SBC Wine with Gavin Chanin

1/27/2015

Gavin Chanin & Lutum Wines | Wander & Wine

Writing my column in the Santa Barbara Sentinel for the past 7 months has been such a great excuse to get out and meet some very talented people in the wine industry. It’s crazy to me how many people stumbled into the wine industry at a young age and have excelled, quickly making a name for themselves as reputable winemakers (although with all that hard work, it probably doesn’t seem like overnight success to them!).

12 Questions with Tom Glase

1/25/2015

12 Questions with Balboa Winery's Tom Glase | Wander & Wine

If you haven’t yet been to Walla Walla, you’re definitely missing out! The area is seriously booming, with a growing culinary scene, awesome wineries and very nice people. It’s almost been a year since I was last in Walla Walla, when my friend Sarah and I made a quick trip before I moved. During our whirlwind tour, we met the owner / winemaker of Balboa Winery, Tom Glase. Tom and his wife, Amy, are the brains behind Balboa, where they not only make great wine but ensure each and every visitor feels welcome (doesn’t hurt that their adorable dogs are the first to greet you at the door).

Cultivar Wine & Caspar Estate

1/20/2015

Cultivar Wine | Wander & Wine

I always love introducing friends and family to wines from lesser known wineries, especially in a place like Napa Valley where the big names usually dominate. Sure, there are plenty of well known names worth seeking out, but isn’t it rewarding to find a producer that is smaller and family-run sometimes?

Postcards of Big Sur, CA

1/11/2015

Nepenthe - Big Sur | Wander & Wine

Jagged cliffs. Stunning scenery. Big Sur is right up there with the most photographed places in the US for sure, and if you haven’t driven on Highway 1 between San Simeon and Carmel before, it should be on your bucket list. Heading north, the drive starts out pretty flat and then you suddenly find yourself driving along steep, cliff-hugging winding roads. Although Nick and I did the drive from Santa Barbara to Half Moon Bay a few years ago, Big Sur is definitely the type of place to visit more than once, so we were excited to get back and explore. This time, we met up with my best friend and her boyfriend in Big Sur for a couple nights of camping to ring in the new year… 30 degree weather and all. Believe it or not, we weren’t the only ones who had this brilliant idea — there were lots of campers!

2014: A Recap

1/05/2015

Recap 2014: Most popular | Wander & Wine

Happy New Year! Well, another year has come and gone… but what a year it was! 2014 was complete with a move back to Santa Barbara, lots of great wine and food, getting my own wine column in a local publication and, the big one, getting engaged (at a winery of all places)! Success! 2015 has some big shoes to fill, but I have no doubts it will be even better. Before letting go of 2014, I’m taking a look back at all the neat experiences I’ve been able to share with my readers (that’s part of the fun of having a blog – to relive all the great moments!). So, to close out 2014, here are a few of my most popular blog posts that are worth checking out if you missed them.

12 Questions with Winemaker Joey Tensley

12/28/2014

With Fergie and her Ferguson Crest wine | Wander & Wine

There are plenty of celebs and well-known people getting involved with wine these days, from Drew Barrymore to Drew Bledsoe and even Kate Hudson. For this month’s ‘12 Questions With,‘ I’m introducing you to the winemaker behind a very famous singer’s family wine label, Ferguson Crest! I got to meet ‘Fergie Ferg’ when I was at the LA Food & Wine festival this summer while she was there representing her wines, but I only got a small taste of the Viognier. The Ferguson Crest Fergalicious red blend is definitely on my list of wines to taste, but in the meantime, I’m excited to introduce you to the label’s winemaker, Joey Tensley.

Merry Christmas!

12/24/2014

Christmas table | Wander & Wine

A very Merry Christmas from my table to yours! Cheers to a beautiful day full of great laughs with family and friends, delicious food and, of course, excellent wine.

Holiday Wine & Movie Pairing: Ridgeview Grosvenor & Love Actually

12/21/2014

Ridgeview Grosvenor Blanc de Blanc | Wander & Wine

I have to admit that I am one of those people who adores Christmas. After Thanksgiving, I can’t wait to put up the tree, decorate the house, drink egg nog and watch all my favorite Christmas movies. There are a couple movies on the yearly rotation, like The Holiday, Elf and Home Alone, but one of my favorites is Love Actually, a sorta rom-com taking place around Christmastime. Although some of the plot lines aren’t actually that heart warming and there are some cheesy moments, I still love it. Who’s with me!? So, if you haven’t yet watched this movie this year, now’s the time to put it on and bring out the bubbly! I’m pairing this movie, set in England, with a sparkling wine from the UK’s Ridgeview Winery, and I think you’re going to like it.

Holiday Gift Guide for Wine & Food Lovers

12/16/2014

2014 Holiday Gift Guide for Wine & Food Lovers | Wander & Wine

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, indeed! As much as I love the holidays, this time of year can be kind of stressful with all that we try to pack in between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Not going to lie, I’m a little in denial that Christmas is just over a week away – where did the time go?! Admittedly, I’m way behind on my Xmas gift shopping this year… oy! If you’re in the same boat and are looking for some last minute ideas other than the standard bottle of wine, check out some of my favorite gift ideas for every wine and food lover on your list!

Luli Chardonnay & Cheese… and Shatner?

12/08/2014

Luli Chardonnay & St. Andre pairing | Wander & Wine

I’m not normally a Chardonnay fan, and I think because I don’t care for it I am extra critical of it. Lately, though, I have found myself being pleasantly surprised by a few Chardonnays… especially when there’s good cheese to pair with it! One I enjoyed recently was the 2013 Luli Chardonnay ($20) from the Santa Lucia Highlands.

Luli Wines is the collaboration of Master Somm, Sara Floyd, and the Pisoni Family who are grape growers and winemakers in the Sta. Lucia Highlands. For Luli wines, they purchase grapes from multiple vineyards in cooler coastal regions, such as Monterey County and Sta. Lucia Highlands, to make Chardonnay, Rosé, Pinot Noir and Syrah.

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