Sunday, March 29, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Jelly Belly adds wine to its tasty menu

Inspiration for some of the best business ideas comes about when you least expect it.

John Jamison, vice president of Retail Operations at Jelly Belly, was having a quiet dinner last spring with his wife Diane when she suggested that Jelly Belly look at wine-tasting as another option for its thousands of annual visitors.

Jamison has been married for more than 30 years and thankfully he has learned to listen to his wife. The Jelly Belly Candy Co. Chocolate and Wine Experience is the result.

Jelly Belly has offered a daily event since last June for wine pairing with chocolate in the Very Cherry room at the Visitor Center. The Visitor Center’s handmade chocolates . . . and wine; now that’s a combination that may not immediately come to your mind. That’s just because people are usually so smitten with jelly beans, it is easy to forget, Jelly Belly Candy Co. makes some tasty chocolate.

Your Economic Notes reporters spoke with Jamison this week to get the fermented story.

“We love collaborative efforts, and our Chocolate and Wine Experience is a great way to promote our chocolates as well as Suisun Valley products at our Visitor Center,” he said. “Many people don’t realize we make our own fresh truffles here, and that’s been of great interest when tasting an exquisite dark chocolate truffle with a wine, the reactions are amazing.”

Interested imbibers enter the Very Cherry tasting room on the second floor, where guests are invited to sample five wines (for a small fee). Each wine is paired with a chocolate from the Chocolate Shoppe, Jelly Belly’s specialty line of chocolates available at the Fairfield Visitor Center. The Chocolate and Wine Experience currently focuses on the wines of Wooden Valley Winery, the stalwart Suisun Valley vintner.

During the peak summer tourist season, more than 3,000 people per day visit Jelly Belly. The wine-tasting event offers visitors another option for their visit to Fairfield. Jelly Belly can even accommodate larger groups, including corporate parties and events.

“If you pair the right food or cheese with wine, you can enhance both the food and wine taste,” Jamison said. “We suggest a wine-chocolate-wine pairing for our guests as this allows someone to taste the wine, then the chocolate, and then notice the change in the profile of the wine when they immediately taste the wine again. Our Wooden Valley 2012 Riesling, paired with a dark chocolate raspberry stick, has been the most popular.”

Jelly Belly has doubled its expected sales volume during the time since it began hosting the Chocolate and Wine Experience. This activity has kept its wine pairing subcommittee busy collaborating on new combinations for sampling. Jelly Belly is now one of Wooden Valley Winery’s biggest customers.

Jelly Belly believes that in addition to being a bargain and a showcase for some of their own fine confections, the Chocolate and Wine Experience is another opportunity to promote another local industry, an industry that is of growing importance and will help preserve the agricultural heritage that contributes to Fairfield’s quality of life.

As the wine industry continues to boom in Northern California and wine industry-related companies locate in Fairfield industrial and office parks, it only makes sense that one of our largest and oldest industrial citizens should try its hand at the wine-tasting business. Given the huge number of visitors who come to the Jelly Belly headquarters and our proximity to Suisun Valley, it’s a natural fit.

Jelly Belly has been in Fairfield since 1986, with the Visitor Center opening in 1999. In fact, June 14-15 is the 15th anniversary of the Jelly Belly Visitors Center (and Jelly Belly will certainly be celebrating appropriately).

In Jelly Belly’s tasting room, Fairfield and the Suisun Valley are promoted through marketing materials and maps, coupons and special deals. Jelly Belly is an active participant in the Fairfield Conference and Visitors Bureau’s activities and also has a seat on the board of directors.

Jelly Belly can be a good launching pad to educate newcomers to Fairfield about other attractions in the area, and has also partnered with Sepay Groves Olive Oil on mutual promotions.

We love to see local companies partner for business-to-business sales opportunities like Wooden Valley Winery and Jelly Belly have done. It helps to keep the local economy thriving.

The Chocolate and Wine Experience is available daily between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. For more information, go online to https://jellybelly.com/Info/promotions/wine_experience.

Economic Notes is an update from Fairfield City Hall written by Brian Miller and Karl Dumas of the Fairfield Planning and Development Department. Reach them at 428-7461 or email at [email protected] or [email protected]

Brian Miller and Karl Dumas

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 1 comment

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Rick WoodJune 01, 2014 - 8:04 am

    I didn't know. Now I do! Thanks. What a great story about something distinctively Fairfield.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

Vanden High library project nears completion

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Vanden girls end stellar season

By Brian Arnold | From Page: C1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Cheers for Jupiter – and roller derby

By Brad Stanhope | From Page: A2, 2 Comments

 
Red Cross volunteers help assemble first aid kits

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A3 | Gallery

PG&E helps replace stolen equipment

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A3

 
Justin-Siena names new principal

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A3

 
Vacaville police make arrest after pursuit

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A3, 3 Comments | Gallery

Vacaville bridal, quinceanera show a hit

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A5

 
Event benefits child who attends Cambridge School

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Free paper shredding option returns to Fairfield

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A5 | Gallery

 
Best barometer of investment success: Wealth

By Mark Sievers | From Page: B8

 
Tips on hydrozoning your garden

By Tina Saravia | From Page: B8, 2 Comments

 
Fairfield police log: March 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12, 2 Comments

 
Suisun City police log: March 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

.

US / World

Crash victim’s father calls for more focus on pilot welfare

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Experts: Sex bias case will embolden women despite verdict

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Popular Yosemite National Park lookout opens early in season

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Some British Airways frequent flier accounts miles breached

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

7 shot and injured at Florida spring break house party

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

 
Boko Haram kills 39, legislator, disrupting Nigeria election

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

Official: Al-Shabab siege at Somali hotel ends, 24 dead

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

 
 
Bird flu found in a top Minnesota turkey producing county

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

Islamic fighters led by al-Qaida in Syria seize major city

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

 
.

Living

Today in History: March 29, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: March 29, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Pope finds popularity and dissent at 2-year mark

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

 
Truth does not change

By The Rev. Art Zacher | From Page: C3, 24 Comments

Horoscopes: March 29, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B8

 
Daughter choses stepdad over father to walk her down the aisle

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B8

.

Entertainment

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Second Julie Andrews memoir expected in 2017

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Chrissie Hynde memoir coming in September

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

.

Sports

 
Warriors beat Bucks 108-95, clinch top seed in West

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Wisconsin heads to Final Four after 85-78 win over Arizona

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Burns scores winner in SO to lift Sharks past Flyers, 3-2

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Jenest pitches SCC baseball team to shutout of Contra Costa

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

AP sources: Texas fires coach Barnes after 17 years

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Kazmir, Quintana both strong; A’s beat White Sox 10-4

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Zunino homers twice, but Giants rally to edge Mariners 9-8

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Gordon, Earnhardt among the winners and fans of Martinsville

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Prince Bishop wins Dubai World Cup, California Chrome 2nd

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Serena Williams easily wins opening match at Miami Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Power leads Penske sweep in qualifying for IndyCar opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Revolution win first of season, beating Earthquakes 2-1

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Jimmy Walker leads hometown Texas Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
.

Business

A glance at women in leadership roles in business worldwide

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
For business, more women in charge means bigger profits

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

US drillers scrambling to thwart OPEC threat

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

 
Test trial to use computer servers to heat homes

By The Associated Press | From Page: B14

.

Obituaries

Betty Mason

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Tiffany Lyn (Helzer) Kemp

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Richard F. Coleman

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
James Lee Lewis

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Helen Kalis

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Carol A. Vose

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics