Co-Authored by Jenny Garza – There was a double dose of delight when two very famous family run wineries, Hook & Ladder and Delicato, agreed to host the SSU Winesense Tasting this past week. Over 40 students showed up to listen to the presentations, taste some exciting California wines, and enjoy appetizers prepared by the SSU Winesense Board of Directors.
Joshua Deloach Tells Story of Hook & Ladder Winery
Hook & Ladder Winery, located in the Russian River AVA, is known for handcrafted small lots and specializes in pinot noir and zinfandel. Joshua DeLoach of Hook & Ladder gave an inspired summary of his family’s long history in the winemaking business, and poured several beautiful wines, which he emphasized, are “not-for-mass-distribution” specialties.
Joshua described the family background in fire fighting – thus the name “Hook & Ladder” – and explained that they are trying to produce “the next generation of Russian River Valley Wines,” with a fresh fruit forward style. Everyone enjoyed the two wines he brought: Handcraft California Chardonnay 2011 and the Noble Vines 667 Monterey Pinot Noir.
Liz Rice of Delicato Family Vineyards Provides Career Advice on International Wine Sales
Delicato Family Vineyards, one of the 10 largest wineries in the US with extensive vineyards across California, was represented by SSU Wine Business graduate, Ms. Liz Rice. While finishing her classes at SSU in 2003, Liz started an internship at Delicato in their Napa offices and was offered a full-time job upon graduation. She has continued to work at the company for the past 10 years, being promoted first to wine sales and marketing manager for Canada, and several years ago being promoted to Wine Sales Manager for all of Europe.
Liz was also one of the founding members of the SSU WineSense Club, and was very excited to come back to SSU after a decade of traveling the world with Delicato, and share some of their exquisite wines. The group enjoyed tasting: Gnarly Head California Viognier 2011, 2011, Brazin Lodi Old Vine Zinfandel 2010, Gnarly Head California Petite Sirah 2010, and Black Stallion Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2010.
Liz also described her job living in London and traveling to countries around Europe to market and sell Delicato wines. She explained differences in culture, regulations, and taste profiles in the different countries, and encouraged the students to consider international wine sales if they want an exciting career.
Favorite Wines of the Evening