Category Archives: Winery

Oso Libre

My husband and I met Chris through another friend. We knew him before we owned a winery ourselves. Roberto and Chris took a trip to our 500 acre ranch, where Chris fell in love with our land. He uses the land for his cows. His cows run on the ranch before they go on to become his famous angus burgers.

His family got the name Oso Libre (which means free bears) from their name… Chris and Linda Behr and one of his sons Jeff Freeland and his wife Elizabeth…with the blend they came up with Oso Libre…pretty cool!

I can personally attest to the quality of the wines. One of my favorites, is the 2014 Volado Viognier, it’s crisp, and dry, yet refreshing. I believe every time I have been over to visit I have to purchase a bottle of it. It goes so well with chicken or fish. Although it is fantastic when paired with a meal, it is good enough to stand alone.

The tasting room is beautifully decorated, and the ambiance is warm and inviting. It is refined elegance! The staff welcomes everyone that comes through the doors.

Our Wonderful Staff and Interns

Ismael Balderas

 

 

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In 2013, the Morelli family brought Ismael (Sam) Balderas on board to help them with their vision of vineyards, winery and orchards after the acquisition of many ranches and prior to owning a winery.  Sam has over 40 years of experience in Winery, Vineyard operations and is a well established Winemaker.  He is recognized as a world acclaimed Burgundian Style wine producer and has received numerous awards from prestigious wine magazines and wine writers.  He has been named BEST Producer of the Best 100 World Producers for several years.  In 2001 Sam was awarded the ONLY 100 points score at a World Wine Competition held in France.

 

 

 

Miguel Uribe

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Miguel joined San Marcos Creek back in 1999 !   There is not a day goes by that you will not find him in the field carrying for the vines and landscaping like his own backyard.  His vast experience and knowledge of both of the vineyard and winery makes him extremely flexible and able to work all aspects of the business.  Miguel brings the slogan “Fine wine beings at the vines …” to a reality !

 

 

 

 

Sunni Mullinax

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2016, the Morelli’s brought Sunni Mullinax to the tasting room and general operations.  She brings a wealth of wine information and has a vast knowledge of marketing, wine club, and events.  (Yes, she is guilty of redesigning our emails and can’t wait to hear your feedback!)   Mentioning Sunni would not be complete without giving a shout out to her husband Dave, her herding dog Buddy and newly acquired rescue cats, Doobie and Dante.  She lives in Paso Robles and is a Cal Poly alum, animal lover, runner, cook, health nut, and wine geek.

Melissa Nisse

Joining the San Marcos Creek family for 2017, Melissa Nisse !  She grew up in Lockwood, California a very small town in southern Monterey county.  She has always felt like I was a big fish in a small pond so shortly after graduating high school she moved to the “big city”.  You guessed it Paso Robles, California where she quickly fell in love with the wine industry.  Melissa lives in the heart of downtown Paso with her hard working husband Sean and her daughter Hazel and loyal pup Ty.   You can see her in the tasting room so come on in enjoy some wine and stay awhile.

 

 

San Marcos Creek Marketing Team (Cal-Poly 2017):

 

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Kaitlin Brennan
I was born and raised in Hershey, Pennsylvania and moved to California at the age of 16 to attend boarding school and subsequently, Cal Poly. I am a fourth year business administration major with a concentration marketing. I have a passion for consumer marketing and have obtained diverse project and work experiences in my classes and through internships. My most recent experience comes from Social Media and Consumer Marketing at MINDBODY, Inc, Sports Marketing and Fan Promotions at Cal Poly Athletics, and a senior project developing a campaign for Facebook and the Department of Homeland Security. In my free time I love to be outside, play sports, travel and spend time with family and friends.  My grandparents are members of the San Marcos Creek Wine Club!

 

 

 

 

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Britney Deacon

I am currently in my fourth year at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo where I am majoring in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing. I’m originally from Los Gatos, California where my family owns a winery in the Santa Cruz Mountains. I worked for my family’s winery all throughout high school and during the summers once I started at Cal Poly. At the winery, I helped plan and run events for both wine club members as well as those that were open to the public. In addition to my work experience at my family’s winery, I spent last summer as a Communications Intern for FIRST 5 Santa Clara County where I gained marketing experience through generating social media content for the company’s multiple social media accounts as well as publishing both internal and external newsletters. In my free time I like to travel, eat good food, and spend time with my family and friends.

