Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Last entry of the 11th month, appreciating the new winery.  It’s integral dimension, element and entity.  Finally home.  The drive from Solano Community College to Dry Creek’s region was enough to exhaust my posture.  But I’m glad I didn’t slouch.  Think I’m falling back in love with the antagonistically luscious varietal of Zinfandel.  
Such a wonderfully unusual way to wind down the day, with the AlderCrew.  Have to scribe my respect for Rony, Colette, Karen.  Working with figures of similar vision does more than help.  It elevates, remedies.  Again reiterating my vision of wine’s intention: to bring Humans together, to nurture moments, memories.  Sipping...reflecting, appreciating this new elation.

Monday, November 29, 2010

vinoLit Vid, 11/28/2010

After a day like today, so much in my head.  From great guests in the tasting Room, to Alderbrook’s exciting new realities, to the Thanksgiving break being over, to the cold weather...Pleasantly dizzy, I guess you could say.  
Nice to reconnect with my cousin/brother Nick (Thanks for all the wisdom and help, bro!).  Still learning a lot about Social Media, and how it can propel your business, get you closer to your envisioned future/reality.  The Villa, here in Santa Rosa, becoming one of my preferred places for relaxation after a Room shift.  Again, a thanks to my blogging buddy Rony for sharing a bottle of an incredible ’04 Cab from the Frannie.  Sip, sip...  

Perplexed in Pinot...and Paris, again

Last night’s engagement with the Burgundian staple now throws me into recollection, eagerness, to go back.  Thinking of those streets, the pastries, the dinners, sounds surrounding the historical vestiges.  The river, the walking, my midnight scribbling sessions in the hotel room, looking down on a dormant set of French roads.  So, am I a “Pinot guy?” No.  I’m a Paris guy, a Burgundy guy, a town of Beaune guy.  This is what I try to convey to people when talking about wine, especially guests: wine is moments, an occasion, and, eventually, memories.  Still daydreaming about my next walk down Montparnasse, my next crêpe and morning Paris mocha...    

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Bennett Valley, Photography, the French Capital...

In the Room, in a little over an hour. The cold has cemented its footing in the year, here in Bennett Valley. Mocha on right, envisioning another project. Which one? The novel, the one for which I know I have more than enough pages. So what’s stopping me? My Self.
Calling in sick: entertaining, but won’t do it. Ugh, just remembered that I’m back in the classroom tomorrow. The opposite of vinoLit. Despicable. Until I get to Stanford...
Have to stop writing, get ready. Looking forward to taking pictures today. Photography, growing in significance with me. Visual poetry. Would love to go back to Paris, take more moments, scenes, shove them into a camera, write about them. Speaking of which, I need to revisit the content of the camera I carried to the French capital.
(Sunday, November 28, 2010)

Post 3

Wine industry morality, curious.  Why do I say that?  Because of the imperative selfishness on the behalf of few.  Most in this corner, acknowledge Equilibrium.  Past such, I continue with this Burgundian beauty.  Chardonnay, Kelly...pushing the pages forward.  She, here with me.  In elevated intimacy. 
Listening to beats, scribbling bent rimes.  Composure, arduously.  Impressively so.  As a writer/poet, I swivel in this cathedra, demodernized.  Not sure where I walk, I sip again.  The night’s theme, Chardonnay.  Her. 
Thinking I may continue with the script, even though I don’t like the format.  Should I try?  Sipping, assertively.  This Composition notebook, filling more steadily than estimated.  Time, cruel to me, all in this paginated artistry.  Sip, sip... 
(Saturday, 11/27/2010)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Mike thought of his drive from Monterey, seeing the sign for Stanford, on 280.  Sipping his ’07 Alexander Valley Chardonnay, Mike was greeted by a character that reminded him of Kelly.  A smooth yet daunting tapestry of notes contributing to a hypnotizing mouthfeel.  Floral nose to prancing finish, Mike sat there, unable to document his rendezvous.  The rain, pairing wonderfully with his moment. But he needed words.  On the page.  Now.
It was an open house weekend, and Mike was to be behind the marble the following day.  The Chard made him not worry so much about the herd that was to soon accost him.  
Mike decided to list words, ones that could capture the crux of what waved in the bowl.  Flirtatious, circuitous,  ineluctable.  This was Kelly’s pour, truly.  Mike was never much of a Chardonnay adorer.  But tonight, cemented.  Peach, vanilla, subtly floral with its perfume posture.  Mike sipped again.  Eyes, closed.  Dozens of lines flew past him, then back at him.  He didn’t want to write them down.  This was a true tryst, a Literary tumble, tussle.
Rain, returned.  Mike decided poetry was more fitting for a recording of this selection of seconds.
A dive into irresistible 
peril.  Sip, sip.
Room’s walls, nestling the
occasion.  Welcomed.
Strangely swirled in his session, Mike stilled his motions.  He looked to his right, saw Capote’s book.  He knew he needed to read more, but didn’t know when he would find such expendable time.  That wasn’t an excuse, he knew.  Hungry, Mike became bored with everything.  Time for a break, for reader’s sake.
This Chardonnay, wraps me in its blanket of expansiveness.  Perhaps my interpretive aptitude, compromised at this point.  Tired, but not.  What to write tonight: what I’m always debating, “considering.” Why does indecisiveness always follow me, my Craft?  Thinking of my script again, the screenplay.  Could be the effect of notable amounts of wine, then more Chardonnay?

