By Donn Rutkoff
"Man About Wine"
July 19, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) -- Hello to all wine lovers in the East County and all wine lovers anywhere who are reading East County Magazine. This is my first column and we hope there will be many more. I will be bringing you news of what is happening here in the county, news of interest to the local growers and fermenters, and some educational "fluff" to help you enjoy wines.
Here is a preview of this week's wine-worthy topics. (Hit "read more" and scroll down for the full stories.)
- Sparkling wines in an hour?
- Warm-weather red grapes
- New tasting rooms - thanks to rezoning underway
- Wine columnist shares his roots
March 24, 2014 (Campo) – The Chefs de Cuisine and The Campo RR Museum are celebrating over fifty years of service to the San Diego California Vintners Alliance on April 5, from 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. at the Campo Museum, Hwy 94 & Forrest Gate Road, Campo. Dine amidst the Museum’s historic railroad trains and artifacts.
February 10, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--The worst drought in California history is hitting farmers hard—and soon, consumers may be paying higher prices as a result.
By Sharon Penny
County Contends Amendments Will Clarify Existing Ordinance; Wineries See Restrictions with Major Impacts
January 23, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--The County of San Diego held a Tiered Winery Ordinance Workshop on January 17 in an effort to discuss and solicit feedback from the public on its draft zoning ordinance amendments that will affect local wineries.
More than 100 people were in attendance, many representing a variety of boutique wineries in San Diego County.
There was a unanimous sentiment from local vintners that the proposed amendments would place burdensome restrictions on local wineries, leading to the destruction of the county’s burgeoning small business operations.
By Miriam Raftery
June 26, 2013 (La Mesa) – “Isn’t this amazing?” Linda McWilliams, winemaker at San Pasqual Winery, exclaimed, standing inside the company’s new winery in a former industrial building in La Mesa. Hundreds of guests packed into the 4,500 square foot space for the winery’s grand opening celebration last weekend, savoring the fruits of McWilliams’ labors.
Those labors are yielding some impressive results. At this year’s San Diego County Fair, San Pasqual Winery picked up six awards, including a gold medal for the winery’s most popular offering, Habañera passionfruit wine.
By Janis Mork
February 28, 2013 (El Cajon)-At Tuesday’s City Council meeting, members voted unanimously to send a “deemed approved” ordinance to restrict single-serve alcohol sales to the Planning Commission.
City manager Doug Wlliford introduced the alcohol sales land use study session, advising Council members, “It’s a very complex issue.” A PowerPoint presentation included three speakers- Chief of Police Jim Redman, Planning Manager Manjeet Ranu, and City Attorney Morgan Foley.”
By Miriam Raftery
November 27, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) -- Looking to support our local economy while choosing special holiday gifts? We’ve scoured East County to find truly unique gifts made and sold locally. What could be finer than to receive an alpaca sweater spun and woven with locally grown wool? Or a hand-stitched quilt, locally crafted jewelry or a delectable freshly baked dessert? Perhaps your gift recipients would savor local wines grown in the Old World style, camel milk soaps scented with frankincense and myrrh, or intricately hand-beaded pottery.
Search no more! You’ll find all of these delightful items and more in our “Gifts from the East: 2012 Holiday Shopping Guide” below:
By Miriam Raftery
November 21, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – This holiday season, why not support our local economy by buying your gifts locally? Below are our picks to some of this year’s most unique and special offerings from San Diego’s eastern regions.
By Matt Kopjak
August 17, 2011 (San Diego’s East County)--Ernest Hemingway wrote: “Wine… offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than, possibly, any other purely sensory thing.”
Looking for something quick and easy to bring to your Labor Day party?Wine makes the perfect complement to any meal, and the perfect gift for any social occasion. So it’s easy to say, “I’ll pick up a bottle.” But is it really that simple to choose the right wine for your family gathering? Grocery and liquor stores carry hundreds of bottles of wine, each one crafted for a different occasion.
Fruitful wine industry restores farmers’ dreams in rural East County
Story by Miriam Raftery
Photos by Mark and Miriam Raftery
July 22, 2011 (Spring Valley) – Friends and neighbors turned out to help plant 600 grapevine rootstocks from Napa Valley last weekend at the Vineyard Mansion in Spring Valley. Afterwards, guests savored a poolside tri-tip barbecue and sampled estate-bottled vintages in a stone-lined wine cellar.
Their efforts are all part of a vision by East County vintners to establish a wine-making region along Highway 94—revitalizing the local economy with a new agricultural market to reward the fruits of their labors.