“It’s 5 o’clock somewhere…” That was the song of the harvest for us this year and, at 11 am last Friday, it was echoing loudly across the winery as the last of the Cabernet Sauvignon grapes rolled off the sorting table. Another great harvest under our belt!
We’re getting thirsty just reading this delectable review of our 2013 Amici Pinot Noir, from Frederic Koeppel of the “Bigger Than Your Head” wine blog:
“An enticing bouquet of black and red cherries and raspberries is suffused with subtle notes of cloves and sandalwood, blueberries and rhubarb and a tantalizing hint of cocoa powder. This pinot noir is super satiny and supple on the palate, mixing ripe, spicy and moderately juicy black and red berry flavors with undertones of loam, briers and brambles and a touch of heather. While moving through the mouth with sensual allure, this pinot noir is neither opulent or obvious, letting its energy — propelled by brisk acidity and slightly dusty tannins — dictate a more delicate, elegant and nuanced approach.” Yum. Go ahead, grab a bottle. It’s 5 o’clock somewhere, right?
How’s this for a creative and tasty pairing idea: Olema Pinot Noir with homemade chicken nuggets. These aren’t any soggy Mickey-D nuggets, this scrumptious recipe from Kristin Eddy of the Tribune News Service features buttermilk chicken breasts tossed in fresh breadcrumbs and parmesan, and baked in the oven. She recommends pairing the nuggets with our Olema Pinot Noir. We’d say that’s a real “Happy Meal!”
We’re excited to share our big news: winemaking veteran Tony Biagi has joined Amici as our Consulting Winemaker. Tony has decades of experience working with some of the most prestigious labels in the Napa Valley, and we’re delighted to have him on board to lend his expertise to Amici. Tony will be working closely with Amici Winemaker Bobby Donnell. On a personal level, he fits in to our group of amici like he’s always been part of the gang. “What I’m most excited about is to be joining such a wonderful extended team that’s already in place,” he says of Amici. “There’s such a supportive atmosphere, it’s really a family feeling.” If you’d like to know more about Tony and his background, check out his bio on our website.
Tony came on board just in time to throw himself into the harvest. We kicked off our harvest season on August 14 with Sauvignon Blanc, about two weeks ahead of usual, and things are looking great. It’s a smaller yielding harvest than the past two years, but quality is excellent. Hear Consulting Winemaker Tony Biagi discuss this year’s harvest with Amici Winemaker Bobby Donnell:
We toasted the start of Harvest 2015 on the morning of Friday, August 14 with a load of Sauvignon Blanc from St. Helena. Our mild winter has harvest arriving about three weeks earlier than normal, but the grapes are looking beautiful so we’re expecting an excellent quality vintage. Stay tuned!
Last night we had the pleasure of hosting about 60 wine experts from Total Wine & More stores across the country. They had a chance to try all of our current releases, get a sneak preview of some upcoming releases, and a few library wines were thrown into the mix as well. Then we all enjoyed dinner under the oak trees on a warm evening with the sunset lighting up the Palisades mountains behind us. As aways, a great night with our friends from Total Wine!
You asked for it, you got it! After many requests, we are happy to announce Amici’s new wine club, or, as we like to think of our members, “Friends with Benefits.” Enjoy the perks of friendship with shipments of special wines not always available to the general public, including pre-release, library and limited-production wines directly from the winery. Members also enjoy many advantages reserved for our inner circle of friends, listed below.
We offer three tiers of membership, geared towards your specific tastes:
A mix of white and red wines chosen from our Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc.
6 bottle ~ $210
Amici Reserve and Vineyard Designate Wines
A mix of white and red wines chosen from our Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc Reserves and Singe Vineyards.
6 bottle ~ $500
Amici Reserve and Vineyard Designate Red Wines
A mix of red wines chosen from our Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir Reserves and Single Vineyards.
6 bottle ~ $745
Members of each club enjoy the following perks and features:
- Three shipments annually comprised of Amici wines specially chosen based on your Membership level
- Access to new vintages before these wines are released to the public
- Complimentary tastings at Amici Cellars (advanced reservations required)
- Collectible recipe cards in each shipment paired specifically with Amici wines
- Invitations to exclusive events at the winery
- $10 ground shipping on orders of 6 bottles or more
For our “Something More” and “Confidant” Club members, the relationship has even deeper meaning:
- Private wine tasting for members and up to seven guests with cheese pairing (advanced reservations required)
- Special access to our library wines and large format bottles
- Preferred pricing and early enrollment for Amici events and classes at the winery
We welcome you to join us as an Amici friend…with benefits!
Saturday saw yet another record-setting year at Premiere Napa Valley, for both the auction overall, and for our own Amici lot. The highly anticipated auction, which brings hundreds of wine industry trade visitors to the Napa Valley every February, brought in $6 million in a fun afternoon of excitement and heated bidding. Amici’s offering, a 5-case lot from a single barrel of 2013 Missouri Hopper Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, went for a healthy sum of $32,000, which amounts to more than $533 per bottle (the auction’s average price per bottle was $286). The Missouri Hopper Vineyard on the Oakville Bench is one of Napa’s oldest vineyards and consistently produces premium, world-class Cabernet. Tasters of Amici’s lot Saturday were wowed by a stunning, age-worthy wine that showed rich and complex layers of dark cherry, cassis and mocha.
There was much excitement Saturday about the quality of the 2013 vintage as visitors spent the morning sampling the auction wines in the barrel room at the Greystone Culinary Institute of America. Some tasters extolled the 2013s as “even better than 2012,” a vintage which is already widely regarded as extraordinary.
At the end of the day, vintners and attendees alike went home happy. Vintners were thrilled with the generosity of the bidders, whose funds raised will go to support the important work of the Napa Valley Vintners Association, and many of those bidders have some incredible one-of-a-kind lots of wine coming their way.
Bill St. John of the Chicago Tribune recently interviewed Joel Aiken about tannins: what they are, why they’re necessary in wine, and how a good winemaker manages them. The result is an excellent article which may teach something to even the most devoted wine aficionados. Here it is (view the entire article):
Continue reading here