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The LoCA Life & Times

In Lodi, wine comes first. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. Meet the passionate people behind our handcrafted wines and gnarly old vines.

Randy Caparoso
 
April 29, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

ZinFest’s Vintner’s Grille menu

ZinFest’s Vintner’s Grille menu

Each year, the Lodi ZinFest‘s Friday night Vintner’s Grille at the Lake is a special affair when you can mix and mingle with Lodi’s finest winemakers and growers, while watching the sun sink into Lodi Lake in its customary spring blaze of violets, blues, reds and oranges. Then comes the crisp, cool air of our Lodi evenings in May, the stars shimmering over the mirrored water… magic! This year’s Vintner’s Grille takes place on May 13th, 2011 at 6-9 PM, and the dinner menu is a Delta inspired, zin-friendly feast that you do not wish to miss: Tomato & basil..

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Time Posted: Apr 29, 2011 at 8:52 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
April 27, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

The 2011 ZinFest Cooking School

The 2011 ZinFest Cooking School

Foods and wines we really love at the ZinFest Cooking School… In addition to the ZinFest Wine School at Lodi’s ZinFest Wine Festival taking place this coming May 14 in Lodi Lake Park, wine lovers may enjoy delectable tastes of the region’s wine country cuisine under the tent of the ZinFest Cooking School. There’s a lot to be said about accessibility in a sensory sense, and everyday affordability. One of the joys of the lush, juicy, pure and fruit forward qualities characteristic of wines grown in the Delta is their ease with foods that we all actually love to eat…..

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Time Posted: Apr 27, 2011 at 9:04 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
April 22, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

East vs. west side 2010 Zinfandels

East vs. west side 2010 Zinfandels

Winemakers who have been working with Zinfandel vineyards grown on both the east and west sides of the Lodi AVA (i.e. American Viticultural Area) have long known that there are some differences between the wines, despite overlapping characteristics reflecting the pretty much consistent Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta influenced macroclimate and soil types found in Lodi. Just within the heart of the Mokelumne River AVA, where the vast majority of Lodi’s heritage plantings (Zinfandel vines 30 to over 100 years old) are located, there is enough variation of Tokay sandy loam in the soil to make an impact. Many of the..

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Time Posted: Apr 22, 2011 at 9:09 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
April 20, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

Lodi at the California Wine Festivals

Lodi at the California Wine Festivals

Lodi is invading the beautiful, sun splashed seaside towns of Southern and Central California! No less than 10 of Lodi’s finest wineries will be present and accounted for at the 2nd Annual California Wine Festival, which takes place in two outdoor venues, on two sets of dates: the first, in the laid back, sea salt scented, Surf City atmosphere of Doheny State Beach in Orange County’s Dana Point (April 29-30, 2011); and the second, in chic, sophisticated Santa Barbara (July 14-16, 2011). Orange County alone is home to over 3 million people; many of them with a growing thirst for..

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Time Posted: Apr 20, 2011 at 9:14 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
April 16, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

Lodi spring’s beauty of days

Lodi spring’s beauty of days

In the seasonal rhythms of life, spring is when the earth is breathing out; and we respond in kind, taking our bites and draughts with renewed energy and fervor. Or as in Van Morrison’s The Beauty of Days Gone By: marveling at how youth is served, even as we age… When I recall just how it felt When I went walking down by the lake My soul was free, my heart awake When I walked down into the town… The mountain air was fresh and clear The sun was up behind the hill It felt so good to be alive..

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Time Posted: Apr 16, 2011 at 9:22 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
April 13, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

Ripken makes DIY, unconscious wines

Ripken makes DIY, unconscious wines

Indoors Out‘s Dean & Derek builds it, and all the more reason to come to the Ripken family’s winery… In real life, contractors don’t arrive on Friday and leave you the following Sunday with a gleaming, new, 2,000 foot outdoor living area, complete with a 40×18 foot arbor, wet bar and fire pit. But this is television, and it’s also Lodi’s Ripken Vineyards & Winery — where you always find a rusted metallic pig with angelic wings proudly flying high on a pole because, as Richard “Rip” Ripken is fond of reminding everyone, “they said Lodi would make good wine..

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Time Posted: Apr 13, 2011 at 9:32 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
April 11, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

The ZinFest commemorative bottling

The ZinFest commemorative bottling

Artist Vince McIndoe and m2’s Layne Montgomery create a memorable ZinFest bottling… Each year the Lodi ZinFest commissions one of the region’s most respected wineries to blend a commemorative label ZinFest bottling from their finest cuvées. In years past, Michael~David, Macchia, St. Amant and Klinker Brick have had that privilege, and this year m2 has those honors. What does Garrison Keillor have to do with whipping up a great Zinfandel in Lodi? For Layne Montgomery, m2’s winemaker/proprietor, it’s a matter of “making things better.” As we sat down this past March to taste the separate components going into the 2009..

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Time Posted: Apr 11, 2011 at 9:46 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
April 8, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

ZinFest School’s savory lesson plan

ZinFest School’s savory lesson plan

The ZinFest Wine School at Lodi’s ZinFest Wine Festival, taking place this coming May 14 in the lush riparian setting of Lodi Lake Park, will offer wine lovers a picnic basketful of opportunities to learn while you savor the vinous bounties of Lodi. For instance, have you ever wanted to experience the task of a winemaker, blending wines sourced from different vineyards or barrels to make the best possible wine? Michael Perry, a 25 year veteran in the wine industry (and Direct to Consumer/Wine Club Manager of m2 Wines), will start the school off by helping you blend your own..

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Time Posted: Apr 8, 2011 at 9:53 PM
Randy Caparoso
 
April 2, 2011 | Randy Caparoso

The amazin’ codgerly !ZaZin

The amazin’ codgerly !ZaZin

He’s a poet, he’s a picker, sings Kris Kristofferson in Pilgrim. A walkin’ contradiction, partly truth and partly fiction… Since 1992, winemaker Patrick Campbell has been pickin’ grapes outside of his home vineyard/estate atop Sonoma Mountain, working with old time Lodi family growers to produce a wine he calls REDS: a red wine, of course, and one that has set a quality standard for $10-$12 retail priced wine with its remarkably consistent balance of qualities associated with Zinfandel, Carignane and Petite Sirah culled from Lodi’s old vine, heritage plantings. Hence, the wine’s original mottos, “REDS – a wine for the..

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Time Posted: Apr 2, 2011 at 9:58 PM