NEWSLETTER SIGN UPSign Up for Email Updates!
Trinitas Cellars Blog
Welcome to the Trinitas Cellars Blog! We hope you join us for frequent updates on our vineyards, production, tasting room and wine education.
Part IV: Larose to New Orleans
It was bittersweet to leave Larose this morning. Betsy and I enjoyed a nice breakfast with our friends, Karrie and Todd and loaded up our car to head back to New Orleans. We made good time and checked into our hotel early and met one of our distributor reps, Kevin to begin a day of exploring the city and showing off some Trinitas wine!
Our first stop was Herbsaint on Saint Charles Avenue. The menu looked delicious featuring authentic Southern cuisine with a French and Italian influence. We enjoyed tasting through the Trinitas wines there and can’t wait to return for some cuisine!
Next we ventured over to Palace Café. The rain started coming down and parking was a challenge, so Kevin so kindly dropped us at the curb so we did not get too soaked! Palace Café has this great outdoor seating area right there on Canal Street which is perfect for people watching and many were out there enjoying a morning cappuccino and pastry while watching the rain. We loved that you could peek into the kitchen from the restaurant and see the chefs working on the fresh baked pastries and breakfast! Yum!
After visiting Palace Café, we headed over to a great little lunch spot, Chef Susan Spicer’s Mondo. We enjoyed a delicious meal there; I had the fish tacos which paired very nicely with our 2010 El Dorado Zinfandel. The menu featured a lot of great flavors and variety!
After lunch, we ventured into the French Quarter to stop at a historic building, the Royal Sonestra Hotel. Inside of this beautiful hotel is an amazing restauarant called R’evolution. We were immediately awed by the meat fridges displaying the charcuterie that is prepared in house and the beautiful display kitchen where you can watch the chefs at work while you are enjoying your cuisine. We were excited to get a sneak peak of the restaurant because actually I had already planned to come here for dinner based on a recommendation from one of our friends and Wine Society member.
Staying inside the French Quarter, we ventured over to Muriel’s Jackson Square, a great little spot on the corner of Chartres Street with another delicious menu of creole and other authentic Louisiana fare. The building itself was full of history and tells a great story of Louisiana as it was once a “grand residence” due to its prime location and beautiful architecture.
After visiting Muriel’s, Betsy and I had the great opportunity to meet Tim McNally and join him for his daily, Dine, Wine and Spirits radio show on WGSO990. We enjoyed chatting with Tim and could instantly tell why he is so popular in the city of New Orleans! He made us feel right at ease and it was a blast chatting with him and learning about New Orleans through him and introducing him to our wines.
Check out our broadcast here, fast forward to 1:01:45 to listen to our segment:
Funny enough, Tim is actually headed to Destin at the end of the week too, so I will be reconnecting with him Friday for another radio show. Stay tuned!
After we left Tim’s show, we headed back to our hotel to freshen up before we walked back down to the French Quarter via Bourbon Street. Betsy and I returned to R’evolution for our 8:15 pm dinner reservation. It was a full house on a Monday night which was fun to see and we were excited to check out the menu as we had received several recommendations of what to order.
For our “appetizer”, Betsy and I split the “Death by Gumbo” which was a roasted quail stuffed with sausage and rice and then covered in gumbo. Absolutely delicious. Next, we ordered the “Pig Out Board” which was a sampling of all of the in-house charcuterie. This board brought Betsy and I right back to our travels to Italy and made us wish we had brought some of our Trinitas Amarone with to pair! We didn’t have it too rough though, as Betsy had picked out a bottle of our 2012 Martin Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon to enjoy with our dinner.
For the main course, you know me, I couldn’t resist and had to order the Bone-in Filet and Betsy was kind enough to share some of her scallops and Foie Gras with me. Wow, what cuisine! We tried to escape without overindulging on dessert, but the pastry chef provided us with a fun little box of sweets including some delicious chocolates and bites.
