Wine Country

Centsational Style: Restaurant Redo

Monday, August 10th, 2009

We have a row of fine dining restaurants in the downtown area of my hometown.  Years ago, we made friends with Marco, the owner of a Zagat rated Italian restaurant called Risibisi (meaning ‘rice and peas’ in Italian).  A few weeks ago, Marco hired me redo his front window.  My task was to inject some style, texture, and romance into his window display without spending a fortune.  I was delighted to be entrusted with the task. 

by night

Let me give you a brief tour of the inside of the restaurant before I show you the upgraded window decor.  His menu features rustic Italian cuisine, with an elegant presentation.  Handmade gnocchi, risotto, beef carpaccio, osso bucco, cioppino, seasonal specials, with wines from Italy – and all made with fresh, local, sustainable products.  Our meals are simply scrumptious every time we dine.   

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Serendipitous Sunday in Sonoma

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

For Father’s Day, Mr. CG wanted to go wine tasting and have a picnic at some of our favorite wineries along the Highway 12 corridor that connects Kenwood to Glen Ellen in Sonoma.  Ah, June.  The sunshine could not have been more perfect today. 

sonoma valley grapevines

Our first stop was Ledson Winery, known to the locals as ‘The Castle’.  This Gothic French-Normandy structure

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Lavender Bee Farm Tour

Sunday, June 14th, 2009

There is a special farm in Sonoma County, California that receives visitors from all around the world.  When visiting the Wine Country, many make a stop at the Lavender Bee Farm, an all natural, organic farm where owners Rich and JoAnn Wallenstein tend their crop of lavender, their orchard and vegetable garden, and their fifty bee colonies.  This farm is a magical spot, and I had the privilege of a private tour over the weekend. 


The farm is planted with four kinds of lavender:  Grosso, Spanish, Provence, and English.  The word lavender comes from the Latin word “lavare”, and means “to wash.”  One cannot help but feel cleansed walking among the fields of lavender at the Lavender Bee Farm.  

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