It’s time to start thinking about which wines will take center stage at our holidays—be it to serve with dinner or to give as a gift. I highly recommend this delightful wine I came across recently: River Run’s Carignane 2012 ($25).
The 2012 Pinot that winemaker Vann Slatter produced was good, but the 2013 is even better. Not surprisingly, it has become a top seller at the winery. Made entirely from estate fruit and aged for a year on American oak, I think the 750 cases that Slatter made will not be around for very long.
Friends who are wine club members of Martin Ranch invited us to the winery’s fun and festive annual barbecue, where the wine is flowing and the food just keeps on coming. Music and dancing are part and parcel of the action, and a good time is guaranteed.
Next to well-known Café Rustica and tucked just inside the LyonsHead Gallery is the lovely Twisted Roots Winery. It’s a unique place to visit, in that you can order food from Café Rustica to munch on in the winery’s courtyard, or meander around inside Lyons Head and check out all of the interesting artwork. And then there’s the wine tasting, of course. Winemaker Josh Ruiz is producing some excellent wines and he’ll be happy you’re there to try some.
Thomas Kruse Winery, a participant in the new Santa Clara Wine Trail, has been around for a long time—since 1971, to be exact. When our little group arrived to try some wine at the Kruses’ low-key tasting room, Thomas Kruse and his wife Karen were there to greet us. Theirs is a small operation, and they’re proud to offer quality wine at affordable prices. “Because we are small and low-tech, it’s easy to relate to the whole winemaking process,” says Karen—and the Kruses take pride in making wine “just like it has been made for centuries.”