Saturday, June 5

ThursdayDrive: Toad Hollow Vineyard

Thanks to being allergic to whatever "good" bacteria turns grapes into nectar of the gods, I'm not and have never claimed to be a wine connoisseur. The extent of my "expertise" is white for fish, red for lasagna, and only champagne produced in the Champagne region of France can be labeled as such. (Made anywhere else, it's simply "sparkling wine".)

However, I do love interesting labels.

At a political fundraiser some years ago, I couldn't help giggling at the frog on the label of a Toad Hollow Vineyard Chardonnay (1995). The bartender was kind enough to set aside an empty bottle which, until the other day, has been residing on a shelf in my dining room.

Naturally I can't personally vouch for the quality of Toad Hollow's wines, but the fact that the vineyard was founded in 1994 and is still in business says it takes wine making seriously enough to have won several awards in spite of its whimsical labels, like the one at right for its crisp and fruity sparkling Risqué made from 100% Mauzac.

Labels as whimsical (and enchanting) as the story of its founding.

According to the "history" on THV's website, Toad Hollow was the brainchild of two old friends named Dr. Toad and The Dancing Badger who had "retired, more or less" to a Hollow overlooking the Russian River near Healdsburg, Calif.:
"This natural pairing—Dr. Toad, a man known around the neighborhood as one who could sell sand to a Sheik, as well as a consummate storyteller…he would be in charge of marketing; while Mr. Badger, a gentleman extraordinaire, who had honed his palate during visits to chateaux, whilst dancing for kings…would craft the wine."
If you don't live in the Healdsburg area, THV wines are sold in stores in some U.S. metropolitan cities; they can also be ordered on the website. But if like me you aren't a wine drinker, you can wow friends and family with THV's funky labels via posters, T-shirts and caps available at the online General Store.

More about:
Toad Hollow Vineyard

The Legend of Toad Hollow Vineyard

TVH General Store

Have a great day!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic


pinkpackrat said...

I am lovin that little toad--Keep thinking he'll drink the wine and turn into a handsome prince LOL-- hope the wine is as good as the label

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Love the toad!

Debby said...

This is a great post and I love the labels. That toad is just the best.

JamaGenie said...

pinkpackrat, the toad does "drink" the wine on THV's homepage, but I couldn't figure out how to keep the animation here.

Frieda Babbley said...

I love their bottles. I'm a bottle collector myself, for the labels. I've tried taking labels off to put in a wine journal, but I have yet to be able to do it correctly. I've enjoyed the toad hollow wines now and again. Not very often. Gorgeous labels.

Awesome post JamaGenie.

JamaGenie said...

Frieda, I've never been able to remove labels from wine bottles either! Wonder what the trick is...

viridian said...

Just a note: Postcard friendship Friday continues at:

I'm having a giveaway at;

JamaGenie said...

Thanks for the reminder about PFF. I haven't forgotten, just haven't had anything to contribute lately. )-:

Shirley Anderson said...

Love the labels! Great post, Jama. Think I'll give it a Tweet.

PinkPackRat, it's you who has to drink the wine. After a couple of bottles, that toad will indeed, appear to you as a prince. Wine's magical that way. :)