“If I work 40 years, I only have 40 chances to make something great,” says winemaker, Shawna Miller on her drive up to Luna’s contracted Sangiovese Vineyard on Atlas Peak. Harvest 2017 is quickly approaching and Shawna was meeting with the vineyard proprietor and manger to inspect the progress of the grapes. On the way up the windy road, nothing was off the table for discussion and we discovered some amazing things about our humble yet extremely talented winemaker.
Shawna first discovered her passion for winemaking on a vacation to Napa Valley with her husband, who was her boyfriend at the time. Both with a background in biology, forestry to be more specific, loved nature and the cyclical patterns of life. Visiting from Florida, the two immediately fell in love with the wine region of Napa Valley. Shawna was asked if she would be interested in working a harvest, and the rest is history.
About thirteen vintages later, 6 of which were spent at Luna Vineyards, Shawna has learned a thing or two along the way. Her winemaking style has evolved, becoming more refined and boutique-driven. She takes pride in her “old world meets new” winemaking approach, personally gravitating to big, bold reds with a feminine touch. Shawna strives to let the true expression of each of her vineyards shine through, intervening in the cellar as little as possible.
But, if you ask our winemaker to pick her favorite wine in the Luna collection she cannot decide, making a case that “picking your favorite wine is like picking your favorite day in the year – impossible.”
As we walked through the hot and sunny Piccolo Vineyard on Atlas Peak, studying the the veraison and size of our Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon clusters, Shawna was in disbelief that another harvest season was upon us again. While harvest is this winemaker’s favorite time of the year, the season also requires careful planning and preparation. But in the end, nature takes the course it was meant to take and we can only go with the flow. As Shawna, a mother of two, cleverly relates, “Harvest is like having a baby. You can prepare all you want but ultimately the grapes decide when they’re ready and all you can do is hope you are too.”
Thanks, Shawna for all your hard work year-round to produce Luna’s award-winning wines. Good luck with Harvest 2017!
Join us as we toast the harvest season with an al fresco festival at the Luna Estate. Enjoy the best of Northern California with live music, seasonal dishes, and of course, fabulous Luna wine!
Festivities include music by solo guitarist, Justin Brown, custom-made flower crowns, lawn games, and raffles!
Meet our estate chef, Mercedes Ross, as she passes around Fall favorites beautifully paired with our new wine releases, 2016 Wente Chardonnay and 2015 Sangiovese Classico.
Each guest receives a keepsake Luna Vineyards wine glass to commemorate the day.
For tickets and additional event information, please visit our website: www.LunaVineyards.com/Events
It has been a very busy and fast-moving growing season for us at Luna Vineyards. The generous rains the Valley experienced throughout the winter and early spring of 2017 have been a blessing in disguise, officially ending a five-year drought across most of the state.
Although above-average rainfall is certainly a lot to absorb, the vines are growing at an unbelievable pace at about an inch a day. The stored water in the vineyard soil has already proven useful, especially when Napa experienced a heat wave of temperatures 100+ degrees a couple weeks back.
Canopies are growing lush and hedge-like, protecting our delicate berries from the mid-day sun. Most berry clusters are well into the growing season, and some have even begun to turn. In viticulture, the term used to describe the changing color of the grapes is, Veraison. Once grapes hit this stage, it represents their transition from growth to ripening and can last between 6 and 8 weeks.
Veraison characterizes the initial stages of color development and represents the onset of berry ripening
As preparations are being made behind the scenes for our annual Harvest Party, we’re finding it harder to believe just how quickly this season has come and almost gone. Fingers crossed for a continued great season as we head into the final months of what’s turning out to be a phenomenal vintage.
Luna Vineyards was thrilled to be a part of Napa Valley’s inaugural Rosé Fest which took place at Sterling Vineyards last Saturday, June 24. The event featured 30 wineries throughout Napa Valley to highlight some of the regions’ diverse rosé wine offerings. What Rosé Fest visitors soon learned – Napa wines are much more than just Cabernet.
