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Ellie Anest
 
October 22, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Harvest 2020 at Eleven Eleven Winery

For us and many wineries around Napa Valley, August through October marks our harvest season. The Valley comes alive with the excitement and rush of harvest. Tending to the grapevines is a year-round process, but this is the time when the vineyards and the wineries bustle with workers racing to pick grapes at their peak ripeness. This year has certainly brought its fair share of hurdles, but we're excited to dive into what the 2020 vintage looks like for all of us here at Eleven Eleven.

The 2020 Growing Season

For an update on the growing season, we reached out to our Associate Winemaker, Brett Weis, who said, “the growing season started off with a fairly mild spring that led us into ideal conditions for bloom and set. There were a couple cooling events, but for the most part, we were off to the races for what we thought was going to be a ‘normal’ ripening season.” 

He continued, “June through August were steady and warm with no major heat spikes to speed things along until [mid-August]. Fires again have returned and, unfortunately, cast a thick layer [of smoke] across the valley. One thing I know is that we will make the best wines we can under the most difficult of circumstances.”


The Harvest of the Grapes

On August 21st, we harvested our first fruit of the year, our Sauvignon Blanc, followed by the second pick of our estate Riesling. Every year, we as a team pick grapes from some selected blocks on our Estate. Brett says, “this is truly the best team-building experience and proves to be extremely helpful for everyone. It gives insight, recognition, and respect for the land, the people, and the process that goes into a bottle of wine.” 

Through September, we continued to harvest the remainder of our estate fruit, ending with the Cab Franc the last week of the month. Even though our Harvest finished earlier than years past, the wine quality was not compromised and the resulting wines we have in house are dark, dense, and full of flavor and character. 

It is not lost on us how fortunate we are to have been able to harvest the majority of our fruit before any smoke damage from the fires. We are confident that a stellar 2020 vintage and many stories of this harvest will be enjoyed for years to come. We are fully committed to what the Eleven Eleven name stands for: quality, and of Making Our Moment Count.

We have been wearing our masks this year and our smiles are covered, but our team at Eleven Eleven has shown such resilience, perseverance, and teamwork. We are grateful for all the learnings 2020 has brought us!

Time Posted: Oct 22, 2020 at 10:52 AM
Ellie Anest
 
September 9, 2020 | Ellie Anest

The Blessing of the Grapes at Eleven Eleven Winery

For us and many wineries around the Napa Valley, August marks the beginning of harvest. Although this year has certainly brought its fair share of hurdles, we're excited to dive into what the 2020 vintage looks like for all of us here at Eleven Eleven from the blessing of the grapes and everything in between! 

Our core belief is to Make Your Moment® whenever possible, wherever you are. When you visit us in our tasting room or crack open one of our bottles at home, our goal is to elicit those meant-to-be moments that highlight inspiration and delight. The work that goes into crafting our wines is an integral part of this intention, and we look forward to sharing this special moment of our winemaking process with you.

The Tradition of the Grape Blessing

Traditionally, August 6th is recognized as the day of grape blessings. This ceremony originated as what is considered to be the first harvest of the season. This fruit maintains a special place of honor for us as we head into the season, and this blessing is a way to show our gratitude to what the earth has provided us.

This is generally an ancient Christian custom as during the first week of August, the farmers used to gather the early fruits of their summer harvest (grapes, figs, etc.) and present them in the church to be blessed and give them to the congregation. These fruits are called the “beginnings”.

Each year, our team gathers as a group (safely and socially distanced, this year!) around a bin of new grapes to partake in this special occasion. Each person has their own unique way of pouring the wine, from a simple splash to a zig-zag or cross formation. This has been a tradition we have kept since we started the winery. Here you can see our Associate Winemaker, Brett Weis, pouring a previous vintage of our Rosé over new Syrah grapes!
 

Thoughts from Our Leadership Team

While harvest is always a busy, exciting time for the wine industry as a whole, we’d be remiss if we didn’t acknowledge the fires affecting the Napa and Sonoma Valleys. As with any fire or natural disaster, it’s a little unnerving for all of us both personally, and making sure Eleven Eleven as a business is operating to the best of our ability. 

