Thank you for visiting the Baroness Wines special events Blog. This site was designed to efficiently deliver important information to our customers, suppliers and employees. More importantly, this site offers these groups and opportunity to communicate easily about your wines, our market and our mutual love of wine.

Thank you,

Ari Walker


From the Left Coast to the Mountains

With the harvest behind us and the Thanksgiving Open House over, Left Coast Cellars Winemaker/Viticulturist, Luke McCollom, is finally taking a short break from the estate to join Baroness for the Colorado Mountain Trade tasting.  A fifteen year veteran of the wine industry, despite his young age, Luke left California several years ago to develop the Left Coast Cellars project and currently produces Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Chardonnay from the 305 acre estate in the Willamette Valley.

Luke will be proudly pouring the following selections:

  • 2006 Pinot Gris
  • 2005 Chardonnay
  • 2005 Cali’s Cuvee Pinot Noir
  • 2005 Latitude 45 Pinot Noir
  • 2005 Suzanne’s Estate Reserve Pinot Noir

While tasting through the line-up of wines crafted to express the unique character of the estate, be sure to ask Luke about the other Left Coast projects which include a major solar panel installation and a European truffle cultivation endeavor.  Learn more on our Left Coast blog at http://leftcoastcellars.wordpress.com/ or on our website at www.leftcoastcellars.com.


Winemaker/Viticulturist Luke McCollom checks sugar levels a day before harvest.

Winemaker/Viticulturist Luke McCollom checks sugar levels a day before harvest.


2 weeks away from the big events !!!

Hello everyone,

The Colorado Mountain Trade Tastings are only 2 weeks away, winter is upon us and the mountain towns are poised for another great season.  If I can help anyone with questions about the upcoming tastings, things to see and do in Aspen, Vail and Telluride or anything else, please don’t hesitate to contact me at glennsteckler@baronesswines.com or 303-419-3679.  Keep praying to the snow gods!!!                –Glenn


Blair Taylor, Enotec Imports.

Just back from Piedmont and the 2008 Barolo’s will be great.

Hi everyone.

I am pleased to report that the 2008 vintage in Italy will be very promising.  The reports of a very wet spring and early summer had many people questioning the quality this year. However beginning in August the weather became quite dry and sunny which allowed the grapes to mature beautifully.  Harvest in Piedmont for the Nebbiolo finished around October 15th.  The alcohol levels will be a little lower this year than in the past few vintages, which in my opinion makes the wines more classic in style.

The other varietals, Dolcetto and Barbera will also be quite good this year.

See you all in the mountains.



Dutton Estate Winery

Greetings! Thank you for taking the time to read the blog on Dutton Estate Winery.  The Dutton Family is absolutley thrilled to take part in Baroness Wine Mountain Tasting experience.  Being a small producer within our family’s realm of grapegrowing in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County, we will bring to you in Colorado the best wines of our family estate vineyards!  As we have been making wines for 13 years, Dutton Estate wines are new to the Colorado market.  We will be showcasing our current and newest releases, most of which are rated 90 to 95 points in the Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast.  Please take a few moments to read about our family history and  our winery.


Joe Dutton, co-owner of Dutton Ranch is dedicated to tirelessly persevering the legacy of world-class grape production his father started in 1964.  Joe along with his wife Tracy, relish and savor the myriad of wines produced from the 65 vineyards of Dutton Ranch.  Tracy and Joe Dutton established a winery in 1995 as a desire to create a complementary business to grape growing, where they would bring up their three daughters.  The inaugural release was two wines – Sebastopol Vineyards Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.  Now thirteen years into production with their winemaker Mat Gustafson, the wines of Dutton Estate are limited to 4,000 cases, six varietals and twelve vineyard-designated wines. These wines have been available at the winery, to the Dutton wine club members and few select markets.  In ramping up production in 2006 and 2007 to sustain demand for its over-sold wines, Dutton Estate is meeting the demand with a larger portion of the single vineyard wines to compliment the growing luxury restaurant wine lists.

The Dutton Estate wine program was formed to produce single vineyard wines. For this program, Joe and Tracy opt for selected estate family vineyards within Dutton Ranch, which Joe vigilantly manages and farms. The results are reminiscent wines of distinctive vineyard locations, microclimates, clone selections and soil types. The wines express their individual site by means of low-input winemaking and articulate the unique terroir of the land. Varietals of sauvignon blanc, chardonnay, pinot noir and syrah are produced to fashionably speak each chosen spot within the coolest, foggiest place in Sonoma County, the Green Valley-Russian River appellation.Dutton Estate wines are the reflection of our family and our vineyards”.

Since the winery’s inception, Sebastopol Vineyards and Dutton Estate wine production was in a quaint f arm building at the winery’s property located on one of their vineyards in the Russian River Valley. In spring of 2006, a new winery building constructed along side of the old barn is now home for Dutton Estate wines as well as a small number of high-end wine producers. The winery’s permit is a modest annual production of 20,000 cases; the reserved capacity represents a promise of excellence for our growing Dutton Estate wine brand. You are invited to share a taste of our home.

