credit union for kids

Credit Unions For Kids wine auction raises over $1 million for children’s miracle network hospitals


Organizers of the tenth annual California and Nevada Credit Unions for Kids Wine Auction have announced that more than $1 million was raised for the eleven Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in California and Nevada.  Hearthstone has been blessed to be part of this event over the last few years and we look forward to further participation. It is a wonderful event.

The sold out event, which took place Friday, February 20th, at the Laguna Cliffs Marriott Resort & Spa in Dana Point, California, drew over 425 attendees and was supported by more than 80 credit unions, business partners and hospitals.

The annual wine auction continues to be one of the premier fundraising events for Children’s

Miracle Network Hospitals’, as more than $3.6 million has now been raised by the Credit Unions for Kids Wine Auction since 2006.

“Through the incredible efforts and generosity of our sponsors, donors, and volunteers, we have set a new milestone of support for the eleven Children’s Hospitals in California and Nevada,” said Jeff York, event chairman and president and CEO of CoastHills Credit Union.  “Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals is a special cause for credit unions and we are pleased to be giving back to this great organization and the children of our community.”

10 things to consider before starting a vineyard by Audrey J. Brown

10 Things to Consider Before Starting a Vineyard - Photo by Amanda Slater/Flickr ( #vineyard #grapes

Planting picturesque grapevines on your farm is a romantic notion. Established vines strategically placed along a residence can add a rustic beauty to the landscape, as well as provide fruit for eating, juicing and winemaking. Although the temperate regions of the West Coast are known for their vineyards, it’s possible to grow grapes on hobby farms across the country, though some climates may need a bit more effort than others.

Like many projects, the more research you do and time you spend before you break ground, the more likely you are to have a successful experience. If you’re considering starting a vineyard on your property, here are some things to think about before you start planting.

1. Your Goals

Do you want wine, jelly, table grapes or bird food? The clearer the vision you have for what you want to do with your vineyard, the easier it will be for you to make decisions, including what types of grapes and how many to grow.

2. Your Growing Season

Knowing the length of a typical growing season in your area may affect your vine choices. Valiant grapes, for example, grow like weeds in our northern climate, but they have a very distinctive flavor: perfect for jelly or juice, but unsuitable for wine. You’ll need to balance plant growth rates with your goals when selecting the right cultivars for your farm.

3. Your Land

Vines like warm summer sun and benefit from a slope for good drainage. You’ll want to plant vines on western-exposed, gently sloping terrain with lots of sun from the south and west. Perform a percolation test [LINK:] on your property if you have doubts about the sufficiency of your land’s drainage.

4. Vineyard Orientation

Orient your vineyard to maximize sun exposure. This may be north-south or east-west, depending on your location. You’ll need to take obstacles that block sunlight, such as tall trees or a large barn, into account.

5. Soil Quality

Soil pH between 6.0 and 6.5 is a good benchmark for happy vines. Test your soil before planting so you are aware of what you’re working with and amend appropriately. You can also select cultivars that prefer your native soil type.

6. Pests

Deer can do significant damage to your growing vines, so fencing (between 6 and 8 feet tall) is important to protect your vines as much as possible. Birds also love to pick at vines; consider using netting or other deterrents to keep them at bay.

7. Disease

Grape vines are susceptible to mildew and other fungal diseases. Plan ahead of time whether you’ll maintain your vines organically or use commercial treatments. Research what diseases grapes are susceptible to in your area, and select hardy cultivars resistant to those particular problems.

8. Time

Use caution not to get overly ambitious and take on more than you can comfortably manage. Start small and grow the size of your vineyard as your time and ability affords.

9. Tools

If you’re beginning from bare ground, plan the layout of your vineyard, taking into consideration irrigation and fencing, and determine what tools you might need to get the job done: truck, tractor, post-hole digger, tiller, mower … the list goes on. The truck will come in handy when hauling the fencing. If you have to rent these items, put aside some extra money.

10. Books

There are so many sources for information these days at our fingertips. Take the opportunity to take advantage of them as time permits. The Backyard Vintner: An Enthusiast’s Guide to Growing Grapes and Making Wine at Home (Crestline Books, 2011) by Jim Law is an easy read and very informative. Grape Grower’s Handbook (Apex Publishers, 2013) by Ted Goldammer is another book that makes quick work of complicated vineyard systems. Don’t forget of the abundant information available from university programs, trade associations, extension offices and the growers themselves. You may be surprised at how much information you can quickly discern from competent farmers who share your same passion.

Get more help growing and using grapes:

About the Author: Audrey J. Brown lives with her husband on a small hobby farm in Sheridan, Wyo. Her hobbies include raising chickens, gardening and cheese making, and she also loves the peaceful, back-to-your-roots lifestyle of Wyoming.

Found on Hobby Farms:

Valentine’s Day food & wine!

Come by Hearthstone on Saturday February 14th from 12-4 and enjoy a vertical tasting of Pinot Noir alongside delightful desserts. $20 includes your wine tasting and food pairing ($10/club member). From your $20 tasting fee, $10 will be credited toward a bottle purchase. With any questions just call the tasting room.

Have you checked out Eve’s Wine 101?

In the last few weeks we have had the privilege of getting in touch with Eve Bushman, a famed wine reviewer in the world of online blogging as well as columnist for The SCV Beacon (see link for our article). She has been blessing the wine world with graceful education for those asking questions about wine for the first time (see EveWine101). We’ve all been there and I hope the next generation finds Eve to help them through. This week she sampled 3 of our new Releases and made her tasting notes available to us to view. I have to agree with her that our wine quality is up there and the flavors and aromas she picked out in the wines were fun to hunt for. And so, here are her notes on the 2012 Pinot Noir, 2010 Lodestone, and 2010 Fireside Claret.

