Friday, September 28, 2012

Grape Stomp at McGrail

Tomorrow is our 2nd Annual Grape Stomp at McGrail Vineyards.  We will pick Petite Sirah from a neighbors vineyard early tomorrow morning and around noon we will welcome guests to try their best at stomping grapes.  (Don't worry, we actually discard the juice -- it's only for fun!)

The front lawn of McGrail Vineyards and Winery will be laid out with 6 half barrels filled with grapes.  Get a group of 6 together or just come on your own and we'll fill in the extra spots and race to stomp out the most juice.  Everyone will get to stomp for 1 minute and then the juice will be measured and the winner gets a prize.  Everyone that participates will take home a "I stomped Grapes at McGrail Vineyards" t-shirt and you can add your purple toes to the shirt.

If you decide to just watch the grape stomp you will have a great time as well!  TankHalfFull will be entertaining the guests with live music and food will be available to purchase by Posada Catering.  Come out to McGrail Vineyards tomorrow: Saturday, September 29th 12-4PM.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

California Wine Month and Winemaker Dinners with McGrail

McGrail Vineyards and Winery Celebrates California Wine Month with Two Winemaker Dinners


LIVERMORE, CA – September 13, 2012  McGrail Vineyards and Winery is celebrating California Wine Month along with the Wine Institute.  Governor Jerry Brown, proclaimed California Wine Month, for the eighth consecutive year, where we celebrate the states rich wine history, abundant agricultural efforts, and lifestyle and economic impact of wine country.  Wine regions across California are popping corks this month to celebrate all that our great state has to offer.

 McGrail Vineyards and Winery is participating in two winemaker dinners in the month of September.  On September 18, 2012, Livermore Valley Winemakers will team together to showcase the Valley’s terroir with creations from Blackhawk Grille.  This 5 course meal will include wines from Wente Vineyards, Darcie Kent, Steven Kent Winery, McGrail Vineyards, and Wood Family Vineyards.  Tickets are $95 and reservations are accepted by calling Blackhawk Grille (925) 736-4295. 

September 25, 2012, McGrail and Double Barrel Wine Bar, in Livermore, will pair for the second time, for an eclectic Winemaker Dinner.  McGrail Vineyards 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve and Double Barrels cocoa rubbed pork belly pairing took home the top honors at the Livermore Valley Taste of Terroir event in July, 2012.  The “Judges Best” winners were thrilled and excited to expand on their pairing for an entire evening of food and wine indulgences.

Executive chef, Tony Murray and Sous Chef Ashley Ullrich, put together a dazzling menu that includes Tasmanian salmon, oysters & pearls, pork belly, duck and white bean cassoulet, and dessert.  McGrail Vineyards winemaker, Mark Clarin, explained that a special, not released, small lot Cabernet from McGrail will be paired with one of the courses.  This special bottle is the James Vincent Cabernet which is aged for 30 months in new French oak and runs $65/bottle.

For reservations and tickets, please contact Double Barrel Wine Bar at (925) 243-7463 or

McGrail Vineyards and Winery, located in the Livermore Valley American Viticulture Area in Northern California, is owned by the McGrail family. Double Barrel Wine Bar, located in Downtown Livermore is owned and operated by Kristin and Robert Armstrong.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

September Events and News

McGrail Wine Lovers,
September is California Wine Month, so pick up your favorite CA wine and enjoy a month long celebration.  We picked and crushed Sauvignon Blanc last week and the juice is already tasting amazing!  September is a gorgeous time at the winery, the vines are luscious and full and the sunsets are breathtaking.  Come out and see us!

Upcoming Events 
Livermore Valley Winemaker Dinner at Blackhawk Grill

Tuesday, September 18th
Don't miss this great evening of Livermore Valley Wineries paired with delicious dishes from Executive Chef Jason Buckley from Blackhawk Grill. Buy your tickets by calling Blackhawk Grill at 925-736-4295.

