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Re: Santa Cruz wine tasting

107.205.10.55

Posted on October 16, 2016 at 18:04:32
mkuller
Audiophile

Posts: 35197
Location: SF Bay Area
Joined: April 22, 2003
Contributor
  Since:
December 28, 2003

...I took my wine tasting group down to Santa Cruz for a drizzly wine tasting weekend.

On the way down Friday we stopped at Ridge Winery in Cupertino, way up on top of the ridge for a sit-down $30 Estate Tasting. We tasted the Lytton Springs, a Pagani zin, a merlot and their flagship wine, Monte Bello. Nothing special here that you can't get for discounts locally. The guy pouring said their Three Valleys (made from the left-over estate zin grapes) was a bargain and his favorite but wouldn't open one.

After lunch on the Wharf we went upstairs to Vino Prima wine bar with a great view of the Boardwalk. They had generously poured flights of pinot noir and zinfandel we sampled.

Saturday we stopped at Swift St. where there are about 8 wine tasting rooms.

MJA was our first stop. We tasted about 8 different wines, nothing really impressed us. In past years I have bought their cabs and merlot, but not this year. The best they poured was a 2011 cab from their library.

Next stop was Rexford. Joe Miller, the winemaker, used to post here on AA. His were the most impressive wines we tasted. All of them were interesting and tasty, a couple of pinot noirs, a dry rose, a merlot and a few others. We all ended up buying a few bottles.

Silver Mountain Vineyards had about a half dozen wines to taste. The first pinot noir ($40) we tasted was by far the best wine there.

Things went downhill from here. Some went to Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyards to taste some unusual wines (like tempranillo) and a few of us went to Sones Vineyard next door. None of the wines were that good. At least Sones had some interesting artwork and t-shirts for sale.

Next time we'll go when the weather is better and hit wineries in the hills on the Corralitos Trail.

 

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No SkeeBall or Bonny Doon?..., posted on October 19, 2016 at 16:40:42
DeKay
Audiophile

Posts: 3907
Location: So. CA
Joined: November 22, 2002
I have fond memories of Santa Cruz (which was visited en route to our beachside honeymoon shack @ Pismo Beach) and which was later visited upon a couple reenactments of the same.

PS:

The TJ's Zin you rec'd was very good.

Gave a few bottles away before I opened/tasted one, so down to a few now.

Looking into an inexpensive Argentine Malbec to fill the gap, but probably won't be able to check it out until next week.

My only previous exposure to Malbec, as a main grape, had been with wines form Cahors in the 1980's, so am looking forward to trying a tamer version/style.




 

RE: No SkeeBall or Bonny Doon?..., posted on October 20, 2016 at 20:46:39
mkuller
Audiophile

Posts: 35197
Location: SF Bay Area
Joined: April 22, 2003
Contributor
  Since:
December 28, 2003
...we've had a weekend vacation place in Santa Cruz for over 30 years.

I don't know Skeeball.

We visited Bonny Doon in the late 1980s up on Bonny Doon Road when Randall Graham was still there and their wines were more distinctive.

Their tasting room moved to Swift St. (where the others were we stopped at) with a restaurant. A few years ago I tasted there and was disappointed at all of the unusual wines. After a few years it folded.

Now the Bonny Doon tasting room is on Hiway 1 in Davenport but I have not been by.

Glad you liked the TJ zin recommendation.

 

SkeeBall is a bowling game @ the arcade (if it's still there)..., posted on October 26, 2016 at 17:19:36
DeKay
Audiophile

Posts: 3907
Location: So. CA
Joined: November 22, 2002

Don't recall it from growing up in Iowa, but per my wife it was popular on the East Coast when she was growing up.

I prefer more tactile games of skill, like darts and table soccer, instead of video games and even pinball, so SkeeBall filled the bill.

We visited BD in 1994/1995, to pick up a pack of virgin BD labels they had put together for us, but don't remember where it was located (thinking it was an old two story house, but not certain).

 

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