Announcing A Menu For Hope 2008: Win Fabulous Wine Prizes

menu_for_hope_V.jpgHow would you like to go a luxury wine vacation all the while knowing that you’re enjoying Napa luxury because you helped to feed some hungry schoolkids in Lesotho, Africa? That, my friends, is the beauty of the charity event called A Menu For Hope.

This is the fifth year of A Menu For Hope, the grassroots charity event for wine and food bloggers that started in response to the horrible Tsunamis of 2004. Last year’s event raised more than $90,000 for the UN’s World Food Programme, which set up a special arrangement so that 100% of the proceeds went to the people we were trying to help.

This year we’re doing the same thing. Helping the same people, the same way. By holding a big-ass charity raffle, with prizes donated from bloggers all around the world.

Here at Vinography, we’re hosting all the prizes donated by wine bloggers, plus some very special prizes donated by folks who look kindly on this effort. Before I tell you about the prizes on offer, however, you should know that winning a prize is as easy as making a $10 donation to our cause. Every ten bucks you donate gets you another “ticket” for the raffle. You designate which prize you want your “ticket” to go for, and then a computer program gives you that many chances to win. Donate $5000 and you’ve got 500 chances to win one, or many prizes.

Specific instructions for entering the raffle can be found at the bottom of this post. But let’s get on with the prizes shall we? If you don’t see something below that you think is worth ten bucks, then you’re probably beyond hope yourself. Pay special attention to the prize codes. You’ll need them when you donate.

A Wine Vacation at Meadowood Resort in the Napa ValleyWB03_large.jpg
Experience true Napa luxury. This prize includes a two night stay (Sunday to Thurs only) at the Meadowood Resort in St. Helena in the Napa Valley; dinner for two at the Michelin Two-Star Meadowood Restaurant; and a private Cabernet tasting in the Napa Valley with Gilles de Chambure, the wine educator at Meadowood. Located in a beautiful, two hundred-fifty acre valley, Meadowood features championship croquet lawns, seven tennis courts, a nine-hole walking golf course, hiking trails, swimming, a full-service health spa, eighty-five guest rooms, suites and cottages and wine country cuisine. Valued at over $3500. Prize code: WB01. Courtesy of Meadowood Resort.

Dinner in New York with Eric Asimov of the New York TimesWB02_big.jpg
Eric Asimov is the chief wine critic of The New York Times, a position he assumed in June 2004 after having covered wine with The Times’ tasting panel and in his “Tastings” column for the Dining section. He’s one of America’s most visible wine writers, and a darn nice guy to boot. So nice, in fact, that he’s willing to have dinner with someone for charity. For this prize, he’ll buy dinner for one lucky wine lover somewhere on the island of Manhattan that has a great wine list. You choose the date, he chooses the restaurant, and you can talk about whatever you want, even if it isn’t wine. Value: Priceless. Prize code: WB02. Courtesy of The Pour.

Blackbird Vineyards Magnum and Ma(i)sonry Tasting
Blackbird Vineyards is one of the hottest new wineries in Napa Valley, if only according to Vinography. This prize includes an etched magnum of the 2006 Illustration Red Wine and a certificate for a private tasting of the Blackbird Vineyards portfolio for four people at the newly opened Ma(i)sonry in Yountville. Ma(i)sonry is a “living gallery” event space, tasting room, and exclusive lounge in the heart of Napa Valley. Prize code: WB03. Courtesy of Blackbird Vineyards and Ma(i)sonry.

Wine and Film Premieres from Wilson DanielsWB04_bg.jpg
One of the country’s most respected wine importers, Wilson Daniels Ltd., is celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2008. The Napa Valley-based company has created a Menu For Hope six-bottle collection of wines from its portfolio of European wine estates, offering bidders an opportunity to taste wines from six different regions spanning three countries — with a high-definition twist. Winners will receive the following wines:

NV Delamotte Brut Cotes des Blancs Grand Cru
2006 Domaine Marc Kreydenweiss Kritt Gewurztraminer Alsace
2005 Domaine Faiveley Nuits-Saint-Georges
2006 Domaine Philippe & Vincent Jaboulet Crozes-Hermitage Rouge
2004 Castello di Volpaia Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG
1996 Royal Tokaji Nyulászó First Growth Tokaji Aszú 6 Puttonyos

This fall, Wilson Daniels premiered documentary-style films for its French and Hungarian wine estates, which the winning bidder can watch online or download to an iPod at to “virtually” tour the vineyards and meet the winemakers before, after, or while they taste the wines. Value: $275. Prize Code: WB04. Courtesy of Wilson Daniels Ltd.

