David Coffaro Vineyard
          and Winery Winemaker's Diary

arrow July 7 - July 13, 2013

Monday July 8, 2013

It is 9 pm now and it is still light, but everyday from now on will give us less light until December 21 when we will have our shortest day. Today we bottled our first wines form the 2012 vintage. I will go into more detail tomorrow but I was extremely impressed with our new 2012 Petit Verdot. I know most of you have either never tasted a 100% Petit Verdot or have found it too intense. It is the varietal from Bordeaux which gives them color. In darkness it is a little less dark than Petite Sirah, but it has a definite character which is hard to describe. In the past I have stated it has a lavender character........a little. I know I have mentioned the 2010 Petit Verdot as one of my favorite wines ever.............this 2012 could be better............Tomorrow is another day     

Not yet......10pm

We are all hypocrites. Some of you may say: I would never do that!! Politicians do it every day. I practice hypocrisy at times and I think it is OK. Read what wikipedia says:


Tuesday July 9, 2013

10:00 Pm: OK I am tired or is it a lack of sleep OR is it the Giants keep losing. I look at some of all Giants baseball games so I am in the fifth inning and need to take a break to inform you of what I thought about the first bottling of our 2012 wines. Overall I am sure all of you will be impressed with the balance of the wines. I also noticed a smooth finish on all the wines. I have said in the past it is hard to achieve a wine with a beginning, middle and an end.......all in motion through your mouth. That is what I strive for and this will go down as one of my best vintages.

That said!!!!!!! I hate that saying, but it is appropriate now. The 2012 wines are too balanced for me. They are what I want to achieve but I like challenges and I think I did my best with the 2010 and 2011 vintages. 2012 was too easy. Anyone could make a great wine. OK

Particulars.........I love the 2012 Petit Verdot, over the 2010 (one of my favorite wines), I like the 2012 Petite Sirah, but the 2010 has more intenseness. Pat does not like intenseness so she does not like Petit Verdot and Petite Sirah........Everyone has a different palate. Pat and I enjoy all wines but we have different likes. just like all of you.

I like the 2012 Cabernet, but Matt is gushing over it because he prefers the EXPENSIVE French barrels he likes (more than double the price of my favorite barrel, Demptos. I perceive and taste what he likes, but I like astringency more than most people so I prefer the 2010 Cabernet 6 months and the 2010 16 months much to my liking. Now I must admit I could not consume a whole bottle of these 2010 wines.

Tomorrow is another day so I will go into more detail about the wines I tasted in the last two days........more than twenty.....

As some of you know I have many other things going on in my life besides making wine. Making wine is a passion and takes up most of my thoughts everyday, even sometimes everyday on vacations. There are so many things that occupy my day (Like Amazon wants me to sell wine) or most importantly......tree service.

We have a lot of trees on our property. Some are getting old because they have been here for my 34 years. I know of even a few that have grown from nothing to have their roots moving concrete after 34 years. SO we need to have some tree trimming every year. Most of the times Catarino can take care of some of the problems with tree branches falling. We also have a bunch of pine trees growing on our property line out on Dry Creek Rd on property owned by Sonoma County. I heard they were planted by the previous owner back in 1960 after Dry Creek Rd was widened. Then a few days ago the daughter of the previous owner came by for the first time since she left the property as a young child. She was so nice and informed me that the government was giving the pine trees away for free. After 50+ years these pine trees have been a problem in many ways so I hired a crew that was working for Sonoma County to take out all the trees north of our drive way right off of our winery. Since the trees were falling down on the road over the years, but now getting so tall to cause a drop upon our winery........I spent way too much money to remove these trees. I called the County of Sonoma first for permission since it is their property and of course since I was paying for it they said ........go right ahead. This tree service did a nice job, but like I said they were way too expensive........So yesterday i contacted two other tree service companies and received quotes today. Tomorrow I will go into more detail. 

