Sharing My Passion of Wine With You

I haven’t always had a passion for wine.  Years ago, I used to own a cheese company. While at the Farmer’s Market one Wednesday afternoon, one of our clients invited me to attend a wine education course at a local winery and asked that I bring some cheese to share with everyone.  I thought it might be fun to do, so I went.  I was intimidated to say the least.  I mean, yes, I grew up with wine at our table – my Mom is from Italy, my Dad from Argentina – so it wasn’t like I didn’t know that wine came from grapes or anything like that.  But there were these people, sitting in chairs, all sipping wines and talking about them in a language I didn’t quite understand and the only thing I could think of was how good a cold beer would taste right about now.

Since that day, I’ve immersed myself in the world of wines – tasting every single one I can get my hands on.  I’ve researched wines and winemakers and learned why they are so passionate about their crafts – and I want to be a part of that world.  Every wine has a story as to how it came about, whether it be the Catholic Priest in China making wine for Mass or the dreamer from Davis, California who interned at a winery in Napa – every wine has a history that adds to its mystique, to its character, to its being. This is what intrigues me, not the nose, not its taste, but its Story.

It’s the Story of the wine that makes me linger on the aroma just a little longer to see if it can transport me their origin.  The tranquility of the vineyard, the smell of the grapes, the dirt, the fruit, the weather of where the grapes were grown. To see if the aroma has a calming affect on me, makes me anxious, or makes me cringe.

It’s the Story of the wine that makes me appreciate the color of the wine.  The care that was taken to obtain just the right hues of red and white and the science, or accidents, utilized to get the color just right.  It is that story that makes me want to wash my comforter in it so that my bedroom can pay homage to its shade – something that my good friends laugh at because every time I taste a red wine that holds that deep, rich shade, I express my desire to own a comforter in that color – maybe one day.

It’s the Story that influences the taste of the wine.  A wine that was just “ok” takes on a new life when you learn that the winemaker named it after his Nanny because while growing up, she was the one that taught him about wine and to this day he wants to pay her homage for teaching him the love of wine, or the wine that was named after the Grandfather who instilled values of hard work and appreciation for the land into the Grandchildren.

Wine may be perishable, but their stories are not. Their stories live on as long as they have a voice and a platform.  Every one of us has a story, and thus has found a passion.  Wine is my passion. Maybe it’s because I grew up loving to read, that I can relate to wine. It is my new book of choice, something I can’t download on my iPad, but rather a vessel that I can touch, feel, taste, and see. Something that I can experience with its Author who may be sharing a glass with me.  It is a glimpse in the life of this fairy tale I can be a part of and where we all live happily ever after…

The Peanut Butter Sandwich You Can’t Live Without!

Ponder this….. A proverbial fountain of purple pageantry. A potable piece of perfection poised to pique your curiosity. A paragon of playful purpletude packed with a passel of perky, positively pleasing grape-popsicley flavor. A protest against pious pundits and prognosticators? Possibly…. (Professor Peabody’s Purple Potion)

Growing up, I remember my mom making us peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  It was probably one of the first sandwiches I learned how to make.  But over the years, it became pretty forgettable.  I have peanut butter, it’s in the pantry and as an adult, it has transitioned to become an ingredient in protein shakes.  Enter Purple.

Purple is a deliciously delicious wine made by Quady Winery of Madera, California.  I remember first trying it a few years back and immediately thinking this was liquid jelly. And what goes with jelly?  Peanut Butter!

So we’ve revamped the traditional PB&J sandwich and made it age appropriate for those of legal drink ing age, say Hello to the new and improved Deconstructed Peanut Butter Sandwiches with Purple Jelly Chasers!  This is what you need:

Deconstructed Peanut Butter Sandwich with Purple Jelly Chasers
Author: 
Serves: varies
 
An age appropriate spin on the traditional PB&J for those over the age of 21!
Ingredients
  • 1 bottle of Purple by Quady Winery (available at www.quadywinery.com)
  • 2-3 English Muffins, toasted, but not too crunchy
  • Peanut Butter of your choice
Instructions
  1. Open your bottle of Purple and taste a little bit, just to make sure you approve.
  2. Split the English Muffins in half, and then cut each slice into wedges.
  3. Spoon a big glob of Peanut Butter on to a serving dish.
  4. Pour your guests some Purple (remember, this is sweet, so about a 3 oz pour should be ok to start).
  5. Take an English Muffin wedge, drag it through the peanut butter and eat.
  6. Take a sip of Purple as a chaser.
  7. Repeat.

