Cardella Winery celebrates with live music at its Fall Release on Oct. 30, from noon until 3 p.m. Friends of Cardella Winery will sample new wines for the season while enjoying pizza and kettle corn.

The focus will be on the winery’s Amador County Zinfandel. Wine club members will pick up the fall wine club shipment. Members receive two free admission tickets.

Cardella, our local westside winery, is a family-owned boutique winery “located in the heart of the San Joaquin Valley.” The Cardella family recalls that in 1902 Carlo Cardella emigrated from Italy’s Tuscan Region. The Firebaugh family carries on their ancestral passion for food and wine.

Winemaker Joseph Magdeleno and Cellar Manager Peter Vasquez offered a respite from the COVID lockdown by hosting virtual wine tastings. All who participated enjoyed virtual companionship and learned a great deal about grapes and wines while participating in fun contests.

Cardella staff is anticipating lovely autumn weather for their release celebration. Wine club members will have an opportunity to purchase special deals that will be available only during this event.

The Fall Release is open to everyone. Extra tickets for members and non-wine club members can purchase online for $30 before the event. Log on to and click on “Buy Tickets.”

Tickets will be $35 on the day of the event. Please note: Physical tickets will not be mailed. A list of members’ reservations and online ticket purchasers will be checked at the entrance.

Peter reports that the beginning of the harvest season set a great pace. Syrah, Teroldego, Ruby Cabernet, Chenin Blanc and Moscato are just a few of the lots brought during the beginning of harvest. Peter reports, “Clusters are smaller across the board but packed with flavor and color. Small lots have been bottled such as skin-fermented Pinot Grigio in between all the madness.”

A fellow named Frederick on TripAdvisor attests, “Mendota is not the place you expect to find fine wine. At the end of a farm road halfway between there and I5 even more so. Yet that is what is waiting for you at Cardella Winery.”

The winery reminds us, “We have beautiful grounds, great wine, and a venue that makes you feel like you’re in Italy. Whether it is a wedding, bridal shower, or a car club getaway, we hope to host you soon!”

For events or wine tasting by appointment only call (559) 283-5768. For venue inquiries contact

Cardella Winery is a member of the Fresno County Wine Journey where they pour at Tap and Cellar on Bedford Avenue in Fresno. That next event is on Nov. 12 and 13. The $20 wristband purchased in advance is good for both Saturday and Sunday. Wristbands are slightly higher at the door of any participating locations. See for more information and a map of that event.

Fresno County Wine Journey suggests that the spirit of seasons calls for Apple Cider Sangria. The fall twist on this conventional recipe uses white wine and fall fruits. They call it “refreshing and cozy all in one.”

To create this delight, chop two large apples, one large orange, and one pear. Add to a punch bowl with one cup of frozen cranberries, ¼ cup of lemon juice and three cinnamon sticks. Stir in two cups of spiced apple cider and one bottle of Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay. Serve over ice on a sunny fall day or holiday gathering.

Pick up wine for Apple Cider Sangria and all holiday wine needs at the Fall Release on Oct. 30. Cardella staff says, “We hope to see you there.”

Wine members, please RSVP to ensure preparations. For more information call (559) 210-4395. Cardella Winery is located at 41424 West Panoche Road, Mendota.

(Janet Miller is a freelance writer specializing in family faith. She offers Family Prayers and Activities: Weekly Guides o compact disc for families to explore the Bible together. Email

Janet Miller

Janet Miller is a freelance writer specializing in family faith. She offers Family Prayers and Activities: Weekly Guides on compact disc for families to explore the Bible together. Email