Zhadi's Den

Random essays on wine, writing, moving to San Francisco, surfing, cats (exotic and otherwise) and zombies...depending on my mood.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Whining about wine, part three...

The next stop, Reverie, while picturesque, did nothing to cure my sober condition. Off the beaten path on Diamond Mountain (near Calistoga), Reverie is a family venture with a small yearly production. The grounds and buildings (homey structures surrounded by redwood trees) are a complete contrast to the stately grandeur and elegant landscape of Darioush. We were greeted by Andrew, personable son of the equally personable owner, Norman Kiken, and ‘Steve’ (not his real name), Reverie’s marketing manager. Andrew was a hoot, laid back, irreverent and funny. I didn’t care much for Steve, on the other hand, who had a supercilious manner that let everyone know that he knew much more about wine than anyone else present.

He was also very stingy with the vino, pouring tastes that barely wetted our whistles. Yes, I realize they have a small production, but c’mon! This was a busload of serious oenephiles ready to buy wine, not a bunch of tourists looking for a free buzz. And it took forever to get to the tasting portion of the tour. More often than not on the Spring tour, we were given a glass of wine (usually Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay), if not immediately, within 10 minutes of walking in the door of most wineries (and no, it didn’t take me long to develop a sense of entitlement).

We had our first taste of Reverie wine, their ASKiken Red (named after Andrew, btw), sitting in a clearing surrounded by redwood trees. The scenery was idyllic, bringing fairy circles or druid ceremonies to mind (depending on how one’s mind works), and the wine, scant taste of it that we had, was delicious. We had lunch at Reverie as well, in a picnic ground next to the redwood clearing, and then we were attacked by these huge, nasty, homicidal bugs, with Basil Polidouris music playing in the background and Denise Richardson had this perpetual freaky toothpaste ad smile, and…and…


Did I mention I’m watching “Starship Troopers” while writing this? Oh well…

…it COULD be “Showgirls.”

ANYway, lunch was served buffet style on two wooden picnic tables, an assortment of cold cuts, cheeses, fruits, roasted veggies, a veggie salad with cashews, pasta, breads, patés, cookies, and brownies. With lunch we were both introduced to the owners of Dyer Straits, an even smaller winery up the road. They served their 2002 ‘Field Blend’ Cabernet with lunch. Rich, lush, would love to taste it again in a year or so. And the Dyer’s, Bill & Dawnine, were both delightful individuals (I know, that sounds pompous, doesn’t it? But they WERE delightful!), making the rounds as we ate, answering questions, being generally sociable. And, as Billy pointed out, while we didn’t have a lot of the cabernet, considering how very small their yearly production is, they shared a generous portion with our group.

Next stop…and next post…Chateau Souverain…


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