the vintner...Mr Chardonney

Their is a vinedresser, and their is a winemaker.  The winemaker is traditionally called a vintner.  I love the following article that speaks of the humble beginnings of a "cellar rat" who studied the trade and craft of winemaking becoming a world renowned "vintner".  I love the nicknames that attached themselves to him after years of refining his wine.  Mr. Chardonnay, the Godfather of wine, the Winemaster.   And I especially love how this article ends..."he enriched the wine world with his outstanding work and is now passing the torch to his son Matt."  Oh, that this could be said of me.  I long to enrich the world with my delicate treatment of marriage.


Here's the article...

I recently had the opportunity to sit down with legendary winemaker Chuck Ortman, “winemaster” at Ortman Family Vineyards. After talking to him for more than two hours about his 40-year career in the wine industry, I think calling him a winemaster is an understatement of his career achievements.

Ortman, whose passion for wine soon overtook his career in graphic arts, began in 1968 as a “cellar rat” (I love that...that's where it always starts as husbands) for legendary winemaker Joe Heitz of Napa Valley’s Heitz Cellars.

During my visit, I was able to taste many of his offerings, including the 2007 chardonnay from Edna Valley.

I can see why Chuck Ortman was nicknamed “Mr. Chardonnay” (my emphasis) in the ’70s as a pioneer of barrel fermentation. It is a balanced chardonnay in true Burgundian style.

I moved next to two 2006 pinot noirs, one from Fiddlestix Vineyard in Sta. Rita Hills, the other from the Willamette Valley in Oregon. They were different but both outstanding. The Fiddlestix pinot had the classic big fruit while the Oregon pinot was earthier and more of a French Burgundy style of pinot.

The last wine I tasted was the 2007 Rhone style blend called Cuveé Eddy; a blend of syrah, grenache, mourvedre and petite syrah, it was excellent.

Chuck Ortman, the Winemaster, Mr. Chardonnay and The Godfather (my emphasis)— a nickname bestowed on him by tasting room staff — has enriched the wine world with his outstanding work and now is passing the torch to his son Matt.


The vintner spouse.  Mr. Chardonnay.  Wouldn't that be a great way to be described as a husband.  "Here is a man that produces a great tasting wife (wine)."  She sparkles.  She glows.  She's smooth.  She's soft.  She's colorful.  She's irresistible.  She leaves you smiling.  She leaves everything around her tasting better.  She leaves you mildly intoxicated.  She tantalizes your taste buds.  She has a brilliant beauty to her smile, a gentleness to her eyes.  She is fine.  She is fine wine.  She is the wife of Mr. Chardonney...the vintner extraordinaire.  She's loved. 


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