Thursday, July 28, 2011

Paso BD trip...PART 2

Ahhhhhh..and THEN....there was CALIZA'S Carl and Pamela Bowker.  I first met Carl a few years ago when he was bottling right after opening the tasting room.   JUST as my lovely wife and I approached him...the bottling line stopped.  The labeling machine had mis-fired...and botched up the bottling process.  Carl did NOT have a smile on his face...needless to say. That was a very very quick meet and greet.  But these days, there is not much to keep that smile off Carl's (or Pamela's) face.  With consistent 90+ ratings from '06 onward....and a steady and growing fan base, Carl and Pamela couldn't be happier.  You might just want to sit back and relax and be one of Caliza's "Kissin Cousins" on a warm afternoon......or just be a good "Companion"....a delicious tantalizing blend of Cabernet and Syrah.  Bottling glitch or not....what comes out of their bottles will keep you smiling till your next sip.  And Carl and Pamela are always there to talk, sip, and share their liquid passion.

So....what ELSE would a guy do for his birthday when up in Paso?  "WORK!" OF COURSE!  My afternoon spent pouring at the Epoch tasting room......finally I was able to sample (and pour, and chat about), some of the new and great 08's!  The 08 Tempranillo.....definitely an epic (or Epochical) sensory experience!  Complex, wonderful tongue popping  flavors with a tantalizing finish....I thought the 07 was good....but the 08 is a major mouthful of yummy.  And of course the flagship 08 "Ingenuity" a wonderful subtle and complex Rhone blend of GSM and Petite Syrah----drink it now...drink it later.  Drink it with or without food...but when you drink it the big smile will come to your face....can you say heavenly?  And while the temperature is still hot with warm nights....coming from someone who really does not favor rose....Epoch's new rose (almost equal parts of grenache, syrah and cunoise) is just a beautiful mixture of strawberry, raspberry, kiwi.  Sip it by the pool as the breeze blows in the late afternoon.....but be careful!  You may want to stay OUT of the pool-because you can finish the bottle before you know it.  And pouring alongside Stephanie and Christina, two of the nicest (and most knowledgeable) young women is a pleasure.  Pouring, sipping and making new friends....and re-meeting old/new friends I poured for before (Rebecca and Ethan) is what the Paso wine experience is all about.

The evening finished off at a new restaurant in town:  Roberts!  Definitely an "A" lister!  This one is a keeper.....try it if you haven't.  And of course, the old new favorite:  Il Cortile....nothing on the menu less than 5 star in preparation, presentation, creativity, flavors.

Of course, the highlight of the trip was being with my kids----they arranged most of the tastings and the sip and greets.  Kids, wife, friends, food, Paso wine......
we'll be back soon.
and as always, PLEASE!  Feel free to comment, email me at, pass the blog along...
and drink good wine.

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