Languedoc Style Olive Tapenade

olive-tapenadeINGREDIENTS:
• 1 cup olives (black or green olives). If you use black olives, stick to Kalamata or Niçoise.
• 2 anchovy fillets, packed in oil
• 3 garlic cloves, peeled
• 2 Tbsp capers, drained
• ½ lemon, juiced (about 1 Tbsp juice)
• 1 Tbsp olive oil*

DIRECTIONS:

• Place all the ingredients in the bowl of your food processor. Pulse until combined and the desired consistency is reached. • Serve with toasted baguette slices and wine. Yields one cup of tapenade, 4 servings. * The oil listed in the ingredients is for a chunkier tapenade. For a more traditional, spreadable tapenade, use 2-3 Tbsp olive oil. Recipe courtesy of CuriousCuisiniere.com

Domain de Nizas wine bottleSilky styleDomaine De Nizas
Les Terres Noires
Languedoc, France

The vineyard of Domaine de Nizas lies in a triangle between the towns of Pézenas, Caux and Nizas and also between two lava spurs that form a natural amphitheater which protects against extreme weather. The name ‘les terres noires’ translates to ‘the black earth’, referencing the Basalt soils that provide complex aromas and elegant structure to the wines. The Vermentino and Viognier juice were fermented in stainless steel tanks to retain varietal freshness. The Roussanne juice was fermented in seasoned French oak. The wine in oak, then underwent regular lees stirring for eight months to build texture and palate weight.

“Surprisingly expressive southern French white wine that embodies the Nizas style of balance and elegance. It is beautiful pale yellow in color with golden tints. On the nose, there are pronounced aromas of citrus, white peach and wild fennel. The fruit-driven palate is round and balanced expressing all of its complex flavors through a lingering finish.”

Winemakers: Nathalie Arnaud-Bernard
Appellation: Languedoc, France
Varietal Blend:  46% Roussanne, 36% Vermentino, 18% Viognier
Analysis: 13.5% alcohol / volume

June Wine Club pairing recipe

CHICKEN CASSOULET

chicken cassouletINGREDIENTS:

• 4 slices bacon, preferably low sodium, cut crosswise into ½ inch strips
• 5 bone in chicken thighs (appx 2 lbs)
• 1 lb chicken sausages (Andouille or garlic/herb)
• 2 ½ cups white beans (great northern or cannellini), soaked overnight
• 1 large onion, minced
• 4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
• 5 cloves of garlic, minced
• 2 carrots, peeled and chopped into 2 inch pieces
• 1 stalk celery, chopped into 2 inch pieces
• 2 bay leaves
• 6 cloves
• 2 tsp chicken demi-glace (optional)
• 2 sprigs rosemary
• 2 sprigs parsley

DIRECTIONS:
• Preheat oven to 300°F.
• Spray cooking oil to coat a Dutch oven or similar size oven proof copper pan. Heat on medium high. Add the bacon and cook about 5 minutes per side until just starting to get crispy. Remove from pan and set aside on a plate with a paper towel.
• Add the chicken to the pan, skin side down. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes without moving to brown the chicken, then turn over to cook for a few more minutes. Remove the chicken and set aside on a platter.
• Add the sausage to the pan. Cook for about 5 minutes to brown, turning occasionally. Remove the sausages and set aside along with the chicken. Move the meat items to the fridge while you cook the beans.
• Add the onion to the pan, cook on medium for about 5 minutes until it begins to soften. Add the carrots, celery and garlic to the pan along with the beans. Stir to combine. Add the stock along with the bay leaves, cloves, rosemary, parsley and demi-glace (if using). Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to low. Cover and cook the beans about 45 minutes, until just tender.
• Remove the cover from the pot. Use a slotted spoon to remove the carrots, celery, rosemary, parsley, bay leaves and cloves. Add the chicken thighs, sausage and bacon back to the pan. Stir to combine with the beans. Arrange the chicken so that the skin is facing upward near the top of the pan.
• Move the pan to the oven and cook uncovered for two hours. A bit of a crust should be starting to develop after two hours. Remove the pan from the oven, gently stir, and return to the oven.
• Continue cooking uncovered in the oven for two more hours, stirring to break up the crust every 30 minutes.
•After 4 hours total cooking time in the oven, let the cassoulet cook for 1 more hour undisturbed to let the crust build up a bit more. After 5 hours cooking time in the oven, your cassoulet should be ready to enjoy! Remove carefully from the oven, and scoop into bowls to enjoy with a Languedoc red wine. Bon appétit! © Photo and recipe courtesy of David at www.CookingChatFood.com

