Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Paso Winemakers Helping to Find a Cure for Women's Cancer--One Bottle at a Time

A Pictorial Tour...(with a little commentary):
Helping to Fight Women's Cancer
One Bottle at a Time

On April 6th, a FUNdraising event was held to raise money for the Revlon Walk Against Women's Cancer.  It would not have been the success it was were it not for a group of caring, incredible winemakers.....This blog post is a THANK YOU for your help.

You are not only the best of the Paso winemakers...but you are simply the best people, you are people who care!  I am honored to count you as friends and to drink and share your wines, and so grateful that you joined my fundraising effort and helped make this event a smashing success!

Bring a Bottle To Share and FUNdraiser Afternoon

On April 6th, at our home, 40+ fun loving, wine loving, food loving people gathered together to help this important cause. The guests brought a total of 23 bottles of fine wine (plus two of Champagne) to share, while bidding on 22 auction lots of boutique, incredible wines provided by 14 elite winemakers...all proceeds to be donated.

Among the bottles people brought to share, sip and enjoy with each other during the afternoon and into the evening included (but were not limited to):  Plumpjack Chardonnay, Seghesio Zinfandel, Saxum Booker Syrah, Clos Solene Homage A Nos Pairs, Onx Mad Crush, Donnhoff Riesling, Torrin Banshee, Epoch Zinfandel, Sextant Night Watch, Curtes Pecorino, Alta Colina, Bouchard Aine & Fils Beaune Premier Cru, Cuvee No. 734 Jacquesson Brut Champagne, Daou 1740 and about another dozen bottles, mostly from Paso...but also including Napa, Sonoma, Italy, France...it was simply a wine lovers delight!

And then there was the food...OHHH...SOOO much GOOD food...and desserts.  But the guests and their enthusiasm made this a happening.....and at the end of the day....Thanks to the gracious contributions made by the winemakers below....over $2100 was raised...to be donated to the EIF REVLON RUN/WALK AGAINST WOMEN'S CANCER,  for credit to Team: Double D's!

For those who have not had the pleasure of enjoying these fine wines, look for the labels below in your specialty wine store, at your favorite restaurant or in Paso Robles.....taste what Paso is all about when you taste these fine wines!  And when you visit Paso Robles, try to meet some of these incredible people.

Don and Lynn Sonderling

THE ALLSTAR WINEMAKER  LINEUP---Helping to fight Women's Cancer
one bottle at a time.
Thank you for your contributing to our FUNdraiser!

Alta Colina:  Bob, Lynne, Maggie Tillman
Caliza:  Carl and Pam Bowker
Clos Solene:  Guillaume and Solene Fabre
Daou Vineyards:  Daniel Daou, and "family"
Epoch:  Jordan Fiorentini, Christina, Mark and the Epoch team
Mitchella:  Angela and Darren Mitchell
Nicora:  Nick Elliott
ONX:  Jeff Streakas
Per Cazo:  Lynne Teckman
Paix Sur Terre:  Ryan Pease
Saxum:  Justin and Heather Smith, Sierra Slade Christensen
Shai Cellars:  Shawn Halamy (Santa Ynez)
Torrin:  Scott and Viquel Hawley
Vines On The Marycrest:  Victor and Jenni Abascal

and....a special thank you to:
Rebecca McKay, Ethan Newman, Shelley Grant, Chris Laudadio and Uncle Chuck,  for your personal wine donations to the silent auction......and to everyone who has contributed to this worthwhile and important cause.

Enjoy the pictorial tour of our event....AND...if YOU want to help and join our elite contributors....just CLICK on the link below...which will take you directly to Team Double D's donation webpage!  Help make a difference!



          SHAI:  2009 ADOME

           ALTA COLINA: 2010 GSM and 2011 Old 900

CLOS SOLENE: 2007 Essence de Roussane & 2011 La Petite Solene

         Daou:  2006 Cabernet MAGNUM 

   MITCHELLA:  2010 Innuendo Noir

    NICORA:  2011 Euphoric
    TORRIN:  2007 Akasha 

   PER CAZO:  2011 Cabernet Sauvignon

    PAIX SUR TERRE:  Songs of Its Own (GSM)
           ONX:  2010 and 2011 Praetorian 

     VINES ON THE MARYCREST: 2011 My Generation
   CALIZA:  2012 Kissin Cousins and 
    2011 Azimuth

During the afternoon, as the above wines were auctioned off, everyone was enjoying themselves with a plethora of food, wines and champagne.....meeting new friends and catching up with old friends.

Don't these all look like happy people?  What's NOT to be happy about!


                   just a few of the 25 bottles that were open and being enjoyed

           DID SOMEONE SAY:  FOOD????

                                            and that's only about half                                                  of what was served! 



The afternoon successfully comes
to a close....
raising over $2100
to help find a cure for women's cancer
One Bottle at a Time!

Thank you all for your support

Thank you for following my blog

Please feel free to post on your website, on FB, share it with friends, comment,
and enjoy a good glass of wine by one of the elite winemakers that were so generous with their donation!


