Author Archives: Gin

Harvest Basics with John Troiano – Recording, June 17, 2020 SHW Meeting

SHW’s June 17, 2020 John Troiano’s presentation can be found in both audio-only and video formats at the google drive location listed, below. Using your favorite web browser, navigate to:

Once there, click (or double-click) on either “audio_only.mp4” or “zoom_0.mp4”. You should see a player appear on your screen and shortly thereafter the audio or video program will begin. John’s presentation is one-hour, forty-two minutes in length. So open a bottle, sit back and be informed.  The video can be paused and continued by clicking in the middle of the screen. 

Please notify Robert Wharton ( should you encounter any issues with the quality of the recordings.

The corrected handout accompany the presentation can be found here

Posted in Meetings & Events | Leave a comment

New Group Buy Coordinator Appointed

Jim Garrett has taken on the duties of the Group Buy Coordinator for SHW. He will help to facilitate the acquisition of quality wine grapes for members and will assist members form groups interested in purchasing grapes that otherwise might not be available in small quantities. Among his duties will be tracking grape variety sources and keeping group members up to date on group buy details as harvest approaches.
In the near future, members will be receiving emails directly from Jim regarding grape preferences, grape availability, group makeup and other details. Please note: Most emails regarding Group Buys will not be sent from our MailChimp mail account, so watch for emails with the Subject lines prefaced with SHW and from Jim Garrett. The sending and reply email address will be  .
Posted in 2020 Grapes for Sale, Group Buys, Trade, In Search Of | Leave a comment

Topics and Hosts Wanted for Zoom Sessions

Starting in late spring, SHW has been presenting members with educational programs using Zoom for the Club’s monthly meetings and smaller sessions.

Future smaller sessions (virtual) may include: Ask The SHW Mentors; and Tips for Making Rosés and Whites.  What other wine making and home viticulture topics would you like to learn more about?  Please email your ideas to Donna Bettencourt at 

We are also looking for members to host the smaller sessions with their Zoom access (robust bandwidth and chat capabilities necessary).  Most small sessions are planned for a weekday evening starting around 7 pm.  If you can host, please contact Gin Yang at 



Posted in Meetings & Events | Leave a comment

Baking with Wine Yeast

Who doesn’t have leftover wine yeast from last year’s harvest?  Wondering if you can bake with the lounging beasties?

Andrea Mugnaini of Mugnaini Imports in Healdsburg has done some of the homework for you.  She baked bread, pizza and focaccia with three cultured yeasts designed for wine making – RC 212, BRL 97 and D 254 in Mugnaini’s dreamy wood-fired or gas pizza ovens.  With Mugnaini Imports permission, we’re sharing Andrea’s findings (edited):

“…I found that the primary species for all yeast used for wine, beer and breads is the same – Saccharomyces Cerevisiae. So, using the three wine yeasts I had on hand, I spent two months testing it for making pizza, focaccia, and breads. I found surprisingly positive and favorable results, and several unexpected benefits.   

First, I used the exact same proportions that I already use for all of my dough recipes. What I found was amazing. The action of all the wine yeasts I tried produced a slower and gentler rise, appetizing aromas and much greater longevity. My last batch of dough was baked at 12 days and remained well structured and not sour. It was lofty and aromatic and baked with perfect speckled char browning. Read the notes below on the different yeasts I experimented with!

RC 212 
This yeast produced a warm cream and rye aroma upon proofing and then a clean, fresh yeasty bread aroma after baking.

BRL 97 
This yeast produced a rye & sour cream aroma upon proofing and then delicious dough with sour cream undertones and a deeper yellow color.

D 254  This yeast produced a very fresh wheat aroma upon proofing and then a sweet, fruity, very mild yeast backdrop when finished. …”

So, there you have it!  Use last year’s stash in the oven and get fresh packs for your winery.

