Napa Valley Vintners & Michelin Guide 2016 Dinner

As a commercial photographer with a focus on food and wine in Napa and Sonoma, my work allows me to capture some of the best cuisine and vino the area has to offer. And what could be better than working with The Napa Valley VintnersThomas Keller and Bouchon Bistro in Yountville? After the successful opening of The French Laundry in 1998, Keller opened this French bistro in 2002, and it has become a world-renowned eatery. There is a symbiotic relationship between the wine and cuisine in Napa. Each one elevates the other, and the relationship relies on the success of each other. This partnership was celebrated when The Michelin Guide hosted a dinner for the Napa Valley Vintners prior to their 2016 Summit at Chef Keller’s iconic bistro, and I was there to photograph the event.  For a food and wine lover like myself, this was a great honor.  I wish you could have been there to feel the energy in the room and to experience the smells emanating from the kitchen. Chef Keller and his staff were extremely gracious and hospitable. This is a night I’ll never forget, and as 2016 comes to a close, it’s an assignment I’m extremely proud of and humbled by.

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Somm Journal – Wente Vineyards

As a photographer based in Napa, I have a love affair with all things food and wine. From enjoying the flavors the valley has to offer, and then being able to photograph them, I’m a pretty fortunate guy. My relationship with Somm Journal allows me to do just that all over California.  For the recent October/November 2015 issue I captured images in Livermore Valley of Winemaker Karl Wente of Wente Vineyards.

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The Wente Family has such a rich history in the Livermore Valley. Known as the First Family of Chardonnay, their family has owned and operated the vineyard for five generations. They are known as the oldest consistently operating winery in the nation. I love their philosophy about the stewardship of their land and their belief in sustainable ecology. Don’t take it from me, read the entire story. It’s an inspiring story of the land, winemaking and family, and it was so great to be the one to shoot the images. In addition to the featured photos in the issue, I’m sharing some of my favorites of the day. I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed capturing them.Alexander_Rubin_Photography_Napa_Editorial_Wine_Photographer_Wente_Vineyards_0007

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Somm Journal | April 2015

We had a very busy spring and 3 different eiotirial shoots in the April issue of the SOMM Journal.  The first was a shoot of Master Sommeliers Robert Bath and Tim Gaiser at the Culinary Institute of America In St. Helena.  They tasted and evaluated 47 different Australian Sharaz’s.  Next was a story the amazing food an wine event Flavor Napa Valley that featured among many other Iron Chef Morimoto.  The third was a blind tasting event featuring Andrea Robinson one of only 21 female Master Sommeliers in the world.

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The SOMM Journal | October 2014

​Last month, I​ had the fortune to shoot at the esteemed Jardiniere Restaurant, home to culinary legend Traci Des Jardins​​​, f​or ​the upcoming edition of ​The SOMM Journal.  ​The article features ​Jennifer Gomez​,​ the ​Wi​ne ​D​irector for San Francisco’s Jardiniere restaurant and Graham’s Six Grapes Old Vine Special Edition​.​

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Tuscany Italy

In May I did a shoot for Branca International in Tuscany, Italy.  Branca International is the maker of Fernet Branca, which many of you foodies out there have sipped on after a delicious meal.  Villa Branca is in the heart of Tuscany’s Chianti Region.   Branca makes Chianti Classico and hearty Tuscan Olive Oil.  The Villa’s history is long by american standards- the cellar dates back to the 1300’s and was previously owned by the Medici family!  The vineyards and wine cellar are just spectacular.  I had am amazing time working with the winemaking and management team of Stefano and Anna Serbakova.  So in addition to an incredible photo shoot, I gained new friendship that day in Tuscany.

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Chateau Montelena Winery

Below are a few images from a shoot at ​one of my favorite wineries, ​Chateau Montelena​.​  Montelena ​and it’s owner, Jim Barrett​​, are ​known​ worldwide.   They make a variety of incredible reds and whites and the property has an extensive history. ​ ​Barrett, with the help of Steven Spurrier, owner and founder of then Academie du Vin in Paris, played key roles in bringing a new generation of California wines that could stand up to France’s finest. ​ Ch​ateau ​Montelena​’s ​1973 Chardonnay won first place in the “Judgment of Paris” wine competition.   ​The four winning wines were Chateau Montelena ’73 from Napa, French Meursault-Charmes ’73, Chlaone ’74 Monterey County, California and Napa’s Spring Mountain ’73. ​A fictionalized version of Chateau Montelena’s victory was featured in the 2008 film Bottle Shock ​, which I suggest watching if you enjoying learning about wine.​ T​he historic win at the Judgement of Paris clearly called attention to the lesser known and valued California wine industry and firmly planted Napa Valley on the map.  If you happen to be in the Calistoga area, Chateau Montelena is well worth the trip.

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