Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Paso Robles Getaway Winery #3 Niner Wine Estates #ninerwine

In the middle of what seems like nowhere, sits this beautiful, rustic elegant stone hospitality center/tasting room of Niner Wine Estates.We were in for a wonderful experience walking into this winery that accentuates the surrounding hills and vineyards, most specifically the iconic heart-shaped grove of trees that the windows in this building focus upon.

The tasting room offers a gracious way of living when tasting their wines in a laid back environment. This winery not only has wonderful wines, but offer a variety of cooking classes such as Italian cooking in their restaurant-sized education kitchen and even offer trips to the farmer's market. We were made to feel very welcome and enjoyed our entire experience at Niner Wine Estates

Here's what we tasted in October. They offered a wine and cheese flight they month we were there.

2012 Sauvignon Blanc Edna Valley ($22). "This Sauvignon Blanc has inviting tropical and floral aromas of lychee, passion-fruit, tart papaya and plumeria that jump out of the glass, tantalizing taste buds. A bright, crisp mouthfeel with balanced acidity and an underlying roundness." I bought this bottle of wine and love each drop of it!

2012 Albarino Edna Valley ($22) has only 5% of Sauvignon Blanc blended in it. It's creamy with a nice tartness!

2012 Grenache Blanc Heart Hill Vineyard ($22) is a nice blend of Grenache and a little Rousanne for a delicate, round, soft and creamy finish.

Finally we tasted a 2012 Estate Bottle Cabernet Sauvignon Bootjack Ranch ($35) that was amazing. I bought it for Don for Valentine's Day! Yes, I hid it until February 14th!

While we were there, I visited the lounge facilities and saw this funny picture in the ladies restroom!

I had to post this on Facebook and Twitter especially on Valentine's Day! LOL

Ever in Paso Robles? Niner Wine Estates is a must!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Paso Robles Getaway Winery #2 Castoro Cellars #castorocellars

Dam Fine Wines

This Mediterranean-styled tasting room is located on Highway 46 in the Paso Robles region of California. Walking under the long grape arbor to enter the doors of this beautiful winery is a pleasant experience even before tasting their wines. The lush gardens and native plants, with views of the surrounding hills and vineyards are a great place to picnic and enjoy their wines. 

The tasting room is beautiful and I remember a cat lounging on the sofa while we were tasting these DAM FINE WINES! They offer local artisan products, gifts and gourmet items in their tasting room also. 

Here's what we tasted and bought!

2012 Pinot Grigio ($22) from their Whale Rock Vineyard on the west side of the Templeton Gap. These grapes are always one of the first picked and gives them a glimpse of the harvest to come. We loved this Pinot!

2012 Pinot Grigio

2012 Reserve Chardonnay ($22) from the same vineyard as the Pinot Grigio! Aged in newer French oak barrels, this Chardonnay is wonderful with soups, seafoods, or as I drink it-all by itself!

2012 Chardonnay

MY FAVORITE WINE-2012 Sauvignon Blanc ($15) Click on the name to read their description because I totally agree with it! This is THE BEST SB I have ever tasted!

2012 Sauvignon Blanc

And last, but not least, is their 2012 Rosato Di Zinfandel ($19). This is a dry Rose' with "flavors of raspberry jam and fresh plum with a crisp white pepper finish."

I bought this Rose' and love it!

If you get a chance to visit Paso Robles, you have to go to Castoro Cellars!


Thursday, February 20, 2014

Paso Robles Getaway October 2013 Winery #1 #PeachyCynWinery

If you read my last few blogs, you will know that I was in Sonoma for a few days, and then went home with my oldest daughter and husband to spend a few days with my two oldest granddaughters!

Here we are headed to a soccer game and Huntington Beach!

P and me at lunch!
A's volleyball game!

We played all week after school, ate lunch with the girls at school, went to volleyball games, etc. And then it came time to go and I couldn't leave. I don't get to see them very much, so I stayed three more days. That's when my daughter and I decided to go to Paso Robles Wine Country. There had been a big wine weekend in that region, so the Monday after was slow and a perfect time to visit the tasting rooms.

 Peachy Canyon Winery-Our first winery on the list. We had carefully planned a route so that no time would be wasted-our time was limited due to picking up the girls from school at 3:00. (Turns out we arranged another ride for them because we didn't get back in time and our driver got a speeding ticket :( on the way back!)

The lady in this tasting room was so sweet and she poured us twelve tastes before it was all over! Here's what we had! By the way, it was all good! Score at the first stop!

Click on each name for tasting notes and vinification!

2011 Incredible Red Zinfandel ($15) was indeed incredible at a low price!

2012 Edna Valley Chardonnay ($25)-100% Chardonnay-aromas of warm baked good and tastes of fresh green apples.

2012 "Concrete Blanc" Viognier ($25) is an amazing wine. A very floral wine with notes of citrus peel. So good! 

