San Francisco Wine Event: Hi-Ho Rhone Rangers!

    The Rhône wine region in Southern France is situated in the Rhône river valley and produces numerous wines.

    Rhone Rangers San Francisco

    Rhone Rangers San FranciscoRhone Rangers, a non-profit dedicated to promoting American Rhone varietal wines, is riding into town. Its annual Grand Tasting and discussion panels which feature American wines inspired by the famous French wine region will be held at Fort Mason in San Francisco later this month. The event offers a combination of seminars, presentations and wine tastings over the course of two days.

    The Rhone Rangers dedicate themselves to the grapes whose ancestral home is in France’s Rhone Valley.

    The Rhône wine region in Southern France is situated in the Rhône river valley and produces numerous wines. The French government recognizes 22 varieties in the various appellations that comprise this large and diverse wine-growing region.

    The Rhône is generally divided into two sub-regions with distinct vinicultural traditions, the Northern Rhône (referred to in French as Rhône septentrional) and the Southern Rhône (in French Rhône méridional). The northern sub-region produces red wines from the Syrah grape, sometimes blended with white wine grapes, and white wines from Viognier grapes. The southern sub-region produces an array of red, white and rosé wines, often blends of several grapes such as in Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

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    A vineyard in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, in southern Rhône.
    A vineyard in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, in southern Rhône.

    Rhone Appellations (including Cote Rotie, Hermitage, Condrieu, Chateuneuf du Pape, Gigondas, Bandol, Cotes du Rhone and several others) each choose a different subset from the collection of grapes known (from their place of origin) as Rhone varietals.

    American Rhone-style wines are made from the same grapes that have flourished for centuries in France’s Rhone River Valley, and their growing popularity in the United States speaks to their versatility with food, wide range of rich flavors, and to the skills of American winemakers.

    The Rhone Rangers mission is to educate the public on Rhone varietal wine grapes grown in America and to promote the production and enjoyment of these wines, with emphasis on integration into our daily lives.

    For a wine to qualify as a “Rhone Rangers” wine, the winery must be a member of the organization and 75% of the wine’s content must include one or more of the twenty-two traditional Rhone grape varieties as approved by the French government for the wines of the Cotes du Rhone (including Petite Sirah/Durif).

    Rhone Rangers San Francisco Grand Tasting

    March 26-27

    Fort Mason, San Francisco


    Spend a weekend with the Rhone Rangers. The weekend pass ticket, new for 2011, includes tickets to all three educational seminars with early VIP admission (with the trade) to the Grand Tasting on Sunday. And the $150 price is a $40 savings over the price of the individual tickets. Winemaker dinner not included. Limited availability. TICKETS: $150/each.


    Sustainability has recently become a buzzword in the world of wine, but it has been an essential part of the practices of many Rhone Rangers wineries for decades. Join us for a discussion among sustainable, organic and biodynamic producers, and taste wines from each as we explore how and why Rhone producers sit at the forefront of sustainability in American wine. Participating wineries include: AmByth Estate, Bonny Doon Vineyard, J. Lohr, Landmark, Montemaggiore, Qupe and Terre Rouge. TICKETS: $45/each.

    Saturday, March 26, 2011, 2:45 PM – 4:00 PM. Seminar #2 – MOURVEDRE ON THE MOVE.

    Dark, brooding, meaty, loamy, and agreeable, Mourvedre is a grape for Rhone fanatics. Long known for its ability to add structure and age-worthiness to blends, American Rhone producers are pushing Mourvedre to new heights both on its own and in its traditional blending role. Taste six different Mourvedre-based wines from up and down the west coast — both varietals and as leading roles in blends — and learn why Mourvedre is on the move! Participating wineries incllude: CORE, David Girard, Folin Cellars, Kenneth Volk, Quivira, Tablas Creek and Tercero. TICKETS: $45/each.


    Our Saturday events conclude with more than 15 top Rhone Ranger wineries participating in a tasting of current and library releases, dinner with the winemakers and live auction at Dogpatch Studios, 991 Tennessee St in San Francisco. Catering will be provided by Girl & the Fig (the well-loved Sonoma food purveyor and restaurant, famous for its Rhone-Alone wine list). Two menu options: Crispy Duck Confit or for Vegetarians: Spring Pea Ravioli with Asparagus and Wild Mushrooms (choose your option when you purchase your ticket). Participating wineries include: Bonny Doon, Caliza, Clos Saron, Folin Cellars, J. Lohr, Kukkula, Landmark, Quady North, Quivira, Qupe, Ridge, Rock Wren Wines, Stolpman,Tablas Creek, Tarara, Terre Rouge, Terry Hoage, Thacher and Waterbrook. Proceeds benefit the Rhone Rangers Scholarship Fund. Attendance limited to 200. Seating with any particular winemaker is not guaranteed; winemakers will offer their wines to each table, giving everyone a chance to taste any wine offered that evening. Advance tickets only; no tickets available at the door. TICKETS: $125/each.

    Sunday, March 27, 2011, 11 AM – 12:30 PM. Seminar #3 – WILD WINES AND THE STORIES OF HOW THEY CAME TO BE.