We pride ourselves at Eleven Eleven on being a close-knit family, and the well-being of our employees and guests continue to be paramount. With COVID-19 on top of this, 2020 has presented an especially unique challenge both in and out of production and the tasting room.

As we slowly phase into autumn, winter, and the holidays that come with this season of life, we’re increasingly thankful for our family, friends, our Club 11:11 members, and loyal Eleven Eleven supporters like you!

Time Posted: Sep 9, 2020 at 9:47 PM
Ellie Anest
 
May 12, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Eleven Eleven “Eat What You Watch” Series: Our Favorite Wine, Food, and Movie Pairings Part 7

We love a good wine and food pairing here at Eleven Eleven, and one of our team’s favorite cookbooks, Eat What You Watch, takes it one step further by adding a fitting movie to each pairing. While you’re safe indoors, continue to pick up a little inspiration for your next wine and food pairing and see the choice of Co-Founder, Ellie Anest, below! Did you miss parts 1 through 6? If so, check them out, here.

The pairing: Pasta with prison gravy & meatballs and chocolate truffles
The movie: Goodfellas and Chocolat

Goodfellas is widely regarded as one of the greatest films in the gangster genre. This movie was adapted from the life of American Mobster, Henry Hill Jr. It’s filled with night club scenes, murder, drugs, marriage, friendship, and betrayal. While it has everything you could possibly need in a movie, you need a big, bold, complex wine to accompany the film.

With the amazing direction of Martin Scorsese and skillful acting of Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, and Ray Liotta, this movie screams for a pairing with a savory pasta with prison gravy and meatballs and our 2017 Laki’s Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

To soften the craziness of a mobster movie, I added the romantic drama, Chocolat, starring Juliette Binoche. Her elegance in this movie is also reminiscent of our Cabernet, and anyone that knows me well knows I appreciate the best chocolate!

Stay tuned for the final installation of our “Eat What You Watch” series, where another team member will share their favorite pairing. We hope this inspires you to Make Your Moment® and research some new and fun pairings you haven’t tried before. Share your creation with us on Instagram by tagging us @11.11.wines. Bon appétit!

Time Posted: May 12, 2020 at 8:47 AM
Ellie Anest
 
May 8, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Make Your Moment Series Virtual Experience: Episode 1 - Recipes from Joy & Ryan!

Thank you again to all that were able to join episode 1 of our Make Your Moment Series Virtual Experience! By popular demand, special guests Joy Bauer and Ryan Scott have shared two very special recipes with us that were mentioned during this experience: Joy's Protein Bagels and Ryan's Banana Pancakes!

See below for the recipes and instructions:

Joy's Protein Bagels:

In New York (where I’m from), bagels are a way of life—and they’re totally delicious. But let’s face it, these doughy delights are typically made with refined, junky white flour, are void of nutrition, and can set you back more calories and carbs than you care to count—and that’s before you spread on your topping of choice. These better-for-you bagels pack 10 grams of protein, 4 grams of fiber, and a whole host of vitamins and minerals. That’s because they’re made with whole-grain flour, which contains more fiber and minerals than standard flour; chia seeds, which are filled with fiber and omega-3 fats; and protein-rich Greek yogurt. Now that’s a good morning!

Note: These bagels freeze wonderfully. When ready to enjoy, simply thaw in the microwave, slice, and toast in the toaster oven. Alternatively, you can slice them before freezing and place them directly in the toaster oven from the freezer.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 35 minutes
Serving: 8 bagels


INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups white whole-wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional)
  • 1½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups non-fat plain Greek yogurt (thicker brands work best)


PREPARATION:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

Combine the flour, baking powder, chia seeds, and salt in a large bowl. Add the yogurt and mix until all the ingredients are incorporated into a batter. Knead the dough with clean hands until it’s dry and elastic (this will take about 1 minute). Divide into 8 balls.

One at a time, roll each ball between your palms and form into a long rope (if it breaks apart, just squish it back together). Lay the rope on the parchment paper and form it into a circular shape, cinching the ends to complete a closed bagel. Leave space between each bagel on the baking sheet so they’re not touching.

Dip the tops into any preferred seasonings, if desired.

Place in the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Let cool before slicing.