2012 York Mountain Chardonnay ($30) Notes of key lime, lemon, and white nectarine aged in neutral French Oak barrels.

2012 Dry Rose' ($28) This is a blend of Grenache, Petite Sirah, Viognier, Zinfandel, and Syrah grapes. Wonderful Rose'!

The next five wines are Zinfandels! All unique and all great wines! Each one haas it's own unique taste and if you love Zinfandels, you will love these!
Click here to read about each one!

The last wine we tasted at PCW was a 2010 Petite Sirah ($32). 

The second best thing about Peachy Canyon is that both husband and wife were teachers (looking for a better life)! Good for both of you! You found a way to another way to have fun with a different kind of stress! I love teachers and teaching! And I love their wines!


Monday, February 17, 2014

October Winecation-Last Day-Headed Back to SoCal-Preston of Dry Creek Winery and Vineyards

Preston of Dry Creek Winery and Vineyards

The tasting room/farmhouse!

Preston Winery is an organic farm and winery founded in the 1970s and over the years their wine has become one of the handmade, homegrown food products to enjoy. They are dedicated to the wise use and care of the land so they may serve their communities good wine and food.

Here's what we tasted!

L. Preston is a Rhone blend ($25).
Sauvignon Blanc was good.

Not sure what this was and I can't find anything about wines on their website other than they make wines.
Petite Sirah
Madame Preston ($24) which is a blend of Rousanne,  Grenache Blanc, and Marsanne.

Not sure I'll go back here! I think they are more into food than wine. I did buy a Viognier that I haven't opened yet. I hope it's what I remember it to be.

Headed back to SoCal now!

Friday, February 14, 2014

October Winecation Day 5-Time to Say Goodbyes! #LambertBridge

Lambert Bridge had been on my list for two different winecations, and I was determined to get there before we left Sonoma. Family and friends from the bottling had flown back to their hometowns, and all that was left was my daughter, her husband and myself. We had to have one last day of tasting before returning to SoCal where my two oldest granddaughters were waiting for us.

Lambert Bridge Winery

When you drive up to this winery, the colors of fall greet you with open arms. 

The rustic cabin surrounded with old Japanese maples and wisteria yearn for you to enter and taste the artisanal wines they have created at this winery.

Upon entering the doors, you first see and nearly trip over the most gorgeous and biggest dogs I've ever seen! And then you see this tasting room that's so inviting, with a barrel room to the left for private tasting parties, and a huge stone fireplace at the other end.

Princess Bernadette, the sleepy St. Bernard!
Here are the fine wines we tasted!

2010 Dry Creek Zinfandel ($45) has hints of anise and black plums with a very silky finish.
2010 Dry Creek Valley Forchini Vineyards Zinfandel ($55) has dark cherry pie flavors with hints of vanilla.
2008 Sonoma County Merlot ($50) is packed with fruit flavors and sweet spices. This wine can be described as delicious! 
2007 Sonoma County Limited Selection Cabernet Sauvignon ($95) is the LB gem I bought for Don's birthday and hid it for 3 months from him! The winemaker's tasting notes will have you drooling for this fab cab before you even finish reading! Don and I (yes, I got some of it too) love it!

I also tasted the 2007 Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon that is a blend of 91% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Petit Verdot. It was amazing, but I knew the one above was what Don would want.

Here are some of the pics of the inside of this rustic old cabin!

Wylie, the Great Pyrenees (I think!)
Can't wait to return to Lambert Bridge Winery the next time I'm in Sonoma!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

October Winecation Day 4-The Bottling at Moondance Cellars, Sonoma, CA

Gasconade Landing
Special Cuvee'

On our fourth day of the winecation, we bottled one very unique red wine made of organic certified Dry Creek Merlot and Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon. The name above is a place known only to those who have been there. It's located in the hills and mountains of Missouri and belongs to one special couple who had just celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary. My daughter and her husband had planned this wonderful weekend of wine tasting and bottling in their honor, and we were their guests along with three other couples.

What fun we had during the actual bottling of the wine, eating gourmet foods prepared on site, drinking the wine, listening to music from some local people, and reminiscing of the times we had been there before to bottle wine with other groups.

Here are several pictures from the day that says it all!
This is where we begin to fill the bottles with wine after the argon gas.
The corker!
The foiler!
The labeler (done by hand by the way)!
Freshly made sushi along with Dave, the owner of Moondance Cellars.
The live music played by very talented musicians, one of which played in the same band as Van Morrison called The Great Eight.

Our glasses filled with a sparkling wine to toast the happy couple!

My daughters-Natalie on my right and Abigail on my left!

Priscilla Cohen, the wife and owner of Moondance Cellars!

The happy couple!

 The night didn't end there though! We had one other special event to celebrate on October 13. My son-in-law's birthday was also that day!

We found the perfect birthday hat, wine glasses, and chocolate cake for his special day too!