Napa Valley is noted for its abundance of wineries, wine tastings, warm/hot climate (even in winter), lavish restaurants, and compact access to literally dozens of wineries—currently numbered at over 700. But, with notoriety also comes popularity. Let’s face it—in the summer and fall, Napa is a zoo of tourists and locals. The two main thoroughfares, St. Helena Highway (Route 29) and the Silverado Highway, are usually jammed with vehicles, as are the tasting rooms.
Every new Internet development comes with a hyperventilating promise to change the way a winery does business by revolutionizing how it interfaces with its customers by creating a new type of community around the brand. Yet, these innovations rarely become the ubiquitous life changers they are touted to be.
In June 2005 I joined a mixed group—Croatian winemakers, restaurateurs, professors, and journalists—to sail the Adriatic from the Istrian peninsula of Croatia to the Greek locality of Monemvasia, off the eastern coast of the Peloponnese. We boarded two 65-foot yachts that set sail on a Malvasia Mediterranea MMV expedition whose aim was to discover the true roots of the ancient malvasia grape variety.
It took me a few days to get everything out of our Brooklyn apartment and into my parents’ house in New Jersey. I packed my clothes and shoes, and the wine I had brought back from France three months earlier. The break-up, while rooted in the simple fact that my now ex-fiancé and I did not like each other, still seemed sudden.
Have you ever considered traversing the globe in search of the world’s best wine cellars? So have Jurgen Lijcops and Astrid Fobelets, authors of a new book entitled The Most Beautiful Wine Cellars in the World.
Visitors to St. Louis often want to go see the Arch, or take in a Cardinals game. But for our guests who are up for more than just the usual tourist sites, one of the places I take them, particularly if they're foodies or lovers of urban neighborhoods, is The Hill.
That bottle of Taittinger, wasn’t destined to last long so extracting a corkscrew from the new leather man-bag a rather pleasant Pinot Noir from Jadot (Les Climats, 2004 vintage) was cracked open to accompany the various tit-bits extracted from Waitrose.