We also met some local amateur winemakers that were there learning, networking and enjoying some wine for a few days.
conference recap Noel Powell (photo to the right) and I had exchanged a few e-mails before leaving for the conference and hoped to meet each other during it. We actually did, while standing in line. We hadn’t seen each other yet and both of us happened to turn in the right direction at the right time and were staring at each other. We enjoyed some meals and wine together, talked shop and had some good laughs. Noel, Margot and I sat together at dinner where we met Kelly & Robbie Rogers from NC. What a blast that night. As a table we took home 13 medals. Not bad for some folks from the East Coast!
Immediately after the awards dinner Joanne and Barry Crawford (in the picture below) found us and introduced themselves indicating they were from Georgetown, MA and were excited to meet some other local winemakers. Lucky for her Noel was there, and from Westford, MA, so she was even more excited that we WERE finding each other and lived close enough that we would be able to meet again. Joanne was also award winning from the same night, something we all thought the folks from CA should keep in mind. Joanne proposed a group tasting of our wines and we all agreed it should happen.
Manchester Area Wine Lovers Meetup.com group. This was my second event with the group and was meeting all but one of them for the first time. I knew this was going to be good.
Joanne brought her Marilyn Merlot, Lambrusco and Pinot Noir.
Margot and I selected Amarone #1 from 2008, a Pinot Noir 2009 and the Plum/Riesling also from 2009.
The wines were received with considerable comment, some surprise and plenty of refills! All of the wines were worthy of drinking, personal tastes aside. The reds were the big winners on the day and were only matched by Noel's Chardonnays that split the group between a dry Chablis style and fuller bodied lightly oaked version.
We also collaborated with guests on snacks and ended up with a fantastic spread of cheese, crackers, spreads, cured meats, olives, filo cups, bread & oil and desserts. So many things that went well with the selection of wines. No wonder there was a period of time I was bringing the wine to the dining room where the food was. That was before I spilled some of my own wine onto me whilst pouring a fresh glass. Too funny, and I did have a buzz.
I asked my friend Josh Mazgelis if he would like to come and take pictures for the afternoon. Josh has a 365 Photoblog going and loves the opportunity to shoot so this worked great. The pictures throughout this blog are works of his and I think they go a long way to elevate the story surrounding the event. Hopefully Josh will help me learn more about working the camera with food so I can do more at home with my smaller projects.
As guests arrived we had lots of mutual introductions and joyous conversations were going on everywhere. The wine was flowing and each winemaker was serving their own, others and guests were comfortable enough to grab more as needed. It was a very relaxed and conversation filled afternoon.
As the day wound down we grabbed some group pictures and bid farewell to new friends who we hope to see again soon.
There are more photos below from the aftenoon.