Earth Day Every Day: which wine to choose? Five Tips for “green” wine purchases

I’ve been eco-minded since I was small. My first memories are of the sand between my toes, the smell of damp earth under the house, and the joy of being one with a tree or a rock when climbing it. I’m a Girl Scout First Class, I backpacked from Mexico to Canada, and I have a BA from UC Santa Cruz in Environmental Studies plus graduate classes in conservation biology. I’ve hooted for spotted owls, surveyed for goshawks, hacked peregrine falcons, and preserved burrowing owl habitat.

These days, I spend as much time as possible in the outdoors, camping, traveling, and enjoying fine food and wine! Here we are in Zion recently on top of Angel’s Landing–then enjoying a meal with a bottle of Barolo at the campground.

I’m still an environmental activist,  speaking out about environmental issues at City Council and leading monthly bicycle rides around town. You can read more about bicycle issues over at my Bikergo Gal blog.

So, yes I have some serious “green” cred: I’ve been celebrating Earth Day since before it was invented. Caring about how wine is made and how “green” wine is came “naturally” to me–I also grew up running around my grandfather’s cellar!

Like many, I assumed that wine is “natural.” As I’ve learned more about wine over the past few years, I’ve been appalled at how manipulated wine is  and disgusted by some of the green washing that goes on in the wine industry.

So I do my best to navigate my way to purchase wines that are more green on the sustainability spectrum and produced as naturally as possible. And here on this blog, I try my best to call attention to “green” wines and “green” wine practices to support them.

This afternoon, my friend David Rodriguez is visiting from Puerto Rico–we met in Santa Rosa CA at the first Wine Bloggers Conference in 2008. He’s a world traveling wine blogger with a particular interest in wines that are made in traditional, “natural” ways that are sustainable and gentle to the earth. I look forward to learning from him about some of his recent finds –and tasting some of these wines also since many of them he is storing in my grandfather’s cellar!

Here are five choices you can make to green your wine–whether you prefer red or white! Happy Earth Day! Continue reading

WBC-or-Bust, Here I Come!

After a brief hiatus from this blog, I’m back!

Where did I go and why? We went on a road trip to Flagstaff, Utah, and Colorado where we tasted one awesome rhone style wine from grapes grown in the Sedona area (more on this later!), we camped and explored red rock Utah, and finished our trip in Colorado where we stopped at Guy Drew Vineyards tasting room (pictured)  for some surprising and delightful wines.

I’ve also been developing a new blog and business, The Write Alley Coaching and Writing Strategies.

But now I’m getting ready for the 2010 vintage of the North American Wine Bloggers Conference which starts this Friday in Walla Walla Washington thanks to a WBC scholarship. I leave Wednesday morning for a dawn flight from LAX to Seattle where my friend Fred Betz will pick me up for a quick visit and an even quicker lesson in how he can blog and use social media to help promote his business as a painter.

Fred will drive me to Woodinville where I will join the WBC-or-Bust crew of winning bloggers at Chateau Ste Michelle for a lesson in food and wine pairing (complete with food and wine of course), followed by a tasting, a lunch and more wine, a visit to Pike for a guided beer tasting and brewery tour, a few minutes to our selves then dinner at the Waterfront Grill with more wine! I’ll post as much about it and as often as I can!

After all that, I’m meeting with friends Danika Dinsmore and Tod McCoy of En Theos Press. Tod just published and released a book Danika wrote and which I edited so we will be celebrating that too and talking about other writing and publishing projects. Tod has asked me to be on his editorial board as well so we may discuss that too.

I know it sounds like a grueling day, doesn’t it? I can’t wait–I just hope I can sleep tonight!