Pesto Pasta Wine Pairing


Italian Wine & Pesto pairing | Wander & Wine

When I studied abroad in Rome, I fell in love with all things Italian – from the wine and the food to the language and the beauty. Although I learned to appreciate Italian delicacies, I certainly didn’t pick up any special cooking skills while there like making homemade pasta or anything. I was more preoccupied with traveling and drinking birras with my friends (remember, I was in college).

If you like this red, you might like…


Tips for choosing red wines | Wander & Wine

Like I mentioned recently in my post about new white wines, a lot of people I know are ready to branch out and try different wines, but maybe have no idea where to start. I totally get it… back in college, I was ready to graduate from the Franzia but didn’t know where to head from there. Anywhere would be a good start, you say? Haha, yeah sort of (although no disrespect to boxed wine drinkers!).

Fourth of July Food & Wine


Fourth-of-July-Wine-and-Food | Wander & Wine

Hope everyone had a wonderful Fourth of July weekend! It was certainly a fun celebration for us here in Southern California, filled with sunshine, good wine and drinks, great food, bocce ball and cards (reigning “31″ champ, right here!).

Wanting to keep things a bit more low key this year, Nick and I hosted a couple of friends for a chill 4th of July BBQ before joining the crowds to watch the fireworks. Those that know me know that I’m a big fan of entertaining… not only because I love getting people together, but also because I love to try out new recipes any excuse I get. So, instead of flocking to my stack of yet-to-be-made recipes that I’ve been tearing out of magazines for years, I decided to hit up Pinterest for a few new recipes. Who better to be my guinea pigs than my boyfriend and best friend? Don’t worry, they still love me!

If you like this white wine, you might like…


 Tips for Choosing New Wines | Wander & Wine

A lot of people ask me if there are any fun new wines out there to try… of course, “fun” and “new” is all relative! Washington Cabernet could be ‘new’ to you or maybe Alsatian Riesling is ‘new’ to you. Maybe some of you have never even heard of Alsatian Riesling (and that’s okay!). Regardless, I commend all the adventurous and non-adventurous wine drinkers out there for taking an interest in the world of wine.

Bocce and Wine at Zinke Wine Co.


Zinke Wine Co, Los Olivos tasting room | Wander & Wine

If you remember a couple of weekends ago, Nick and I ventured out of town and spent the day doing some wine tasting in and around Los Olivos. Back when my dad was growing up in the area, Los Olivos was a dusty little western town consisting of Carl Side’s Hardware Store, a 76 gas station on the corner, a post office, Los Olivos meat market, the historic Mattei’s Tavern and a colorful bar known as The Bucket of Blood (sounds like a classy establishment, doesn’t it?). Obviously, it’s changed quite a bit over the years… Los Olivos is now home to over 40 wine tasting rooms. FORTY. Dusty little town no more… it’s more like a wine enthusiasts’ Disneyland!

Enchiladas: The Wine Pairing Challenge


Torrontes & Petite Sirah food pairing | Wander & Wine

Food and wine pairings can be quite tricky, but a fun challenge nonetheless. If you remember, in March I participated in an online food and wine pairing challenge presented by fellow blogger, The Wandering Gourmand. My shrimp and grits wine pairing answer (Albariño or Gewurz) lost by only one vote. So close! To put my pairing skills to work again, I decided to join this month’s challenge… finding a wine (or beer) that would pair best with the crowd-pleasing Mexican staple, and one of my favorite things to make, enchiladas (with red sauce). Instead of going for what I thought the obvious answer would be (beer, no disrespect), I decided to dig a little deeper and come up with two maybe lesser obvious pairings. I chose a white wine, Torrontes, and a red, Petite Sirah. A big, bold red… with Mexican food? Yes, I went there!

Biodynamic Rhones at Beckmen Vineyards, Los Olivos


Beckmen Vineyards, Los Olivos | Wander & Wine

Lazy Sundays no more! Since moving back to Santa Barbara, Sundays have become more of a day of fun and exploration than R&R. It’s typically Nick’s one day off (such is the life of a business owner), so we usually find ourselves spending the day out and about. This past Sunday was no exception when we decided to hop in the car with our lab, Joey, for some wine tasting in Los Olivos. Our first destination? Beckmen Vineyards, based on the suggestion of a local wine friend.

Cultivate Wines, Cultivating Life


Cultivate Wines | Wander & Wine

Now that it’s summer, I find myself reaching for wines that are easy on the budget and the palate… the types you can throw into the picnic basket (screw cap) or take to a casual bbq (food-friendly) without spending a fortune. It’s a good thing, then, that I was recently introduced to Terroir Selections‘ newest brand of wines, Cultivate Wines.

You may have heard of Terroir Selections and their impressive line-up of wine brands, like Leviathan, Wind Gap, Qupé, Mayacamas, Fable Mountain and Sandhi. If you remember from my post on the Pebble Beach Food & Wine Festival, I got the opportunity to taste through a vertical of the famed Napa Valley Mayacamas Cabernet (vintages 1989, 1999 and 2008, oh my).

A little slice of Italy at The Pasta Shoppe in Santa Barbara


The Pasta Shoppe, Santa Barbara Public Market | Wander & Wine

Although I lived in Italy for a semester, I never learned the art of pasta-making. I did eat a lot of pasta (and gelato) while there, but back then I was too preoccupied with looking at art (yes, I was an Art History major) and traveling around Europe with my friends. I do, however, love all things Italian, especially the food. After a few visits to the Santa Barbara Public Market and seeing all the delectable-looking pasta being offered at The Pasta Shoppe, I was eager to taste for myself. A surprise rainy night in SB was the perfect excuse to stop in!

Santa Barbara Public Market is here!


Santa Barbara Public Market | Wander & Wine

Well, it’s finally here. The Santa Barbara Public Market is officially open. I’ve spent the last few months eagerly awaiting its opening not only because I live only a few short blocks away, but because I was hoping that it’d be similar to the Ferry Building that I frequented all too often while living in San Francisco. Although it’s much smaller than the Ferry Building, the SB Public Market is a neighborhood gem providing access to local artisanal and sustainable food.

Santa Barbara Public Market Inside | Wander & Wine

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