I feel more safe now after this crash in San Francisco. As most of you know, I hate flying but it is most about the inconvenience. Sure I like to be in control so I do not like relying on these pilots to keep me safe. So most I do not like the inconvenience, but I have confidence I will probably not die on a plane crash So I may fly more......a little

Wednesday July 10, 2013

This has been one of those stressful days, but like some days when I had completing tree service people yesterday. This day was about winemaking and bottling our 2012 wines.

Everything was fine until I realized I had to figure out how to get 3400 cases into a building that is 24 by 32. I do have a high sealing so I can stack 150 cases high. If i had this building full I could get 5600 cases in. BUT I have decided to put all our pick up cases in this building also.

There are about 36 places to put pallets which are 42 inches by 48. That gives us the possibility for 5600 cases I mentioned before.......but we have to access to wine that customers want to pick up so those pallets have to be only a max of 75 cases, most are 60. Since we have 26 wines to bottle that leaves me only 10 places for stacked wine as high as 150 cases..........1500 cases. that leaves 26 places left for 1500 cases for pick up wine left low enough so Cindi, Catalina, Martha, Salvador and Catarino can reach the wine 4 to 5 feet high.

More later........

I had a tequila, a short one......I needed it.......and of course 2012 wines

9:00 Pm: Like i said i had a stressful day and then after deciding the schematic for storing all the wine......I had to move a few pallets around in this 24x32 building. That brought me to the afternoon BUT then Matt asked if I could move a few barrels out of our new storage building and move them to the winery........this was about 4:15 pm. I was getting ready to escape after looking at how my stocks were doing..........like Amazon, a new all time high............so I said yes to Matt's request and headed off to capture a stack of barrels. NOW barrels are stack differently, compared to Full pallets of cased wine. Stacks of wine barrels are usually done here, two to three high. Some wineries stack much higher, which I would not do and especially we have a building lower than some.
Three stacks of 60 gallon barrels provides a potential of 150 cases of bottled wine which is what I can store in the same place in our 24X32 building.

I did not remember what I had coming to me.........

Earlier last week I asked Matt to stack all the barrels of full wine (150 high cases) he did not need over in the new building. That way we freed up most of the winery and also cleared out everything in this 24X32 building. What I asked him to do was to stack the racks tight to get as much in this new building as we could. I did not realize that could create a problem for the forklift which is slightly more narrow than two racks. (I assume they used a pallet jack which is less narrow that a sack of wine barrels or cased goods.) I headed over to the building and realized I had to be careful.......at times I had 1/8 inches on each side to get through a narrow passage between barrel rows and then I had to pick up four barrels (2500 pounds) and move back with tires scraping and my old forklift scraping against barrels and racks. Long story......but I was finished by 6pm. I had a short tequila and started on the wine from yesterday......

more later.........

10:00 Pm: As some of you know I dislike stating what I think of my wines or any others. Pat and I do not agree on what we perceive on most wines. So I am reluctant to say what I think about these 2012 wines. Like I have said they are balanced and will be great wines. They are what we strive for. Tonight I decided to only taste these 2012 wines. Usually I compare them to past vintages but tonight after a stressful day and a tequila I decided to be more fair to these 2012 wines. As I have said I like intense wines and some times that means astringency.

Tonight I tasted all the wines bottled on Monday and Tuesday. I tasted the 2012 Pinot......2012 Petite Sirah........2012 Peloursin........2012 Cab Franc..........2012 Petit Verdot........2012 Terre Melange.......2012 Mourvedre.......2012 Cabernet...........2012 Aglianico...........and 2012 Lagrein.............

I had tasted these wines on Monday and Tuesday and it was fun to try them again. I hope to do some small attempt at tasting notes tomorrow............I know how my wines taste but I do not know how you perceive the wines on your palate and I do not want you to think I know anymore than you.......you are the only ones who know how they taste to you.......... 

Tomorrow is another day

Thursday July 11, 2013

9:30 Pm: I am still alive.........bottling is intense

I have tasted all the wines that we have bottled so far. It has been a very big day so I am recovering this evening. I like the Rhone based wines more than before. l like astringency as I have stated before but some of these 2012 wines are enjoyable by being balanced and this means less astringency on the beginning, middle and finish on these wines.   The arrangement in the building storing all these 26 wines..............it is a puzzle as past years. I will have it figured out tomorrow.

