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Bargetto Winery La Vita 2009

wine glassOn the day of Bargetto Winery’s 80th anniversary celebration, Dec. 5, 2013, I headed to their tasting room to give my congratulations—where a celebratory atmosphere was most definitely to be found. There are not many wineries in this country that can boast of 80 years of winemaking, even continuing through the days of Prohibition when wine was permitted to be made only for religious purposes. The Bargetto family has a lot to be proud of—not the least of which is their ability to make fine wines—and their story goes back generations.

John Bargetto is the author, along with Geoffrey Dunn, of a beautiful book on the history of the Bargetto family—starting with the first immigrants from Italy up to the present day. Entitled “Vintage Bargetto,” the book can be bought at the winery or online for $19.95. It is on display in the tasting room, and, the day I was there, a collection of Bargetto wine bottles going back decades was also on display as part of the celebration.

One of the wines I tasted last month was the impressive La Vita 2009 ($60), the latest release of the Bargettos’ series of this extraordinary wine. A blend of 38 percent Refosco, 36 percent Dolcetto and 26 percent Nebbiolo, this deep garnet nectar has a distinct spicy bouquet and rich complex flavors—one of which is of oak from its long barrel aging.

Made from estate grapes grown on Bargetto’s well-known Regan Vineyard in the Santa Cruz Mountains, the summer release of La Vita has now become a much-anticipated annual event. Also at the release party, the artistic label is revealed—a different one every year—and also the nonprofit recipient of part of the proceeds of sales of this wine. The Bargetto family has always made generous donations to nonprofits over the years and continues to support the community in many ways.

One of the few local tasting rooms open daily, Bargetto Winery is a lovely place to visit. I suggest you head there to try some of the many different wines they produce—especially their La Vita. Bargetto Winery, 3535 N. Main St., Soquel, 475-2258. Bargetto.com.


 

Big Sur Foragers Festival’s Grand Celebrity Chef Dinner - An exciting event for all you mycophiles out there is the Big Sur Foragers Festival. One event of this culinary extravaganza takes place at Ventana Inn & Spa in Big Sur at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 18 and tickets are $175. For information visit bigsurforagersfestival.org.


Shadowbrook Restaurant - This is simply a shout-out to Shadowbrook for hosting the Good Times crew in the middle of December for our annual Christmas party. In our own private room, we experienced exceptional food and attentive service—and lots of merriment as the wine and cocktails kept flowing. Visit shadowbrook-capitola.com.

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

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