Utah- Set Number Three

We’ve been busy bottling this past weekend and I’m behind on the last set of Utah pictures.  Bottling went well and I’ll have a few updates in the next week or so.  All of our 2012’s are now in bottle and resting safely.  Everyone commented how good I’ve gotten with the forklift and I did finally fell like I knew what I was doing.

We finished up our Utah trip in Moab as a good base for Canyonlands and Arches National Parks.  We did a bunch of short 1-2 mile hikes at Island in the Sky in Canyon lands and one long hike at Devil’s Garden in Arches.  The day in Arches was our only day when it got really hot but we started early enough to avoid the worst heat.

Below is one of the ‘fins’ we hiked across at Devil’s garden.  This particular one ended up in an 8 foot jump down.










There was lots of scrambling over rocks and following very rough trail markers to stay on path as we wound around from arch to arch.











The arch below was at the end of the very crowded paved one mile trail from the parking lot.  To continue on though you had to climb up about 70 feet of rock at a 45 degree angle.  I called it the separator and traffic on the trail dropped 95%+ after that point.









The views in Canyonlands were fantastic and I used the wide angle on the phone camera a lot to get panoramas.





We spent two nights in Moab and the second night we spotted a sitting area above the drive port at the hotel with a couple people drinking beer.  Finding somewhere to drink in Utah is always a challenge.  We told them we were crashing their party and went back to our room for my mobile cocktail case and a couple of bottles of wine.  It turned out that they were a group of neuroscientist working on an article for the National Geographic.  Hopefully there will be a mention of us in the article that comes out next year 🙂  We ended up having dinner with the group of 6 scientist and artist friend they were hiking with and the reporter for the Nation Geographic.  We picked a good group to crash a party with.

I learned a lot about how the brain works over the few hours we hung out.  Did you know there is something called ‘Cultural Stimulation Threshold”?  Basically if you come from a place with a lot of noise and find yourself in somewhere quiet you create enough noise to feel comfortable.  I also learned you should get outside at least once a week and do something different from routine to keep your brain working at its best.










The desert was in bloom for our visit and I took lots of flower pictures.  This was a favorite.











We stopped in Ogden and then Reno on the way home.  The final trip picture:

More Catching Up – What We’re Eating.

One reason we’ve not been blogging has been the number of other things we’re working on and doing this year.  There’s been lots of hiking, including a trip through the National Parks in Utah (I’ll get some pictures from that trip up soon, it was fantastic) and right before that we started the Primal Blueprint and did a 21 Day Challenge.

There really was not a huge change to what we were cooking and eating and I already had a good workout routine going.  There were somethings in the blueprint that were hard to believe, like you’d eventually stop thinking about what you’re eating, or you’d go 10,12,14 hours without feeling hungry, but those things have all happened.  The plate below I call a Primal Treat Tray.  The salami is home made and cured in our wine cellar.












We’re eating lots of meat and grass fed beef when we can find it.  I’ve joked with friends that this is the ‘Rib Eye and Bourbon Diet’.  I’ve had more rib eye steaks in the last 4 months than I can count.  One of the attraction of this plan was that unlike other similar plans drinks are ok, and wine is highly recommended!  Bourbon is actually the top recommended spirit as if I wasn’t in with the wine.










We’re also hitting the farmers market a lot and eating lots of veggies and berries.  I thought I’d miss bread a lot but I’m not missing it at all.  When I did try some a few weeks ago it made me sick for hours.  Scary to think you have to build a tolerance to digest bread and if you loose that it makes you feel terrible.  I’m down 26 pounds and feeling great.  I’m never hungry or feel like I’m giving something up and there’s no counting anything, you just eat when you’re hungry until you’re full and skip the grains and legumes.  Our hikes are averaging 6-8 miles now instead of 4-5 and we’re feeling well prepared for harvest this year.


Yep We’re Still Here.

We definitely go through writing phases and neither one of us has been in one so far this year. We’ve been busy though with a few trips including a great 10 day adventure of hiking in Southern Utah. We’ve been keeping up on the vineyards and all the 2012 and 2013 wine in order. We had a good spring release which we never even put up here. The order page is updated though with current inventory.

If there’s something you’d like though that’s not on the inventory page send us an email. I have about a dozen different wine right now that are showing 1-3 cases in stock. Not enough to put on the web page but we could check for you if there’s something you really like.

We’re heading to Crimson Clover tomorrow to tuck the wines there. The weather so far in 2014 has been great. We thought the drought would effect yields but so far it looks like we’re on track to have about the same amount of fruit as a typical year like 2012. We’ll have a Summer Futures offer out soon and then a fall release around Sept 15th. It will be our first wave of wines from 2012.

We are also doing a new diet and fitness plan, with lots of hiking and we’re averaging 12-18 miles a week. I’ll see if the writing bug picks up again this summer. We’re expecting a little easier harvest this year than last so maybe I’ll even get some writing in at harvest.


2007 Uvas Creek Cabernet Sauvignon – Last Chance

I’ve had the 2007 Uvas Creek Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon up for sale at our ordering site since the Fall Release.  I’ll be taking it down this week to get ready for our upcoming Spring Release.  There are a few cases left so please order soon if you’re interested.  Recent notes on this wine have been very positive and it’s ready to go for drinking now!

Small Business Saturday Sale

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  I love to cook turkey and stuffing and everything that goes with the meal.  For years now we’ve hosted what we call ‘refuge’ Thanksgiving and invite over anyone who is far from family (or looking to avoid family).  It’s always a great time.  I also have always loved the day after.  There’s nothing better than leftover turkey and college football and hockey are on from 7 AM until 10 PM.  I look forward to that lazy Friday.