Bold_stickerDomaine De NizasDomaine De Nizas
Les Galets Dorés
Languedoc, France

Located near the medieval village of Pézenas in the heart of the Languedoc region, Domaine de Nizas was created in 1998, by John Goelet, an American descendant of a family of Bordeaux wine merchants. He gave Bernard Portet, of Clos Du Val fame, the mission of selecting the most promising terroirs around Pézenas to establish the estate. Portet acquired individual plots that represented different soil types ultimately creating a rich and diverse source of grapes for crafting artisanal wines of extraordinary quality and depth. Surrounded by garrigue (local wild herbs), the vineyard is a unique mosaic of three deep, well-drained soil types. River pebbles impart freshness and fine tannins while limestone creates powerful wines with red fruit aromas. Domaine De Nizas has been certified sustainable since 2007.

“Expressive, fleshy and fruity, this wine offers pleasant notes of ‘garrigue’. The palate is round and approachable, with flavors of dark fruit and herbs. This wine is ideal with roast rack of lamb with thyme or pork tenderloin casserole with braised vegetables.”  – Nathalie Arnaud-Bernard, winemaker.

Winemaker: Nathalie Arnaud-Bernard
Appellation: Languedoc, France
Varietal Blend:  60% Grenache, 25% Carignan, 15% Syrah
Analysis: 14% alcohol / volume

May Wine Club pairing recipe

Filet Mignon with Balsamic Glaze

filet mignon with balsamic glazeINGREDIENTS:
• 4 (4 oz) filet mignon steaks
• 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
• Kosher Salt
• 4 teaspoons olive oil
• 2/3 cup balsamic vinegar
• 2/3 cup Ranch 32 Cabernet Sauvignon

DIRECTIONS:

• Season both sides of the steaks with the salt and freshly cracked pepper.
• In a separate bowl, mix the balsamic vinegar and Ranch 32 Cabernet Sauvignon and set aside.
• Add the olive oil to the nonstick skillet and heat on medium-high for 30 seconds. Place steaks in hot pan, and cook for 1 minute on each side, or until browned. Reduce the heat to medium-low, and add the balsamic vinegar and red wine mixture.
• Cover, and cook for four minutes on each side, basting with sauce when you turn the meat over.
• Remove the steaks from the pan and place on warmed plates, spoon a bit of glaze over each steak, and serve immediately. Recipe courtesy of D. Fackler at http://www.Epicurious.com

Ranch 32 Cabernet wine bottleBold wine Style logoRanch 32
San Lucas and Hames Valley
Cabernet Sauvignon
Monterey, California

On the west side of the Salinas Valley, directly in the path of Monterey’s relentless afternoon winds, sits Ranch 32. Since the first vine planting in 1972, each vintage is produced in small lots from sustainably farmed estate vineyards that highlight the nuances of the terroir. This Cabernet blends fruit from two estates in the southern part of Monterey County, San Lucas and Hames Valley vineyards. Both sites feature porous soils, hot days and cold nights which are necessary to produce deep, rich, ripe and concentrated Cabernet Sauvignon. Harnessing the breezes that blow through the Salinas Valley daily, the winery and bottling operations are 100% powered by wind. The estate vineyards are also certified by the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance.

