Preferred Palates Newsletter

Welcome Preferred Palates Members. We hope you enjoy learning more about the Wine Club shipment wines in your Notes.


Current Issue: June 2022

2019 Rutherford Hillside Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

"The wine in this month’s shipment is especially significant, the 25th vintage of our Rutherford Hillside Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. When we first made this wine in 1994, Single Vineyard Cabernets were somewhat rare. It was also unusual to harvest and ferment small blocks of a vineyard separately, but that’s exactly what we did that year. We’d noticed that one of blocks up behind my house was always low yielding, so rather than combine the grapes with fruit from other blocks, we fermented and aged the wine on its own. What a revelation..."

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April 2022

2019 Wild Boar Cabernet Sauvignon

"I have a new love in my life. His name is Willy, and he’s a 16-week-old short legged Jack Russell terrier. Now you have to understand that I never intended to get a new dog, much less a puppy. My wife, Carrie, and I were driving to Arizona last November and stopped in Palm Desert. As we checked into our hotel we saw an older gentleman with a very handsome Jack Russell and got to talking. I asked where he got the dog, and he said Blythe, near the California/Arizona border. Well, we just happened to be going through Blythe and we stopped to see the breeder. The rest, as they say, is history. We picked up Willy – who we named after our tiki restaurant, Wilfred’s Lounge..."

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February 2022

2019 Flora's Legacy Cabernet Sauvignon & 2019 Trilogy

"This Preferred Palates shipment represents the debut of our 2019 Cabernet Sauvignons, a special vintage for the Flora Springs family. In addition to being a spectacular growing year in Napa Valley, 2019 represents the passing of the torch from our longtime winemaker Paul Steinauer to his assistant – and our current winemaker - Enrico Bertoz. Paul began working for Flora Springs in 1990 and was named winemaker in 2008, overseeing a 20-year string of growing seasons and harvests before his retirement in 2019. Enrico joined us in 2008, working side by side with Paul for 12 years before assuming the role of winemaker...."

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December 2021

2018 Celebrating Our 40th Harvest Cabernet Sauvignon

"First off, I want to thank the wonderful club members who took time to wish me a happy birthday this year. Your greetings really make an old guy like me feel special! Carrie and I got to spend a few days in Hawaii this fall, the first time we’ve been off the mainland for nearly two years. We went to Oahu, where my mother, Flora Komes, was born and grew up. I love taking in the sites that surrounded her as a child. I’m not exactly sure how she tore herself away from such an amazing locale, but I’m glad she did or I wouldn’t be here! The trip made me even more excited for the opening of our family’s new restaurant and tiki bar in Napa, Wilfred’s Lounge..."

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October 2021

2018 Holy Smoke Cabernet Sauvignon

"When we started Flora Springs in 1978, Napa Valley was a very different place. There were only a handful of vintners here at the time, and we all knew each other. And since growing grapes and making wine was still a relatively unknown endeavor, we relied on each other for information, advice, even equipment. There was more camaraderie than competition. Today, while there's still camaraderie among Napa Valley winemakers, the industry is not as close knit as it once was. I suppose that's inevitable and could be said about many maturing industries. Looking back, I’m thankful we started Flora Springs when we did..."

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August 2021

2018 Out of Sight Cabernet Sauvignon

"With restaurants opening up again, I've been thinking a lot about the role of the sommelier. I think it's a job I would have loved, tasting and learning about wines from around the world and helping customers find just the right match for their meal. But in my day, there just weren’t that many sommeliers around; only five-star restaurants and hotels had them. Today they're much more prevalent, and I really enjoy picking their brains when I'm dining out..."

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June 2021

2018 Rutherford Hillside Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

"When I built our Tasting Room on Highway 29, just south of St. Helena, I was inspired by the famous Catalan architect, Antoni Gaudi. Carrie and I had recently been to Barcelona and seen some of Gaudi’s most famous works. I’d heard the well-known quote attributed to him: "There are no straight lines or sharp corners in nature. Therefore, buildings must have no straight lines or sharp corners." With that as my cue, I designed our Tasting Room, a building that echoes the undulating hills to the west and the wine caves burrowed into them. I still love the feeling of entering that building, cool, cozy and cave-like at first until you walk out onto the sun-washed open-air patio with its spectacular views and modern aesthetic..."

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April 2021

2018 Wild Boar Cabernet Sauvignon

"I’ve always thought that living life to the fullest means that sometimes, you take a leap of faith. Many years back I was driving around and saw a used Porsche for sale. I’ve always loved those cars, so I stopped and had a look. It was in good shape, seven years old but with only 7,000 miles on it. The price tag was a little high for my budget then, but I decided to give it a test drive. The feeling I had when I started up the engine is almost indescribable. The adrenaline just flowed. Needless to say, that car came home with me that day. I think wine is similar..."

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February 2021

2018 Flora's Legacy Cabernet Sauvignon & 2018 Trilogy

"I’ve been thinking a lot lately about relationships. The personal relationships that sustain us in our daily lives, but also the professional ones that nurture our careers. Throughout my time in the wine industry, I’ve gotten to know wine shop owners, restaurateurs, country club managers and hoteliers. Many of these people introduced me to others in the industry, and this network was at the foundation, I believe, of our success. In the last several years it is our relationship with club members like you that sustains me...."

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