Ficklin Vineyards, America’s oldest port winery, established in 1946, recently received a request from the U.S. Embassy in London for their award-winning port to serve at upcoming Embassy dinners.
From Ficklin Vineyards’ remote location in Madera County, Winemaker and President Peter Ficklin was happy to hear his ports are drawing interest from across the pond. “The UK has a long and valued history in the development and traditions of Port wine,” said Ficklin. “We consider this a special acknowledgement of our premium quality.”
Ficklin Vineyards received the request from Gerry Kaufmann of the Embassy’s cultural division, expressing the desire of the U.S. Embassy in London to serve Ficklin Port at their dinners. Then the hard work began to meet regulations to ship Ficklin Vineyards’ Old Vine Tinta and Aged 10 Years Tawny Port to the Embassy.
In addition to the U.S. Embassy, the process also involved the U.S.DA, Foreign Agricultural Service, the California Wine Institute, and the Culinary Diplomacy Project.
The Embassy’s interest in obtaining Ficklin Port in the UK is not isolated. Ficklin will be meeting with UK distributors visiting the U.S. through the California Wine Institute in October to discuss their interest in carrying the brand. “We’re aware Ficklin Vineyards’ ports are well known and it’s exciting to see that awareness continue to grow,” Ficklin said. “We’ll be meeting to determine whether it may be time to begin exporting.”
Ficklin Vineyards sees guests in their Tasting Room on Avenue 7 and Road 30 in rural Madera County from all over the world. During September, they hosted tours for groups from Australia, Canada, Japan, China, and Portugal.
Guests at Ficklin Vineyards share photos from their travels where they run across Ficklin Vineyards port, even though it is not currently distributed in those locations. Seems their Port is sometimes one of the special U.S. gift items tucked into suitcases when travelers fly abroad.
Ficklin said, “I hope to one day be as well-traveled as Ficklin port.”