Vincent Catalaa winemaker headshot“This Cabernet delivers blackberries, boysenberries, plums, and currants and traces of mocha and violet. On the palate, it is deep, lush, and fruity with balanced acidity and perfectly integrated tannins. Pairs well with grilled steak, barbecued lamb or savory stews.” – winemaker, Vincent Catalaá

Winemakers: Vincent Catalaá
Appellation: Monterey, California
Grape Varietal:  Cabernet Sauvignon
Analysis: 13.5% alcohol / volume

 

Join our Wine Club and you’ll go home with the wines and recipes each month!

Goldschmidt Vineyards

May Winery Spotlight
Tasting Event
>> RSVP at your local WineStyles <<

Join us for our next WINERY SPOTLIGHT tasting event, featuring Goldschmidt Vineyards.

NICK GOLDSCHMIDT, Winemaker and owner

Both originally from New Zealand, Nick Goldschmidt and his wife Yolyn are both owners/vintners and have followed their passion for wine to California.  Join us as we taste some of their incredible single vineyard wines from some of the best vineyards in Alexander Valley, Napa Valley and Russian River Valley.

In 1998 Nick and Yolyn, established their own line of wines with the release of Goldschmidt Vineyards. Having produced so many world class wines from around the globe, they knew exactly which vineyard sites they would choose to make Goldschmidt wines.

GOLDCHMIDIT VINEYARDS

For the Goldschmidt Vineyard brand they have created two distinct Cabernet Sauvignons, one from Alexander Valley in Sonoma and the other from Oakville in Napa Valley. The Cabernet Sauvignon is from two prestigious vineyards in Northern California, located on the northeastern slope in the Alexander Valley, and Game Ranch Vineyard, located on old river bottom on the eastern bench of the Silverado Trail. Both showcase the optimum silhouettes of Cabernet Sauvignon from Alexander Valley and Napa Valley.

Under the Forefathers brand Nick and Yolyn produce a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, an Australian Shiraz, and a California Cabernet Sauvignon. The wines Nick and Yolyn Goldschmidt produce are all single vineyard, 100% varietal, handcrafted, small production artisan wines.

Joined periodically in the field by their five children, the Goldschmidt expertise is being passed down to the next generation, as evidenced in the wines released under the labels Chelsea Goldschmidt, Hilary Goldschmidt and Katherine Goldschmidt. The winery offices are located in Healdsburg, California.

Attend our Winery Spotlight, and taste wines from premium vineyards! 

GOLDSCHMIDT VINEYARDS
Winery Spotlight Tasting
ALEXANDER VALLEY, CALIFORNIA

Please join us as we Taste, Learn and Enjoy®
Limited Seating Available – Reserve your seat ASAP!

Beef Empanadas

beef empanadas with wineINGREDIENTS:
• 1 lb minced beef
• 2 spoons of butter
• ½ cup of onion (chopped)
• 2 big tomatoes (chopped)
• 3 oz green chilli
• 1 bay leaf
• ¼ teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon merquén
• 2 spoonfuls of black olives (chopped)
• 1 packet of empanada dough (or another puff pastry dough, like phillo)
• 1 egg yolk
• 1 spoonful of water

DIRECTIONS:

Fry the onions in the butter, add the meat until it is lightly golden. Add the tomatoes, chilli, bay leaf, merquén and salt; cook over a low flame for between 30 – 35 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the majority of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from the heat, discard the bay leaf and add the olives. Put three spoonfuls of filling (when cool enough the handle) in the middle of each empanada skin and fold over in the middle; press the edges together with your fingers to form a half-moon shape closed sealed around the edges and filled inside.  Use a fork on the edges to fully seal them. With a fork carefully pierce a couple of holes in the top side of the empanada. Using a pastry brush, brush some egg wash (the mixture of egg yolk and water) on the top side of each empanada. Cook in the oven at 400° for 20 to 25 minutes or until they are golden. © Recipe courtesy of WinesOfChile.org

Mellow style logoHuellas Reserve Merlot wine bottleHullas Reserve
Merlot
Curico Valley, Chile

Located in Chile’s central valley, about 124 miles south of Santiago, Curicó Valley is known for a variety of grapes and as one of the most productive wine regions. Legendary Spanish viticulturist Miguel Torres first arrived to the valley in 1979 and revolutionized Chile’s wine industry. He brought with him European techniques and foreign investment that would cement Chile’s reputation for producing premium wines of outstanding value. Influenced by the Andes Mountains with cold nights and hot summer days, this region has a Mediterranean climate. The proximity to the Lontue River creates a microclimate that moderates temperatures.

