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RARECAT - Log

Sharon Kazan Harris
 
March 30, 2017 | Sharon Kazan Harris

RARECAT Champagne in the St Helena Star

in the Napa Valley Register

 

RARECAT Champagne, France ($69)

CATHERINE BUGUE catbugue@gmail.com
 
Mar 27, 2017 Updated Mar 29, 2017

There are many vivacious personalities in the Napa Valley — people who are as unforgettable as their wines -- but one of the most dazzling is Sharon Kazan Harris, owner of RARECAT wines here in St. Helena. Sharon’s stories, such as taking a bus, nonplussed, after receiving a special invitation to Chateau Pavie when she was just 18 or 19, are rapid-fire and intermingled with tips and tricks to living an adventurous and meaningful life. When all this comes with one exquisite wine after another, you almost can’t believe your luck at having found her and RARECAT.

In addition to making a Napa Valley cabernet sauvignon with iconic winemaker Joel Aiken, Sharon makes rosé, a St. Emilion wine, and a Crémant de Bordeaux, in addition to a Champagne. This richly textured and complexly divine Champagne is made in conjunction with Gonet, a highly respected Champagne house founded in 1830. Take a sip, and you will know what it is like to have a life well-lived.

 

Catherine Bugue is the Star’s tasting panel writer. Her weekly pursuit of a good glass of wine provides a nice supply of choices for the Wine of the Week column. If you’d like to submit a Napa Valley wine for this column, please send it to the Napa Valley Wine Academy, 2501 Oak St., Napa, CA 94559.

Time Posted: Mar 30, 2017 at 10:56 AM
Sharon Kazan Harris
 
May 20, 2016 | Sharon Kazan Harris

Summer is Rosé time...some of my favorite pairings

Summer is Rosé Time

My Favorite Rosé Pairings on a Summer Night

Friends and family

Creole Shrimp BBQ on skewers and eatten hot off the grill

Prosciutto wrapped cantaloupe

Goats cheese balls rolled in fresh chopped mint leaves

Jose Andres Spanish pototo chips

Oysters on crushed ice with a side of lemon

I love serving RARECAT Rosé in champagne tulips to highlight the beautiful color.  

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time Posted: May 20, 2016 at 1:16 PM
Jennifer Curry
 
May 16, 2016 | Jennifer Curry

Mid Life Intern!

The rest of my RARECAT Rebooter story started last summer! If you are just chiming into our RARECAT blog page read my last post and you will be up to speed!

After studying WSET Level 3 at the Napa Valley Wine Academy (NVWA), I wanted to immerse myself in the world of wine and make use of my theory knowledge by getting any hands-on experience I could. Being 20+ years out of college I never thought I would do another internship, however I saw it as the best use of my knowledge and time to achieve a lifelong dream! Through a referral by the NVWA I was introduced to Sharon Kazan Harris, Owner and Director of Winemaking at RARECAT Wines! Sharon and I spoke for a few months and realized we could help one another based on our individual areas of expertise. Sharon was certainly the bigger benefactor in our relationship as she created opportunities for me that others dream about. People tell me often that I am living their dream!

My internship started August of 2015 with a focus on development, production, and the launch of a new consulting business called RARECAT Professional, which designs programs for businesses using wine as a business tool! My the internship was very well rounded allowing me to work all areas of an established winery from production, business development, operations, and creating special client experiences! The weekend I arrived from North Carolina I jumped right in and met some special RARECAT clients and helped to pour wine. 

With the early harvest in Napa, I started working almost immediately with our consultant winemakers Joel Aiken for the production of RARECAT's 2015 Old Toll Cabernet, and Rollie Heitz for RARECAT's 2015 Rose'.  The Rose' production was my pet project and for the next six weeks I worked with Rollie and Sharon relating what I had learned in class to the winemaking process.  I sorted, crushed, pressed, racked, pulled samples, blended, and bottled.  I was able to work with and learn from two extremely well respected winemakers in Napa. The 2014 RARECAT Rose' was named Brigitte, after Brigitte Bardot because she was a RARECAT, a woman of such magnificent beauty, a rarity. My internship ended with Sharon's offer to work full time at RARECAT and to eventually put "Jennifer" on the label! I do not look like Brigitte, however Sharon told me I was a true RARECAT and that's good enough for me!

Stay tuned as I talk more about our RARECAT Ambassador program this week and share some great experiences of my trip to Champagne and Bordeaux with Sharon!

 

 

Time Posted: May 16, 2016 at 11:42 AM
Jennifer Curry
 
March 24, 2016 | Jennifer Curry

A RARECAT Rebooter

One of my lifelong dreams was to work at a winery. I didn't know how the story would unfold, however I envisioned harvesting grapes and making wine someday. Every few months for the past 15 years I have taken out that notebook with my life aspirations and check marked what I had accomplished and earmarked future goals.  

