Happy Wife, Happy Life… “Yes Dear”

   “YES DEAR” – On October 5th Jenifer and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary. Gerry and Rosie just celebrated 63 years of “Marital Bliss”. The advice they have always given us is to say “Yes Dear” and “I Love You” to each other as much as possible. I share that advice and enjoy each time I see a couple on our property exploring our beautiful grounds in anticipation of their wedding day. I challenge the groom-to-be to see if he is worthy of the bride’s love. “What are the two most important words to a long term and successful marriage?” I ask. It is amazing some of the responses are: “I’m sorry,” “I apologize,” “you’re right,” “I do.” The smart ones say “Yes Dear”. I explain that if you say “Yes Dear”, you do not have to say those dreaded aforementioned words. I immediately turn to the bride-to-be and say “It is just as easy for you to say Yes Dear as it is for him”. Marriage is indeed a 60-60 relationship.

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My wife and many of her friends, my sister Libby and sister-in-law Deanna love Rombauer Chardonnay. It is oaky, smoky, smooth, and of course very expensive. Jenifer had asked several times, “Why don’t you make a Chardonnay I like?”  So as any good husband would do, I asked our winemaker that very question. He said our existing Chard was the style he preferred to make and he felt it expressed the true characteristics of the chardonnay fruit. I asked if we could possibly make a Rombauer style Chardonnay. He said to get a bottle and he would dissect it chemically. He worked his chemistry magic and then uttered the dreaded words no husband wants to hear: “ We can do it, but it’s going to cost you.” Dang it, of course it is, I said. Isn’t it always the case that if your wife wants something? He proceeded to tell me that we will need to do barrel fermentation, preferably in French Oak (big bucks) to bring out the soft vanilla notes. We will need to do malolactic fermentation to bring out the butter notes. We needed to age it longer to give it better mouth feel, as the list went on and on. Of course my direction to him was “Get er done, happy wife equals a happy life.”

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He worked with the ladies of Wilson Creek and Jenifer taste it throughout the process. The first vintage was amazing. Jenifer was so happy and so proud. The first year we made the Chardonnay Jenifer’s way, I was at the tasting bar with a couple and broke out an unlabeled bottle. I explained how it was created to please my wife and he excitedly said “Oh my gosh, You have to name it Yes Dear! Wow, he was spot on and the rest is history.

All was good in the world, but not for long… The next year the winemaker missed a key step. He did not get my wife’s input or any Wilson ladies input of approval before bottling. He just bottled and labeled it Yes Dear. Whoa is me. Jenifer was not happy. The Chardonnay that was made was incredible and the wine writers, judges and critics loved it. I mean they really loved it. It won all sorts of awards. But it just was not the style my wife liked. So now we make sure that we get Jenifer, Libby and Deanna to put their stamp of approval on the Yes Dear wine before it goes into the bottle.

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We now make two styles of Chardonnay, one labeled “Yes Dear” from Happy Wife Vineyard, and the other Chardonnay whatever style the winemaker sees fit.  So if you want a soft, easy drinking Chardonnay and just want to make your wife happy with a fun label, buy a bottle of the Yes Dear and tell your spouse

I LOVE YOU…..                 

Cheers! 

Bill Wilson

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