 

Let me know what you think!

A List of Haunted Wineries

With Halloween less than 48 hours away, I can’t help but think of haunted houses and trick-or-treaters.  Just today my little niece modeled her princess costume for me, complete with tiara!  But what about adult Halloween get-a-ways?  I’m thinking visiting Haunted Wineries with little bottles of wine clicking in my treat bag is a PERFECT way to spend Halloween!  So I scoured the internet and put together a list of viable Haunted Wineries to visit this season.  What are you doing this Halloween?

  • Mansfield Winery, formerly Franco-Swiss Winery – Napa, CA – According to tradition, Jules Millet, a member of the family who used to own the Franco-Swiss, was murdered right outside the winery’s walls in 1882 and is believed to haunt the winery.  When challenging Ms. Millet to show herself one evening, Ms. Millet made sure to let the knew winery owners know that she was real.   Read more
  • The Winery at Marjim Manor – Appleton, NY – Formerly known as Appleton Hall, The Winery at Marjim Manor produces fruit wines and offers tasting in three different tasting rooms.  Marjim Manor has a history of several deaths which have occurred on the same day at the same time, Thursday 3:00pm.  “The first to die in the house was Lewis Merritt. Lewis’s father, Shubal Scudder Merritt, was the original owner of the house, buying the land in 1834 and building the home soon after. One day Shubal was cleaning his gun when Lewis walked through the French doors. As his father went to turn around, the gun accidentally discharged killing Lewis one Thursday at 3pm. Lewis then haunted the house, paying visits to his father every Thursday at 3 by swinging those same French doors open when his father called his name.”  But that’s not all… Read more
  • Belvoir Winery – Liberty, MO – Built in 1923, the winery spans approximately 240 acres, which used to include a former orphanage, nursing home, hospital and a cemetery set.  There has been reports of singing, hugs and growling in areas which may, or may not, be open to the public. If you’re really into raising your heart beat, you may one to consider one of the winery’s ghost tours, or even spend the evening at their All Night Paranormal Investigation events around Halloween time.   Read more 1 Read more 2
  • Bartholomew Park Winery – Sonoma, CA – Dating back to the 1830s, these grounds have seen different owners.  It wasn’t until 1980, however that the remains of a Madeline were found in the walls during a renovation project.  Madeline is said to grace the halls and the cellar.  Read more  
  • Beaulieu Vineyards – Rutherford, CA – The spirit of Georges de Latour, founder of Beaulieu Vineyards, is believed to keep watch over the wines to this day.  it is said that his kind spirit can be felt in the tasting room and the aging cellar.  Read more 
  • Beringer – St. Helena, CA – Established in 1876-77 by the Beringer Brothers, Fredrick Beringer can often be found roaming the halls of the 2nd story of the Rhine House in the Founders Tasting Room, or walking through walls.  Read more
  • Buena Vista Carneros Winery – Sonoma, CA – In 1862, an earthquake collapsed the exists of the cave where 20 Chinese workers were bottling, labeling and caging champagne.  Due to the racist minds of the time, efforts to save the workers were halted and they were buried alive.  while peering through the gates to the cave, it is not uncommon to feel the cold gusts of energy and feel the sudden sadness of the times.  It is also not uncommon to see lights flickering like those of candles in the distance.  Read more
  • Charles Krug Winery – St. Helena, CA – Displaying an eerie sense of humor, it is unsure as to whether Charles Krug or Cesare Mondavi is heard chuckling near the doors of the aging cellar. Read more
  • Dry Creek Vineyard – Healdsburg, CA – Built on the Pomo Indian Reservation, the ghost of a American Indian Man has been felt in the tasting room.  Read more
  • Frog’s Leap Winery – Rutherford, CA – Mrs. Adamson wasn’t too fond of her husband’s alleged infidelity and haunts the area around Barrel #19 displaying her disapproval.  Guests are said to feel her spirit while in the Barrel’s vicinity. Read more
  • Rubicon Estate Winery, formerly Inglenook Winery – Described as a tall, slender man Gustave Niebaum, is one of the original founders of Inglenook Winery  and one of three men believed to be haunting the grounds of the winery.  Mr. Niebaum is known to keep an eye on the inventory and winemaking equipment. It is not uncommon for Mr. Niebaum to be standing in the tasting room, at the head of the table.  Read more
  • Stags’ Leap Winery – Napa, CA – Once a bordello, Stags’ Leap Winery is said to be haunted by the spirit of one of the young prostitutes that used to work for the establishment.  Her tricks now, however, include walking through rooms and walls of the establishment.  Read more
  • Trefethen Vineyards and Winery – Napa, CA – Originally established as Eschol Winery, Eschol was rumored to be a bootleg operation site during prohibition.  It was the fate of one young thief, hung by bootleggers catching him in the act, that is said to haunt the upstairs area of the winery.  Read more 