After our delicious meal, it was time to walk a little bit to digest. We took a stroll down Bourbon Street just to see what all was going on. For a Monday night, it was pretty darn busy! Lots of live music, dancing and drinking! We wandered around and came back to Bar Vin, a quieter little wine shop recommended to us by our friends who are part of the Krewe of Cork. We enjoyed a night cap before calling it a night and heading back to our hotel!
Day 2: New Orleans to Lettsworth
Betsy and I woke up well rested and ready to go for our first full day in Louisiana. What’s the best way to start a day in Louisiana? Crawfish for breakfast! We both got omelettes with crawfish before heading out for the drive to Lettsworth.
Where the heck is Lettsworth? Yes, most people in Louisiana probably don’t even know… it’s about an hour Northwest of Baton Rouge. Why visit Lettsworth? Well, this weekend also marks the 7th anniversary of our winemaker Kevin and his wife Brandy. Brandy actually grew up in Lettsworth, Louisiana and her family is all still there. In celebration of their 7th anniversary, Brandy and Kevin threw a big party so that they could open the 27L Titanic bottle of 2005 Petite Sirah from their wedding day.
We couldn’t miss this opportunity to meet Brandy’s family, celebrate with Brandy and Kevin and of course I was curious to taste that 2005 Petite Sirah after almost 10 years!
The drive took about 3 hours and we learned that Google Maps is not servicing the state of Louisiana very well because we accidentally passed their house unknowingly and had to turn around to find it. Once we pulled in we knew we were in the right place; the band was rocking and the crawfish were boiling and as we walked up the driveway we could hear a whole lot of Louisiana twang!
Immediately I saw that the 27L was already open and freely flowing… I was impressed that Kevin had gotten the cork out of the bottle with one pull, no easy feat if you have ever tried to uncork one of these large format bottles, especially since it had been in the bottle for 8 years!
I couldn’t take the suspense any longer, I grabbed a glass and first sip…. it’s good!!! The party is on! We’ve got work to do! Time to play “drink the wine”, a very popular party game.
It wasn’t long before we heard the call from Papa, “crawfish are ready!”
Being that we Trinitas folk are professionals at eating crustaceans with seven years of practice at our own Trinitas lobster feeds, I felt pretty confident in my crawfish shelling and eating abilities. We headed over to the tables to grab a spot to begin shelling and eating!
Per usual, Betsy just wanted to eat the crawfish and not shell them, so I had to do all the hard work… We also learned that the Petite Sirah pairs pretty nicely with the spicy crawfish!
Not only was this a very authentic crawfish boil, but even better, the sweet corn in the boil was straight off of Brandy’s family’s farm. Now, that is how it’s done!
Once we had our fill, we checked out the music and did a little bit of dancing, and more drinking, of course! Some of the other Louisiana cuisine that we learned about and enjoyed were Boudin balls, this crispy bite of jambalaya rolled into a ball and fried, what’s not to like? We also got a taste of delicious spiced pecans and cracklin’! I am pretty sure we are not going to leave Louisiana hungry! Despite a few little mosquito bites, we enjoyed partying until the sun went down and relaxing on the farm.
Looking forward to the next Louisiana adventure tomorrow!
As our crew worked hard this morning to bring in the last bit of Petite Sirah, we are happy report that the 2014 harvest season has come to a close! Even though the weather cooperated for the most part and brought us great fruit, this harvest has been challenging logistically speaking.
This is the earliest harvest most vintners can remember. This is Trinitas’s 13th harvest, and definitely the earliest we have ever seen. We found ourselves picking grapes three to four weeks before we normally do and the fruit is coming in ripe and delicious. Bud-break began in February and the warm dry weather was consistent through the rest of the harvest season bringing us a harvest in August and September with only a few vineyards left to pick in October.
