Wednesday, May 5, 2010

More wining all over the place...and some whining as well...

I've been thinking about all the events I've been to in the last couple of weeks - and there have been several - but I've had a hard time writing about anything because I've been so overwhelmed by the pain in my neck and shoulder.

After being in pain for so long that I don't remember not being in pain, I finally got my doctor to prescribe an MRI to find out what was going on.  After the results came back - and I already knew that there were bone spurs in the shoulder - the conversation with the doctor went something like this:  "There's a tear in the rotator cuff, and I'm going to refer you to a physical therapist.  I've had a lot of experience with rotator cuff injuries, and PT is definitely the place to start before we even talk about surgery.  Surgery is a last resort."

When I went to the physical therapist, he read the results of the MRI, said there was a LOT going on in the shoulder and in evaluating my range of motion seemed surprised that I could actually move my shoulder at all because there was SO much damage!  But he agreed with my doctor that PT is the first step, and we'll know within a short time if surgery is the answer.

So I've been going to PT 3 times/week, and have come home so worn out that I just have not been able to stand the thought of sitting at the computer and typing - even if IS about my favorite subject.  What has been extra hard is that I am unable to open a bottle of wine without pain! 

I do want to write about the LearnAboutWine Big Malibu tasting back on 4/24, where Casa Dumetz (no web site yet) winemaker Emilio Estevez gave me his own glass of wine to taste (a barrel sample of his 2009 Pinot Noir), and where I discovered Church Estates Pinot Noir (winemaker Bruno D'Alfonso of Badge fame and others).  I also met the proprietors of Chocolate Palace, conveniently located in Valley Village - amazing cookies and confections!  A perfect day at Charme D'Antan and the Cornell Winery in the Malibu foothills, hanging with the LAW crew, tasting more wines at Cornell after the event was over, and finished by a delicious dinner at Fab's Corner Cucina in Sherman Oaks.

And I do want to write about the Delicious Wine Tour of French winemakers who are looking for distributors in the US.  I expected to be there for an hour or two; instead, JD and I arrived at 11 a.m. and didn't leave until almost 4 p.m.!  There were so many wines new to me to try, and so much to learn.  Plus, we were able to chat with some folks we don't see too often:  Wine Educator Yvonne Rich - who just turned 90 and is still teaching about wine; Martin Wiener - who knows more about more wines than just about anyone I've ever known, and is willing to tell you about all of them.

And I do want to write about Eve's Wine 101 - Wine blogger and publicity maven Eve Hammond Bushman, who slaved for an evening at the Valencia Wine Company, pouring wines to benefit her local house of worship.  She charmed participants into sharing their wines with her, while sneaking bread and cheese off her customers' plates.  JD and I quaffed a 2005 Domaine de L'Abbaye du Petit Quincy red Burgundy while nibbling on English Cheddar with carmelized onions, Brie, smoked Gouda, Swiss, prosciutto, dry salami, Greek olives, and Lavosh crackers.  Delish and fun.  We were sorry to leave so early, but it was a Tuesday night, and morning comes quickly for those of us with day jobs.

And I do want to write about my upcoming Grape of the Night event, also at the Valencia Wine Company, on Monday, May 10 at 7 p.m.  We'll be talking about Paso Robles, one of my favorite terroirs in California.  Folks who want to attend only have to purchase a bottle of wine from the store - and proprietor Guy LeLarge has a diverse inventory of wines for us to share.  Hope to see you there!

And I do want to write about the wonderful afternoon of barrel sampling at the D'Argenzio Enoteca in Burbank.  Winemaker Ray D'Argenzio brought 6 barrels of new wines from the winery in Santa Rosa to the Enoteca (wine shop) in Burbank.  The whole family was there - Ray's twin brother Richard, who runs the Enoteca, his daughter Breanna (pictured left), who is learning to make wine in her own image - we bought a couple of bottles - futures, that is - of her Sangiovese which is named for the village in Italy from which the D'Argenzio family originated, Sant’Angelo (near Avellino), various wives and cousins, and a charming employee, Trevor, who definitely added to the ambiance.  Added to that was the pleasure of spending time with 'Don' Alfonso D'Argenzio, who has been making gorgeous custom cabinets in Burbank since the 1940's, and who regaled us with stories of the wineries that used to exist in the San Fernando Valley.  That major artery that runs through the Valley - Vineland - didn't come by that name by accident.  The Valley was an agricultural paradise - vineyards, orange groves, orchards.  Now only the vestiges remain in our memories.

It's been a busy few weeks, and I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed by the richness of my life, which is somewhat offset by the pain in my shoulder!  Luckily, drinking good wine with good friends eases the pain.



Eve said...

Hope we have enough wine tonight to dull some of that pain - I'm so sorry! And I've got to come to Burbank soon too! You make it sound so good.

Goddess of Wine said...

Thanks, Eve. I'm really looking forward to tasting some great Paso wines tonight! And I've found that a glass or of wine actually turns off the pain receptors in my little brain more effectively than ibuprofen! See you later!