Other wineries that are said to be haunted include:

  • abarca1Chateau Montelena – Napa, CA – Twitter user Chris Abarca (@Abarca1) has assured me that he’s visited the winery multiple times and it is haunted. abarca1copy
  • Foppiano Vineyards
  • Geyser Peak Winery
  • Kunde Estate Winery
  • Mayacamas Winery
  • Sebastini Vineyards and Winery
  • St. Clement Vineyards

How did you rate your wine?

90pointsOne of the thing that fascinates me is the amount of importance some wine enthusiasts place on the rating a wine received.  Here’s the thing, I get it.  You seek guidance.  You want to know that you’re not wasting your time tasting an “inferior” wine when you could be sipping a “superior” one.  You want some kind of guarantee that the wine you’re purchasing today will be good when you open it tomorrow, or next week, month, year, or decade.

But, what if I don’t agree with the ratings?  What if that 90 point wine to me is just ‘ok’.  What if I find that the alcohol in some of those wines is so overpowering that I can’t really taste the fruit?  I ask this because this has happened before.  I’ve tasted a wine, with a rated promise that it’s a good one, only to be disappointed with it.  And, this this has happened more than once.  Does that mean that the point system is a moot point?  Does it mean that something is wrong with my palette?  Or, here’s a crazy thought, what if something is wrong with Robert Parker’s palette?

Here’s what I think.  I think that if a wine enthusiast is solely drinking wine with high ratings, that they are robbing themselves of the experience and education of all of the other wines.  There is so much to learn and so many opportunities to learn about wine, why limit yourself to tasting only what someone else thinks is the best?  Do yourselves a favor, create your own rating system.  It can be complicated and point driven, or happy faces, doesn’t matter — just don’t cave to the the ratings of another.  Sure, you can consider them, but do your due diligence and discover new wines, decide which ones you like and rate them your way.

A good friend of mine has always told me that “wine is a journey of discovery” – don’t limit your journey to follow someone else’s map, create your own, discover what you like and what you don’t like. I promise, it will make for so much more interesting conversation next time someone brings up the point value of a wine.

Which Wine Should I Buy

I am blessed in that I know a lot of people and that many of those people are my friends.  I see them around town, on Facebook, and at random events. Eventually we’ll start talking about wines and eventually I’m asked the ever so popular question…. “but how do I know which wine I should buy?”

man-114437_640Here’s the thing — it’s a loaded question, and yet the answer is really simple. Don’t worry, I’ll get to the simple answer eventually.  In the meantime however, I want to share with you why this is a loaded question. It’s loaded because if you want that “perfect” wine, you need to consider some factors, like:

