Grgich Wine Estates

Last weekend my best friends visited from DC and South Carolina. Unaware the heat wave was going to be at its peak on Friday, we decided to head to Napa. We arrived in the valley around 10 am and it was already in the 80’s. We did a tasting at my usual V. Sattui and Mumm Napa. We were heading south on St. Helena Hwy and decided to make one last stop at Grgich Hill. It was too hot to roam around for longer than a few minutes so we heading straight into the tasting room to get down to business. The tasting staff was busy but we had a nice VERY enthusiatic guy wait on us.

He was very excited to tell us about the wine and was very a very animated fella. We decided to go with the Summer Flight because it was the most refreshing wine options.

I was really surprised by the history of Grgich Hills. I have heard about the “Paris Tasting” of 1976 but I was unaware the winemaker Miljenko “Mike” Grgich crafted the Chardonnay that won! Mike Grgich is known by many in the wine world as a legend. He is currently 94 and still passionate as ever about wine.

While visiting I saw their Grape Stomp area and it was super tempting. Here is some details:

Grape Stomp-August 18 until Oct. 29

You’ll create a unique keepsake by putting your grape-stained feet on a white “I stomped at Grgich Hills” t-shirt. All guests 21+ will also enjoy a glass of Grgich Hills Estate wine in a monogrammed GoVino wine glass that you can take home as a souvenir.

In 2017, grape stomp is available August 18 to October 29 daily from 10 am to 4:00 pm.

  • Cost is $35 per person
  • $25 for wine club members
  • Minors/non wine consuming stompers: $25
  • Reservations required for groups of 8 or more. Cost is $40 per person.



Summer Flight– $25

2016 Rosé

2015 Napa Valley Essence, Sauvignon Blanc

2014 Fume Blanc, Napa Valley

2014 40th Anniversary Chardonnay

Paris Tasting “Commemorative” Chardonnay

My Favorite:


2014 Paris Tasting Commemorative Chardonnay

This wine is $94 because this wine is priced for Mike Grgich’s age. He is 94 today and going strong and each year he grows older the wine will increase one dollar in price. Get it while its cheapest.

This wine is a copy cat of the the winning  1973 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay. This wine makes your mouth very happy with flavors of cooked apple, butter and a mineral character. Its a layered with flavors that coat your mouth in the perfect way.

Sum it up:

  1. Passionate staff
  2. GREAT chardonnay
  3. World renowned winemaker


Red Wine Sweet Eats

This week I have an extreme sweet tooth that inspired me to look for wine infused desserts to visually subdue my sweet cravings. These recipes all include red wine and look and sound absolutely delicious. These bloggers have amazing recipes on their sites so I suggest exploring. Also if you make any of the below desserts send some pictures my way! I’ll report back if I successfully make any. Cheers!


Hot chocolate

  1. 1 1/2 cup milk (I used 2%)
  2. 1 cup red wine (I used Kendall-Jackson Cabernet Sauvignon)
  3. 1/3 cup dark chocolate chunks
  4. Optional: coconut whipped cream
  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine milk and chocolate chips. Whisking constantly until chocolate is melted into milk and you have a thick and creamy chocolate milk. Pour in red wine and heat until everything is hot. Pour into 2 mugs or 6-8 smaller glasses and top with coconut whipped cream.
  1. This drink is RICH. So instead of just serving 2 (as shown in the pictures), I would recommended serving 6-8 in smaller glasses for sipping.



  • 1 pint of strawberries
  • 1 cup white chocolate
  • 1 cup strawberry wine
  • 20 plastic pipette tubes
Infused Strawberries


And the best part about these upgraded chocolate-covered strawberries? They’re so super easy, you’ll barely have any extra time to sample the strawberry wine. The first thing you’ll want to do is melt your white chocolate. You can do this in a double boiler, but if you’re lazy like me, you can just chop up the chocolate into a bowl and stick it in the microwave. Heat it in 20 second increments, stirring after each one, until it’s all completely melted. Dip the strawberries in the white chocolate and place them on a cookie sheet, then put them in the fridge to let them set. Depending on how thick you make the chocolate layer, this should take about 15 minutes. While you’re waiting, you can fill the plastic pipette tubes with the strawberry wine – now’s the time to sneak a few samples, if you’re so inclined. Once the chocolate is set, place the wine-filled pipette tubes into each strawberry. Then, enjoy!

By: Jamie Harrington



1 bottle of red wine (I used a Merlot)
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 cup half & half
4 egg yolks
1 vanilla bean
Red Wine Ice Cream

The first step in making our wine ice cream is to reduce the wine down to a syrup-y liquid. Pour your bottle of red wine in to a large pot and simmer over low medium heat until it is reduced to one cup of liquid. This took about an hour for me, but it could be sooner, so you should keep an eye on yours. Once it has been reduced, set aside.

In a medium pot, whisk together the brown sugar, and whipping cream. Cut your vanilla bean in half and scrape out that beautiful vanilla caviar into the pot. Add the bean pod to the pot as well.