Post 1

Thinking I’ll open a little bit of Chardonnay, instead of my usual commencement IPA.  The rain, overhead.  Lovely, the town of Monterey, Carmel, all the wine down there.  However, I’m relieved to be back in this chair, my base, at these keys.  Poetry, still spearheading my Literary movements.  Thinking of going for a walk in this rainfall, but then I’d be away from the keys.  Maybe that’s what I need.  Feels odd being in this office.  Why is that?  Is this how winemakers feel when back in the lab after a long-warranted vacation?  Feeling like a fighter, absent from the ring’s reality for a considerable stretch.  Needing my panacea of a character...Where is she?
Rain leaps at me.  Writing starts.  Then stops.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Elation in Consolidation...

Busy creating this morning and early afternoon.  Beyond pleased to have this day’s entirety to me.  My strategy: write/recite and release.  Put material out as quick as possible, in small portions.  Listening to my mixtape, “vault purge.” Sounding pretty good.  Poetry is tightening it tail around my armor.  Love it.
My beloved Kelly, not forgotten.  Want that to be known.  Just shifting my scribe strategy.  Want to go take some pictures.  Where should I go?  Russian River?  Have been meaning to get out to Pinot land.  Can’t let my Self buy anything.  Saving money, for the self-publishing.  That takes prevenience, over realities other.  Loving this mixtape.  It has to sell...
(Tuesday, 11/23/2010)

vinoLit Vid, 11/22/2010

Positivity.  That’s to what I wanted to respond on this cast.  You never know what lives will walk through the Room’s door.  What I enjoy about the podcast is talking to potential minds that appreciate this vinoLit life the same way.  Like the spoken word I’ve been embracing of late, I find the taping of this episode therapeutic.  Truly positive, as this vinoLit life.
One of the aspects of the life that I adore and admire, the element of tranquility.  Tonight, after meeting with my comrade of many years, I realize that this melody needs to be perpetuated.  What?  That of enjoyment, encompassing enjoyment, ease.  Wine, meant to be delightful, in all its elements.  A memorable occasion.  If I knew this was going to be horrendously stressful, I’d detach.  Upon finishing this installation, I thought to my Self, “What does the Room, whether Alderbrook or St. Francis or elsewhere, hold?” Too much to catalogue.  A tasting Room, the epitome of enjoyment, oenological enlightenment, relaxation.  So, I sip, sip.  Waiting for the rain to return.  Peace...

Monday, November 22, 2010

Midday Note...