A Case of Zinfandel with Your Own Professionally Designed Custom Label.Domaine de Bob 200 x 200.jpg
This prize would be good enough just as a case of Brutocao Cellars Zinfandel. But you not only get a case of wine, you get this wine with your own personalized custom label on it. Whatever you want it to say, whatever you want it to look like. Value: $700. Prize code: WB05. More details at Corked: A Wine Blog.

Two World Class Gruner Veltliners and a set of World Class White Wine Glasseswb07_lg.jpg
This prize includes a set of six Denkart Zalto white wine glasses and the two most highly rated Gruner Veltliners in the Winemonger inventory, the 2006 and 2007 Donabaum Spitzer Point GV Smaragd Gruner Veltliner from Austria. The wines speak for themselves, but you should know about the glasses. 100% lead free and dishwasher safe, these glasses were created for the complexity and refinement of the most expressive white wines. Technical perfection is the basic principle of the Zalto Glass Manufactury. Zalto Glasses have always been produced following a tradition of using only the most highly skilled glass-blowers working with a selection of the best raw materials. The curve of the bowls are tilted at the angles of 24°, 48° and 72°, which are in accordance to the tilt angles of the Earth. This stunning glass has become the standard for many world-class tasting rooms and well-set tables. Shipping within the USA only. Value: more than $415. Prize Code: WB07. More details at

Half Case of Verge Syrah, and a Tour of the Vineyardvsy200px.jpg
Join VERGE Winemaker Mike Brunson for a special tour of Bradford Mountain where you will see firsthand what it means to farm on the edge of the wild. At just over 1200 feet elevation, Bradford Mountain is on the far western edge of Dry Creek Valley in Sonoma County. VERGE Wine Cellars produces small lots of block specific Syrah and these organcially grown vineyards are perfect examples of what we call Fringe Vineyards. Mike Brunson has over 15 years winemaking experience and will describe the ins and outs of organic viticulture, mountain farming, and Syrah winemaking. After the hike, you’ll enjoy a tasting of Syrahs from Bradford Mountain as well as a selection of other Syrahs from around the world. As a parting gift, you will also recieve 6 bottles of VERGE Wine Cellars’ inaugural release, the 2006 VERGE Syrah. Value: $240. Prize code: WB08. Courtesy of Verge Cellars.

Wine Book BonanzaWB09books_lg.jpg
There’s only one thing better than drinking wine, and that’s drinking wine with a nice wine book on your lap. Here’s your chance to add to your library and maybe learn a thing or two in the process. Courtesy of University of California Press, pick any 5 wine books from their current list of titles. Value: approx $150. Prize Code:WB09. Courtesy of University of California Press.

Wine Travel Guide VoucherGift_Voucher 200 x 114.jpg
The main raffle prize on offer from Wine Travel Guides is a gold gift subscription to Wine Travel Guides (worth £49 or approximately $75 or $60) which lasts a whole year from activation. This will give you access to all the travel guides on the site. Today there are 46 comprehensive guides to the wine regions of France. By mid-January there will be a further seven guides covering Tuscany in Italy, Rioja in Spain and Mosel in Germany. Here is your chance to plan that trip to the wine regions of Europe with expert insider advice from 15 top-class wine and travel writers.

The bonus offer: If you can meet author Wink Lorch in either the Jura or Savoie wine regions of France, she will personally drive you around the wine region for a day, meeting and tasting with some of her favourite wine growers and taking you out to lunch. Value: $80 or more. Prize Code:WB10. Courtesy of Wink Lorch.

The Flavors of Napa and SonomaWB11_big.jpg
Take home this package of single vineyard wines from Belle Glos, Signorello Vineyards, Page Wine Cellars, and Rossi-Wallace and see for yourself if California has any real terroir.

