebrating their 40th anniversary. This is a true ‘gem’ from the small, but mighty Santa Lucia Highlands. This wine greets the nose with citrus and stone fruits, followed with hints of ripe tropical fruit and vanilla. On the palate, this wine is full-bodied with a viscous round mouthfeel, balanced acidity and flavors of lemon, vanilla and delicate butter notes that lead to an elegant long finish.

Lucienne Chardonnay, Lone Oak Vineyard – Santa Lucia Highlands, California – SRP $40 – Family Owned. Estate Grown. Limited production. This 90+ rated wine from Hahn Family Wine’s 146-acre certified sustainable Lone Oak Vineyard sits at the northern end of the Santa Lucia Highlands where it is cooled by ocean breezes from the Monterey Bay. This 2018 Chardonnay is beautifully balanced with a profile that is sophisticated and nuanced. Aromas of fruity floral lychee, honeysuckle and ripe citrus with a hint of vanilla. The palate is feminine and dry in character, with delicate and elegant notes of silky citrus, hints of toasty oak and medium acidic finish.

Crushing it at Napa Wine Co.

Some sites just attract history.   ​

​At the intersection of Hwy 29 and Oakville Crossroad lies Napa Wine Co., California Bonded Winery #9. Wine has been produced at this site since the 1880s.

More recently (1993), Napa Wine Co. has been an incubator for many famous winemakers and wines. Benson is proud to launch a trial digital campaign for the company, bringing greater attention to their talented team, production capabilities, and “leave it better than you found it” approach to business.  Napa Wine Co. has supported the wine industry in myriad ways, including a tuition reimbursement program for employees and a new Grower Program helping crush and ferment grapes rejected by buyers for fear of smoke taint. 

Learn more at Napa Wine Co. by following their Facebook and LinkedIn pages.

Rosé vs. Seltzer: Let the Summer Games Begin!

‘Rosé Season’ is upon us again and at Benson we’re watching a few trends: 1) the popularity of the rosé category remains unflagging with wine lovers but, 2) seltzer and other adult beverages are taking a share of the consumer’s wallet.

Writers: if you’re challenged to find new and interesting angles, Benson’s client roster has several Rosé options to offer: from stories on unique packaging, to attention grabbing marketing campaigns, as well as some off the beaten path vineyard locales and wine styles.

Stylish Every Day

Bread & Butter California Rosé – SRP $16 – Choosing a delicious wine, especially rosé, should be an easy choice to make. Don’t overthink it and grab this bottle from the fastest growing wine brand in the $12-$15 category – Bread & Butter. Leave the complexity to the winemaking team at Bread & Butter and simply enjoy the layered flavors of strawberry and melon and a balanced acidity that makes this pink wonder such a versatile wine.

Hahn California Rosé – SRP $15 – This rosé comes from pinot noir grapes grown on the Arroyo Seco appellation in Monterey County where it was sustainably grown on a SIP-certified vineyard. The elegant beauty is pale salmon in color with soft aromas of red fruits, watermelon and grapefruit. This version is as accessible on the palate as it is on the wallet!

Say ‘Oui’ to Côtes de Provence

Barton & Guestier Côtes de Provence Tourmaline Rosé – SRP $20 – A stylish new addition to the Provence rosé category, the punt at the bottom of this bottle is designed to resemble the famous pink gemstone after which this wine is named. Grenache, Syrah and Cinsault combine to provide a true-to-type Provençal experience in the bottle. Oui oui!

Can Do!

Tangent Edna Valley Rosé (in 375ml can) – SRP $6-8/375ml – Pack this gorgeous can of rosé from California’s Edna Valley for your next excursion and you’ll be the host or hostess with the most-est. Easy to chill, easy to open, and definitely easy to enjoy! But always enjoy this one responsibly! Just a humble reminder that 375ml cans are equivalent to half a standard bottle; overindulging is always a ‘can don’t.’

Experience North Carolina Hospitality

Biltmore Reserve Rosé, North Carolina – SRP $24 – Drink up – Vanderbilt style! Yes, North Carolina can produce some great wines. Grapes for this wine are grown on the eponymous estate in Asheville, where George Vanderbilt once hosted some of the best parties and provided top-notch hospitality. Ask us to put you in touch with winemaker Sharon Fenchak to see how she does it.

Pinot’s Other Favorite Expression

Baileyana Edna Valley Rosé of Pinot Noir – SRP $24 – Just five miles from the Pacific Ocean, the Edna Valley produces some of the freshest rosé wines due to its cool climate and extended growing season. This rosé produced on a SIP-certified vineyard is bursting with watermelon and strawberry aromas making it perfect year-round. Did we mention its gorgeous photo-ready bottle? Hello, wedding season!

Balletto Russian River Valley Rosé of Pinot Noir – SRP $20 – Made with estate-grown grapes from Russian River Valley, the Balletto Rosé of Pinot Noir is a testament to growing rosé ‘with intention,’ says winemaker Anthony Beckman. Anthony and owner John Balletto grow the pinot noir grapes for this rosé with the express use for their Rosé of Pinot Noir.

POP! Rosé Sparkles, Too!

Graham Beck Brut Rosé NV – SRP $20 – Hailing from South Africa’s Western Cape, this Méthode Cap Classique Brut Rosé embodies style and elegance meant to be enjoyed during moments that matter. American wine lovers have really fallen in love with this wine.