The earthquake hit right at the onset of harvest which really threw us all for a loop, and made everyone extremely busy. Normally this time of year is very busy with preparing for harvest, but cleaning up the mess of the quake made it even more hectic! We were forced to push off some of our picks, organization in the cellar was a challenge, and clean up took about three weeks until it was totally finished. While we were still cleaning, we had to worry about incoming fruit, crushing, fermentations, and also make sure we still got out to the vineyards to check on fruit to be picked later. On top of that, barrel management is always difficult and many barrels that were empty ready for incoming juice were destroyed in the quake so we had some last minute scrambling to find new barrels. Even after the initial sorting, and only after filling we determined there were still compromised barrels leaking and we had to rush to find replacements and repair damaged ones.
This time of year is always a challenge to find oak, but it was worse because everyone was scrambling to replace barrels that were damaged. On top of all of that, it would have been a grueling harvest anyway since it was one of the more compacted harvests in recent memory, 2012 would be comparable but still was not even as quick as this harvest. This means a lot of fruit was ready all at the same time and some days we were picking four to five different blocks when normally we peak at two to three in one day max. That put more stress on the cellar crew but they made it through with shining colors! The good news for the cellar team is they will get to take their post-harvest vacations way earlier this year…and that R&R is much needed and definitely deserved after this unforgettable fall.
Also amazing is the fact that this is the third good vintage in a row. Usually you have a stellar year then a few “decent” years and sometimes even a bad one, but 2012 and 2013 are stellar vintages and thus far from what we have seen and tasted 2014 is going to deliver some delicious wine as well. Here’s to hoping for a fourth amazing year in 2015!
Thank you to our cellar crew, our harvest crew, our vineyard management team, and the hardest working winemaker in the biz, Kevin Mills.
Thank you to everyone that called, sent notes, checked in with us and visited over this crazy harvest. It is because of all of you that we continue to produce these wines, and we look forward to seeing you the next time you are in town!
Join me at 4 pm as we taste with CellarPass TV live at Hall Wines.
Tweet with us during the tasting @trinitascellars using #CellarPassTV
Bula! Or "Hello" rather! Greetings from Fiji!
If you hadn't already heard, I got married on June 14, 2014 to my beautiful wife, Betsy, and we danced the night away at the Meritage Resort & Spa, home to our Trinitas Cellars tasting room and vineyard in Napa. It was a perfect day and we are currently on our honeymoon across the Pacific Ocean in the tropical paradise of Fiji!
While we have absolutely loved the local rum and the hospitality of the people here, but we couldn't help but bring a little bit of our own Trinitas wine to share and enjoy on the beach while watching the beautiful sunsets!
Hope to see you back in Napa when we return!
All the best, Garrett & Betsy
I'm always excited about Auction...it is one of the best weekends of the year when all the vintners come together to showcase our great Valley, great wines, and our big hearts. This year is particularly exciting to me because I missed half of last year's Auction to attend a good friend's wedding. This year at the Barrel Auction, Trinitas Cellars is excited to be featuring a brand new single vineyard Cab that we are going insane over! And on top of it all, my fiancee, Betsy and I get married just one week after Auction! Here is a picture of Betsy and I kicking off the celebration at the Vintner's Auction Preparty luncheon:
Last year was a record year and blew the previous record away which is just proof of how incredibly our neighbors and supporters are and we are hoping to top that and the excitement to do so is electric! Happy Auction and we hope you can come to Auction next year and many years to come!!!!
April was a big month for Trinitas. We made our first ever appearance at VinItaly in Verona. This was such a unique opportunity for us to get in front of the world and show off our wines as well as a chance for us to spend more time with our dear friends, the Fumanellis.
The Fumanelli family has been involved in wine for centuries! Since 1470, the Fumanelli family has been growing grapes on their property and also been involved in making amazing wines, true to the Valpolicella Classico region. Keeping it in the family, Federico Fumanelli, Armando’s oldest son, is getting even more involved in the family wine business and wine sales, similar to my own parents recruiting me to help run the family business in 2010.
While visiting the Fumanellis, Betsy and I got to do a vertical tasting of five different Amarone wines from barrel, starting with the recently barreled 2013 vintage and working back five years to the 2009 vintage with the guidance of the Fumanelli winemakers, Flavio and his son, Damiano.