Stir constantly while cooking over medium heat until it begins to steam, but before it boils.

Beat your egg yolks with a fork or with a mixer until they are light colored. Remove the vanilla bean pod from the cream and slowly add the cream in to the egg yolks. It is important to add the cream to the eggs very slowly so that they do not curdle.

Once you have successfully added the cream to the eggs, pour the mixture back in to the pot and cook over medium heat until it thickens and turns in to a custard. If it sticks to the back of a wooden spoon, it is done. Remove from it from heat.

Pour the mixture through a strainer and into a large bowl. Stir in the half and half and the reduced wine.

Chill the mixture in the fridge for an hour or two until cold. Add to your ice cream maker (I use this one) and freeze according to directions. (For me this is about 30 minutes). If it is too soft for your liking, stick in the freezer for a few more hours.

by: Jessica Pinney



1 cup red wine
1 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
1 1/2 cup milk.

Screen Shot 2017-08-20 at 10.13.06 AM


In a small pot simmer the wine over low/medium heat for 12-18 minutes, allowing it to reduce. Remove from heat and whisk in the chocolate until completely melted. Stir in the milk. Pour into your popsicle tray and freeze over night. (Note: you can use milk instead of wine for regular fudgesicles.)

BY: Emma Chapman (A Beautiful Mess) – If you haven’t checked out their site YA GOTTA!!



  • 16 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/3 cup red wine (pinot noir or cabernet sauvignon), at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature & halved
  • 3/4 cup natural unsweetened or Dutch-process cocoa powder


  1. Place the semi-sweet chocolate in a large heatproof bowl.  Microwave in four 15-second increments, stirring after each, for a total of 60 seconds.  Stir until almost completely melted (I had to micro mine for a couple more rounds before the chocolate was melty).  Set aside.
  2. Pour heavy cream in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Whisking occasionally, heat until it just begins to boil.  Remove from heat and pour over the chocolate.  Gently begin stirring with a wooden spoon in one direction.  Do not forcefully stir.  Once the chocolate and cream are completely smooth, gently stir in the wine and butter until combined.  Cover with plastic wrap pressed on top of the mixture.  Let the ganache mixture sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, then transfer to the refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours, or until it reaches a soft, scoopable consistency (I ended up putting mine in the freezer for a bit to speed things along).
  3. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.  Set aside.  Pour the cocoa powder into a bowl.
  4. Remove the ganache from the refrigerator.  Measure 1 teaspoon, roll between your hands into a ball, roll in the cocoa powder, and place on the baking sheet.  Repeat with the rest of the ganache.  For pretty presentation, I roll some truffles more heavily in the cocoa than others.  Serve immediately or cover tightly and chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve.  They are best served cold!

BY: Lori Lange 

Totality Awesome Wines to Celebrate the Solar Eclipse

Everyone is gearing up for tomorrows Solar Eclipse. You still have time to run to either Total Wine & More, Trader Joe’s or Bevmo to nerd out and get wine that is out of this world to celebrate. I mean this doesn’t happen often and the next solar eclipse that goes coast to coast isn’t until 2045!!! So a celebration is in order indeed! Many people I know are taking off work for this maybe once or twice in a lifetime experience. My brother is driving down to Nashville and my colleague drove up to Portland. In California we are only going to see a partial eclipse but I think its still pretty neat. People take this seriously and should take their lunar themed wine seriously as well. These wines, beer and spirits will make you feel like a true astronomer:




Valley of the Moon Cabernet- $20


Moon X Black Pinot Noir – $6.99


Trade Joe’s has a whole line of moon branded wines – I recommend the Velvet Moon & Honey Moon!

Luna Nuda Pinot Grigio – $14

Luna Nuda Pinot Grigio (750 ML)

Midnight Moon Blackberry- $19.49

Midnight Moon Blackberry 750ml (750 ML)

Sol Cerveza-$7.49

Image result for sol beer


Cheers & Happy Solar Eclipse!!!! 

DIY: Cork Stamps

Since I drink wine almost every night lately. I have a ton of corks starting to overflow in a jar. The other day I was shopping at Michaels and I was looking to buy lettered stamps. I was surprised at the cost of the stamps so I held off. I decided to take my stamp search to the internet. Thus coming across a video on how to make stamps out of corks that led me to make my own!

Materials: Corks, dark permanent marker, box cutter and ink.

  1. Chug a bottle of wine so you have a cork to use. Or if you have a stash like me gather a few that have a smooth non-punctured side.Corks .jpg
  2. Grab a box cutter or something that has a thin sharp edge (Swiss army knife would work).
  3. Draw with a permanent marker what shape you would like to carve out on the top of the non-punctured side of the cork.
  4. Take your cutter and start carving away (I found it was easiest if I cut first around the edge of the cork to create a deep enough difference between the shape and the rest of the cork around. The cork is squishy so make sure you cut deep enough around the shape so that when you push down it doesn’t just become a blob.W wine cork.jpg
  5. Once you are happy with your stamp shape – apply any color ink you choose and press on a piece of paper.
  6. Drink a few more bottles, gather the corks and continue stamping!

