Friday, April 14, 2017


April Fools Day was on a Saturday this year. We decided to do a 'backwards' Dinner. Starting at the end and finishing at the beginning.  We were a little uncertain as the theme is very different from our normal. To our surprise, this Event Sold Out quickly.

We started with Dessert from Patisserie Angelica cheesecake and added many sides, as if it were a Cheese Plate. Served with two wines, 2013 Brut Rose' and 2013 Valdiguie.

 The Cheesecake was circled with options to add, Peach Habanero, Plum Chutney, Fig and Orange Spread, Marcona Almonds, Cured Lemon and Candied Walnuts. The idea was to enhance the cheesecake and taste the wine options. Cheesecake doesn't generally go with wine unless it's some type of Port or Dessert Wine. So the plan to influence the flavor to enable the wine to possibilities. The Brut Rose and our 2013 Valdiguie were the best wines options. Almost all liked the Sparkling with many of the enhancers and we had a like for the plum chutney with the Valdiguie. Might not try this one again.

Next up Entrée - Steak au poivre with local black trumpet mushrooms. We put two wines, Mat's pick and my pick.

 A 2009 TnT Pinot Noir and our 2014 Syrah. The group was divided 50/50 although everyone loved both of the wines. The pairing was even steven. I did like the 2009 TnT Pinot with the course which was Mat's wine pick.

Salad Course next - Classic Wedge Salad. We served three wines, Chardonnay, Rose' and Pinot

 The fourth course was the appetizer, Prawn Cocktail which was served with the 2014 Chardonnay and Brut Rose. The crowd was full and kind of overwhelmed by the backwards influence that they had not realized that eating your Entrée so early would leave little room.  I chose the Brut Rose and the 2016 Rose' of Pinot Noir equally.

The table did not look like this at the end of the evening but many April Fools jokes were discussed. It will be many years before we have this first of April fall on a Saturday to entice our Foodie fans to partake.
Next up, April 2nd.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

MARCH Outings so far...

Backyard Restaurant in Forestville does charcuterie....

 The Shuckery in Petaluma, we had oysters, clams and mussels, shrimp and grits, all great. But the blackened Tuna was a stand out...
 Twist Café in Forestville catered our Chamber mixer this month and this Salmon Cheesecake went great with our Brut Rose' and Chardonnay. They also served Coq'au vin which was Fab with Pinot.
A little pre theatre in Santa Rosa at Khoom Lanna...spinach bundles of joy

                              A favorite, they call them summer rolls, with peanut sauce.
                                                                            A lot more March to come, come back soon.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

 February 2017

Mushroom Foray and Crab Dinner

We usually only do one event per month although a request for a Crab Dinner at the Tasting Room sounded so great, how could we refuse!

Feb. 4th was the Annual Mushroom Foray in Cazadero. We had another sold out crowd. This year we had a couple from Upstate New York, a group from Reno and many from San Francisco and Alameda. So great to have these people make the extra effort to enjoy our event.

We were extremely lucky with the weather, a break from rain made for an ever so delightful hike in the woods. It started raining later in the day when we were done.

 Mat the chef busy in the kitchen preparing lunch for 40. Liberty Duck Confit, black Trumpet Mashed Potatoes,  and Caesar Salad with Nightengale croutons.

The creek under the bridge has never been so full.

 The group gathered around the display of mushrooms listening to David explain the world of mushrooms. What to eat and not and so mush more, the crowd is paying close attention.

Next up, our Crab Dinner

With Dungeness crab being such a local favorite, we eat as much as we can during the short season from late November til the start of Spring. There is so much to do with Crab!

Here we go, 14 people, 15 large crabs and many Paul Mathew wines paired. Let's see what wines were chosen as the best pairing for each course.

Crab Bisque started this evening off. This traditional soup is rich and wonderful. We paired it with three wines, Rose' of Pinot, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir...the winner was the chardonnay.

Crab Salad up next, with avacado. We paired this with all white wines, Brut Rose', Gewurz, Chardonnay and Rose' of Pinot Noir. We had a three way tie, between Brut Rose, Gewurz and Chardonnay

Crab Cakes, who doesn't love eating crab that was shelled for you, combined with bell pepper, herbs and spices and lightly pan fried, yes please. And it pairs with all the wines we try, Rose', Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Theb favorite of this evening was Brut Rose'.

         One of our guests thought the Chardonnay was best with every course,
                                                                                                he loves crab with Chardonnay.

Our house hold favorite crab preparation, roast crab. This is the first meal Mat made for me and we continue to enjoy it at the start of every crab season until we need to try a different recipe. We have served this to all our friends and it never siezes to please. Roast crab tossed with garlic, thyme, fennel, chile flakes and olive oil - then baked. Pinot Noir won the best wine pairing.

The chef comes out....

A little heart cookie to finish our February Foodie dinner. All you need is LOVE!

Monday, February 6, 2017

January 2017

 Life is a puzzle

This January Sonoma County has had a lot of rain! The draught is considered over, Tahoe has had a great ski season and it was a perfect month to puzzle.

At the start of the rainy days I was inspired to buy a puzzle for the tasting room, for me and our many visitors. It is so funny to see some people gravitate towards the puzzle and stay longer than anticipated or those who are kinda frighten by the thought of looking at a piece of a board that hasn't found it's place.

It's been clear to me for over twenty years that life is a puzzle. People enter your person puzzle and fit in the story in some sort of way, some easy and some not so. Some predominant and some in the background. I always used to think of life as a path that has short cuts and detours but the end result no matter the length of time to get there was determined at birth. Now a puzzle seems like a better anaology.

Our January puzzle has brought contemplation and distraction during a very difficult start to a new year. I think this year, many puzzles will be pondered over and hopefully sort themselves out with less pain and more joy than is currently appearing.

Bonding over the puzzle has been interesting too. The conversation is different, the temperament is different and the lack of concern of what's going on is definitely different, this is where we can maintain a sense of indifference starring at a world of pieces.
I chose a beautiful serene puzzle of Cinque Terra with it's incredible colorful buildings, boats, skies and sea. Mmmm, maybe this is where I'm supposed to visit next.

Ahhh, completion. Thank you puzzlers, Lets just keep puzzling and drinking wine.