Showing posts with label winery tour. Show all posts
Showing posts with label winery tour. Show all posts

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Winery Tour and Tasting at Clos du Val (Napa Valley, CA)

Napa Valley is famous for their Cabernet Sauvignon wines, and in large part that is due to the grapes grown in the Stags Leap District. This area gets the heat that comes down from Calistoga and he breeze from San Pablo Bay, creating a micro climate that is apparently perfect for Cabernet Sauvignon.

Clos du Val is one of the early wineries to open in Stags Leap District. Stags Leap District is the first (and smallest) appellation in Napa Valley and it is best known for the Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, there are now 107 appellations (known as American Viticultural Area, or AVA).
Clos du Val
Initially after opening the winery, Clos du Val was making 90,000 cases of wines that are easy on the wallet, but about 40 years ago, the winery decided to return to their roots and make the best Cabernet Sauvignon they can make. They cut down production to 30,000 cases to focus on making high quality estate wines.

For our tour and tasting, we started in the old tasting room with a taste of the 2017 Estate Pinot Noir Rosé from Carneros.

Clos du Val rose
Photo: @foodiesnapstagram

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Giveaway! Temecula Valley's World of Wine 2015 (March 7-8, 2015)

Love wine? You can spend a whole weekend touring and tasting the wineries in Temecula Valley during next weekend's World of Wine weekend!

With this 2-day event you get a passport that you can use for barrel tasting and food pairing at more than 30 participating wineries along Rancho California and DePortola Roads. It's taking place next weekend on March 7-March 8, 2015 and the participating wineries will be open from 10am-4:30pm.
It's a self-drive tour and you get the wineries to stamp your passport along the way! This winter barrel tasting gives people a sneak peek of the upcoming spring releases.

The 2-day passport is $99 or you can also purchase a Sunday-only passport for $79. You can purchase tickets or find out more information here. Or go here for more information on lodging or wine tour packages.

Now, on to the good stuff, though. A giveaway! Maybe all this sounds great to you - wandering around Temecula Valley while drinking wine, but you need a little push to go there ... well, from now until midnight on Wednesday you can enter to win two Sunday-only passports ($158 value)! Just follow the instructions below and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Last Los Angeles Winery and Wines from Down Under

Seven years in Los Angeles and there are still so many things I did not know about this city. Foodblogging has certainly led me to explore much more than I otherwise would, driving all over scouring all the food has to offer. Yet when a press release came about a wine tasting at San Antonio Winery I was definitely surprised. Los Angeles has a winery?

San Antonio Winery is the last remaining winery in Los Angeles, having survived the depression that shuttered many others by selling sacramental wines.

That's not what we were about to have, of course. San Antonio Winery is now back in full business and is known for their dessert wines -- I had a tour of the winery but this post will come later.

I was invited to cover the wine tasting from Down Under. Yep, Australia and New Zealand, paired with a full lunch featuring (naturally) Australian and New Zealand dishes, held at their lovely large tasting room. While following a powerpoint presentation of different regions of Oz and NZ and the wines we were tasting, we started devouring and drinking.

Shrimp off the Barbie with mango pickle
paired with Kono Sauvignon Blanc 2008
For these special events, San Antonio Winery brings in an outside chef named Chef Claud to prepare the food, and I have to say he does a good job. I wasn't sure what to expect food-wise since I was at a winery in downtown LA but the shrimp was the introduction to a great meal.
The shrimp had that nice slightly-charred-barbecue flavor that goes well with the tartness of the mango.

The paired wine was a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough. Marlborough is famous for its Sauvignon Blancs and Kono is a good inexpensive representation of this regional specialty.

Pan Seared Barramundi (Green onion basmati rice, tomato fondue)
paired with D'Arenberg "Hermit Crab" Viognier Marsanne 2008
and Ferngrove Semillion-Sauvignon Blanc 2006
We all loved the barramundi. Apparently barramundi is recently aquafarmed and is considered the most sustainable fish on the planet. That's good to know since it was delicioso. Chef Claud did a great job with the fish. Tender and moist and full of flavor, the well-cooked fish also paired nicely with the tomatoes and the fragrant basmati.

With this dish we saw the difference between tasting wine and pairing wine with food. The "Hermit Crab" Viognier was a wonderful wine that was refreshing and crisp, while by itself the Ferngrove Semillon-Sauvignon Blanc paled in comparison. With the food though, I much preferred the latter.

New Zealand Lamb Chop (Roasted sweet potatoes, stewed eggplant)
paired with D'Arenberg "Laughing Magpie" Shiraz Viognier 2007
and Penley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006

Another great dish, with a well-cooked and well-seasoned lamb chop. Medium rare all the way through, the way I like it. I didn't think grabbing the bones with my fingers was appropriate for the occasion but I managed to clean it up with my fork and knife.

The second wine was pretty earthy, I didn't like drinking it on its own but it paired well with the lamb.

Australian Cheddar with Sea Biscuit Crackers & Cherries

paired with Ferngrove "Dragon" Shiraz 2005
The pink marbling on the cheese is the result of cranberries. Smooth and mildly sharp, this was one delicious cheese.

The pairing was my favorite wine of the day, the Ferngrove "Dragon" Shiraz.
Fruity and smooth, this was an easily drinkable wine with plenty of flavor.

Lamingtons Cake (Chocolate dipped cake w shredded coconut & Bitter chocolate sauce)
A pound-cake like cake with coconut, dipped in chocolate, and then further dressed in more chocolate sauce. Rich and heavy, but satisfying.

paired with Wyndham Estate "Bin 555" Sparkling Shiraz

This is the second sparkling syrah I've ever had (the first was the Black Chook sparkling syrah) and they are becoming one of my drinks of choice since it is refreshing like champagne or prosecco yet has deeper flavors. It's a nice way to either kick off or end an occasion.

A parting gift from San Antonio Winery - a cap with a clever message.

Next up at San Antonio Winery: "Boutique Beer Tasting and Food Pairing" Aug. 9, "Taste of the Americas" September 20, and "Taste of Italy" October 25. $50 pp.

San Antonio Winery
737 Lamar Street
Los Angeles, CA 90031
(323) 223-1401.

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