Letters from Lodi

An insightful and objective look at viticulture and winemaking from the Lodi
Appellation and the growers and vintners behind these crafts. Told from the
perspective of multi-award winning wine journalist, Randy Caparoso.

Randy Caparoso
November 1, 2012 | Randy Caparoso

Get into holiday spirit with LoCA by helping with Lodi Community Food Drive


Holiday squash at Michael David Winery

‘Tis the season to give thanks and praise for everything we are fortunate to be blessed with in our lives:  family, friends, a caring community, and — especially for Lodi — the generosity of the 2012 wine grape harvest (a truly rare combination of exceptional quality and crop size).


Scarecrow in Michael David's corn maze

To make the 2012 holidays a little more special, LoCA — the wines of Lodi, CA — is teaming up with the Salvation Army to organize a Lodi Community Food Drive.

Jenny Heitman, Lodi Winegrape Commission‘s newly appointed Marketing & Communications Coordinator, always puts it well:  “It’s been said that the true spirit of the holiday season is giving, but with the hustle and bustle of family trips, last-minute shopping and work, this message can easily get lost.”

There is no better of getting into the holiday spirit, says Heitman, than by helping “those in need,” and you can do that by bringing all the canned and non-perishable food items you can (ideas:  boxed stuffing or mashed potatoes, mac ‘n cheese, gravy, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie mixes) to the Lodi Wine & Visitor Center at 2545 W. Turner Rd., in the heart of the Lodi wine country.

LoCA’s holiday food drive begins today (November 1), and will continue all the way thr0ugh Monday, November 19.  In exchange for your holiday spirit, the folks at the Lodi Wine & Visitor Center will treat you to a complimentary tasting (redeemable at time of donation; to those over 21 years of age, of course).

Camron King, Executive Director of the Lodi Winegrape Commission, adds, “this time of year provides a great opportunity for each of us to consider making contributions back to the communities we live in and to the people we call neighbors.

“On behalf of the Lodi region growers and vintners, we’re asking that you please help us to make a difference in the lives of those who need assistance by making their holidays a little brighter.  No contribution of canned or non-perishable goods is too small.”


Typical Lodi wine country scene: m2 winemaker/owner Layne Montgomery chatting up visiting wine lovers

The Lodi Wine & Visitor Center is open seven days a week from 10 AM to 5 PM.  Please call 209.365.0621 for answers to any questions, or contact Jenny Heitman at


Another happy Lodi citizen (Michael David's Phillips Farms)

Lodi Wine Country is planted to over 100,000 acres of wine grapes, and crushes approximately 20% of California’s total wine production — more than Napa and Sonoma combined!

With the growing consumer interest in ultra-premium quality wine since the early 1990s, the region has experienced exponential growth — Lodi is now home to over over 80 wineries, many garnering top awards at all the major wine competitions.

Is there a better place to enjoy a culinary experience?  Centrally located between Sacramento and the Bay Area, Lodi has become one of the world’s most idyllic wine destinations — wonderfully expressive wines, real experiences, and most important of all, genuine people:  it is not unusual to walk into a Lodi winery tasting room, for instance, and find yourself engrossed in conversation with a winemaker or farmer with ties to the Delta dating back over 100 years (more than half of Lodi’s wineries are operated by third, fourth, fifth or even sixth generation descendants of the region’s original farming families).

Come to Lodi, and help kick off the holidays with a generous spirit!


Michael David's Kevin Phillips (sixth generation Lodi farmer)



Lodi Wine Visitor Center
2545 West Turner Road Lodi, CA 95242
Open: Daily 10:00am-5:00pm

Lodi Winegrape Commission
2545 West Turner Road, Lodi, CA 95242
Open: Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:00pm

Have a question? Complete our contact form.