2012 California State Fair

The awards from the 2012 California State Fair are in. Our 2011 Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc scored 95 points and was awarded a gold medal and best of class. Four other wines took home some awards!

Summertime And The Livin’ Is Easy

As the 4th of July approaches we are getting into party mode. The vines look good and a bumper crop is a real possibility. The folks in the cellar are busy bottling, and the new screw cap machine is a success.

We just received word from the California State Fair that our 2011 Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc earned 95 points, a GOLD MEDAL, and a BEST OF CLASS award! We will pour the wine at the awards ceremony in Sacramento on August 18th.

Sales continue at a brisk pace. We are into the 2009 Russian River Pinot Noir, and will soon transition into the 2010 Russian River Valley Chardonnay. Our California direct sales force has far outpaced budget projections and has made Taft Street a real player in the California market. Kudos to Clayton, Mosha and Marc!

This month we will participate in the Winery BBQ Competition at the Sonoma Academy on July 14th, pour at the Santa Rosa Wednesday Night Market on July 25, and present The Smilin’ Iguanas as part of our A LITTLE STREET MUSIC concert series.

Got a cool video review of our 2008 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir from Thumbs Up Wine.

Hope you can join us at one or more of our events during the month. Or just stop in at the Tasting Room when you’re in the area. Be sure to check this month’s summer recipie: BAR B QUE Chile Paste.


Mike Tierney
President, Taft Street Winery

Summer BAR B QUE Chile Paste

It’s grilling time! Much of our entertaining this time of year is done behind the  bar b que grill or smoker. I always keep a supply of chile paste on hand, using it as a rub, sauce or part of dressings or spreads.


  • 2 ounces dried guajillo or other dark chile
  • ¼ cup chopped garlic
  • ¼ cup soaking water
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  1. Toast the chiles in a dry skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes, then soak in hot water for 20 minutes or until soft. Drain, seed and stem, and save ¼ cup soaking liquid.
  2. Put chiles and remaining ingredients in a blender and puree to a smooth paste. Can be refrigerated for the rest of the summer.

On the 4th of July we’ll be serving this with ribs and our just released 2011 Sonoma County Rose of Pinot Noir!