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  1. #46

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    What great pictures!! You guys went through some beautiful places, thanks for sharing them with us!




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  2. #47

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Great TR and pics. I haven't been up there in 20 years - I may need to go next fall.

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Lovely, just lovely!

  4. #49

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Very fun report! Looks like a lot of fun.


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  5. #50

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Great report, Norm. I guess I'll have to head up there someday!

  6. #51

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    04.07.08
    By now the routine of it and the fact that I was buzzed before noon had become old hat. That in itself was nice but really, what was I learning that would justify such debauchery? I came on this trip to really learn despite what one would think. I wanted to learn WHY I liked what I liked. How the vines grew and what effected their flavor. I could certainly tell you what I liked, even why I liked it, but not how those grapes got their flavor much less identify a vine.

    Dusty had his eye set on fixing that. A while back he had purchased a wine blending class at Ravenswood vineyards. We all looked forward to this but had no idea what it was to be all about. Despite this fact we looked to it with great anticipation.

    We got up at about 9ish and got moving. WiddowBessler, Sharon and I walked across the street to get lattes and by 10 am we were on the road. Our Wine blending class was at 11 am so we used the extra hour to stop by Buena Vista Winery which is the oldest winery in California.





    Seasons of the what?


    Foliage along the path


    The Barrel room


    The tasting room




    The ladies pose outside for a shot

    Nice, but hardly remarkable tasting. Enough of that place.

    On to the Wonderful Ravenswood winery.

    We got to Ravenswood butthey were not ready for us just yet so we cooled our heels. It was here that the lovely Skywaygrl joined our group.



    Soon enough a gentleman named Davecame out to introduce himself. He asked if we were on a time frame and we said we were at his disposal. He was happy about that and led us out to the actual vineyards to begin out tour and class.


    Dave says hello


    Temparnillo and weeds




    Calendula


    California Poppy

    Ravenswood is a completely organic winery. Good to know. So then the first question we aksed then is how they handle the weeds. Dave explained that they actually let them grow for a reason. Why? because when they DO cut the weeds down the decomposing vegetation provides nitrogen for the growing vines along with added flavor.


    Dave talks to us about the Zinfandel vines


    A hill of Zin


    A first sprout

    We were then taken to the Zinfandel vines. You can tell the Zin vines right off the bat because they are more compact, not so trelliced. Zin vines look like gnarled hands clawing out of the ground.

    Now on to the blending class. We headed to the barrel room and, after a journey through the barrels we came upon a white table with six settings. We had five glasses in front of us. To the left were glasses of Zinfandel and Careggnan. To the right was Pettite Sirah and a glass of water. directly in front of each of us was an empty glass.



    A grave outside the barrel room marked the death of the last wimpy wine


    Into the barrel room


    Through the barrels


    The ladies working on their wine


    Dusty and Skyway grl blending


    Dusty corks his bottle


    WiddowBessler getting her bottle made


    Me putting a cork in it

    We all were taught what each different wine brought to the pallete and we each made our own little blend. That was amazingly cool.

    This was a beautiful experience.

    We left Ravenswood wiser for the journey but awfully hungry. We stopped, again, by a general store for a few supplies and went to the park for a picinic.




    Skyway grl at the cheese shop


    Lovely.

    We all piled into the car and next went to St. Francis Winery for our wine pairing class.


    St. Francis the patron st. of animals


    Dusty makes peace with St. Francis


    The St. Francis tasting room

    Truly an eye opener, this class taught us how certain wines go with certain foods and why.




    The array of lovely foods and wines


    Cab Franc


    Lavendar at St. Francis

    We left St. Francis and got to our last stop of the day, B.R. Cohn.

    The tasting, I skipped it. I was too enamored with the cool dog that walked around the grounds.



    Cool dog


    me in the backseat


    I snapped this one of Skywaygry

    After the group was done there we packed in the van and went back to the hotel where Skyway grl had left her car.

    We said our goodbyes and then lumbered up to the hotel rooms to relax before heading off to the Sonaoma Town Square for dinner



    The old movie theater


    The entrance to the old time theater complete with a mannequin in the box office

    We ate Dinner at Maya and then strolled around the twon. Tony and Sharon then said their goodbyes and headd home. Fantasy55, WiddowBessler, Dusty and I walked back to the hotel.


    Maya

    What a great day.

    More to come...
    Last edited by Fishbulb; 04-09-2008 at 11:35 PM.
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  7. #52

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Very nice Norm. While I'm not a big wone drinker the process of making wine is so facinating to me. It really looks like a fun time, even without the buzz. I can thank MiceChat for forcing...uh giving me points in the gumball rally for seeing Seasons of the vine show at DCA. I would never have known about it and was very interested in the info they gave out.

    Looking forward to your next installment.

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    I had a great time with all of you. All of your pictures are awesome except the one of me a little over the limit.

  9. #54

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Quote Originally Posted by Skywaygrl View Post
    I had a great time with all of you. All of your pictures are awesome except the one of me a little over the limit.


    You mean this one? I think it's lovely!!

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Quote Originally Posted by stinkerbell View Post


    You mean this one? I think it's lovely!!
    Are you over the limit?

  11. #56

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Oh God I posted that picture again. I hate when that happens.

  12. #57

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    Excellent trip report, Norm! Who wouldn't love great weather, beautiful scenery, tasty wine and friendly company?
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  13. #58

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    I was jealous of Skywaygrl when she told me that she was meeting you guys and this makes it even worse! It looks like you went at a perfect time of year with a perfect group. Amazing photos (as always) !

  14. #59

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    I am loving this report

    It looks like everyone had a fabulous time.

  15. #60

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    Re: Fishbulb and Dusty's adventures in wine country

    The first St Francis statue I fell in love with was in Boston. This one is also really awesome! I love St. Francis.


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