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March @ Woodworth

Category: Newsletters  |  Permalink

Published: Monday, March 24, 2014

Happening in the Vineyards...

 Spring is here!  The vines are growing really fast and we did our initial spray for powdery mildew. The bees showed up one night last week and are busy pollinating the Avocados.  We finished harvesting Leucadendron and were able to pick our first bucket of Protea. 











The big thing that happened this month is that we grafted Pinot Noir on to 4 rows of Chardonnay.  Grafting is a really interesting process.  When we pruned in January, we saved some canes with buds.  They were kept in a cool environment in a box of sawdust.  We then cut off the Chardonnay vines at about 3 feet high and the buds were grafted on to the cut Chardonnay vines.  Here is a video that goes through the whole process.


Pinot, (And Other) Awards...

Gary and I had a great time at the 12th annual Pinot Summit in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago.  It was at the Golden Gate Club at the Presidio...what a gorgeous place!  We came home with our Gold Medals and managed to surprise a lot of people that So Cal can grow good Pinot.  I had to make up a map to show where we are since no one could believe it.  Here are some pictures from the event.  Check out the view overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge.






Since 2011, our little (very little) winery has won almost 70 medals in international competitions.  In 2013 &14 alone we have won 40 medals.  I think it's pretty amazing considering we only have 10 wines.  You gotta love that De Luz micro-climate.  If you are interested in seeing a list of the awards from the past few years, use this link:  MEDALS


Fromage Fort...

I recently had a dinner party and ended up with several different wedges of cheese left. Usually I just wrap them up and they eventually get eaten or thrown out. I ran across an article and recipe for Fromage Fort and it is the best!

Fromage Fort is translated as 'strong cheese' and it is a blend of whatever odds and ends of cheese you have with some wine, maybe some garlic, pepper and herbs…whatever you feel like. Softer cheese makes it creamy and harder cheeses can benefit from a pat of butter. You can age it for up to a week. You can spread your bread with Fromage Fort and put it under the broiler, or if it is soft, use it as a dip for breadsticks or crostini. The recipes are more like outlines, so basically you just wing it. My favorite way to cook.

Here is a recipe from 'Food and Wine' that you can use as a guideline. Again, just about anything goes. 

  • 1/2 pound cheese pieces
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • Black pepper
  • Salt

Put about 1/2 pound of cheese pieces in the bowl of a food processor, add 1 garlic clove, about 1/4 cup of dry white wine and a big grinding of black pepper. Salt is usually not needed, but taste the mixture and add some if it is. Process for 30 seconds or so, until the mixture is creamy but not too soft, and then pack it into small containers. The fromage fort is ready to use now, either served cold or spread on bread and broiled for a few minutes. Broiling will brown the cheese and make it wonderfully fragrant.

Try your own version next time you are left with extra pieces of cheese.  The great news is it's great with a lot of different wines.


Blessing of the Vines...

 It's time for our 5th annual Blessing of the Vines.  Join us to kick off the 2014 vintage when we ask for a successful harvest and the safety of the workers.  Celebrate the new year with good food, wine, music and friends in beautiful De Luz.

  • Date: Sunday, May 18
  • Time: 2pm - 5pm
  • Location: Woodworth Vineyards, De Luz
  • Cost: $20 ~ Members, $30 ~ Non Members

To get your tickets use this link: BLESSING TICKETS


Woof Notes...

I'm resurrecting a Woof Note from a couple of years ago.  This always makes me smile.

How many dogs does it take to screw in a light bulb?


Hope you enjoyed this month's Newsletter.  If so, please forward to a friend. 

Check us out at  Like us on Facebook at

Gary & Marlene


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Join Us for the Blessing of the Vines

Category: Upcoming Events  |  Permalink

Published: Monday, March 24, 2014

Blessing of the Vines..

It's time again to kick off the 2014 vintage with good food, wine, music and friends.  Join us for the 2014 Blessing of the Vines.

