Ten Lodi wineries have returned to Southern California to promote the region in a well-known wine show. The California Wine Festival, which began Thursday and ends Saturday in Santa Barbara, features an area known as Lodi Alley, where the area wineries are displayed before the public.
"We are the only wine region at the festivals to be featured as a collective group," said Shannon Harbert, marketing and communications coordinator for the Lodi Winegrape Commission. "It's huge exposure for us."
The festival is actually two separate events. The first portion of the showcase took place in April in Orange County, with the same 10 Lodi wineries participating in that event. The participating wineries (Abundance Vineyards, Michael-David Winery, Oak Ridge Winery, Jessie's Grove Winery, Peltier Station, Klinker Brick Winery, Ironstone Vineyards, Harney Lane Winery, LangeTwins Winery and Ripken Vineyards & Winery) each made their own transportation arrangements to Southern California.
An event coordinator said the efforts of Harbert and Charlene Lange of LangeTwins Winery were integral in making Lodi's large presence a reality.
"We started discussing it in January," said Emily Kaufmann, who coordinates wineries, vendors and sponsorships for the California Wine Festival. "We had worked with several wineries on promoting a section devoted to Zinfandel several years ago and wanted to do something like that again. We told them that if they could get 10 wineries to participate, we'd make it a highlighted area."
"We're going to continue to go on the road," she said. "The wineries know how important it is to get into new markets and just introduce people to the wine."
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