David Coffaro Vineyard and Winery Winemaker's Diary

Week 3
January 12, 2003 to January 18, 2003 

Wednesday January 15, 2003
  Our new updated 2002 Futures form is ready for any of you to scrutinize. We have now finished blending and the percentages of the varietals appearing on the form will probably be the the final totals you will see on our label. The main differences you may have noticed from earlier forms are small, but should please many of you. I have decided to make three 100% varietals. These are Estate Carignan, as well as Bennett Valley Syrah and Pinot Noir. We will be open this Saturday for the WinterWine Land event serving these wines for the first time. Sunday I will be at the Raider game.

Some of you know I am a huge Oakland Raider fan. I know many of you have wondered why I have not mentioned the Raiders all season. Seriously, for me, it was easier to write about them when they were not doing well. Remember when I used to write about how bad they were and how disappointing their loses were for Kate, my Daughter, and I. I hate the word "Gloat" and this is the first time I have used it in writing or speech. I also despise anyone who gloats or brags about anything. Yes, I am happy the Raiders are doing well again, but I am not going to rub it in to fans of other football teams. 

I would like to mention a little more of what I have found out about TCA. I have mentioned that we have found a small amount of TCA taint in two of our 1997 and 1998 wines bottled with Altec corks. I have found out that this amount 3 to 4 parts per trillion is so small that most people can not smell or taste it. To me, I would describe it as a slight metallic taste. As I have said neither Pat or Brendan found this small amount offensive. I have heard of amounts of 100 times more, departing a smell of damp newspapers.  I can tell a difference in our wines with Altec corks (1996-1998) and with our new corks (Neocork) used since the 1999 vintage. I feel Neocork departs nothing in the wine while Altec does have a small detectable difference for me. I do not want anything, including natural cork, in my wine so I will not drink anymore of these wines. However, this weekend, I do plan to start selling some of these wines to those of you who want them. They will be open for tasting. Brendan and Steve want all I do not want to sell. I did try a bottle of 1998 Estate Cuvee and enjoyed it, but the cork did make the wine different and more complex-not offensive.  I guess I could rationalize and compare it to adding oak; but I do choose to add new oak.

Saturday January 18, 2003

Brendan is a great debater! He used to participate in Cal Poly's debate team. He has convinced me to not sell my older wines bottled with Altec corks. He feels that I should not sell wine that I do not like even if he and others think they are OK. It was a long discussion or debate as I would like to call it, but he won. I felt if some of you liked the wines and most of you including Brendan did not think these wines are bad (just different), then I do not want to deprive you of them. BUT Brendan thinks that if I do not like them, because these wines contain a small amount of something I did not intend to be in the wines, that I should not sell them. Like I said, he won the debate and I do agree with him. 

You will hear it first here! I predict that the Raiders will win, no surprise, but I also think that the Tampa Bay Bucs will also win in PA. I am really surprised that no one is predicting that the Bucs could win while a few think that Tennessee could upset the Raiders. I will admit to be wrong if I need to, Monday morning. I am not impressed with the Eagles and I do not think they can win a Super Bowl, but what do I know? 


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