 

 

 

 

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Kyle Heuerman

 

I am a senior business student concentrating in Marketing from Pleasant Hill, California . I have sales experience from an internship from Enterprise Rent-A-Car, and through my time spent at Enterprise I learned various techniques to understand the customer. I also worked with management to improve one aspect of the company. I utilized this opportunity to create a new promotional campaign to reach markets that are currently untapped or underutilized. During my free time I enjoy cruising the outdoors on my mountain bike, exploring the central coast and spending time with my family and friends.

 

 

 

 

 

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Skyler Hubler
Hi there! I am a senior Marketing student and am excited to be entering my final quarter at Cal Poly. I am passionate about marketing and advertising and am always looking to expand my knowledge about different industries. I have previously held two advertising agency internships working in the Strategic Planning department, where I gained valuable experience conducting market research and leveraging consumer insights to develop strategic recommendations for clients such as Hyundai, LG, and Wienerschnitzel. I currently work as a Marketing Assistant for Cal Poly Corporation, where I assist with various marketing needs for the campus dining venues as well as the University Store. In my free time I enjoy exploring the outdoors and relaxing with a nice glass of wine.

 

 
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Julia Rowe
I am a fourth year Business Administration student with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. I have experience working in the hospitality industry for two summers as a front desk receptionist for Redac Gateway Hotel in Torrance, California. This is a small hotel that is going through a change of ownership and renovations. I have gained tremendous knowledge of the process of the major changes that occurred in the first two years of the acquirement of this hotel. I have also gained marketing and sales experience through an internship with Enterprise Rent-a-Car over the past summer. I was very excited to take this course because I really enjoy finding solutions to problems.

 

 

 

 

 

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Chris Stubblefield
I’m a senior business student concentrating in marketing from Elk Grove, California. I am interested in the fields of brand management and advertisement. Currently; I am the Treasurer for the American Marketing Association, Marketing Mentor for the Orfalea College of Business, and a Student Assistant for Administration. As a marketing mentor I have gained further insights on managing multiple teams and guiding them through developing thorough marketing plans based on a product of their choice and developing pitches for investors. In the past I have also worked as a marketing assistant for Limberg LASIK. With Limberg I helped manage their social media accounts, engage new clients as their initial point of contact, and manage many of the back-end workings of the office. In my spare time I like to hike, explore San Luis Obispo county, and mess around with Photoshop.

 

 

 

 

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Alicia Yonan
I am a fourth year Business Administration student concentrating in Marketing at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. I was born and raised in Long Beach, CA, and have interned in a variety of industries including the health and wellness, theme parks, and hotels. Most recently, I have worked within Consumer Insight at The Walt Disney Company, where I worked closely with Marketing Strategy to evaluate consumer responses to Disneyland and determining the optimal way to continue our marketing. In my spare time, I enjoy hiking, eating at the local restaurants, and binge watching shows on Netflix.

We have enjoyed having our interns meet with us, and work with us over the past quarter. We will miss them, yet we want to wish them well in their future endeavors!

 

 

 

 

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Nutella

Over Valentines Day weekend I was in charge of Red Velvet Cupcakes for the Pleasant Valley wine Trail, since we are a part of the trail. Everyone had something they made and then paired with a wine. We paired our cupcakes with our Late Harvest Zinfandel. I heard nothing but good things, so I was very happy that it was warmly received.

I made 100 cupcakes on Friday night, and then another 100 on Saturday night. I used the recipe that was passed down from my Great Aunt Nelle. She was a great cook, and it was said in the family that she asked about the recipe one time when she was visited the Waldorf Hotel. I later learned that many southern women told the story about asking for the recipe from the Waldorf. She was a traveler, and was a fantastic cool. I never questioned the story!

My Great Aunt used to make Red Velvet Cake for my dad every year on his birthday. It was his favorite cake. She also would make a mayonnaise cake that was so delicious. Although, I remember that she didn’t like to say the name around me, it made me sick to think of mayonnaise being used to bake a cake. When we would love something that she made, she would give an index card with the recipe to my mom. We would cherish those recipe cards. There was a special wooded box that we kept them.

Never the less, here is the recipe for the cake…

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 ½ cups olive oil
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1  teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ pounds canned beets, drained and pureed
  • 1 tablespoon red food color
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature (I make my own by adding vinegar, and waiting for 10 minutes, 
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring (1 ounce)
  • 1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Start preheating your oven to 375, drain and puree your beets. If you don’t have buttermilk in your fridge, I never do…Add one tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to your cup of milk.

Meanwhile, add your dry ingredients together, add you eggs, beets, food coloring, vanilla, vinegar, olive oil and finally, the buttermilk. Mix until all the ingredients are wet.

Add the paper cupcake holders to the cupcake pans, fill up the cupcake papers about 1/2 full. This will make about 18 cupcakes. They will take about 25 minutes to bake.

While your cupcakes are baking, you can make the frosting…

8 ounces of cream cheese (softened)

1 Stick of butter (softened)

4 cups of powdered sugar

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.

Blend your ingredients together to make the frosting. I used a pastry bag for the first time last week when I made these for Valentines day. I had to end up asking my husband to take the pastry bag away from me, since mine didn’t look good. His looked lovely!

Now, if you want to add the Nutella, it does taste delicious, but it is time consuming. We took a melon baller, and scooped out the center. After each one was done, we then added the frosting. Like I mentioned earlier, my frosting job was a little frightening, so I had my husband make them look pretty.

 

 

 

Cinquain Cellars

Beth and Dave Nagengast are the owners of Cinquain Cellars, which has some awesome wines. Cinquain Cellars is on the Pleasant Valley Wine Trail, and is open with an appointment. They are also open during our special weekend events that the trail offers.

This simple 5-line poem, called a Cinquain (pronounced sink-cane), embodies the spirit of Cinquain Cellars, from nurturing 10,000 vines on their estate vineyard, to crafting small lots of artisan wines for your pleasure and theirs. They like to think of their wine as bottled poetry and hope you will agree.

If you’re interested in knowing more, here you go…The owner and winemaker, David Nagengast, graduated from the Fresno State University Enology program in 1985 with the dream of someday having his own vineyard and winery. In 2000, the search for the perfect site culminated in the purchase of a small hillside property, overlooking Hog Canyon and the Estrella River basin from 1000-ft elevation, in the Northeast area of the Paso Robles Estrella Appellation. In 2002, the 14-acre vineyard was planted with 10,000 vines including nine different Bordeaux, Rhône, and Port varieties. In 2007, the construction of their simple 1200 square-foot winery was completed. And now, after 31 years of making wines professionally for a variety of small and medium sized wineries in Santa Cruz Mountains, Santa Clara County, and Oregon, the culmination of this dream is evident with the establishment of Nagengast Estate Vineyard, Cinquain Cellars and the availability of 1500 cases annually. Please, don’t be shy about making an appointment, they are happy to share their beautiful facility with you.

http://www.cinquaincellars.com/#contact

 

Here are some fun photos of the property…

Events

One of our upcoming events is one of my dream come true events. During the event planning process we decided that we would not make men wear a suit, and did not have to dance. We are having a band, but people don’t necessarily have to dance if they don’t wish. The party is going to include “Buona Tavola”, an Italian restaurant that is one of the best in the county. Our entertainment for the evening is Dawn Lambeth, which plays big band sounds.  We are holding the festa is in the villa at San Marcos Creek.  We are so excited abou the whole project. I believe the decorating is going to be so fun. and festive for our guests, and the super bonus is the proceeds. will benefit Studios in the Park, where students benefit. from having a place to learn about art. 

Rainy Days

We have had so many rainy days here at the winery. I must admit, I’ve seen so many rainbows lately that  I have to share…

I’m going to have to get out of the office, and take some more photos of our river. The amount of water in the river is amazing. Stay dry, and have fun!

Meet Matilda…

We have several ducks at the winery, but Matilda is special. She gets so excited when someone walks to the stainless steel garbage can, that is full of duck food. As soon as one nears the food can, she is wagging her tail, and panting like a dog. I mean, it is an audible pant…HEAVING BREATHING. Our theory is…she was raised with dogs. She likes people, and likes it when people come near her. The other ducks are a little skittish when people come to close, but not Matilda.

She really has a great personality, truly, a one of a kind.