June 2012 Contra Costa Wine Group Newsletter


     Our last meeting was held at the home of Tony and Holly Blackburn in Lafayette.  There were around 40 people in attendance and Holly’s hors d’oeuvres were wonderful.  It turned out to be a beautiful night outside with the frogs croaking and being in and around the Perera vineyard next door.   Our thanks go to the Blackburns for being such gracious hosts.

     I read an email to the attendees from Mark and Marion Semmens, former CCWG members, now operating the Marion’s Vineyard Winery in Tasmania.  They were from Danville and got into wine after bumping into the co-founder of CCWG Steve Cisler at “Wine & the People” in Berkeley.  They have lodging, do weddings, parties and special events there in the Tamar Valley of Tasmania.  You might like to take a look at their website at info@marionsvineyard.com  Mark may be sending me some old CCWG “stuff” after he finishes cleaning out the attic.  If it shows up, I’ll be sure to bring it to a future meeting. 

     The speaker at our last meeting was Marta Ashby, partner/winemaker at Climbing Monkey’s Winery in Martinez.  Marta and her family started out in 2004 as home winemakers.  Her talk was entitled “Clean Wine: Steps to Avoid VA.”  She had about 25 handouts and the talk was very well received with lots of questions being asked and answered by those in attendance.

     For your information, you may ignore the subscription mailers from WineMaker Magazine.  The Contra Costa Wine Group gets a very good deal from their Publisher by providing them with our membership list each year around Halloween.  They do not sell that list to anyone.

     The Orange County Home Wine Competition results are not out yet, as of today, Sunday, June 24, 2012.  I’ll publish our winners in the next newsletter.

     Our next meeting will be held on Friday night, June 29, 2012, starting right around 7:00 p.m. The speaker for the night is going to be a surprise!  The meeting will be held at the home of Stuart and Debbie Bussey, 1746 Reliez Valley Rd., Lafayette. 


     DIRECTIONS:  From Highway 24, take the Pleasant Hill Rd. North exit.  About 0.7 miles later, turn left at the light onto Reliez Valley Rd.  Follow Reliez for about 1.8 miles and the Bussey residence at 1746 Reliez Valley Rd. will be on your right.  Their telephone number is (925) 938-3231.


It’s recommended that you bring a folding chair, jacket for cold weather, a bottle of your best for the hors d’oeuvres hour (or an eclectic selection that you think the attendees might like) and a wine glass.


I hope that you can make it to the meeting.  I hope to see you there.


Respectfully submitted. Al Turner, Secretary, Contra Costa Wine Group