Prize winners will receive a case of Signorello Vineyards’ 2005 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon; three Magnums of Belle Glos’ 2007 Pinot Noirs, one from each Single Vineyard Designate the Sonoma wine label offers (Los Alturas, Clark and Telephone and Taylor Lane Vineyards); and a six year vertical of Page Wine Cellars Proprietary Red Wine.

The prize also includes a half case (four Chardonnay and two Pinot Noir) of wines from Rossi-Wallace Vineyards. This is a new venture from legendary Napa Valley winemaker Ric Forman and his wife, Cheryl Emmolo. 2007 is the inaugural vintage and neither the Chardonnay, which comes from Rutherford’s esteemed Star Vineyard, nor the Pinot Noir, from Napa Valley’s Atlas peak, have been released to the public. Yet.

In addition, world-renowned wine and food professionals Thomas Keller and Karen MacNeil will help you figure out what to pair with your fabulous new wines. This prize also includes an autographed copy of Thomas Keller’s The French Laundry Cookbook, and autographed copy of Karen MacNeil’s Wine, Food & Friends and MacNeil’s 2009 Wine Lovers’ Page-A-Day calendar. Value: The wines alone are worth almost $2,000. Prize Code: WB11. Courtesty of Aficionada.

Inaugural Vintage of Capture’s Tin Cross Vineyards Sauvignon Blancwb14_bg.jpg
This prize consists of a bottle from the first launch of Capture Winery’s 2008 Tin Cross Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc. This wine is the unprecedented, first product of the winemaking team’s efforts with Tin Cross being to be released in Spring 2009. Additionally, this wine will arrive paired with an elegantly framed vision of its origin; an image of Tin Cross’ upper vineyard, professionally photographed and signed by the renowned Olaf Beckman. The total package is valued at $542. Prize Code:WB14. More details at Our Wine Story.

Giant Wine Map of Californiawb12_lg.jpg
California is the second in our series of wine maps and the latest installment in our attempt to become the Edward Tufte of the wine world. The regular retail size of this map is 24 x 36 inches, however, this one will be custom printed at a giant 4 feet wide by 6 feet tall. We’re finishing the artwork right now, so be the first on your block (actually on the entire planet) to have a Giant Wine Map of California. To get a better idea of the style and quality, please take a look at our map of the Iberian Peninsula. The map of California will be just as obsessively accurate, up to date and – all importantly – suitable for framing (if you can find a frame that large). This item can only be delivered to US addresses. Estimated Value: $400. Prize Code:WB12. Courtesy of DeLong Wine Moment.

Labor of Love In The South of FranceWB15_lg.jpg
Planning a trip to southern France? Why not spend a day learning what it’s really like to own a vineyard or work in a winery! Depending on the time of year you visit, we could be pruning, plowing, picking grapes, bottling, making wine or even selling it. Our vineyards, located at the foot of the medieval village of Castillon du Gard in the southern Rhône valley, are the prefect place to enjoy a day of (very rewarding) manual labor. To celebrate your accomplishments we will prepare a gourmet dinner for you and your fellow workers at our house!

Locally grown products will grace the table and all courses will be paired with the best our local winemakers have to offer. We will taste wines from all around the southern Rhone, not just La Gramière, and you (the winner) will be paid for your hard work with 6 bottles of the current vintage of La Gramière. Now all that’s left for you to do is plan a trip to Southern France! Prize code: WB15. Courtesy of La Gramiere.

Private Wine Blending SessionWB18_lg.jpg
Learn how to blend wine at an intimate wine blending event for eight people at Crushpad, San Francisco’s luxury custom winery. You’ll have the help of one of Crushpad’s resident winemakers and you’ll go home with t-shirts and a wine blending kit of your own so you can try your skills at making a few bottles of wine for yourself or for friends. Value: $500. Prize code: WB16. Courtesy of Crushpad.

Port Wine Starter Set from QuevedoMenu fo Hope 200x200.jpg
If you’re a lover of port wine, or think you might be, you’ll enjoy this gift: A Port Wine Starter Kit made up of:
– port wine tongs
– port wine filter
– port wine decanter
– port wine cups
– dark chocolate
– a coupon for a bottle of Quevedo 2005 Vintage redeemable at the closest wine shop that carries the wine. Value: $90. Prize Code: WB17. More details at Quevedo Wine.