The information for this post was shared by former SHW members Grant and Yoka Koch who now reside in southern Oregon’s Rogue Valley.  They say the wines are exciting in the valley and offer to help SHWers with their wine tour visits in that area.

Posted in Food and Wine | Leave a comment

June 17, 2020 Meeting Handout – Correction

SHW’s June 17 guest speaker John Troiano ran us through fermentation, chemistry and more last Wednesday evening.  He’s made a correction to his previous handout on the formula for using yeast nutrient Fermaid K and should now read “… 140 g/28 g per fl oz…”. 

Shred the original handout and use this revised version:  I Just Stomped My Grapesrev2020 Corrected.  This document is also posted on SHW’s website under the Members Resources tab; choose Mentors and Speaker Resources on the drop down menu and scroll down to Speaker Resources.


Posted in Meetings & Events | Leave a comment

Best Way to Ship Cased Wine Across Country

SHW member John Lymath’s asking for a friend: what’s the best way to ship 20 cases of wine (refrigerated) across the continental USA?

Contact John at or 916 765-3451.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Grapes for Sale: Carignane, Mourvedre, Zinfandel – Oakley / Antioch

Grapes for Sale: Carignane, Mourvèdre, and Zinfandel.

120-year old vines are dry-farmed by 3rd generation Sandy Lane grower in Oakley / Antioch area. Grapes from these vineyards have been purchased by Ridge Wine, Ledson Winery, and Boony Doon Vineyard.

$0.75 lb. you pick; $1 lb. grower picks.

Contact directly: Dan Gonsalves at 925 695-5747 or

Posted in 2020 Grapes for Sale, Group Buys, Trade, In Search Of | Leave a comment

For Sale: Winemaking Equipment, Bottles

Winemaking equipment available:

– Basket press, 12” diameter, $75
– Crusher/destemmer, manual, $75
– Carboys, dusty but in good shape,  3 for $20
– Various bottles, $25 take all

See photos below.

Call Linda, 714 313-8608.  Equipment is located in the town of
Sutter, CA (95982).

Posted in 2020 Winemaking Items for Sale/Wanted/Trade/Rent/Free | Leave a comment

Group Buy: Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Tempranillo – Davis

Group Buy: Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Tempranillo

Great Bear Vineyards, Davis

Group crush/destem days for Sacramento Home Winemakers
We pick.  $1/lb picked and destemmed
No quantity too small – we have some customer buying their first 100 pounds and we are happy to help (that’s where we started with SHW support!).
Quantity discounts for 2 tons, 5 tons, 10 tons

Sustainable local family vineyard. Deficit irrigated with target of 4-5 tons per acre. Hand nurtured and hand harvested.
Award winning wines e.g. 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon – Gold San Francisco Chronicle, Wine Enthusiast awards Rose of Tempranillo, Rose of Cabernet, Roussanne

Cabernet Sauvignon pick mid-September onwards for 24.5 BRIX.
Our Cabernet Sauvignon also makes a wonderful Rosé when picked at 21 BRIX in mid-August (you can buy the Rosé at Nugget and the Davis Coop, and it was reviewed at 89 points by the Wine Enthusiast).

You are welcome to pick your own grapes and take home full clusters, if you prefer.

Contact Marcus or Jenny: 530 574 1516.

Posted in 2020 Grapes for Sale, Group Buys, Trade, In Search Of | Leave a comment

Grapes for Sale: Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Vermentino – Winters

Grapes for Sale – vineyard is near Winters in Yolo County:
Sangiovese, 900 lb
Cabernet Sauvignon, 450 lb
Vermentino, 900 lb
(2018 Sangiovese produced a silver medal winner for him at the 2020 Lodi Bottle Shock competition.)

U-pick, no crusher or press available.
Price: $0.60/lb
Contact: Doug Mackenzie at 530 383-8058 and


Posted in 2020 Grapes for Sale, Group Buys, Trade, In Search Of | Leave a comment