|The Goddess & JD|
First, I left the earth job. Yep, retired several years earlier than originally planned. It's all Goddess of Wine now! A bit daunting, but wine gigs are coming in, so I know I can make it happen.
Second, because I now have time during the day, I've gone to wine events that I would have previously covered by proxy via JD. He's been at some of them, too, but he's been busy consulting at various places, so it's lucky I've been available.
I still owe you all the September write-up of the Wineaux virtual visit to Veneto, a delicious evening of Italian wines and dinner whipped up by the tireless Xochitl. I know the three of you readers have been waiting for it. ;-)
JD and I had a tasty and educational time at the 2014 Santa Barbara Vintner's Celebration of Harvest. It's always a treat to hear winemakers tell their stories, and this collection of winemakers provided a great overview of the Santa Ynez Valley. From old hands Richard Sanford, Dick Doré and Doug Margerum to the "new" kids Andrew Murray, Peter Stolpman, and Sonja Magdevski, the stories about the trials and tribulations of being a winemaker were fascinating. There will be a full write-up shortly.
We dashed home, rested for a few minutes and I headed to Il Grano in West LA to meet winemaker Pere Ventura and taste his refreshing Cavas - three of them - paired beautifully with small plates from Il Grano. Also a treat, hanging out with old friends Ian Blackburn and Eve (and Ed) Bushman and new friends Cori Solomon and Melody Dosch. Pere and I bonded over my poor Spanish and his much better English. Hope he finds distribution in the US, because his wines are just wonderful. The full write-up will appear shortly, too.
Shortly after that, JD and I hit up the Wine House for their presentation of Catalonian wines. The short seminar about the Catalan region of Spain and the subsequent tasting of wines made from both indigenous and French grapes, paired with the Wine House's excellent tapas made for a delicious experience.
And just this week, I was invited to a sampling of Champagne Jacquart at the Artisan Cheese Gallery in Studio City. Reps Diane Gonzalez (a beautiful Frenchwoman) and the charming Ki Punwar poured 4 distinctive bubblies made by winemaker Floriane Eznack, paired with rich cheeses supplied by ACG owner Melody Dosch. Tres bon!
Business meetings with various wine, food and lifestyle partners are taking up much of my time, as well as private classes and events where I get to hold forth on wine, are also filling up the schedule. I was afraid I wouldn't have anything to do, but I'm busier than ever!
So, please stay tuned. And, if you're in the Solvang area on November 13th, come on by for an evening of Holiday Wine pairing tips at The Good Life Cellar, from 7 - 9 PM. It'll be fun! Cheers!