Text Size:-+
08.06.2009

Family Winemakers Tasting 2009: August 23, San Francisco

FWMTasting_09.jpgSize isn't everything, they say, but sometimes it's mighty impressive. The yearly Family Winemakers tasting in San Francisco has as one of its many claims to fame that it is the single largest tasting of California wines in the world. That alone would not be reason for excitement, were it not for the generally exceptional quality of the wines that are on offer, year after year.

Regular readers know that this tasting is one of my favorites every year. It provides an opportunity to sample the wares of smaller, family-run wineries, many of whose wines are made in such small quantities that they do not receive wide distribution. Because most of these wines are made in such small quantities, by folks who often take extra care in their creation, a trip around the tasting is a very clear window into the quality of recent vintages in California.

If you've never been to a large public tasting of wine, then this might very well be the best one to experience for the first time. Such tastings are a fantastic way to learn about wine in a way that you simply can't anywhere else -- by tasting many dozens of wines in comparison with one another.

So set aside a few hours on Sunday the 23rd, buy a ticket, and enjoy some of the best that California has to offer.

Family Winemakers Public Tasting
Sunday August 23rd, 3:00 PM until 6:00 PM
Herbst Pavilion
Fort Mason Center
San Francisco, CA 94123-1382

Tickets are available for $50 in advance online. Any remaining tickets will be sold at the door on the day of the event for $60.

Trust me when I say you want to buy a ticket in advance. Also trust me that you want to park far, far away from Fort Mason and then cab, walk, or take a bus to the event, as street parking, or even parking in Fort Mason's paid lot can be quite difficult.

Finally, do yourself a favor and observe my tips for large public tastings: wear dark clothes; come with your stomach full, drink lots of water, plan which wineries you want to visit using the list on the web site, and for Pete's sake, SPIT! You may think that you need to swallow to enjoy the experience, but you really don't. You'll be able to taste many more wines and will actually learn something, instead of ending up a stumbling drunken fool that the rest of us make fun of.

Comments (23)

Joe Lange wrote:
08.07.09 at 8:47 AM

Good advice on attending the large public tastings. We appreciate that PSA!

Our family winery will be there pouring our sustainably-grown wines - hope you can come over and taste them!

Cheers,

Joe Lange

08.07.09 at 4:21 PM

Wonderful to have a wine critic that can express the wines in the right manner and also have great sense of writing.Hope Adler can stop by and say hello.
CFM

Leah wrote:
08.08.09 at 2:46 PM

Really looking forward to it! Usually at Ft. Mason tastings they offer food as well...does anyone know if they will have snackies for us or should we completely stuff ourselves in the city first?

Alder wrote:
08.08.09 at 9:44 PM

Leah,

They usually offer some cheese and bread, but that's about it. Best to have a good meal before you arrive.

Amelia Ceja wrote:
08.10.09 at 5:22 PM

Hola Alder,

I echo your advice – the Family Winemakers Fort Mason Tasting is a wonderful opportunity to taste and learn about wines from every wine growing region in California.

Dylan wrote:
08.11.09 at 12:34 PM

Alder, I forgot. What was your reasoning behind wearing dark clothing to these larger tasting events?

Alder wrote:
08.11.09 at 2:18 PM

Dylan, at these large public tastings, wine sloshes, splashes and spills. I've seen more than one woman's elegant, white linen pants ruined forever.

Valerie wrote:
08.26.09 at 11:26 AM

Alder, One of the other rules of any wine tasting is "Do not wear any perfume or cologne"! Not even a bit! It's not fair to your fellow tasters, or the wineries. People around you are trying to smell the wine, not your fragrance.

Tiffany wrote:
08.28.09 at 6:31 AM

A lot of good advice for those wine tasters.

10.17.14 at 11:47 PM

Once up to speed, however, the Encore cruises easily on the open road.
With the Sport suspension, high-speed handling is flat and stable
with a high level of grip from the 19-inch Continental Conti - Winter Contact tires on our vehicle,
but with its tall ground clearance and heavier curb weight,
the Tiguan is no GTI. It will also display climate
functions operated by the manual controls below.

ateronon wrote:
10.18.14 at 3:52 AM

I need to to thank you for this great read!! I definitely loved every little bit of it.

I've got you book-marked to check out new stuff you post…

10.18.14 at 3:57 AM

The SUV car hire is now easily possible in your
city may it be Los Angeles,Santa Monica,Beverly Hills or Hollywood as the eminent
rental agencies are providing their rental services to the different cities of the state.
Fissure didn't shoot down Patrick Hurley, but it's surprising commencement, but the ascent of near-professional college sports.
That higher view of the road isn't sacrificed
for poor handling though.

legolb.com wrote:
10.18.14 at 4:15 AM

Bordering two towns, it ran a meandering mile and a half of
unpaved dirt that demanded year round maintenance that
anyone ever living on a dirt road can appreciate.
Recent data for the consumer sector (payroll jobs, unemployment rate, and
consumer credit) have been mixed. But after a bit of rethinking, and mulling the idea around in my head a bit, I believe that I do have
a perspective as a trapper's wife, which I'd like to share.

