This Q&A I did with Candice originally appeared on Paso Robles Daily News.
My wife and I recently headed to Riverstar Vineyards when a friend said she had recently been there and enjoyed the experience. It’s been several years since we had last been and while there met the new owners including the daughter, now assistant winemaker, Candice Reinertson. We had a very enjoyable experience and thought it would be interesting to do a Q&A to get to know them better. Enjoy!
Matt: When did you and your family take over at Riverstar Vineyards?
Candice: March 2016
Matt: How many cases are you producing each year?
Candice: About 1,500
Matt: How many acres of vines do you have?
Matt: If you weren’t in the wine industry, what would you be doing?
Candice: High School Environmental Science Teacher
Matt: What interests/ hobbies do you have outside of the wine world?
Candice: Cooking, hiking, camping, spending time with my nieces & nephews
Matt: What is your favorite aspect of the wine business?
Candice: I love watching people fall in love with a wine for the first time, and honestly just sharing a laugh with whoever happens to come into my tasting room!
Matt: How about least favorite?
Candice: Tax time
Matt: How long have you been in the industry?
Candice: 3 years
Matt: What different parts of the wine industry have you worked in?
Candice: Bartending/serving, wine club, managing, accounting, and currently assistant winemaking
Matt: Where are you from originally?
Candice: Woodside, CA
Matt: How long have you been in the Paso Robles area?
Candice: 3 years
Matt: How many vintages have you worked?
Matt: What was your first job in the industry?
Candice: I started as a hostess in Colorado when I was in college
Matt: What is your favorite wine region not including Paso Robles?
Candice: Santa Lucia Highlands
Matt: What’s your current favorite wine/ variety/ winery to drink?
Candice: I’ve been loving Tolosa Winery’s Pinot Noir
Matt: What is your first wine memory?
Candice: I remember being so young and smelling my dad’s merlot and hating it! Oh how times have changed!
Matt: Favorite part about Paso?
Candice: The sense of community & the focus on supporting small, local business
Matt: Least favorite part about Paso?
Candice: The heat
Matt: Where do you see the industry in the Paso Robles region going? Do you see any interesting new trends or directions?
Candice: I see nothing but growth as more and more people visit this region, then return back with friends & family.
Matt: When you’re not drinking wine, what’s in your glass?
Candice: Tequila or Gin
Matt: What are some of your favorite food and wine pairings?
Candice: I love a good sauvignon blanc or dry riesling with a spicy Mexican or Thai dish. We cook a lot in my house and pairing wine is half the fun of it.
Matt: Why do you think Paso Robles has become such a big wine destination?
Candice: The small town feel & friendly competition, which has resulted in more amazing wines being produced all over the appellation