Wine

Hosts

HOST YEAR
2020|2021
Mar 18, 2021
Peter Thompson
Owner, Andrew Geoffrey Vineyards, Diamond Mountain, Napa Valley, CA

Since visiting the Napa Valley as a college student in 1973, Peter Thompson set his sights on producing world class Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. In 1995, after a two and one-half year search for the ultimate mountain vineyard site, Peter selected the property at 2000 feet atop Diamond Mountain. Having purchased undeveloped land with unlimited potential, Peter assembled a team consisting of viticulture and enology specialists to plan and execute planting of a state of the art vineyard. 13 acres were carved out and planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The vineyard was christened Andrew Geoffrey Vineyards after Peter’s two sons, Andrew and Geoffrey, and currently enjoys a reputation for producing mountainside grapes and Cabernet Sauvignon wine of unprecedented quality.
Mar 20, 2021
Sabrine Rodems
Winemaker, Wrath Wines, Soledad, CA
Wrath wines have received notable acclaim from Robert Parker, Wine Spectator and other respected wine reviewers, due to Sabrine’s winemaking talent. Back in June 2004, after graduating from UC Davis, Sabrine joined San Saba Vineyard. She successfully guided the winery through its transition from San Saba to Wrath when current owner, Michael Thomas, bought the winery in 2007. Wrath wines are made with an enormous amount of care and a large experimental streak. It’s that spirit of experimentation that makes these wines exciting. Join Sabrine on this voyage down the Seine, visiting the beautiful historic villages and seaports that inspired Monet, Cezanne and Renoir.
Mar 22, 2021
Arthur White
President and Winemaker of Arthur Earl Winery and Santa Ynez Wine Corp.
TBA
Mar 23, 2021
John & Ann Martini
Owners of Anthony Road Wine Company
The Anthony Road Wine Company story began in April of 1973 with the planting of the first vines that established our vineyards. Having moved to the Finger Lakes from Baltimore early in the year, Ann and John Martini took a leap of faith and became grape growers at the suggestion of a friend. The first vines were French-American hybrid vines planted specifically for the Taylor Wine Company. Over the year, the family and the vineyard grew to include four children (Peter, Sarah, Maeve and Elizabeth) and 30 acres of vines. A true family affair, the four children and their spouses are integral parts of the day to day business. The 12 grandchildren help or hinder whenever they can. Today the Anthony Road Wine Company processes fruit from 90 acres of grapes between two vineyard sites. Our commitment to the land, vineyards and quality wines result in an experience we are proud to share with you. Join John and Ann Martini on this wine cruise adventure along the beautiful Rhine River.
Mar 25, 2021
Paul & Merrill Bonarrigo
Owners, Messina Hof Winery & Resort, Bryan, TX

Messina Hof is the most awarded and renowned Texas wine in national and international competitions. In a community steeped in tradition, Messina Hof Winery & Resort holds its own with a 200-year history of award-winning wines. Although the winery itself was officially established when with the first vintage release in 1983, the rich wine heritage of Winemaker Paul Bonarrigo dates back six generations to Messina, Sicily. Merrill Bonarrigo’s family originates from Hof, Germany. Together they have pioneered the Texas wine industry in creating premium wines of distinction and a landmark wine country destination.
Mar 25, 2021
Ed & Adam Sbragia
Owners and Winemakers, Sbragia Vineyards – Geyserville, CA

