Telaya News
July 25th, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Wine-derful Boise

We are transplants to Boise, but we have fallen head over heels for the valley and all that it has to offer. Skiing in the winter, river running in the summer, biking all year long, not to mention how stunningly beautiful it is. With all of these wonderful reasons it is easy to choose to stay, but more importantly we have met the most wonderful people in this amazing place. Some of our friends have been working on their own versions of why Boise is such great place, we would love to share them with you.

Check on these links to see some of the great things Boise has to offer, and perhaps learn a little bit about our amazing city and state.

Love Letters to Boise - Jess Flynn via The Huffington Post

If you have another article, picture, or video of our wonderful home please share it with us. You can share it directly to the website, or to any of our social media outlets. We can’t wait to hear why you love Boise and Idaho.


June 12th, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

How to Wine Taste

Every week we have different people come through the winery from many paths of life. Some are avid wine tasters and travel the globe over looking for new and interesting wines and for others it is their first time in a tasting room. With those novices in mind, as well as those experts who are always looking for more information, today we want to focus on how you should go about wine tasting.

First off you should wear comfortable clothing and shoes. You might get a surprise and get to go into the vineyards (not so much in our urban winery setting, but elsewhere it is very possible), might get a tour of the production facility, or you might spend more time on your feet than you would expect. Also in the morning, don’t load on the cologne or perfume. We appreciate how wonderful you smell, but you might have trouble picking up on all of the wonderful aromas in your wine glass.

When you get to the winery or tasting room don’t be afraid to use the dump bucket or spittoon. You don’t have to consume all of the wine that is poured for you in order to taste it. If you consider yourself a light weight and are out at a tasting to really learn about the wines and winery, don’t be embarrassed to spit. In the process make sure you really move the wine around your mouth and even slurp it a little bit so you can get all of the flavors around your mouth to get the full flavor and mouth feel of the wine. Just a disclaimer I would recommend practicing at home or not being too vigorous the first few times you spit into a spittoon, splashing is still possible in those small containers.

If you are lucky enough to get a barrel tasting at a winery there are a couple of tips that the person who is pouring might appreciate. When the person who is pouring brings the wine thief out of the barrel either hand your glass to them, or hold it close to their glass. Wine thieves work great, but drip. If you get too much wine in your glass or want to spit and don’t have a spittoon, find a drain on the floor and spit or dump into it. The more accurate you can be the better. Making wine requires a lot of cleanliness, so the least amount of cleanup needed for an impromptu tasting in the barrel room, the more you will be appreciated.

During a tasting ask questions. Don’t be embarrassed by how little you know and never assume the question might be too complicated. Most wineries are small businesses and the person serving your wine probably has helped in production as well – on the bottling line, in the cellar, maybe even in the vineyards! The more questions we are asked the more we can ensure you are having a great time with us and our wines.

If you have any other questions about wine tasting or other wine related questions, please send them our way! We would love to enhance your education with wine.

Earl Thief


May 29th, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Magnets in Wine Making


Photo Taken by Sam Palmer

Photo Taken by Sam Palmer

Don Kavanaugh wrote a very interesting article on Wine-Search this week about the use of magnetized particles and speeding up the process of making Champagne. The research done on this method of wine making takes a little explanation.

When making Champagne, fermentation of grapes into wine and bottling are much like other wine productions. At the bottling stage for sparkling wines the winemaker adds a sugar and yeast liquid that will sit in bottle and re-ferment creating all of the wonderful carbonation that Champagne is known for. The bottle then sits, sometimes for years, with the yeast in it until it goes through the riddling process. Riddling is the slow process of turning bottle while slowly moving them from a horizontal storage position to a vertical position where the bottle is stored on its head. This allows the yeast to settle in the neck of the bottle and often takes at least a month to do correctly. The neck of the bottle is then frozen and the bottle opened. The frozen part with the dead yeast cells is removed so the wine remains clear, the Champagne is immediately re-corked so that little to no carbonation is lost.

The new research studied how to settle the yeast in the neck of the bottle more quickly – this would cut down on labor costs, time costs, and possibly the consistency of clarity. A team at the University of Ljubljana found a way to attach magnetic nanoparticles to the yeast, and then use magnets to pull all of those yeast particles into the neck of the bottle. Instead of up to or more than a month, the riddling process can take less than 20 minutes!

The studies also took into affect comparative sensory tests, to make sure the magnetization of the yeast did not affect the mouth feel, bubble size, flavor, or aroma for a consumer. Even with these precautions, we must start to wonder how these advances in microbiology and chemistry change our winemaking techniques and the overall wine we are making? Do you think our wines should remain purely made in the old-world style, with little to no testing, no filtering, no fining, etc.? Or should we use all of these new tools that have been made available to us through scientific discovery?