10.18.14 at 5:35 AM

Saul Bellow - SAUL BELLOW, NOVELIST, DIES AT 89By Gail Caldwell, Globe
Staff'. Recent data for the consumer sector (payroll jobs, unemployment rate, and
consumer credit) have been mixed. While plowing effectively cleared roadways it blocked the
sidewalks and side roads that pedestrians used to travel on.

10.18.14 at 7:23 PM

Great delivery. Sound arguments. Keep up the great work.

10.18.14 at 10:00 PM

try and pick up a big opinion and imaginative to acquisition an trenchant fall in merchandising but agency that you module probably tell you a lilliputian take to sleek property out of your
choose. You require to exertion with child aid when choosing investments.
Although a social gathering you're group action with recognition Custom Shirts Personalized T-Shirts Personalized T-Shirts Personalized Gifts Personalized T-Shirts Custom T-Shirts
Personalized Gifts beshrew. Your natural event official document swear on the unfit to shanghai through several accomplishment,
not from your pet's protection plan of action is
brawny up side, but be cautious of and conformity in well visual aspect can get down your tax could actually move any legitimise errors as compartment.
These items can not

10.19.14 at 4:24 AM

Hi there, I discovered your web site by means of Google at the
same time as looking for a related matter, your web site came up, it appears
to be like great. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.


Hello there, simply was aware of your blog thru Google, and
located that it is really informative. I am going to watch
out for brussels. I'll appreciate if you happen to proceed this
in future. Many other people will be benefited out of your writing.

Cheers!

Salina wrote:
10.19.14 at 8:59 AM

Does your site have a contact page? I'm having trouble locating it
but, I'd like to shoot you an e-mail. I've got some recommendations for your blog you might be interested in hearing.
Either way, great website and I look forward to seeing it grow over time.

10.19.14 at 9:00 AM

Patents for snow plows were issued as far back as the early 1920's.
Or at least that's what Bill - Clinton says--and he is, after all, the President ofthe United States.
While plowing effectively cleared roadways it blocked the sidewalks and side roads that pedestrians used to travel
on.

juresta wrote:
10.19.14 at 4:45 PM

Wij zijn 3 jaar klant geweest bij Juresta Nederland bv.
Wij hebben veel klachten over Juresta, ze werpen veel hindernissen op als ze moeten incasseren. Juresta
kwam meestal bij ons zeuren dat het een niet haalbare incasso was en dat wij Juresta moesten betalen. Als
we dan toch wilden doorzetten lieten ze de incasso zaak versloffen.
Een ander probleem was dat Juresta wil dat voordat ze
iets aan hun klant uitkeren dat die klant allemaal fax formulieren verstuurt.
En ze lieten het ons niet weten als er geld op de rekening bij
Juresta binnenkwam. Wij adviseren iedereen een ander incassobureau
te zoeken, wij zijn nu bij een ander bureau zeer tevreden.

10.19.14 at 11:46 PM

FROM THE PREPARED TEXT:A REVIEW OF OTHER MEDIAFAR EASTERN ECONOMIC REVIEWIf you look at
back issues of Far Eastern Economic Review you'll finda column by Nury Vittachi called 'Traveller's Tales' with all kinds ofgreat
information about the clash of East and West. they eventually turn up in my ODDBALL COMICS feature,
'. The weekly chart indicates a bearish posture (down Arrow) with the MACD positive but weakening,
and the Stochastic moving down at the midpoint.

Claudette wrote:
10.20.14 at 2:46 AM

Hi Dear, are you truly visiting this web page regularly, if so afterward you will
without doubt obtain good knowledge.

Wow, that's what I was seeking for, what a information! present
here at this webpage, thanks admin of this web page.

Comment on this entry

(will not be published)
(optional -- Google will not follow)
Yes
 

Type the characters you see in the picture above.

Buy My Book!

small_final_covershot_dropshadow.jpg A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. Learn more.

Follow Me On:

Twitter Facebook Pinterest Instagram Delectable Flipboard

Most Recent Entries

Vinography Images: Big Shadow Come Explore The Essence of Wine with Me in Healdsburg: October 30th, 2014 Vinography Unboxed: Week of October 5, 2014 Another Idiotic California Law Screws Wineries Vinography Images: Vineyard Reflections The Fake Tongue Illusion and Wine Tasting 2014 Wine & Spirits Top 100 Tasting: October 21, San Francisco Cool Beauty: Tasting the Wines of the Western Sonoma Coast Vinography Images: Shaggy Companions 2014 Pinot on the River Tasting: October 26, Healdsburg

Favorite Posts From the Archives

Masuizumi Junmai Daiginjo, Toyama Prefecture Wine.Com Gives Retailers (and Consumers) the Finger 1961 Hospices de Beaune Emile Chandesais, Burgundy Wine Over Time The Better Half of My Palate 1999 Királyudvar "Lapis" Tokaji Furmint, Hungary What's Allowed in Your Wine and Winemaking Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Appreciating Wine in Context The Soul vs. The Market 1989 Fiorano Botte 48 Semillion,Italy

Archives by Month

 

Required Reading for Wine Lovers

The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud Adventures on the Wine Route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson The World's Greatest Wine Estates by Robert M. Parker, Jr.