Rock Wall Wine Company is considered an urban winery located on Alameda island in the East Bay of the San Francisco Bay Area. Operated by Winemaker, Shauna Rosenblum, this young lady has done well with herself. As the daughter of Kent Rosenblum, a man who helped put California Zinfandel on the map, Shauna’s senses developed naturally and now shares her own creations throughout the nation. Rock Wall took us to the islands at the Urban Paradise event.
When you drive thru the tunnel or over a bridge to get to Alameda island, you’re not quite there yet. Reach the old naval base and you can imagine the activity the area had back in the day. Hangers are now Faction Brewing Company, St. George Spirits, a gym and of course Rock Wall Wine Company. The beautiful skyline of the concrete jungle that is San Francisco shifts your vehicle to auto-pilot passed the main entrance to the tasting room and as far as you can get to the edge of the lot. Yes, this will be your view from the main tasting room. I have spent many days here with friends enjoying Shauna’s wines outside on the deck or playing bocce ball.
Back to this particular event, the VIP hour-long preview for media, members and investors was held in a smaller tasting room in the hanger. The room displayed photos of Kurt Rosenblum, a bar lined with the many wine offerings, a cheese and charcuterie platter, tables and chairs, a lounge area near the fireplace and a Christmas tree. There, Chelsea, the Director of PR, greeted my guest and I.
Wristbands were applied and an invitation to try the new releases was appreciated. The staff wore all black and warm smiles. We started with the blanc de blanc sparkling. It was the perfect wine to start the event with. The aromatics were sweet and tastes of stonefruit.
Moving onto the Fiano, a white, Italian grape I cannot recall enjoying in some time. Chelsea, someone who enjoys to cook, says she would pair this with a fatty fish. The Nebbiolo, another Italian grape native to the Piedmont area, was another varietal I do not see too often on restaurant wine menus. I thought it was light with a tart finish, a perfect holiday party wine. Chelsea says it was low-alcohol, subtle and she would pair it with pasta or pizza.
Though the VIP time was for an hour, the 45 minutes I had to enjoy was definitely not long enough to try the Romancer, Cab Franc and several Zins that were on the counter. Oh, the joys of wine tasting and talking about the experience and where each wine takes you. You lose track of time. After a brief stay in the lounge area, we made our way to the main event.
Down the hall and through double doors, you walk into a large, chilled room with wine barrels stocked high and lined along the perimeter. Glasses with Rock Wall logos are up for grabs, tables of wine and catered offerings by Elisa’s Catering, Sonoma Creamery and more were also available. Music by Ukulenny filled the room and colorful room centerpieces and string decorations hung from the ceiling.
The cheese spread was quite impressive. Elisa’s Catering stole the show with their delicious crab cakes, fried chicken and waffles, meatballs and ahi poke cones.
Be sure to follow Rock Wall on social media and sign up for their newsletter to attend one of these events in the future. You won’t regret it!