3.50pm, Sunday 21st March, Pleasanton, CA, USA
Back on the air to pick up where I left off yesterday at Whole Foods Market in Cupertino. Well, in their Culinary Center actually, a super demonstration kitchen run by chef Bill Peil, who is serious about doing good food, as evidenced by the photo of himself and cooking icon Julia Child up on the wall, as well as the fact that he has written “The Better Than Sex Cookbook”. He put together some Australian cheeses to complement our tasting, and folks came in to work their way through a varietal look at our world via Oxford Landing Sauvignon Blanc, Y Unwooded Chardonnay, Y Viognier, Oxford Landing Merlot, Y Shiraz Viognier and the Museum Muscat.
Good day had by all, including the local HWG rep for WholeFoods, Lara, and her husband, Martin, plus our top blokes in the wine section there – Matthew and Patrick. That’s me playing the ham in a very attractive young bloke sandwich, with my chocolate cupcake treat for the day. Thanks boys! Always a pleasure to do anything with these folks. I’m keeping score, and now I’ve done in store tastings in five WholeFoods stores: all three in Las Vegas/Henderson, the P Street store in Washington, DC, and now Cupertino in Northern Cal.
Then we hit the highway and buzzed across the Pacheco Pass to Chowchilla, hooked onto 99 South and whizzed into Fresno to catch the PBR Ford Tough Circuit Bullriding as the 3rd round started. Big night for us: We saw a couple of 90 point rides from Jody Newberry (USA) and the eventual winner Renato Nunes, – the backflipping Brazilian, plus we got to cheer for a couple of Australian lads riding in the bigs over here – David Kennedy and Ben Jones.
Decided not to go out to the big after party – far too old for that – nor the casino – so went back to the hotel to hit the sack. And lo and behold on the big flat screen telly – who was on at 10pm? Yep you guessed it. Castle with our boy Nathan Fillion. We just keep crossing paths!
This morning we went into the downtown retro Art Deco part of town and had brekky at the Chicken Pie diner, then went around to see Chuck and Jen at Vino 100 as I promised to sign the bottles of 2004 Signature that folks ordered from our tasting a couple of weeks ago. I always put on all the bottles I ever sign that lovely Irish toast that I picked up in Dublin on my first offshore job for Yalumba back in 2001 – actually it’s the only thing I’ve ever picked up in Dublin! – as it really captures the lovely way the Irish go about their business.
“May the most that you hope for … be the least that you get””
Then back onto the road and home to Pleasanton to catch up on the washing, reconcile all the travel expenses for the last month, and get set for this week, which will be HUGE! We get to do the three portfolio tastings “Taste the World of The Henry Wine Group” with the complete distributor sales crew – Monday, March 22nd in San Francisco at the Four Seasons Hotel, Wednesday, March 24th in San Diego at the Hilton La Jolla, and Thursday March 25th in Los Angeles at the Beverly Hills Hotel.
So the next time you hear from me, I’ll be in San Francisco, broadcasting live from the tasting, where over 300 wineries from most wine producing countries will be showing their wares to the Northern California trade. Big times! See ya when I’m all dressed up!