University of Pinot 2019

2019 University of Pinot Courses

Our guests consistently ask for a wide variety of informative seminars and tastings. We are pleased to once again offer eight different classes at the 2019 IPNC. All classes are held in the early afternoon following lunch and are part of the program for all Full Weekend guests.
Click the button below to register for your top two picks:
(NOTE: You will only have time to attend one seminar.)
University of Pinot enrollment CLOSES June 30th.

If you have not enrolled by the deadline, you will be randomly placed in a seminar.

PINOT NOIR & RIESLING

Why are so many producers around the world growing Riesling alongside Pinot noir? In Burgundy, Chardonnay is well-established as Pinot noir’s sister grape. However, there is a recurring group of popular and prolific contenders who produce Riesling in the same terroir as their Pinot noir. In this class, guests explore one of Pinot noir’s most common, yet unexpected, non-Chardonnay counterparts. Try examples and hear from winemakers from around the world about why Riesling and Pinot noir should grow side-by-side.
JOHN WINTHROP HAEGER, AUTHOR (Palo Alto, CA)
Moderator

John Winthrop Haeger, has written about wine since 1986. His articles have appeared in Connoisseur, Wine & Spirits, Sunset and Saveur, in the San Francisco Chronicle, in Singapore-based Appetite, and in Japan’s Wine Kingdom. His first book about wine, North American Pinot Noir (University of California Press, 2004) was named Louis Roederer International Wine Book of the Year for 2005. The second, Pacific Pinot Noir: A Comprehensive Winery Guide for Consumers and Connoisseurs, was published in September 2008. Riesling Rediscovered: Bold, Bright, and Dry, was published in March 2016.

ROSS COBB, COBB WINES (Occidental, CA)
Panelist

Since 2001, two generations of the Cobb family have established Cobb Wines as one of North America’s most revered small wineries, recognized for the elegance and nuanced sophistication of its limited-production wines. Focused on single-vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot noirs, and small amounts of Chardonnay and Riesling, Cobb Wines combines the winegrowing expertise of David Cobb with the winemaking skill of his son, Ross, who Jay McInerney hailed as one of “the rock stars of Pinot noir” in The Wall Street Journal and by Linda Murphy in Decanter as “the future of California Pinot noir.” Working with the finest vineyards, Cobb Wines has earned acclaim for making some of the New World’s most stirring Pinot noirs – complex, aromatic, lower-alcohol wines that have been called a “revelation” by Rusty Gaffney in PinotFile. In both 2015 and 2016, Wine & Spirits selected Cobb Wines as one of the world’s “Top 100 Wineries.”

JOACHIM HEGER, WEINGUT DR. HEGER (Ihringen am Kaiserstuhl, GERMANY)
Panelist

Just a few miles from the French border, in Germany’s southernmost region of Baden, Joachim Heger farms the extraordinary grand crus (Grosses Gewächs) of Ihringer Winklerberg and Achkarrer Schlossberg. Joachim Heger’s grandfather, Dr. Max Heger, was a country doctor in Ihringen. He established Dr. Heger estate in 1935 and bought vineyards in the “Ihringer Winklerberg” and the “Achkarrer Schlossberg”, which are recognized as the best sites in the “Kaiserstuhl”.On the steep slopes of the volcanic Kaiserstuhl, Joachim gives voice to unique, delicious, age worthy expressions of Pinot noir (spätburgunder). For close to 40 vintages, his work has revolutionized the way we can interpret the potential of this ancient wine region. Burgundian varieties thrive here, beneficiaries of a startlingly warm climate, where sun-baked volcanic hills are crowned with wild cacti.  Joachim made a name for himself and for Baden with Pinot noir, but he also embraces classic Germanic varieties, such as Riesling and Silvaner, by allowing each to work its magic on the unique volcanic and loess soils. The results are supremely fresh, energetic wines of unmistakable depth and character.

CLAIRE JARREAU, BROOKS (Amity, OR)
Panelist

Brooks, a biodynamic winery located in Amity, Oregon, is the living legacy of Jimi Brooks, a visionary Portland native who came to wine through his passion for history and philosophy. Jimi devoted his life to holistic farming and winemaking in the Willamette Valley, and his excitement for the Willamette Valley terroir lives on through Brooks wines. Brooks is renowned for its Riesling and Pinot noir and is leading the way in debunking the common perception of aromatic white wines. Brooks sources grapes from a variety of vineyards and microclimates from across the region, which bring an inimitable taste to each bottle. Each thoughtfully made wine, such as the Ara Riesling or Rastaban Pinot noir, tells a distinct story of the winery’s land and history. The winery was named as one of five “Must Visit Wineries” by USA Today and has received perennial praise from Wine EnthusiastSunset Magazine, and The New York Times, among others. Brooks is a Certified B Corporation and a partner with 1% for the Planet.