Ed Sbragia and his son, Adam, are third and fourth generation winemakers in California’s prestigious Dry Creek Valley. Following 32 years as Winemaster at Beringer Vineyards in the Napa Valley, Ed returned home in 2001 to establish Sbragia Family Vineyards. The small, family-owned winery makes individual lots of wine from grapes grown in select blocks of their favourite vineyards. Ed is the only winemaker to receive The Wine Spectator ‘Wine of the Year’ for both a red wine and a white wine. After stints at Beringer, Souverain and St. Clement wineries, Adam joined his father at Sbragia Family Vineyards, where they have been making wine side by side for ten years.
Mar 25, 2021
To be announced.
Mar 27, 2021
Mike & Melissa Owen
Owners
Mike Owen’s lifelong wine journey has taken him from California to France, from the cellar to the judging table, from a wine aficionado to a wine businessman. Mike and his wife Melissa own and operate Crystal Basin Cellars in the Sierra Foothills of the El Dorado appellation. Working with almost 20 different grapes provides an extensive line-up of award-winning wines. Mike has great success with Rhone varieties planted at high elevations. You can literally taste the difference on these flavorful wines. Who doesn’t want to talk about and sip great Syrah and Mourvedre? Mike’s palate, easygoing informative approach, plus his serious, wine-geeky patter all set him up to be an All-Star host for AmaWaterways. Crystal Basin’s winemaking history extends back nearly 40 years. Mike and Melissa lived on the Cote-d Azur for three years in the 90s. This was their playground – let them share their enthusiasm on an unforgettable trip.
Mar 29, 2021
Nancy Bailey & Theresa Heredia
General Manager & Winemaker, Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery, Healdsburg, CA

Born in Syracuse, New York, Nancy Bailey spent a good portion of her school years overseas in England. Her interest in food and wine was sparked by family travels abroad. After attending Hamilton College where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in government and The Fletcher School at Tufts University earning a Master of Arts degree in international relations, Nancy ventured to California where she discovered a true passion for wine country living. She lent her many marketing talents to well-known brands as Chalk Hill Estate Vineyards & Winery, Champagne Perrier Jouët, and Kendall-Jackson. Her creativity and communication acumen placed her in high demand when she went on to work as a freelance marketing consultant for a number of Sonoma County wineries. Before accepting her current role at Gary Farrell in 2011, Nancy was General Manager of Wine Creek LLC (Quivira Vineyards & Winery, La Follette Wines and Torbreck Vintners) for 4 years.

Theresa Heredia joined Gary Farrell Winery team as winemaker in 2012. She earned a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, before becoming a Ph.D candidate in chemistry with an emphasis in enology at UC Davis. She left the program to follow her calling as a hands-on winemaker. Coming off a long stint as winemaker at Freestone Vineyards in Sonoma County, Heredia brings considerable experience working with cool-climate Pinot Noir and Chardonnay and small-lot, single-vineyard wines. During her tenure at Freestone, Heredia’s Pinot Noir and Chardonnay brought the Joseph Phelps-owned winery significant critical acclaim. In early 2012 she was named “Winemaker to Watch” by the San Francisco Chronicle, reflecting her interest in wines that offer a pure expression of their vineyard site and her willingness to experiment with different winemaking techniques.