NOTE: This recipe is from Joy's new cookbook, Joy Bauer’s Superfood!

_________________________________________________________________________

RYAN'S BANANA PANCAKES:


INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup of Straus milk 
  • 2 whole eggs 
  • 2 whole over-ripened bananas 
  • 2 tsp baking powder 
  • 2 tsp baking soda 
  • 1 tsp salt 
  • 2 cups AP flour 
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla 


PREPARATION:

Blitz everything in the blender until super smooth for 30 seconds.

Preheat a nonstick pan on to medium heat and pour a 1/4 cup of batter for each cake (I just lightly spray the pan with pan spray and whip it once clean, that’s it).

They take around 2 to 3 minutes per side, and you can tell they’re ready to flip when you see a lot of bubbles.

I like to cool them on a rack (so they don’t steam) that way I can put them in the fridge for the next couple days to eat.

Time Posted: May 8, 2020 at 7:45 AM
Ellie Anest
 
May 7, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Eleven Eleven “Eat What You Watch” Series: Our Favorite Wine, Food, and Movie Pairings Part 6

We love a good wine and food pairing here at Eleven Eleven! While you’re safe indoors, continue to pick up a little inspiration for your next wine and food pairing and see the choice of Co-Founder, Aurelien Roulin, below! Did you miss parts 1 through 5? If so, check them out, here.

The pairing: Flapjacks
The movie: Groundhog Day

Now more than ever we are staying home, and as a result, the days seem to run together. There is no better movie to emulate this feeling than Groundhog Day!

One of my favorite scenes from this film is when Phil and Rita are in the Tip Top Cafe and Phil has just ordered everything on the menu. The table is full of donuts, pastries, a plateful of eggs, bacon, and sausage, a huge strawberry milkshake, and of course, flapjacks! 

A stack of pancakes with strawberries and whipped cream on top with another small black pan of a pancake in the background

Flapjacks are mentioned a couple of times in the movie, and the hue of the strawberry shake is what sparked my pairing idea. There’s just one thing missing from his extravagant table spread, and that’s the perfect morning libation - our 2019 Estate Rosé of Syrah! This wine simply looks screams “morning” and would be the perfect pairing for anything on Phil's table. I might put a bit of a French twist on this with a pairing of crepes or french toast. Add some whipped cream and fresh berries to either of these and I know my day is off to a good start!

Stay tuned for the final installation of our “Eat What You Watch” series, where another team member will share their favorite pairing. We hope this inspires you to Make Your Moment® and research some new and fun pairings you haven’t tried before. Share your creation with us on Instagram by tagging us @11.11.wines. Bon appétit!

Time Posted: May 7, 2020 at 11:47 AM
Ellie Anest
 
April 27, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Eleven Eleven “Eat What You Watch” Series: Our Favorite Wine, Food, and Movie Pairings Part 5

We love a good wine and food pairing here at Eleven Eleven, and one of our team’s favorite cookbooks, Eat What You Watch, takes it one step further by adding a fitting movie to each pairing. While you’re safe indoors, continue to pick up a little inspiration for your next wine and food pairing and see our Winemaker's - Kirk Venge - choice below! Did you miss parts 1 through 4? If so, check them out, here.

The pairing: BBQ plank salmon with lemon and dill weed garnish
The movie: A River Runs Through It

The Maclean brothers, Paul and Norman, live a relatively idyllic life in rural Montana spending much of their time fly fishing in the movie A River Runs Through It. The sons of a minister, the boys eventually part company when Norman moves east to attend college, leaving his rebellious brother to find trouble back home. When Norman finally returns, the siblings resume their fishing outings and assess both where they've been, and where they're going.

A favorite of our Winemaker, Kirk Venge, this classic film pairs best with none other than a BBQ plank salmon with a hint of lemon and dill weed garnish. With it, Kirk loves our 2018 Dutton Ranch Chardonnay as it complements this dish beautifully. Brimming with zest, freshness, and layers of flavor, the palate of this wine continues with a round mouthfeel and presents flavors of baked golden apple, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The savory flavors and touches of citrus found in this salmon recipe make this a perfect, healthy night-in dinner option while you enjoy this quintessential Brad Pitt movie!

Stay tuned for next week’s installation of our “Eat What You Watch” series, where another team member will share their favorite pairing. We hope this inspires you to Make Your Moment® and research some new and fun pairings you haven’t tried before. Share your creation with us on Instagram by tagging us @11.11.wines. Bon appétit!

Time Posted: Apr 27, 2020 at 11:26 AM
Ellie Anest
 
April 20, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Eleven Eleven “Eat What You Watch” Series: Our Favorite Wine, Food, and Movie Pairings Part 4

We love a good wine and food pairing here at Eleven Eleven, and one of our team’s favorite cookbooks, Eat What You Watch, takes it one step further by adding a fitting movie to each pairing. While you’re safe indoors, continue to pick up a little inspiration for your next wine and food pairing and see Bob's choice below! Did you miss parts 1, 2, and 3 where we featured Holly, Jordan, and Joy's pairings? If so, check them out, here.

The pairing: Zinfandel and Fried Chicken with Corn on the Cob

The movie: What About Bob?

Bob is a beloved part-time Wine Educator of ours, and we took this opportunity to choose this pairing on his behalf because we just couldn’t resist!

In the movie What About Bob?, Bob Wiley - a character only Bill Murray could pull off - is the endearingly unstable patient of Dr. Leo Marvin. Their doctor-patient relationship is perfectly encapsulated during a memorable family dinner scene at Dr. Marvin’s house, wherein Bob’s enthusiastic adulation of fried chicken and corn sends Dr. Marvin over the edge.

We all love this fried chicken and corn on the cob recipe with our 2017 Moss Creek Old Vine Zinfandel because this wine has both sweet and peppery characteristics on the palate with just a touch of tannin. It’s a very versatile wine that accents the hints of spice and herbs in the batter of the fried chicken, and the sweetness of the corn. It’s the perfect combination for enjoying a quiet evening at home watching this film.

Stay tuned for next week’s installation of our “Eat What You Watch” series, where another team member will share their favorite pairing. We hope this inspires you to Make Your Moment® and research some new and fun pairings you haven’t tried before. Share your creation with us on Instagram by tagging us @11.11.wines. Bon appétit!

Time Posted: Apr 20, 2020 at 9:06 AM
Ellie Anest
 
April 14, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Eleven Eleven “Eat What You Watch” Series: Our Favorite Wine, Food, and Movie Pairings Part 3

We love a good wine and food pairing here at Eleven Eleven, and one of our team’s favorite cookbooks, Eat What You Watch, takes it one step further by adding a fitting movie to each pairing. While you’re safe indoors, continue to pick up a little inspiration for your next wine and food pairing and see Jordan’s choice below! Did you miss parts 1 and 2 where we featured Holly and Jordan’s favorite pairings? If so, check them out, here.
 

The pairing: Chardonnay and Pasta Aglio e Olio
The movie: Chef

Like food, sometimes movies are greater than the sum of their parts. The movie Chef proved to be a critically lauded gem for foodies. Jon Favreau plays a stubborn chef who decides to carve his own path in the food world by starting a food truck business. But, one of the most memorable dishes from the movie isn’t a Cubano he whips up for his customers; it’s the Pasta Aglio e Olio he makes for his date, played by Scarlett Johansson. A seemingly simple combination of a few classic ingredients, it’s an easy-to-make dish perfect for a late-night, a date night, or any night!
 

What Joy has to say:
“This dish is one of my favorites because my husband has mastered preparing it and I get to sit back, relax and enjoy. Our 2017 Chardonnay from Dutton Ranch is a great balance with not only the food, which is light yet flavorful, but it’s the perfect wine to sip with the dish when it’s done or while cooking. As Binging with Babish says, this meal is the perfect example of ‘something that is greater than the sum of its parts’. At first glance, the ingredients don't necessarily scream ‘Chardonnay’, but you will be pleasantly surprised by the magic that is this pairing.” 
 

Stay tuned for next week’s installation of our “Eat What You Watch” series, where another team member will share their favorite pairing. We hope this inspires you to Make Your Moment® and research some new and fun pairings you haven’t tried before. Share your creation with us on Instagram by tagging us @11.11.wines. Bon appétit!

