VIDEO: TOM & SANDY MOLLER OF SATORI CELLARS

Meet Tom and Sandy Moller of Satori Cellars of Santa Clara Wineries. Tom is a techie-turned-winemaker, while Sandy is a yoga teacher and winemaker.

The Mollers started Satori Cellars over 10 years ago and have gone on to win awards for their wines. We spoke to them to find out how they got started with the winery and how they choose fun and unusual names for their wines.

The tasting room of Satori Cellars are open only on weekends. Please check their website for the timings.

Address2100 Buena Vista Ave, Gilroy, CA 95020

You can subscribe to our podcast and  YouTube channel, where every week we feature new interviews.

Advertisements

VIDEO: GINO FORTINO OF FORTINO WINERY

Gino Fortino of Fortino Winery in Gilroy talks about Charbono wine, which is made out of an Italian grape varietal. There are only 80 acres of the Italian grape varietal Charbono grown in California and Fortino’s grows some of them. “Cult wine,” is often a phrase used when talking about Charbono.

Fortino Winery was founded in 1970 in Gilroy by Gino’s parents – Marie and Ernest Fortino. The winery is part of Santa Clara wineries, one of the oldes wine growing regions in California.

Address: Fortino Winery, 4525 Hecker Pass Hwy, Gilroy, CA 95020

Tasting Room is open from  10:00am to 5:00pm Tuesday through Saturday and on Sundays it is open from 11.00 am to 5.00 pm.

 

SEPTEMBER IS CALIFORNIA WINE MONTH

Kirigin Cellars

 

We are celebrating California’s wine month with a series of audio, video and blog posts. In the San Francisco Bay area we are surrounded by wineries and vineyards from Sonoma, Napa, Livermore to the wineries of Santa Clara county.

Santa Clara Valley is home to the oldest wine growing region in California. Tucked away in Silicon Valley’s backyard are a cluster of wineries that make a variety of red and white wines. And some like Fortino Winery also make fruit-based wines in addition to red and white wines. Once known as vinegar alley and known for its jug wines, the wineries now produce award-winning wines.

Earlier this week I went on a tour of 3 wineries in Gilroy: Satori Cellars Winery, Kirigin Cellars and Fortino Winery. While I have visited wineries in this region I have never visited any of them during their harvest season. The purpose of this trip was to fulfill my curiosity of what it takes to harvest and make wine. Tha making wine is a lot of hard work is a mild understatement.

September is the busiest month for wineries for this marks the starts of the harvest season. What I discovered is that some wineries were busy picking their grapes and crushing them, while others were getting ready to pick them.

Tom Moller, Satori Cellars, Santa Clara Wineries

 

“When you pick the grapes is a very important decision,” points out Tom Moller of Satori Cellars Winery in Gilroy. Essentially when you pick the grapes determines how your wine will turn out at the end. The sugar level in the grapes will determine when they get picked and crushed.

 

Santa Clara Wineries

 

At Kirigin Cellars I watched as the grapes were dumped into a huge steel crusher to extract the grape juice for making the wine. “They have been picking grapes since 6 am,” points out Dhruv Khanna, owner of Kirigin Cellars that is celebrating its centennial year. They picked about 7 tonnes of grapes in the morning and by 1 pm they had them all crushed says Khanna as we stood by the wine crusher with bees buzzing around us. Surprisingly nobody seemed to pay any attention to the buzzing bees.

 

Fortino Winery

 

Fortinos of Fortino Winery

 

My final destination was Fortino Winery where I met Gino Fortino and his father Ernesto Fortino. The winery was established in 1970 by Fortino senior, who focussed on making wines from varietals. Fortino Winery is one of the few wineries that grows Charbono, a rare Italian varietal. ” We have 3 acres of Carbon out of the 80 acres in California,’ points out Fortino. Besides their estate grown red and white wines Fortino Winery also make a variety of fruit-based wines.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

December Special: Food and Wine in Silicon Valley and Bangalore

December is the season to celebrate and we are doing just that with a series of interviews on food and wine in Silicon Valley and Bangalore. We are talking California wines and Chinese food in India. Now, that is a combination to think about.

Santa Clara county is home to many of Silicon Valley hi-tech companies. The area is also home to some of the oldest wine growing regions in California. Santa Clara Wineries are a hidden gem of this region and we spoke to 2 vineyards from the regions: Solis Winery and Sycamore Creek WineryBoth the wineries are located a few miles south of San Jose.

 

Solis WInery at Gilroy

Solis Winery, Santa Clara WInery

 

And from Silicon Valley wineries we zip across the Pacific Ocean to Bangalore, often known as “Silicon Valley of India,” to find out about the second most popular cuisine in the city. And what is the second most popular cuisine, whose influence has seeped into the local, traditional restaurants? Chinese. Yes, Chinese food is the second most popular cuisine in Bangalore. There is the Indian-Chinese cuisine and then there is the authentic Chinese cuisine. Chinese restaurants have been part of Bangalore from the 1960s. In the last 15  years Chinese restaurants have mushroomed all over the city, and Gobi Manchurian, an Indian-Chinese dish is now part of traditional restaurants that serve idli, dosa, vada and sambar.

What about authentic Chinese cuisine in Banglaore? For that we turned to Chef Tong Willaam of Memories of China at Taj Vivanta on MG Road in Bangalore. Chef William came from Hong Kong to India in the 1980s and has had a long association with the Taj Group of Hotels. We sat down to find out about his culinary journey into India, and also got a tour of his kitchen at  Memories of China. And after all that talking and touring we sat down to have an authentic Chinese meal courtesy of Chef Tong William.

So, stay tuned for our video interviews on wines and Chinese food.

 

Chef Tong William at Memories of China in Bangalore

Chef Tong William of Memories of China