January Amista Friends of the Month Newsletter!

It's a new year and what a better way to kick it off than with a big thank you to our Wine Club Family!  We would like to take the time to honor our Wine Club members as each and every one continue to stay passionate about our wines.  We love to hear their stories of sharing with friends and family.  

These are Club Members who we have special relationships with, and who visit us from near and far!  Once a month we feature Amista Friends of the Month in our monthly newsletter.  In accepting this invitation, they receive additional benefits... such as extra savings on wine, food pairings, and other treats during the month.  We do this every month, and reach out to Club Members asking if they would like to participate.  Keep an eye out in your inbox to see if you have been nominated by our Wine Club Coordinator!

For the month of January, we are featuring Susan and Eric who live in Nevada and has been visiting us since 2017! 
We appreciate her continued passion and loyalty to our wines. Below is their story!

Becoming a Member:

My husband, Eric, and I had been coming to the Healdsburg area for years to run in the Healdsburg Half-Marathon.  It so happens the course runs right by Amista Vineyards, prompting us to come try on one of those visits.  Whenever we came, we were greeted warmly by staff and we were impressed with all the wines, and mostly with the winery's flagship, Gene's Block Zinfandel.  While I have been a fan of all Gene's Block vintages, the 2018 is tasting especially good!  We became members in 2017 after officially signing the barrel in the tasting room. 

Favorite memories here are many: 

Our first stomping event of 2018 was a hoot and we loved watching the participants while enjoying the wines with our friends--we vowed we would participate as a team in the future.  Another favorite was the August dinner in the vines where we had the opportunity to chat briefly with Vicky and Mike, as well as Ashley, the winemaker, and Amista's great staff!  In times of COVID-19, another highlight was the virtual tastings with our friends at our home in Henderson, Nevada.  

Favorite Wine and Food Pairing:

To be frank, I consider Gene's Block to be a Dr. Seuss wine (I drink it in the house, I'll drink it with a mouse, I'll drink it here and everywhere,...) as it pairs with most foods.  During the winter holiday season, we enjoy drinking our Sparkling wines, particularly the Syrah, with our cheese ball and crackers.  The cheese ball recipe came from my mother-in-law, Grace Johnson.

Grace Johnson's Cheese Ball Recipe:

16 oz. cheddar cheese (grated)
16 oz. cream cheese (softened)
1 small or 1/2 medium-sized onion (diced finely)
1/2 green pepper (diced finely)
2 oz. pimentos (diced)
1 tsp. Worseshire
1 tsp. Lemon Juice
1 tsp. Garlic Salt
Chopped Pecans for coverage

Mix all ingredients thoroughly except pecans in a large bowl.  Using hands works best.  Once thoroughly mixed, roll into two balls.  After balls are formed, roll each ball onto chopped pecans, covering each ball.  Cover with cellophane and refrigerate at least 2 hours.  Can be made days ahead of time. 

The cheese ball can be presented different ways depending upon the season.  In October, I crunched up cheese Pringles (with a rolling pin) for an orange coating and rolled the cheese ball in it.  After refrigeration, I used string to indent it to look like a pumpkin.  The green pepper stem was placed at the top.                                                                                                                                        
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Amista Vineyards
3320 Dry Creek Road
Healdsburg, CA 95448

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