Poetry continuously, so far today.  Excited about tonight’s podcast, and succeeding studio session.  Language has me addicted, officially.  Looking at these scattered pages here in the office truly does remind me of all the crates of grapes up in production, at all the wineries I’ve recently visited.  Constructing an opus tonight.  Mix Tape 1, holding at 12 tracks.  Finished.  Want to start recording new spoken word, freestyles, songs for the next one.  I like the thought of write/record and quick-release.  Don’t have time to waste.  Must say that Wayne’s philosophy has found its way into the vinoLit practice.  For tonight, eyeing an Old Vine Zin.  We’ll see.  Sip, sip..
(Monday, 11/22/2010)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sent to Slides

Tonight, the first of the three cluster that I intend to force fruition, of something.  My characters need enrichment.  The Room shift, 90 minutes, actually 89, away.  Lazily poetic, with Ms. Plath to my right.  She smiles, but pains beneath waves.  Last night, had a bit of wine, but nothing that sent me to stars.  The wine-food time, still in mind.  Amazing chef.  How do they do that, the culinary thaumaturges?
My book, possibly, hopefully addressed in tonight’s session.  Actually, yes.  Decreed.  It will take the posture of a blend: beautifully erratic, spellbinding, wrapping readers in magnetizing confusion.
Outside: smoke, saturated Earth,
delightful waves of air.  For
whom?  Maybe me.  Maybe
us.  She, not here.  This blend
of notes intends to
with me stay, be recorded
for you, us.  She, not
with me.  But maybe
in these notes.  Sharp
fascinations of a flavor
flurry.  Complex and
Competing with memory,
to redeliver the heavenly.
(Sunday, 11/21/2010)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

2010 Terlato Harvest Fiesta

Wine, as I’ve said, is occasions, moments spent with people about whom you care, or at least like. Up at Rutherford Hill the other night, I had an amazing, memorable set of scenes with the crews of Alderbrook Winery, Chimney Rock, and, our hosting tribe, Rutherford Hill. Great Mexican food and mariachi band made the evening ever better.
One aspect of the 2010 Harvest Party day upon which I’ll be reflecting for some time to come, aside from my blogging partner Rony’s charismatic lines on wine, was the drive from Healdsburg to Rutherford Hill. These are views I’ve never enjoyed, at least not like this, with big windows in a limo bus. Inspiring, humbling. Amazing day, occasion, and people. OH, and, of course, amazing wine from the three Terlato spots. Peace...and sip, sip...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Autumn Sitting

Attending a harvest party in Napa, later.  Excited to hop over the hill.  Bringing writing and media tools.  Maybe bring home a couple Napa Cabs.  Need some new ones in the collection.  Either way, an adventure, I’m making it.  Deciding not to post the 1000 word rant from yesterday.  Will push it into a larger work.  Always asking my Self, “Where are these pages going?” Much the same way a wine maker may ask, “Where are these grapes going?” Didn’t sleep well last night.  But, yesterday I did pass 1700 words, somehow.  My mood was polluted with angst, rejection.  But now, I sit in a sitting of forward, ease and balance.
Will write you later, after the trip, kindest of readers.  The temperature has dropped significantly in the last couple days.  As a result of this wine realm, I am increasingly more fascinated with weather patterns.  This 2010 harvest taught me a lot about weather’s impact on the fruit, anticipation of climatic change, variables.  Taught me much, just as well, about my reactionary artistry.
(Thursday, 11/18/2010)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Entry, Wednesday 11/17/2010

My poetry continues this night’s summation scene, alongside a Super Tuscan.  Not really tired anymore.  Thinking of my wine bar.  It’s music, color of the walls, type of wines I’d carry, beer, apps, color of the tables, booths.  Hard to convey such a vision.  Wanting rain.  Want to hear it, with her.  Miss my character.  My blend of a novel, featuring a seductively subtle varietal.
Mike closed his laptop, stared at the lamp’s light.  He knew that if his sessions was halted, his creative waves would still, cease.  So he just typed.  About her.  Kelly wasn’t there, in the room.  But she was there.  With him.  He could smell her peach-noted lotion, see her deeply nightish nail polish.  It made him sad, such entertainments.  He stopped, hating himself for it. 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Celebrating Zin-topia

This Friday, Zinfandel day.  A day to praise this mysterious varietal.  Does it have to do more with social media or the industry, or just appreciation, Human adoration, for a wine type.  All knowing me, know what I think.  Always going to love Dry Creek, and always going to herald Alderbrook Winery for their applaudable representation of Zinfandel.  Had to shoot an episode, ‘cause the reality begged such.
Still enjoying this ’06 Wagon Wheel, waiting for the ep’ to upload.  It’s solitarily intoxicating, working with a winery demonstrating true oenological prowess, with an artistic strand that even “novice” sippers would appreciate.  Either way...sip, sip...