If you have questions or would like to know more about these winemaking techniques, come in on Friday and Saturday between 12:00-6:00 to chat with Hailey about sparkling wine production. Or you can always facebook and email us.


May 20th, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Is Wine Gluten Free?

Several friends have been diagnosed with gluten sensitivities and even our own Carrie has her own battle with gluten. With the question of gluten free foods and clean eating, we stumbled upon a question, is all wine gluten free?

The most basic “recipe” for wine involves just two ingredients, wine and yeast. That’s it! So simple, yet it makes such a wonderful and complex product… but that is where things get complicated. The aging and polishing of the wine is where gluten might be introduced. Yes! That’s right, gluten might be introduced into the winemaking process, but don’t fear my gluten free friends, it is extremely uncommon and in very low levels.

Gluten can be introduced into wines in two ways, some wineries make a paste with flour to help seal up leaks in the joints between the barrel head and the staves (some wineries used to purchase barrels that had been treated like this, but the practice has become obsolete), when wine is aged in that barrel it comes into contact with the paste and thus gluten is introduced into the wine. One other but even more rare instance, is when gluten is used as a fining agent. This is a very unlikely way to have gluten become an issue because fining is a process where protein is introduced to the wine and it collects other particles that then make the protein heavy and sink to the bottom. The wine is then siphoned off of the heavy stuff. That means the gluten would collect other particles and sink to the bottom of a vessel and be left with other unwanted parts of the wine, which would not be reintroduced into the wine.

When aging in barrels with a gluten paste or using gluten as a fining agent, the tests that have been done on wine to measure the presence of gluten have shown that if there is any present it is only about 10ppm, and the legal threshold to claim a product is gluten free is 20ppm.

If you have a gluten intolerance or celiacs and need to make sure you are not consuming any gluten, ask some key questions before purchasing a wine:

1. Has this wine been aged in oak?

2. What kind of fining agents do you use in your winemaking process?

Asking these questions will allow you to make an educated decision about whether the wine you want to consume is gluten free or most likely gluten free. If a wine is aged in oak, but there are fining processes used in wine making… then the gluten probably has dropped out and is at less than 10ppm. And while you’re asking these questions to be sure the wine is safe for your body to consume, you will also sound like you know a ton about the winemaking process.

Telaya wines are made with barrels that have not been treated with flour paste, and we do not use gluten in our fining processes. To Carrie and all of you other gluten free warriors out there, to your journey my friends!


April 23rd, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Best of Treasure Valley – Vote Now!

Telaya has been nominated for Best Local Winery in the Idaho Statesman Best of the Treasure Valley 2014!

Visit this link to vote for your favorite restaurants, wineries, parks, and so much more!

We are so lucky to work with many of these wonderful businesses: ForkCafe VicinoMai Thai, Gino’s, BarbacoaBodovinoThe Riverside HotelIdaho StampedeR Grey GalleryBoise CoOpWhole FoodsSavor Idaho, and so many others that were nominated. If you want to learn any more about the wonderful businesses on this list, just click on their name and a new page will open to their website. Some of these restaurants are award winning and have James Beard Nominated Chefs! We are so lucky to live in such a dynamic and beautiful place. Let’s all vote for the best local businesses that we have! We can’t wait to find out who wins in all of the categories of the Best of the Treasure Valley. Let us know what some of your favorites are.


April 8th, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Idaho Wines – Not Made with Potatoes!

Idaho is a great state to make wine. Lots of people joke that we must make our wine out of potatoes… we don’t. We make beautiful wines out of grapes. From the vineyard and into the winery, wines made in Idaho are gaining recognition. At the Great Northwest Wine Competition last week, there were several Idaho wineries included and many medalists from Idaho. Out of the over 900 wine entries, 3 were from Telaya.

Telaya submitted 3 wines, and received 3 silver medals. We are so excited to be recognized by Great Northwest Wines, and glad to see that Idaho overall received some great reviews. The full results of the competition should be published soon. Keep an eye on the Great Northwest Wine website to stay up to date.

If you don’t believe the Idaho Wine Industry is well on its way to becoming as famous as our potatoes, check out this short video… maybe it will change your mind!


April 3rd, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Spring in the Vineyard

We get a lot of people that ask us, “What is going on in the vineyard?” Throughout the year the answer changes and during winter we usually answer, “Not a whole lot…”

Between February and April, depending on how harsh the winter is and what the weather for spring might be like in a particular area, pruning begins. All of the vineyards we work with hand prune. This means a fairly sizeable group of people (15-50 depending on the size of the vineyard) go out into a vineyard and cut off last years shoots. They space out the shoots that they leave, and cut them off at only a few inches in length.