  • Date: Sunday, May 18
  • Time: 2pm - 5pm
  • Location: Woodworth Vineyards in De Luz  (directions given at ticket purchase)
  • Cost: Members ~ $20.00, Non Members ~ $30.00

Get your tickets below!


















Green Roof Member?

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Happening Now at Woodworth ~ February 2014

Category: Newsletters  |  Permalink

Published: Saturday, February 15, 2014

February in the Vineyards...

We've been continuing to pick Leucadendron this month.  There was a big push for Valentines bouquets, but now we are waiting a week or two before we start picking  again.  







All of the vineyards have been pruned. 







Lorenzo, our resident pruning expert, shows us how it's done on the young, head pruned, Pinot Gris vines.

We are getting ready to graft some additional Pinot Noir onto some our Chardonnay vines.  We have too much Chardonnay and we need more Pinot.  In January, we took buds from our Pinot Noir vines and have been storing them in a cool place packed in sawdust.  This month, Gary stumped the Chardonnay vines that we are going to graft on to.  Next month, we will be grafting the buds onto the stumped vines.  It's a really interesting procedure, so I'll take lots of pictures for next month's Newsletter.

In the pictures below you can see the stumped vines and Gary and Isaura removing the Cordons from the wires (not easy!)









Drought in the Vineyards...

This has been a very unusual (and not in a good way) winter here in Southern California. We were sunny, warm and dry most of January and then after a brief one week cold spell, we are back in the 80's with no rain in sight.

We, along with the other vineyards in the area, have been irrigating our vines. We've never done this. We usually don't water the vines from November through March or so, but we've had less than 2" of rain since July.

So, we're sitting at mid-February and already have young shoots. Way too early. One of the real possibilities is that we suddenly get a cold spell when the shoots are young and vulnerable. That could really impact production for 2014.

There have been some interesting articles about the impact of California drought on wine production recently. Our local paper featured comments from some prominent viticulturists here in Temecula.

Here is a link to that article: Press Enterprise

There have also been many nationwide articles and newscasts about this issue. If you are interested in reading more, here are a couple of additional links:

EE News  and  CBS News

Woodworth Pinot Does it Again...

We were just notified that our not-yet-released 2011 Pinot Noir has won a Gold Medal at the Pinot Summit.  Not only did we win a Gold, but we are in the top 50 wineries and have been invited to pour at the Pinot Shootout on March 9 at the Presidio in San Francisco.  450 wineries submitted wines to this year's competition from all over the world.  This is the fourth year we've been in the medals.  We won Gold for our 2008 and 2010 Pinot Noirs and a Silver for the 2009 vintage. 

The other fun news is that our new 'Luna de Luz' Blanc de Noir also won a Gold Medal at this event.  Woo Hoo!


Yes You Can: A Pairing Guide...

Our son in law forwarded me an article last month about pairing wine with Girl Scout Cookies.  Since then I've seen various pairing articles, each with a little different spin.  Since these wonderful little cookies are not just for kids, I've provided my own spin to pairing. 

Thin Mints: There are two types of Thin Mints made today, but both combine a wafer, chocolate, and peppermint flavoring. To truly experience the mint & chocolate combination, however, don't reach for the milk - try our 2009 Syrah instead.

Samoas (Caramel deLites): Banyuls is a red dessert wine from Southwestern France, which pairs amazingly with the dark chocolate stripes on Samoas. For a Plan B, pick up a Port.  Sorry, we don't have one.  Another, more unusual, option would be to try pairing this with the 2011 Luna de Luz sparkling

Tagalongs (Peanut Butter Patties): You're going to see a trend here: when the cookie has chocolate, grab a bottle of red wine. Tagalongs are no different - find a fruity red wine like our 2010 Wild Bandit.  BTW, these are my favorite.

Trefoils (Shortbread): Light and refreshing, a Trefoil shortbread should be paired with our 2010 Pinot Noir or a sparkling like the 2011 Luna de Luz if the mood is right.

Lemonades: When snacking on these shortbread cookies with lemon-flavored icing, grab a 2012 Chardonnay

Thanks-A-Lot: Shortbread dipped in rich fudge. It's a tough one, as it combines the light shortbread with the chocolaty fudge, but I'll be enjoying mine with the 2010 Pinot Noir or 2010 Wild Bandit.

Chocolate Chip Shortbread: There is a lot of disagreement about what types of wine pair best with chocolate chip cookies in general. This one comes down to a matter of personal preference on white or red. You could either go with the 2008 Black Dog or the 2011 Luna de Luz

Savannah Smiles: These are a lemon-based cookie similar to the Lemonades but covered with powered sugar. Try the 2012 Sweet Sophie.

Cranberry Citrus Crisps: Both sweet and tangy because of the cranberry, a good match for these would be the 2012 Sweet Sophie or the 2012 Golden Maggie



Now Available on

You can now purchase Woodworth Vineyards wine on Wine.  Check out our new Amazon storefront by going to:

Woodworth Vineyards Amazon Shop

Unfortunately, we can only ship to California through Amazon.  But, if you live in California and want to try our wines, it is a great way to go.  Their shipping costs are way low.  In fact, if you buy 6 bottles or more, they will ship for $.01.  Yes, one penny! 

Give it a try.


March Pick Up and Other Important Events...

~ March Wine Club Pick Up

We won't be having a 'pick up party' per se in March.  However, the March shipment will be available at Crush & Brew beginning March 7.  Come in anytime during the month of March to pick up your wines and enjoy one of C&B's great Cheese Plates, on us, with your complementary wine.  If you come in on March 7 , Gary and I will be there enjoying the Rod Run Cruise and having dinner.  Gary's cool yellow truck should be parked in front.  We'll be leaving the next morning for the Pinot Shootout.

If you just can't make it to C&B in March, you can still pick up your wine up through June, but get it early if you can.  If your wine is shipped, it will go out sometime the first week of March.

~ Blessing of the Vines

The 5th annual Blessing of the vines will be held on Sunday, May 18.  Save that day in your calendar for a fun afternoon of wine, food, music and friends.  Help us start the 2014 vintage right, with a Blessing.  You'll be able to sign up beginning next month. 



~ Singles Mixer at Crush & Brew

Gary and I will be hosting a 'Singles Mixer' at Crush & Brew in June.  You may wonder , and rightly so, why we are doing a Singles Mixer when we've been married since the earth was cooling.  Well....we have several young singles in our Wine Club dept that think it's a great idea and want to run with it.  Who are we to stand in the way of potential true love?

It will be on a Thursday evening in June.  The date hasn't been finalized, but will be soon, so watch for it.  This could be where you meet 'the one'.  Then you can have Woodworth wine at your wedding!

~ July Pick Up Party

This year we are going to have a BBQ and Potluck party here at our vineyards in De Luz.  So, pencil in Saturday, July 19 for a fun afternoon with good BBQ, wine and live music.  It's a potluck too, so be prepared to bring your favorite summer dish.   


~ In the works

We are working with Temecula Cheese Co to schedule a Woodworth wine and cheese pairing evening.  I'd like to do it in April, so we'll keep you posted.  Also, this fall, we plan on a Harvest Dinner here in the vineyards.  Not sure I can get the tables in the vineyard like this, but it does look cool.  We'll send out information as soon as we finalize the dates.


Woof Notes...

This isn't our normal dog picture, but it's just so cute.  Gary and I went camping at the river with some friends last month.  These wild burros come to the road to have carrots fed to them.  This year there were several Mommy/Baby pairs along the road.  This silver pair were just wonderful looking and the Mom loved the carrots.

We hope you enjoyed this month's Newsletter.  If you did, please forward to a friend.

You can find us at or become a fan at  Don't forget to check out our storefront at


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January 2014 ~ Newsletter

Category: Newsletters  |  Permalink

Published: Monday, January 13, 2014

Happening in January...

It's been a ridiculously warm January.  While the rest of America is freezing, we've been between 70 - 80 degrees and dry.  While I'm sure that sounds great to our friends in Minnesota, we really need the rain.  All the leaves are off the vines and we should be pruning in a week or so.








