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Pleasant Valley Vineyards

wine glassPinot Noir Dylan David Reserve 2009

By Josie Cowden When I visited Lester Family Vineyards not that long ago for a wine event featuring Pleasant Valley Vineyards wines from grapes grown on the Lester property, I was absolutely bowled over with the 2009 Dylan David Pinot, Lester Family Vineyards Willa Louise Block. Handcrafted from nurtured vines of French Dijon clone 667, this is a Pinot to be reckoned with.

Winemaker Craig Handley reveals his magic touch with the superb quality of his wines. Part of that magic is because he always uses the finest grapes, and the supreme fruit grown in Dan Lester’s vineyards most certainly falls into that category.

The sensuous aromas of this ’09 Pinot ($60) are heavy with red fruit—strawberries and cherries in particular—and characteristic earthiness. More strawberries and cherries appear in the flavor, with layers of caramel, smoke, spice and vanilla. Aged in Seguin Moreau Grand Cru French oak barrels, this unfiltered and unfined wine is simply supberb.

Pleasant Valley Vineyards will be doing an Irish Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. on March 15 to celebrate the release of their 2011 Sean Boyle Syrah. Check their website for more information.  Pleasant Valley Vineyards, 600 Pleasant Valley Road, Aptos, 288-0074. Pvvines.com. The tasting room is open from noon to 4 p.m. most Saturdays from April to September, but call ahead to check. The tasting fee is from$ 10-$15.


 

Marilyn Monroe Spa Opens in Hyatt Monterey
I love to treat myself to a spa session now and again—a relaxing massage can do wonders to ease the stresses of day-to-day life. When I heard about the new Marilyn Monroe Spa in the Hyatt Monterey Hotel, I had to give it a whirl, and it’s a wonderful experience. Everything has been re-done inside the spa and all the amenities are top-notch. Fabulous pictures of Marilyn Monroe adorn the walls, and there’s even a line of Marilyn Monroe Spas skincare, hair care, makeup, lips and nail products. I ended my afternoon at the spa by being invited to share champagne, brought in from the hotel’s bar, with a group of women from the nearby Laguna Seca Race Track. Around 10 of them were enjoying time off work with an afternoon at the spa. Life can be so good. Marilyn Monroe Spa in the Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel, 1 Old Golf Course Road, Monterey, 831-657-6734. Monterey.hyatt.com.

Winemaker Wednesdays at Shadowbrook
Shadowbrook Restaurant continues with its Winemaker Wednesdays until the end of May. From 5-8 p.m. a different winemaker each week pours flights of their featured wine in the bar for you to sample. Cost is around $13 and includes complimentary hors d’oeuvres. March 12 features Odonata Wines, March 19 is Villa Del Monte, and March 26 is Bonny Doon Vineyard. Visit shadowbrook-capitola.com for more information.

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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.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of February 12

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