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JONATA – Matt Dees Interview

Recently, our friends at cdsavoia came to visit the Jonata Ranch and made a movie about it. If you have not seen their site, you should, it is full of great stuff. cdsavoia.com

The Princes of West Paso {Matt Trevisan & Justin Smith}

This is arguably the biggest week of the year for Paso Robles, Hospice du Rhône, a weekend-long celebration of all things Rhône; a week that will see the World’s best Rhône producers flock to the sleepy Central Coast town. Thousands of their disciples will descend from all over the Country to this Mecca of Syrah, [...]

SAXUM {deeper roots}

SAXUM, it’s obvious right? I am a glory seeker; I am Napoleon, motivated by my own lust for recognition. I search out the best, the finest; I am Alexander, an elitist, a snob, a name-dropper of the worst kind, eager to pat myself on the back, and exalt my own voice. I walk around with a sense [...]

Linne Calodo – The Harvest {Photo Essay}

2011 took us many places. While the travel schedule was less hectic than 2010′s 5,000+ mile marathon, we still did our fair share of road miles and met numerous interesting people. From meeting three cult icons of California wine (I have yet to write about two of them) in the same week, to being on [...]

Recent Articles:

ALPHipsta – {The Photos}

April 16, 2012 The Press 4 Comments
ALPHipsta – {The Photos}

So this blows my mind a bit, over 100 entries! *UPDATE, 160 ENTRIES!* From all over too, the U.S., Mexico, France, New Zealand, Uruguay, Italy, the Netherlands. I didn’t have time to put a name on each one yet, but hover over them with your cursor and the name will pop up. I am still missing a few images and please feel free to email me if you don’t see yours, alongpour@gmail.com

Keep them coming, you have until Midnight tonight to get them in!

 

-Wayne

… Continue Reading

A Long Pour {The Photo Contest!}

March 28, 2012 The Press 9 Comments
A Long Pour {The Photo Contest!}

We always envisioned A Long Pour as a space where we can support people, not just objects. I am proud of the work we have done in creating a project that speaks to the passions of people rather than trivial criticisms.

For us, the visual image is just as important to our stories as the words. Sometimes, the best way to tell a story is to attempt to do so in pictures.

These days, there are many amazing tools to help us do that. One of those amazing tools is Hipstamatic, an app for the iPhone. What we love about Hipstamatic is the analog approach to a digital medium. Like traditional film, there is some thought that goes into it. Unlike other apps that let you edit an image after taking it, Hipstamatic requires some creative thought. What lens will I use? What film? What combinations work best for this situation? The results are often unexpected and incredibly beautiful.

… Continue Reading

Quit WINEing {the interview}

February 22, 2012 The Press 10 Comments
Quit WINEing {the interview}

It takes a lot of energy and patience to find those special wines in a sea of mediocrity and the same can be said for the “wine blog.” If you are anything like me (which isn’t likely because you are reading this, and I don’t know how to read), you have little time to keep up with everything you would like to. When I can make time to catch up on some online reading, I spend my time with those who have fresh ideas, a fresh voice, or a fresh approach.

So I was thrilled the day I stumbled on Quit WINEing. Author Courtney Rich knows few boundaries in expressing her zeal for wine. Her style and attention to the visual details is unmatched, but she has more than creative zeal. A certified Sommelier, Courtney backs up her flare for the bizarre with classic wine knowledge. She isn’t just scooping something off a shelf and giving it a badge, or smiley face, or whatever, these are thoughtful (but fun) musings on wine from a serious wine advocate, with a not so serious self-image. … Continue Reading

SAXUM {deeper roots}

February 16, 2012 Fifty-Two Weeks 1 Comment
SAXUM {deeper roots}

SAXUM, it’s obvious right? I am a glory seeker; I am Napoleon, motivated by my own lust for recognition. I search out the best, the finest; I am Alexander, an elitist, a snob, a name-dropper of the worst kind, eager to pat myself on the back, and exalt my own voice. I walk around with a sense of self-entitlement fit for a king and look down upon man as though I were David’s Goliath.

It is the same for Justin Smith you say, the golden boy of California wine, the charmer, the handsome forty-something behind Saxum. He who has schemed to unlock the magic formula that forces the palates of the World’s best critics prostrate in obeisance to his miracle juice. He who influences their pens with his smooth lips to write the shockingly high numbers of their tasting notes, to write the impossible three digit perfection as if they had wine scoring turrets. He has cast a spell on the wine world and his potion is Bone Rock, Broken Stones, and Rocket Block.

In some ways it is true I suppose. I have sought out some of the best in this game, the most interesting, the most passionate, the most gifted. But they are also the most genuine, people of class and substance, people with real stories.

And what an honor it is to tell those stories.

It is also true, Justin Smith is a charmer. You can’t help but like him. But if you strip away the hype and fade the endless praise and criticism into the background, if you stand there with Justin, in his jeans, v-neck, Patagonia vest, and flip flops and if you listen to him talk, to what he really has to say, it all comes down to a simple sentence:

Justin Smith is a farmer. … Continue Reading

In Thanks to Ground Effect Wine

January 26, 2012 The Press Comments Off
In Thanks to Ground Effect Wine

There are a few moments in our travels over the last 27 months that have changed everything for us, our perspective, our vision, our goals.

Jason Haas at Tablas Creek, Adam Tolmach of The Ojai Vineyard, my initial visit to Jordan Winery, Matthias Pippig, Randall Grahm, Matt Trevisan. Sometimes it was the people, sometimes the vineyards, but all of them changed our way of thinking in one way or another and we are thankful for it.

There is one other name on that list that I might possibly put at the very top. He, through the thoughtfulness of his words, the clarity of his vision, and the character of his heart, has shown us, has shown me a new way, the way I wish all people could see wine. Beyond the big picture, beyond a product, there is the infinite immenseness that is all the small things, of the earth, of the soil, of the plants and bugs, of the terroir. It is these things he has encouraged me to see, to try to find.

His name is Nick de Luca, and he is Ground Effect Wine. … Continue Reading

Vintage 2011 in Review {Wherein I Brag a Bit}

December 28, 2011 The Press 1 Comment
Vintage 2011 in Review {Wherein I Brag a Bit}

The Best Things that Happened to A Long Pour this Year:

In no particular order, here are the best things that happened to A Long Pour this year, some of which has already appeared on ALP. … Continue Reading

Linne Calodo – The Harvest {Photo Essay}

December 15, 2011 Fifty-Two Weeks Comments Off
Linne Calodo – The Harvest {Photo Essay}

2011 took us many places. While the travel schedule was less hectic than 2010′s 5,000+ mile marathon, we still did our fair share of road miles and met numerous interesting people.

From meeting three cult icons of California wine (I have yet to write about two of them) in the same week, to being on hand for the naming ceremony of Popelouchum, Randall Grahm’s new vineyard, our experiences were wide and varied. While we try to experience as much as we can in this industry, there were a few experiences that stood out from the year.

One was night harvesting Pinot Noir under a nearly full moon at Clos Pepe with Wes Hagen. Their Sta. Rita Hills estate has become a special place for us and it was a real eye opener to actually get our hands dirty and fill-up some buckets with delicious tiny grapes. I only wish I had pictures, but we were working, not shooting.

… Continue Reading

Linne Calodo Part II {The Pieces}

December 7, 2011 Fifty-Two Weeks 2 Comments
Linne Calodo Part II {The Pieces}

So I got a tad gushy the other week about Matt Trevisan of Linne Calodo. I don’t regret it. Matt is a rather wonderful kind of a guy and one of the most impressive winemakers I know. But rather than recap all of the reasons we’re impressed with him (which are many and were well documented here), let’s just sum it up by saying: we like him.

Setting out to document what makes a winemaker is a daunting task. Sometimes the people we work with are well known, like Randall Grahm of Bonny Doon, a celebrity in his own right. In such a case, one can skip a deep treatise into the history of the winery and get right to something of interest, say marketing and why it is like crack cocaine. In other instances, the subject winery was relatively unknown to us prior to our visit with them, like Pfendler. In this case, you must first explain their story before you can explain the wine.

With Linne Calodo, it was a bit different. On the one hand, Linne Calodo and even Matt Trevisan, have become synonymous with one of the greatest wine movements in the United States. Still, in my research there wasn’t much in print on Matt, the person. When speaking with others within the industry about Matt, in advance of our visits, they had little more to offer than a few rumors and some nice accolades for his wines. People love the wine, but they didn’t seem to know much about Matt other than the fact he is “kind of quiet.” … Continue Reading

Linne Calodo – Names Will Never Hurt Me

October 19, 2011 Fifty-Two Weeks 7 Comments
Linne Calodo – Names Will Never Hurt Me

T H E   L I S T

It was the end of 2009 and the beginning of an ambitious project, to write about 52 California wineries in 52 weeks. I had no idea where to start.

I bought a subscription to Wine Spectator and scoured it for interesting producers to work with; highlighting the ones that caught my attention. Tablas Creek, Barrel 27, Foxen, Kosta Brown. I added them to an ever-growing list of “wineries to work with.” I knew almost nothing about the California wine industry, but if this big glossy publication liked them, that had to be worth something, right?

As my knowledge grew in early 2010, I began adding names to an “if by a miracle” list, wineries I thought it would be next to impossible to work with, legends like Ridge, The Ojai Vineyard, Sine Qua Non, and Harlan. A boy could dream.

In the months that followed, as A Long Pour took shape and I began to regularly cross off names from the “hope to work with” and add them to the “worked with” list, I was amazed at how well it was all going. Tablas Creek, check! The Ojai Vineyard, a very excited check! Barrel 27, Foxen, Jordan, check, check, and check!

I studied, I learned, I listened, and I drank. I stopped highlighting names in Wine Spectator and began working with wineries based on my own taste and interests.  I made the acquaintance of numerous winemakers who in turn gave me suggestions of their own. I took note of who inspired them, names like Randall Grahm, Richard Sanford, Paul Draper, John Alban, Helen Turley, Manfred Krankl, Justin Smith, and Matt Trevisan. … Continue Reading

The Regions – Way Back In {July}

September 28, 2011 The Regions 1 Comment
The Regions – Way Back In {July}

So things change in a few month’s time.

We moved… again, into a different beach place much like the old beach place one (small first floor of a two-story house with a yard). Our friends vacated it when they moved to China for a year to check that out. It was a killer deal, so we packed up and came a few miles north.

… Continue Reading

{Archives}

Bonny Doon: Day of the Doon IX {Photo Essay}

September 22, 2011

Bonny Doon: Day of the Doon IX {Photo Essay}

We have grown rather accustomed to long trips for short stays, so much so that a 500 mile weekend is not such a big deal anymore. There are a lot of events we are invited to and we can only attend a few of them. But when Randall Graham asks you to attend, you attend. [...]

Secret Project {the reveal}

August 17, 2011

Secret Project {the reveal}

A few weeks ago I posted the “Secret Project” with some shots of  a friend’s new winery taking shape. At the time, the space was still in a raw state, holes in the ground, bare walls, cut concrete. In terms of photographing a new winery, one might say there was not much to see, no [...]

{People We Like}

Studio Holladay
Municipal Winemakers
Kunin Wines