Sunset Wine Concert with SAGE
Saturday, September 22nd 

Bring your dancing shoes, blankets, and lawn chairs for a fun filled evening of dancing, a beautiful sunset, wine and food.  Soleil Pizza will be selling wood-fired pizzas, so please no outside food or beverages.  Tickets available online or at the door.
$15/entry fee  

Double Barrel Wine Bar Taste of Terroir Winners Pair up for Award Winning Winemaker Dinner 
Tuesday, September 25th
If you missed Taste of Terroir or attended and loved our pairing, please join us for an Award Winning Winemaker Dinner as we partner with Double Barrel Wine Bar to showcase our pork belly cocoa rubbed pairing that won the Judges Best Award!  Not only will the dinner be scrumptious, we are bringing a special wine for one of the pairings... our James Vincent Cabernet.  To make reservations, please call Double Barrel (925) 243-9463.  
$95/person plus tax and gratuity
Grape Stomp at McGrail

Saturday, September 29th
Come out to McGrail to see all of the fun during Harvest.  Partake in some "I love Lucy" action by Stomping grapes.  Grab a friend and race to fill the bottle first.    Fullest bottle in 30 seconds wins a prize.  Once you are done stomping be prepared to get your purple toes on a t-shirt and decorate your keepsake t-shirt.  Soleil Pizza will be 
selling gourmet wood-fired pizzas and live music will keep you entertained.
$15/person to stomp (includes t-shirt)


 Visit us:  Fridays - Sunday 12-4:00PM

Wine Club Member Reminders
   Save the Date:

James Vincent Release Party and Member Appreciation Evening at the Winery
Thursday, October 18th 5-8PM

California Wine Month

Governor Jerry Brown proclaimed September, California Wine Month.  September highlight the state's rich wine history and all that its vintners and growers add to the lifestyle and economy of the Golden State.  We find something special about California wines every month, but there is something extra special in September as it is the beginning of crush.  Come join the excitement at McGrail and taste wines where the grapes are grown!

Harvest in the Vineyard
Chardonnay fruit  
Our Cabernet is coming along beautifully, we are very excited for the 2012 Vintage!  We have been testing the brix levels (sugar levels) for our Chardonnay and it looks like we will be picking next week.

Winemaker Dinner at Blackhawk Grille - September 18th, 2012

Another Big Win for 2008 Reserve Cabernet

McGrail Vineyards and Winery Cabernet Wins Best Cabernet for the Ladies in Cabernet Shootout 2012

LIVERMORE, CA – January 31, 2012  – McGrail Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve from McGrail Vineyards and Winery, a family-owned producer of premium wines in the Livermore Valley, recently placed in the top thirty at the 7th Annual Cabernet Shootout and was then voted the number one wine for women by the three hundred consumers that showed up at The Winery SF on Treasure Island.

The 7th Annual Cabernet Shootout hosted by Affairs of the Vine and the Bay Area Wine Society included 287 Cabernet Sauvignon entrants from 56 different appellations. This prestigious blind tasting was conducted by two panels—one all male and one all female. The wine writers, sommeliers, winemakers and wine professionals blindly taste over a period of 6 to 12 weeks.  

McGrail Vineyards’ 2008 Reserve Cabernet was among the top ten wines selected by both the male and female panelists, scoring a 91 and 4 hearts, the highest honor.  The top 32 wines were then invited to San Francisco for a large consumer tasting event and competition.

The 2008 McGrail Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve from McGrail was voted the number one wine for women by Bay Area Wine Society and placed in the top 4 for men’s favorite Cabernet. The wine is well balanced with notes of black cherries, vanilla, blackberries, dark caramel, cola and toasted marshmallows.

McGrail Vineyards and Winery, located in the Livermore Valley American Viticultural Area in Northern California, is owned by the McGrail family.  The 2008 Reserve Cabernet took home the Sweepstakes Red Wine Win for the SF Chronicle just two weeks before winning with the Bay Area Wine Society.

Red Sweepstakes Award for McGrail Vineyards

McGrail Vineyards and Winery Cabernet 
named Best Red Wine in SF Chronicle Wine Competition

LIVERMORE, CA – January 31, 2012  – McGrail Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve from McGrail Vineyards and Winery, a family-owned producer of premium wines in the Livermore Valley, won the Sweepstakes Red Wine Award from the 2012 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.

McGrail Vineyards and Winery was one of six Sweepstakes wine winners in the competition.  Categories include Sparking, Rose, White, Red, Dessert, and Label Design.

The San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition has awarded Sonoma Valley, Russian River, and Paso Robles the Sweepstakes Red Wine Award in the past few years, but this is the first time Livermore Valley has achieved the highest accolade at the largest domestic wine competition in the US, with over 5,500 entrants.

The 2008 McGrail Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve from McGrail is well balanced with notes of blackberry, dark cherry, cassis, vanilla, dark caramel, and chocolate covered cherries.  The tannins give nice structure and the finish is velvety smooth. 

McGrail Vineyards and Winery, located in the Livermore Valley American Viticulture Area in Northern California, is owned by the McGrail family. The tasting room opened four years ago on the Greenville Hill with expansive views of the Valley.