Sacramento became the temporary heart of the domestic wine industry last week as a record 13,400 people attended the Unified Wine & Grape Symposium.
The annual event takes over the Sacramento Convention Center and Hyatt Regency, with seminars and a trade show featuring the latest in winemaking technology, farming equipment and much more.
That wasn't the only record at Unified. The 2012 grape crop set a high for California with an estimated 3.89 million tons crushed up from 3.34 million tons crushed in 2011. Domestic wine shipments rose to 363 million cases, a 2 percent increase over 2011.
The crop report was good news for California's wine industry, which had endured two years of lower-than-average crush totals due to cool weather and faced possibile supply shortages.
Also in shortage last week: tables at downtown restaurants. Business at many eateries can double during Unified. When we caught up Jan. 30 with Adam Pechal of Tuli Bistro and Restaurant Thir13en, this chef featured on ABC's "The Taste" was preparing for a banquet of 350.
The next big wine event coming to town is the California State Commercial Wine Competition in June. More than 60 judges from around the country will descend on Cal Expo to consider wines from more than 500 producers.
As previously reported by The Bee's Cathie Anderson, two new chief judges will oversee the competition: Mike Dunne, the Bee's former food and wine editor whose writings still appear in this paper; and Rick Kushman, another former Bee staffer who is a certified wine educator and found his second calling as a consultant and marketer in the wine industry.
Speaking of Kushman, this chatterbox about wine will host a food-and-wine tasting on Thursday at 33rd St. Bistro (3301 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento). He'll talk and taste everyone through pinot noir, cabernet sauvignon and chardonnay.
Appetizers will also be available for munching. $35 per person. Information: (916) 455-2233.
© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.
Read more articles by Chris Macias
What You Should Know About Comments on Sacbee.com
Sacbee.com is happy to provide a forum for reader interaction, discussion, feedback and reaction to our stories. However, we reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments or ban users who can't play nice. (See our full terms of service here.)
Here are some rules of the road:
Keep your comments civil. Don't insult one another or the subjects of our articles. If you think a comment violates our guidelines click the "Report Abuse" link to notify the moderators. Responding to the comment will only encourage bad behavior.
Don't use profanities, vulgarities or hate speech. This is a general interest news site. Sometimes, there are children present. Don't say anything in a way you wouldn't want your own child to hear.
Do not attack other users; focus your comments on issues, not individuals.
Stay on topic. Only post comments relevant to the article at hand.
Do not copy and paste outside material into the comment box.
Don't repeat the same comment over and over. We heard you the first time.
Do not use the commenting system for advertising. That's spam and it isn't allowed.
Don't use all capital letters. That's akin to yelling and not appreciated by the audience.
Don't flag other users' comments just because you don't agree with their point of view. Please only flag comments that violate these guidelines.
You should also know that The Sacramento Bee does not screen comments before they are posted. You are more likely to see inappropriate comments before our staff does, so we ask that you click the "Report Abuse" link to submit those comments for moderator review. You also may notify us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us the profile name of the user who made the comment. Remember, comment moderation is subjective. You may find some material objectionable that we won't and vice versa.
If you submit a comment, the user name of your account will appear along with it. Users cannot remove their own comments once they have submitted them.