Firsthand Reports of How 3 Northbay Companies fare after the Fires
The fires in October of 2017 that struck several wine country regions in Northern California destroyed over 6500 homes and business, and left thousands with shelter or work. This is an unprecedented regional tragedy. Fortunately, we have received words of hope from at least three companies that not all is lost.
Here are their firsthand status reports.
SPICY VINES: Healdsburg
A big thank you is in order, as we have received an overwhelming number of heartfelt messages from our customers this past week due to the recent fires that have hit the Sonoma, Napa and Mendocino Counties.
We are sending this email to let everyone know that our Spicy Vines tasting room, team and families are all safe, for which we are truly grateful. Many of our friends, local businesses and colleagues however, are in much less fortunate situations. We send our sincerest condolences to all of them. We are in this together and we will rebuild together.
Amidst these devastations, our tasting room will re-open this weekend with normal business hours. We are also keeping our live music this Saturday from 7-10pm featuring Adam Lieb & The Disorderly House Band. We invite everyone to come together on this evening, shake off a bit of the weeks stress and celebrate the most important thing we have – each other. Please bring a donation item for one of our local shelters, a friend and a smile. No cover.
We apologize for any delays on wine shipments. We know that you all understand the circumstances and thank you again for all of your love and support.
We’re doing well. It’s so shocking how fast this happened. They say the fire spread at 150 miles an hour. We evacuated our office in Santa Rosa, and just got back up again today. We still have some employees that are evacuated. Our farm is pretty far from Redwood Valley where the big fire is. Tho ash was falling as close as Comptche. We filled water tanks and had a fire truck here. We’re in harvest, so the fire truck was here so Don could respond more quickly to fires/emergencies. Typical in rural volunteer departments where no one actually lives at the fire house. (in firefighting terms, the truck was “in service” and Don was “covering” i.e. ready to respond.
Thank you for your many thoughts, concerns, and messages over the past week – it will certainly be a week that we will never forget. We were one of the fortunate: all employees are safe. We experienced no damage to property, nor had smoke at any of our unharvested vineyards – an odd advantage of being in a remote corner of the Mayacamas Range. The fire swept through our winemaker Alex Beloz’s neighborhood, but his home was miraculously saved.
The skies cleared from the southern portion of the valley midday Saturday and as of Monday, many of the mandatory evacuations were lifted. The fires have largely been contained, and rain is on the way later this week. Life begins to return to normal for many, and harvest continues. We sincerely thank those who came to our collective aid, and saved the town of Sonoma not once, but twice.
Beginning as soon as this coming weekend, the best way to support the region (besides drinking wine of course…) is to visit. If you have plans to come to wine country, don’t cancel them. The towns of Sonoma and Napa emerged essentially unscathed, and 95%+ of the wineries and valley acreage were untouched by fire. If visitors stay away from wine country, the economic damage to wineries and other small businesses will be compounded.
We hope to resume wine shipments shortly. Thank you for your support, as always.