Holman Ranch Tasting Room, Carmel by the Sea, CA

We first learned about Holman Ranch during a #PinkSociety #PinkParty (https://twitter.com/search?q=%23PinkSociety%20%23PinkParty) in June. I was fortunate to try out their Susan’s Saignee Rosé during the chat. As I swirled and sipped the wine, I found out more about the 400 acre ranch in Carmel Valley. One of the questions was about the tasting room in Carmel by the Sea. Not only are there many tasting rooms to enjoy in this town, it’s also “by the sea” and beautiful. Well, I was convinced to include Holman Ranch’s tasting room in Carmel by the Sea in our Sideways Wine Tour. We left Paso Robles, driving along route 101 up the California coast, and along the dark and windy roads until we arrived at our cabin in Carmel By the Sea. Read More…

Tablas Creek Vineyard, Paso Robles, CA

There was one place remaining in our big intro to Paso Robles wine tasting day, Tablas Creek Vineyard. Lori told us it was a must-visit to close out our day and when we found out that Tablas Creek was instrumental in the AVA too, we knew we had to continue tasting. (Rough life, I know). The tasting room opened in 2000 and this winery was the first to plant Rhone varietals in Paso. They are actually the ones who brought the grapes from France through Cornell University. Well now I’m even more excited to taste! As we walked through their front patio, we saw the mother vines of these original varietals. I can already tell this is going to be a great tasting! Read More…

Dracaena Wines, Paso Robles, CA

We made a plan to hang out with Lori from Dracaena Wines, during our trip to Paso Robles. She was so excited to show us all the iconic places of the region, and I was hopeful that we’d get to see her vineyard and winery, too. I met Lori on #WiningHourChat and knew we’d be friends once I found out they made a Cabernet Franc. After hearing about their wine for a couple years on the chat, this was the day that I was finally going to be able to taste it. I’m not a Cabernet Franc expert, by any means, but I used to pour one at the Winery Collective and I always enjoyed it. My favorite part about the plan was that we’d get to taste the Dracaena wine next to the vines that produced it. How cool! Read More…

Eberle Winery, Paso Robles, CA

Eberle Winery is located in Paso Robles, CA which was unchartered territory for Neil and I. When we lived in California, we focused on the wine regions immediately surrounding San Francisco. We took the opportunity during our recent trip to California to explore some new wine regions. As luck would have it, Lori from Dracaena Wines volunteered to bring us to some of the landmark wineries of the area as our introduction to Paso Robles. She knew it was only appropriate to begin at Eberle Winery where we could experience the winery responsible for getting the AVA started. Not to mention, that Eberle Winery uses many Rhone varietals, grapes that Neil and I enjoy very much in wine. Read More…

Hitching Post 2 and Buellton, CA

You’ve heard that we went on a Sideways Wine Tour of California and this entry will be a continuation of that series. Have you been to Buellton, CA? Any superfan of Sideways probably has and this was actually our second trip out there. No trip would be complete without visiting The Windmill Inn (now called Sideways Inn), The Hitching Post 2, and maybe you’ve even gone to see those pesky ostriches that nipped at Jack? Read More…

Fiddlehead Cellars, Wine Ghetto, Lompoc, CA

Our weeklong wine tasting trip was called the Sideways Wine Tour. Imagine how excited we were to find Fiddlehead Cellars in the Wine Ghetto. Do you recognize this brand from the movie Sideways? It’s from the scene during Miles and Maya’s double date with Jack and Stephanie. Maya has a glass of Fiddlehead Cellars Sauvignon Blanc that Miles tastes and likes. Maya says, “We should get you a glass of your own”. Obscure reference, maybe? but I’ve seen it a million times so I recognized it in the list of tasting rooms at the Ghetto. Read More…

Pali Wine Co, Wine Ghetto, Lompoc, CA

We began our Sideways Wine Tour in the Wine Ghetto, Lompoc, CA. First stop was Pali Wine Co., thanks to a recommendation from our AirBnB host, Edward. He was previously part of the wine industry and happily suggested Pali wines. I’ve heard of the Wine Ghetto but was open to places we should taste in the area. He told us about it since we wanted to try some local Pinot. Read More…

Vinebox 3 with Campo cheese

Have you been following through our gift subscription to VineBox? Well this is our last entry of the 3-month subscription. Did you miss our introduction explaining Vinebox? http://wineandcheesefriday.com/vinebox-shipment-one/ We’ve really enjoyed this service and might even start it back up again if we end up staying at the same address for more than a week. Today’s entry has all French wines; one white wine, 2 red wines and another North Carolina cheese by Boxcarr Handmade Cheese. Read More…

Johnson Estate Vineyard Walk & Brunch, Westfield, NY

Neil’s mom, Linda, works at a vineyard in New York, so while we were planning our trip to the Erie, PA area we made reservations to attend the brunch at Johnson Estate. Although we’ve visited the Lake Erie Wine Trail a handful of times, we’ve never done an official vineyard tour there. I was so excited to learn about some of the grapes local to the area and what a bonus to have brunch and a wine tasting included!
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Garnacha y Valdeon, Spanish Wine and Cheese pairing with @JustTheBottle

When I was approached to be the guest on Just the Bottle we talked through a few ideas of what the theme would be. I had recently done two Spanish wine and Spanish cheese pairings, (http://wineandcheesefriday.com/rioja-with-sheep-cheese-a-little-piece-of-spain/ and http://wineandcheesefriday.com/white-rioja-and-goat-cheese-log/) that were well matched, so I suggested the idea. Christina, the hostess, happily agreed since she is a fan of Spanish wines. This was our chance to get better acquainted with a new region for wine and cheese. We’ve had Grenache from California and quite a few blue cheeses but neither one from Spain so when we came up with the idea of Garnacha and Valdeon, it was settled. Read More…