  • Guests.  Who are you serving this wine to? Who is it for?  Do they like wine? Do they know anything about wine?  can they tell the difference between a $5.00 bottle and a 50.00 bottle?  Will they appreciate what you are pouring for them? Will they care?
  • Occasion.  Is this a special occasion?  What’s so special about it? Will you remember the wine in the morning? Have you considered the answer to all of the questions above about the guests that will be there?
  • Food.  Will you be serving food?  Is wine the only beverage you’ll be serving? What type of food will you be serving?  Seafood? Poultry? Meat? Pork? Vegetables? What are the seasonings?  Is there a lot of Garlic or Pepper?  Is it spicy? Sweet? Tart? Is it fried? Baked? Grilled? How many courses are there?  Is it a sit-down dinner or pot-luck? did you want one wine for the whole meal or did you want to change it up and have different wines with every course? Who is cooking, you or a caterer? Or are we pairing this wine with an In-n-Out burger?  Is it a regular hamburger, cheese burger, animal-style or mustard grilled?  Again, have you considered the answer to all of the questions about the guests and the occasion?
  • Budget.  How much did you want to spend on wine?  Yup, that’s the only question in this category  – because, let’s face it, you have a too many things already on your mind about the guests, occasion and the food!

“Which wine should I buy” is a loaded question because there are just way too many things to consider.  Ready for the simple answer now?  It’s only 1 sentence, so pay attention….  If you’ve tried it and you like it and its within your budget, buy it.

Did you get that?  Let’s face it, if you’re reading my blog, and you’re the one that’s going to be buying the wine, and hosting guests and feeding them – shouldn’t you also enjoy it?  AND, if you like it, chances are that a good number of your guests will too.  So here’s the answer again, write it down, memorize it, tell your friends (or don’t tell them), but always remember.  When you’re buying wine, ask yourself:  Have I tried it?  Do I like it?  Is it in my budget?.  If the answer to ALL of these questions is “yes” – pay the man because you’ve found the perfect wine!

Wine Tasting and Lesson Fundraiser

Wine Tasting and Lesson:
Fundraiser for the Unitarian Universalists of SCV
Santa Clarita Valley Winery Crush Pad

SANTA CLARITA, CA – The SCV Custom Crush Services, the only winemaking facility in Santa Clarita, will play wine tasting host and wine educator in a fast-approaching fundraiser on Sunday, May 18 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. A large portion of the event’s proceeds will benefit the work of the Unitarian Universalists of Santa Clarita. Just like in the UUofSCV church, all are welcome to attend.

For a $25 fee guests will be able to tour Santa Clarita’s first licensed and bonded winemaking facility, learn about winemaking and taste through all of the wines currently available for purchase, and some still in the oak barrels, from our local Pulchella Winery. Small bites such as cheese and crackers, prepared by church members, will also be included in the ticket price.

Winemakers Nate Hasper and Steve Lemley, will lead the event. Lemley said, “We will be tasting the ‘2012 No Excuses’ vintage – we dubbed our new releases this way because after five years we had the warmer weather we wanted, grown personal relationships with the growers and are now enjoying the “fruits” of our long-term contracts with farms.”

Reserve your tickets by visiting http://uuofscv.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=192 which will route you to our PayPal link. A maximum of 70 guests can attend, so reserve your spot quickly. For more information on SCV Custom Crush Services see: http://www.scvwinery.com/

Press only contact: eve@evewine101.com

Discover A Heavenly Oasis Just Outside of Downtown Los Angeles

Discover A Heavenly Oasis Just Outside of Downtown
Los Angeles of Decadent Wine+Food+Music at the 2nd Annual Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Wine & Jazz Festival
 
Los Angeles County (March 27, 2014) – The Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Association  2nd Annual Vintners Festival & Jazz In the Vineyard Event on Saturday, April 26, from 11am-4pm, at Reyes Winery in Agua Dulce, just 45 minutes north of downtown Los Angeles, features an unparalleled mix of great locally-produced wine and food, paired with illustrious live jazz music performed in a breathtakingly beautiful vineyard setting.