Here's a real short video that shows how the nets are collected.


The avocados are sizing up in the warm weather, so depending on the prices we may pick some of the larger ones (size pick) in a month or so.  The trees are also starting to bloom for next year's fruit.






The Protea is blooming.  Doesn't look like we'll have enough to pick and sell, but will have enough to pick and enjoy.








What is that on the cork? Yuck!....

Relax, it's harmless and perfectly natural. 

Those unappealing crystals that you sometimes find on the bottom of a cork, or see in a glass are tartrates. They are the harmless crystalline deposits that separate from wines during fermentation and aging. The principal component of this deposit is potassium bitartrate, a potassium salt of tartatic acid.

Tartrates separate from new wines because they are less soluble in alcohol. Unfortunately, tartrates may remain in wine after bottling, only to crystallize at some unpredictable later time, usually with exposure to cold. The crystals, though harmless, may be mistaken for broken glass in white wine, or they can just look unappetizing in reds.

To prevent this, we do something called "cold stabilization", in which the wine is cooled to near its freezing point to provoke crystallization before bottling. This doesn't always work, however. So you may open a bottle of wine and find the crystals. Don't be alarmed, they are harmless and shouldn't impact the taste of the wine.


Add Avocado, it's good for you...


As most of you know, Gary and I also grow Avocados. So, since the grapes are dormant and a little boring right now, I thought I'd write a little about one of the healthiest fruits you can eat.

Loma Linda University just published a study on the nutritional benefits of Avocado. The study shows that when ½ of a fresh Avocado is added to a lunch meal, the participants felt more satisfied and had less desire to eat later in the afternoon than eating the same lunch without the Avocado. Now pay attention, here is the really interesting part, the instant rise in insulin levels after eating was lower when the Avocado was eaten than with no Avocado.

So, if you are going to get a burger, have it with Avocado. It won't make the burger a health food, but it will help.

It's Super Bowl/Guacamole season, so here is a really good 'guac' recipe. This one is not only Vegan, but also follows the principles of the Mediterranean diet. Therefore, completely guiltless.


  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 ripe California Avocados
  • 1 ½ lime juice
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • ½ cup roasted corn (thawed if frozen)
  • 1/3rd cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • ¼ cup diced sweet Vidalia onion


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350. Place garlic in a piece of foil and drizzle with olive oil. Wrap the garlic in the foil and roast in the oven for 30 min. Let cool and remove the cloves from the skins.
  2. In a large bowl, mash together the avocado, roasted garlic, lime juice, salt and pepper until creamy.
  3. Add the roasted corn, cherry tomatoes and Vidalia onions. Stir to combine. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.

Right now most of the Avocados in the stores are from Mexico, but in a month or you can start to find California Avocados. So always look for 'Hand Grown in California'.


Time to think about Valentine's Day...

Valentine's Day, or the Feast of Saint Valentine is celebrated in many countries around the world. It began as a religious celebration of Saint Valentine who was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry under the Roman Empire. During his time in prison, it is said that he healed the daughter of his jailer. Legend states that before his execution he wrote her a letter signed 'Your Valentine' as a farewell.

Valentine's Day was associated with romantic love by Chaucer in the High Middle Ages and the tradition of courtly love flourished. In 18th century England it evolved into an occasion for lovers to express their love by giving flowers, candies and hand written notes.

Today the traditional Valentines gifts are Red Roses, Chocolates, and Wine. The two most popular wines for Valentines are sparkling Rose's, like our Luna de Luz Blanc de Noir, or a great red like our 2010 Pinot Noir.

There's plenty of time to pick up something special for your love.


Woof Notes...



Hope you enjoyed our Newsletter this month.  If so, please forward to a friend.  You can check us out at or join us on Facebook at


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Happening at Woodworth ~ December 2013

Category: Newsletters  |  Permalink

Published: Monday, December 09, 2013

The Vineyards in December...