    Whether it’s a 12% alcohol Syrah, a Viognier made with a month of skin contact, a Rhone blend made from grapes that European winemakers consider suitable only for blending, or a dessert wine made from air-dried Mourvedre, Rhone Rangers producers are pushing the envelope in a myriad of ways. Come taste these unusual wines from eight winemaking pioneers, as they share with you the inside stories on their wildest wines and how and why they headed off into uncharted territory. Participating wineries include: Big Basin Vineyards, Caliza, Clos Saron, Katin, Pax Mahle Wines, Stolpman, Tarara and Terry Hoage. Ticket includes VIP early admission (at 12 noon) to the Grand Tasting (along with invited members of the trade & media). TICKETS: $100/EACH.

    Sunday, March 27, 2011 2:00 – 5:00 PM. 14th ANNUAL RHONE RANGERS GRAND TASTING.

    The weekend culminates with the Grand Tasting, where over 2,000 people are expected to come taste over 500 wines from more than 100 Rhone Rangers wineries. For a list of participating wineries, click here. Sample gourmet foods from 25 or more specialty food purveyors, including cheese, bread, olive oil, charcuterie, fruits and other sweets and chocolates. A silent auction will feature Rhone Rangers wines and wine-related items; proceeds from the auction will benefit the Rhone Rangers Scholarship Fund. This event takes place at the Fort Mason Festival Pavilion. Come out for a great afternoon of wine, food and fun. TICKETS: $45/EACH.

    Rhone Rangers – Member Wineries

    10 Knots Cellars
    122 Degrees West Winery
    Adelaida Cellars
    Alta Colina
    AmByth Estate
    Andrew Murray Vineyards
    Arrowood Vineyards & Winery
    Arroyo Robles Winery
    Aver Family Vineyards
    Barrel 27 Wine Company
    Beckmen Vineyards
    Bella Vineyards and Wine Caves
    Big Basin Vineyards
    Bink Wines
    Black Sheep Winery
    Bogle Vineyards & Winery
    Bonny Doon Vineyard
    Calcareous Vineyard
    Caliza Winery
    Carina Cellars
    Cass Winery
    Chamisal Vineyards
    Chateau Ste. Michelle
    Chronic Cellars
    Clautiere Vineyards
    Clavo Cellars
    Clayhouse Wines
    Cliff Creek Cellars
    Cline Cellars
    Clos Saron
    Coiled Wines
    Columbia Crest
    Columbia Winery
    Concannon Vineyard
    Cosa Obra
    Crystal Basin
    Curtis Winery
    Cypher Winery
    D H Gustafson Family Vineyards
    David Girard Vineyards
    Delaplane Cellars
    Derby Wine Estates
    Dobbes Family Estate Winery
    Domaine Berrien Cellars
    Domaine Serene
    Doyenne & DeLille Cellars
    Eberle Winery Ltd.
    Ecluse Wines
    Edward Sellers Vineyards & Wines
    Eric Kent Wine Cellars
    Fess Parker Winery & Vineyards
    Fleming Jenkins Vineyards & Winery
    Folin Cellars
    Frick Winery
    Goedhart Family Winery
    Guy Riedel Wines LLC
    Hagafen Cellars
    Hahn Family Wines
    Halter Ranch Vineyard
    Harrison Clarke
    Henson Wines
    Holly’s Hill Vineyards
    J C Cellars
    J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines
    Jada Vineyard & Winery
    Justin Winery
    KATIN-JK Wine Co.
    Kenneth Volk Vineyards
    L’Aventure Winery
    Lagier Meredith Vineyard
    Landmark Vineyards
    Lange Twins Winery & Vineyards
    Lawer Family Winery
    Lone Madrone
    MacLaren Wine Company
    Maison Bleue Winery
    Martinelli Winery
    Meyer Family Cellars
    Michael-David Vineyards
    Michaud Vineyard
    Minassian-Young Vineyards
    Miner Family Winery
    Miraflores Winery
    Mitchella Vineyard & Winery
    Morgan Winery
    Niner Wine Estates
    Novy Family Winery
    Ortman Family Vineyards, LLC
    Oso Libre Winery
    Outpost Wines
    Paradise Vineyard
    Pear Valley Vineyard , Inc
    Pomar Junction Vineyard & Winery
    Pride Mountain Vineyards
    Prospect 772 Wine Company
    Proulx Wines
    Quady North
    Quivira Vineyards & Winery
    Renaissance Vineyard & Winery
    Ridge Vineyards
    Robert Hall Winery
    Rocca Family Vineyards
    Rock Wren Winery
    Rosenblum Cellars
    Saarloos and Sons
    Sarah’s Vineyard
    Sawtooth Winery
    Sierra Vista Winery
    Skinner Vineyards
    Skylark Wine Co.
    Sol Rouge
    Spangler Vineyards
    Stage Left Cellars
    Stark Wine
    Steele Wines
    Stolpman Vineyards
    Stonehedge Winery
    Summerwood Winery
    Tablas Creek Vineyard
    Tarara Winery
    Tercero Wines
    Terre Rouge
    Terry Hoage Vineyards
    Thacher Winery
    Travieso Winery
    Treana Winery
    Truchard Vineyards
    Unti Vineyards
    Valley of the Moon Winery
    Ventana Vineyards & Winery
    Venteux Vineyards
    Veritas Vineyard & Winery
    Villa Creek Cellars
    Vina Robles
    Vines on the Marycrest
    Waterbrook Winery
    Wild Horse Winery
    Wind Gap Wines
    Zaca Mesa Winery
    Zenaida Cellars

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