Meritage Alliance
What's happening
  • 2022 trademark fees are due!
  • Please note mailing address is now 303 Alderbrook Dr., Santa Rosa, CA  95405
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New Members
  • Gideon Owen Winery
  • Dobbins Creek Vineyards
  • Chateau De Reve
  • Winery Stef Corp.
  • Perissos Vineyard & Winery
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25 Years of Meritage

Host A Blending Party

In the wine industry, winemakers are the rock stars. But there's a way you and your friends can join the band - have a blending party! It's fun, and definitely brings out your creative juices (pardon the pun). Plus, it's not that hard to put together.

You'll need to gather up or purchase a few supplies, get things organized in advance of your guests' arrival, and once everyone shows up, just join in the merriment.

You can purchase wine blending kits online that have everything you need (check out the latest offerings by typing in "wine blending kits" on your favorite search engine), or you can rummage through your own kitchen and improvise.

You'll need the following:

  • Wine! Choose several different varietals. They don't have to be from the same producer, but try to find wines that have 90% to 100% of the varietal specified on the label (Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, etc.).
  • Thiefs! Very few of us have access to the elegant glass instruments that winemakers use to "thief" wine from a barrel, but poultry basters or plastic straws can serve the same purpose. One per person - or one per varietal.
  • Beakers! Glass beakers or measuring cups are best (it's easier to read the measurements), but plastic ones will do in a pinch. One per person or one per varietal.
  • Glasses! As many as you can find. You will need at least one for each varietal and for each amateur winemaker, plus a couple extra for those who want to concoct a couple of blends.
  • Placemats! Vinyl or plastic are preferred. Blending can get messy and you need to be able to sponge up your dribbles.
  • Index Cards and Pencils! At least one card and pencil for each guest, plus one card to identify each varietal.
  • Dump Buckets! Necessary for "responsible" tasting.
  • Bottles! Several empty bottles for the final blends. Be sure to run them through the dishwasher first!

To set up the party, organize a blending station for each guest or team of guests.
This includes a placemat, wineglass(es), measuring cup, wine thief and an index card and pencil.

Pour each wine varietal into a beverage glass - we recommend a standard glass that doesn't have a stem. Guests will be thiefing from the glass and wineglasses won't be as steady as a regular flat-bottomed glass. Print the name of each varietal on an index card and place the correct glass on each card.

Guests will thief wine into a measuring cup, keeping track of the amount of each varietal that they are adding to their own special blend. This is their "recipe." Once everyone has created their final blend, have each person take their recipe and make an identical blend for the group to taste using the sanitized bottles.

Swirl, sniff and sip - vote on the top three and give the winners a bottle of Meritage to honor their winemaking talents. If you're lucky, they'll open them up and share!