A New Year of Wine and Cheese

January is traditionally time to resolve to make changes in our lives, perhaps to learn something new and try something intriguing and challenging.  We can help you get started at Curds and Wine!  Learning to make your own cheeses is rewarding in many ways - besides ending up with some wonderful cheeses, the magic of cheesemaking is a reward in itself.  We have some great Cheesemaking Kits available to get you going, as well as a wide selection of Cheesemaking books.  We also offer our Cheesemaking Fundamentals Classes (see more details below) or you can take local cheesemaking classes with our friend and Queso Diegan Virginia Masters.  Or, for the cheese-curious, join our local cheese club Queso Diego - they were featured in the Winter 2012 issue of Culture Magazine!

Perhaps you are more interested in learning to make your own wine.  We have several ways for you to get your hands purple at Curds and Wine!  You can make wine on site any time of year with wine kits - bring a group of friends and share the fun!  We also have Basic Winemaking from Fresh Grapes 3-part seminar series, as well as a Hands-on Harvest Winemaking Course and Grapes to Glass Winemaking Course. Our Hands-on Harvest course is currently sold out, but you can contact us to get on the waiting list.

group of bottles cropped


2013 Winemaker Magazine Conference in Monterey, May 17-18

2013logoIt's time to start planning to go to the 2013 Winemaker Magazine Conference in Monterey! This conference is a must for any home winemaker, a great opportunity to broaden your winemaking expertise as well as interact with winemakers from all over the world.  With your conference registration you get:

  • Admission to the conference’s full schedule of seminars 
  • Two Continental Breakfasts 
  • Two Lunches with Keynote Addresses 
  • Admission to Friday Night’s Tasting Party & Wine Share 
  • Admission to Saturday Night’s WineMaker International Amateur Wine Competition Awards Dinner 
  • Admission to Sponsor Exhibits Conference 
  • Welcome Bag with Binder Containing Seminar Presentations 
  • One Year (6 issues) Subscription/Renewal to WineMaker magazine

The amazing seminars are always informative and will expand your horizons as a winemaker. Lunches and dinners are a great time to meet fellow winemakers from around the world, and of course sample some great wines!

Curds and Wine is a sponsor of the 2013 conference, and if you will be attending please let us know, we have a special gift for you! You can register online now -- register early and save $100 off of the registration fee before March 1, 2013. Every conference has sold out so far, so don't miss your opportunity!

WineMaker International Amateur Wine Competition

The WineMaker International Amateur Wine Competition is the largest event of its kind in the world - last year 4,318 wines were entered. Entries must be sent in by March 15, 2013, more information for entering your wines is online here. All entrants will receive their judging notes back along with a list of the medal-winning wines.

Wine entries need to be delivered to WineMaker's Vermont offices at:

Battenkill Communications
5515 Main St.
Manchester Center, VT 05255
by: March 15, 2013

Wines will be judged in Vermont April 19-21, 2013.  Results are first announced at the WineMaker Magazine Conference in Monterey, California on May 18, 2013 (Results will be posted on winemakermag.com and mailed out soon after) .

Our customers have always done very well in competitions, let us know if you do win a medal!

Cheesemaking Fundamentals Classes Saturday March 9th or 16th, 1 - 3:30 pm, $65/person

Cheese_spreadJoin us at Curds and Wine to learn how easy and rewarding it is to make your own cheeses at home! At this class you will learn the fundamental processes behind fresh cheesemaking as well as the techniques for making pressed cheeses and aged cheeses such as cheddar, gouda, and camembert. We will show you how to make fromage blanc, ricotta, and queso fresco, and demonstrate the processes involved in making feta, swiss-style cheeses and mold-ripened cheeses such as camembert/brie-style and blue cheeses. We will have samples of the various styles of cheeses you can make at home from Venissimo, as well as other refreshments. Finally, you will receive a packet with a recipe booklet to make the cheeses from the class as well as basic supplies to get you started with your cheesemaking. You will also receive a 10% discount on your total purchases in the shop following the class.

The fee for this class is $65 per person, and class size is limited to 15 participants.  No refunds on tickets. Sign up and purchase tickets for these classes here:

Saturday March 9th, 1 - 3:30 pm
Saturday March 16th, 1 - 3:30 pm

These classes sell out fast! If you would like to check for an opening or to be put on the waiting list for this class, call the shop or email us.

Featured Product: Brew Belt for Cold Weather Fermentation

Vintner's Best Brew BeltThe Vintner's Best® Brew Belt will help you maintain a constant brewing temperature of 68-75° F for all of your fermenting beverages (wine must, beer wort) . Environments in your home may not be ideal for keeping your fermenter at the perfect temperature. The Brew Belt is here to help - it will maintain a constant temperature for up to 8 days without having to heat the entire room. Comes with two spring sizes to fit most fermenters.


Get your today at Curds and Wine!

Congratulations to Queso Diego - 2 Year Anniversary!

In January of 2010, Chris Banker set up an online forum for San Diego cheesemakers. Within a few months a group of forum members met to form the Queso Diego Cheese club. Many congratulations to our president, Chris Banker, for getting us all organized! We also have an outstanding Vice President, Ringo Firefly, who recently published an article about the club in Culture magazine!  We also have an amazing Secretary, Anna Kearns, and our Treasurer, Larry Stein, who took the photographs in the Culture magazine article.

Meetings have been very productive and tons of fun, with lots of homemade cheeses and other homemade goodies galore. Most members are just starting out making their own cheeses -- join us! Sign up for the email list online at quesodiego.org, "like" the club's Facebook page or follow them on Twitter to get updates on recipes and other cheesy events and discussions.

January 2012 Queso Diego cheers