Different varietals have different pruning needs. Some of the shoots need to be left longer, some need to be shorter. Some varietals have suckers that grow from the root system that are typically cut near the base every year. Certain varietals have different thresh holds for weather and freezing, and so need to be pruned at different times.

The next thing to look for in the vineyard is woolly buds. The buds start to look like they have wool growing on them and this means they are getting ready to wake up and start making beautiful fruit! Let us know if you’re in the vineyard, and what you are seeing.

COMMENTS | News, Vineyards |

March 28th, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Edible Idaho South – Spring 2014

Have you gotten your copy of Edible Idaho South? There are some true nuggets in the Spring 2014 issue.

A six page spread in State & Lemp; Guy Hand wrote the piece and took the photos. The two page montage is worthy of framing and hanging on any aspiring chefs kitchen wall. The story is a great one about following a dream, and doing what you enjoy. We are so glad we get to work with such passionate and fun people.

Flip a couple of pages further and there is a great story, This Thing We Do: 44th Street Winery. We were happy to talk about the great people that come together in the space we call home and make and share wonderful wine.

Just another couple of pages leads you to the Craft Cocktail Conundrum. Several of our favorite bar tenders and drink mixers from Boise are mentioned in this article, especially Michael Reed of Mai Thai and Cameron Lumsden of Fork. We are again, so lucky to work with people that are so passionate about what they do and bringing people the highest quality, hand crafted product possible.

Check out the virtual edition of Edible Idaho South, to make sure you’re not missing a thing about great cuisine in Idaho.


March 18th, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Oak Barrels and What They Do

New vs. Used, French vs. American, and some other tidbits about barrels that you might not have known.

French vs. American Oak

In the wine world, the terms “French oak” and “American Oak” are used quite often.  These unique types of oak are referring to the barrels in which is aged.  Wine barrels are made from white oak trees, most popularly the French oak – Quercus robur – and the American oak – Quecus alba.  Both of these are white oaks with very different flavor profiles and grain structure.

When wine is aged in oak, it ‘soaks up’ flavor from the barrels.  American oak is known to give off vanilla, caramel, and sometimes coconut. French oak is known to give off more subtle and spicy flavors – our favorite ones give off some bacon and salami aromas in our wines. These differences in flavor and aroma additions may be caused by the difference in grain between the French and American oak or perhaps by the seasoning process.

When a tree is harvested for wine barrels it is cut into staves and then put outside to season for at least a year. Just letting the air and weather hit the wood with all the elements possible. Choosing between French and American oak can be because of the flavor and aroma compounds that are added to the wine, but  cost may also be a factor. An American oak barrel generally runs somewhere around $600 while the French oak barrels are around $1300.

The Difference between New and Used Barrels

Many people are surprised to find out barrels can be used through many vintages before they turn into someone’s pot holder or furniture.  Why?  Think of chewing gum.  The first bite of gum produces strong, robust flavors, but each subsequent bite brings less and less flavor until the gum has almost no flavor at all.

The same concept applies to wine barrels, a new oak barrel will deliver a much stronger flavor than a used oak barrel.  Because of this, winemakers are continually striving to find the perfect balance of new and used oak, and that ‘perfect balance’ is determined by the winemaker, their style, and the profile they’re going for. It’s not uncommon for a wine to spend half of the time in new oak and half in used oak, or all of its time in one or the other. Ultimately, both new barrels and used barrels are very important to the winemaking process.

New Oak or used, French or American, the Oak chosen is dependent upon the winemaker’s preference and the profile they want their wine to have. Outstanding wine can be produced in both French Oak and American Oak Barrels. At Telaya we use 100% French oak because stylistically we want to produce dynamic wines, and French Oak enables more fruit flavors to come out in the wine with more of those brooding spice notes to come out in the aromas. We also use a balance of new and used oak to impart the different flavors that will come through by using a combination of new and used oak. Then in the blending process the fruit and spice come together to create great wines.

Barrel Room


March 12th, 2014 by Telaya Wine Co.

Spring Release – 2014

This past weekend, we had a beautiful Spring Release party and are so glad that many of our club members could make it. Thank you to those of you who came, and hopefully those who couldn’t will be able to attend next time.

We had so much fun creating “la playa” for all of our guests. As most of you know, the name Telaya comes from a combination of the words Tetons – for the Grand Tetons mountain range – and playa – which is Spanish for beach. Both of these places  are areas of contentment, enjoyment, and relaxation. Our hope with this party was to create that calm, but fun, environment for all of those attending.

As always, we had a little surprise. We hope everyone enjoyed the hula and felt like they were on a mini-vacation!

Aumau Hula