Sunday, February 23, 2014


Wine Group Night.....February 22, 2014

As the evening winds down, you could hear people humming The 4 Season's "Oh What A Night" as people said their goodbyes....full, sated....close but not quite wined out.

But let's start from the beginning...Join us vicariously as I review another perfect evening with great friends, food, and wines!  Because...THAT is what wine night is all about.

When God created Heaven and Earth....He also created Grapes....and thus...Wine was Born!  And for that we are eternally grateful.

Tonight was California Cabernet Night.......and Wine Night began as all wine nights do, with the arrival of people AND FOOD!  Somehow, we need to get the food thing right.  Either that, or invite another 20 or so people.  I'm sure we will keep trying.

Appetizers and mains and desserts and wines!  OH what a SPREAD!

The table is set--ready for arrivals

Tonight our group was joined by special guests and (newer) friends, Xochitl and Barry Maiman....just another one of my Internet pick-ups.  Yes, I am known for trolling wine lovers on the Internet! Also joining us was (non wine drinker and son) Brian....he may not drink...but he CAN eat!

Jacqueline, Pamela, Brian, Ellen

Matt, Mike, Paul, Xochitl

Upon arrival guests were greeted with a glass of 7 Angels, 2011 Grenache Blanc.  Light, refreshing, pleasant...a perfect way for people to get in the mood for what was to come, while standing around enjoying the (many) appetizers....chatting...and getting in the groove.

Lynn provided us with an assortment of meats & cheeses and a grape compote, a spinach & kale dip with crudites, crab cakes with lemon dill sauce, and a Mediterranean eggplant spread with flat bread,and a platter of fresh berries.  Dana made mini vegetable quiches and a bruschetta with buratta cheese.  Pamela topped crackers with smoked salmon, cream cheese capers & dill, and stuffed celery with blue cheese and a dollop of apricot preserves.  Ellen brought homemade egg rolls, fried rice, and jumbo shrimp with cocktail sauce.  And if that wasn't enough, we also had teriyaki chicken wings, Lynn's bowtie pasta with mushrooms, artichokes, peas and asparagus and Pamela's sweet & sour meatballs.

A few appetizers to get started

...and a few more!

OK....a little more food

Don't forget the hot stuff!

Time for the main event! Wine Tasting Wine Group Style!
Brown bagged bottles ready to pour

As is our routine...all wines have been brown bagged....and randomly numbered.  Starting with bag #1...progressing to bag #6.....tasting, talking, analyzing, smelling, eating, laughing, and jotting down notes on each wine over the next few hours....enjoying every sip along the way.

Doing what we do best!  Eat, drink, and have fun!

As always, the intensity builds, the anticipation...everyone is now thinking as we go around the table giving our individual scores:  What were we drinking?  WHAT WINE WON?!  Not that there are ever any losers.  All the wines are unique....and tonight.....they were perhaps the most different of any night!  Each wine was very distinctive and had it's own characteristics.

One thing was totally in agreement as Ellen tallied up the scores:   Everyone unanimously rated the bottle in bag #5 the WINNER!

The anticipation has been building (and as You the reader has been wondering), WHAT were the wines?  And WHAT was in bag #5???
Soooo many (great) wines

Time to unwrap!  The incredible layout of wines below:

Napa seemed to rule the night with four entries:

Arns 1995 Cabernet...this could only be from Paul and Ellen, who as always, reach deep down into their extensive cellar, to contribute something unique and unobtainable.

Cade 2007 Howell Mountain...from Dana and Matt.

Daou 2010 Estate Soul of a Lion...from Mike and Pamela

what's this..another Daou!  2011 Reserve Cabernet from Don and Lynn

O'Shaughnessy 2004 Howell Mountain from Xochitl and Barry

Robert Sinskey 2004 from Jacqueline.

So many distinctive, interesting, tantalizing wines....but tonight NAPA ruled!

The UNANIMOUS Tastes of the evening awarded #1 to:

Followed Closely by:

But WAIT!  There's MORE!  Dessert!!!   YES!  The dessert competition we have been waiting for! A mouthwatering flourless chocolate cake by Jacqueline (and an impromptu chocolate meringue that was totally mouth watering), and a DARK chocolate caramel tart with hazelnuts and espresso, provided by Xochitl...who also provided the perfect accompaniment:    Roxo 2008 Paso Melange, a port style blend of Cab Franc, Petite Sirah and Cabernet Sauvignon...

Chocolate Meringues by Jacqueline

What was left of Tart by Xochitl....because the photographer forgot
to take a "before" picture!  Sorry, too busy eating!!!

Flourless chocolate cake...Who needs flour?

Oh yes, more wine...bring it on!

Everyone agreed:  The desserts were a tie!  The perfect finishing touch on yet another perfect wine night!

8 bottles of wine, great food, great friends, lots of laughs.....what more could you wish for?

And another wine night comes to a close.   Thank YOU wonderful friends.....looking forward to the next time we can eat and drink and laugh and simply enjoy life together!

A Little TOO much to drink you think?



(feedback on my blog appreciated!  Follow me, forward to other wine lovers, post on your FB page or your website, delete..it's yours to do with as you please.....and I hope you enjoyed).