Triangle Wine Experience: Local shops host wine makers

Steve Reynolds of Reynolds Family Vineyards pours at Taylor's Wine Shop in Raleigh.

Steve Reynolds of Reynolds Family Vineyards pours at Taylor's Wine Shop in Raleigh.

By Jennifer Primrose & Dathan Kazsuk

The Frankie Lemmon School and Developmental Center has been providing life-changing education and support for children with special needs starting all the way back to 1965 as the Hudson Memorial Kindergarten for Mentally Retarded Children.

And today, community members, both locally and abroad, have helped make this school what it is today. A safe haven for disabled children to receive the education they so rightfully deserve.

Some of the funds that help the foundation come once a year in the form of a weekend-long wine extravaganza – the Triangle Wine Experience. From free wine tastings, wine dinners with local chefs and winemakers as well as the main Gala, TWE has raised millions of dollars the school. And one of the lesser known, but still highly entertaining events is the annual wine shop tastings.

Related: 2017 Triangle Wine Experience: Sip, Shop 'n Sign

During this event, local wine shops bring in some heavy hitters in the wine world to pour some wine typically not available in the state. This is your chance to stop by your local wine shop and savor some hefty West Coast wines and hear about them straight from the mouth of the owners or winemakers.

To see the complete schedule, click here.

This year seven local bottle shops will feature roughly 11 winemakers pouring from January 30 to February 2. One of the shops, Falls Village Wine and Beer, will be participating in the event for the first time. “I am very excited to host my first event with the Triangle Wine Experience,” says Jim Soffe, who opened his store this past November. “I have taken part in the event in some way or another for quite a while now – with wine dinners or pouring at the Gala – and have made many good friends doing so,” he says.

Related: New Wine & Beer Shop Opens in Falls Village Shopping Center

For his first time around, Soffe landed Trent Moffet of Oregon’s Moffet Vineyards. Soffe admits that during his time in the restaurant business he has bought and sold Moffet wines many times in the past. “Trent and I have also hit the streets of Raleigh a few times selling his wines, so I’ve gotten to know him (well)” he says.

Taylor Cash, right, of Taylor's Wine Shop in Raleigh at the 2017 TWE Gala.

While Soffe is new to the playing field, at least for this event, Taylor Cash of Taylor’s Wine Shop in Raleigh is a veteran in the game. Cash has been hosting winemakers in his shop for the past 13 years.

"We are excited about a lot of the winemakers that come to our shop, as many of them are rock stars of wine making," says Cash. But if he had to pick a favorite, it would have to be Steve Reynolds of Reynolds Family Winery. "His was the first wine dinner I had been to and the first dinner I hosted for Triangle Wine Experience. He has  been to our shop many times since and has been a big supporter of ours," he says.

We personally know this, as for the past several years, we've gotten to know more and more about Reynolds as he's always one to chat about his wines and love for Tequila while pouring some of his wines at Taylor's.