Free Government Seminar on Winery Regulations

The new and ever changing regulations that constrain Oklahoma wineries can be one of the biggest obstacles to new winery investment in the state. Thankfully, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, part of the of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, is holding a seminar to help struggling entrepreneurs comply with the law.

It is my belief that by attending this seminar, you will save yourself a lot of time spent trying to figure out the TTB maze and you will have direct access to the human beings who are involved in regulating our industry. If you have ever considered opening your own winery I urge you to register and attend the seminar. - Rinda Skaggs, OGGWMA Education Chair

Get the full details on this education event from Oggwma's website:
Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau Industry Seminar


StableRidge Vineyards Birthday Party June 4-5

2005 Anniversary Party June 4th and 5th

StableRidge Vineyards will be celebrating their first anniversary June 4th and 5th. In addition to loads of games and prizes, they will also be premiering some of their latest wines: Pinot Grigio (Dry), Pinot Grigio (Semi-Sweet), and Shiraz.

StableRidge Vineyards Winery & Inn - Route 66 Stroud Oklahoma

Grapevine Hybridization Procedures Using Grape Flowers

I walked the vineyards at Nuyaka Creek Winery this weekend. The Merlot and Leon Millot vines were just about to bloom and it was a spectacular day to spend in the country. Since the grapes are nearly in flower, I thought it would be a good time to point out an excellent article on Cornell University's website.

Read the article below to gain an almost 'Bee-like' knowledge of grape flower pollenization.

The earliest varieties were propagated from choice wild seedlings, the products of chance crosses between vines. The process of breeding, however, goes one step further, by controlling pollination and choosing which varieties will act as parents for seed production. Parents must be carefully chosen based on the traits desired in the progeny, and what might already be known about a parent's ability to impart those desired traits to its seedlings. The purpose of this web site is to explain the technology of grape hybridization once parental vines have been identified.

Once you have created your own Super Wine Grape drop us a line here at Oklahoma Wine News. We'll try and spread the word.

Grape Breeding Procedures


Stone Bluff Cellars Dinner Event - May 13

Sunset at Stone Bluff by Mikael

Enjoy a gourmet dinner and vineyard tour this May at Stone Bluff's lovely Winery and vineyard! Check out the menu:

  • Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup

  • Wild Greens w/ Roasted Tomato & Garlic Vinaigrette

  • Coq au Vin (Chicken braised in wine) with potato croquettes and seasonal vegetables

  • Chocolate Truffle Torte

Time: 6:30 PM - 10:00 PM

Sounds swanky to me, I'd call for reservations: (918) 482-5655

Stone Bluff Cellars


Trellis and Tying Methods Seminar April 30

Learn to Trellis Grapes at Woods and Waters Winery

Wine grapes that are carefully trained on the appropriate trellis are more productive, healthy and bring a higher price per ton when harvested.

Saturday April 30,2005
Time: 1:00-5:00 p.m.
Location: Woods & Waters Winery

The time has been arranged so that all members can drive from home and arrive in time for lunch and seminar.

Cost: $10 per person and includes lunch at the Vineyard (please be prompt) and a $5 per person donation to the OGGWMA Education Fund.


Mystery Dinner Theatre in Luther

Dinner Theater at the Winery

UPDATE: Event Date changed to May 20 - Tres Sueños is sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused. Please call 277-7089 if you would like to make reservations, or if you need to cancel due to the change in date.

May 20, 2005 - Presenting the Third Tres Sueños Winery - Mystery Dinner Theatre! Dinner begins at 6:30 with the play beginning at 7:00. Dinner meal provided by Zios Italian Restaurant. Comedy murder mystery performed by Whodunit Dining Room.

This hilarious comedy is a hillbilly satire called Eenie-Meenie-Murder-Moe. Call 277-7089 for reservations. $24.95 includes meal, drink, and play!

Wine may be purchased separately. Check out Whodunit's website for more info: www.whodunit.net


Wine Industry PR Blog - Fermentations

Interested in learning more about wine industry public relations? Visit Tom Wark's Wine Industry PR blog Fermentations. Help him in his quest to learn what it takes to make the perfect wine news blog.

Heck, drop me a comment...I'd like the answer to that one myself!
Fermentations Wine PR Blog.


Higher Education Option for Oklahoma Vineyard Owners

Press Release
April 15, 2005 from Rinda Skaggs , Education Chair
Oklahoma Grape Growers and Wine Makers Association


The cornerstone for higher education curriculum for Oklahoma vineyard owners and their employees has been laid by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education through a recent Economic Development grant to Redlands Community College in El Reno, Oklahoma. According to the official grant announcement by William Baker, Vice President of Instruction and Student Services for Redlands Community College:

Redlands Community College will receive approximately $170,000 for its collaborative project with VESTA (Viticulture and Enology Science and Technology Alliance) and the grape industry.

The purpose of the project is to provide a sound education and training curriculum for the grape-growing and wine-making industries, particularly in the economically depressed areas of Lincoln County and adjacent areas. The project also provides undergraduate education and research opportunities that benefit the students and the grape industry, while bringing lab services to small- and medium-sized operations.