In October 2014, I left a very successful property management recruiter position of 14 years. This was not an easy transition for me especially because I intentionally left my job without another one. As a recruiter you never encourage your own candidates to do this, and I was preaching to them and doing the opposite. Everyone is motivated differently. My motivation came from wanting to explore several interests with special attention toward wine and food. I started researching several wine schools and certifications the summer of 2014. I had fundamental knowledge of wine and food from growing up around the restaurant business and my father's wine bar, however never intentionally studied either craft.  

I chose the Napa Valley Wine Academy because of the instructor's credentials and the array of certifications and programs available. I loved that the Academy was in the heart of Napa Valley! My initial goal was simple. I wanted to take my fundamental wine experience and immerse myself in theory knowledge and any hands-on experience for exposure. The NVWA WSET program gave me the jump-start I needed to enter the wine world. My intention mixed with opportunity led me down an exciting wine path that I started to visualize years ago! I made lifelong friends that I traveled abroad with to study wine and currently see on the east and west coasts!  

Starting the WSET program through the NVWA has been one of my most rewarding personal achievements. It was exciting and fulfilling! I didn't know what the next chapter would look like. For the first time in a very long time, I was Ok with that. I was fully immersed and present in this new world I was creating for myself.

I'm excited to share the rest of this story and will soon. My goal is to share my joie de vivre of my world wide wine and food journeys and every so often something that I have checked off on my experience bucket list!

 

Time Posted: Mar 24, 2016 at 10:18 AM
Sharon Kazan Harris
 
February 18, 2016 | Sharon Kazan Harris

How to Have A Fabulous French Getaway In Bordeauxby Kristin Braswell

How to Have A Fabulous French Getaway In Bordeaux
  by Kristin Braswell for Fortune
 

.... " The villa is owned by Sharon Harris, entrepreneur and founder of Rarecat Wines. Harris fell in love with Saint-Emilion when she was 20 years old, and calls her single estate vineyard “a dream come true.” For wine lovers, the Rarecat Saint-Emilion, a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, is not to be missed."

To ready the whole story and find out great tips on what to see and do in Bordeauc, go to:  http://www.forbes.com/sites/kristinbraswell/2016/02/18/how-to-have-a-fabulous-french-getaway-in-bordeaux/#46f8462244ad

Time Posted: Feb 18, 2016 at 6:57 AM
Sharon Kazan Harris
 
February 16, 2016 | Sharon Kazan Harris

The Rarecat of Napa

 

Time Posted: Feb 16, 2016 at 3:31 PM
Sharon Kazan Harris
 
January 12, 2016 | Sharon Kazan Harris

Bordeaux Voted Top Destination by NY Times

Bordeaux Voted Top Destination!

With the lowest euro in years... it's time to visit Bordeaux in 2016!


 

Dear Friends,

NY Times voted Bordeaux one of the top destinations in the world to to visit in 2016 and we couldn't agree more*.  Bordeaux and the region's jewel, St Emilion, are both UNESCO World Heritiage sites.  

RARECAT can arrange your villa stay, private wine guides and chefs, cooking classes, walking tours and much more.  Bordeaux is the perfect destination for food and wine lovers.  Our villa has old-world charm with world-class modern amenities.  Located in the village of St Emilion, you are strolling distance to chateaux, wine shops and restaurants. 

And best of all..... the euro is at its lowest level in 10 years making right now a great time to book RARECAT Villa in St Emilion.    Audrey Club members receive a 20% discount off of listed rates.

Click here for villa details.

 

 

Time Posted: Jan 12, 2016 at 10:41 AM
Sharon Kazan Harris
 
December 30, 2015 | Sharon Kazan Harris

2015: A Very Beautiful Year

Rarecat Wines

 

 

 

Dear Friends,

We would like to thank our RARECAT family and friends for the overwhelming support in 2015!  We have met so many wonderful people this year and laughed more times than one can count.  Life really is wonderful.  We promise to focus on putting beauty in the bottle so you can connect and create special moments with the people you love, cherish, and want to know better.  That is our RARECAT promise.   

RARECAT Wines are sold direct from the winery and thanks to your support we are sold out of most of our wines.  We created the Audrey Club to guarantee our most wonderful clients access to our RARECAT Old Toll Cabernet and to be first on all of our releases.  We recently added several options to give club members more flexibility. 
 
 
2015 Harvest:  Earliest and Smallest and Suberb.... 
Across the Napa Valley, yields were 30 - 70% down from 2014.  Unfortunately, we were on the higher side of those numbers. Shatter hit hillside vineyards heaviest in the spring and that combined with two previous big years, lots of sun and no water… we saw low yields. Warning, we won't have much but it will be beautiful!
Only Female American Vintner producing wine in St Emilion, Bordeaux, France
RARECAT Wines is producing wines in St Emilion.  Our RARECAT St Emilion comes from a single estate vineyard on the plateau calcaire where all the premiere Grand Crus are founded. It is a traditional blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc produced to reflect the magnificent terrior.  After many months of government paperwork, we are thrilled to confirm RARECAT St Emilion will arrive to our shores in January 2016.  We will fill all RARECAT St Emilion orders and allocations first before making it available to our clients.  
Click here to join our allocation, RARECAT St Emilion Allocation.
 
