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
July 22, 2019 | Randy Caparoso

The Biodynamically grown Lodi wines of Avivo and Köppen-Geiger climate classifications

Vino Farms' Mike Harder (left) and DaVero Farms Ridge Evers at Lodi's The Bench Vineyard (Biodynamic grown Vermentino)

Bringing natural and Biodynamic principles to Lodi

"Grow what belongs here... be patient" is what you read on the Web site page explaining the farming philosophy of DaVero Farms & Winery, founded by Ridgely Evers and his wife Colleen McGlynn.

While DaVero Farms & Winery is located in the Healdsburg area of Sonoma County, there are connections to the Lodi Viticultural Area: Starting eight years ago with vintages of Vermentino sourced by Schatz Family Farms in the Cosumnes River-Lodi AVA, bottled under a sub-label called Avivo...

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Randy Caparoso
July 16, 2019 | Randy Caparoso

Anaya Vineyards rises from the ashes of Viñedos Aurora with an iconoclastic Nebbiolo and Pinot gris

Anaya Vineyards owner/winemaker Gerardo Espinosa sampling deep, dark red emblematic of his family's Clements Hills vineyards

Lean and iconoclastically tart and edgy skin-contact Pinot gris. A rarely seen Nebbiolo showing the intricacies of a grape that tends to get lost on California wine lovers, accustomed to more obvious, wham-bam, instant gratification. And grown in Lodi. This is what this post is all about. But first, a little background...

Lodi wine lovers in-the-know have no doubt noticed the recent disappearance of wines bottled under the Viñedos Aurora label. These were deep, dark, powerful wines made from Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah grown by the Anaya family – second generation Mexican-American farmers – from their home vineyard (called Viñedos Aurora Vineyard) in the red clay colored slopes of Lodi’s Clements Hills AVA, just east of the little communities of Victor and Lockeford...

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Randy Caparoso
July 11, 2019 | Randy Caparoso

The professional wine problem busters at Lodi Wine Labs

Lodi Wine Labs COO Matt DiVisconte with a tool of his trade (microscope)

When there’s something strange in a wine produced by a small winery or home winemaker, who you gonna call?

In Lodi, professional and amateur winemakers alike enjoy the distinct advantage of being able to call upon Lodi Wine Labs, located right here in the City of Lodi just adjacent to California Hwy. 99.

Lodi Wine Labs is not only one of the largest and best-equipped commercial industry laboratories in the entire U.S. – offering analytical services for the production of not just wines but also for beer, mead, spirits as well as water and metals – it is also a one-stop shopping center for virtually anything anyone may want or need for the fermentation and production of alcoholic beverages. You name it, they got it: corks, bungs, hydro presses, bladder presses and old fashioned wood basket presses, steel drums and oak barrels, filters, yeasts, nutrients, 6-gallon glass carboys or plastic tubs for the first-time home winemaker or 290-liter stainless steel fermentation tanks for the aspiring, future or would-be wine industry professional...

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Randy Caparoso
July 8, 2019 | Randy Caparoso

Enjoying wines with authentic Hawaiian style poke

Hukilau (net fishing, followed by a feast of fresh fish on the beach) in Hawaii, circa 1905

The native Hawaiian dish called poke (pronounced poh-keh) is now found seemingly everywhere outside the fiftieth state. It was bound to happen, with millions of people from around the world visiting the Hawaiian Islands each year, and then going back to their homes in New York, California, Minnesota, Texas, and everywhere else in the American continents, Asian or European countries still dreaming about the taste of this raw fish dish.

What is so captivating about poke? Although there are countless variations of the dish, most often made with sashimi-grade 'ahi tuna (yellowfin or bigeye tuna), the one thing they all have in common is that they taste like, well, Hawaii. It’s those briny, salty, fresh sensations that are basically the culinary equivalent of taking a dip in the refreshing waters on one of those Hawaiian beaches where that sand is as soft as pillows, and waves roll up and back onto the shore with that foaming sizzle...

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Randy Caparoso
July 2, 2019 | Randy Caparoso

A look at Lodi wine from the perspectives of an influential Boomer vs. savvy Millennial

Jim Gordon and Jennifer Estevez conducting seminar at 2019 Lodi Vineyard & Wine Economics Symposium (image courtesy of Wine Business Monthly)

“How do Lodi wines relate to the big picture?” That was a question asked by Jim Gordon at the Lodi Vineyard & Wine Economics Symposium last week (June 27), in a seminar entitled Modern Lodi: The Media View on Lodi Wines’ Stature In the Marketplace.

Mr. Gordon’s outlook on Lodi wines, and Lodi as a winegrowing region in general, carries a lot of weight because he, like many longtime traditional print media journalists, has only recently (within the past 10 years) begun to recognize Lodi as a source of distinctive, high quality wines. Prior to that, his opinion of Lodi wines was... well, put it this way, it wasn’t that positive...

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