My Latest in Wine Business Monthly
Rhône Rangers Ride to New Regions
by L.M. Archer
Paso Robles, Calif. – In the 1980’s, an band of winemakers, including Randall Grahm of Bonny Doon Vineyard, created the Rhône Rangers, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting Rhône-style wines.
Planting What They Believed In
“The Rhône Rangers is a unique organization; we represent an idea, not a place, or a single variety, and we are a national organization,” says Craig Camp, Rhône Rangers Board President, and General Manager of Troon Vineyard in Oregon’s Applegate Valley. “Many pioneers built the Rhône Rangers. and planted these classic Southern French varieties long before the market demanded them. They planted what they believed in.”
Wines produced must include a minimum of 75% of at least one of 22 approved Rhône grape varieties, such as Grenache, Syrah, and Mouvèdre. The group showcases their wines at annual events, most notably International Grenache Day, which falls on September 15th this year.
Currently, Rhône Ranger members span from California, Oregon and Washington, to Arizona, Texas, Michigan, and Virginia. A scan of the other board members underscores its prominence: Vice President Larry Schaffer of Tercero, Secretary Stacy Vogel of Plata Wine Partners, Treasurer Sandy R. Throop, CPA, and Past President Tony Quealy of Thacher Winery.
Further directors include Jason Haas of Tablas Creek Vineyard, Pam Bowker of Caliza Winery, Maggie Tillman of Alta Colina, Kristin Bryden of Zaca Mesa, Adrienne Rule of Rideau Vineyard, Hilary Cline of Cline Family Cellars, and Shannon Horton of Horton Vineyards.
More than just an idea, it also proves a force for education, outreach, and advocacy. “The Rhône Rangers continues to be the main advocacy group for educating consumers, and the trade, about domestically-produced Rhône varieties here in the US,” says Vice President Larry Schaffer. “Our working board of directors continues to position the organization for continued growth.”
Aside from expanding their annual International Grenache Day Celebration, the Rhône Rangers recently introduced a series of successful webinars showcasing varieties and regions, such as those of Santa Barbara County and Oregon.
Additional innovations include more live events in Oregon, Northern California, and Paso Robles throughout 2023, and beyond. Such events also help fund scholarships, another core mission of the Rhône Rangers. READ MORE HERE.
I’m pleased to share my latest article in Wine Business Monthly on the Rhône Rangers’ new board of directors and their expanded national education, outreach and advocacy programs.