Wednesday, November 23, 2011




(because we no longer say "old")



don and lynn

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


If a picture is worth 1000 words....than 14 pictures are worth 14,000 words!  WHAT can be said about another incredible trip to Paso....THE California Wine Country!  Talented and friendly winemakers and winery owners displaying their love, passion and produce YUMMY and creative and share food, laughter and wine with.

And with my weekend starting by pouring at EPOCH ESTATE VINEYARD'S Tasting Room, surrounded by these gorgeous KNOW it's going to be a winederful weekend...
Pouring and sipping...and listening to music at the Paderewski Fest...with my wife and new friends
THEN....the next day...let the tasting begin...with the ALWAYS gracious and wonderful Lynne Teckman and her delicious and palate pleasing Per Cazo wines....where nothing is ever left to chance (per cazo meaning "by chance")
Followed by our visit to Carl at Caliza---meeting some new old friends----it's been way too long since we were there
And....after that most educational vineyard tour several months ago...we HAD to take our friends to meet and sip with Bob Tillman of Alta Colina...another of Paso's elite rising stars

Then, up the road a bit for our visit to L'Aventure....where we received a royal tasting hosted by Robert....and a peek into their wine future.....and we'll never tell what is IN that Booty Barrel....but trust'll want some!
As all good things must come to an end....the last tasting of our 3-1/2 days.....Tuesday morning before heading Daniel Daou's new...up above the clouds tasting room at the top of Daou Mountain.....with THE most panoramic view of Paso and it's magical vineyards and fields......Daniel being the consummate Frenchman and host....passionate, humorous, gallant---and another irreplaceable new friend....

The fall colors were amazing
We even had time to visit the elephant seals north of San Simeon...
AND had the WORLD'S BEST LOBSTER Indigo Moon in Cambria

The ONLY problem being:  WHERE to put the luggage for our drive back home!

WHAT makes our Paso trips best?  Is it the wines?  The ambiance? The new friendships we have established with winemakers and other wine lovers like ourselves?  The beautiful scenery?  The food?....
All of it combined...where the parts equal more than the whole....for another winederful trip
Putting a perennial smile of contentment on all of our faces

Until next time.....

Cheers....drink good wine with good friends---because that IS what it is all about
Life is Good


Monday, November 7, 2011

A Taste of Chianti!

Can you remember walking into that small neighborhood Italian restaurant....the Aria from Madama Butterfly coming through the loudspeakers, red and white checkered plastic tablecloths....sawdust on the floor...a hot pizza steaming on the table....and a bulbous bottle in a straw basked filled with "Chianti"...and when the bottle was became a candle holder......this is what Chianti USED to be!  But our latest Wine Night and gracious hosts Paul and Ellen....who designated this Chianti night...proved that this was no longer your straw basket $2.00 Chianti!

Before starting with 'the main event' we were served an enticing Vigna del Vulcano Lacryma Christi del Vesuvio 2008 Bianco ...  an Italian white...the grapes grown on the slopes of Mount Vesuvius.  Closing your eyes, you could whiff and discern the earthiness of 2000 year old ash and lava....layered in with the aroma and flavor of peach and lemon, with a hint of floral aromas.......talking, sipping and enjoying the assorted appetizers....we then moved onto the Chianti tasting....

...3 bottles, all brown bagged, blind tasted, analyzed, scrutinized, smelled, sipped, savored, swallowed and finally rated.....ALL Chianti's....all incredible!  Finally....after drinking and was time to see WHAT we had consumed.........
1).  2007...Castello di Brolio, Gaiole in Chianti.  Full bodied, fruity, layered, a nice finish.  Sippable with or without food....or as (Mike hates to describe a wine)...simply YUMMY!
2).  2006...Villa Cafaggio, Panzano in Chianti.  Definitely food friendly..smooth..., somewhat earthy...more subtle.....and
3).  2006...Vigna del Sorbo Fontody, Panzano in Chianti.  Hmmmmm....interesting....
as we blind tasted we all had the same thought and said:  Wines #2 and #3 seem very similar!  Are they the same??  Could it be two of us picked the same wine? you can see.....we were close...same vintage...same area!  And very distinctive from the 2007.  In fact...Paul said:  These two are the SAME vintage!  WHAT a pallet our Mr. Paul has!

After an evening of eating, sipping, comparing, analyzing, re-tasting side by side.....we scored and rated....and TONIGHT'S WINNER!   AT LONG LAST!  MIKE!  With his 2007 Castello di Brolio!  CONGRATULATIONS MIKE!!!!!

but finish the evening with a perfect sip....Paul broke out  a 2002 Deinhard Beeren Ausslese Rheinhessen.  A just sweet enough dessert wine to go with the fabulous creme brulee made by Pamela and Mike!

Needless to say...yet ANOTHER GREAT WINE NIGHT!  Friends, food, wine......and now....onto the next in another month or so...

But meanwhile:  UPCOMING!  A trip to PASO !  with appointments and tastings lined up.....and all those wines should be quite:  YUMMY!  And of course, my comments next week.

As always...feel free to share these comments, comment me directly....and enjoy a good glass of wine.


P.S.  AND....if you just happen to be pasoing near Paso this Saturday (November 12th), and come by the Epoch Tasting might just see me pouring......and sipping---come by and say