Time Posted: Apr 14, 2020 at 11:57 AM
Ellie Anest
 
April 7, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Eleven Eleven “Eat What You Watch” Series: Our Favorite Wine, Food, and Movie Pairings, Part 2

We love a good wine and food pairing here at Eleven Eleven, and one of our team’s favorite cookbooks, Eat What You Watch, takes it one step further by adding a fitting movie to each pairing. While you’re safe indoors, continue to pick up a little inspiration for your next wine and food pairing and see Jordan’s choice below! Did you miss part 1 where we featured Holly’s pairing? If so, check it out, here!

The pairing: Estate Riesling and Confit Byaldi
The movie: Ratatouille

Remy, the exceptionally talented young rat chef in Ratatouille, is propelled to the title of “the finest chef in France” thanks to this vegetable dish he serves to a food critic. The French will be quick to correct you if you were to call Remy’s signature dish “ratatouille”, though, because the dish in the movie is actually an interpretation concocted by none other than esteemed chef Thomas Keller, who serves as the movie’s food consultant. Visually attractive and even more delicious, it softened even the most cold-hearted antagonist into cracking a smile and greedily chowing down.

What Jordan has to say:

“Not only is the movie ‘Ratatouille’ fantastic, but so is this recipe with our 2018 Destin Estate Riesling! Confit Byaldi is rich in flavor while also maintaining a lightness to it. The same could be said about our Riesling. It is dry in style with hints of orange zest and citrus. The brightness in acidity works perfectly to complement the Confit Byaldi, allowing the layers of flavors and herbaceousness to shine. This pairing is perfect from start to finish - just like the film ‘Ratatouille’.”

And, this recipe is especially fun to make with kids. Craft this colorful dish and settle down for a cozy night in and enjoy the meal while watching the movie. It’s especially fun to see the Confit Byaldi in the film because you can all say you’ve tried it, too!

Stay tuned for next week’s installation of our “Eat What You Watch” series, where another team member will share their favorite pairing. We hope this inspires you to Make Your Moment® and research some new and fun pairings you haven’t tried before. Share your creation with us on Instagram by tagging us @11.11.wines. Bon appétit!

Time Posted: Apr 7, 2020 at 5:00 PM
Ellie Anest
 
April 1, 2020 | Ellie Anest

Eleven Eleven “Eat What You Watch” Series: Our Favorite Wine, Food, and Movie Pairings, Part 1

Right now, we’re all spending a lot more time at home. We know it can feel daunting to plan meals every night, so we wanted to help! We love a good wine and food pairing here at Eleven Eleven, and one of our team’s favorite cookbooks, Eat What You Watch, takes it one step further by adding a fitting movie to each pairing.

We thought it would be fun to take this unique opportunity to sift through this book and highlight our team’s very own favorite combinations and encourage you to give them a try for a perfect evening spent at home. This will be a multi-part series where you can enjoy some light reading each week, and perhaps pick up a little inspiration for your next wine and food pairing along the way! First up is Holly, Manager, Hospitality & Wine Club.


The pairing: Bacigalupi Pinot Noir and Boeuf Bourguignon
The movie: Julie and Julia

Julie Powell, of the movie Julie and Julia, is a food blogger determined to cook through the entirety of Julia Child’s classic cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking in one year. The climax of this feat is her attempt at boeuf bourguignon, a dish so important and representative of the intricacies of traditional French cuisine that she decides to serve it to her first food critic. 

What Holly has to say:

“I chose this dish because I absolutely love Julia Child and love creating anything she has made. We hosted a French-themed murder mystery dinner and cooked this dish for our guests. We served it with the 2017 Bacigalupi Pinot Noir because it 

really brings out the soothing flavors of the dish. Everybody at the dinner agreed. This has become my favorite pairing when I want a relaxing evening inside.”

Stay tuned for next week’s installation of our “Eat What You Watch” series, where another team member will share their favorite pairing. We hope this inspires you to Make Your Moment® and research some new and fun pairings you haven’t tried before. Share your creation with us on Instagram by tagging us @11.11.wines. Bon appétit!

Time Posted: Apr 1, 2020 at 1:51 PM