Great food and wine pairings to share with those you are most thankful for this season!

Thanksgiving is quickly approaching and it’s time to plan our menus and of course, our wine list for the holiday.

Finding a particular wine from our local Livermore Valley wineries can be a breeze with our easy search option.  Go to the wineries tab at the top of the page.  Once you’re there, scroll down and you’ll find a drop-down menu called “varietal.”  Click which wine you’re interested in and hit search.  The page will load with all the local wineries that carry that selection. Read More

Live Well with Zinfandel

Livermore Valley’s take on a quintessential California wine grape

There is a briskness in the air as fall marches on and it’s the perfect time to spice things up in wine country. In November, Livermore Valley highlights Zinfandel as the featured varietal. This bold and classic varietal is the number one planted grape in California.
The primary flavors include jam, blueberry, cherry, plum, boysenberry, cranberry and licorice.  Other aromas you may be able to pick out are black pepper, black cardamom and anise. Tannins and acid are generally medium to medium high.

How do you decide what to pair with this rambunctious varietal? Think barbecued red meats, and lighter meats like turkey or ham. For cheese, try manchego. For veggies think something bold like roasted tomato, red peppers, caramelized onion or roasted squash to bring out the wine’s fruitiness. Need more inspiration for dinner? Check out our Pinterest board for recipe picks.

You can find Livermore Valley Zinfandel at more than 20 Livermore Valley wineries.
Recent award-winning wine includes:

  • Eagle Ridge Vineyard 2012 Zinfandel (Silver, San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition 2016)
  • Stony Ridge Winery 2012 Del Arroyo Vineyards Zinfandel (Gold, San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition 2016)
  • Wood Family Vineyards 2013 Big Wood Zinfandel (Gold, San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition 2016)
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    #TBT to TOT

    Taste Our Terroir is less than two months away and I have been daydreaming about this event pretty much since it ended last year.  For those of you who don’t know what this is, here’s a quick rundown.  It’s ten events over four days that focus on Livermore Valley’s terroir.  What is terroir?  I thought the same thing too the first time I saw the word and no, it’s not a dog.  In a nutshell, it’s the characteristic taste and flavor imparted to a wine by the environment in which it is produced.  Check out this quick video for how to pronounce it.

    Alright, now that you’re an expert on terroir, let’s get back to why this event is so incredible.

    First there’s the Annual Quest for Food and Wine Pairing Excellence on Thursday night.  This year there are 18 restaurant and winery teams that will make fabulous food.  I love this as a chance to try a sample from a new restaurant or see how creative some of my regular favorites are.  Check out some pairings from previous years and try not to drool too much on the keyboard.

    The best part about the Thursday evening event is that you get to vote for the team you think has the best red and white pairings.  I’ve seen a sneak peak of what some teams are creating, and let’s just say… yum!  And this is just the beginning of it.

    The weekend events give you some face-to-face time with chefs and winemakers.  You can learn their processes and philosophies.  At the very least, you’ll have some very interesting tidbits to drop at your next dinner party.

    For the foodies, in the past there have been some amazing chef demonstrations and component tastings.  I love watching chefs prepare meals, their little tips help me so much when I’m burning cooking meals in my own kitchen.

    This year, learn how to make the perfect summer risotto with Linda Carucci, author of Cooking School Secrets for Real World Cooks and an event that focuses on different pairings of Brix chocolate and wine.  If you didn’t get enough of the competition on Thursday night, check out the

    Chomped! Competition at Whole Foods Market in Dublin Read More