The Terroir of Senses, just add a little music… and off we go, Scoring the Scores.

Who are part of the “We” process?


I have to thank Delfim Costa of Enoforum Wines for taking me a few steps beyond what everyone in the US thinks and talks about, when it comes to terroir. Delfim flew me to Portugal for a 10 day extravaganza, so I would not only get the usual (soil, weather, meso and microclimate, vineyards, locations, and varieties), but he also wanted me to rethink my concept of terroir, by presenting a tipping point from which there was no escape. Leave it to a European, who has a complete respect for his country’s history and historical position within the wine world, to recenter me and make me think about art, food and wine, the air I breathe, the sounds around the experience, the totality of it all to reset my imagination button, and then to take it up a notch.

Opportunities abound, with my social media networking, so next…

Alacia Van sent her newly released Beautiful Thought CD to me. She sent it because she felt a connection between us through Twittering, as our friendship evolved. It was a purely emotional gesture, and had nothing to do with promotion in any way. With the cut PS I Love You on her CD, she knew I’d just “get it,” and have something lovely to enjoy.

I’m a natural born promoter, however, so my wheels began to turn.

Also, little did she know that I had lived within the music industry for 25 years… My roots ran deep with that genre for a very long time. When my life is all said and done, being completely surrounded by the world of music may have been as much as a third of my life. I was in it still longer than my current connections to the wine business. I also grew up with a music room in my house (baby grand, stereo listening room, etc.). I studied dance and piano (I play the piano badly, but I can still dance like crazy). Music is in my DNA; so, although I’m no longer in that professional world, my passion is still alive and well.

As soon as I received Alacia’s CD, my mind went into a serious promotional mode.

What if… I put the word out to the members of PS I Love You that I was going to be tasting PS with jazz music, and then writing about it? The following responded:


  1. 2007 Artezin, Mendocino County
  2. 2005 Clayhouse Estate, Paso Robles
  3. 2007 Concannon, Conservancy, Livermore Valley
  4. 2006 EOS Estate, Paso Robles
  5. 2005 Langtry, Guenoc Valley, Serpentine Meadow
  6. 2005 Lava Cap, Granite Hill, El Dorado, Reserve
  7. 2007 Line 39, Lake County
  8. 2004 Mettler Family Vineyards, Lodi
  9. 2007 Miro Petite Sirah, Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County
  10. 2005 True Grit from Parducci, Mendocino County
  11. 2006 Pedroncelli Dry Creek Valley, Family Vineyards
  12. 2007 Silkwood, Stanislaus County
  13. 2006 Twisted Oak, Calaveras County
  14. 2005 Ursa, Sierra Foothills
  15. 2006 Vina Robles, Paso Robles

Next came a bright idea from Mary Lawler, the brand manager for Artezin. The parent company for this wine brand is The Hess Collection.

Mary suggested that if I needed a place to taste the wines, her wine companies would be happy to host me. I’ve been to Hess/Artezin to taste in the past, and this venue is gorgeously placed high on Mount Veeder… a place too good not to share. So I thought, “I should invite other people who might enjoy this experience, too.” (Hence, the list above.)


Hess Collection also has an in-house chef, because they completely understand the connection between food and wine for an overall tasting experience; and Mary then offered appetizers, followed by lunch.

This was truly growing for the solid group above who are also participating.

Winemaker Randall Johnson (winemaker for Artezin wines) will be joining us via Skype. He’s currently harvesting south of the Equator, but we want to have him do a “pop-in” as we all enjoy his wine company’s hospitality.

If we’re to do this, thought I, then Pure Luxury Transportation limousines should be used for the day, so none of us have to worry about driving after this great adventure…. Checking off all details…

The plan (It’s an amazing coincidence that there are 15 wines and 15 cuts on this CD):

  • Conduct a pure tasting of the Petite Sirah without any distractions from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
    • Each person takes his/her own notes about the PSs’ flavors.
  • Next, introduce the music from 12:00 – 12:30 p.m. Appetizers will be served.
    • Having used descriptive adjectives about the body of the wines, revisit those adjectives (like: brooding, sultry, lively, vivacious, etc.) and individually ascribe the notes to one of the cuts on the CD.
    • Finish our tasting while listening to the music with appetizers that Artezin/Hess’ chef would like for us to enjoy.
    • We also will have the opportunity to taste and meander in their world-class art gallery… More input for our senses.
    • Then, finally through a panel discussion, the wine most closely aligned in adjectives to the sounds of Alacia Van’s cuts on her CD (consensus) will be the paired with the music and foods.
  • Lunch will follow, gratis Hess Collection | Artezin Wines

The results for Scoring the Scores will appear in a subsequent blog posting, after our day. The following are the songs that we’ll be listening to.

  1. I Feel So Smoochie
  2. He’s Funny That Way
  3. Our Love is Here to Stay
  4. In a Sentimental Mood
  5. You Go to My Head
  6. The Music That Makes Me Dance
  7. P.S. I Love You
  8. My Man
  9. Fever
  10. The Very Thought of You
  11. Me, Myself, and I
  12. Heart and Soul
  13. I Wish You Love
  14. The Nearness of You
  15. La Vie En Rose

This has taken a lot of planning, and should be an amazing day.

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