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Pinot Briefs —Newsletter 11.14

Mark Bixler, Founder of Kistler Vineyards Dies Bixler partnered with Steve Kistler to found Kistler Vineyards in 1978. He played an instrumental role in the success of the winery, serving as business manager, directing sales and marketing and acting as the winery’s enologist.

Deleting Sulfites from Wine There has been increased interest in developing ways to remove sulfite preservatives from wine for people who have an intolerance to sulfites. Symptoms of chest tightness, hives, stomach cramps, diarrhea and breathing problems have been reported according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The specific mechanisms causing sulfite intolerance are unclear, but in some individuals, the sensitivity to sulfites appears to be an allergic response. People with asthma are at an increased risk of having asthma symptoms following exposure to sulfites. Research at the University of Kansas School of Engineering has led to the design and marketing of a low-cost, easy-to-use device that would filter up to 99 percent of sulfites from wine when it is poured from the bottle. The device is applied to the top of the bottle, and like an aerator, as a glass of wine is poured, the device removes sulfites. Many current products on the market for removing sulfites have shortcomings due to cost and failure to remove all sulfites. The device developed at Kansas University, which is projected to cost only 99 cents, from is not yet commercially available.

January Wine Events January 12-21, British Columbia, Canada, Okanagan Winter Wine Festival,; January 13-14, Sonoma Winter Wineland,; and January 19-28, Mendocino County Crab, Wine & Beer Festival,

Residents of Sardinia, Italy, Attribute Longevity to Wine A report in USA Today (November 15, 2017) on the people of Sardinia, who are the oldest people in the world, attribute their longevity to a daily intake of red wine. The residents of this island in the Mediterranean also are physical active, eat healthy, and have a small, isolated gene pool. One of the residents interviewed said, “Go live your life, work hard and be active - and a little wine. It’s one of the secrets, but just a little. Don’t abuse it.”

Weight Watchers Debuts Lower Calorie Wine A line of white diet wines have been developed called Cense that have 85 calories a glass compared to 120 calories for standard white wines. A Rosé is also planned. A Weight Watches approval is on the back label and can be removed if the consumer does not want others to know they are dieting.The wines are priced at $13-$15 and are made by Truett-Hurst Winery in Healdsburg. My comment would be that 35 calories mikes little difference when one consumes a glass of wine and seems silly to drink a wine with compromised taste just to save 35 calories.

Brooks Winery Celebrates 20 Years in 2018 The cornerstone of the winery’s celebration in 2018 is to return the gratitude of of those in the wine community that made this celebration possible. Each winemaker who collaborated to allow the winery to carry on upon the passing of Jimi Brooks in 2004 will be celebrated for one month in 2018. Brooks will feature one of these 12 wineries each month throughout the year, with one of their white and red wines included in the flights poured in the Brooks tasting room. Each winemaker will also spend a Saturday at Brooks during the month they are featured, pouring their wines and sharing stories. Each of the 12 winemakers will be interviewed for the Linfield College Oregon Wine History Archies and will be featured in a follow-up film to the American Wine Story, directed by David Baker. One of the winemakers, Patricia Green, recently passed away but the winery will be represented. Brooks will also produce the Red Letter Pinot Noir, a limited-release wine last made for the 10th anniversary and will include grapes from three vineyards Jimi farmed: Brooks Estate, Momtazi Vineyard and WillaKenzie. Visit, for a schedule of participating winemakers.

MIXT Studio Reusable Wine Bags These festive wine bags feature ethnic-inspired prints and a metallic gold interior. They are adorned with a tassel and a unique “traveling tag,” so that each bottle bag shares the story of where it has been as it gets gifted forward. The tag features five write-in slots, meaning each new recipient can see the bag’s journey as it gets reused. The eco-friendly, heavy-duty Tyvek® bags are recyclable and water resistant. The bags, a thoughtful holiday hostess gift, can now be found in over 300 stores nationwide and online at

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