Guests were brought to the hillside event area via Sterling’s aerial tram, allowing for amazing views of the valley. Local restaurants and musicians were also present, making the whole atmosphere fun and relaxing. Luna’s Father/Daughter team poured two of our rosé wines, both made from 100% Sangiovese…the perfect wines to end a week of heat.
The best part about the whole event? All proceeds from the day benefitted the Susan G. Komen Foundation to provide breast cancer education, research funding, and patient support.
We had a fabulous time meeting all of you and can’t wait for next year!
Luna Vineyards has just returned from a two-week overseas adventure in Bordeaux, France! The trip was inspired by the world’s leading wine and spirits event – Vinexpo. We exhibited five of our wines on four fun and exhilarating days, receiving notes of high praise from our visitors. Debuting our wines in the international market was rewarding and will soon pay off – stand by in North America, Europe, and Asia!
Luckily, our trip was not all business and the Luna team was able to sneak away for some sightseeing in stunning Bordeaux and its surrounding countryside.
Some say, “Cab is King” in Napa Valley but that’s because they haven’t tried our 2015 Estate Pinot Grigio. The critics most certainly agree…
91 Points, Wine Enthusiast Magazine
Gold, 10th Annual American Fine Wine Invitational
Gold, Best of Class, 2016 Sunset International Wine Competition
Best of Class, 2017 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition
With a little risk, a bit of grit, and a lot of heart, Luna’s ancestors planted Pinot Grigio grapes along the Silverado Trail twenty years ago. Our vineyard is located in the southern end of Napa Valley known for providing excellent growing conditions for white wines. Its proximity to the San Francisco Bay provides morning fog and cooling afternoon breezes, both beneficial to the retention of Pinot Grigio’s delicate fruit and acidity and for our critic’s palates.
Use promo code PGSHIP now until Friday, June 30 to receive complimentary shipping when purchasing 3 bottles or more!
Thank you to all of our Wine Club members who joined Luna Vineyards this past Saturday, June 10 for a fun event! Our staff was so excited to see all of you and we hope you had a great time.
Enjoy our photo gallery from the party and please share any photos of your own on social media and tag @luna.vineyards for a chance to be featured. Stay tuned for more events this summer – Cheers!
Beach days, barbecues, and outdoor picnics are here again! In celebration of the coming holiday weekend, our fabulous Chef Mercedes Ross is sharing her recipe for these deliciously light and festive olive oil cakes.
Staying true to her farm-to-table style, Chef Mercedes uses extra virgin olive oil from the Napa Valley Olive Oil Co., fresh lemons from the grounds at Luna Vineyards, and berries from a local family owned fruit stand. She serves them alongside home-made Marscapone whip, taking these cakes to the next level.
Looking to try, but not much of a baker? The cakes are featured on our Spring Al Fresco Lunch menu. For details and reservations visit our website: LunaVineyards.com/visit
Luna Vineyards is happy to be partnering with Chef Mercedes Ross to elevate our wine and food pairing experiences at the winery this summer. Starting Saturday, June 3, we will be welcoming guests for a VIP experience at our estate, led by this amazing California born and bred chef.
Chef Mercedes Ross and her company, Lady and the Vine, specialize in Italian inspired cuisine based on the “best at the moment” ingredients. This San Diego native received her culinary training in Chicago, where she discovered her talent for cooking and turned her passion into a career.
All of the ingredients used in Mercedes’ cooking is seasonal and locally sourced, using produce from her very own garden in Napa and figs and lemons of the sort from Luna’s lush estate. Her love for Italian cooking is evident in each forkful of her Bucatini Pomodora with house-made ricotta, making the perfect pairing for Luna’s Italian style wines.
Experience her farm-to-table approach while seated at a five-course paired lunch overlooking our estate vineyards on Saturdays this summer. Learn more by visiting our website: www.LunaVineyards.com/Visit
Stay tuned for Lady and the Vine‘s luxurious picnic experiences coming soon: www.LadyandtheVine.com