A Winery Deserving of a Book
We PR folks are known for cooking up all sorts of wild things for our clients. Some ideas are better than others…to be sure. One idea that I’ve occasionally suggested to clients is the simple act of publishing a book about the winery’s history.
There are very few California wineries out there that could pull this off and have genuinely good reason for doing such a thing. So, this kind of a suggestion is rarely offered up.
Recently I received a book from a winery who most certainly has great justification for publishing a book on their history and their influence:
The book is entitled "Concannon: The First One Hundred and Twenty-Five Years". It is written by Jim Concannon and Tim Patterson with photographs by Andy Katz.
My real introduction to Concannon came in the early 1990s when I was doing work with Foppiano Vineyards. In particular, I was working on an explanation for them of just exactly what "Petite Sirah" was…as variety. Petite was the Foppiano’s specialty, and still is. Only a few other wineries in the world
had as much experience with the grape called Petite Sirah. One of those wineries was Concannon.
An entire chapter in the "Concannon" book is devoted to Petite Sirah. Concannon was the first American winery to label a wine "Petite Sirah".
The Concannon’s themselves have been at it making wine since 1883 in the Livermore Valley. Their story is more than one of longevity. This family created the Cabernet Sauvignon Clones 7 & 8, work houses of the industry.
The book, by the way, is beautiful. Stunning really. Andy Katz is a wonderful photographer and it shows in this work. The oversized book truly shows off his seasoned eye. The writing has a reverential tone to it that is appropriate. The Concannon’s take their history seriously while recognizing that the industry has changed and they’ve had to change with it.
The "old time" California wineries don’t get nearly as much attention as they should. Much of what is covered today in the wine media and much of what is interesting to wine drinkers is what’s new. Concannon is one of those wineries that deserves much more attention.
If you are interested learning more about Concannon, my suggestion is buy one of their Petite Sirahs. Their two best Petites are sold out at their web site. However, they are selling a 1999 Reserve Petite for $29.00. Though I’ve not tasted it, my bet is you could lay it down for another 10 years before it peaks.
The first serious wines I tried when I got interested in knowing more about wine were Concannon Petite Sirahs from the late 1970s. And they’re still turning out great ones (though I liked those old-fashiuoned labels better).