Rinda Skaggs, Education Chairman for the Oklahoma Grape Growers and Wine Makers Association said Friday that she would make the promotion of the programs at Redlands Community College and future developments at other universities, the top priority of the OGGWMA Education Committee. "We must prepare the emerging generation of grape growers for the responsibilities of continuing the work started across Oklahoma. Already there are jobs waiting in Oklahoma wineries for workers in vineyard management, marketing, and in all business functions of the value added processing facilities at the wineries and juice company."

Until now, there has been no source of educated workers inside Oklahoma. "All of our certified professionals have been trained out of state." Skaggs and her husband, James, own Rock Creek Vineyard in Norman. They travel 310 miles each month for course work at Grayson County Community College in Dennison, Texas. Other Oklahomans drive to Dennison from Northwestern and Northeastern corners of the state.

Skaggs applauds the State Regents for the foresight and vision to recognize the value of the grape and wine industry to Oklahoma’s future economic wealth. "We’ve had an incredible amount of support from the state Secretaries of Agriculture and Commerce and their staff. They have gone out of their way to help us spread the message of our vision for Oklahoma’s future. We are delighted that our Regents recognize the potential growth of our industry in rural economic development."

The OGGWMA membership is a mix of professionals with backgrounds in medicine, business, agriculture, engineering, education and government. Most have returned to Oklahoma to invest retirement nest eggs to establish the vineyards and wineries of Oklahoma. Many hold advanced degrees. "We value higher education and have been working to establish training for Oklahoma students." Skaggs said.

Above all, Skaggs congratulates the Lincoln County Grape Growers Association for partnering with Redland Community College in applying for the grant. “Their president, Don Neal, has been responsible for coordinating the delivery of 21,000 new vines to be planted in the area this spring. These new growers will need the support offered by Redlands Community College as soon as it can be extended.”.

Quoting JL Gilbert, co owner of Sparks Vineyard and Winery in Lincoln County," ‘What took decades to establish in Napa Valley is happening at the speed of light in Oklahoma’", Skaggs concluded.

Information about salaried positions in the wine and grape industry can be found at winejobs.com which is the online jobsite for Wine Business Monthly magazine.The Oklahoma Grape Growers and Wine Makers Association can be contacted at their website:



Three Big Wine Events April 16, 2005

Don't Stay Home This Weekend - 3 Wine Events to Attend!

The weather is going to be wonderful and the wine will be flowing in Oklahoma. With three big Oklahoma winery events this weekend, you surely don't want to be stuck at home watching TV!

1. OSU's tulsa campus will be the location for the Pawcasso Art Auction and Wine Soiree. Bid on great silent auction items and enjoy Oklahoma Wines from Sparks Winery and live music by Rebecca Ungerman.

2. Saturday, April, 16, 2005 you can celebrate plant a grape vine month with Summerside Winery in Vinita. Just buy two bottles of Summerside wine and get a Cynthiana Grape Vine for only $1.00!

3. Folks in the Okemah area can expect free crawfish, BBQ and Bocce at the Grape Ranch Bud Break Party.

It's all happening in Oklahoma this Saturday!


Wine Tasters Should Protect Their Teeth

Don't Let Wine Ruin Your Smile

Usuf Chikte, of the University of Stellenbosch, will be awarded a PhD for his recent research into the struggle between the grape and the gumline. His study found that the teeth of regular drinkers can become more sensitive, discolour or even crumble away as a result of the wines acidity.

A wine company noticed it was paying out an unusually high amount for the dental problems of it workers, especially the wine tasters who rinse their mouths with wine up to 120 times per day. They approached Chikte to study the problem.

It turns out that, according to Chikte's dissertation, any food or drink with a pH value lower than 5.5 can damage people's teeth and wine usually tips the scales at a pH value around 2 or 3!

Wine drinkers can counter the negative effects of wine by, among others, drinking a lot of water, not keeping the wine in their mouths for too long, and eating something like cheese which provides minerals for the teeth.

Chikte's recommendation for people who drink or taste wine as part of their jobs is to visit the dentist every three months for fluoride treatment.

I was surprised when I noticed how quickly red wine darkens my teeth, but I had no idea it was damaging the enamel. Bummer, I need a drink of wine and some cheese!

Full article: Wine could mess up your smile


The Yellow Morels Are Here

Taste Oklahoma

If you have visited Nuyaka Creek Winery lately, you probably met my Dad... Pete Jones.

Dad works the winery most days dispensing: grape growing info, sage advice for new vintners and Oklahoma's widest selection of uniquely Oklahoma wines. However lately he has been slipping off to participate in the Spring Morel Hunt.

You see, in addition to his winemaking prowess, he is keenly knowledgeable about the habits and habitations of the elusive yellow morel mushroom that briefly visit our parts of Oklahoma every year. Last weekend he even treated my devoted wife and I to the finest fried morel mushroom feast that I have had the pleasure enjoying in years. What a guy!

