When Work Becomes Pleasure – 2022 Foothill Wine Festival Judging

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Just finished the judging portion of the 2022 Foothill Wine Festival event. To recap the Foothill Wine Festival, put on by the Greater Folsom Partnership is combination of the Folsom Chamber of Commerce, the Visitors Bureau and their Economic Development Agency. Coleen Schwietert was hired to lead the charge to create the Wine Festival. Mike Owen, acting as the Wine Matter Expert and advisor helping arranging judges and the judging sub-culture. Mike is the owner/winemaker at Crystal Basin Cellars and this event was something he created.

The goal of the Folsom Partners is to:

  • Raise awareness of wines from grapes from foothill juice
  • Create a platform where outstanding wines could be identified
  • Create active visits by wine lovers to Sierra foothills wineries
  • Enhance visibility of Folsom as the Gateway to Sierra wine country.

In just two years they are well on their way to accomplish these goals and many others.

The first portion is the blind wine competition, followed up with a tasting from most of the participant wineries. Here is a photo from last year’s event held outdoors with food and music included.

This year’s event is being held April 2nd at the Palladio Shopping center. One can secure tickets at https://www.etix.com/ticket/p/4568178/foothill-wine-fes-folsom-palladio-lifestyle-center-palladio-parkway

Last night a scrumptious dinner at the Plank Craft Kitchen & Bar in downtown Folsom of seared Ahi tuna.

Today was judging day and did we have our work cut out for us. Here is a picture of the wines before they were brought to the back room a few days before our arrival.

I am always fascinated by the number of glasses used in these events. Here is less than half of them.

We were served six wines each time on beautifully handcrafted trays. They were labeled and identified only with a code number and for example as White Blend, Dry Rose, Red Blend, Sangiovese, Other Italian Blends, etc. Here are pictures of the Dry Rose and Red Blend trays:

Here is a group picture of the esteemed judges and there was an equal number of volunteers (but no photo) who made the event run flawlessly.

Each table of three or four judges rated each wine in their assigned categories. Once all six were scored individually, the table “verbally arm wrestled” with insight, experience, Socratic discourse and their trained palates, to come to a group rating. The moderator then recorded each score to be turned in to the “man on the computer” to be recorded.  Here was our table with Judges Mike Dunne (wine judge czar & writer), Guy Tucker (writer for foothillswino.com), Moderator & Task Master Madeline Owen and I.

Results of the event should be forthcoming for the public in the next few days. Some very good wines were tasted, enjoyed and should be sought after for their acclaim. Stay tuned.






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