Food & Drink
If you’ve ever dreamed of being a winemaker, then this is your chance… The 2nd Annual Winemaker Weekend at the lovely VGS Chateau Potelle is just around the corner and there are still a few spaces left. Longtime friend of Taigan, Jean-Noel Fourmeaux will help you blend the best wine for your taste and then they will record your “assemblage” and bottle 3 cases of your personal 2013 red wine, etched with your name, in three different bottle formats. Once glance at the itinerary has us ready to sign on the dotted line!
Friday, September 19
6:00 – 9:00 PM: Welcome Reception in our Tasting House & Garden. We’ll start with our signature tasting – our wines paired with food bites by Michelin starred La Toque Restaurant – and then relax together over heavy hors d’oeuvres served with Library wines.
Saturday, September 20
9:30 AM – 1 PM: Blending Experience. First, I will instruct you about the characteristics and flavor profiles of each varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot. Through a blending demonstration, you will see how each varietal affects the other ones, how they each can be part of a blend and in what manner they can contribute to the blend you want to create. Through the artistry of blending, I will show you where the science stops and the art begins! Then I will humbly become your assistant winemaker. With pipettes, graduated tubes, bottles and glasses in hand, you will discover what best suits your own palate and craft your own wine! How fun is that?
1:30 – 2:30 PM: Lunch at C Casa. Just a short walk over to the Oxbow Market to enjoy tacos like you’ve never had. Open faced tacos that are purely exceptional!
3 – 5:30 PM: Cooking Class. La Toque has long been renowned for its wine and food creations. Chef Ken Frank works with his sommelier team to carefully pair each dish with a particular wine. He will demonstrate some of his favorite recipes and highlight what it takes to make food “wine friendly.”
7:00 PM: Apéritif and Champagne on the private patio of La Toque followed by the dinner Chef Ken Frank designed to accompany the VGS wines.
Sunday, September 21
9:30 AM – Noon: Brunch in the Vineyard. Your winemaking weekend will conclude with a leisurely brunch on Cloud Nine. Enjoy the serenity and beauty of our Mt. Veeder Mountain Vineyard.
$5,500/couple for this fantastic experience and 3 cases of your personal 2013 red wine, etched with your name, in three different bottle formats (750 ml X 24 bottles, 1.5L X 4 bottles, and 3L X 1 bottle). Wine will be bottled in June 2015. Accommodations and transportation not included. Payment is transferable but not refundable.
Making the perfect cheese board is an art. Here are a few tips on how to create a beautiful and tasty spread!
2. Add cheese. Select a variety of cheeses. Try different textures, regions, etc. Some of our favorite go-to cheeses are listed below.
3. Accessorize Accordingly.
4. Dig in!
It’s summertime and the weather is high, which of course means it’s time to whip up a batch of refreshing cocktails. We recommend a Ginger-Blackberry Smash from Maureen Christian-Petrosky’s new book The Cocktail Club. Serve them up to order, or in a chic beverage dispenser alongside Tara Guerard’s lovely hemstitch napkins. Either way, people are sure to appreciate a little heat relief!
1 cup sugar
1 four-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
2 teaspoons coarse salt
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 lime wedge
1/4 cup silver tequila
1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
3 fresh blackberries
1 thin slice crystallized ginger
In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and fresh ginger with 1 cup of water. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and stir until sugar is dissolved. Let the ginger steep over low heat for about 20 minutes, or longer if you want your cocktail spicier. Strain the syrup into a container and let cool completely.
On a shallow plate, combine the salt and ground ginger. Use the lime wedge to moisten the rim of a glass and dip it lightly into the mixture. In a shaker filled with ice, add the tequila, 1 ounce of the ginger-flavored simple syrup, and the lime juice; shake until chilled. Lightly muddle the blackberries in the bottom of a glass, then add ice. Strain the shaker into the glass and garnish with a sliver of crystallized ginger.
We’ve turned to the experts at Sallie’s Greatest Jams for a couple easy, refreshing ideas for summertime bites and drinks. Try one of these simple and delicious recipes for a night with friends.
