When it’s Okay to Drink Wine in a Zoom Meeting: Online Tastings With Frey Vineyards
Frey Vineyards has joined the Zoom revolution—leading monthly online tastings to share fun and informative conversations with wine drinkers from around the country.
What happens when we can’t open our Frey Vineyards tasting room doors and pour wine for you? We bring the tasting room to your living room! We were sorely missing greeting visitors at the winery even before the pandemic imposed social-distancing restrictions; we lost our tasting room in the Northern California wildfires in 2017 and have been busy rebuilding a beautiful new facility since then. We didn’t want to wait any longer, so this year we joined the Zoom revolution and we’re leading monthly online tastings to share fun and informative conversations with wine drinkers from around the country.
The premise of our online tastings is simple: Each month we select a duo or trio of wines to taste and offer the package at a discounted rate on our online wine shop. Participants can order their wine in advance to have it arrive before the scheduled tasting. You can also join the tasting for free without ordering wine selections by emailing us. Tastings are hosted by Nick Frey (pictured), son of winemaker Paul Frey, as well as Executive Director Katrina Frey and assistant winemaker Eliza Frey, who interviews family members, winery staff, or special guests for the first 30-40 minutes, and then we open up the forum for Q&A. During the second half of the tasting session, viewers can see and interact with the other participants. “We value being able to see each other’s faces. The wine tastings are about community as much as they are about enjoying and learning about wine!” says Nick.
Viewers can also post questions and comments in the chatbox throughout the duration; we try to answer all questions as soon as we can. “With many consistent participants, our virtual tastings have begun to feel like a community, and we love answering questions and catching up!” reports Nick. Because we have a unique winemaking style of crafting organic and Biodynamic wine without added sulfites, there is so much information to learn and so much to share. We enjoy delving deep into the history of ancient winemaking, organic and Biodynamic agriculture, incorporating farm animals into the vineyards, and astronomy wisdom. And we’re light-hearted and love what we do, which always makes learning enjoyable. Our online tastings are a great way to get the inside scoop on the fundamentals of a bountiful and multifaceted working winery and ranch.
To date our guests have included our organic vineyard manager Derek Dahlen and assistant winemaker Eliza Frey-Dahlen speaking about life at the Frey Ranch, and Ashley Chesser of the Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides discussing how to advance healthy alternatives to harmful chemicals through research, education, and advocacy. Upcoming sessions will occur April 14th and May 1st. On April 14th we feature the collaborative trio of Kwaya wines celebrating unity and African culture (2019 Organic Chardonnay, 2019 Organic Merlot & 2019 Organic Sangiovese) hosted by Frey's Executive Director Katrina Frey and Nicky Coachman Robinson of Kwaya Cellars. On May 1st host Katrina Frey debuts new behind-the-scenes grape growing and NSA winemaking videos, during an entertaining and lively Eco Farm Spring Virtual Tasting Event.
We look forward to welcoming you to our new tasting room in Redwood Valley in Northern California soon. In the meantime, we look forward to meeting you online and raising our glasses in a toast. Who knows, we just might continue in the future with the success of virtual tastings!
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