Bright and intense ruby red in color, this Merlot presents aromas that recall blackberries, red cherries, and sweet plums, with spicy black pepper and cinnamon notes as well as subtle touches of vanilla and cocoa rounding out the complex nose. The palate offers a firm structure with smooth tannins that meld together and persist through a long finish.” – Garlos Gatica, winemaker.

Winemaker: Carlos Gatics
Appellation: Molina Andes, Curicó Valley, Chile
Varietal: 96% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Sauvignon
Analysis: 14.1% alcohol by volume; 3.5 pH; 5.3 g/L total acidity

Chef John’s Crab Cakes

Video – Click here to watch Chef John make his crab cakes

INGREDIENTS:
• 8 saltine crackers, finely crushed
• 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
• ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
• ½ teaspoon seafood seasoning (Old Bay)
• ¼ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
• 1 egg, beaten
• salt to taste
• 1 pinch cayenne pepper (optional)
• 1 pound fresh crab meat, well-drained
• ¼ cup dry bread crumbs
• 2 tablespoons butter

DIRECTIONS:

• Mix saltine crackers, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, seafood seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, egg, salt and cayenne pepper in a large bowl.
• Stir in crab meat until mixture is combined but still chunky. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
• Sprinkle bread crumbs on a plate.
• Shape chilled crab mixture into 4 small thick patties; coat completely with bread crumbs.
• Melt butter in a skillet over medium-heat; cook crab cakes until golden brown, about 4 minutes per side.

Serving brunch? Try a Crab Cake Benedict, replacing the Canadian bacon and English muffin with a crab cake instead. Top it with a poached egg, side of mixed greens and glass of Huellas Sauvignon Blanc.  Recipe courtesy of Chef John, at AllRecipes.com

Huellas Reserve Sauvignon Blanc wine bottleSilky styleHuellas Reserve
Sauvignon Blanc
Maule Valley, Chile

The grapes were picked at their optimal degree of ripeness during the third week of February. Half of the grapes were macerated in the press to gently extract aromas from the skins while the remaining bunches were destemmed and pressed immediately to obtain clean musts. All fruit was fermented in stainless steel tanks to preserve the aromatics and freshness in the form of citrus and tropical fruit notes. A large part of the blend was barrel aged for 3 months on the lees, up until bottling, to impart a greater weight and creamy texture on the palate.

Carlos Gatica winemaker headshot“Greenish-yellow with intense citrus aromas such as grapefruit and sweet tropical fruits. The refreshing palate is lively, fruity, and finishes with a smooth creaminess. The perfect companion for seafood, creamy and fatty cheeses, chicken dishes, and pastas with seafood sauces.”

Winemaker: Carlos Gatica
Appellation: Maule Valley, Chile
Varietal Blend:  98% Sauvignon Blanc, 2% Sauvignon Gris
Analysis: 13% alcohol / volume

April Wine Club pairing recipe

Churrasco with Pebre
(Grilled Beef Tenderloin with Chilean Cilantro Sauce)
Churrasco Grilled Beef

PEBRE INGREDIENTS:
• 2/3 cup canned vegetable broth
• ½ cup minced fresh cilantro
• ½ cup minced onion
• ½ cup minced red bell pepper
• ¼ cup white vinegar
• ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon dried oregano
• 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
• ½ teaspoon black pepper
• 4 garlic cloves, minced

PEBRE DIRECTIONS:
• Combine all ingredients, stirring with a whisk until well-blended. Remain sauce can also be stored in airtight container in refrigerator, up to 2 weeks.