Wine Corks Final

(Not perfect but they have some character and charm)


-Happens for a Riesling

Meadow View Winery

Yesterday I drove vertical up the dirt roads of Moraga, California to find Meadow View Winery. My little Toyota Corolla used every bit of its 4 cylinder engine to make it up there but holy gorgeous, it was worth it. After reaching the top of what seemed like a mountain, I approached the most beautiful vineyard. The vines were cascading down a small hill with a beautiful house behind where two of the wine growers Doug and Isabelle live.

Meadow View - Bill

I was greeted at the gate by two border collies, a kitten, Doug and Bill English, the winemaker, it was quite the welcome party. Walking up the driveway I got to see immediately where all the “magic happens”. There were a few barrels in the driveway with their latest Cabernet Sauvignon that will be bottled in the next few weeks. Bill was cleaning out one of the barrels and a muddled wine and water mixture was flowing down the driveway.

Meadow View -Grapes

It was clear it was a collective operation at Meadow View Winery. All of them have their place in the process. It is a straight vine to table experience. They really leave the wine to do its magic with little to no handling through the fermentation process. Their wines are not filtered nor fined. They have 3 grape varieties growing in Doug and Isabelle’s vineyard, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Sangiovese. The rest of the grapes are spread across 5 vineyards in Lamorinda (If not familiar with Lamorinda AVA read my post on the up & coming wine region). For being a local operation that grows and produces in Lamorinda they have a ton of different grape varieties with the highest of quality wine.

I tasted their 2014 Cabernet Franc, 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon, 2016 Chardonnay and their latest 2015 Cabernet Savignon from the barrel that has yet to be bottled.

Meadow View Tasting

I was literally in awe with how good all these wines were. They all had very distinguishing characteristics that one would hope when drinking the variety. The Cabernet  Sauvignon it smelled of tobacco and roses and tasted of cherries. The Chardonnay was so crisp and refreshing with citrus aromas and flavors that were the perfect balance of tartness and smooth creaminess of caramel. All wines were smooth and easy to drink. These wine would easily compete with California’s largest AVA’s.

I enjoyed hearing Bill, Doug and Isabelle’s stories of how they came to love wine and start Meadow View Winery. You can see the passion and love for wine emunating from them. This is reflecting in their wines. Stay tuned on more posts about the lovely Meadow View Winery.



Nailed it: Wine polishes 

I was looking down while typing at work and started thinking, I very much need to take the time to paint my nails tonight. I was thinking of what color I would want to go with and given that Fall is approaching and as a true basic betch that I am (I LOVE FALL). Maybe i’ll get a darker color. Then thought WINE NOT get a wine color. Thus leading me to finding beautiful shades of wine colored/named nail polishes online. (Pictured above is Essie Bordeaux)

OPI – Malaga Wine -$10

transparent-pixel._V192234675_OPI Nail Polish, Malaga Wine, 0.5 fl. oz.

ESSIE – Bordeaux – $9

Bordeaux - Deep Red Wine - Oxblood Red Nail Polish by Essie


Zoya – Shop by WINE (A whole page dedicated for all shades of red wine)- Each cost $10

Zoya Nail Polish ZP458  Blair  Red Nail Polish Metallic Nail Polish






ORLY – Crawford’s Wine – $8.50




Sally Hansen – Wine Not – $6.59

Necklaces that will bring wine closer to your heart

Today I stumbled across the cutest wine necklace on Pinterest. It is a little rose gold wine molecule! How freaking cute right? For all those science nerds and wine buff’s this necklace is a perfect gift! (See pic and link to buy below).

This led me to search for other necklaces for those wine lovers out there who want to bring even closer to their heart on a daily basis. (Get it since it, since it would be around their neck) Okay I will keep my day job.

Prices and link to purchase below each picture!

Wine Molecule Comes in a variety of metals. $14.80 on Amazon
Pour yourself a glass -Sterling Silver (.095) and comes in a variety of lengths. Starting at $48 on Etsy
Corkscrew 14k Rose Gold $85 at Vinepair
“Look Ma no hands” wine holder Only in black. $6.99 at Amazon
Love Wine Pendent Comes in silver and gold. Silver is $56 at ShineOn
Moonlight Grapes Pendent Comes in different metals, sizes and prices will varies great depending. $495 GST from Georg Jensen


Pop Bottles – Comes with 3 charm options Antique plated silver charm Sterling silver necklace $27.99 on Etsy
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Celebration Time Dangle Charm Sterling Silver charm (necklace sold separate) $50 at Pandora
Make magic champagne long pendant gold and rose gold plated metal with glass and epoxy stone $104 at Kate Spade