June 22, 2010

Kal-e-for-knee-a Day one

Over the Memorial Day weekend, my husband and I traveled to California to visit my childhood best friend for her big 50. The first two days that we were there, we visited several wineries in the Napa Valley. Truth be told, I consumed more wine in those two days than I had consumed in the previous year. And I even requested smaller tastings!

It was so interesting to see the wineries and visit the tasting rooms. Our two favorite tours were the Schramsberg and Benzinger vineyards - interesting facilities with interesting histories. Here are a few pictures of two other wineries:

This is Castello de Amoroso. We did the short tour, having just missed the start of a tour, so we opted to see what we could on our own and do the tasting room at the end. This is a full size European castle built at some astronomical cost - like $34 million. It was complete with a chapel where Latin Mass is celebrated every Sunday morning and a dungeon. I saw the chapel, but the dungeon was only viewable on the tour.

The next four pictures are from Sterling Vineyards. It's a beautiful place. perched on a small mountain and to get there, you take an overhead gondola car. The views from the top were absolutely beautiful. In fact, the photo of the castle is from this vineyard. Here are a few photos of Sterling:

A view of the vineyards from the top of the mountain - I just love the neat rows of grape vines.

The aroma in the rooms holding the casks of wine was intoxicating - literally. I wish that I could find a candle that captures that smell. Between the smell of the wine and the smell of the oak casks - it was like a little slice of heaven on earth.

Tomorrow, Schramsberg and Benzinger. And then some of our visit with the birthday girl.


Mental P Mama said...

Heaven on earth, indeed;)

Nurse Nancy said...

Great pics...I do love that smell as well....can we recreate it in our own basements?

Noe Noe Girl...A Queen of all Trades. said...

We have some vineyards around here that I want to go visit. Are you coming to blogfest? There you will consume some wine too!

abb said...

I soooooooo want to go to Napa!