There are a lot of wine rules, but only two that really matter: #1. drink what you like; #2. share it with friends.

Who is The Thirsty Kitten? We’re Kip & Lucy, a couple of wine lovers who’ve been sipping together since the mid-1980s. We have real jobs in non-wine-related careers, but exploring wine together has been a shared hobby that now borders on passionate obsession (just ask our friends). What we appreciate most about wine is the experience— the sipping and the relishing, the stories of the wines and the winemakers, and the pleasure of good company as we enjoy the moment.

What are your favorite wines? At some point or another in our wine journey, we’ve been in love with just about every major grape varietal. These days, we’d have to say that Pinot Noir and Syrah are our loves on the red side, with Riesling quickly becoming a passion on the white side.

Favorite wine regions? We write mostly about wineries in California because this is where we’ve spent the most time tasting wine. Sonoma and Mendocino (specifically the Anderson Valley) in the north and Santa Barbara in the south our current top three favorite California destinations for sipping.

Are you biased? Yes, and proudly so! We’re not afraid to admit that we’re especially fond of the little guys of the wine world — small producers, family owned, often with emphasis on sustainable farming, always with a passion for creating the best possible wine they can produce.

Quality control team Holton and Cat check to make sure no wine is wasted.

Quality control team Holton and Cat check to make sure no wine is wasted. Photo credit: Sara Chapman Heegaard

Do you really have a cat? Yes. We have two. Our first cat, whom we adopted from a rescue shelter and named Cat for the feline in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, was the inspiration for our blog name. We later adopted a second cat whom we considered naming Dog but decided instead to call Scout.

How do you feel about dogs? We love them! Currently, we have one pooch, an adorable rescue hound name Holton who is 65 pounds of boundless energy and affection.

Do you give wine ratings? No. We’re sheepish to admit it, but we think ratings are overrated. When we started out, we tried to conform and created a 5-paw wine rating system. Then we remembered that kittens only have four paws so we abandoned that effort in short order. In truth, we’re far more interested in telling stories than handing out point scores for wines, and there are already plenty of excellent rating sources available for those who like numbers. We do try to give you enough of a sense of the wines we share so that you can decide whether to give them a try. And, rest assured, we never write about anything we don’t like.

Do you accept wine samples? No, we don’t. Like many other bloggers, we frequently receive inquiries from wineries wishing to send us a sample to taste and write about. While we love the thought of free wine, we don’t accept samples because we simply haven’t enough time to try them all and don’t want to feel pressure to rate and review everything we’re offered. However, we’re always on the lookout for new wineries to try, so feel free to say hello and introduce yourself here or on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and we may just be intrigued enough with your story to order some of your wine for ourselves.

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Winemaker Kenn Vigoda of Judd’s Hill drawing a barrel sample of our wine.

Do you make your own wine? Yes, we’ve been dabbling in the last few years in the “custom crush” realm, working with the expert folks at Judd’s Hill winery in Napa Valley to bottle a wine under own very own Thirsty Kitten label. Through their MicroCrush program, Judd’s Hill helps clients who are interested in producing small lots of wine to blend and bottle. For us, this has been a fun way to continue our wine education because we get one-on-one time with seasoned winemaking veteran, Kenn Vigoda, as we sample our wine in barrel with him and make choices about blending. It’s like wine school, but at the end you get a lot of wine to take home.

Is your wine for sale? No, at this point our wine is strictly a private, educational project. Because many friends expressed interest in buying it, we did toy with the idea of getting it on the shelves of one of our local retail shops, but after a bit of research we decided to forgo the headaches of wine licensing and reporting and just drink it all ourselves. Cheers!


Our very first bottling.