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In the three years since I started WINEormous, I’ve attended numerous wine tastings. I have enjoyed them all, but there are some that stand out from the crowd. Family Winemakers of California is one of those events. Earlier this month we went to the Fairgrounds Del Mar for our 3rd visit to this amazing event. Just a glance at the lineup and you know you’re in for a serious afternoon. Media and buyers gain early admission before the event is open to the general public. With approximately 200 family owned wineries represented, the three hours fly past. We do get a chance though, to taste some exceptional wines and meet with the people responsible for them.

Of all the wines I tasted, the barrel sample of 2010 Pinot Noir from Frostwatch Vineyard & Winery blew me away. I had a nice visit with owner and winemaker Brett Raven and wound up ordering a case of this wine at a special futures offering. Trust me, that’s rare for me. It was good to see Kristian Story and Antonia Quast from Kristian Story Wines, Neil Roberts from Clavo Cellars, Dalia and Amelia Ceja from Ceja Vineyards and so many others I have come to know over the past few years.

If you missed Family Winemakers this time around, I encourage you to join them at Fort Mason in San Francisco on September 9, or next year in Del Mar or Pasadena.

Dalia and Amelia Ceja

Kristian Story and Antonia Quast

Chris Connolly - Les Deux Chats

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