Exclusive Wine Accessory SetWB18_big.jpg
This prize includes four exclusive wine accessories developed by Wine Line:

-Wine Vine 12 bottle stainless steel wine rack
-Wine Flyte Carrier–for easily serving 6 glasses of wine, carrying & drying glasses as well-patent pending
-Wine Aerator w/single glass adapter-patent pending
-Chateau Epernay Handmade Rosewood Corkscrew in gift box

These accessories make fantastic gifts for wine lovers. Value: $200.00. Prize Code: WB18. Courtesy of WineLine

Custom 90 Minute Wine Seminarwb20-200.jpg
Bill Wilson, the host and producer of the Wine for Newbies Podcast will offer a 90-minute live wine seminar. The winner of this prize can choose the topic(s) for this wine seminar which he’ll broadcast via streaming video at a time and date of the winner’s choosing. The winner can have as many people participate as he or she wants! Since the seminar will be live via the Internet, the winner can be anywhere, as long as they understand English. Prize code: WB20. Courtesy of Wine for Newbies.

A Case of Exclusive Small Production Wines from RaymondWB22_lg.jpg
Raymond Vineyards is a 5th generation, family-run small winery in Napa Valley. They recently started proding a series of wines known as “small lot” wines, which are made in quantities between 50 and 400 cases and are only available at the winery. This prize includes a mixed case of these new releases. Three bottles each of 2007 Small Lot Rosé of Merlot; 2005 Small Lot Red Wine; 2005 Small Lot Petite Sirah; 2005 Small Lot Meritage Red. Value $475. Prize Code: WB22. Courtesy of Raymond Vineyards.

P.S. I Love You – A Case of Petite Sirahwb07_lg.jpg
Jo Diaz has a thing for Petite Sirah. And so do her clients, a society of winemakers and winegrowers known as P.S. I Love You. Jo and her clients are donating a case of California Petite Sirahs for your enjoyment. Here’s the list of wines included:

2005 August Briggs, Napa Valley
2006 Biale Royal Punishers, Napa Valley
2005 Clayhouse Estate, Paso Robles
2004 EOS Estate Winery, Paso Robles
2005 Foppiano Vineyards, Russian River Valley Estate
2006 Line 39, Lake County
2004 Mettler Family Vineyards, Lodi
2006 Mounts Family Winery, Dry Creek Valley
2005 Parducci “True Grit,” Mendocino
2005 Pedroncelli, Dry Creek Valley
2005 Silkwood, Stanislaus County
2005 Stags’ Leap Winery, Napa Valley
2006 Stanton Vineyards, Oakville
2005 Twisted Oak, Calaveras County
2005 Victor Hugo, Paso Robles
2006 Wilson Vineyards, Clarksburg

This wine can be shipped to any legal destination in the USA. Valued at over $350. Prize code: WB23. More details at Juicy Tales.

Kendall-Jackson Owl Box Adoption Giftwb24_lg.jpg
As part of its special relationship with the non-profit Hungry Owl Project, Kendall-Jackson is pleased to present a limited Owl Box Adoption Gift that offers an opportunity to adopt a wooden barn owl nesting box located on Kendall-Jackson’s Hawkeye Mountain estate vineyards.

The Kendall-Jackson Owl Box Adoption Gift features:
– A year-long adoption of one of the 100 barn owl nesting boxes located on Kendall-Jackson’s Hawkeye Mountain vineyards. A report will be sent to each adoptive box sponsor within one year to report on owl activity at the site such as the birth of baby owls.

– One bottle each of Kendall-Jackson Vintner’s Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Grand Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon and Highland Estates Hawkeye Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon.

– A signed, limited edition watercolor print of the Hungry Owl Project wildlife ambassador, painted by Hungry Owl Project volunteer Mary Blake.

Only 100 of these packages will be produced. Shipping available to Alaska (excluding dry areas), Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut,
Washington DC, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan,
Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New
York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, Texas,
Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia (excluding dry areas),
Wisconsin, Wyoming. Value $500. Prize Code: WB24. Courtesy of the Kendall-Jackson Owl Project.

