This being the beginning of a new set of 12 months, most other wine writers are coughing up their top ten lists of favorite wines.
Since I don't review wines, per se (though I gladly accept samples of Lodi wines that I'll write about) I'll spend my digital ink on pouring out some appreciation.
There would be no Lodi Wine Guy if my Publisher Marty Weybret and Editor Rich Hanner hadn't gone looking to do a better job covering Lodi's chief crop back in June 2007. They reached out to Mark Chandler at the Lodi Winegrape Commission who recommended me. Thank you, Marty, Rich and Mark.
Thanks go to my partners-in-wine at our own Pantheon Cellars: Nick and Sandy Sikeotis and my wine-smart wife, Molly Bjork. I wouldn't have wanted to write about wine if I weren't actually making it along with this enjoyable team of life-long friends.
To all my winery clients - about a third of Lodi's total - thank you for not only supporting my family, but also for allowing me to play a small part in helping you get started or making you stronger, while giving me endless tidbits to write about.
Though my assignment started out as simply to make everyone "a little smarter" about wine, it's no secret that I've layered on a heavy dose of cheerleading for Lodi wine. It is extremely gratifying to see our collective effort gaining respect for Lodi as we work to realize the amazing potential of this God-blessed land we live on.