Wine Press FINAL 10-14-10

March 16, 2013


             NY Drinks NY, a new WineAmerica, Monterey Gold, and heart-healthy resveratrol.  Who says there's no good news?



             Jim Trezise

New York Drinks New York--Big Time


             The second annual NY Drinks NY Grand Tasting, on Monday at Astor Center in lower Manhattan, is shaping up to exceed the great success of last year's event, with the consumer event sold out a couple weeks ago, and strong interest among trade and media, who receive invitations for tastings all the time and are therefore selective in choosing those to attend. 

              It's first and foremost a tribute to the grape growers and wine makers for producing high quality wines that now earn respect around the globe.  It's also attributable to the incredible buzz about that quality--from many regions with many grape varieties--and the superb work of First Press Publc Relations, which has been orchestrating our program for the past 15 months.

               Monday's event will include 40 wineries and about 200 wines, along with New York-origin foods prepared by the New York Wine & Culinary Center in Canandaigua, the northwest gateway to the Finger Lakes region.  Three seminars for the press and trade will also be conducted on Riesling (Thomas Pastuszak, Wine Director at NoMad), Sparkling Wines (Linda Lawry, Director of the International Wine Center), and Aged Reds (Jim Clarke, Wine Director at Armani Restaurant).

                The Grand Tasting is the final and signature event in our "exchange program" which involves New York City wine writers, sommeliers, and wine store managers visiting the wine regions, followed by winery representaties spending time in The Big Apple conducting in-store tastings, winemakers dinners, and pouring at the Grand Tasting.

                The entire program is sponsored by the New York Wine & Grape Foundation and is made possible by a grant from the Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority with support from the NewYork State Department of Agriculture & Markets.                         

 New Era for WineAmerica


               WineAmerica, the national organization of American wineries, now has new leadership in the form of Executive Director Mark Chandler, a veteran trade association executive, former winery manager, and active wine grape grower in northern California.

                About a year ago, WineAmerica's Board of Directors created a strategic plan with many components, including finding the right person to take the organization to the next level.  I chaired a search committee which reviewed several applicants before recommending Mark as the most qualified candidate, and the Board agreed.

                Trade association management, and especially leadership, requires a special combination of experience, commitment, and personality.  For the past 20 years, Mark was Executive Director of the Lodi-Woodbridge Winegrape Commission, which transformed that region from an unknown backwater into a highly respected appellation.  An important part of that success was also a strong Board of Directors, which WineAmerica now has as well.  The other WineAmerica staff members, Michael Kaiser and Tara Good, will continue making their excellent contributions to the cause.  (Cary Greene, who served as COO and General Counsel, is returning to private law practice but will continue for a couple months as temporary legal counsel.)

                  WineAmerica is our protector, defender, and advocate in Washington.  With over 500 wineries from 48 states, it has the potential to be a unifying force and the source of grassroots political action.  That potential has never been realized, but that is going to change.  In addition, WineAmerica offers numerous affinity programs that offer tangible benefits to members.

                   Every winery in New York, and in other states as well, should be a member of WineAmerica.  (


Sister Wineries Score Big in California

                 Goose Watch Winery, Penguin Bay Winery, and Swedish Hill Winery are all owned by the Peterson family, and all regularly win Gold medals and top awards in major wine competitions. (Just visit New York Gold on to see how often they're listed.)

                 Most recently, two of the wineries won three Double Gold and four Gold medals at the Monterey (CA)  Wine Competition.  The Double Golds went to Goose Watch Classic Cream Sherry and 2011 Traminette, and Swedish Hill 2011 Riesling, with Gold medals for Goose Watch Golden Spumante, and Swedish Hill Viking Red, Blanc de Blancs, and 2011 Dry Riesling.

                 Coming up next is the great Finger Lakes International Wine Competition ( where New York wines always shine among over 3,000 entries.  Stay tuned.

Resveratrol Rocks

           Resveratrol has long been cited as the key component in red wine that benefits cardiovascular health by dozens of peer-reviewed scientific studies from around the world.  But a new study conducted by Harvard Medical School and published in Science provides major breakthroughs in understanding how resveratrol works to keep cells healthy, which in turn is a big step toward developing effective drugs to treat diabetes, cancer, and other diseases.

           Senior study author David Sinclair, PhD, called it "the killer experiment"  because it verified that resveratrol was the sole source of the benefits; identified the exact location of a protein (SIRT1) which helps fuel the power-producing parts of cells that fight age-related illnesses like cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes; and will allow the development of new treatments.  In effect, resveratrol helps to slow aging.

            Resveratrol is a naturally occurring fungicide on the skins of grapes to help ward off plant disease, and is also the most potent naturally occuring chemical for combatting heart disease.  It is found predominantely in red wine because of the prolonged skin contact in producing it, whereas white wines with virtually no skin contact contain very little.  Years ago, former Cornell researcher Dr. Le Creasy showed that red wines from humid winegrowing regions like the Finger Lakes generally contain more resveratoral than those from dry regions because more resveratrol is needed to protect the grapes during the growing season.

             Oh, and by the way, chocolate also contains resveratrol.  Who says there's no good news?



 "Wine is at the head of all medicines; where wine is lacking, drugs are necessary." 

                                                           -- Talmud

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