• Tongue tacos and press proofs

    11.21.2014

    Our two Jims just returned from a quick trip to wine country down in Napa and Sonoma. Now before you get too jealous, the trip was less about world-class wine, gourmet dining and chateau touring than it was about the inside of print facilities and press-checking some gorgeous new labels for our client, Chateau Ste. Michelle.

    But for those of you who love to geek out on all things offset, you’d have been in 7th heaven. The things these printers can accomplish on press, particularly our friends at CCL Label Sonoma, is phenomenal. From inline embossing, foil stamping and screen printing to “hot-swappable” print heads that allow all sorts of flexibility with the effects of different inks and finishes and the order in which they’re laid down.

    One of CCL's massive printing presses

    One of CCL’s massive printing presses


    Needless to say we took advantage of all of them, with some really impressive results! Unfortunately the products aren’t on the market yet so you’ll just have to wait to see for yourselves (stay tuned).

    And for all you wine-lovers out there, fear not, it wasn’t ALL work and no play. Ste. Michelle put us up at the famous Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, in Nathan Fay’s house no less! As the man who planted the first Cabernet Sauvignon vines in Napa Valley way back in 1961, Fay is considered by many as the godfather of Napa Valley Cab. Since his death in 2001, the folks at Stag’s Leap have kept his farmhouse overlooking the vineyards relatively intact for guests of the winery. In fact it was their ’73 Cab made from the grapes of that very vineyard that took first place honors at the 1976 “Judgment of Paris” (a fantastic story in and of itself), and put American wine on the global map as a force to be reckoned with.

    The Fay Vineyard

    The Fay Vineyard at Stag’s Leap

    Little sitting area that looks up to the "V" in the mountains where Native American legend has it that hunters surrounded a fabled Stag. With bow and arrows drawn, the brave stag jumped from one point to the other to escape. Thus, Stag's Leap.

    Little sitting area that looks up to the “V” in the mountains where Native American legend has it that hunters surrounded a fabled Stag. With bow and arrows drawn, the brave stag jumped from one point to the other to escape. Hence, Stag’s Leap.

    The cottages

    The cottages


    We also toured their new visitor center, which is stunning, and got to sample some choice vintages of their Artemis Cabernet. All that washed down with a couple of the best damn tongue tacos we’ve ever had at a roadside taco truck (props to Shawn for that one). Not bad for a couple days in the Valley!

    Stag's Leap has over a mile of caves for barrels that mimic the map of Napa. So if you know your way around Napa, you'll know your way around the caves. They start right behind the Visitor Center (middle) and extend into the hillside (right).

    Stag’s Leap has over a mile of caves for barrels that mimic the map of Napa. So if you know your way around Napa, you’ll know your way around the caves. They start right behind the Visitor Center (middle) and extend into the hillside (right).

    Tongue tacos with Jim Carey and our friends Shannon and Shawn from Chateau Ste. Michelle.

    Tongue tacos with Jim Carey and our friends Shannon and Shawn from Chateau Ste. Michelle.