Veuve du Vernay Ice Rosé – SRP $15 – Go ahead, you know you want to add a bit of ice. This delightful sparkler is MADE to be enjoyed over ice. Veuve du Vernay’s Ice Rosé is slightly sweet, but not too sweet with floral aromas. It’s the easiest ‘cocktail’ ever for serving poolside or by the beach, so grab a wide-brimmed hat, some glasses and pour this during your next getaway or staycation.

Balletto Brut Rosé 2015 – SRP $42 – This sparkling Brut Rosé comes from Balletto Vineyards, one of the few family-owned estate wineries in the Russian River Valley wine region of Sonoma County. It’s delicate, pretty, and delicious – the soft, coral-hued color sets the stage, and the tiny, persistent bubbles confirm that this is a serious sparkler. The aromas are integrated and full with a dollop of cherry-strawberry that highlights the core mineral focus. Perfect for creating that coral focused Instagram page.

Benson Named a Top Marketing Agency

Beverage Trade Network’s blog post this month titled “Top PR Companies for Alcohol Beverage Brands,” included Benson along with our peers.

While multi-year client engagements are perhaps the best indicator of client satisfaction — we are proud that our average is 4+ years — it’s also affirming to receive this third party endorsement.

More importantly, their call for wine and spirits brand to increase marketing spending is timely.

The post stated: “The wine and drinks industry has an overabundance of brands in the market and there is an acute need for brands to differentiate themselves with PR and marketing.” It went on to say, “In times of COVID when traveling has become tight, budgets even tighter, and flashy events cannot be held, digital marketing is a great way for your brand to reach a target market. With most human eyes glued to screens small and large, it has become more important than ever to create an active digital marketing strategy. We take a closer look and bring you the most important PR companies in America for your beverage brands.”

The post also said about Benson, “stellar work that has attracted the right clients.” We agree! Our goal has never been about being the largest, but about being the best.

Sauvignon Blanc: Through the Eyes of Winemakers

Sauvignon Blanc is having a moment.

In July 2020, Nielsen reported it was the fastest growing wine type with a 38 percent increase in sales. Even before the pandemic, volume was up 8.9 percent in 2019. This can be attributed to a variety of factors like how the grape grows very well in multiple regions, its accessibility around the world, and its range of price points for buyers.

Benson’s press webinar was held April 22, 2021. To review materials, view this Dropbox link.  Or, you can view the webinar on YouTube here.

Take it from these winemakers who have mastered the grape’s potential and consistently create standout bottles.

Anthony Beckman, Balletto Vineyards 

Working with 850 acres of estate vineyards at Balletto Vineyards, Anthony Beckman is able to create unique wines specific to the Russian River Valley area. Working there since 2007, he has contributed to much of the vineyard’s success and continues to do so with his approach to winemaking. His philosophy is to let the vineyards authentically speak through the wines to make the statement, “this wine can only be grown and made here.”  

Let the vineyard speak to you through this Sauvignon Blanc: Sauvignon Blanc, Sonoma County, California – SRP $20 

Elunda Basson

Elunda Basson, Steenberg Vineyards 

An accomplished winemaker and respected specialist in South Africa with more than 20 years of experience, Elunda Basson took her talent to Steenberg Vineyards as Cellarmaster in 2019. The vineyard produces some of the best Sauvignon Blanc wines in the country due to its location in the Constantia area near the ocean and its storied winemaking history dating back to 1682. Under Elunda’s expertise, the wines exhibit freshness, elegance, and finesse.  

Enjoy this unique twist on Sauvignon Blanc: Sparkling Sauvignon Blanc, Constantia, South Africa – SRP $18 

Juan Jo VerdinaJuan Jo Verdina, Hahn Family Wines 

Joining Hahn Family Wines in 2002 as part of the cellar team and working toward becoming Winemaker, Juan Jo Verdina knows the wine production of the estate inside and out. He heads the Hahn and Boneshaker brands with Hahn’s portfolio including six varietals and Boneshaker’s focusing on a robust Lodi Zinfandel from 40-year-old vines. The Hahn Winery Selection Sauvignon Blanc is sourced from a vineyard in Monterey County that experienced a mild vintage resulting in a naturally balanced acidity.  

Taste the Hahn experience with its Sauvignon Banc: Hahn Winery Selection Sauvignon Blanc, Monterey, California​​ – SRP $32 

Rob Takigawa, Tangent Wines  

With 20 years of experience working with Tangent, Rob Takigawa worked his way up starting as a Tank Room Manager, then Assistant winemaker, Winemaker and now, Director of Winemaking. He has grown further knowledge with each passing vintage, learning how to capture Edna Valley’s uniqueness to the rest of California’s growing regions. The Sauvignon Blanc is harvested at different levels to achieve the ideal finish and sourced from a vineyard with a Sustainability in Practice Vineyard Certification. 

Try a uniquely Edna Valley Sauvignon Blanc: Tangent Sauvignon Blanc, Edna Valley, California​ – SRP $17 

 

Linda Trotta, North Coast Winemaker, WX Brands

With 30+ years in the industry, Linda has worked harvests around the world including Italy, South Africa and Chile. One thing she is most proud of in her career is that in her leadership role(s), she mentored and developed talent who have gone on to make their own marks of excellence in winemaking and viticulture. Her Bread & Butter Sauvignon Blanc shines with bright aromas of lemon zest and a hint of tropical fruit. The Silver Spur Lake County Sauvignon Blanc is made from sustainably grown Sauvignon Musque Clone, known for its intensity and array of aromas and notes associated with expressive and fine Sauvignon Blanc.

Silver Spur Lake County Sauvignon Blanc 2019, SRP $18 Wine.com

Bread & Butter Sauvignon Blanc 2019, SRP $16.99 Online shop