Last night at Steve and Alexandra’s, Chicago, Illinois

We wrapped up our trip to Chicago by having a bit of an impromptu dinner party with about six people. We had been gathering up some goodies while we made our way around town going from wine shop to wine shop and of course, cheese shops too. Now it was time to try them all out. Read More…

Copa Vino de Marañón y Mozzarella Cheese

We heard about this wine during one of our previous trips to Costa Rica but couldn’t find it until this year. The wine is made from cashews and we really thought hard about how a wine could be made from nuts. We were telling someone about it and they said “Oh silly, the wine is made from the fruit, not the nut!” Did you know cashew was a fruit?? Just shortly after finding the wine in one of our local licorerias (liquor stores) we came across the fruit in the farmer’s market. We told the farmer that we’d be tasting the wine soon so he gave us one of the fruits to taste too. Read More…

Wine And Cheese Surprises in Silicon Valley

When we arrived in San Carlos, CA, for Labor Day weekend, there was no question in anyone’s mind that we’d be enjoying lots of wine and cheese in the days to come. Our friend Kristy, a new mom, had been counting the days until we arrived since her wine drinking had been on hiatus during her “mommy to be” days. She planned a grand wine and cheese feast to start out the festivities with 4 cheeses and a bottle of rosé. Maria and Neil were ready! Such a delicious evening! Read More…

Kathy & Gale host Wine and Cheese night for the third time!

Cheeselovers Day is only a few days away. What better way to celebrate than with a pairing of 4 wines and 4 cheeses! We did the tasting for this entry back in the summer during our visit to Lake Erie Wine Country. One of our favorite things about wine and cheese in this area is the Reverie Creamery and Market in Mayville, NY. They have such a great selection of not only their own cheeses but many of the big hitters too. We’ve made a trip out to this shop a few times along with our annual wine tasting voyage around the lake. Actually the tradition now includes the wine tastings, the visit to the cheese shop, and a group tasting with family. Read More…

Dracaena Wines Cabernet Franc and Lazy Lady Farm Duet Cheese

This was the last bottle of 2015 Cabernet Franc by Dracaena Wines, and we got to pair it with some fancy cheese from Vermont! We purchased this bottle of wine direct from Lori during our visit out to Paso Robles back in the summer, . I knew I’d want to find a special cheese to pair with it so I hung on to the bottle for a bit. Since we travel full-time and have no wine cellar, we decided to send it off to my mom and enjoy it in New England in a couple months. Early on in our visit to New England, we planned a trip out to Vermont and we knew we’d find a nice cheese there. We purchased the Lazy Lady Farm duet cheese at our first stop of the day, Grafton Village Store. Grafton, VT not only has a cool cheese shop, there is also a covered bridge, tons of foliage, and an old library. We enjoyed so much wine during the Summertime, that we were happy to have this bottle saved for a later day. Without further ado, the pairing of Dracaena Wines Cabernet Franc and Lazy Lady Farm Duet Cheese. Read More…

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…