 
NEW: RARECAT Estate Champagne coming this spring - time to celebrate.
RARECAT in partnership with Michel Gonet will offer a special selection RARECAT Champagne.   Our first RARECAT Estate Champagne is a single vineyard, blanc de blanc, vintage brut.  The champagne is produced by Michel Gonet, a family owned champagne house run by the same family since 1802 and bottled specifically for RARECAT.  Our goal is to have this very special champagne in the US by April and in time to share at our RARECAT Trunk Shows.  The RARECAT Champagne will only be available to purchase directly from the winery in California.  
Click here to join our Champagne Allocation:  RARECAT Champagne.  
 
 
RARECAT Professional - connection you to those you want to meet.
Helping corporations connect to their clients and stake-holders.
RARECAT is the only winery focused on using wine as a business tool and helping corporations build connections with clients and stakeholders. Our corporate consulting program was officially launched in the Fall.  We have had overwhelming interest in creating and providing professional wine seminars and events.  We have worked with consulting firms, banks, major law corporations, tech companies and several professional organizations providing fun, entertaining, and educational programs.  Having the winemaker and owner at the seminar elevates the special nature of events, creating programs highly valued by companies.  Our seminar series include Wine for Business 101, Don't Give Up the Wine List, and French Wine 101 for Executives.   Click here for more information about RARECAT Professional or call Sharon directly at 650-464-9408 to discuss bringing RARECAT Professional to your company.
 
 
Audrey Club - more options for our beloved club members.
We continue to focus on putting beauty in the bottle so our clients can focus on enjoying and sharing wines with the people they love.  We believe wine is the most powerful tool to connect people to each other.  Our Audrey Club is filled with marvelously interesting, very funny, smart, successful, wonderful wine lovers.  Our goal in 2016 is encouraging our RARECAT family to use our Audrey Club parties as excuses to come visit us in Napa!  
           Mark You Calendars:
  April 23rd, 2016:  Tunnel of Love Party - featuring our RARECAT Rosé and RARECAT Champagne
  October 1st, 2016:  Harvest Release Party and What is Beauty? - featuring our RARECAT Old Toll Cabernet
 
PS….
Our Audrey Club members get 20% off a stay at RARECAT Villa St Emilion.  Click RARECAT Villa for more information. Contact sharon@rarecatwines.com for availability.
 
RARECAT Trunk Shows - wonderful way to try and buy wines.
RARECAT will hit the road in April and May of 2016 to share our special, limited production wines.  Our RARECAT Trunk Shows are hosted by friends of RARECAT Wines, always in beautiful private locations.  Wine lovers are invited to come, try and able to buy wines.  It is a lovely way to discover beautiful wines in a convivial, fun, private setting.  If you are interested in hosting a trunk show, please email sharon@rarecatwines.com about details.
 

New Additions to the Family

Jennifer Curry

Jennifer joined RARECAT in August 2015 as an intern.  Jennifer quit her position as a real estate executive recruiter to pursue her passion for wine.  She studied at the Napa Valley Wine Academy, and is a WSET Level 3 candidate.  During her internship, Jennifer oversaw our RARECAT Rosé project from harvest through bottling. Jennifer quickly became family and it would be impossible to have her leave RARECAT.  She has agreed to continue working for RARECAT from her home in North Carolina and Napa Valley focusing on client experiences and business development.  In her honor, we have named our 2015 RARECAT Rosé, "Jennifer" - she is a true rare cat and has touched our hearts and the hearts of many of our clients... Bienvenue "JE-ni-fur”.  

Click here to join our RARECAT Rosé allocation, Simply Pink Allocation Club.
 
 
Buddy
If you visited RARECAT this summer or fall, you probably met Buddy - our golden labrador puppy.  He was often found stealing things out of people's purses, jumping in the fountain, and running through the barn wet or raiding the garbage cans.  We think he has as many admirers as our wines.  We can now officially confirm Buddy is in training to be a well-behaved dog!  Although to be honest, he is resisting and if you visit in 2016 don't expect miracles.  He is however still adorable....
 
 
 
 


 

 
Time Posted: Dec 30, 2015 at 10:59 AM
Sharon Kazan Harris
 
December 18, 2015 | Sharon Kazan Harris

Walk of awe

L'Intendant

Zoom in on the bottles, 5 floors of beautiful Bordeaux wines.  L'Intendant is located in the center of Bordeaux and a must see wine story for any wine collector.

 

Time Posted: Dec 18, 2015 at 1:54 PM
Sharon Kazan Harris
 
December 17, 2015 | Sharon Kazan Harris

Caught Red Handed

A picture says a thousand words...

Time Posted: Dec 17, 2015 at 9:21 PM