Saturday, August 7, 2010
Left early this morning to head up the coast to the Lompoc area. Two events today. Palmini grand re-opening and Clos Pepe release party. Took 3 hours driving because we took the coastal route. But it is so much easier on the brain not to hassle that 405/101 drive. Makes me much calmer when I arrive at the destination.
After breakfast in Lompoc we headed over to Palmini. They have enlarged their tasting room and the big day was upon us. Lots of wine being poured along with some library wines. Good nibblies were put out (we probably could have skipped breakfast) and some of the best "Truffles" I have had made by a small candy store in Santa Barbara.
Next stop was Clos Pepe. Time to pick up my 2008 wines and order the 2009's. Fortunately we were early enough that we got to park close to the house. No walking up hill on a dirt and gravel road. We were greeted by Cathy Pepe, got our glass and tray and made a beeline to the first tasting table.
Steve Pepe was pouring the Chardonnays. This year they produced 2. One is the traditional "Homage to Chablis" which I really like. The other was a barrel fermented in neutral oak. This Chardonnay was softer in mouth feel and will pair well with chicken and veal. The Homage is crisp and will go well with seafood.
Next we were off to taste the new Pinots and a few of the older one's also. The 2009 release will be stellar. I hope all the Pinot producers in the area have the same great year as Clos Pepe seems to have had. I was impressed. Steve & Wes did good.
Ate lots of wood fired pizza, cheeses, grilled vegetables and nice warm fresh from the oven cookies.
The optional BYOB theme was "aromatic whites". Again most everyone came through with a bottle and there was a lot to taste.
About 4:00 o'clock we headed across the road to Huber Vineyards to see Norm & Traudl. Tasted their wines and picked up 3 cases of Pinot (I thought). When we got back and I was pulling out the wines I discovered than Norm Huber gave 3 cases of Dornfelder instead of Pinot.
That is a whole other story about trying to get these wines exchanged. Good trip, long day. Glad tomorrow is Sunday.