Maui Wine: Not a complete oxymoron – a novel tasting experience

The idea of Hawaii as a wine producer may seem far-fetched. But Hawaii’s wealth of climatic zones means this tropical paradise has opportunities to create decent, even good wine. Maui Wine offers delicious wines made from Pineapple, as well as up and coming estate grape wines. Faithful readers, please forgive me for my lack of…

Gloria Ferrer: California sparkling house with Spanish Catalonian flair

Sample some French-style, Spanish-influenced sparkling wine (yep, that’s a thing!) made in Sonoma County, California at Gloria Ferrer. Nestled in the cool bayside Carneros region of Sonoma County, the vineyards of Gloria Ferrer are well situated to grow Chardonnay and Pinot noir grapes, the key components of most sparkling wines. Having visited nearby Domaine Carneros…

A tour of Willamette Valley, Oregon’s best wineries

Where in the USA can you go to experience world class wines in a gorgeous setting, among friendly faces, and all without breaking the bank? Oregon’s Willamette Valley! After nearly a decade since my last visit, Oregon’s Willamette Valley has transformed from an up and coming wine producer to a globally recognized producer of complex…

TwoBirds/OneStone: When you want an amazing meal to go with your Napa wine tour

Today, I highlight the newest breakout in Napa’s wine country restaurant scene. Two Birds/OneStone, located on the property of St. Helena’s Freemark Abbey winery, is Japanese-Californian yakitori fusion at its best.    A few weeks ago, I was fortunate to experience the Grand Reopening celebration for Freemark Abbey’s renovated winery and new tasting room facilities….

The Funk Zone: Santa Barbara’s Urban Wine Trail, Part 2

Curious about wine – but find wineries to be pretentious? Santa Barbara, CA’s Funk Zone is for you! In our last post, the CD showed you three refined tasting rooms along Santa Barbara, California’s Urban Wine Trail. Today, we’ll switch gears and visit a few of the irreverent, well, funky tasting rooms and a brewery…

Wine on the American Riviera: ┬áSanta Barbara’s Urban Wine Trail, Part 1

Join the CD for the first in a two-part tour of Santa Barbara, California’s Urban Wine Trail, where we’ll visit three of Santa Barbara’s more refined tasting rooms. The crown jewel of the self-proclaimed American Riviera, Santa Barbara is part beach resort town, part college town, and increasingly, part wine town. The city’s Urban Wine…

Celadon: A garden spot for California cuisine in Napa, California

No trip to Napa County is complete without good wine and food. The area has an overwhelming selection of both, so how can one choose? I offer one suggestion for a great dinner of California-influenced global cuisine in a literal garden spot in the city of Napa: Celadon. My experience with Celadon came to be…

Willi’s Wine Bar: Sonoma’s little secret

Considering a visit to Sonoma’s Russian River Valley wineries? Make sure to stop into Willi’s Wine Bar for pretentious food -without the pretentious ambiance or price. Willi’s Wine Bar of Santa Rosa, California, embodies every quality that makes Sonoma County an attractive wine destination. It appears more laid back and relaxed, less pretentious and showy…