This photo (c. 1910 ?) was given to me by one of the Coombs/Dunlap family members for which I am eternally grateful. My wife and I were married on this very site, previously the home of Nathan Coombs.
Well, it happened. The TTB ruled on the "Tulocay" appellation petition and they decided against it for the simple reason of the name. Sadly, the Napa Valley's slam-dunk "nested" AVA went down on the name dispute when it could have been avoided. The ruling came much earlier than I anticipated since the TTB still hadn't worked out the situation with the "Calistoga" AVA which shares similar issues with the name and existing brands.
For those following this saga, my previous post includes some info and links to the early stages. Also, the Napa Valley Register had a story recently about the ruling with some great quotes and ensuing commentary. The topic definitely touches a nerve with people.
It actually took me a little while to realize that something happened when the TTB decision came down: the actual debate about the name for our little slice of viticultural heaven has finally been resolved. I've been part of these conversations for almost 20 years and it's startling to realize that it's done, it's over. If it's going to be an AVA, it's only prospect is, rightfully, "Coombsville." Now the only trick is starting over without the volition of the original petitioners. I know that there is a broad base of support for "Coombsville" but without the staff and $ to make a strong push. I'm sure that $ alone could go a long way to moving it forward but most of the support is a bit more grass-roots. Or to quote Aaron, more "redneck" (see Register article). Aaron provided that great quote in the aftermath and I thank him.