California wine


Take a long dram with me
of California wine, of California wine.
And the wine, it tastes so sweet
as we lay our eyes to wander,
and the sky, it stretches deep.
Will we rest our heads to slumber
beneath the vines of California wine?
Beneath the sun of California One.

the Decemberists

Despite being a Washington State native and rather uninclined to live anywhere else, I really like visiting California. We lived briefly in Santa Barbara after we were married, and this was the first time we’ve been back to visit. So nice to see the live oaks and the dry grassy hills (at least the ones not recently burnt black) and smell the eucalyptus.

live oaks

To boil down our Memorial Day weekend to a few sentences: we drank wine and ate barbecue. Then we went to a wedding and had more wine, and oysters, and more barbecue. Then a lot more wine.  Whee! Many thanks to our friend Deron who drove us all the way out to Foxen Winery. I loved Foxen’s porch tasting room.

Foxen Winery

spit bucket

tasting counter

We also stopped by Curtis and Rusack Wineries. Curtis offers a tasting with chocolate truffle, quite nice with their syrahs.

Rusack Winery

And, of course, the Jonata Winery vineyard, which was where the wedding was held (Jon’s cousin is the winemaker there). We missed out on visiting the winery, but the ranch was gorgeous.

windblown olive trees

vineyard oak


And, just because I can, here’s some goodies from the wedding. The food was all grilled onsite (many guests hovered near the grill in an attempt to stay warm) and there were fantastic wines at each table, each of a different vintage. Our table was 1997, so this was our wine:

1997 vintage

It was very good. Not Californian, but the other dozens of bottles being poured made up for that.


The actual dinner (after a great deal of time spent lurking around the oyster table) kicked off with a salad of greens, dry goat cheese and blood oranges.


Then came a basket of fresh sweet cornbread and herbed butter. We ate quite a lot of this.


The rest was served family style, with platters brought to each table. Grilled halibut with herbs, baby back ribs, grilled artichokes, and mixed vegetables.


We left sometime after the firepit was set alight and most of the guests had climbed down into it to stay warm. I gather they eventually ran out of wine. The groomsmen looked a little pale the next morning.

wedding firepit

I do believe a good time was had by all.

soft grass

And now we just need to decide when we’ll be back to California. Soon, I hope.

marine fog

One thought on “California wine

  1. congratulations! exelent blog, I never tasted california wine, I am from Argentina, also we have exelent wines, as I work in tourism…probably someone can bring to me a wine from there! I have to taste it!

    kind regards,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s