The Wandering Wino Blog

Pasadena Pinot Fest

Pinot Noir Native9

Annual event to feature 100 wineries, 200 pinots, and scrumptious cuisine

from top-area restaurants—proceeds to benefit children and families in need

Media Release 

The fourth-annual Pasadena PinotFest—sponsored by Pasadena's top-rated Noir Food & Wine—will culminate on Feb. 11 with a Grand Tasting at the Altadena Town & Country Club.


Surrounded by the scenic San Gabriel Mountains, the Altadena Town & Country Club is the ideal setting for what promises to be a memorable afternoon featuring both fine wines and fine dining. Guests will have the opportunity to taste 200 pinot noirs from 100 leading wineries in California and Oregon ...

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The Real Deal Wine and Dine in Pasadena

Glass Pinot

Pasadena Pinot Fest Grand Kickoff Dinner 

to feature five chefs, five courses, and five wineries for a good cause


There are wine dinners, and then there are dinners worth getting my attention. In the short time of Wandering WIno's excistence, I have not written about anything related to a wine dinner. Mainly because there were none that really got me all that excited, and my wife, friends, and family will quickly attest, I do not fake my emotions well, especially when written, it's just not my style.

After working wine dinners and the gamit of restaurants, ranging from ...

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Paso Robles - ZIN Fest!

zin fest

Media release:

Celebrate 20 Years of Paso Robles Wine Country’s Heritage Winegrape Paso Robles, CA (December 13, 2011) Tickets are on sale now for the 20th Annual Paso Robles Zinfandel Festival, March during the popular Zin Tasting & Wine Country Auction Saturday, March 17, 2012. Two ticket levels are available for purchase at; ZIP (Entrance at 6 p.m.) and Zin Fan Del (Entrance at 7 p.m.).

“Zinfandel has been a key influence on the development and growth of the Paso Robles wine industry,” said Alex Villicana, board chairman of the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance ...

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Catalina Island Wine

Catalina Casino1

Catalina island is about 25 miles off the coast of Los Angelas California, and is a frequent tourist attraction for many travelers. It's close to an hour travel time by boat, and can easily be a fun day trip. William Wrigley Jr of the chewing gum fame, purchased the 22 mile long, and 8 mile wide islands controling interest in 1919. In 1975, Philip Wrigley deeded 88% of the island to the Santa Catalina Island Conservancy which he helped create. A Wrigley family Arabian horse ranch, El Rancho Escondido was built in 1931. 

While many things may come to ...

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Occupy Syrah

Syrah Shiraz

A few weeks ago, Bill Eyer, AKA @Cuvee_Corner tweeted about #occupysyrah. It sounded interesting, and as a big time Rhone wine lover, I was intrigued. I quickly got behind this wine movement. Think of me as the bar back in the movement.

As far as politics goes, that is a whole different thing, and we'll leave that for the evening news. This is about Syrah and simply has a catchy name. Marie Payton of #winechat had things lined up for Shiraz and Suzanne Barros from Wines of Austraila. It seemed simply synergistic to drink Shiraz/Syrah, and have some ...

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Wine Civil War - Why Do We Do It?


I try to spend a little time listening to what others are saying about wine. I read print, pro-media, books, and blogs. I also watch videos and like to ask people about their perspective. I hear many writers and winemakers saying things like, "drink what you like" and "I'm non-pretentious". It's that "come on in, the water is fine" type of vibe. Some really mean it. I'm also hearing very divisive apspects people choose about wine, in a very vocal manner.

What am I talking about? Chardonnay, oak vs no oak. I'm talking about this region ...

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(Photo - not the Neauveau, it just an illustration)

Today is a big day. Why? I'm still trying to figure it out. The third Thursday of November marks the date of release of Beaujolais Nouveau. Yay! (Heavy sarcasim)

When it comes to wine, I love all types, and I am a hard core California wine geek. I'm the guy that loves to investigate random wine varietals, and unussual related alcohols. When I leave the State, my inquisitiveness increases, as does my thirst for wine knowledge. I've been reading others' tweets, blogs, and talk about Beaujolais. I've been ...

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After a full year of many fun wine festivals and events, I found myself very excited about the inagural Paso Garagiste, on Nov 12th.I didn't know completely what to expect. As so few of these producers have tasting rooms, I knew there would be very few that I had any familariy. You will not find these wines at your grocery store, that's for sure!

We were told the event would take place at Windfall Farms in a horse stable. Now you may have a visual of Christmas lawn decorations, baby Jesus, and farm animals, or whatever your ...

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Paso Garagiste Nov 12, 2011


As the Summer closes and we make our way through harvest, here comes fall, and a new style of wine festival. The Paso Garagiste has a whole new spin on what we think of when it comes to wine festivals. 

On November 12, the grand tasting 2-5 PM, hosted at Windfall Farms in Paso Robles (Creston), will be an event celebrating, what I call the "mom and pop" winemakers, AKA the "garagistes." As their site explains, the garagiste is a term derived from France as a way to denigrate small lot winemakers, (often producing in the garage) who refuse to ...

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Vineyard Tractor

If you are in wine country now, keep all of your senses alert. Harvest is now. If you visit most California wine regions, you can tell there is a lot happening. I've been to something like 11+ California wine appelations in the month of October and the same thing is happening everywhere. You can see it with the tractors driving on the main roads, and in some cases, loaded up with bins of grpaes, just harvested. It can be heard from the back of wineries, as barrels were filled, and fork lifts brought in grapes. It could be smelled ...

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