Start off with a Peach + Mint Sweet Tea Martini
1 ½ oz. Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka
1 ½ oz. Orange juice
1 oz. sparkling water
1 heaping tsp. Sallie’s Greatest Peach + Mint Jam
Thin peach slice
Fresh mint leaf
Put it all in a shaker with ice. Shake to blend then strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a peach slice and fresh mint leaf.
Pair up your cocktail with a starter.
Baked Brie with Blackberry Spice + Sage
17 oz. round of Brie cheese
3 tablespoons of Sallie’s Greatest Blackberry Spice + Sage Jam
Fresh or Frozen blackberries
Slice the top rind off cheese leaving the side round in tack. Place Brie in the center of a Brie baker or pie plate. Put the Blackberry Spice + Sage Jam in the center of the brie. Top with blackberries. Bake at 400 degrees until cheese melts (about 10-15 mins). Serve with crackers and sliced apples.
Scallop & Roasted Pepper Salad with Peach Pepper + Ginger Dressing
1 lb. scallops
2 large green or red peppers (or buy roasted peppers and skip this preparation)
2 tomatoes cut into wedges
1 cucumber sliced
1 small sweet red onion chopped (can use white sweet onion or 2 green onions)
½ cup crumbled goat cheese
Mixed salad greens or arugula
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup Sallie’s Greatest Peach Pepper + Ginger Jam
Salt & Pepper to taste
Preheat broiler. Place washed peppers on rack in broiler pan. Broil about 15 minutes close to heat until charred. Put peppers in plastic wrap or a brown bag and let stand 10 to 15 minutes until skin wrinkles and can be pulled away. Remove loose skin. Cut peppers in half and remove seeds, then cut into I inch pieces. Arrange salad greens on plates (or in a bowl) top with peppers, onion, tomatoes, cucumbers and goat cheese. Pan sauté 1lb scallops or shrimp in 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 teaspoon butter. After browning on both sides, put 1 teaspoon of Peach, Pepper + Ginger in pan with 2 tablespoons water. Toss to glaze. Mix olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper and Peach, Pepper + Ginger jam together. Toss salad with dressing and top with scallops or shrimp. Serves 6.
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup butter
1 ½ cups sugar
1/3 cup lemon juice
¼ cup plain flour
½ tsp. baking powder
Sallie’s Greatest Blueberry Lemon + Thyme Jam
SUMMER is here! Whether preparing for your upcoming summer vacation or the new found heat or simply a cocktail change, these inspiring products are guaranteed to help you enjoy this Summer even more! Here are our current top 10 best sellers.
AND… Here are some other great finds for summer that we are loving right now!
These beautiful glass tumblers are sure to make any summer dinner party more colorful.
Simple white champagne bucket that works great for icing down wine or soft drinks as well. Great addtiion to your outdoor gatherings.
This sporty tunic is a great choice for relaxing poolside with the kids or a paddle-board or beach adventure. No need for added protection when wearing this UPF 50 (like SPF but for clothes) cover-up.
This comfortable and stylish maxi dress is a wonderful summer piece to throw on for any occasion. From a backyard grill out to symphony in the park or out to dinner, you can’t go wrong in this look!
A fun, colorful pair of short shorts that can go from day to night during summer.
These Grape Seed Age Protecting Shea Butter Soaps for the body are a great indulgence after a day at the beach. The Green Soap is exfoliating with Rosemary, Thyme, and Grape Seed for a healthy glow and the White Soap contains Soy Milk, Oats and Grape Seed Extract to soothe and protect skin while gently exfoliating. Try them out!
Hairspray with a bonus?! Moroccan Oil Intense Gold Glimmer Shine Spray is the original hairspray from Moroccan Oil. It not only will provide your hair with long-lasting shine but also protects it from the harmful effects of UV light and free radicals.
This Sport Loafer is a breathable boat loafer with a flexible rubber outsole. Inspired by the classic boat shoe, the Sport Loafer is a smart yet casual loafer and is perfect for boating.
This is a one-of-a-kind, handmade, solid oak skateboard will get you back in touch with your inner child and your kids will love it too.
Drizzle this specialty honey to add a bit of sweetness to baked brie, cheese and crackers or some sliced apple with fresh basil.
It’s not summer without something cold to grab from the freezer. After a hot day, cool off with these meyer lemon ice cream sandwiches. YUM YUM!