“You might say we’ve created a kind of  ‘holy trinity’ for voluptuaries of decadent wine+food+music in a heavenly oasis right outside of Downtown Los Angeles,” says Cyndee Donato of Donato Family Vineyard and Antelope Valley Winery, a Winemaker and member of the Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Association. “And, the beauty of it is, almost no one knows we’re here, so our guests get to be the first to discover this burgeoning, wine frontier.”

Local Wine, Breweries, & Spirits Tastings will be from, among others, San Antonio Winery, —  Alonso Family Vineyards —  Bobcat –Chavez Vineyards– Du Nasi — Golden Star Vineyards  —  Harris Wine Biz  — High Desert Cellars — Coruce Vineyards — Oasis Vineyards — Six Foulkes —Magellan Gin   — Agua Dulce Winery — Absenthe — Pulchella Winery — Rhum Barbancourt   — Reyes Winery — Anhueser-Busch and other SPVVA Members.
Gourmet Bites will be supplied by delicious artisan food producers such as
Le Chene French Cuisine — Portos Bakery — Truffles n Toffee  —  California Bakery — Gourmet Blends and more to be announced.
The 2014 Festival’s Jazz-In-the-Vineyard Musical Lineup includes:
  • Quattro, the 2013 Latin Jazz Grammy Nominee for Best New Artist, a fresh, new innovative ensemble blending  Latin + Pop + Jazz + Classical creating their unique sound. Their debut album is “POPZZICAL”. Read more…
  • Lauren Koval, jazz vocalist & Paul McDonaldkeyboardist and arranger, performing Latin Jazz & Standards from the Great American Songbook. Read more…
  • Jon StephenTropical Brazilian Guitarist, performing his own genre of all original music of magical compositions ranging from smoky jazz to breezy bossa nova to serrano-like flamenco. Read more…
  • Still Moving Project, a group of dedicated, fun-loving musicians, making beautiful original music with a unique brand of melodic rock, country, folk, and jazz
The Arts & Crafts Exhibit will feature local artists including the find woodworks of Carlos Bacelar, Isidora Designs, DeSigns by Sandra Lane, andPrussmeier Pens. Also, MCigar returns with his highly coveted, hand-rolled fine smokes.
A portion of the proceeds from the festival will benefit College of the Canyons, the Institute for the Culinary Arts, scheduled to open fall 2014. Sponsors for the event include Union Bank of California,  Galpin Motors, Rec Solar, TeeItUp, and All-American Containers. For more information on the 2014 Festival, and a up-to-date list of participants including wineries and other vendorsartists’ biographies and photographs, please visit the SPVVA website.
Media Contact: Georgina Stassi, Stassi & Associates, Media Relations for the Wine & Culinary Industrygeorgina.stassi@gmail.com310-613-7445. Find a Media Pass Request Form on SPVVA website. Reyes Winery is located at 10262 Sierra Highway in Agua Dulce, CA 91390.
About Sierra Pelona Valley AVA and SPVVA Vintners Association:
The Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Association is an organization that brings together the talents and resources of its members, partners and community in order to promote the production and appreciation of fine wines grown or produced within the Sierra Pelona Valley AVA. Nestled in the Sierra Pelona Mountains of Southern California, just 30 miles north of downtown Los Angeles, the Sierra Pelona Valley’s untouched natural beauty provides the perfect environment for burgeoning vineyards, boutique wineries and outdoor enthusiasts. Visitors can enjoy a day of discovery and relaxation exploring the area’s fine wineries, tasting rooms, events and hiking trails. For information on how to make the most of your time in Sierra Pelona Valley Wine Country, join the Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners on Facebook and follow along on Twitter.