Mar 30, 2021
Rhonda Wood
Owner & Winemaker, Wood Family Vineyards, Livermore, CA
Wood Family Vineyards is a family run winery located in the eastern foothills of Livermore Valley specializing in limited production handcrafted wines. Rhonda started making wine in 1996 – after they purchased the Merlot vineyard where she and Michael built their home. Together, their passion for wine and belief that winemaking begins in the vineyard led them to Livermore Valley. They are tireless champions about the quality of Livermore Valley soils and their commitment to Valley grown grapes.
Apr 1, 2021
Family owned Robert Young Estate Winery, Alexander Valley, CA.
Family owned and operated
Robert Young’s success is built on generosity and connecting with people, whether that be family, friends, employees, colleagues, or guests visiting the ranch. Fred Young and his siblings founded Robert Young Winery in 1997 to continue the family tradition of excellence and hospitality. Today, visitors to our Geyserville winery in Alexander Valley are welcomed as members of the extended family and invited to experience the beauty of the vineyard ranch and the wines inspired by Robert Young. Join members of the family on this magical wine cruise through Bordeaux
Apr 1, 2021
To be announced.
Apr 1, 2021
To be announced.
Apr 1, 2021
To be announced.
Apr 3, 2021
To be announced.
Apr 6, 2021
Regional Wine Expert
To Be Announced
Immerse yourself in the many flavors of Europe on one of AmaWaterways unique Wine Cruises, which let you add a unique, epicurean dimension to one of our European itineraries. Like our standard river cruises, guests have the opportunity to join tours that highlight the famous sights in each port of call. These special itineraries, however, offer guests a perfect blend of wine-related experiences and excursions in grand capitals and charming towns. You’ll taste local cuisine, discover how wine is made and, of course, partake in tastings — all at no additional cost. Whether you have a seasoned appreciation for fine wine, or simply indulge in a sip here and there, this is a wonderful way to uncork the traditions of the local culture and learn about the region you’re visiting.
Apr 6, 2021
To be announced.
Apr 8, 2021
Glenn Hugo
Estate Director, Br Cohn Winery Sonoma, CA
Debra Eagle has been sharing wine with friends throughout the world since 1994 when she became the international sales manager for Kenwood Vineyards. Over the course of her career, she has had the pleasure and privilege of working with some of the industry’s greatest luminaries, including Robert and Margrit Mondavi and Bill Harlan. She was the Director of Marketing for the Robert Mondavi Winery between 1997 and 2001, and she launched Bill Harlan’s winery BOND in 2004. Debra likes to say she has sold wine from $3 to $300, and she enjoys all of it! Debra and her husband planted a 1-1/2 acre vineyard to Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot 12 years ago at home. She joined BR Cohn Winery in July 2015 as the Estate Director when Vintage Wine Estates purchased the winery and is thrilled to be working at this gorgeous, peaceful estate only 6 miles up the road from her home. She has been especially happy to discover the wonderful quality and pedigree of the wines and olive oils produced by the estate over the decades, olive oil being a completely new culinary product for her to learn about. Both the wines and the olive oils and vinegars will be showcased on the cruise.
Apr 8, 2021
Doug Margerum
Owner/Director of Winemaking, Margerum Wine Company, Santa Barbara, CA

Doug started his food and wine explorations at a young age while traveling with his parents in France. His passion for food and wine was enhanced as he worked in restaurants as a cook and server throughout his high school and college years. Coinciding with his graduation from UCSB in 1981, his family purchased WINE CASK – which quickly expanded to include a simple bistro adjacent to wine store. In 1994, the WINE CASK became one of 74 restaurants in the world to earn the Wine Spectator Grand Award. Doug sold the WINE CASK in 2007 after deciding to devote all of his energies to wine making. Margerum Wine Company began in 2001. His philosophy is to return to wine making in its previous form of production – handcrafted and personal. Doug reassumed ownership in WINE CASK in 2009.
Apr 8, 2021
Paul Wagner
Wine Educator, Lecturer, Author

Paul Wagner has been a college instructor in Napa Valley for the past seventeen years, is a regular columnist for wine publications, and serves as the president of Balzac Communications and Marketing. He is also a highly regarded guest lecturer at universities throughout the world on wine and wine-related business, communications and marketing. He co-authored Wine Marketing & Sales: Success Strategies for a Saturated Market and was honored in 2009 with a “Life Dedicated to Wine” award at the Feria Nacional del Vino in Spain.
Apr 14, 2021
Sonoma County Grape Growers Foundation
Santa Rosa, CA

  • Sarah Quider, Executive Winemaker, Ferrari-Carano Vineyards
  • Steve Dutton, Partner & Grape Grower, Dutton Goldfield Vineyards
  • Justin Seidenfeld, Dir. Of Winemaking, Rodney Strong Vineyards
  • Geoff Kruth, Master Sommelier
  • Matanzas Creek Winery and Arrowood Winery
  • Jul 1, 2021
    Dave and Helen Dart
    Owners of d'Art Winery in Lodi, California
    “I believe my winemaking and my art are just different mediums with the same passion.” Explains owner/winemaker Dave Dart. Being involved in every aspect of winemaking, from the harvest to bottling, involves equal portions of creativity and knowledge. It is not surprising that Dave turns to his other art forms to rejuvenate and refresh his mind. Each d’Art label is a creation of Dave’s beautiful art prints can be seen in the tasting room.