“The passion at Dutton Estate Winery is to produce unparalleled vineyard designated pinot noir, chardonnay and syrah. Creatively working together with winemaker Mat Gustafson, the commitment is to express the terrior from the selected estate family vineyards at Dutton Ranch. With a devoted grape grower and a loyal winemaker, the results are unsurpassed and individually expressed in Dutton Estate wines.”

8757 Green Valley Road – Sebastopol – California 95472 (Tel) 707.829.9463 (Fax) 707.829.5368


Cheers and we look forward to seeing you very soon!

Tracy Dutton, President

Meet Ben Casteel of Bethel Heights Vineyard

ben-portraitIf you come to the Baroness tastings next month, you’ll meet Ben Casteel pouring Bethel Heights wines.

Ben is one of the second generation now coming on board at Bethel Heights. Oldest son of Terry Casteel and Marilyn Webb (two of the founders),  Ben grew up at Bethel Heights and worked in the vineyard during the summers. All he knew when he left for college was that he wanted to get as far away from the place as possible. Graduating from the University of Oregon in 1999 with a double major in English literature and philosophy, he thought he would become a university professor, but when the opportunity came along to work crush in Burgundy at Domaine des Perdrix, he couldn’t resist the opportunity. The experience proved to be the pivotal point in Ben’s return to wine. “I realized that wine was always around when I was growing up, whether I was cognizant of it or not” he explains. “Looking at the world after college, I was undirected. In Burgundy, pinot noir is all around; it’s everything.”

On return from Burgundy, Ben spent the next five years at Rex Hill Vineyards, working his way up from cellar rat to Cellar Master and then Assistant Winemaker. In 2005 he finally came back to Bethel Heights, where he became Co-Winemaker with his father.  Although they didn’t agree on everything, they did agree on fundamentals.  Satisfied that Ben was ready to take over the reins, in 2006 Terry decided to retire to Emeritus status and hand over the day to day winemaking responsibilities completely to Ben.

At the Baroness tastings in December you’ll be able to taste two of the wines that Ben produced in his first solo vintage: the 2006 Casteel Reserve Pinot Noir and the 2006 Estate Chardonnay.  I’m sure you’ll agree that we’re lucky to have him in the family, and I’m not just saying that because I’m his aunt.   I’ve been following Ben around documenting the 2008 vintage for our Bethel Heights Blog (bhvblog.wordpress.com), and I must say he seems to know what he’s doing!

Pat Dudley, Bethel Heights Marketing Director


Exciting Times at Pali Wine Company

Things sure are crazy around here! We are just finishing up our first harvest in a brand-new winery, with lots of brand-new equipment and a brand-new winemaker! We brought in many new varietals this year (as we have only produced Pinot Noir in the past) and that certainly added to the excitement.

As Pali Wine Company is new to the Colorado market, allow me to provide a bit of background about us. Pali Wine Company was started in 2005 by a group of friends from Pacific Palisades, CA (hence the name “Pali” – pronounced pal-ee). The wines were made entirely by Brian Loring and his sister Kimberly (of Loring Wine Company) at their facility from the start. All of our current releases (2006, 2007) are the products of Brian and Kimberly’s hard work. Since last year’s harvest, much has changed. We finally moved into our state-of-the-art, custom built winery in Lompoc, Ca (Santa Barbara County). We share the building with the Lorings, but they are no longer the winemakers for us. I was hired in July of 2007 as a cellar hand and have grown into the position of Staff Winemaker. This past July (2008) we parted ways with Brian and Kimberly (on very good terms, I might add) and hired Kenneth Juhasz, of Auteur Wines, as our Consulting Winemaker. Kenneth and I have worked very closely this harvest to produce some “kick-ass” wines. We are still focused primarily on Pinot Noir, but are also making some Chardonnay, Grenache and a Bordeaux style blend from Napa Valley.

Needless to say, harvest has been both very exciting and very tiring. I couldn’t be more thrilled about all of the changes that have taken place recently. There were many kinks to work out in the beginning, which added to the stress. But now that we are at the end of it all, I can take a look back and say that things went really well – and we are poised for a wonderful future.

And since I have not had a single day off since the end of August, I am very excited about coming to the mountains! I am looking forward to a bit of an escape and I can’t wait to try all the other amazing wines that will be there!

I look forward to meeting you all.

Please visit our website at www.paliwineco.com

– Aaron Walker, Staff Winemaker, Pali Wine Company

Looking forward to a great event

Northwest Core is looking forward to another great line-up of mountain tastings.  I’ll be covering a table with A to Z Wineworks, Bergstrom Winery, Penner-Ash Wine Cellars and Solena Cellars.  My friend, Ben Casteel, will also be at the events covering the Bethel Heights wines.  We are releasing many exciting new wines from the 2007 vintage in Oregon, so stop by the table and check them out.

The cycle of harvest...

The cycle of harvest....

Please visit http://www.nwcorecollection.com for more information about Northwest Core Collection and the wineries we represent.


Tom Kenefick