A Barrel of Fun
March 8, 2010
With all the rain we’ve had lately, the weekend sunshine convinced us to forget all of our obligations, and get out and have some real fun. The Mister and I took off for Dry Creek Road in Healdsburg to mix and mingle with friends and the rest of the tourists who journeyed to Barrel Tasting Weekend in Wine Country !
Barrel Tasting Weekend is an annual tradition where visitors are offered a pour straight from the barrel before the wine is bottled. Many times the winemaker is on scene to educate and answer questions. Everyone is so friendly and social, smiling from ear to ear. But I’m thinking that has a lot to do with the scenery and free flowing wine. :-)
The drive out to visit all these wineries never disappoints, spring through fall.
I don’t know if there is anything more charming than a white farmhouse with a wrap around porch. I made Mr CG stop just so I could take a picture of this ‘dream’ house. I think if I lived here, I’d just never leave. *Sigh*.
We stopped first at Lambert Bridge Winery in Dry Creek Valley. Call me crazy, but I really want a truck just like this to call my own – not to haul barrels, but all that furniture from thrift stores !
I made friends with the resident pooches.
Then I spotted this original candelabra – an old vine dipped in silver. Mega cool.
I love how so many wineries have dogs and cats, sometimes chickens and roosters, wandering the property. There’s something about these critters that feels so welcoming ! I made this feline friend at Rafanelli Winery.
We visited one of my top five favorite wineries, Ferrari-Carano.
I adore this formal French inspired facade.
There is an upstairs tasting room where I spied this beautiful pottery. I love the urn, and those candlesticks ? Be mine please.
Also another grapevine branch candelabra, this time a blanched version. Such a cool centerpiece !
Downstairs is the super chic modern tasting room Enoteca, nothing like the light and bright upstairs tasting room.
Rich wood tones and glamorous black barstools with gold detail.
Arched ceilings, troweled walls, and glossy black paneling and chandeliers.
Once you escape the tasting rooms, you must walk the grounds – they’re enchanting. Ferrari-Carano is famous not only for their wines, but their gardens as well.
Today the tulips put on quite a show !
The daffodils had their own exhibition.
Not to be outdone by the magnolia blossoms.
In welcome contrast to the formality of Ferrari-Carano, we ended our afternoon at the locals’ favorite watering hole, the Dry Creek General Store where you can buy sandwiches, sample cheeses, and hang out along the covered porch.
No city slickers here – only loud country music and good times !
Well that’s not entirely true. . .
Any place that serves wine and cheese along with beer and chips is our kind of place.
James Joyce once said, “What is better than to sit at the end of a day and drink wine with friends?”
To tell you the truth, I’m not really sure. :-)