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April 2018 Contra Costa Wine Group Newsletter


Our last meeting was for the Red Wine winners from our January 20th 40th Annual CCWG Professional Wine Judging and Potluck Dinner.  We had 9 wines poured on Friday night, March 23rd.  All of the First Place winners were there with their wine and a handout for those assembled. Thank you so much, you winners.  It was a very enjoyable meeting.  I’d especially like to thank Carl Yu for arranging the use of his neighborhood Clubhouse for this meeting.  We pretty well filled out the facility with around 65 people in attendance.  Thanks also to those who brought hors d’oeuvres with them as there was no “host” for the meeting. 

Speaking of “Hosts,” I am still in need of a Large Home for Nouveau Night on Friday night, December 7, 2018.  The CCWG will pay a stipend of $200.00 to defray the cost of hors d’oeuvres and the “cleaning lady.”  Please consider it and let me know if you can help out your group.

The next meeting will be, Friday night, April 27th from about 7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. or so at the home of Steve and Joyce Mirabito in Lafayette.  Try and carpool as I understand that parking is at a premium.  You will be asked to park below their home and you’ll be taken up the hill in the family 8 passenger van.


Our speaker for the evening will be CCWG Member, David Buchanan. who sent me the following:

  I am putting together my talk.  I am promising to provide answers to pressing questions such as the following:

- How much does a wine bottle weigh?
- What is the purpose of the punt in the bottom of the wine bottle?
- What is the point of the different shapes and colors of wine bottles?

- What is the best way to fill bottles for bottling?

- What is the best closure for my wine?
- What are my chances of getting a "corked" bottle?
- What is the best source for bottles for my wine?
- What is the best way to stick the label on the bottle?
- What information should I include on the label?
- What do you call those larger bottles?  How big do they get?


CCWG Member, Mike Koch is asking the following of David:

  I would like to know more about labels and labeling. I am sure there is a better way to put on labels than my glue stick.  Also, would like to hear your thoughts on what information to put on the label.


CCWG Member, John Walkinshaw is asking the following of David:

What is the origin of the 750ml bottle in terms of volume choice? Is a standard glass of wine supposed to be 150ml, so that there are 5 glasses in a bottle?

I know that in Switzerland, some wineries use 700ml. In restaurants there, open wine is commonly sold in one deciliter (dl = 100ml) portions or increments so that a bottle serves seven portions. However, the majority of bottles sold are 750ml, so is there a World standard, but exceptions are allowed?


If you are restricted in space to store your wine and you use the boxes for storage, which common bottle (ones we can buy) uses the least volume by case of 12? More simply, are Bordeaux bottles more efficient than Burgundy?

Please do not spend a lot of time doing any research on these, but if you do know the answers, you might be able to weave them into your presentation.


Bring your questions for David.  I believe that this will turn out to be a very informative and worthwhile meeting.  Hope to see you there.


     DIRECTIONS: From I 680 both North and the South, take Highway 24 West toward Oakland.  Take the very first exit, the Pleasant Hill Rd. exit (#14) North.  After about 0.7 miles, turn left at the 3rd Stop Light onto Reliez Valley Rd.  Go through the 2nd Stop Sign about 1/8 of a mile and turn left onto Shangri La Rd.  The Mirabito home is located at 3432 Shangri La Rd., Lafayette.  Their telephone in case you get lost is: (925) 988-0255.

     Be sure to bring: 1) a jacket; 2) a wine glass; 3) a folding chair and 4) a bottle of your best wine, or a commercial one that you think the group might enjoy, for the hors d’oeuvres table.   Again, Friday night, April 27th from about 7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. or so.  I’ll see lots of you there!  I’m pretty sure Steve will be firing up the pizza oven and preparing several for all to enjoy.  On top of that, the view from the veranda is spectacular!

Respectfully submitted,

Al Turner, Secretary, Contra Costa Wine Group  (925) 837-9384

WineMaker Magazine’s 2010, 2011, 2015, 2016 & 2017 (International)Club of the Year

And hoping for the “Grand Slam” of 4 years in a row!  We’ll know fairly soon.