Acorn Winery  & Alegría Vineyard

When Acorn Winery was just a twinkle in Bill Nachbaur‘s eye, I was there to see the glow. At that time, Bill and Betsy Nachbaur only owned Alegría Vineyards, and Bill was getting itchy to see what his grapes would taste like, if he were involved in the winemaking process. Bill and I were both in a wine sales and marketing class at Santa Rosa Junior College. SRJC’s courses are taught by local professionals representing their vocations. In the case of the wine sales and marketing degree program that I took, all of the classes were taught by local wine pros, including the one that Bill and I attended.

I was there to learn about marketing wine. I was in wine sales at the time. And Bill was ready to move to the next step of owning a vineyard. Everything he learned was being applied to creating his brand; everything I learned helped me with Belvedere wine sales. (I used to sell wine in Northern CA, Northern NV, Oregon, Washington, Minnesota, Iowa, and Puerto Rico. As I told everyone at V. Suarez in Puerto Rico, “Mi esposo es en puertorriqueño.” I consequently sold a lot of wine on the island.)

From Classroom…

Meanwhile, Bill and Betsy were also planning for their future success. Bill and I were on the same team, for a wine company presentation. We were all given the name of a winery and we had to completely create the legend, a press kit, and all the marketing materials. Bill took what we worked on together as a group and applied it to his new wine company name of Acorn Winery.

Neither one of us realized that we were living only a few miles from each other at the time, and it took years after before I realized where he was and what he had accomplished. Now, as neighbors and former classmates, I’m willing to help when they need us… Acorn Winery and Diaz Communication. They aren’t clients, they’re friends. We just help each other, just as we did in class. It’s a friendly,  personal thing…

to 25 Years Later…

And so, when they wanted advice on how to celebrate their twenty-fifth vintage, Jose and I sat with them at their winery; and then, again, over dinner to explore their options. (This image is of son Peter, enjoying the event with parents Betsy and Bill.)

When we got their invitation, we were so ready… Let me just say, they were so successful at getting out the word, that Jose and I circled the entire property and had to go back onto Old Redwood Highway, to circle back again and see if someone had pulled out. We found one spot, but not before I had told Jose in preparation for not finding a parking spot, “Okay, if there’s no spot, we’ll go back again, I’ll jump out and visit.  You go back around, and when you return, you get out and I’ll go around the property again. We can do this until a spot becomes open. It wasn’t that they had no parking available; it was because they’ve got a tremendous fan base and they came out in droves.

On Sunday, October 19, from noon to 4:00 .p.m, we were greeted by staff, and then celebrated Acorn Winery’s twenty fifth harvest, from their Alegría Vineyards. The wine staff not only poured the current and library ACORN wines, but they also poured wines made by other wineries from the Alegría Vineyard grapes (both images below are representative).

All of these wines were accompanied by nibbles from ZIN Restaurant and Wine Bar… a delicious day, as well as being gorgeous Sonoma County weather.

It’s delightful to have watched, for over two decades, a wine inspiration become a winery destination.

The following are images from the celebration