Monday, November 15, 2010

Domaine Carneros

Loved this winery for years, bubbles and Pinot.  On the way home from work, I made my Self pull in.  As usual, I couldn’t cease with the pictures.  And, couldn’t wait to get inside and taste some compelling sparkling wines.  My acute, soft-octaved, and radiant hostess Heather took me through a flight.  What a riveting hospitality episode.  The inside of the structure is elegant, but not pretentious.  Precisely what I seek in a wine world journey, or scene: Humanness.  Heather talked with me about each wine as if we were in the same situation and circumstance, out tasting.   She didn’t employ obnoxiously obscure and/or esoteric lines, recite some exhaustingly elongated script.  We talked.  She enlightened, shared.  Anyone would delight in such sincere pleasantness.
I used to think that all champagne/sparkling tasted more or less the same.  Because of this winery’s handle on, and mastery in, this style of wine, the sparkles, my eyes and mind have been opened.  Frankly, this isn’t hard for me to write.  It’s like writing a love note to a lover I’ve for ages been loving.  I adore this Carneros gem, scribing humbly.  The views, food (by the way...yes, they provide cheeses, nuts, among much else), wine...perfect for a writer like me.  This isn’t my typical review.  Why?  I have a personal, long-anchored, tie to this domain.  

Hospitality is something that takes practice, specific training, passion, belief.  Same as the wine.  I could tell that Heather and her colleagues strolled in the like.  Nothing too aggressive, no weightlessness in dialogue or exchange.  Here, at DC, a wine country experience with an unparalleled homefeel.  Next time I’m pouring in the tasting Room, I’ll definitely the Self push to mimic these courteous and congenial strides, gestures.  Cheers to Domaine Carneros, sitting here at home, with my bubbly, eager for my visit next.  Sip, sip...
(Monday, 11/15/2010)

Closing Prose

11:34p.  Hating technology, at this curve.  Loved the Cab Franc earlier this evening at Monti’s, however.  Discovery is a primary infusion in this vinoLit Life.  Not excited about the morrow, as I have to scoot to Solano.  Currently, listening to the anesthetizing arrangements through speakers.  Pairing perfectly with this Sangio.  Time passing mercilessly.  Why does it dislike me, we?  Reading he poetry I scribed in the yester.  Again, pushed to pursue poetic.  What other stretches await?  Enthralling to anticipate.  
Mike thought of her thinking of him thinking of her.  He was entangled.  Mind split, in the time blip.  He thought of other ways to approach her, the character.  But he didn’t like thinking of her like that.  She, more.  He, tore.
The poetry dispersed from his ink like frightened cattle.  Mike enjoyed the sitting like few he had previously.  Around the corner, fortune, he was sure.  Kelly would wait, he hoped.  Where was she tonight? 
 (Sunday, 11/14/2010)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Liquidated Lazarus

