Sonoma County vintners, grape growers to hold joint meeting

Growers, vintners to meet ?at Luther Burbank Center

Sonoma County Winegrowers and Sonoma County Vintners will hold a joint annual meeting on Jan. 16 at the Luther Burbank Center.

Over the past 28 years, the winegrower trade group has held its annual Dollar and Sense seminar and trade show to provide members with an overview of the wine market. The new year will have the vintner trade group collaborating for a joint meeting to provide a comprehensive overview of the local sector.

More than 600 people are expected for the event. For more information contact Alisha Basich at

Memorial service set for wine industry veteran on Jan. 11

A memorial service for longtime wine industry veteran Jim Caudill will be held on Jan. 11 at St. Helena United Methodist Church from ?11 a.m. to noon.

Caudill, a graduate of Wayne State University, died on Dec. 4. He was a well-liked communications professional who most recently worked at Treasury Wine Estates. He also had prior positions at The Hess Collection, Kendall-Jackson Wine Estates and Brown-Forman Corp.

There will be limited seating at the church, so visitors are asked to arrive by 10:50 a.m. A reception will follow at Chateau St. Jean Winery in Kenwood.

9 complete Lake County class ?to become master vignerons

Nine people have recently completed a development program in Lake County for experienced vineyard supervisors and foremen.

The workers were awarded with the credential of master vigneron, completing a yearlong Spanish-?language course that covers various aspects of the wine industry. The Lake County Winegrape Commission is a sponsor of the program.

Eighty-two supervisors and managers have gone through the course over the last eight years.

“The (course) connects our employees to a modern business environment. It creates a bond with the larger industry, and it gives them a perspective of their role in the larger purpose,” said Randy Krag, a former vineyard manager at Beckstoffer Vineyards who helped create the program.

Compiled by Bill Swindell. Submit items to

Bill Swindell

Business, Beer and Wine, The Press Democrat  

In the North Coast, we are surrounded by hundreds of wineries along with some of the best breweries, cidermakers and distillers. These industries produce an abundance of drinks as well as good stories – and those are what I’m interested in writing. I also keep my eye on our growing cannabis industry and other agricultural crops, which have provided the backbone for our food-and-wine culture for generations.

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