INGREDIENTS:
• Cooking spray
• 4 cups sliced onion
• ½ teaspoon sugar
• 1 ½ lbs. center-cut beef tenderloin
• ½ teaspoon salt
• ½ teaspoon garlic powder
• ½ teaspoon dried oregano
• ½ teaspoon black pepper
• ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
• Pebre (Chilean Cilantro Sauce)

DIRECTIONS:
Place a large skillet coated with cooking spray over medium heat until hot. Add sliced onion and sugar; cover and cook 10 minutes or until golden brown, stirring frequently. Keep warm. Prepare broiler.  Cut tenderloin lengthwise with the grain into 6 even steaks. Place 1 steak between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; flatten to an even thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Repeat procedure with remaining steaks. Combine salt and next 4 ingredients (salt through cumin). Rub salt mixture over both sides of steaks. Place steaks on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Broil 2 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Top each steak with onion mixture; drizzle each with 1 tablespoon Pebre. Recipe courtesy of Cooking Light, with Steven Raichlen, award-winning author of Healthy Latin cooking. © Photo by Becky Luigart-Stayner

Huellas Reserve Carmenere wine bottleBold wine Style logoHuellas Reserve
Carmenère
Maule Valley, Chile

Maule Valley is Chile’s largest wine growing region and claims many of the country’s oldest vines that were planted over a century ago. Carmenère is closely associated with the Maule Valley region, which is slightly cooler than its northern counterparts and higher levels of rain in winter months. Influenced by cold nighttime winds from the Andes, the season began with a cold spring, with a few hot spells in summer. Hand picked during the first week of May, the grapes were destemmed without crushing and fermented in stainless steel tanks. Total maceration time was 24-34 days, then racked to barrels, where it completed its fermentation in 3 months. The wine then matured for 12-14 months in French oak barrels.

Carlos Gatica winemaker headshot“Intense carmine red, this Carmenère presents powerful notes of red and black fruit accompanied by the variety’s characteristic spicy notes such as white and black pepper along with notes of vanilla and tobacco. The palate is smooth and expansive with tremendous flavor and a persistent fruity finish. Perfect for celebrating along with braised beef or roast lamb with an herb or cardamom sauce.” –  Carlos Gatica, winemaker

Winemaker: Carlos Gatica
Appellation: Maule Valley, Chile
Varietal Blend:  90% Carmenère, 6% Cabernet Franc, 4% Cabernet Sauvignon
Analysis: 13.8% alcohol / volume; 3.6 pH; 5.2 g/L Total Acidity
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed and approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine

A Day in the Life with Bob

Bob Bolden Omaha WineStyles

Robert (Bob) Bolden at WineStyles in Omaha

Looking into Robert (Bob) Bolden’s typical week at his WineStyles Tasting Station store in Omaha, Nebraska, you may think this man is an embodiment of the Energizer® bunny! But as you dig in you’ll see that’s because being a WineStyles business owner is, well, ENERGIZING!

Of course, Bob does go above and beyond with his typical 5:30am rise time. This businessman fits in a good workout every morning as part of a balanced lifestyle. Bob knows the balancing act of business ownership and one’s health and personal life is important to maintain.

What happens next? He’s off to networking events over coffee and breakfast. Building a business is just one part of the “job”. Building a community is another important aspect of being a business owner. Not only do you want your fellow community members to know who you are and what your business offers, but you also want to know them and how your ongoing relationship can be mutually beneficial.

“The great part about networking on behalf of WineStyles is that nearly everyone drinks wine!” says Bob, enthusiastic about getting out and networking in his community.

Bob behind the counter at WineStyles

Bob behind his “Chocolate Station”  at WineStyles Tasting Station, Omaha

 

Chocolate

Handmade Chocolate Truffles at WineStyles Tasting Station, Omaha

 

WineStyles in Omaha

Bob Bolden’s WineStyles store front in Omaha

When working at his WineStyles Tasting Station store, Bob enjoys the many aspects of putting together a well-rounded wine shop – including tasting new wines and craft beers with local distributors, choosing accessories from catalogs to sell in the store, prepping his gift basket station with goodies, and furthering his own personal wine and craft beer knowledge.

