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Featured Articles

Top Santa Cruz Mountains Vintners Share Their Stories and Wine

Classes Start Dec. 2 - Sparkling Wines, With Barry Jackson of Equinox Champagne Cellar

Barry jackson of Equinox Champagne Cellars leads a class on Champagne. Photo by Mary LindsayThe Surf City Vintners group of wineries has announced their Winter 2012/2013 ‘semester’ of Surf City Wine University, a series of wine appreciation classes that give wine lovers the opportunity to taste and learn more about wine from a group of master vintners in an informal, enjoyable winery setting.

The winter ‘semester’ starts Dec. 2 with a class on sparkling wines with Barry Jackson of Equinox Champagne Cellars – just in time for the holidays and New Year’s. Classes continue with one class a month into April, 2013, and include: Wine Tasting 101 with Michael Sones of Sones Cellars; Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir; Iberian Wines with Jeff Emery of Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard / Quinta Cruz; Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir, with Joe Miller of Rexford Winery; and Chardonnay Styles with Steve Storrs of Storrs Winery. Classes are held Sundays, noon-2 p.m. at the instructor winemaker’s tasting room/winery.

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Marin Greek Festival’s Greek Dining and Wine Tasting Experience.

Friday, May 23, 5:30-8:30pm – Nativity of Christ Church, 1110 Highland Drive, Novato

Authentic Greek delicacies enjoyed in the old world ambiance of our

Greek Village on the hill. Sample delicious wines from Napa & Sonoma wineries.

Free Admission/$15 tasting fee to sample wines

Wine Walk by the Sea

 By Grace Ertel

Carmel Beach, Photo by Paul GahaganThe area around the Monterey Peninsula has its share of wineries and what could be more pleasant than tasting the local wines (and cheeses) in Carmel-by-the Sea. On a self-guided walking tour you’ll find at least seven wine tasting bars plus The Cheese Shop offering samples – all within fairly close proximity.

The Cheese Shop, operating in Carmel for more than 30 years, carries both local cheese and some from around the world. Indeed, when we arrived at our small, family-owned hotel called the Hofsas House in Carmel, we were presented with a bottle of Rubystone wine from Ventana Winery plus some Old Amsterdam cheese from the Cheese Shop. And if we had brought Fido, he would have been presented with his own Frisbee.

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What’s New in Mendocino County

Remodel of First Inn on Mendocino Coast & Newest Tasting Room in Anderson Valley – Two New Restaurants – A Cheese Creamery, a Cider Mill, an Educational Workshop Series – And More!

From delicious ventures and openings on the food and wine front, to the reinvention of an historic lodging establishment, to an eclectic series of workshops designed to showcase the best that the area has to offer, the plethora of openings and events this Summer make it an exciting time to visit in Mendocino County, Northern California.

Testa Vineyards

The tasting room at Testa VineyardsLocated in a refurbished barn, the new tasting room addition at Testa Vineyards boasts a fishing pond lined with geese and other wildlife and a sprawling picnic area under the shade of a giant walnut tree. Visitors (along with kids and pets) are welcome to bring sandwiches and snacks and enjoy a day in the sun sampling certified organic Carignane, Petite Sirah, Grenache, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon and more. Tasting room hours:  Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 11 am to 5 pm.

Calpella | 707.485.705 |

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Grilled Salmon with Honey & Apricot Teriyaki Glaze

paired with

Vinavanti La Zingara

San Diego’s Vinavanti offers up this delightful pairing of their La Zingara, a blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio paired with their grilled salmon that’s glazed with an Asian inspired sauce flavored with apricots and mirin. Enjoy this on the patio while the warm evenings of late Summer blend into early Fall.

Click here for the recipe…..


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