We really enjoyed visiting Italy, but what was particularly unique and inspiring about this trip was working with Federico and Damiano. Even though we come from different sides of the world, we had a lot in common as the next generation of wine in our families. The three of us are all working to continue our families’ legacies in the wine industry and continue to grow our global reach and share our love of wine.
Greetings from Verona. I am here with Armando and the rest of the Fumanelli winery team preparing for our big international debut at VinItaly. It is such an exciting time to be in Verona as there are months of preparation that go into the event and there will be thousands of wine producers from near and far pouring wine in the historic city of Verona.
This year marks a very special opportunity for us as our dear friends, the Fumanellis, have invited us to pour along side them at the exhibition. I am so excited to meet wine lovers and enthusiasts from all over the world and show them the Trinitas wines that so many of us love and share.
VinItaly starts on Sunday officially, so in these days of preparation. Armando and Roberta have show my fiancée, Betsy, and me all the best places to eat delicious local salame, prosciutto, pasta and more and also where to try other great Amarone wines!
Another great part of being in Verona during this time is that we get to see the vineyards that produce the grapes for our Family Collection Amarone grow and develop. We are just starting to see the signs of buds breaking and shoots about to emerge! A very exciting time indeed.
Just over a year ago we hosted the Fumanellis at Trinitas in Napa for "Napa Meets Verona" where we brought the local music, cuisine and wine of Verona to Napa. Tomorrow the Fumanellis are hosting more than 50 people at their home, Squarano, for "Verona Meets Napa" featuring music, cuisine and Trinitas wines from Napa! We are very much looking forward for this chance to make new friends and continue to share our love and passion for wine with others. Here is a picture of Squarano, where we will have the dinner event tomorrow:
Well, I'm on the road again... this time in Florida! At least it's a lot warmer than the week I spent in Michigan last week! I'm with our great Florida distributor, Unfiltered Unfined Wines and yesterday we stopped by a great little place, Petty's Meat Market in Melbourne, Florida. I met with Hunter and we tasted through some of our Trinitas favorites. Petty's has a wide variety of Trinitas wines on its shelf, including our Proprietor's Reserve Chardonnay and Mysterium, as well as some new additions to the shelf with our Apprentice Chardonnay, Old Vine Zinfandel, Meritage and Moscato! To anyone in the Melbourne, Florida area, this is definitely the place to go to please any palate. Thank you Hunter and Petty's for having me and I hope that we can return the favor and host you in Napa soon!
Petty's Meat Market - Babcock Location - 1616 South Babcock Street, Melbourne, Florida - (321) 725-0400
April 18, 2015
April 17, 2015
April 16, 2015
April 15, 2015(1 Comment)
April 14, 2015
April 12, 2015
January 22, 2015(1 Comment)
January 13, 2015
November 5, 2014
October 15, 2014(1 Comment)
- November 2014 (1)
- October 2014 (1)
- August 2014 (2)
- July 2014 (2)
- June 2014 (4)
- May 2014 (1)
- April 2014 (6)
- March 2014 (7)
- February 2014 (13)
- January 2014 (4)
- Bekah Allen, Tasting Room Manager (2)
- Betsy Busch, Proprietor (19)
- Garrett Busch, Proprietor (16)
- June Busch, Trinitas Wine Dog (3)
- Trinitas Cellars (1)
- Lamar Engel, Tasting Room Manager (7)
- Lucy Garibay, Wine Society Coordinator (3)
- Jen Heim (1)
- Kevin Mills, Winemaker (3)
- Brianna Pickens, Wine Society Assistant (5)
- Mark Plasch, Orange County Sales Manager (1)
- Trinitas Tasting Room (8)
- Ed Roudebush, Tasting Room (2)
- Kelly Wilkinson, San Diego Sales Manager (1)
- Ashley Younger, Tasting Room (2)