Gray skies, temperatures on the chilly side and a few drops of rain couldn’t deter hundreds of wine lovers from enjoying the World of Wine barrel tasting event presented this past weekend by the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association. 27 wineries offered tastes of their wines, though not all offered barrel samples. If you check out my ticket on the right side of the page, you’ll note I paid a visit to every single participating winery. Ah, the sacrifices I make in being a wine writer.
I tip my cap to the Temecula Valley Wine Society who did a stellar job checking people in, pouring wine, serving food and so much more. It was great to see Marshall Stuart, Jim & Christine Hart, Dorian & Les Linkogle, Ray Falkner, Nick Palumbo, Marcelo & Damian Doffo, Robert Renzoni, Bob Olson (owner of Danza del Sol, formerly Filsinger), Jennifer & Rick Buffington, Phil Baily, Steve & Valerie Andrews and to meet South Coast’s head Chef Dean Thomas, Van Roekel winemaker Gus Vizgirda and Dave & Gail Bradley, owners of the new Vindemia Winery.
Food ranged from cheese and cold cuts to Beef Bourguignon and Coq Au Vin. The best quote I heard all weekend came from Marcelo Doffo. When I told him how much I enjoyed the barrel sample of his first Zinfandel he replied “We’re going to kick some butt with this wine, eh?” Celebrity spottings – Angela Bassett was at Robert Renzoni Vineyards for more than an hour Saturday and baseball legend Jay Johnstone was sipping Briar Rose Cabernet on Sunday.