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Archive for the category “Small Bites”

Wine and Fire, Ha-cha-cha-cha…

Wine and Fire Santa Rita Hills

Sometimes one needs to step away from the familiar of one’s immediate surroundings and spend some time exploring areas that are close but oft forgotten. So when the opportunity came up to go to Wine and Fire put on by the Santa Rita Hills Wine Alliance and region, located about an hour south of us, in Lompoc, it was a no brainer. First it helped get my bearings as I was always confusing Santa Lucia Highlands (north in Monterey County) and Santa Rita Hills (south in Santa Barbara County) with each other. Aside from the directional confusion, I realized that the Highlands focus more on Bordeaux and Southern Rhone with some Burgundian varietals thrown in, where as the Hills focus on Burgundian and Northern Rhone varietals with a little Bordeaux thrown into the mix. Read more…

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A Heavenly Emporium Experience

Heavenly Emporium

I had the good fortune of attending an awesome brownie and wine pairing evening at the Grape Emporium owned by David and Annie Wilson in Atascadero and Heavenly Squared Brownie Company. You may remember I’ve written about David before as he was my Greek Ambassador counterpart, and I’ve had the opportunity to be interviewed on his radio program on several occasions. The thing about doing a tasting event like this at the Grape Emporium, is that David is a brilliant mad scientist when it comes to blending various wines and creating something all together new, which is an unusual experience in any wine shop. Read more…

I love my mother…Earth

Earth Day Food & Wine Fest at Castor Cellars

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE my planet. Whether you call her Earth, Gaia, Mother, or Terra she is the only planet we have and celebrating Earth Day is a celebration of all that we as a species should hold dear. The 8th Annual Earth Day Food and Wine Festival held at Castoro Cellars, was quite an event and according to vendors, one of the most well-organized events they’ve ever participated in. Read more…

Tiny Bubbles…By the Sea

Champagne Sabre

 

We attended the first annual BubblyFest by the sea, and although there are similar events in Europe and even South Africa, this is the only Sparkling Wine and Champagne Festival in the United States. Being that October is probably one of the most temperate times of year here on the Central Coast, the weather averages 75 degrees during the day and can drop to around 50 at night, this month is ideal for having a festival like this. The outdoor, weekend long event opened with a Great Gatsby themed cocktail party, and closing brunch taking place at Dolphin Bay Resort and the Grand Tasting along with a Press Preview, held at the SeaCrest Resort. As I mentioned the final event, was a Sunday brunch; unfortunately we were unable to attend that event so I can’t comment and will only be discussing the events we actually attended. Read more…

Shuck ’em and Suck ’em!

Oyster Festival 2013 Winners

Oysters are a bivalve mollusk that are so visually unappetizing, on first glance one must ask “why on earth would anyone want to eat THAT?” The outside shell is typically dingy, rough and rock hard; and once opened, the oyster it’s self looks like a giant, slimy glob, of greyish phlegm. Sounds MmmmmMmmm tasty! Right? Well actually, that is right! Done well, whether cooked or raw (my personal preference) oysters are, quite delicious. In this bigger is better world, my personal opinion when it comes to oysters is, smaller varieties like Beausoleils or Kumomotos are definitely better. But another variety I like, are Pacific Gold Oysters, locally farmed, and cultivated by the Morro Bay Oyster Company right here on the Central Coast.  Pacific Golds range from small to about medium-sized and are quite yummy with a fresh ocean brininess and a melon rind finish that when topped with anything from a mignonette to lemon and /or cocktail sauce highlight the natural flavors beautifully.  And right here on the Central Coast to celebrate our wonderful oysters, we had the 2nd Annual Morro Bay Oyster and Music Festival which has already been named #4 of the top 10 Oyster Festivals in the Country! Read more…

Savoring the Sunset

Sunset at the Castle

Sunsets are gorgeous, but there is something magical about sunsets on the Central Coast. Maybe it’s the clear, smog, free skies or the sparkling blue of the Pacific in conjunction with those smog, free skies. Whatever it is, when you add watching it from the balconies of a 1920s era castle that sunset becomes absolutely MIND BLOWING! Sadly pictures taken with an Iphone 4 can’t do it justice. Read more…

Mac ATTACK!!!

Nom, nom, nom

You have to have been living under a rock to not know that we were going to the Paso Robles Gourmet Macaroni and Cheese Festival on August 24th.  Macaroni and Cheese is one of those comfort foods that instantly takes me back to childhood and hungry for Kraft Mac and cheese with hotdogs, so I was beyond looking forward to this. The Mac and Cheese Fest is a charitable event put together by American General Media to benefit Zoo to You a non-profit organization through the Paso Robles Zoo dedicated to bringing education and adventure to kids, by teaching conservation through interaction. Read more…

Rollin’ Rollin’ Rollin’…SLO Wiiine! (Day 2)

Passport

After a crazy schedule filled with wonderful epicurean adventures, I’m finally getting around to writing about Day 2 of Rolling out the Barrels. Because even though we hit 8 wineries, we didn’t feel the need to race around from one place to the other so we could give a report on ALL the pairings (in case some place ran out) and offerings like the first day, the 2nd day was much more chill for us. There were fewer places offering food pairings and in general there was more of just a come on in and drink vibe, all around. Read more…

Hog Heaven at Bacon & Barrels

These are probably two of my favorite words in the whole English Language, besides words like Love and Peace.  As I told the organizer, this was one of the most brilliantly named events I’ve ever heard, everything explained in two simple words…Bacon & Barrels. And really after that what else needs to be said? I was eagerly anticipating this event, and apparently I wasn’t the only one, when tickets went on sale for the July 19-21 2013 event on April 1st, it sold out within 2 weeks. Read more…

Getting Uncorked at Forks and Corks!!

The Paso Forks and Corks Festival

The day started out a bit shaky, because Doug woke up feeling really nauseous and as much as I tried to help settle his stomach, the poor guy was a mess and ended up having to back out at the last-minute. So he took me over to meet up with the “party” bus that was going to take me and the other members of the #ShareSLO Street team up to Halter ranch  for the Paso Forks and Corks Festival benefiting MUST Charities a local charity who alongside other local organizations work to create long-term, sustainable transformation within the region.

#ShareSLO Street team and Cork Dorks!

We arrived at Halter Ranch and went to check in at the winery but discovered that the check in point was a bit further down the road. We weren’t deterred though, we were a little early so what else better to do than some wine tasting to kick off the day! But we can talk about that in another blog, this blog is about Forks and Corks! And be prepared it’s going to be long…because there is so much to talk about. So make sure you grab a glass of wine before sitting on a comfy chair or couch and put your feet up, for a detailed trip through the Forks and Corks festival. Read more…

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