I have been trying desperately to find the time to start writing, and to get some stuff up onto the website, and I have been failing. Badly. I have met a lot of writers (more than usual) since opening the restaurant back in October, who I have mentioned that I want to write, and their response is always “Just do it”. Thank you to Nike for the very inspirational quote. So here I am, after spending some time with the editor and writer for the new Above Sea Level magazine (shout tout to Aimee Hartley, the magazine is gorgeous!) , who told me the same thing, just start writing. I wasn’t quite sure where to start, but then I realized, where better to start than where I had spent the day with Aimee….I wanted to start writing about something which I am extremely passionate and excited about, and I met her at an event that I attended this past weekend.
In an effort to spend some time with a dear friend, I offered to help work a wine pick up party for not only one, but two of my favorite local wine makers. Upon reflection, they didn’t really need me to help, they had plenty of people, but it was great of them to allow me to come and help out. My friend and I both work at our “real jobs” way too much and when I saw that the pick up party was happening on a weekend in which I would be able to attend, I checked to see if he was available and maybe we could go to the tasting together. His response was that he “wasn’t invited”, and less than 5 minutes later he sent me a screen shot of an email from one of the winemakers, who was asking if he could come and pour, so rather than simply attending the party, our services were offered and that is how we ended up at the DRC Pick Up Party. This was my first time working a pick up party, usually I am there to Pick up and drink (excuse me – taste) wine.
The pick up part was this past Saturday and it was local, only a couple of miles from Crocodile. It was a collaboration party for Cruse Wine Co and Dirty & Rowdy wine club and mailing list members, but also a release of the first wine that the dynamic duo friends had made together. Playfully and perfectly called “DRC”, it was a nod to the geeky wine world….DRC is an abbreviation of Domaine de la Romanée Conti, which is a region in in Burgundy, widely considered amoungst the worlds greatest wine producers and DRC bottles are amoungst the worlds most expensive.
Dirty (D), Rowdy (R) and Cruse (C) wines are definitely some of my favorite wines, but they are not the worlds most expensive, in fact, they are extremely approachable and are thoughtfully created to be “table wines”. My friend who attended the event with me, introduced me to both of these winemakers, he totally gets me, and knew I would adore them. He was right.
Neither of the winemakers have any estate fruit and they buy grapes from vineyards all over California, so, as the way things go, they sometimes (often, actually) are forced to change the varietals produced. For me, this is a blessing as well as a struggle. I fall in love with something, then the next thing you know, it is not being made again, and my heart is broken….but then, of course, out comes the next release, and I forget about the wine I was missing. It actually works out really well for me. Commitment is overrated, and falling in love is fun.
When I arrived at the tasting I was put on “Team Hardy”, which was a thrill, he is the “Dirty” of Dirty & Rowdy whom I have met a handful of times, and he has to be one of the most interesting and genuine, yet fun and playful people I have ever encountered. I was given the task of greeting people, which was perfect for me, as I love to chat and welcome people and it was fun to see some familiar faces from not only Crocodile, but from the wine world and other local restaurants. People who share my passion for these amazing winemakers. It was also fun for me to be doing something different, to get out of the daily routine of running the restaurant, but to still be in the focus of what I enjoy.
I can’t thank these guys enough for allowing me to come and play with them for a day, and of course, they all came into have dinner at Crocodile after the event, so for a wine geek like me, the fun continued! Simply speaking, these wines and the people behind them, bring me pure joy!
I did get the pleasure of tasting everything that was being poured and some of the highlights which you can find at Crocodile as of right now (more coming soon) are:
- Dirty & Rowdy Alder Springs Mourvedre 2014
- Dirty & Rowdy “Familiar” Mourvedre 2015
- Cruse Wine Co “Rorick” Vineyard Chardonnay 2014
- Cruse Wine Co St. Laurent Pet Nat 2016
- Cruse Wine Co Alder Springs Tannat 2015
- Cruse Wine Co ‘Monkey Jacket’ Red Blend 2016