    With 13 years of love and hard work, Dave and Helen look forward to sharing our story and our wine with you on this Ama Waterways River Cruise. Through our discussions we will walk through the vineyards, crush and ferment the wine, barrel and blend, and finally bottle and deliver to our club members. We’ll also explore the different styles of wine from d’Arts Lodi wines to the wines of the Rhine River.

    Jul 8, 2021
    Dr. Douglas Garman, PhD
    Jul 8, 2021
    Dr. Richard Becker
    Owners of Becker Vineyards
    Becker Vineyards was founded by Dr. Richard Becker, a physician in San Antonio, and his wife Bunny. Established in 1992, Becker is one of the original four wineries in Fredericksburg and today they are among the best known and highly respected brands in the state of Texas. Becker Vineyards’ wine has been served in the stateliest of settings, including seven times in the White House, the James Beard Foundation in New York, the Texas Governor’s Mansion and many other famous restaurants in Texas and the United States.
    Jul 11, 2021
    Eric Glomski and Sam Pillsbury
    Owners and Winemakers – Page Springs Cellars, Cornville, AZ; Arizona Stronghold, Cottonwood, AZ; Pillsbury Wine Company, Cottonwood, AZ.

    Jul 15, 2021
    To be announced.
    Jul 17, 2021
    Rick Bonitati
    CEO of St. Francis Winery & Vineyards
    Rick Bonitati joined the St. Francis team as Chief Executive Officer in early 2018. With over 30 years of experience in the fine wine business and a focus primarily on Sonoma County wines, Rick’s passion for premium Sonoma County wines is a perfect addition to St. Francis’ leadership team. Rick believes it is imperative to “work hard and have fun doing it.” His strategic approach to business is to empower collaborative leadership and establish clear objectives and tactical action plans for constant improvement and growth. His team approach along with his pursuit of consistent development is perfectly aligned with the driving force behind St. Francis’ dedication to excellence.
    Jul 24, 2021
    Larry & Margie Dino
    Proprietors, Cuda Ridge Wines, Livermore, CA
    Larry and Margie Dino, the proprietors of Cuda Ridge Wines, have a passion for fine wines which led them to the Livermore Valley – a world-class wine region with wine roots dating back to the mid-1800’s. Over the years, they were inspired to learn more about the craft and traditions of making wine and founded Cuda Ridge in 2007 with a vision for producing premium wines. Small lot, handcrafted, Bordeaux style wines that bring out the wonderful terroir of Livermore Valley are their specialty. Since then each vintage has won many prestigious awards including Wine Enthusiast, San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, Orange County Fair, and Sunset International Wine Competition. Unique old-world style wines welcome you in each glass from Cuda Ridge. Join them to explore and learn about the wines and wine regions of the Enchanting Rhine!
    Jul 29, 2021
    Passport to Dry Creek Valley ®
    Healdsburg, CA

