Wine Bloggers Conference 2016 will be in Lodi
“The last time I saw Lodi, the grapes were on the ground, and we went round and round and round, and ….”
Don Sherwood, at one time the most popular disc jockey in San Francisco, would sing this jingle often. It was a bit of poking fun at Lodi. Lodi still has an “out in the sticks” reputation. It is located in California’s Great Central Valley, at the northern end. It gets hot in Lodi and the land is flat and stretches far and wide. There are no spectacular mountains with long stretches of beautiful hillside vineyards.
When the announcement was made about next year’s onference, apparently most of the wine bloggers had never heard of Lodi. I could see it in their faces. Having the Wine Bloggers 2016 in Lodi will be huge for Lodi. It could make or break Lodi. 250 to 300 wine bloggers will attend this conference and these bloggers are social media titans. Their blog articles, Tweets, Instagrams, and Pinterest posts will reach thousands worldwide. That is not an exaggeration.
Great things about Lodi Wine Country
There are some great things about Lodi wine country. Lodi has long been known for its Zinfandel. Lodi has some of oldest Zinfandel vines found anywhere. Lodi Zinfandels are big and robust and have a huge following. Many of the vineyard owners have a long family history of farming in Lodi. Many Lodi grapes are sold to other wineries including wineries in the Napa Valley. Many vineyards in Lodi practice sustainable farming. The Lodi Appellation is vast and includes parts of Sacramento County and San Joaquin County. There are seven sub appellations within the Lodi appellation. About 70 grape varieties are grown in Lodi including Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Yes, it is hot in Lodi, but the Delta is nearby and an evening Delta breeze dramatically cools the vineyards. There is also something new in Lodi wines, Spanish varieties. This is all happening because of Bokisch Vineyards. Liz & Markus Bokisch moved here from Spain and planted Spanish grapes. The resulting wines are terrific, and this has had a domino effect on Lodi. Now there are other wineries following Bokisch, and they are producing Spanish varietal wines. We like the downtown area of Lodi. It is very fun with many cool little “Mom and Pop” shops. The Wine & Roses Hotel is the classiest lodging in Lodi and is the venue for many Lodi wine events.
I spoke with winemaker Paul Scotto, winemaker at Scotto Family Cellars, centered in Lodi. Paul is excited that the Wine Bloggers have chosen Lodi for the 2016 conference. He is confident the Lodi wineries will provide an exciting wine experience for wine bloggers. The conference will take place from August 11 to 14, 2016. More information on the conference and registration can be found on the Wine Bloggers Website.