It’s been gone for a couple of years now, but every Sunday I still mourn the loss of Bob Morris’ Age of Dissonance column in the New York Times. To me, Morris managed to strike a perfect pose somewhere between etiquette watchdog and snarky culture critic, and I waited all week to see what he’d serve up next. One of my favorite of Morris’ columns was a rant about the inanity of elaborate birthday and anniversary celebrations honoring every age and milestone imaginable. Like overused antibiotics, Morris wrote, these numbers begin to lose their potency after a while.
This observation made me smile, in part because in the wine industry, it truly seems like there’s an anniversary being celebrated every few minutes. In fact, soon after I read that column of Morris’, I had occasion to write my own about a certain local winery’s 125th anniversary celebration (pretty legit)—which, said winery eagerly noted, happen to coincide with the 10th anniversary of its golf course (slightly less legit) and the 30th anniversary of the band Foreigner (seriously pushing it).
Indeed, Morris noted that low-number anniversaries for businesses should only be celebrated by the “very powerful and very desperate,” so I don’t imagine he’d object to Schug Carneros Estate Winery marking it’s 30th anniversary this year with the release of its first-ever estate grown Pinot Noir. After all, proprietor Walter Schug is a well-respected “old-timer” in California’s wine industry, having served as winemaker at Napa’s famed Joseph Phelps Vineyards from 1973 to 1983.
And while the new Schug Pinot won’t come out till later in the year, you can still celebrate at the winery next Saturday, April 17th, during “April in Carneros,” a winery open house event featuring more than 20 Carneros-area wineries. The event takes place 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; for tickets and more information visit www.carneroswineries.org.