Wine Tasting with Ian and Tatiana

Kyle and I went to visit a longtime friend Ian and Tatiana, who live in Sonoma, California. Ian was a family friend of Kyle’s and we hadn’t visited him up at his new digs. I felt bad since one of my all-time best friends Will also lives up there but we didn’t have time; so we’ll be definitely returning to catch up with Will soon.

Ian and Tatiana are artists. They are both amazingly talented on canvas with very distinct styles. They each have a studio in their Sonoma home and the walls of the rest of the house are covered in some of the most beautiful and breathtaking visions on canvas one can ever see.

Ravenswood Winery, Sonoma, California

We headed out to Ravenswood Winery a bit after noon. The weather was perfect and the countryside on the way out there was spectacular (as always). Think lush rolling hills with trees and picture-perfect farmhouses and perfectly-imperfect aged-out buildings amidst sunny vineyards and cows and sun, lots of sun!

We took the first flight outside overlooking the valley.  Because of Ian’s connection to the winery, we were treated to an extra-special tasting in another building, right from the barrels.  Each came from a different winery in Sonoma County and each wine speaks to you with its own bouquet, its own taste, its own finish.  I laugh it I think about how long it took me to realize the magic of combining food (cheese really does it) and wine.

Next we went to Hess Collection in Napa, California.  You walk-in, and greeted with a glass of delicious and light and fruity Pinot Grigio.  That was just the beginning.  The celebration of the senses begins.

In the Barrel Chai (pictured to the right), you can take-in the oak-laden air with your wine.  It all seems to blend into a deliriously yummy treat to the palate as well.

There are three floors of collected art on display.  I won’t go into this great and varied and fun collection.  You just need to go there and see, taste, smell for yourself.

The wines are quite good, the Black Mountain Malbec caught my attention.  Also, we all agreed the Hess 2004 Cabernet Savignon (Mount Veeder) was to die for.

We had dinner at a great deli in Napa.  Another tasty round of wine was provided by Ian and we each had a sandwich sang the perfect duet with the bevs.  Oh the joy!