  • Debra Mathy, Proprietor, Dutcher Crossing Winery
  • Clay & Carrie Mauritson, Owners & Winemaker, Mauritson Wines
  • Ann & Jack Selfrick, Owners, Cast Wines
  • Bill Smart, Vice President & General Manager, Lambert Bridge Winery
  • Jul 29, 2021
    To be announced.
    Jul 29, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 5, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 5, 2021
    Jason McClain
    Owner & Winemaker for McClain Cellars, CA
    McClain Cellars is a new winery from California founded on family, friends, faith, and freedom. Founded by Jason & Sofia McClain, they harvest and make all of their wine in the Santa Ynez Valley of California. They offer amazing reds, crisp whites, blends and even a port in their current release. After spending over 30 years tasting wines on the other side of the bar, Jason and Sofia decided to throw caution to the wind and start their own winery to follow their dreams. The goal.... to create amazing wines to be shared with my family and friends. With a luxury tasting lounge in Laguna Beach, CA and a winery in Buellton, CA McClain Cellars specializes in unique blends and creations that are constantly earning gold medals and double-gold medals with many scoring between 90 to 96+ points per vintage. This is truly one of the fastest-growing wineries in California. Join them on this wonderful wine cruise through Burgundy and Provence.
    Aug 5, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 8, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 12, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 12, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 12, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 15, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 19, 2021
    To be announced.
    Aug 24, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 2, 2021
    Amelia Ceja
    President, Ceja Vineyards Napa, Ca
    In 1967, Amelia Morán Ceja emigrated to the U.S. to join her father, a farmworker, who toiled for years in California’s vineyards. Today she’s crossing another border, turning wine consumers into wine aficionados with her subtle blend of viticulture, down-home cuisine and a Web-based marketing campaign. Ceja Vineyards was founded by Amelia and her partners in Napa Valley in 1999; she became the first Mexican-American woman ever to be elected president of a winery. The California legislature recognized Amelia as “Woman of the Year” in 2005 for “breaking the glass ceiling in a very competitive business.” Amelia’s commitment to marketing ethics and corporate responsibility has been acknowledged. She received the coveted 2013 Academy of Marketing Science Distinguished Marketer Award. She has been successful in the growth of the Ceja Vineyards brand, using marketing innovation and creativity. In February 2016, Amelia received the 2016 Dolores Huerta Farmworker Justice Award for her and her company’s commitment to promoting the value and fair treatment of farmworkers.
    Nov 2, 2021
    Michael Lewellen
    Managing Partner at Lucas & Lewellen Winery, Solvang, CA
    Coming Soon!
    Nov 4, 2021
    Ryan Levy & Ian Eastveld
    Certified Sommeliers, Wine Educators & Le Cordon Bleu Trained Chefs, The Nice Winery, Houston, TX

    Foodie superduo Ryan Levy and Ian Eastveld of The Nice Winery are Certified Sommeliers, wine educators, and Le Cordon Bleu trained chefs. Their hand crafted, boutique wines are poured in top restaurants and have won gold medals in internationally recognized wine competitions. Two of their wines have received 94 point and 92 point ratings from Wine Enthusiast Magazine and the Beverage Testing Institute, and were selected as Top 100 Cellar Selections. Ryan and Ian built their epicurean pedigree first while studying in Paris, France, then directing culinary education for Viking Ranges, teaching cuisine to thousands of students at Central Market, and operating their restaurant and catering companies, Republic and Nuance. They craft 14 award winning varietal wines in Texas, Argentina, and California’s Napa Valley and Paso Robles regions.
    Nov 4, 2021
    Peter Marks
    Master of Wine, Constellation Brands

    Peter Marks is one of only 24 Masters of Wine residing in the U.S. and was the first American to win the Madame Bollinger Foundation Award for having the highest tasting score on the rigorous MW exam. He has served as Director of Wine at the upscale Draeger’s Supermarkets in the San Francisco area, Chief Wine Merchant for online wine retailer Wine.com, and Senior Vice President of Wine at COPIA, the American Center for Wine, Food & the Arts. Peter is also a member of the Society of Wine Educators, sits on the Board of Directors of the Napa Valley Wine Library and judges many international wine competitions.
    Nov 4, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 4, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 4, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 4, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 4, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 6, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 6, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 8, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 9, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 9, 2021
    Holly Howell
    Journalist & Wine Expert, Finger Lakes, NY

    Holly Howell writes a wine column for the Democrat & Chronicle in Rochester and is a well-respected New York-based authority on the wines of the Finger Lakes region, particularly Rieslings. She spent a year in France studying French food and wine, teaches wine and food pairing classes, and has served as a judge for the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition. She is a Certified Specialist of Wine through the Society of Wine Educators and also writes a popular blog. Holly is currently pursuing her Wine Spirit Education & Trust diploma.
    Nov 11, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 11, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 11, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 11, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 11, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 13, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 13, 2021
    To be announced.
    Nov 16, 2021
    To be announced.
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