Thought I lost my poetry book.  Relieved past my abilities of expression when I found it under my desk, in the miniature file holder.  Don’t remember putting it in there, but I’ll graciously receive this gift.  Poetry, becoming more of a priority with me.  Thanking Kelly.  Miss her.  Wonder if she connects me to her writings, drawings.  Wouldn’t matter.  I don’t deserve to be there.
Full-time rime scribe.  Find the Self alive.  Meaning less social media effort, much less.  This writing will sell itself, I will sell it, together We sell it.  These social media mavens, icons, gurus, what have, are truly unsettling chatterboxes.  Most of them, not all. 
How did this rime book get into that little file tomb?  Must have been during one of my more intensely wined writing stretches.  Trying to laugh about it, however I can’t help but sit here puzzled.  One of wine’s embryonic hazards.  Need to grow from this.  Okay, now I am laughing.
Mike, hurting from the schism separating he and she.  It had been too long.  He didn’t want to write.  “What would that do?” he thought.  He listened to his echoing beats, envision a blend.  Of them.  Then he quit, changing his position in the chair.  Sipping the Nebbiolo his friend made, he turned on the TV.  Somehow, the screen threw at him a channel playing one of his favorite writing movies.  How this night was peppered with engaging coincidences.  He turned it off, sipped...sipped.  Back to the page.  He’d try.  To write.  To forget her.
Rolling in reflection.  Red
through mortal wires.
She’d cure me.
In her mend.
Cured.  Safer.
Three live journals.  Is that too much?  One Composition book, one little journalist notepad, and yellow pad on my desk.  Something tells me I could, should, ditch the yellow.  But, for some reason, I enjoy scribbling on a different shade of sheet.  Odd, I’m sure, to those who don’t write, and probably most who do.  A different varietal of paper, encouraging.
Tonight’s varietal, Nebbiolo.  Loving it, fiercely.
Mike walked down 4th Street, unsure of what he was doing in Santa Rosa’s eclectic downtown zone.  He had his little notebook with him, but wasn’t in the mood to record, even with the cast surrounding.  A young lady, early 20s, shoulder-length vampirically delicious hair, dark blue eyes, entered his frame.  “Hi, Mike...do you remember me?”
At first he was lost.  But, then the accuracy set in.  His former student, Lindsay, from his 1A class a few years ago.  She was in a different role, it seemed to him.  “Yeah, of course.  How are you?”
“I’m good, I’m good.  I transferred to Sonoma State, as an English major, thanks to you,” she said, while embracing him differently than one might expect from a former student.
“Thanks to me?”
“Yeah.  After reading Martin Eden I realized I really liked literature, especially how you had us read and talk about it, the whole deconstruction thing!  So I took more classes at the JC and decided to transfer as an English major,” she said.  All Mike could think was how he hoped she didn’t go down the adjunct path as he did.  He, right there, while the homeless man sang to the parking meter, felt as though he had done disservice.  He had harmed her, Lindsay, one of his favorite formers. 
(Saturday, 11/13/2010)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Dry Creek Love Affair: Celebritized Mythology

Stop 1, Zichichi.  Have been a fan of Steve’s grapes since he sold them to St. Francis a few years ago.  When I heard, somewhat recently, that he’d launched his own label, I was more than intrigued, visibly frenzied.  I arrived on the grounds on a rainy day earlier this week, capturing pictures from the moment of landing.  Once within the security of the cozy tasting Room, I approached the bar, peered at the menu.  Simple, straightforward, confirming a mastery, a special hold, on Zinfandel.  With Steve as my host, I was assured a memorable set of pours.  He started me with the ’06 Estate Zin, which relayed one of the most distinguished profiles I’ve met, when it comes to Zin.  Very firm yet smooth with its spicy and rustic raspberry whirlwind.  Then, onto the ’06 Old Vine Estate Zin (Dry Creek Valley), which scored a 95 in the Wine Enthusiast.  Not hard to see why, with its nearly flawless note arrangements and palate presence.  Complex, bewildering, truly dazzling in the finish.  We concluded with an ’06 Cab, Napa Valley fruit.  Young in its personality, this wine promises to develop formidably with dark fruit, cigar box, herbal chords, and a tickle of earth.  Great time, great wine, hospitality, and views.  An honor to have Steve Zichichi pouring for me, to be modest.
Stop 2, Armida.  I have always wanted to come here.  Having enjoyed their wines for years, their tasting room and grounds were like a mythologized corner to me, an distant dimensional haven.  But, I found it quite detectable, just up Westside Road.  The tasting Room: lively, visual, friendly, informative (with the the tasting menu and literature placed to your front, in a sleek and svelte folder).  Everything from the Sauv Blanc, to the infamously impeccable Poizin, to the 2006 Stuhlmuller Vineyard (AV) Cabernet impressed me, kept me a fan.  Had the delight of meeting some members of “The A Team:” owner Bruce Cousins, winemaker Brandon Lapides, and “Merchandise Queen” Janet Linnett, who provided the majority of the hospitality at the bar, pouring.  I had my attention split in three: wine, tasting Room arrangement and flash, and the gorgeous view from the sizable window to my right.  So many things to walk away with, in terms of gifts and collectibles.  That combined with remarkable wine, had to contain the Self, enamored as I was, am.  No longer a myth, I know this place exists, and I will be coming back, to get Poizined... 