MICHEL MALAT, WEINGUT MALAT (Plat, AUSTRIA)
Panelist

The Malat Winery, located on the south bank of the Danube River in the Kremstal district of Austria, has been producing exceptional wines since 1722.  Ninth generation winemaker Michael has continued this tradition, taking over the fifty hectare estate from his pioneering father Gerald in 2008.  Michael studied horticulture in Vienna and developed his mastery of viticulture internationally. Located in Palt, the Malat Estate borders the famous Wachau wine-growing region on the west and stands on the historic geographical hillside Gottweiger Berg. Benefitting from a microclimate regulated by the Danube River, with hot days and cool nights, Malat’s wines show a singular spiciness. Vineyard sites are hand-worked, with organic and sustainable practices integral to the winemaking process. A modern boutique hotel opened in 2012, offering guest rooms and dining situated directly upon the beautiful vineyards of this historic and prestigious estate.

MARIE ZUSSLIN, DOMAINE VALENTIN ZUSSLIN (Orschwihr, FRANCE)
Panelist

In 1691 Domaine Valentin Zusslin was founded in the southern part of the Alsace region. Since 2000 the 13thgeneration, brother and sister, Marie and Jean-Paul Zusslin have co-managed the domaine. The climate – warm, sunny, and dry – ensures slow, extended ripening of the grapes that in turn favours the development of extremely elegant aromas in the finished wine. The estate owns vines in Bollenberg, Pfingstberg (a Grand Cru), and a single vineyard monopole Clos Liebenberg. The domaine was certified biodynamic by Demeter France in 1997. These practices have imbued the whole vineyard with a huge development of biodiversity. The harvest is done exclusively by hand, selecting only well-matured fruit. The cellar work is minimalist with no interference in the natural process of the fermentation. The cuvées are aged on the fine yeast lees in oak Alsatian foudres and oak barrels for the red wine.

CHILEAN PINOT NOIR

Winemakers Tabali, Ritual and Casa Marin lead a tasting exploration of myriad distinctive terroirs from across the Western Coast of South America. Guests will have the chance to learn about the unique soil compositions and coastal influences that characterize Chilean Pinot. Explore the culture and climate of Chile with some of the country’s most dedicated and influential viticulturalists.
SARA SCHNEIDER, ROBB REPORT (San Francisco, CA)
Moderator

Sara Schneider was Sunset Magazine’s first Wine Editor. There, she developed and launched the Sunset International Wine Competition as well as the Sunset Wine Club. She co-authored the book California Wine Country: A Sunset Field Guide and has also been published in Cooking Light, Coastal Living, and Real Simple.com. Sara has been nominated twice for James Beard Foundation Journalism Awards and was awarded the Academy of Wine Communication’s Certificate for Excellence in Wine Writing. She has judged numerous wine competitions, including the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles international competition. She now writes for the Robb Report.

SOFIA ARAYA, RITUAL (Casablanca, CHILE)
Panelist

Ritual’s organic estate is situated in the extreme eastern end of Chile’s Casablanca Valley, set against the sweeping beauty of the coastal range and heavily influenced by the cooling effects of the Pacific Ocean and Humboldt Current. Vineyards are surrounded by 6000 acres of native forest, creating a balanced, biodiverse landscape for healthy vines to thrive alongside natural wildlife corridors and native vegetation. The grapes are hand-harvested in small batches at first light in the cool morning and carefully double-sorted. Whole berries are added to open-top tanks with hand punch-downs during fermentation. Wines are basket pressed, and only native yeasts are used obtaining a natural balance and greater purity. During university, Sofía Araya worked as a winemaker at Casa Lapostolle, and then at Luis Felipe Edwards for four years. In 2009 she was offered the assistant winemaking job at Viñedos Veramonte, which is the parent company for Ritual wine. She now oversees the production of Veramonte, Primus, and Ritual wines.

FELIPE MARÍN, CASA MARÍN (Cartagena, CHILE)
Panelist

Nothing describes this winery better than the story of a woman, María Luz Marín, who persevered to create fine and exclusive wines. In 2000, against advice from colleagues and experts, she decided to establish her winery in Lo Abarca, a small town in the San Antonio Valley. Despite warnings about problems with location, the cool climate, and people’s disbelief, she was successful in developing a vineyard and winery whose wines have received numerous world awards, helping position Chile in a distinct light with its high quality, high value wines. Her son, Felipe Marín, follows in her footsteps as a winemaker. Together they have created some of the most awarded Chilean wines outside of the country in the icon and premium categories, and they dedicate themselves exclusively to the winery. In general, it is the Marín family team – siblings and children – who continue to passionately support this boutique winery’s growth.

FELIPE MÜLLER EAST, TABALI (Limarí, CHILE)
Panelist

The particular nature of the terroir in each of Tabalí’s vineyards means that their wines are appreciated by people who value wines with character. They are the pioneers and one of the biggest innovators in developing viticulture in the Limarí Valley. With the objective of seeking new terroirs in the valley, the company bought the former El Bosque vineyard in the mountainous sector of Río Hurtado in 2010. Here it planted a vineyard at an altitude of 1,600 metres, which made Tabalí the only winery to own vineyards from the ocean to the mountains in the same valley. Viña Tabalí chooses slopes facing away from the sun, which are unique and exceptional terroirs for singular wines. The indigenous El Molle people lived in the Limarí River Valley. The cellar at Viña Tabalí was designed and built to be reminiscent of the Molle way of life. Built right on the ravine, the building fits naturally into its environment.

PAIRING PINOT NOIR: A BALANCING ACT

Depending on site, vintage, and climate, Pinot can present at a variety of alcohol levels. With an eye toward this variety, we are putting the moniker ‘Pinot is the most versatile red’ to the test! Learn the nuances of choosing the right food pairing whether you’ve got a lean, cool vintage example or a plush Pinot from a warm climate or year. We will pour four Pinots of varying alcohol levels and explore how foods across a spectrum of salt, spice, fat, and acid affect the wines and vice versa.
NICK DOUGHTY, ELEPHANTS DELICATESSEN (Portland, OR)
Moderator

Born and raised in Napa, California, Nick started his career in specialty foods at the age of 16, manning the cheese counter at Oakville Grocery. While attending graduate school in Northern Ireland, he ran Feast Belfast, the region’s first cheese shop, while hosting a monthly cheese show on BBCNI radio. Upon returning to the Napa Valley, Nick worked at Palisades Market before taking over the cheese and charcuterie counter at Dean & DeLuca and becoming passionate about wine. Nick and his wife came to Portland, Oregon in 2006, and he has managed Elephants Delicatessen ever since. Nick has been featured in Bobby Flay’s Boy Meets Grill, National Geographic Traveler, and National Public Radio. Outside of work, Nick hikes with his daughter, gardens, and spends way too much time on pyrography.

CHRIS REMY, ELEPHANTS DELICATESSEN (Portland, OR)
Moderator

Originally from New York, Chris Remy cooked in the burgeoning food scene of numerous restaurants in New York City and Oregon before falling in love with cheese and charcuterie. Hanging up his clogs and moving into mongering. Chris helmed the cheese and charcuterie counter as the manager and co-owner of New York’s Stinky Bklyn, one of the nation’s most influential shops. After five years in Brooklyn, Chris and his wife returned to Portland, Oregon where he shaped the cheese, charcuterie and specialty grocery programs at Elephants Delicatessen. Hipsters and gentrification (and great food) follow Chris wherever he goes. Chris has appeared in numerous publications including the The New York Times and Alex Guarnaschelli’s Alex’s Day Off. In his spare time, Chris can be found obsessing over baseball, records, Broadway musicals, or a salted pig’s leg hanging from his basement rafters.

GERMAN PINOT NOIR

Pinot noir is called spätburgunder in Germany, which happens to be the third biggest producer of Pinot noir in the world— larger in quantity than New World regions Oregon and New Zealand. Pinot noir has been grown in Germany for centuries. The cooler climates of Germany produce elegant wines of great complexity and exceptional quality. Taste a range of German Pinots and talk with winemakers about what makes German Pinot noir so desirable.
STUART PIGOTT, JAMESSUCKLING.COM | FRANKFURTER ALLGEMEINE ZEITUNG (Berlin, GERMANY)
Moderator

After getting a master’s degree in cultural history from the Royal College of Art in London in 1986 Stuart Pigott realized that the only way he could earn a living was to write about wine. He has lived in Germany for almost 30 years and although his name is most closely associated with the wines of the Rhine and Mosel he has undertaken in-depth research in regions as widely contrasting as the Médoc in Bordeaux, Hua Hin in Thailand and the Willamette Valley in Oregon. In 2008-9 Pigott was a guest student at the famous Geisenheim wine school in Germany and combines the scientific approach he learned there with hardcore gonzo journalism inspired by the works of Hunter S. Thompson. He is a contributing editor to JamesSuckling.com, the wine columnist of the Sunday edition of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (Germany’s equivalent of the New York Times) and has his own blog, www.stuartpigott.com.

FRITZ BECKER, FRIEDRICH BECKER ESTATE (Schweigen, GERMANY)
Panelist

At Weingut Friedrich Becker, the goal is simple yet ambitious: to create the best possible wines from their outstanding soil and terroir.  To achieve this goal, a winemaker has to be in tune with nature. For Friedrich Becker, the wealth of creation is not merely the basis of their work, but an inspiration.  Every year they are presented with new challenges and unique requirements that inform the personality of each vintage – this is what motivates and leads them on a path of continuous learning.  The sum of all insights throughout the decades has enabled them to create some truly outstanding wines – for which they are thankful, and will continue to strive to perfect their craft. Wine, its cultivation and production, and even the way it’s enjoyed, will continue to evolve, and they are looking forward to bringing the joy of Becker wines to many more generations to come.

JULIAN HUBER, WEINGUT BERNARD HUBER (Malterdingen, GERMANY)
Panelist

Described by World of Fine Wine as “one of the most important wine producers in Germany of the past 20 years” Bernard Huber’s small, family owned estate sits to the east of the famous Kaiserstuhl in the Baden village of Malterdingen. Huber wines are often mistaken for Burgundy due to the cool, wet Malterdingen weather and its limestone soils, which are very similar to those found in the Cote d’Or. Records show that Cistercian Monks brought Pinot noir to Malterdingen almost 700 years ago, planting the Wildenstein parcel in the Bienenberg vineyard. As today’s Burgundian Grand Cru sites prove, when it comes to Pinot noir, the Monks had an eye for terroir. Today the estate is run by Bernard’s son Julian Huber, with the same winemaking team that was there in Bernard’s time. The more vintages the young Julian Huber gets under his belt, the more it becomes obvious what a gifted winemaker he is.

ERNST LOOSEN, VILLA WOLF (Wachenheim, GERMANY)
Panelist

For Ernst Loosen, taking on the J.L. Wolf estate was déjà vu all over again. As with Dr. Loosen, he seized the opportunity to revitalize a neglected wine estate blessed with excellent vineyards. Founded in 1756, in the Pfalz region of Germany, the J.L. Wolf estate (now called Villa Wolf) was a successful and highly regarded winery for more than two centuries. It entered an especially glamorous era with the construction of its Italianate estate house and villa in 1843. The goal at Villa Wolf is to produce wines that express the pure, authentic terroir of the Pfalz. Since 2011, the estate has been managed by a talented and dedicated young team that previously worked at Dr. Loosen. Sumi Gebauer and Patrick Möllen­dorf have brought renewed energy and focus to the viticulture and winemaking at Villa Wolf. They employ sustainable viticultural practices and emphasize gentle handling of the fruit through traditional, minimalist winemaking.

CANADIAN PINOT NOIR

Hear from winemakers from three very diverse regions from across Canada: the Okanagan, Ontario and Nova Scotia. The Okanagan valley, about a four-hour drive east from Vancouver B.C., is cool but dry; it is the very northernmost tip of the Sonora desert. The sub-appellation of Beamsville Bench in Ontario benefits from a topography that provides continuous air circulation, moderating temperatures, yielding consistent growing conditions. Nova Scotia’s bucolic Annapolis Valley, located an hour from Halifax, is the easternmost home to Pinot noir in Canada, featuring stunning vistas of the climate-moderating Bay of Fundy, which boasts the largest tides in the world at 16.5 meters high.
JAMIE GOODE, WINEANORAK.COM (London, UNITED KINGDOM)
Moderator

Jamie Goode is a London-based wine writer who is currently a wine columnist with U.K. national paper The Sunday Express. Jamie came to wine writing through a rather convoluted route. He earned a PhD in plant biology and spent several years working as a book editor before he began publishing the leading wine website wineanorak.com. He has also appeared on television (Richard and Judy, Sky News, BBC Breakfast, and BBC News Channel). He won the 2007 Glenfiddich Wine Writer of the Year award and contributes regularly to a range of publications including The World of Fine Wine, Wine Business International, Wines & Vines, Sommelier Journal, The Drinks Business, and Imbibe. His first book, Wine Science, won the Glenfiddich Award for Drinks Book in 2006. His latest book, Flawless: Understanding Faults in Wine, was named a Best Wine Book of 2018 by the New York Times.

TREVE RING, WINEALIGN (Vancouver Island, CANADA)
Moderator

Treve Ring is regularly seen in numerous publications including Meininger’s Wine Business International, World of Fine Wine, Wine & Spirits, Sommelier Magazine, Wine Enthusiast, WineAlign, Alchemist, and Quench Magazine, and she is an executive editor at Gismondi on Wine, Scout Magazine, and SIP Northwest Magazine. She tastes thousands of wines each year, and is an established wine judge in Canada, the UK, South Africa and the United States. A certified sommelier, WSET diploma holder, French wine scholar and instructor, and Sherry instructor, she is based on Vancouver Island, Canada, though is most often found on a plane or in a vineyard. Though her travels take her all over the wine world, Treve has spent the last few years concentrating and researching sparkling wine globally.

CHRISTINE COLETTA, OKANAGAN CRUSH PAD WINERY (Summerland, British Columbia, CANADA)
Panelist

The journey began in 2006 when Christine Coletta and Steve Lornie planted a 10-acre site in Summerland, British Columbia and named it Switchback Vineyard. Three years later, a tiny crop yielding 168 cases was harvested. Curiosity won out over practicality, Haywire was launched and there was no turning back. In 2011, Coletta and Lornie opened Okanagan Crush Pad, an innovative custom winemaking facility, to give Haywire a home. Today, their venture includes 380 acres of vineyard and farmland, and Haywire has two sister brands: Free Form and Narrative. Their signature wines include Pinot gris, Pinot noir, Gamay noir, Sauvignon blanc and traditional method sparkling. Haywire is recognized as making game-changing wines with New Zealander Matt Dumayne at the helm, and Alberto Antonini and Pedro Parra consulting. The team is committed to organic farming and creating wines that let the natural beauty of the Okanagan Valley shine through.

JOSH HORTON, LIGHTFOOT & WOLFVILLE VINEYARDS (Wolfville, Nova Scotia, CANADA)
Panelist

Family owned and operated by eighth-generation farmers, Lightfoot & Wolfville Vineyards is a Demeter certified biodynamic farm-winery located in the heart of the Annapolis Valley in Nova Scotia, Canada. With close proximity to the Bay of Fundy, and the world’s highest tides, coastal breezes and temperature moderation help create wines with great distinction. The focus is on terroir-driven, cool-climate wines, including traditional method sparklings, Chardonnay, Pinot noir, and aromatic whites such as Riesling. At a current annual production of 10,000 cases, Lightfoot & Wolfville’s winemaking program is about a return from modern, large-scale methods to classic, artisanal viticulture and enology. The fruit is 100% hand-harvested, processed using a traditional basket press, and fermented with indigenous, wild yeasts. Opened in 2017, the state-of-the-art Lightfoot & Wolfville winery facility features modern, barn architecture, a farm-to-table culinary program, and operates as a bespoke event venue.

HARALD THIEL, HIDDEN BENCH ESTATE WINERY (Beamsville, Ontario, CANADA)

Founded in 2003, Hidden Bench is an artisanal, estate winery situated in the heart of the Beamsville Bench sub-appellation of Niagara. This boutique winery, whose mantra is “Sustainability, Terroir, Technology and Passion,” has established a reputation for excellence both domestically and internationally due to the consistent benchmark quality of its wines. Reputed for its forward-thinking use of environmentally sustainable practices as well as the superb quality of its wines, Hidden Bench farms its low yield vineyards using organically certified practices, employs geothermal technology to control cellar and wine process temperatures, and is the only Ontario winery to generate its own electricity through 105 solar panels.

PINOT 101

Join wine experts Paul Gregutt and Greg Jones as they reveal approachable and accessible tactics to help the burgeoning wine-fan to build their palates, as well as their understanding and confidence. Gain a basic understanding of different Pinot-growing regions across the world, as well as the soil and climatic differences that differentiate them from each other. Guests will depart with a level of knowledge that will enable them to confidently pick new exciting wines among wine shops and restaurant lists.
PAUL GREGUTT, WINE ENTHUSIAST (Sonoma, CA)
Moderator

An IPNC veteran, Paul Gregutt began writing about lifestyle topics and then was eventually drawn to wine writing and the stories behind the wine. He has been writing about wine from the Pacific Northwest for 30 years, has published one of the big Washington wine texts, entitled Washington Wines and Wineries and has served as a contributing author to both the World Atlas of Wine and the Oxford Companion to Wine. Paul also serves as director of winemaking at Waitsburg Cellars. He is a Contributing Editor for Wine Enthusiast magazine, a founding member of the magazine’s Tasting Panel, and reviews the wines of Oregon and Canada.

GREG JONES, EVENSTAD CENTER FOR WINE STUDIES – LINFIELD COLLEGE (McMinnville, OR)
Moderator

Gregory V. Jones is the Director of the Evenstad Center for Wine Education, holds the Evenstad Chair in Wine Studies, and is a professor and research climatologist in the Department of Environmental Studies at Linfield College. He specializes in the study of climate structure and suitability for viticulture, and how climate variability and change influence grapevine growth, wine production and quality. He holds a BA and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in Environmental Sciences with a concentration in the Atmospheric Sciences. His teaching and research interests include meteorology, climatology, hydrology, and agriculture; phenology of plant systems; biosphere and atmosphere interactions; climate change; and quantitative methods in spatial and temporal analysis. He conducts applied research for the grape and wine industry in Oregon and has given hundreds of international, national, and regional presentations on climate and wine-related research. He is the author of numerous book chapters, including being a contributing author to the 2008 Nobel Peace Prize winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Report, and other reports and articles on wine economics, grapevine phenology, site assessment methods for viticulture, climatological assessments of viticultural potential, and climate change.

STA. RITA HILLS PINOT NOIR

The Sta. Rita Hills American Viticulture Appellation is located on California’s Central Coast in Santa Barbara County. The Pacific Ocean’s marine layer and afternoon ocean breezes traverse the coastal valley corridors between the Purisima Hills and the Santa Rosa Hills, creating the perfect environment for growing Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and other cool climate wine grape varieties. Taste five excellent examples of Sta. Rita Hills Pinot noir and learn from the winemakers about what sets this region apart from the rest.
MATT KETTMANN, WINE ENTHUSIAST (Santa Barbara, CA)
Moderator

A fifth generation Californian originally from San Jose, Matt Kettmann covers California’s Central Coast and South Coast for Wine Enthusiast magazine, reviewing about 200 wines each month. He is also the senior editor of The Santa Barbara Independent, where he’s worked since 1999, and has written for the New York Times, Time Magazine, Wine Spectator, and Smithsonian. He’s working on a book about Santa Barbara County vintners called Vines & Vision, and makes a barrel or two of wine each year, a mostly educational affair that started with Sta. Rita Hills Syrah in 2012. He also co-founded New Noise Santa Barbara, a music festival that ran from 2009 to 2015, and serves on the boards of numerous organizations, including Notes for Notes, the Santa Barbara Culinary Experience, Epicurean Santa Barbara, and the Santa Cruz Island Foundation.  

JOHN FALCONE, GAINEY VINEYARD (Santa Ynez, CA)
Panelist

The Gainey’s three ranches are located in two of Santa Barbara County’s most esteemed appellations: the Santa Ynez Valley and the Sta. Rita Hills. Each ranch offers a unique combination of soil types, microclimate, sun exposure and grape varieties, ensuring great complexity in our wines. They grow warm climate varieties at their Home Ranch in the warmer, eastern end of Santa Ynez Valley and cool climate varieties at their Evan’s Ranch and Rancho Esperanza in the cool, marine-influenced Sta. Rita Hills appellation. Gainey was one of the pioneering wineries to establish the Sta. Rita Hills appellation. All three of these ranches yield grapes of exceptional character, allowing Gainey to craft 100% estate-grown wines.

JULIAN HOWSEPIAN, KOSTA BROWNE WINERY (Sebastopol, CA)
Panelist

The vision of Kosta Browne is to be the global benchmark for California Pinot noir and Chardonnay. Their team is obsessed with quality, and they apply the same meticulous approach across grape growing, sourcing, and advanced cellar practices. At Kosta Browne, they extend their commitment to excellence through gracious hospitality. With every bottle, they want to tell the story of California’s most sought-after wines.

ADAM LEE, SIDURI WINES (Healdsburg, CA)
Panelist

Siduri, named for the Babylonian goddess of wine, is the result of our founder, Adam Lee’s, love of Pinot noir, and his dream that he could make great wines of his own. Today, Siduri’s breadth and depth of Pinot noir is truly unique. We specialize in cool-climate Pinot noir, producing wines that represent regions and single-vineyards from five major AVAs spanning from Oregon’s Willamette Valley to California’s Santa Barbara County.

NICK DE LUCA, ALMA ROSA WINERY (Buelton, CA)
Panelist

Founded in 2005, Alma Rosa Winery is situated on the north-facing slopes of the Santa Rosa Hills in Santa Barbara County. Our wines are layered, vibrant, and balanced, reflecting the terroir of the Sta. Rita Hills. The appellation benefits from cool Pacific Ocean breezes funneled inland through the unique transverse mountain range of this region. The Alma Rosa estate vineyard, El Jabali, was planted to Pinot noir and Chardonnay in 1983 and became the first certified organic vineyard in Santa Barbara County.  In 2015, Nick de Luca joined the winery to bring a fresh perspective to our wines. Concurrently, we planted an additional 37 acres of vines, predominately Pinot noir and Chardonnay vines, as well as a small amount of Syrah, Grenache and Viognier. Today, Alma Rosa produces about 5,000 cases of wine.

LAURA ROACH, SANFORD WINERY (Lompoc, CA)
Panelist

In the early 1970s, the first vines were planted in Sta. Rita Hills at the now-legendary Sanford & Benedict Vineyard. For nearly 50 years, this vineyard — a site that Wine Enthusiast lists as one of the five most important and iconic vineyards in the state of California — has set the standard for quality in the region and is home to the oldest Pinot noir vines all of Santa Barbara county. The voice of this vineyard is what made Sanford Winery special then and is what continues to make Sanford Winery special today. At Sanford, they strive for wines that are balanced, nuanced and memorable; wines that exceed expectations. Every wine they produce must speak of the “place,” so they pay close attention to the voice of their historic vineyard and employ a strict minimalist intervention philosophy.

A CONVERSATION WITH STEVEN SPURRIER

Engage in this once-in-a-lifetime chance to have an intimate discussion with IPNC’s 2019 Master of Ceremonies, Steven Spurrier. Share a glass of sparkling wine from his Bride Valley estate in Dorset while getting to know this legend of the wine world. Hear Steven’s tales of everything from opening the first private wine school in Paris, to the famous Judgement of Paris, to acting as a consulting editor to Decanter magazine. David Millman, of Domaine Drouhin Oregon, will be on hand to facilitate an interactive discussion between Steven and the audience. Pick up an autographed copy of Steven’s latest book, Wine – A Way of Life.
STEVEN SPURRIER, DECANTER (London, UNITED KINGDOM)

Decanter‘s consultant editor Steven Spurrier joined the wine trade in London in 1964 and later moved to Paris where he bought a wine shop in 1971, and then opened L’Academie du Vin, France’s first private wine school. Spurrier organized the historic 1976 blind tasting between wines from California and France, the Judgement of Paris, forever changing the world’s view of New World wines. Spurrier now makes his own Bride Valley Sparkling Wine from his vines in Dorset. His latest book, Wine — A Way of Life, was released in the fall of 2018.

DAVID MILLMAN, DOMAINE DROUHIN OREGON (Dayton, OR)
Moderator

David Millman joined the iconic Domaine Drouhin Oregon in 2004 after a 20-year career in the music business, working for several record companies and eventually running his own public relations and marketing firm. The 225-acre estate in Dayton, Oregon includes 105 acres planted to Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and is certified sustainable by LIVE. In addition to his duties with DDO, David has served on several boards, and has been Board President of both the International Pinot Noir Celebration and Oregon Pinot Camp.  He is active in supporting the Salud Auction, and frequently serves on industry committees.