We took a trip up to Washington last week to visit our friends, Jordan and Kyle in Bothell, WA. Haven’t heard of that town, well it’s right next to Woodinville, WA. (http://woodinvillewinecountry.com) Since we were in the Washington Wine Region, we felt it was necessary to do some wine tasting. Our friends said they had never gone wine tasting, just “wine drinking.” We found a wine bar near their house (http://www.thepurplecafe.com/locations.html) that carried a bunch of local wines.
This weeks WineAndCheeseFriday is about the Mt. Etna wine tasting that I attended at William Cross Wine Merchants (http://wmcross.com). As the regular readers of this website know, this is a cute wine shop, pretty close to my home in San Francisco, where I have attended a few wine tastings. ( http://mferraro73.tumblr.com/post/90139827273/the-strange-this-week-i-attended-a-wine-tasting) ( http://mferraro73.tumblr.com/post/105670703153/holiday-wines-at-william-cross-wine-merchant) It has been a while since my last visit there so I wanted to catch another one of their Wednesday night tastings.
We recently took a trip to visit Neil’s family in Erie, Pennsylvania and decided to make a trip out to their Wine Country, http://www.lakeeriewinecountry.org. What a strange feeling it is to be driving around “up North” and feel like you are in Wine Country. I remember a past trip to visit and asking why there were so many grapes and finding out that Welch’s is based nearby. As you may expect, this would mean that many of the grapes are the Concord varietal but there are quite a few different varietals that thrive in this climate near the lake. There are over 25 wineries available to visit in this region but we limited ourselves to just one, Heritage Wine Cellars, http://heritagewine.biz.
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.