Women in Wine
Since March is Women’s History Month, I thought it only appropriate to celebrate women in the wine business. I have been blessed to know several strong women that have changed the tapestry of this male dominated industry. From the distributor rep to the CEO, from the cellar rat to the head of winemaking, these lovely ladies have paved the way with a mighty harvesting hook and a feathered pen. They may have been alone moving one stone at a time or had their sisters beside them, it could have been the will to persevere or the need to do what was right for future generations. Whatever the motivation, they, are why I am proud to be a Woman in Wine.
Three Girls Chardonnay, Lodi 2018 ~ Lisa, Shelly & Raquel Maggio
Angelo and Louisa Maggio arrived in Lodi, Ca in 1906. They grew grapes with their sons and sold to several winemakers all over the country. They had great success as multigenerational farmers, but it was not until grandson Rudy Maggio came on board with big dreams, did they realize their potential as winemakers. In 2002 the family built a state-of-the-art winery and began producing wine under the Oak Ridge label.
Rudy’s three daughters Lisa, Shelly and Raquel now own and operate Oak Ridge’s 2500 acre estate. They started to produce Three Girls Wine to honor women in wine. The sisters work together to inspire other female winemakers in the region. “The wine industry has always been very male dominated, and certainly when we first began this operation, it wasn’t commonplace to see female winemakers” Raquel says. “Luckily the landscape is changing, and evolving – we see more women in the wine industry than even before”
This lush patio sipper begs you to call your girlfriends, put on some shades and soak in the vitamin D.
Pair it with your quarantine besties, a chunk of brie and some hot goss!
Founders – Angelo and Louisa Maggio Winemaker – Maggio Sisters
Retail - $15
Niner Wine Estates Pinot Noir, Edna Valley 2019 ~ Molly Bohlman
Richard Niner fell in love with Paso Robles in 1990. By 2001 he and his family built a winery and were farming their estate vineyards in Paso Robles and Edna Valley. The winery is LEED Certified (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and the vineyards are SIP Certified (Sustainability In Practice). Much care goes into every step of the winemaking process and it shows up in the glass.
Winemaker Molly Bohlman oversees the Burgundian varietal program at Niner. While studying abroad Molly fell in love with wine while in France. She returned to the states, changed her major and received her degree in Fruit Science and Viticulture at Cal Poly. She then worked in grapevine sales, vineyard management and enology. She came to Niner Wine Estates in 2014 after working her tail off for 20 years to round out her resume. Molly has an affinity for cool weather varietals, and we think she nailed this Pinot.
Pair this balanced beauty with anything from Easter Ham to Spring Lamb!
Founders – Richard Niner Winemaker – Molly Bohlman
Retail - $32
Sonya’s Easter Leg of Lamb
6 garlic cloves peeled 4 large sprigs fresh rosemary, stems removed
1 tsp course salt (sea or kosher) ½ tsp black pepper
2 tbsp (heaping) grain mustard ½ cup olive oil
Place all ingredients in food processor and pulse until creamy but you can still see small chunks of
garlic and rosemary.
1 boneless leg of lamb (typically 6 to 8 lb) twine
Preheat oven to 375, trim leg (silver skin and extra fat – not all the fat), lay leg flat out and cover with 2/3rds rub, roll and wrap with twine, cover outer side with the rest of the rub. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Place on baking sheet then place in oven for 1 hour and 20 minutes. Great for cooking on covered outdoor grills as well. Internal temperature should read 135 for med-rare, Let sit 10 mins before slicing.
One Stone Cabernet Sauvignon, Paso Robles 2017 ~ Amanda Wittstrom-Higgins
It is with absolute pleasure that I introduce you to ONE STONE! This wine is a tribute to women who move mountains one stone at a time. We all know them, they are our grandmothers, moms, teachers, neighbors, or perhaps someone we will never meet or get to thank, but we can appreciate the fruits of their labor.
One Stone creator Amanda Wittstrom-Higgins is the Executive Vice President of Ancient Peaks Winery in Paso Robles. She is also the founder of Dream Big Darling, a nonprofit dedicated to mentoring the next generation of women in the wine industry. Amanda was on the cover of Wine Enthusiast Magazine’s 40 Under 40 issue featuring “the trailblazers who are defining the wine industry as we know it”. The proceeds for One Stone go to Dream Big Darling which is already changing the lives of young women that one day will only imagine what a male dominating industry was.
Enjoy this wine on any day and every day. Pair it with a purpose.
Founders – Amanda Wittstrom-Higgins Winemaker – Stewart Cameron
Tres Sabores Petit Sirah, Calistoga 2017 ~ Julie Johnson
Tres Sabores Vineyard & Winery has a very special place on our hearts. It is where our friend Julie Johnson calls home and our Golden Retriever Benny was born. Tres Sabores (translates to “Three Flavors” in Spanish) is referred to as the ranch by those that love it most. It is a magical place that seems to have its own glorious eco-system where bluebirds, red tail hawks, guinea fowl, sheep and golden retrievers make the most memorable back drop. The vines have been farmed organically since 1972 and continue to be dry farmed. The wines are fermented naturally with the ambient wild yeast. AND the people…they make this place the most magical of all.
Julie is not only the owner of the ranch but also the winemaker. She was one of the very first vintners to farm organically in California and is an advocate and teacher of sustainability. Julie is also the co-founder of Women for WineSense which provides scholarships to support women pursuing education and careers in wine.
Tres Sabores and this Petit Sirah are not new to Colony, but I just had to include Julie’s wine in this release. This inky, tannic, rustic wine will pair perfectly with Easter Leg of Lamb, those that you love, and the gift of salvation.
Founder – Julie Johnson Winemaker – Julie Johnson