Thirsty Thursday Twitter Tastings 6/27 with #AlsaceRocks & #WFMwine

Today, Thursday June 27from 4-6pm  is one heckuva  Thirsty Thursday! We’ve got 8 bottles of wine to open, taste and tweet about!
Annie AnyDay, Que Syrah Sue, and I plus a few more friends will be popping corks and posting notes Continue reading

Discover Why Riesling From #AlsaceRocks

What comes to mind when you think about  Riesling? Sweet? Or too sweet?

Guess agaWebin!

What about Alsace?

If you’re a typical American, I’d bet you probably don’t know that…

Alsace is a region in the Northeastern corner of France, right next to Germany and above Switzerland with 38,300 acres of vines, with over 13%  organic or biodynamic, making the region one of the greenest in France. In 2011, Alsace produced 12.5 million cases of wine.

Alsace has 13 different and very distinct types of soil from volcanic to limestone to clay, the most diverse terroir in France. 

Alsace is in the rain shadow of the Vosges Mountains making it the second driest region in France with around 20 inches of rain per year. Alsace also experiences a lot of sunshine with 1,800 hours annually. Warm days and cool nights allow for slow ripening, which produces complex, aromatic and balanced wines.

Alsace produces mostly white wines: still, sparkling, and sweet, but also Pinot Noir.

Crémant d’Alsace makes up 24% of the production and is produced in the tradition method from Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir (all Crémant d’Alsace Rosés are 100% Pinot Noir) or Chardonnay (only for Crémant production).Yum! Read about the Lucien Albrecht Cremant d’Alsace we opened for Mother’s Day!

So what should you pair with that Riesling from Alsace now that you know that it’s not necessarily sweet? Continue reading

Which Wine Goes With Which Cheese?

576237_10151378942482017_811538110_nWhich cheese should you pair with which wine? Which wine goes with which cheese?

This wine/cheese pie chart from Wine Fetch offers a few ways to answer that question.

I’m preparing for a Twitter tasting of four Rieslings from Alsace on Thursday  from 4-5pm (more on that in tomorrow’s post!) so Annie AnyDay and I were discussing today what we should fix to pair with them.

Since Paradise Pantry is now open Continue reading

Getting Around: Fun Wine Map of California

MetroMapCADon’t you just love this wine map of California by DeLongWine.Com? This is one in a series of Wine Maps with these regions available currently:

They’re $25 unframed or $100 framed; I think they should turn them into boxed note cards or postcards! In fact, I’m going to suggest to them to do postcards of California for the Wine Bloggers Conference in 2014 in Santa Barbara for the gift bags.

They also offer a number of  free resources including Wine Tasting Note Forms.

This map is part of a series of fun posts using infographics, tables, charts, and maps. Here’s an infographic about the evolution of PR. Coming up: a pie chart about how to pair wine and cheese, and an inforgraphic about reisling. And then I hope to have my series of posts about Tinhorn Creek in BC ready to post!

Check out an infographic about ME here!

The Evolution of Public Relations: The Infographic


I don’t know about you, but I love Infographics and various graphic representations of data.

In fact, I am so enamoured of them that I’ve signed up for Vizify which has made an infographic about ME which you can see here.

I’ve come across a few great ones recently so I’m going to post a series of them.

Today is “The Evolution of Public Relations” which I found here.  I appreciate how this infographic emphasizes permission marketing and social media strategies including blogging.

Tomorrow is a fun variation of a wine map of California.

Then I’ve been holding onto a handy pie chart that pairs wines with cheeses so that’s next.

Finally, I’ll post an infographic about Riesling in advance of the Alsatian Riesling twitter tasting that I’m participating in on Thursday.

And then I hope I will have my series of posts about Tinhorn Creek in British Columbia ready for publication…

Karma & London Calling

ahoyChelanAs I’m moving into my 10th year of marriage, my son is heading into 5th grade, I’m in my 15 year of teaching writing at the community college level, I’m 12 years into a 30 year mortgage, and I’m almost done with my second year of my PhD (about to earn a second Masters, this one in Depth Psychology), I sometimes see  opportunities and say, hmmn, I wonder, I wish. What if.

Shoulda coulda woulda. Continue reading

Today’s #LambruscoDay: Time for Summer’s Fizzy Fun Red Wine!

Will Lambrusco, that delightful bubbly red wine from Italy, be the next Prosecco, that delightful white bubbly wine from Italy that took the US by storm nearly 10 years ago?

Kitten Likes LambruscoWe’ll see!

In the meantime, the perfect time to check out Lambrusco is today Friday June 21, 2013–the first day of summer and Lambrusco Day!

I was sent a sample of the IL Mionetto Lambrusco so Annie and I opened it up yesterday in anticipation of Lambrusco Day. Annie said,

“This is a lot of fun for 10 Bucks!”

And I agree! Continue reading

6th Annual Ventura County Wine Trail Celebration Sells Out!

