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Oct 09th
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Soquel Vineyards 2006 Syrah

wine_soquelTwin brothers Peter and Paul Bargetto own and operate Soquel Vineyards with their partner Jon Morgan. Although the Bargetto brothers are related to the Bargettos of Bargetto Winery fame in Soquel, they are a separate entity when it comes to their winery. But winemaking most definitely runs in the family – with a little bit of Pinot Noir and Zinfandel coursing through the Bargetto family’s veins. Peter and Paul’s grandfather actually started Bargetto Winery in 1933, so winemaking is very much a family tradition.

From the many local wines carried by Deer Park Wine & Spirits in Aptos, I decide on a Soquel Vineyards 2006 Partners’ Reserve Syrah – Santa Cruz Mountains, Lester Family Vineyard. This luscious wine, which sells for about $20, is a wonderful choice for the holidays. Not only will it go well with your 10-pound turkey, but it will also make an ideal gift. Personally, I love gifts of food and wine. What could be better than a splendid bottle of wine – to be opened up and enjoyed with friends and family. My son-in-law, who lives in Seattle, loves wine, so it’s always a done deal to get him a half dozen bottles of our good local stuff for when we go there at Christmas. By the time we’ve all had Christmas dinner, day-after leftovers, played a few card games over the next couple of days – we’ve gone through the whole six bottles, and then some.

Opening up the 2006 Syrah is like experiencing a little bit of wine heaven. Explosive smoky aromas immediately invade the olfactory senses—complete with wild strawberries and tobacco. Dense flavors of cherry, black pepper and toast are all right there as well in this richly textured wine. It’s hard to believe this most excellent nectar can be bought for $20. I believe it usually sells for around $30.

It’s not surprising, then, that this particular Syrah won a gold medal at the 2009 Santa Cruz Mountains Commercial Wine Competition—with a score of 90 points. All together, Soquel Vineyards won 15 medals in that particular competition—including another gold for their 2007 Zinfandel, made from 107-year-old vines from Lodi (Schmierer Vineyard).

A visit to Soquel Vineyards’ tasting room is a very pleasurable experience on a weekend. They produce quite a variety of wines – including Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pyramid (Meritage), Sangiovese and a Trinity blend—so there’s plenty to choose from when you go for a tasting. But the Syrah is most definitely one of my favorites. It’s an excellent wine to go with a lamb shank, roast duck, smoked meat—or even a festive turkey. I think I’ll take a bottle to my son-in-law in Seattle. He’ll be cooking my Christmas dinner.

Soquel Vineyards, 8063 Glen Haven Road, (P.O. Box 1555), Soquel, 462-9045.
Tasting room open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

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Mercury completes its retrograde Friday, poised stationary direct Friday evening at zero degrees Libra. Mercury begins its journey through Libra once again, completing its retrograde shadow Oct. 12. Things should be a bit less complicated by then. Daily life works better, plans move forward, large purchases can be made, and communication eases. Everything on hold during the retrograde is slowly released. Since we eliminated all thoughts and ideas no longer needed (the purpose of Mercury’s retrograde) during the retrograde, we can now gather new information—until the next retrograde occurs on Jan. 5, 2016 (1.3 degrees Aquarius), retrograding back to 15 degrees Capricorn on Jan. 25. It’s good to know beforehand when Mercury will retrograde next—Jan. 5, the day before Epiphany. On Monday is Columbus Day, when the sailor from Genoa arrived in the new lands (Americas), Oct. 12, 1492. This discovery by Columbus was the first encounter of Europeans with Native Americans. Other names for this day are “Discovery Day, Day of the Americas, Cultural Diversity Day, Indigenous People’s Day, and Dia de la Raza.” Italian communities especially celebrate this day. Oct. 12 is also Thanksgiving Day in Canada. Monday is also the (19 degrees) Libra new moon festival. Libra’s keynote while building the personality is, “Let choice be made.” Libra is the sign of making life choices. Often under great tension of opposing forces seeking harmony and balance. There is a battle between our lower (personality) and higher selves (soul). We are tested and called to cultivate right judgment and love. When we align with the will-to-good, right choice, then right judgment and love/wisdom come forth. Our tasks in Libra. 


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