Friday July 11, 2013

10:30 Pm: It is another tequila tonight but after a short one I tasted all the wines bottled this week. After tasting wine I had a short taste of Stone Imperial Russian Stout.........intense!!!! I was focus on the zins tonight. I had the estate zin bottled last night and Dave's Zin, a blend of zin and ps. I also had the two wines bottled today.........the Block One (our first effort from over 110 year old vines) and our Block 4, one of my favorites and our most popular wine. I thought the Block 4 was as usual, smooth, complex, layered and with spices more like cloves, cinnamon and allspice. I thought the Block One had the most typical spice of cracked pepper Zin. I thought the Dave's Cuvee was similar even though it had a hint of Petite Sirah. Estate Cuvee and our new Naturale is next week......

I have not read anything about I will say now but I am certain others are thinking the same way

I have it figured out for many years. I would love to be in the next several centuries. I know my wife does not like changes so she would be not in agreement and I assume some of you would feel the same way. Just think what will happen. We will be able to see everything we want right in front of us with something small on our body. That will happen in the next decade or so. Then we will not have to even see it.......it will be imbedded in us. It will be a scary time and I would have loved to be involved in it's revolution. For now I will wait and try to stay alive and see what will be the first glimpses of what is inevitable.

.......I have a customer who is complaining.........A customer complains about once a month. I get upset because most of the time the customer is wrong. But even if they are wrong and reasonable........the customer is always right. And then you get a few a year who are a problem........Then i can't resist to reply. I am righteous at times to a fault.........

So here is an exchange of e-mails between a customer and me. The problem is you should read these e-mails from the last e-mail at the bottom of the page First........since the last e-mail is first the customer sent.....,,,,,,,,,,your choice


So what is the process?  Do I need to pay to ship the wine back to you?


Please let me know.



From: David Coffaro

Like I said 2 inches down should not spoil a screwcap wine. I have wines open for many days after tasting and some are down 3/4 of the way and they taste fine, sometimes even better because they are smoother. Matt, who runs the bottling line, has informed me that sometimes he forgets some of the wine he has put aside because we have caught low fills and it can be several weeks and he has taken them home and found the wine to be fine. If you still have the wine, even if it is 3 inches down, I would like to have it back SO if you bring it back within the next year, I will gladly exchange the bottle for what ever you want.....Thank you.........Dave



It was a 2011 Pinot Noir that we ordered with our case of wine futures.  This was the only bottle that was not filled to capacity, probably less than an inch below the others.  For whatever reason it was not drinkable, and seemed to be spoiled.  I still have the bottle.


The others were fine and we enjoyed them thoroughly.


Does this help?  If you want to chat, my cell number..............



David Coffaro
Subject: Coffaro wine

Cindi just informed me that you sent the message below. Which bottle was it? How low was the fill? Screwcap wines can be down over two inches and still taste fine. You say the wine tasted bad. How did it taste? I am not saying you did not received a wine that was filled low, but we have not heard that in several years. I will need more info, thanks...........Dave

>>>We had one bottle that was not full, and the wine tasted bad.  Any refund policy in effect on our shipment?  The rest was fine....  just one bottle that was bad.
Please let me know,


Saturday July 13, 2013

8:00 Pm: Earlier       Do not read this tonight if you do not want to hear the verdict. My wife did not know what I mentioned today when I was glued to the verdict. I said there was deliberations going on........she said WHAT are you Talking about. I fought hard to get her updated regarding a Black person was killed in his own neighborhood, just walking home and this guy can come up and shoot him in his heart and get away free. This is hard for me BUT I am certain in the next century black people will be just like us and not profiled...............

It is hard for me to write because of what I am thinking before BUT life goes on. I think of myself first and then my family BUT I do feel for people who are struggling in poverty..........

The 2012 Block 4 is now my favorite wine for the night. Bryan and Kate are here tomorrow night for pizza.......tomorrow is another day......toward the next century........who knows what that will bring 

For any comments or questions I encourage any of you to e-mail.....david@coffaro.com


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