Wine & Spice 101 – Striking a balance between Wines and Spices

“Ever wanted to learn how to pair wine with your food? Come learn the basics of pairing wines by focusing on the spices used in that dish. Don’t know about Spices? Don’t worry, we’ll cover those too!”

wineandspice101-300x300The Spice In Life in downtown Newhall is proud to be offering cooking courses enhancing your culinary experience.  From wine pairing to pizza making, The Spice In Life is sure to become a culinary hub for foodies in the Santa Clarita Valley. Claudia Sheridan, of atoasttome.com and WSET Level II graduate, will be facilitating monthly courses, Wine and Spice 101, focused on wine and spice education. The first Wine and Spice 101 course takes place Saturday, March 22 from 1:00 – 3:00pm.  Cost is $30/person and includes the wine and spice education, along with sample pairings to taste. The Spice In Life’s March course line-up includes:

Sat, March 8 – Pizza with Chef Cindy – Have you ever wanted to make the perfect pizza?  Come learn how to make delicious pizzas that will make you want to throw out those take-out menus.  $30/person 11:00 – 1:00pm Instructor: Cindy Smith

Thu, Mar 13 – St Patty’s Meal with Chef Liz – Chef Liz Pack from Devine Catering will be teaching us all about Corned Beef, along with roasted Carrots, Cabbage and Potatoes. Come learn her unique way to make this delicious meal for your family and friends, they will Love You! $30/person 7:00 – 9:00pm Instructor: Liz Pack

Sat, Mar 22 – Wine & Spice 101 – Ever wanted to learn how to pair wine with your food? Come learn the basics of pairing wines by focusing on the spices used in that dish.  Don’t know about Spices?  Don’t worry, we’ll cover those too!  $30/person  1:00 – 3:00pm Instructor: Claudia Sheridan

Thu, Mar 27- Spice Rubs with Chef Cindy – Tired of the same old flavors? Come learn how rubs elevate protein in a way you didn’t think was possible. Chef Cindy will teach you how to create a rub, as well as share with you her special “Magic Dust” recipe. $30/person 7:00 – 9:00pm Instructor: Cindy Smith

The Spice in LifeReservations are encouraged as seating is limited for all courses.  Courses include instruction, recipe(s) when available, tastings and an intimate learning environment where students are encouraged to interact, ask questions, and have a great time. For reservations, please contact The Spice In Life at 661-290-2700 or visit the store at 22722 Lyons Ave. #2, Santa Clarita, CA 91321.

Opolo Vineyards takes over for a night

Opolo Vineyards is located on a beautiful 70 acre mountain site in Paso Robles, but tonight they brought their wines to Santa Clarita Valley for a wine pairing dinner at Salt Creek Grille. Dave Nichols, co-owner of Opolo Vineyards, served as host for the evening telling us about the wines and sharing other stories from the vineyard. Dinner began with a generous pour of 2012 Albariño served with Lobster Flatbread Thermidor.  This pairing was a sexy one. The buttery lobster was delicious and the light acidity of the Albariño cut through leaving a lingering sense of Summer to come. IMG_5437_1200x900-300x225

Smoked Duck Breast Salad was served next with Opolo’s 2011 Grande Rouge.  The salad was absolutely delicious, made with Tuscan lettuce, aged goad cheese, blood orange supremes and candied pecans drizzled with a spicy pecan dressing.  The Grande Rouge is made up of Counoise, Grenache, Petite Sirah and Syrah and has the essence of dark berries.  In my opinion, this wine is one of the lighter wines Opolo has made, and I would enjoy it just as much without food as well.  I’ll have to pick up a bottle or 6 next time I’m up in Paso Robles.

IMG_5441_900x1200

Opolo’s 2011 Petite Sirah paired  beautifully with the dry aged New York steak medallions, mashed potatoes and red wine sauce.  The dish included sautéed kale, but I found myself avoiding the kale because, well let’s face it, it is difficult to pair wine with kale and this was no exception.  The wine was big and bold and complimented the steak beautifully.  More please. IMG_5445_1200x900Dessert was a beautiful chocolate filled beignet served alongside stilton cheese and a wine berry sorbet that was to die for.  Opolo’s 2012 Mountain Zinfandel was a surprising pairing that provided a nice twist to dessert that worked really well.  The rich chocolate of the beignet, with the raspberry, vanilla, cayenne pepper and butterscotch of the Mountain Zinfandel – Absolutely Perfect! IMG_5448_1200x900-1024x768Salt Creek Grille and Opolo Vineyards are definitely a match made in heaven.  Not only did they produce an amazing wine pairing dinner, but they provided us with an evening of decadence, great company and something to write home about.

