It’s been over a year since we visited any Sonoma vineyards so we took a trip out when Benno and Nora were here. We had a chance to visit a few places that day but today’s entry will be about Wilson Winery. (http://wilsonwinery.com) We heard about Wilson Winery from the lady at the Healdsburg Chamber of Commerce and saw that they had food available too so we planned to have lunch there that day. This was our first time visiting the Dry Creek Valley region of Sonoma so we were excited to taste another area’s terroir!
When we visited Healdsburg at the beginning of the month for the Sapphire Hill Food and Wine Pairing Lunch, http://mferraro73.tumblr.com/post/120785672765/sapphire-hill-food-and-wine-pairing-lunch-we-had,
we did a wine tasting at the Hawley Wine Tasting Room (www.hawleywine.com) to start the day. Neil and I have visited Healdsburg a few times and knew there were many wine tasting rooms but it’s so hard to choose when given that many options. We headed over to the Healdsburg Chamber of Commerce for some advice. The woman there was so helpful! She not only had suggestions for tastings in Healdsburg, but also gave us an idea for dinner, charcuterie, and vineyards North of the area. What a great idea to head there upon arrival to Healdsburg! One of her favorite places was Hawley Winery because they have nice whites and reds and we were all looking for something a little different.
In order to celebrate Neil’s Birthday weekend, we headed out to Lake County. We have been here once before almost two years ago,(http://mferraro73.tumblr.com/post/60941545845/trip-to-lake-county-labor-day-weekend-part-1) (http://mferraro73.tumblr.com/post/60941630541/trip-to-lake-county-labor-day-weekend-part-2), and were fortunate to be able to stay in the guest house at a vineyard.
When we visited Sottomarino back in March, http://mferraro73.tumblr.com/post/115417517063/treasure-island-and-wine-tasting-at-sottomarino, we had the chance to try the wines at the Howell Mountain tasting room as well. Howell Mountain is a famed grape growing region in Napa Valley but this brand makes their wine on Treasure Island, as part of Winemaker’s Studio. (http://www.howellmountainvineyards.com/wine-shop.html)
It had been quite a while since we visited Treasure Island, so we decided to head there last weekend. On the last weekend of every month, they hold the Treasure Island Flea Market, which includes vintage goods, tons of food trucks, hand-made gifts and more. (http://www.treasureislandflea.com) It has evolved quite a bit since I used to pour wine there for one of the Treasure Island wineries! Speaking of those wineries, they have expanded their tasting rooms, now called Winemaker’s Studios, http://www.sfeventvenues.com/index.php/san-francisco-event-venues/winemaker-studios, to represent four brands, just behind the giant Winery SF, http://www.winery-sf.com, at the main gate of Treasure Island.
In order to celebrate WineAndCheeseFriday this week, we purchased tickets to the French Wine Tasting Event, hosted by Pierre Sparr, owner of Charles Sparr Winery. This event was held at the BevMo down the street from our apartment. (http://www.bevmo.com) They remodeled the entire store a few months ago and now have a tasting bar where they hold weekend happy hours as well as some more formal tasting events. This will be our first time using their tasting bar so let the tasting begin.
After reading all about the party planning in part one (http://mferraro73.tumblr.com/post/112647446928/east-coast-wine-party-working-in-the-wine-industry) stay tuned for the tasting notes for these East Coast wines.
Working in the wine industry in Florida and then in California, I received an interesting perspective as to what is defined as “Wine Country.” I heard that there is wine made in almost all of the United States. This is not to say that every state can grow grapes but many states purchase juice from one of the grape growing regions and make their own wine.
Our final WineAndCheeseFriday in Costa Rica is only wine. The time went faster than we expected so we purchased one final wine before we left. This wine is by a brand called Fiesta, www.Vinosfiesta.com, which makes many different fruit wines here in Costa Rica. This reminded us of Florida where you very rarely find a grape wine made there.
For this week’s Wine and Cheese Friday, we will celebrate with Holiday Wines. This could encompass many types of wine but at William Cross Wine Merchant, http://wmcross.com/, they classified it as the questions most commonly asked during the Holidays. Mainly which wines are good crowd pleasers but also a good “party wine” and here in SF, one that would pair well with oysters or crab?