One of the things I’ve loved the most about Thanksgiving is it’s avoided the commercialism that takes over every other holiday.  There are no gifts to buy, or dinners to book or really any excuse to spend money on things we don’t really need, so I’ve hated the ‘Black Friday’ curse that’s gotten worse and worse over the past 10 years.  I boycott Black Friday and don’t spend any money at all, especially at retailers who force their employees to come in at 3 or 4 AM or even worse on Thanksgiving day.

There has been a response to this though called Small Business Saturday, and I like that idea.  We usually go to an arts and crafts show on that Saturday and support people making things by hand themselves.  This year we thought we’d participate too.  Running Saturday through Monday we will offer 25% off all our Library wines.  I’ve dug through the inventory report and pulled everything we have enough of to offer for sales.  In some instances there are just 2-3 cases of a wine left so things may not last.  We’ll have three wines from 2006:  Eaglepoint Ranch Syrah, Uvas Creek Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, and Santa Cruz Mountains Cabernet Sauvignon.  From 2007: Eaglepoint Ranch Syrah, Uvas Creek Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon and from 2009 Santa Cruz Mountains Cabernet Sauvignon.

To get the 25% off enter the code SBS  (for Small Business Saturday) at check out.  I’ve entered exact inventory numbers into the system so as soon as a wine sells out it will stop showing on the website.  Happy Thanksgiving!















































So, I didn’t realize how many tree pictures I was accumulating this year, apparently I have a thing for trees in 2013.  I’m happy to share them with you.  Call it a vineyard intermission of sorts while we are busy doing manual labor thinning, tucking, spraying, repairing drip systems, etc.


Spring Release Shipped!

See that smiling face ?  Could be the glass of wine in his hand, or the steaks on the grill, but either way, that’s what finishing a giant task looks like around here!

Yay Team Stefania!

I’m certain some folks did not receive the Spring Release announcement, because for the first time we didn’t mail hard copies.  Paul sent out email offers in waves to each tier of customers.  If you missed it, or lost it, or deleted it, that’s ok, you can still pick up some wine.  The great news is that it’s now available online through this website!


And while orders were being packed and boxes were getting shipped,  I pulled out my paint brushes and started in on a huge project.  Painting the house, by hand, one brush stroke at a time.  Not like there was much vineyard work to do, in this photo the vines are still dormant.


Dad’s Birthday

tank for sale

If the Colonel were still alive, he would be 81 today.

We had a distant relationship after my parents divorce,  but I always made time to visit him on his birthday and fathers day.  No regrets other than he never got to try our wine, he died before the first vintage was in bottle.  He liked Paul a lot and the only time I did miss his birthday was the year Paul and I got serious about dating.

Over the weekend, friends invited us to join them on a tour of military vehicles in Portola Valley (just a few yards from two vineyards we have tended).  The picture with me standing next to a tank is what sparked this silly blog.  The tank is for sale: $40K.



Next photo is of the tank that inspired the tour for us.  It’s a fully restored Panther.  We happened to catch a video of it a few years back but didn’t remember or notice or pay attention well enough to see that at the end of the video, it refers to the restoration location in California.  Well, our friend saw the same show just recently and noted the location and called them up.

As it turns out,  you can tour the collection,  Field Trip!!

I can’t tell you how much fun I had.  Chalk it up to being an Army Brat, but I got to spend almost all day long with Dad, in spirit.

Paul and I had winery work after the tour and we were in the neighborhood.  Glad we cranked out the two hours of prep work on Saturday, because Sunday was a long day working.

All I could talk about the whole time we were working was the tank exhibit, I’m still talking about it!

This all ties back to my dad in a round about way. See, that tank is for sale, and something in my gut tells me he would have bought it.

paul outside          Here is Paul in the courtyard prior to the start of the tour.  We walked through 4 “barns”, giant warehouses actually, over the course of a couple hours and barely glimpsed the collection…it is Amazing.

Anyway, Happy Birthday Dad, I had a great weekend thinking about you.  I better get back to my day job and start growing some grapes.


Life happens.

So a quick update on the kitchen tractor.  I fixed it!  Ages ago actually, but here are some pics totally in random order.  I’m using this blog as a test, to see how the new platform work outs, seems like when I get really comfortable with a program it gets changed (and not always for the better) but I digress.

First photo is the completed repair with the new metal transmission cover, next to it the lube-y goo so it works smoothly, and top right is “in the shop” pending receipt of parts.

Bottom two pics are the guts cleaned out and waiting for new gears, not sure why I didn’t take a pic of the new parts in place before the lube-goo, must have been excited.

The very last photo is of the parts in order of assembly, a reminder that I needed to replace the pin in between the two gears.

And yes, that is a bottle of chardonnay on my work bench with a botched label on it.



Ok, figured out how to get text down here finally.  I’ll get the hang of this soon.  Lots of other pics to post up and chatter about.

The big news for 2013 is that things are going along wonderfully in the vineyards and the winery.  The lab work for the 2012’s came back solid and we’re starting to see bud break in the vineyards.

Cheers, Stefania

Website Changes

We’ve made a few changes to the website. First we changed hosting companies so you may notice a few pictures off on the blogs. We’ll fix these as we can. The most obvious change is missing featured photos right now.

We’ve also added some new wines that will be release shortly. Ordering for those wines will go live later this week. The wines are live now here but won’t be in the shopping section for a couple of days. With those changes done we hope we will have some more blogs soon.