Screen-Shot-2014-03-01-at-9.58.14-AM-360x200

Recipes

Chef Ignacio MunozWant to learn how to make the dishes?  So do I!  So I searched the internet and found a few recipes to hold us over until Chef Ignacio Munoz of Salt Creek Grille invites me in to learn the secrets of his dishes.

Mark your calendars it’s Wine Festival Time!

Who doesn’t love a wine festival?   The 2nd Annual Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Association Wine Festival is coming back this year and promises to be even better than their last one.  Whereas I wasn’t able to attend last year, I’m sure hoping to go this year.  Will I see you there?

2nd Annual Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Association Wine Festival
The Perfect Pairing of California Fine Wine & Good Living

February 17, 2014 (Los Angeles County) – Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Association (SPVVA) will hold its 2nd Annual Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Association Wine Festival on Saturday, April 26, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Reyes Winery in Agua Dulce.  Proceeds from the festival will benefit College of the Canyons, the Institute for the Culinary Arts, scheduled to open fall 2014. Guests will enjoy “ticketless” tastings of wine, beer, spirits, and gourmet fancy food samplings, all paired perfectly with a full day of good living and great experiences.  Guests will receive a complimentary commemorative tasting glass and plate, a specialty gift bag, and free parking. Festival attractions will include:

Wine, Beer & Spirits Tastings from San Antonio Winery, Alonso Family Vineyards, Chavez Vineyards, Golden Star Vineyards, Harris Wine Biz, High Desert Cellars, Oasis Vineyards, Agua Dulce Winery, Pulchella Winery, Reyes Winery, and other SPVVA Members.

Gourmet Bites, from delicious artisan food producers such as Le Chene French Cuisine, Truffles n Toffee, California Bakery, and more to be announced.

Arts & Crafts Exhibit featuring some of LA’s most esteemed artists and craftsmen including Bacelar Woodworks, Patina Soul, Prussmeier Fine Pens, and the paintings of Winemaker Robert Reyes.

Live Music from Quattro, the 2013 Latin Grammy Nominee for Best New Artist; and returning for a second year, the Still Moving Project.

Silent Auction and Raffle items will include Wine & Dine gift certificates, a variety of other wines, gift packages, artwork, and many more exciting items from the event’s sponsors. Sponsors for the event include Union Bank of California,  Galpin Motors, and Rec Solar.

VIP Treatment: With the purchase of a VIP Pass, guests will experience the private Winemaker’s tour and barrel tasting including early entrance at 11 a.m.; V.I.P. lounge reserve wine tasting paired with a gourmet lunch, plus all general admission ticket benefits. (Only a limited amount of VIP passes are available).Exclusive V.I.P. Access Event Passes will be available online at $90.00 until February 28. After February 28, V.I.P. passes will return to their original price of $100.00.

Purchase Tickets: Please visit the SPVVA website.  Prepaid general admission tickets are $65.00 and $75.00 at the door. Special-Benefit-Designated-Driver tickets are also available.

Reyes Winery is located at 10262 Sierra Highway in Agua Dulce, CA 91390.

Media Contact: Georgina Stassi, Stassi & Associates, Media Relations for the Wine & Culinary Industrygeorgina.stassi@gmail.com; 310-613-7445. See Media Pass Request Form on SPVVA website.

About Sierra Pelona Valley AVA and SPVVA Vintners Association:

The Sierra Pelona Valley Vintners Association is an organization that brings together the talents and resources of its members, partners and community in order to promote the production and appreciation of fine wines grown or produced within the Sierra Pelona Valley AVA. Nestled in the Sierra Pelona Mountains of Southern California, just 30 miles north of downtown Los Angeles, the Sierra Pelona Valley’s untouched natural beauty provides the perfect environment for burgeoning vineyards, boutique wineries and outdoor enthusiasts. Visitors can enjoy a day of discovery and relaxation exploring the area’s fine wineries, tasting rooms, events and hiking trails. For information on how to make the most of your time in Sierra Pelona Valley Wine Country, join the Sierra Pelona Valley Vintner’s on Facebook and follow along on Twitter.