Petaluma Gap nonprofit group elects new officers

The members of the Petaluma Gap Winegrowers Alliance have elected new officers to the nonprofit group as it prepares to have its wine region officially recognized by the federal government.

Rickey Trombetta Stancliff, of Trombetta Family Winery in Forestville, will be its president; Justin Seidenfeld of Rodney Strong Vineyards and Winery in Healdsburg, will become its vice president; Kathleen Doyle, a Petaluma accountant will be its treasurer; and Kathy O’Donnell, a marketing professor at San Francisco State University, will serve as secretary.

The group was founded in 2005 to promote grape growers and vintners within the area, which stretches across the southern part of Sonoma County and is known for its cool coastal air moving east between mountain gaps.

The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau is considering an application from the group to designate the region as an American Viticultural Area, which will allow wine companies to put “Petaluma Gap” on their labels.

Women-focused wine event to be held in Napa

The third annual Women of the Vine & Spirits Global Symposium will be held March 13 to 15 at the Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa.

The speakers at the event include Gina Gallo, senior director of winemaking of E&J Gallo Winery, and Annette Alvarez-Peters, vice president of beverage alcohol for Costco Wholesale Corp.

The wine industry has a major focus on female consumers because women account for 57 percent of wine volume in the United States, according to research firm Nielsen.

For more information, visit womenofthevine.com.

Total number of US wineries reaches record

The total number of U.S. wineries and bonded wine cellars reached a record level of 11,095 during the 2016 fiscal year, according to the federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.

The vast majority of those vintners were classified as small wineries — producing less than 250,000 wine gallons annually — at 10,889, or 98 percent, according to the agency. Since 2012, the volume of wineries has increased by 30 percent. By contrast, the number of breweries during the same time period increased 140 percent to a total of 7,039.

Compiled by Bill Swindell. Submit items to bill.swindell@pressdemocrat.com.