I remember at one point in my driving, stopping, taking pictures of everything around me.  Removing my pen and little notepad, scribbling.  The affair, enveloping a literary figure, overwhelming him.  My two visits bolstered the effectiveness of the valley’s conjuration.

Dry Creek, in its sovereignty and splendor, stays in my thoughts, sight, and cellar, small as it may be.  Pleased that I took the day to visit two that I’ve always wanted to.  So distinct, so delicious.  Especially now, in the autumn, after harvest, this valley has a reemphasizing magical net cast over its visitors.  The intensity of vineyard pigmented opulence to the flavor profile of the air, to the rain that chose to accompany me on my solo mission.  No where else in this wine world parallels.  My love affair persists, with a fermented zone individualistically pietistic in its gifts to us who sip, sip...  

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Chef Mike

So much in my head right now, don’t even know where to start.  Cold in this office, and outside.  Fall.  I prefer autumn.  Gives the reality the sophistication, recognition it deserves.  About to hit page 195 in this word doc.  Just did.  So again, I ask my Self, “Why do I not have a book on shelves?” My mood, up and down today.  My attitude, always, or at least many times, the issue, the problem.  But not today.  Not with this session.
Wine and food.  Have to face the truth, I need to learn to cook.  Wine and food need intermingling.  They demand it.  So I have to learn to cook.  Now.  Pair wines with food, from starters to main courses, even salads.  Where do I start?  I guess with what I sort of know how to fix already.  Pasta.  Red sauce.  Slight spice and pizzazz.  I will capture each phase of this self-education.  Should I start tonight?  Mushrooms, maybe some kalamata olives.  Can’t wait to be out of academia so I can give the entirety of my Self to such pursuits.  Enough of those statements; Yes, I’m cooking.  Tonight.  Decreed, indeed.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

vinoLit Vid, 11/9/2010

Nothing like some rain and a new beer to celebrate the end of harvest.  No one knows what this vintage will precipitate, but I’m optimistic, as are many.  Before shooting my podcast, I began entertaining the idea of attending a beer-centered event.  Want to see how others assess beer, cite what they detect.  I’m still learning.  I feel like beer is often looked down upon by certain characters on this wine stage.  I want to combat such attitudes with enlightenment.  But before I do that, there needs to be more immersion and union with beer’s magical diversity.  Looking forward to what this new expedition bestows.  Sip, sip...

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A.M. in Pen

Mike was ready for his solo blogging mission to Dry Creek.  As he sipped his mocha, let the cameras charge, he thought of the autumn tints on the drive home.  Then he thought of the prospect of him at Stanford, again.  He stopped at this fascination, and jotted class possibilities.
  1. Creative Wine Writing in Blogosphere vs. On the Page
  2. Fiction in the Tasting Room
  3. Journal Keeping and Wine/Wine Life
One, if not all of these, quite possible.  Thrilling, just thinking about it.  I won’t just be taking pictures and footage up in the Creek today.  There will be words put in the little pages of this journalist-esque notepad.  Love that valley, the drive up there, the wine, the wineries.  Always adventurous, exploratory, encouraging.  -9:58a...

Monday, November 8, 2010

In An After

11:22pm.  And so, I conclude the day in Hemingway mode.  Listening to these chill notes and tunes, I reflect on my invincibility, writing.  I’m in a mode of cruise 4ever.  I don’t know my progress’ point at the moment.  What a great night with the famiglia.  Them, to blame.  I enjoy their company, too much.  Dizzy, pleasantly.  100 words, difficult in this pose.  Angels in the Room with me, instruction, I’m certain.  “Stop,” they’d say.  
So, people that want to “blog” with me: if you’re not connected to the exploratory stride, bother another scribe.  Bothered by my inconsistencies.  So what should I do, now?  I would say, rest.  Surrender this evening.  A victory could nestle in the morrow’s story. 