A Night of Wine and Food in Florence for Two with Award Winning Sommelier ServicesWB25_lg.jpg
Enjoy an evening for two persons in Florence, Tuscany in a historical Trattoria with a complete menu from “crostini” to their typical biscuits and soups and meat and eveything you can expect from a Trattoria that’s been running for more than 100 years. All the food will be paired with wines personally by European Second Best Sommelier and Wine Blogger Andrea Gori (if you want him!).

Among the wines he is excited for you to taste will be the 2005 Pegasos Soldera Case Basse, the new shocking wine from Montalcino, that in Italy they all love so much but Wine Spectator continues to rate so low (70 or below) every time…

If it’s impossible for the winner to get to Florence, they will ship that wine directly to the winner. So go on and donate! Value: $200. Prize Code: WB25. More details at Vino da Burde.

A Vertical of Twisted Spaniardspaniard_mfh_200.jpg
Twisted Oak Winery in Calaveras County, California is pleased to
contribute a special vertical of its flagship blend, The Spaniard. One
bottle each of the 2002, 2004, 2005, and 2006 vintages (there was no
2003 vintage.) The Spaniard is a blend of Tempranillo, Graciano, and
Garnacha grapes grown entirely in Calaveras County at Twisted Oak
Winery. An Original Recipe Twisted Oak Rubber Chicken will of course
be included. Value is $250. Prize Code: WB26. More details at El Bloggo Torcido.

wb27_lg.jpgWine, Wine and More Wine from Domaine 547
This prize includes a Magnum of 2003 Pax Cellars Kobler Family Vineyard Syrah and a $50 gift certificate to The prize can be shipped to anywhere that FedEx legally delivers alcohol to, with the exception of New Hampshire. Domaine 547 is also willing to arrange for shipping to other states, on behalf of any bidder who wants to ship the wine via use of their own UPS account. Value: $150. Prize Code: WB27. Courtesy of Domaine 547.

Clos Pepe Pinot Noir “Horizontal” From Top ProducersWB28lg.jpg
Win four bottles of 2006 Pinot Noir from Clos Pepe Vineyards in the Sta. Rita Hills produced by premier wine labels: AP Vin, Loring Wine Company, Siduri and the Clos Pepe Estate label. Splayed over the gently rolling foot of the La Purisima Hills on the north side of Highway 246, this 28-acre vineyard planted to 24 acres of Pinot Noir and 4 acres of Chardonnay is one of the Central Coast’s premier vineyards. It produces consistent quality fruit and the wines produced by the various négociants share a commonality of character that distinguishes them from others in the area. These wines are structured and nicely layered with good acidity and a distinct, pleasant earthiness. This four bottle “horizontal” from some of the State’s best Pinot Noir producers is an exploration of the vineyard’s character. Value: approx $210. Prize Code: WB28. More info at

Magnum of wine, tour, and tasting at Tolosa Winery for Six PeopleWB29_lg.jpg
Join Tolosa winemaker Larry Brooks for a past, present and future tour of the Winery in San Luis Obispo and finish with a artisan wine and cheese pairing. A Magnum of our 10th Anniversary wine will also be given to the winner upon arrival.

PAST: Guests will learn about the origin of our name and the story behind our brand. They will also have the opportunity to taste past vintages from the Tolosa library collection.

PRESENT: After a brief talk about our vineyard and outside production area, guests will be toured through our tank and barrel rooms.

FUTURE: The tour finishes with a futures tasting from select French oak barrels. This intimate tasting will take place in our private barrel designed area with our finest wine selections.

Following the tour you and your guests will be guided through an artisan wine and cheese pairing with Tolosa’s wine and cheese educator & sommelier, John Shakley. As you relax in our beautiful private Heritage Room, John will pair five limited production wines with five artisan cheeses from around the world. Value: $400. Prize Code: WB29. Courtesy of Tolosa Winery.

EU18: My Italians Wine Tasting in Rome with Sommelière Hande Leimer of vinoroma

AND, last but not least, you might be interested in what prize Vinography is offering this year.

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If you’re interested in buying into the raffle, here’s what you need to do:

1. Choose a prize or prizes of your choice from above or from the master list of raffle prizes hosted at Chez Pim.

2. Go to the donation site at and make a donation.

3. Please specify which prize you’d like in the ‘Personal Message’ section in the donation form when confirming your donation. You must write-in how many tickets per prize, and please use the prize code. Example: