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Wine Speak Returns with Robust Slate of Winemaker Seminars

Submitted By: Christopher Weir, December 04, 2018
A robust slate of winemaker panels, expert seminars, technical winery tours and special tastings is set to headline the next “Wine Speak Paso Robles” on January 7-10, 2019.

“We have worked hard to ensure that Wine Speak 2019 will be a step forward with dynamic speakers, topics and tastings, but our aim remains the same: to create a premier experience for wine industry professionals to grow and learn together,” said Amanda Wittstrom-Higgins, Ancient Peaks Winery’s VP of operations who co-founded Wine Speak with master sommelier Chuck Furuya.

Wine Speak is a trade-focused event led by an all-star cast of master sommeliers, winemakers and hospitality professionals. The 2019 edition follows the inaugural Wine Speak held last January, which was met with widespread acclaim.

Highlights for Wine Speak 2019 include:

Winemaker Seminars

Winemaker seminars will be presented on January 8-9 at the historic Atascadero City Hall building in the Paso Robles wine country. “We have created a ‘dream team’ of panelists featuring New World game changers of our time,” Furuya said. “It’s a rare gathering of this kind of talent.” Seminars include:

“Cabernet Sauvignon: Perspectives from Inside & Outside The Appellation” (Eric Jensen of Booker and My Favorite Neighbor; Helen Keplinger of Carte Blanche and Keplinger; Fred Dame, MS of DAOU; and Fred Scherrer of Scherrer Winery)

“Rhône Renegades: Mourvèdre” (Greg Harrington, MS of Gramercy Cellars and Cris Cherry of Villa Creek) and “Grenache” (Justin Smith of Saxum and Richard Betts, MS of Sucette wines)

“What Syrah Can Be—Chapter 2” (Bob Lindquist of Qupe; Pax Mahle of Pax Wines; and Jason Drew of Drew wines).

“The State of Zinfandel” (Matt Trevisan of Linne Calodo and Fred Scherrer of Scherrer Winery)

Technical Tours

The event kicks off on January 7 with technical winery tours—one focused on Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux varieties (featuring Austin Hope Vineyard, Niner Wine Estates, and DAOU Vineyards & Winery), the other revolving around Rhône varieties (featuring Epoch Estate Wines, Caliza Winery and TH Estate Wines). These winemaker-led tours will delve into the philosophies, methods and technologies that are driving next-level quality.

Panels & Experiences

Additional experiences will include a “Talk Story” roundtable on the influence and future of women in wine, to be steered by leading industry professionals on January 8. A hands-on wine blending seminar will follow on January 9, along with a “Paso Paired” luncheon featuring four acclaimed local wines paired by longtime sommelier and SOMM Journal editor-at-large Randy Caparoso with dishes from Chef Cheyne Jackson of The Range. Legendary master sommelier Fred Dame of DAOU will be the keynote speaker.

Public Grand Tasting

During the “Taste of Paso Robles” Grand Tasting on the evening of January 8, wine enthusiasts will rub shoulders with industry luminaries while enjoying offerings from a “who’s who” list of Paso Robles wineries and local eateries. Leading local chefs will present wine-friendly small plates and winemakers will showcase some of their finest reserve and library bottlings.

Hospitality Day

Hospitality Day on January 10 aims to impart tangible examples and skills that business owners and hospitality professionals can use to grow their success and build loyal followings. Dynamic hospitality professionals will lead seminars on wine service (featuring master sommeliers Fred Dame, Nunzio Alioto and Chuck Furuya), interior design and digital marketing. The day will conclude with “Aloha Spirit & Branding,” a seminar providing insights into the award-winning hospitality culture of Hawaiian Airlines.

Tickets for any and all of the above experiences may be purchased at WineSpeakPaso.com.

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