It doesn’t stop there though – Bob manages a staff of about 13 part-time workers, all thirsty for continuing their own education in wine and craft beer. When something new comes in, or Bob gains a bit of new info, he gladly shares his findings with his staff. Education is a huge part of what makes WineStyles customers enjoy their experience with his shop so much. They know that Bob and his staff will point them in the right direction depending on their own personal tastes.

Engaging with his customers is Bob’s favorite part of his business, “just outside of being my own boss, which comes in a strong first place” he affirms. Bob enjoys adding value to his customers’ lives by means of helping them find the perfect wine, craft beer, or gift, yes, but also by way of being a positive community member whom they can rely on.

Through his WineStyles store, Bob finds countless ways to give back to his community. He sponsors wine tastings at various events, holds free-will offerings for national causes, hosts events for charity, and more.

“When you put your mind to it, and you have fellow community members working on the same project, there are so many different ways we can all help our community prosper. This is just another side-benefit of being your own boss – you can decide which causes are important to you and really make a difference in your own community. It’s a beautiful thing to witness.”

Venturing outside his community to wine attractions around the country is yet another side-benefit of being a WineStyles franchisee.

“I love working with like-minded wine-o’s!” Bob jests.

The WineStyles Corporate Team puts on an Annual Franchisee Convention, which is held in a different wine, craft beer, or “foodie”-centric location each year. Bob’s favorite Convention locations so far have been Woodinville, Washington and Willamette Valley in Oregon.

Bob signing the annual Convention poster

Bob signing the annual Convention poster

“Convention gives us the opportunity to meet up with fellow WineStyles business owners, learn from the Corporate Team, and bounce ideas off one another. I always walk away jazzed for my business and excited to implement new ideas in my store.”

Learn more about Bob’s journey at his next Open House, the event is free to attend.

Franchising Open House Event:

Thursday, March 29, 2018
6:00pm

WineStyles – Pacific
1006 S. 74th Plaza
Omaha, NE 68114

Please call Bob at (402) 884-6696 to RSVP.

Hope to see you there!

Cheers,

Bob Bolden,
Area Developer for Nebraska market and Proprietor of WineStyles in Omaha.

 

 

Peterson Winery

March Winery Spotlight

Peterson winery logoJoin us for a Winery Spotlight tasting event, featuring Peterson wines from Sonoma California.

Peterson Vineyard

Peterson Winery has been producing wine in Dry Creek Valley for 30 years and, like most wineries in the Valley, produces Zinfandel as well as other wines. Yet a closer look shows that is where the similarities end.

Fred Peterson and familyOwner Fred Peterson is an iconoclast with an old world winemaking philosophy and a reverence for sustainable farming. The Peterson approach is to capture the essence of vintage and vineyard—a philosophy they call Zero Manipulation—with low tech, yet high touch, to produce wines of a place, wines with soul. The evolution of Peterson wines and winemaking accelerated when Fred’s son Jamie became assistant winemaker in the summer of 2002. In 2006, after moving from the tiny red barn on Lytton Springs to Timber Crest Farms, Jamie was given the overall responsibilities as winemaker.


PETERSON ROOTS

Fred camePeterson winery team to Dry Creek Valley in 1983, working to find and develop world-class vineyard properties. It was an exciting time for Fred, being able to select ideal vineyard locations and then plant the appropriate grape variety and clone for each site. The vineyards Fred developed in Dry Creek Valley (Sonoma County), including on Bradford Mountain, began producing amazing fruit. The next step was a natural one; Fred wanted to make wine from the fruits of his labor (sorry about the pun, it was too good to pass up).

In 1987, all the pieces fell into place for Fred, and he launched Peterson Winery. For nearly twenty years, the winery was located in an old, red barn tucked away in the vineyards off of Lytton Springs Road. It was beautiful place to make wine, but the antique structure began to show its age. In late 2005, Fred seized an opportunity to move into a newer facility on Dry Creek Road, at Timber Crest Farms. This new, more convenient location offers more offices and space, plus a room for visitors to taste the wines.

