I'm back in the office after spending last week in Napa for the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers. My final stop before heading back to Sacramento was a tasting at Shafer Vineyards (highlights of the tasting were the gorgeous 1995 and 2002 vintages of its Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon). The tasting room was also being lit up by a jovial David Berkley, the longtime gourmet grocer and wine merchant from Sacramento. David Berkley Fine Wines and Specialty Foods still operates in the Pavilions shopping center off Fair Oaks Blvd., though Berkley sold the business in June due to such health issues as impending double knee replacement surgery. Berkley ran his shop for 23 years, and was a White House wine advisor during President Reagan's administration.
But as Berkley chatted up the room, sharing hugs and laughs with winery president Doug Shafer, Berkley offered this scoop: he's coming back with a new venture. Berkley didn't offer many details, such as where his new business will be located or what kind of flavor it might have. But Berkley says he's looking to open in eight months, so we'll stay on top of this and pass along more details as they come through.