2012 Pinot Noir

Paso Robles

14.5% alcohol

90 Eve pts.

Aroma – Crushed strawberries, red cherry, something floral, whiffs of vanilla and coconut extract, a tickle of white pepper and a hint of cloves.

Flavor – Juicy red fruit, some of that white pepper carried through to the palate, tart cherries, lingering dry finish.

2010 Fireside Claret

Paso Robles

50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Cabernet Franc and 5% Merlot

14.2% alcohol

89 Eve pts.

Aroma – Dark dried cherries, pomegranate, sliced mushrooms, clove, rich soft suede, vanilla bean, light toasted oak and a muddy garden path. All very pleasant and worth a revisit with each sip.

Flavor – A little tight upon first taste, maybe decant first or swirl a bit as I did. Then you can get flavors of plum, black cherry, blackberry, tobacco leaves and a nice not-too-dry dust on the finish.

2010 Lodestone

Paso Robles

52% Syrah, 43% Grenache, and 5% Mourvedre

14.7% alcohol

90 Eve pts.

Aroma – Blackberry jam, dried black currants, burst of plums, a bit of cigar, oak, black olive, leather, black pepper, toast…all encircled by the memory of silky rose petals.

Flavor – Black fruit jam on toast, very dark chocolate, chewy, figs, walnut and a slight burn on the finish that I found wholly gratifying.

January wine shipment!

Happy New Year! We hope you are as excited about this Winter wine shipment as we are.  The wines that were selected are tasting exceptional, Enjoy!
A few IMPORTANT DATES: JANUARY 20th is the last day to update any information to your wine club account. JANUARY 22nd is when your credit card will be charged.  JANUARY 27th is when your wine will be shipped or the first day you can pick up your wine.
Whats in this shipment

3-bottle Mixed      $75.00 + tax and shipping

-          2011 Mourvedre (Paul only makes a straight Mourvedre when the grapes are exceptional)

-          2010 Cabernet Sauvignon

-          2013 Roussanne



3-Bottle Red Only   $75.00 + tax and shipping

-          2010 Cabernet Sauvignon

-          2010 Sangiovese

-          2011 Mourvedre (Hearthstone’s 3rd straight Mourvedre)


***Remember if you want to add any additional wines to you wine club shipment you will receive an additional 5% discount off of the added wines and you will NOT be charged any additional shipping!

Upcoming Events
Saturday February 14th 1:00 – 3:00 a Cheese and Chocolate and Wine Pairing $20 pp $10 wc.
Vintage Paso (Zin Festival) is March 20th to the 22nd Hearthstone will be pairing appetizers and pouring new wines along with a Barrel sample.
March Wine Club Pick up Parties March 27th and 28th!!!
If you have any questions or to RSVP to an event call 805.238.2544 or or Renee

Bird invasion!

For the first time in Hearthstone history on Vineyard drive the Varied Thrush has made its home in our parking lot. We’ve spotted one, then two, now an army of these beautiful and melodious birds popping in and out over the last two months. We’re guessing they will move on when the Spring comes. So, all you avid bird watchers, bring your binoculars or just a bag of seed and come enjoy these little treasures while sipping wine out on the patio. This morning we counted 17 in one space.

2009 Fireside Claret ~ 15% off!

Thank you Paul for your holiday spirit. As a Merry Christmas to you and yours we are extending the sale on our 2009 Fireside Claret. Come in this weekend or until the 31st and receive 15% off of the Claret. If you are already a wine club member, we will stack this discount on top of yours. Cheers!

Holiday wine time!

We’ve had lots of holiday orders already. This year’s favorites seem to be the 2011 Primate and the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve. For those of you who are hesitant to come out to the tasting room to get your wine for the holidays you can have it shipped. Until this Monday at noon we are offering $0.01 shipping in California and also out of state if 6 bottles are purchased. Our brand new releases this year that I will be enjoying with my Christmas dinners are the 2010 Lodestone and the 2013 Roussanne. And don’t forget, if you want to save 15% (will be added to the club discount to!) on wine be sure to order our 2009 Fireside Claret. Its our winemaker’s pick for the holiday and he has asked us to put it on special. Contact the tasting room!

$.01 shipping!

Wine always makes a great gift during the holidays, now through December 15thship wine for one cent.
Hurry and place your wine order for the holidays. For the next two weeks we will be offering one penny shipping of your wine order within the state of California. If you don’t live in California then don’t worry. If you buy 6 bottles or more we will ship you that wine for 1¢. Be sure to place your order by 12:00 p.m. December 15th.
If you don’t see the wine you’re looking for don’t hesitate to call the tasting room.
2009 Mourvedre
2009 Fireside Claret (15% off)
2009 Profundo (almost sold out)
2010 Pearl Delight (the sweeter side)
2010 Grenache
2010 Zinfandel
2010 Pioneer
2010 Pinot Noir
2010 Syrah
2010 Sangiovese
2010 Lodestone
2010 Cabernet Sauvignon
2010 Cabernet Franc
2010 Fireside Claret
2010 Bruno Di Paso (intended for bottle aging)
2011 Primate
2010 Pearl
2012 Roussanne
2013 Rose

Thank you friends!

Today is black Friday and tomorrow is small business Saturday. As you make your holiday gift selections don’t forget the unique, intriguing, and always sustainable products vinted at Hearthstone and sold in the tasting room. Come by the tasting room today and tomorrow to receive the following discounts as you select our hand-crafted wine.

3 bottles- receive 20% off

6 bottles- receive 25% off

12 bottles-receive 30% off

Are you already a wine club member? Please receive an additional 20% off of your wine club discount when you purchase 3 bottles or more today.