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When Irish Wines Are Smiling

It just had to happen.

In 2002, when I organized and started not only PS I Love You, but also started the Association of African American Vintners, I was thinking about starting an Irish American Vintners Association. It just made sense to me. Concannon Vineyard was/is a client of Diaz Communications. (Although I’m no longer the winery’s publicist, I still work with Concannon, as they’re the sponsor for the annual Petite Sirah Symposium.) I kept urging for this important group to be formed, most especially when St. Paddy’s day would come around. I came up with a “Beyond Green Beer” tag line, so people had other options with which to celebrate… But, we were – and continue to be –  just too busy, and we never got to it.

INCOMING EMAIL: When Irish Wines Are Smiling.

Yeah… Someone has finally figured it out!

When Irish Wines are Smiling is the inaugural tasting to honor those of Irish descent working in wine and food in California. There’s a long history of Irish involvement in the wine trade globally, dating back to the eighteenth century.  Concannon Vineyard launched in 1893, as the first Irish American wine making family, started by Irish immigrant James Concannon. Today, James Concannon’s grandson ~ Jim Concannon ~ and his great grandson John Concannon can be seen walking across their courtyard. Jim is the winery’s ambassador, and John is busy with national sales. He’s also this year’s president of PSILY.

Winegeese is the name given to emigrant Irish families and their descendants, like the Concannons, who ~ from the eighteenth century onward ~ have been involved in owning and operating wineries in their newly adopted countries. Today, their names and wine brands are highly recognized as quality products on the international wine market.

There are dozens of wineries in California and beyond that have a link in one form or other with the Emerald Isle. When Irish Wines are Smiling will highlight the contribution made by the Irish to modern Californian wines, by showcasing some incredible and hard to find wines.

This Irish Themed Wine & Food tasting is going to feature wines from Irish owned, named, and ancestry wineries, which will be served alongside freshly prepared traditional Irish dishes and Irish Cheese.

Rutherford Grange Hall, Rutherford, CA 94573

Sunday 14th March 2010 from 2-5pm

Tickets $25 in advance / $30 at the door

Advance tickets available at Brown Paper Tickets

(A portion of proceeds will benefit the Rutherford Grange)

Live Traditional Irish Music & Dancing


You can follow the event on Facebook for updates as they happen: When Irish Wines Are Smiling

Participating Wineries

Participating Food Vendors

Others to be confirmed.


Andrew Healy | 707 227 4273 | threerockwine@gmail.com | www.threerockwine.com

Becky Tyner | 707 254 5152 | becky@smalllotbigwines.com | www.smalllotbigwines.com

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6 Responses to “When Irish Wines Are Smiling”

  1. ConstanceC says:

    are there any wines from Ireland participating…?
    Any chance you can do a sister event in NYC? 🙂

  2. Jo says:

    They’re all from California, from the list.

    Isn’t there just a huge potential?

  3. Andrew Healy says:

    Constance. No wines from Ireland and having tried them in the past and again recently we need to stick to the stout and whiskey production. Our climate is just too marginal with too much rain and not enough warm, yet alone hot, weather. Some of the current bunch grow their grapes under plastic sheeting to increase the temps!!

    As for NY we’d love to but as this is our first event we have to make sure that it works for the wineries and the food vendors as they’re the ones who pour their wine / serve food at their expense.

    Maybe when we can prove that it works we’ll enlist Jo’s capable pair of hands to take in on the road. We’ll keep you posted.

    Thanks for your support and comments
    Andrew Healy

  4. Jo says:

    Well, that would be one fun road trip!

  5. […] When Irish Wines Are Smiling (wine-blog.org) […]

  6. Irish Rover says:

    I can vouch for the earlier comment, about Ireland just being too cold/wet for good wine production.

    I am originally from the North of Ireland – and June, July and August are the only months of real opportunity to see some decent weather. No guarantees tho – it can be a wet summer.

    But up near me, is Bushmills Whiskey factory! And across the Irish Sea, on a good clear summer day, I can see Scotland. They have sme great whiskies too!

    But alas, for wines in the green isle.

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