Peterson wine labelsOver the years, Fred has befriended grape growers who share his goals and values; to grow grapes that reflect a sense of place. The Dry Creek Valley encompasses one of the greatest ranges of microclimates for such a small area in the world, making it possible to grow many grape varieties, with world-class quality. Peterson Winery now makes an average of 8000 cases annually, all in many small lots from the like-minded growers he now calls his friends.

We bring wine country to you!

Peterson red barn Sonoma

Attend our Winery Spotlight, and experience a Sonoma winery!

PETERSON WINERY
Winery Spotlight Tasting
SONOMA, CALIFORNIA

Please join us as we Taste, Learn and Enjoy®
Limited Seating Available

Power Couple = Wine Couple

Allan and Gina Graham

Allan and Gina Graham, proprietors of WineStyles in Johnston, IA

The Graham’s both come from corporate backgrounds – Allan in IT and Gina in Accounting. They had always appreciated wine, learning about the agriculture behind it (both having grown up on Iowa farms), learning about different varietals and regions, and developing their palates. Owning a boutique wine shop by day, wine bar by night hadn’t occurred to them.

As wine connoisseurs, they had frequented many different wine shops locally, but the couple was first exposed to WineStyles as customers of the West Des Moines, Iowa location. The concept really resonated with them and helped in their growing appreciation and knowledge of wine.

“I had always warded off drinking Chardonnay until I learned how it can range from lighter and silkier to richer and more buttery in flavor through experiencing different styles of the grape”, mentioned Gina. (For the record, she prefers SILKY style of Chardonnay.)

They were hooked and quickly became Wine Club members, participating in the many wine tastings and education events  available at the West Des Moines WineStyles store.

All of these experiences led Allan and Gina to opening their own WineStyles store in January of 2010. The couple continued working their corporate jobs for three years before deciding that Allan would focus 100% of his time on their WineStyles store.

This decision has helped them to grow their store even further, and even branch out to having a role in area development on behalf of the franchise. Gina continues to work at her corporate job full-time, but is an active partner in the store.

Johnston, Iowa WineStyles Store

Johnston, Iowa WineStyles Store

Today, Allan and Gina continue to enjoy learning about wine and craft beer, and love having the frequent opportunity to share that knowledge with others, whether during an individual retail experience or through one of their portfolio tastings or education classes.

“Owning our WineStyles store has provided us with the opportunity to meet so many new people and friends, including other industry professionals, our fellow WineStyles store owners, and our customers.”
Johnston, Iowa WineStyles Store

Wine bar at Johnston, Iowa WineStyles Store

WineStyles is more than just wine on the shelves – it’s about building a community, a true “Clubhouse” experience. Allan and Gina have a few touching stories of community development due to their involvement with WineStyles:

Expanding their customers’ palates can be very interesting to watch. “We had customer who was ‘nothing but Chardonnay’.   He ended up joining our Wine Club, and over time, he evolved into a ‘big red’ wine drinker” noted Allan.

“Once, a couple that had been dating for a while, joined our Wine Club and regularly frequented the Friday night tastings. When he was ready to propose, he chose our store because this was a favorite date night and they enjoyed the store and our company” added Gina. “Amazingly, they also decided to hold the actual wedding at our store, one year later, on December 23, 2017.  What a blessing to be part of their new lives together!”

As a valued member of the Johnston community, Allan was also elected to the Board of Directors of the Johnston Chamber of Commerce and served as President in 2016.

“It has been fun to see the many friendships form among our customers over the years and the small-world connections when they engage in conversation”, remarked Allan.

Learn more about Allan and Gina’s journey at the Open House on Wednesday, February 28th at 6:00pm. Discover the world of franchising and learn about WineStyles business opportunities in Iowa. The event is free to attend. Please call to RSVP.

WineStyles Open House Event:

Monday, March 5, 2018
6:00pm

WineStyles at Iowa River Landing
920 East 2nd Avenue, Suite 115
Coralville, Iowa 52241

Phone Allan to RSVP: 515-334-9463

Hope to see you on March 5th!

Cheers,

Allan and Gina Graham,
Area Developers for Iowa market and Proprietors of WineStyles in Johnston.