Tasting Room: Peg Melnik's wine blog

Greg Graziano has deep roots in the world of winemaking, ones that reach back three generations.

The vintner began toiling in the vines at a young age so it’s not surprising Graziano is behind our wine-of-the-week winner — the Enotria, 2014 Mendocino County Arneis, 13.5%, $15.

The arneis is a refreshing quaffer with spicy floral notes. On the palate, it has flavors of pear, apple, anise and almond. It has a nice undercurrent of mineral, and it’s well-crafted with an intensity of layered flavors.

“We were one of the first to produce arneis in California back in 1992, so we have had many years to work with this difficult Italian grape,” Graziano said. “Its name comes from the Piemontese dialect meaning the “little difficult one” or the “rascal.”

The rascal requires a lot of crop management in the vineyard to control its vigor because it’s a bountiful producer, Graziano said. It’s also temperamental.

“It rots and sunburns easily so the amount of light the fruit receives is all important,” he said. “One thing that sets our wine apart from many Italian versions is the intense fruit character and richness in the wine. It processes an almost aged riesling-like floral spiciness.”

The climate in Mendocino is well-suited for Arneis, Graziano explained. It has poor soils, high altitude, cool nights and warm days which help the grapes ripen later in the season so the aromas and flavors have a long time to develop.

“Having a long experience with many different white Italian grape varieties has helped me regulate and guide the wine to its full potential,” Graziano said. “For years we purchased grapes from Lowell Stone’s Fox Hill Vineyard in the Ukiah Valley. We now grow our own at the headwaters of the Russian River in high elevation Potter Valley, which has a great climate for Arneis.”

Graziano wishes Arneis had a bigger following.

“It’s a cult wine with a small but dedicated group of oenophiles, who appreciate such an unusual and stellar variety, much like who adore riesling.”

Graziano, 61, studied at UC Davis, and founded his first winery, Milano, in 1977 when he was 21. Later, in 1988 he founded Graziano Family of Wines. He has been at home in the wine business. His family has been Mendocino wine growers for 99 years, with its first vineyard planted in 1918.

“It was never in doubt that I would be a winegrower like my father and grandfather,” he said.

All About Quakes

5 Things to Do When The Shaking Starts

- Duck, cover, hold: Duck or drop down on the floor, take cover under a sturdy desk or table and hold on. Be prepared to move with it.

- If indoors, stay there: At least, until the shaking stops. If you’re outside, find a clear spot away from buildings, trees and power lines and drop to the ground. If you’re in a car, slow down and drive to a clear place.

- After the shaking stops: Get to a safe place outdoors if you think the structure you’re in is in danger of collapsing. Provide first aid for anyone slightly injured and seek medical attention for anyone seriously injured.

- Assume there will be aftershocks: Secure anything heavy that could fall, and eliminate fire hazards.

- Gas and water: Listen to the radio for instructions regarding turning off gas and water. If you smell gas, or think it is leaking, shut it off. Only a professional should turn it back on.


6 Things To Now To Prepare For A Disaster

- Contacting loved ones: Create a plan for how you will contact one another after the quake, such as establishing an out-of-area contact who can help coordinate the locations of family members and other information should you become separated. Make sure children learn these phone numbers and addresses and know the emergency plans.

- Important papers: Keep copies of important documents at the house of your out-of-area contact or keep important documents and valuables in a fireproof storage box or safe deposit box.

- Disaster supplies kit: Keep a smaller version in your vehicle. Families with children should have each child create their own personal pack.

- Know evacuation routes: Establish several different routes in case certain roads are blocked or closed.

- Plan for pets: Animals are typically not allowed in places where food is served, so you will need to have a place to take your pets if you have to go to a shelter.

- Don’t run out of gas: Always run on the top half of the tank, not on the bottom half.

Things To Remember

Water may be in short supply.

Natural gas and electric power may be out for days or weeks.

Garbage and sewage services may be interrupted.

Telephone, Internet, cell phone, and wireless communications may be overloaded or unavailable.

Mail service may be disrupted or delayed.

Gasoline may be in short supply, and rationing may be necessary.

Bank operations may be disrupted, limiting access to cash, ATMs, or online banking.

Grocery, drug, and other retail stores may be closed or unable to restock shelves. Businesses may sustain damage and disruption—many small businesses require a long time to reopen or do not survive disasters.

Your income may be affected — payroll checks or direct deposits may be delayed.

For more information, go here

Source: County of Sonoma