As wildfires rage, winemaker debuts product in Arkansas

Posted: October 22, 2017 at 2:25 a.m.

Sonny Williams' Steak Room and co-executive chefs Ben Lindley and Todd Weber hosted a wine dinner the evening of Oct. 11 for Tom Gamble, owner of Gamble Family Vineyards.

Gamble, a third-generation farmer whose ancestor partnered in founding Procter & Gamble, established his Napa, Calif., vineyard in 2005 on land that has been in his family for more than 100 years. Gamble wines are new to Arkansas -- one of only a few states picked to carry the brand.

As he visited Little Rock and Fayetteville, wildfires blazed at neighboring vineyards back home. "There's not much I can do, so I decided to keep the trip," he said. "We'll persevere -- farmers always do." He monitored the situation from afar through his winemaker, Jim Close.

The Gambles have owned as much as 20,000 acres in the heart of California's wine country, although Tom Gamble is the first to enter into the wine side of the business.

The dinner's main course was rib-eye bourguignon, pearl onions and cremini mushrooms over truffle mashed potatoes accompanied by the 2013 Gamble Cabernet Sauvignon. Other Gamble wines served included the 2016 Rose, 2015 Sauvignon Blanc and the 2013 Paramount Red Blend, of which only 800 cases were made.

-- Story and photos by Cyd King

for the Democrat-Gazette

High Profile on 10/22/2017