998599_683640348328552_70706217_nIf you were waiting until the last minute to purchase a ticket to the The 6th Annual Ventura County Wine Trail Celebration today, June 20 at 5:30-8:30pm, you waited too long because tickets are sold out!



1. This year, the festival will be held at a brand new venue– The Collection Riverpark’s outdoor event center located by the brand new REI and Whole Foods across from the old Esplanade near the intersection of the 101 and Highway 1 in Oxnard.

2. 17 of Ventura County’s local boutique wineries pouring tastes of their new releases.

3. Wines made from every major wine grape growing region in California from Napa Valley to Malibu.

4. Over 30  different varietals and blends to sample.

5. Opportunity to meet and talk with area wine makers.

6. The very best in local cuisine with restaurants prepared their signature dishes onsite.

7. Great musical entertainment by The Shoemakers Brothers.

Event tickets WERE available for $40 at, and  WERE going to be for $50 at the door. A portion of the evening’s proceeds will be donated to the Ventura County FOOD SHARE, a food bank that houses and distributes millions of pounds of food each year to the hungry of Ventura County.

So next year, get your tickets in advance!

The 6th Annual Ventura County Wine Trail Celebration
Returns to Celebrate the Bounty of the County!

 The Ventura County Wine Trail brings the 6th annual Wine Trail Celebration to Ventura County, June 20th, 2013. This year, the festival will be held at The Collection Riverpark’s outdoor event center – West Ventura County’s newest shopping, dining and entertainment destination.

This year, the festival will feature more than 17 of Ventura County’s local boutique wineries; each sharing their latest releases. For wine lovers, this event is truly unique – as local wine makers bring in grapes from every major growing region across California (from Napa Valley to Malibu). This allows Ventura County Wine Trail tasters to experience the very best of California wine county – all without the road trip. This event will boast more than 30 different varietals and blends, and provide an opportunity to meet the wine makers behind them.

In addition to the lineup of wines, guests will taste the very best in local cuisine – fresh from the area’s hottest restaurants. Chefs prepare their signature dishes onsite for attendees to enjoy over the three hour festival. In previous years, attendees have been treated to inspired culinary creations – such as Black & Blue Filet, Poached Salmon with dill cream sauce and Lamb Burgers.

This year’s special musical guests are local favorites, The Shoemakers Brothers. Musicians and fans alike declare this band to be one of the best live acts they have ever heard or seen. The Brothers astound audiences by switching instruments, as they perform; they are all classically trained on string instruments, they all sing lead vocals and harmonies, and they all play guitar, piano, drums and bass.

Between the delicious wines, mouthwatering fare and unforgettable music – the 6th annual Ventura County Wine Trail Celebration is festival not to miss!The festival begins at 5:30pm – 8:30pm, June 20th, 2013. Event tickets are available for $40 and for sale online at, and for $50 at the door. A portion of the evening’s proceeds will be donated to the Ventura County FOOD SHARE, a food bank that houses and distributes millions of pounds of food each year to the hungry of Ventura County.

- See more at:

Happy 100th Birthday, Robert Mondavi!

1004433_4961974648979_884967214_nToday Tuesday June 18, 2013, at 5pm Pacific Standard Time, join me and other wine lovers  around the world in a toast of appreciation for the leadership in the wine industry of Robert Mondavi. 

Known as the father of California wine,  Mondavi influenced just about every wine you might find on your grocery store or cellar shelf so choose a Mondavi brand wine or not for your toast.

As the Mondavi brands Woodbridge and the Robert Mondavi name are now owned by Constellation, if you want a wine made by a Mondavi, try Divining Rod by Marc Mondavi, who is a certified water witch (read a review here).

Click on the second image for more

Note: A bottle of wine was shipped to me to participate in the toast and for review consideration; however, due to a shipping misfortune, I will not be able to participate using the sample wine until after 5pm. I will, however, be at the Ojai Vineyards tasting room toasting Mondavi with the wine at hand!

PS Coming up on Wine Predator: Friday is Lambrusco Day! And I have plenty more to say about my trip to Canada–specifically, a series of three posts about Tinhorn Creek in Oliver, BC!

Speed Tasting #WBC13 Part 2: Red #Wine & 5 Tips for Twitter Tastings

On Friday, during the Wine Bloggers Conference in Penticton, British Columbia, we celebrated the white wines of the region during our speed tasting of 10 white, sparkling, rose, and ice wines.

On Saturday, we moved onto the red wines. Continue reading

Speed Tasting at WBC13 Part 1: White Wines

Speed tasting wine at a Wine Bloggers’ Conference is not for the faint hearted. Continue reading

Painted Rock & Poplar Grove Merlots from the Okanagan, British Columbia

kittenOKmerlotflowers1So being the Wine Predator that I am, I acquired numerous bottles of open and closed wine during and after the Wine Bloggers Conference that I either tasted before I left (nothing like a 3am taste and dump session to break your heart!) or I snaked across the border.

Somehow, I was blessed to bring home three bottles of Okanagan merlot (pictured). One bottle of these bottles that made it home open was Continue reading