Jun 28, 2013

Visiting Santa Clara Valley part two.

As we mentioned in a previous post, the number of tasting rooms in the area seemed conquerable in just a couple hard working visits. We were wrong! An area with a lot of history that dates back way further than most would imagine. This is an area that is easy to fall in love with, and with each visit and new place we stop at, this is just reaffirmed.

Here are some of the other great spots we tasted at on our last visit...

Kirigin Cellars; Kirigin Cellars is old! How old you ask? It was founded in 1916, making it one of California's oldest. They have two tasting areas and we chose to go to the one set inside the barrel room. Made of old large format barrels it's a bit like taking a trip back in time (in a good way) with all the old barrel wood and decorations. Standing there tasting in this environment was a real treat, with the barrels just a few feet away in the cool of the room where it all happens. Nice! There is yet another surprise, all the wines are in the **** category making them an excellent value. Even their Vino de Mocca, their famous dessert wine! This unique wine is infused with coffee chocolate & a touch of orange. This is one very unusual wine that they call "The Kissing Wine!" We think aside from an after dinner drink that at Christmas time it would be a fantastic wine to share.
The facilities are quite large and contain spaces for meetings and corporate events as well as large grass open spaces for car shows and dog shows and even cricket! Go by and check all they have to offer. Maybe go taste, buy a bottle and enjoy watching a game of Cricket on June 30th, July 4th, 5th, 21st and 28th. Been a while since Koala has bowled a bouncer in anger!

Sarah's Vineyard; Going to Sarah's Vineyard is like visiting your favorite Aunties house. She has a nice comfy inviting house, you love her and she has good stuff (comfort food). In this case instead of comfort food,  it just happens to be good wine. The tasting room has a very comfortable feel and is able to serve quite a number of people.
There is a lovely deck to sit out on and a great lawn area as well to enjoy the beautiful weather and that picnic lunch you packed to impress that date you have with you (married couples this applies to you to). By request on a first come first serve they even have bocce ball for those so inclined. Established in 1978 Sarah's Vineyard has a nice wine list to choose a tasting from. When visiting Sarah’s Vineyard you will find a Grenache vineyard 100 years old less than a mile away, and their Old Vine Zinfandel is made with grapes from gnarled vines planted, back in 1922 just a couple miles down the road. Go on by and experience that favorite Aunts place, you know the one with the tasting room.

Satori Cellars; Stopping at Satori Cellars is quite an experience. A bit like a cross between something Jimmy Buffet would set up and a Caribbean island bar. A fun friendly colorful arrangement that just puts a smile on your face even before you start on the wine. The tasting area as we understand it opened in 2008 and has been making people happy ever since.
The name Satori. Does it mean anything? well to quote their website (so as not to screw it up) 'Satori Cellars gets its name from two sources; Sandy, Tom & Riley who own the vineyard and manage the winery and from the Zen Buddhist term meaning “a taste of enlightenment” or “sudden unbidden moments of absolute stillness and peace in which time stops and the perfection and beauty of creation shine forth”.
Tasting started with some lovely bubbles, a Chardonnay and through some light, medium and bold reds. Some very nice wines! Sitting in the colorful bohemian setting, enjoying the wine and listening to an eclectic selection of music, was a great way to while away a couple hours. Next visit we will take our time. Go take it all in for yourself and see what a weekend almost island holiday is like.

Sycamore Creek Vineyards;
The history of the area is again at the forefront with Sycamore Creek Vineyards, as the winery property was originally known as the Marchetti Ranch, a pre-prohibition family vineyard and winery established at the turn of the 20th century. In 1975, the property was purchased by Terry and Mary Kay Parks, both former school teachers, who renamed the property Sycamore Creek after the small stream that bisects the vineyard.  It is now owned by Bill and Carolyn Holt of Morgan Hill who in July of 2005, purchased Sycamore Creek Vineyards.

The tasting room is set up in the working winery on a series of wine barrels and a couple tables with chairs for those who wish to sit. It is a very nice way to taste with the barrels and the stainless steel tanks right there. There is also a just recently completed out door patio with picnic tables, chairs and umbrellas set up for your picnic and tasting pleasure. Sitting out under the shade of the umbrellas on a nice day would be a great way to spend an afternoon. A nice selection of wine to taste and we took a 2008 Syrah Santa Clara Valley, to dinner with us one night. The 2012 Blanc De Rouge Santa Clara Valley, blush was just recently a WW. We purchased a couple bottles and found they do not last. Drank the first one while watching the sunset on Carmel beach the same day we bought it and the second one the next day at a friends BBQ.

Go by and discover what these wineries have to offer, we 'recommend' you do!

Happy Tasting Adventures,


Kiwi & Koala

Previous stories;

Wine tasting in Santa Clara, California

Sampling Santa Clara Valley

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