It's been really cold (for SoCal) the last week or so.  The vines have gone dormant, which is good.  Hopefully we will be pruning them back next month   The Sycamores are yellow and brown and loosing their leaves.  Nothing much going on 'farming-wise', just getting ready for Christmas.  You can tell when it's Christmas because the Nutcrackers come out to play.


Wine Pairings for Christmas Dinner...

Last month we talked about pairing wines with Thanksgiving dinner whether you roast, deep fry, BBQ or smoke your turkey.  This month we're going to look at some Christmas Dinner favorites and talk about wines that will complement the main course...whatever it is.

We're only a couple of weeks away from Christmas (eesh!). Besides Turkey, there are several other classic Christmas Dinner dishes. (By the way, if you are serving Turkey, take a look at last months Newsletter for pairing ideas)

Duck & Goose...

... are both classic choices for big family Christmas dinners. Both of these birds are generally roasted, and when done correctly. have more fat and therefore moisture in the meat. Duck and goose are both darker and richer in flavor than a typical turkey.  Pinot Noir is again the classic choice, but let's talk about a couple other great choices...

A 'non oaked'  or lightly oaked Chardonnay will work well with Duck and Goose, so again, try the Woodworth Chardonnay. Tank fermenting and aging retains the softness and structure of a great Chardonnay, and therefore, contrast nicely with the more robust rich flavors of duck and goose. It allows the flavor of the meat to stand out while rounding it out with the rich and not too acidic notes in the wine.

Another great choice for Duck or Goose is Merlot. Our 2009 Merlot is big, layered with black cherries, soft vanilla, violets, and nice herbal notes. Because it has nice tannic structure it creates a wonderful taming and softening of the bold flavors in these birds. We don't have much of it left, so if you are a Merlot girl (or guy) like I am, you need to hurry.

Choose a red blend like 2008 Black Dog if you want a bolder red. The Woodworth Black Dog blend is amazingly full bodied and structured. It's bold profiles of dark fruit, spice, dried flowers, pepper, and licorice guarantee they won't be too weak to stand up to the flavors of these birds.


This is the ultimate spiced meat (yumm!), often studded with cloves and glazed with honey, brown sugar and spice. A classic choice is an 'off-dry' rose or blush wine like the 2012 Golden Maggie. Since this is 100% Pinot Noir and off-dry, it is equally as wonderful as the 2010 Pinot Noir with ham. Because ham is often prepared with spicy-sweetness, this wine compliments it perfectly. It's the perfect palate refresher guaranteeing the flavors of the ham will remain bold and explosive to the very end.  

Prime Rib...

At our house, Christmas Dinner is Prime Rib.  It's big, decadent and rich.This classic meal deserves a classic wine like a bold rich Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon or a Syrah.

It's almost impossible to imagine the 2009 Merlot NOT pairing perfectly with prime rib. They are total complements to each other. Nothing competes, everything harmonizes: The rich meat, the rich wine, the structure, the softness, the elegance all working together.

Unfortunately, we are all out of our 2008 Cabernet. So if you just have to have Cab with your Prime Rib, try picking up a bottle of Jordan Cabernet from the Alexander Valley. Wonderful!

Like the Merlot, you can't go wrong with the 2009 Syrah. The flavors of blackberry and black currant, with hints of earth and tobacco, make this a wonderful complementary wine with Prime Rib.

Merry Christmas & Bon Appetit!


Christmas Specials Online...

There is still time to get some great Woodworth wines for entertaining, gifts, or just to reward yourself for all of your hard work.  You can get 30% of our 2009 Sidekick, an award winning Merlot/Syrah blend.  If you are a dog lover, or someone on your gift list is, try our Vineyard Dog Six-Pack.  A selection of six wines with the beautiful Vineyard Dog labels...15% off! 

Through out the month of December enjoy free shipping when you purchase 4 or more bottles online.

Check out these offers out at Woodworth Wine Store


Woof Notes...


Gary and I wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday Season!

Gary & Marlene

Maggie, Bandit and Hercules

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