Looking for something to do this weekend?  Why not check out Family Winemakers of California, who is holding their annual tasting at Ft. Mason on Sunday and Monday.  This annual tasting opens their typically trade-only doors to you, the unwashed masses, on Sunday afternoon from 3pm to 6pm.  Trade sessions are 1pm-3pm, and Monday 1pm-6pm.

Family Winemakers of California was founded in 1991 to help promote small, family wineries.  Specifically, it was formed to band together to help with legislation and wine policy in the state.  A lot of little voices is better than a few large ones in this case.  Their mission is to advocate the rights and interests of these small producers, and to help them sell their product.

The tasting is now in it’s 18th year.  It was originally conceived as a trade-only event, which is why the bulk of the 2-day tasting is for bonafide trade member only, where they have an opportunity for the wine trade to discuss issues, and taste each others wine.  In 1996, they opened their doors to the public, and the rest is history.

This event is one of my favorites, and not just because I’ve been working with them for the past 5 years.  Over 360 Family Winemaker members are pouring their wines.  For consumers, tickets are available for $50, which while not cheap, is a great value considering that the member wineries are typically small, and often tiny and hard to access.  For example, some names you might know are St. Supery and Hahn Family.  Some you may not but which produce lovely wines are Corison, Row 11, Owl Ridge , Sobon Estates, and Titus.  Yes, those are totally my personal favorites 😉  There are literally hundreds of wineries that I don’t know, so I will be spending some time tasting new names.

The tasting book can be found online HERE so you can review who will be pouring.  I personally like to form a plan of attack, like targeting wineries I’ve never said, then the ultra premiums, then my faves, but you can also target the list by varietal with an online varietal map.

I hope you’ll stop by and see us!

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