Next time you visit Nuyaka Creek Winery, stop by and visit with Dad about two of his favorite subjects: red wine and morels. He won't show you his hunting spots, but he just might turn you on to our secret family recipe for the best cajun fried morels you ever tasted!

Does My Winery Need a Website?

It is becoming increasingly clear that wineries need websites much more than the average small business.

Among other things wineries need websites to:

  • Gather Newsletter Subscribers

  • Market Your Wines Globally 24 Hours a Day

  • Help Customers To Recognize Your Labels

  • Provide Contact Info to Local Grape Growers

  • Highlight the Retailers That Carry Your Wines

  • Show the Background and History of Your Winery

  • Post Press Releases for New Events and Products

  • Publish Tasting Notes for the Wines You Sell

  • Demonstrate Your Experience, Friendliness and Competence

  • Display a Printable Map and Driving Directions to Your Winery

Paul Chaney of the Radiant Marketing Group blog found new research from The Kelsey Group that shows a trend where more consumers are going to Internet search engines for local shopping information than are consulting their phone books.

The report shows that 70% of US adults use the Internet as an information source when shopping locally – up from 60% the previous year. These figures put the Internet on par with newspapers as a local shopping resource. The biggest loser? Yellow pages – with usage declining from 75% to 62%.

The list of Oklahoma wineries with websites is growing rapidly as more folks discover that Google is the new Yellow Pages! If you need a winery website fast, contact VineByDesign.com


Live Music in the Vines Every Sunday

Free concert every Sunday afternoon at Indian Creek Village Winery!
Every Sunday from 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Enjoy Brandi Morris - Singing Artist
Snacks, wine, & grape juice will be served on deck, for more information call (580) 883-4919
Indian Creek Village Winery


Herb Day in Brookside Saturday April 9

Herb Day in Brookside is Today!

Support Oklahoma Herb Growers and wine producers at the 10th annual Herb Day in Brookside, Saturday, April 9, from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.

More than 20,000 fresh herbs, potpourri, aromatherapy, oils, vinegars, and local vintners will be awaiting you at 1403 East 41st Street (on 41st just east of Peoria). Everything will be locally grown and produced. For more information call (918) 743-5136.

Local vintners and vendors expected to participate include: Cabin Creek Vineyard, Nuyaka Creek Winery, Stone Bluff Cellars, Peppermint Dragon, Clear Creek Farms, Amanda’s Greenhouse, Running Rabbit, Cedar Works, Neal T. Cluck Original Wood Designs, Aunt Nettie’s Herbs and Soaps, Moonshadow Herb Farm, Wild Things Nursery, Hogshooter’s Creek Farm, Goldenrod Farm, Utopia Gardens, Brookside Pottery, CD3 Farm, Turtle Creek Designs, Lavendar Hill Farm and Rising Star Farm.

Dad says he will be pouring and selling several of Nuyaka Creek Winery's unique herbal wines made from Elderberry and Sumac as well as our more traditional Ruby Cabernet (a 2001 vintage that is not to be missed). Stop by and meet the winemaker, tell 'em you heard about it on Oklahoma Wine News!

ValueNews.com - Sample the taste of spring at area gardening festivals and events


2005 Drumright WineFest June 11

Oklahoma Wine Festival in Drumright

The Drumright Chamber of Commerce will again be hosting one of Oklahoma's largest Summer wine festivals from Noon until 6 p.m. at Whitlock Park on June 11, 2005.

Several great Oklahoma wineries will be pouring their wares. Enjoy live blues/jazz music, art, food, vineyard tours by trolley and much more.

For more info call: 918-352-2204 or email: drumrightwinefest@earthlink.net


Summerside Vineyards Creme Sherry Wins Silver in Dallas

2005 Dallas Morning News International Wine Competition

Congratulations go out to Summerside Vineyards & Winery in Vinita, Oklahoma. The Oklahoma winery was awarded a silver medal for its Creme Sherry wine at the prestigious Dallas Morning News International Wine Competition.

The 2005 competition received 3,064 entries from around the world and had 49 judges.

Summerside Vineyards and Winery - Bed & Breakfast, Deli and Wine Tasting at our Vineyard off Route 66


Dianne Reviews Tulsa’s Korean Garden

Some urban areas of America already classify Soju, South Korea's classic social lubricant, in the same category as beer and wine. This is increasing its availability in restaurants and clubs. Dianne's latest restaurant review will direct you to where to go in Oklahoma to taste Soju for yourself.

I prefer mine straight with a little something sweet, like ice tea for a chaser.

Soju and Sushi at Tulsa’s Korean Garden by Dianne Jones

Grape Ranch Bud Break Party April 16

Bud Break Party

Head out toward Okemah, Oklahoma for wine, beer and music plus Free Crawfish and BBQ while it lasts!

While you are there try out the popular Italian Game: Bocce.
Bocce fans claim the game helps improve their bowling, golf and shuffleboard because it has many features of these games in it. There is no age limit for the Bocce players. Many elderly citizens play the game for relaxation and exercise.

Date: Saturday, April 16, 2005 - 3 - 9pm
Place: Grape Ranch - Okemah
Contact: http://www.graperanch.com