Good Fruit Grower

February 1

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DREAM Victor Palencia's Monarcha wines form a butterfly when labels are matched together. His wines received gold medals in their first competition. "I wanted to own a winery someday." Palencia wants his wine brand to tell about his Mexican roots and his story of hard work, inspiration, and dreams. His upper-tier label, called Palencia Winery, features a line drawing of his father and a shovel. "For a farmer, a shovel is the key to the land and represents hard work," he said. "Farmers have a love of the land and hard work." The initial release for Palencia Winery is a Cabernet Sauvignon made from Red Mountain grapes and Sauvignon Blanc wine from Yakima Valley. The wines retail for $40 and $18, respectively. His lower-tier brand is Vino la Monarcha, or Monarch wine, named after the Monarch butterfly that begins its massive migration in his home state of Michoacán and flies to Canada. "I want the wine to inspire people to go for it and let their dreams fly," Palencia said. "When I sell a bottle of Monarcha wine, I picture that the butterfly has landed." Monarcha wines include a Chardonnay, dry Pinot Noir rosé, a Merlot-based blend, and a Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend. Some wines have a right butterfly wing, some a left. When put together, the wings form a complete butterfly. Monarcha wines retail for $14 per bottle. Palencia is releasing two new wines this spring. One is called Albañil, which means mason worker, the job his father had in Mexico. Albañil is a Rhone blend of Grenache, Mourvédre, and Syrah. The other wine is made from the white variety Alvarinho. One of Palencia's goals for his winery is to reach the Hispanic market. Data shows that Millennial wine drinkers—those born from the 1980s to 2000s—are a key market segment fueling the nation's increased wine consumption. "A lot of those Millennials are Latinos that are drinking Gallo's Moscato sweet wines," he said. "I want to reach that market and encourage them to drink local wines." —Victor Palencia He plans to use nontraditional ways to tap into the Latino market—radio advertising, social media, promoting the use of Palencia Winery gift cards, supplying wines to local restaurants via kegs, and pairing his wines with Mexican food, such as carnitas with Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay with tomatillo salsa, and Sauvignon Blanc with ceviche. "My mother gave me the confidence to dream, and my father showed me hard work," he said, both traits that he has adopted. "I'm like a child living in a field of dreams." atch a video of our interview with Victor Palencia at www.goodfruit. com. W • PIN-UP winemakers ictor Palencia of Palencia Wine Company has another accomplishment to add to his list—Mr. July. Palencia is one of a dozen men of Washington's wine industry featured in the 2014 calendar produced by WineStyle, owned by writer and photographer Kathy Kongelbak. He joins an impressive list of winemakers, including: Danny Gordon, Tamarak Cellars, Walla Walla Justin Neufeld, Gilbert Cellars and JB Neufeld, Yakima John Patterson, Patterson Cellars, Woodinville Mitch Venohr, Fidelitas Wines, Red Mountain Caleb Foster, Caleb's Wines, Walla Walla Darby English, Darby Winery, Woodinville Brendon Townshend, Townshend Cellar, Greenbluff John Bookwalter, Bookwalter Winery, Richland Dr. Don Wood, Icicle Ridge Winery, Peshastin V Ryan Crane, Kerloo Cellars, Walla Walla Gordon Taylor, Davenlore Winery, Prosser This is the second time Palencia has been featured in Kongelbak's annual calendar. Calendars can be purchased at the WineStyleWA shop on —M. Hansen GOOD FRUIT GROWER FEBRUARY 1, 2014 29

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