Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wine Tasting along the Silverado Trail

My new pretty hairdo and I ran dad’s car home and picked up mom and dad for a day of wine tasting along the Silverado Trail. The sun came out for us just in time for a perfect lunch as ZinsCafe in Napa and stayed strong through our tasting. We started out at Reynolds Family Winery, which had a cozy feeling to it and perfect tasting room (not to shiny, not to cold, not to closed in…just right). I enjoyed all our tastings but really loved their Los Careros Pinot Noir, which felt like silk on my tongue (I’m not the world’s most sophisticated taster). Our tasting host, Steve, turned out to be the best we had all day and snapped a shot of us on their patio.

Next we dropped by Darioush Winery, on a recommendation from a friend and tasted just one wine, their signature Shiraz which was quite possibly the best wine we tasted all day. It was perfect in every way and left us reeling for more. Unfortunately the tasting room was way to cold and sterile for us to stick around for a full tasting or bottle purchase (not to mention the overly snotty tasting room employees), but we did have some fun taking photos in their Middle Eastern themed building.

Next we marched to Clos du Val Winery, which felt a bit more like home, with heavy ivy climbing up the brick building that housed their tasting room. Their Stags Leap Cabs were big and bright and offered us the best taste of Cabs all day. The tasting room staff was beyond helpful and even printed us out a map to my friend’s house for later that day.

They sent us next door to Chimney Rock Winery, which left an impression on us from the instant we began down its driveway. The white stucco building stood out between the surrounding vineyard and green hillside. We saddled up to the U-shaped tasting bar for the most unique tasting I’ve ever had. I enjoyed all their wines but feel in love with their Rose of Cab Franc with somehow managed to maintain its blueberry and cherry smells while leaving my tongue clean and light after each sip. Of course, we took some photos there too.

Silverado Vineyards, set high up on a hill overlooking the valley, had the best views of the day. Their Sangiovese was the bottle of choice for gifting to my friend Emily, later that night. We snapped some photos off their patio and took to the road to meet Emily’s newest edition to her family.

Emily, and her three belle’s welcomed us into their home just off the Silverado Trail for some evening snacks and vino. Her lovely mate, Asade, and his friend chatted up my parents while Emily showed me around the house, played with the new puppy, feed the kids and quite seriously juggled her whole house in one effortless motion. She amazes me and has always added a new element to my life that I never knew I was missing.

I rushed home to meet one of my permanent friends (I use this term instead of “forever friend” due to the cheesy nature of that phrase), who entered my life in high school and has the amazing ability to make me feel like nothing has changed no matter how rarely we see each other. My general rule of thumb: When you feel like no time has passed between you and a friend, despite the fact that years have gone by, you know you’ve found an amazing friend and someone you need to hold onto.

So, my permanent friend Luke and I had a drink at the Sleeping Lady bar and venue in downtown Fairfax and discussed our next steps and biggest ambitions. Nothing finer that discussing a positive future!

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