Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Ode to Camping

I had forgotten how much I love to camp! Kellogg and I took Wenis and Cornbread camping this weekend as a joint surprise birthday present. Now some people, like Wenis and Cornbread for example, may not think that camping is that great of a present. At least not at first. After a couple of hours, a Mike's Hard Lemonade, and a passionate game of Cranium, they were hooked. Ok, maybe not hooked, but at least enjoying themselves.

On Saturday we woke up frozen solid, defrosted for a bit and made breakfast (yes, the kind with bacon) and then headed out to Pt. Reyes cliffs to check out the ocean. It was extremely foggy so we didn't waste time walking to the lighthouse, instead we headed straight for Pt. Reyes Vineyards for a little wine tasting. We saw on the list a bunch of wines with "Quail Hill" in the name. I thought to myself, that's odd, I know there's a street in Terra Linda called Quail Hill...sure enough, those Cabs were from a vineyard behind Kaiser in Terra Linda, about a half mile from my high school. Cornbread and I just about flipped, and we spent $31 on a 1996 (yep - the year we graduated) Quail Hill Cab*. It was the first wine that I had ever purchased in a tasting room that I hadn't yet tried. We took the risk because of its sentimental value to us!

The vino consumption continued back at the campsite, as did another hilarious game of Cranium, as well as hamburgers and corn on the cob on the grill. After dinner, we headed for the bar in Olema just to checki t out. It was really fun - good music on the juke box (sidenote - I am a Juke Box Hero), a hardcore game of Liar's Dice, and then back to the campsite we walked. We decided it was time to meet some neighbors...we met a huge group of partiers who took picture after picture with Kellogg in the hot dog costume as if it were something they'd never seen before, then Kellogg gave the costume to Wenis and we crashed a bachelor party. I scored a bottle of Joel Gott wine which I have yet to crack open, got some perfectly roasted marshmallows in, and cracked jokes all night with strangers and my girls.

Sunday, Wenis and I played the Bubblicious game (more later on this one...) and then I went to Silverado Country Club for the Napa Valley Wine Library event. I was pouring at a table, but did get to check out some of the other wines there. They were top Cabs mostly, pretty much all delicious. My two favorites were Groth and Buehler**.

Cheers to camping and free vino!

*Pt. Reyes Vineyard 1996 Cabernet Sauvignon - deep red with touches of chestnut (it IS 11 years old...), heavy and rich in flavor, tannic but not overwhelmingly so. All in all, a good bottle of wine, with an even better story.
**Groth Cab - round, full, luscious. YUM. Didn't even ask how much the bottle was.
**Buehler Cab (Estate? '04?) - gorgeous label, spicy, big, seems like it'll just get better with time; Page Buehler was extremely friendly and great to talk to! Definitely a winery I'd like to visit soon.

No comments: