Santa Cruz Good Times

Thursday
Apr 17th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Sarah’s Vineyard & Wine Events

altNuits d’Enfer Merlot 2007 “Nights of Hell”

 I must admit that part of the attraction of trying this wine is the name of it. When a wine is called “Nights of Hell,” then it’s either going to set you on fire and give you a torturous night’s sleep, or it’s going to fill you with devilish passion and test your terpsichorean abilities to the max.

I am happy to report that neither was the case after taking a sip. I wanted to dance around only because the wine was so delightful.

The “Nights of Hell” Merlot – $21, Santa Clara Valley – is blended with Charbono and Cabernet Sauvignon. It has a lovely rich dense color and is loaded with dark plum, cranberry and rhubarb – the latter giving it a slightly tart and crisp edge, but not at all detracting from the satisfying mouthfeel.

Charbono is a grape variety from the Savoie region of France. It’s also grown extensively in Argentina – where it’s known as Bonarda – and now, thanks to California’s varying climates, it’s grown in this state, too. Wine made from Charbono tends to be bold and powerful with a full-bodied palate. There’s nothing wimpy about Charbono.

My husband and I were invited to a dinner party by some friends who live locally, and all the guests were requested to take “a nice bottle of wine.” Since our hosts are very familiar with most of the wineries in the Santa Cruz area, I decided to take something from a winery in Gilroy, but which belongs to the Santa Cruz Mountains Winegrowers Association. Sarah’s is on Hecker Pass, so it’s just a stone’s throw from Santa Cruz – and certainly well worth a visit.

Duck was served as a main course, and, I’m happy to say, all the guests enjoyed a pairing of the Merlot and gave it the thumbs up. The “Nights of Hell” turned into an evening of heaven.

Sarah’s Vineyard, 4005 Hecker Pass Highway, Gilroy. (408)847-1947. Sarahsvineyard.com. Tasting room open daily from noon to 5 p.m.


Wine Events: Big Basin Vineyards’ Spring Harvest Celebration

I’m giving you a heads up to get Big Basin’s spring release celebration on your calendar. This wine, food and music event is extremely popular, so it is requested that tickets be purchased in advance.  Big Basin Vineyards in spring is just beautiful – and then there are all those awesome wines to taste as well! The event is on April 21 & 22 from noon to 5 p.m. Tickets are $25 (which includes a 22-ounce crystal Big Basin wine glass) and can be purchased online or at Big Basin’s tasting room in Saratoga.

Info: Big Basin Vineyards, 830 Memory Lane, Boulder Creek, 621-8028; or the tasting room in Saratoga at 14598 Big Basin Way, (408) 564-7346. Bigbasinvineyards.com.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Growing Hope

Campos Seguros combats sexual assault in the Watsonville farmworker community Farm work was a way of life for Rocio Camargo, who grew up in Watsonville as the daughter of Mexican immigrants. Her parents met while working the fields 30 years ago, and her father went on to run Fuentes Berry Farms.

 

Cardinal Grand Cross in the Sky

Following Holy Week (passion, death and burial of the Pisces World Teacher) and Easter Sunday (Resurrection Festival), from April 19 to the 23, the long-awaited and discussed Cardinal Cross of Change appears in the sky, composed of Cardinal signs Aries, Libra, Cancer, and Capricorn, with planets (13-14 degrees) Uranus (in Aries), Jupiter (in Cancer), Mars (in Libra) and Pluto (in Capricorn), an actual geometrical square or cross configuration. Cardinal signs mark the seasons of change, initiating new realities.

 

Sugar: The New Tobacco?

Proposed bill would require warning labels on sugary drinks Will soda and other saccharine libations soon come with a health warning? They will if it’s up to our state senator, Bill Monning (D-Carmel). On Feb. 27, Monning proposed first-of-its-kind legislation that would require a consumer warning label be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages sold in California. SB 1000, also known as the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Safety Warning Act, was proposed to provide vital information to consumers about the harmful effects of consuming sugary drinks, such as sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened teas.

 

Animal Magnetism

Bear, mouse dare to be friends in charming ‘Ernest and Celestine’ It’s not exactly Romeo and Juliet. It’s not even a romance, although it is a love story about two individuals separated by prejudice who find the courage to form an unshakable bond despite the rules and traditions that keep them apart.
Sign up for Tomorrow's Good Times Today
Upcoming arts & events

Latest Comments

 

Foodie File: Red Apple Cafe

Breakfast takes center stage at Gracia Krakauer's Red Apple Cafe Before they moved to Aptos, Gracia and her husband Dan Krakauer would visit friends in Santa Cruz County and eat at the Red Apple Café all the time. Then they moved up here from Santa Monica five years ago, and bought the Aptos location (there’s a separate one in Watsonville) from the family who owned it for two decades.

 

How would you feel about a tech industry boom in Santa Cruz?

I feel like it would ruin the small old-town feeling of Santa Cruz. It wouldn’t be the same Surf City kind of vacation town that it is. Antoinette BennettSanta Cruz | Construction Management

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Cinsault 2012—la grande plage diurne The most popular wines on store shelves are those most generally known and available—Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, which are all superb for sure. But when you come across a more unusual varietal, like Trout Gulch Vineyards’ Cinsault ($18), it opens up a whole new world.