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Back at Fresh, by Lisa Hemenway

All-encompassing experience in wine country life.  If you want to dine out, this is a selection that won’t entail regret or negative reflection.  If you want take-out, equally enchanting and delicious.  Wildly impressive menu and wine selection.  Beer selection, sure to please as well.  One attribute I like about the wine list, its arrangement by price, the fact it entails the ’06 Mayo Sparkling Wine.  Oh, beer lovers: Racer 5 on tap!  The decor, dark, elegant and calming.  I always stay a while, plus a few minutes.
With our drinks, we decided to go with the charcuterie plate, which included flawlessly flavored meats (cured and otherwise), little garlic crostinis, a couple mini-wraps, pickles, and I think even a couple more irresistible bites.  Lisa’s new gem in the Skyhawk Village even entails a grocery element, floral section, dessert, coffee, fine cheese, among even more.  But there’s a balance when you walk through the doors.  You won’t feel overwhelmed.  If anything, you’ll be like I was and stay, a while, have a glass or three, enjoy some elegant apps. 
Oh, I can’t forget about the pizzas offered.  Disturbingly delicious, honestly.  And, to accent my obsession with these artisan dinner, or lunch if you want, delights: the price point.  Finally, a chef/owner with reason, understanding of the economically harsh period in which we stand.
You know, I could carry on in this article by enumerating all on her menus, how great it is, and it is, all of it.  But, what I want to finish with is an expression of relief, how this fits into the wine world I enjoy.  There’s a Humanness within Fresh’s walls, while maintaining a reFRESHing strand of elegance.  I love how something this exceptional is literally right up the road, on 12 and Mountain Hawk.  Respect and gratitude to Chef Hemenway for gifting Sonoma County with such a ambrosial sanctuary.  And lastly, enviable hospitality.  All attendants, friendly, knowledgeable, not excessively conversational or intrusive, especially the young lady behind the bar last night, Colleen.  All in the service industry/hospitality could learn from her practice. 
Either way, go pay Chef Hemenway a visit at Fresh, have a relaxing time.  Be prepared to stay a while, plus a few minutes, and keep coming back.  Sip, sip...    

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Conscious, Then Un

About to shun social media universally.  Too much time spent.  Forgetting about the page, which is unacceptable.  Writing under gray, today.  Waiting for rain.  Fall colors, yesterday at Alderbrook, brilliantly punctuated.  Reviewing catches on my phone’s camera.  Want Fall to stay.  Winter not yet needed for this author.
During the life of the previous day’s shift, I further appreciated the many angles in operating a winery.  Wine club, hospitality, production, barreling, natural elements in the vineyard (soil, vine, fruit, leaf).  Not only does this provide knowledge and material for pages, but it conveys sense, peace, and elevated estimation of this land and industry.  Again, while shadowing a tour, I thought of producing my own wine.  But, again, where would I start?  Is this something I want to do, I asked my Self.  Loving the questions, the unknown/s associated with this vinoLit Life (notice no number sign before vinoLit).
3:57p.  How did it get so late?  What’s the wine of tonight?  In this quiet study of mine, fiddling with possibilities, dreams.  Counting the days left in the semester, when I can be entirely immersed in the industry.  When this becomes my reality, my Now, the pen will be moving even more fervently, spastically.
Back to the pictures.  Enamored, me.  Completely, with this optical poetry.  Social media, truly on the last of my already agitated nerves.  Won’t let it poison my peace any further.  Thinking of a wine bar, my envisioned wine (maybe Cab, Cab-based blend, or a Rhone, don’t know, yet).  All my thoughts, pertaining to wine and its Literary elements.  Social media, simply not needed.  Hemingway didn’t need countless interconnected accounts to complete his manuscripts.  And neither do I...   
He could have a conservatively-assayed wine bar/shop.  His own line would have a special corner, small production to start.  Mike thought maybe 100-145 cases to start.  He would write about every step, journal style, the same way he approached his shifts at the new winery, all the new knowledge within which he binged. 
Necessary for his front: music (chill elements, some slightly more lively), pictures and paintings.  Minimal merchandise; Mike saw this as a hinderance to any tasting Room, an excess of trinkets and meaningless collectibles.  It crowded an area that needed openness, freedom, dimensional fluidity.  He thought yesterday that a tasting Room should encourage exploration, not distraction.  Mike, lost in thoughts, looked out the window.  Reminded of the gray, he decided to close the monster, lower the screen down to the charcoal buttons.
He went downstairs, to rest on the couch.  He fell into an unintended nap with fantasies of total sovereignty.  Not having to search for paths, not having to beg for assignments from piggish department heads, see if there were any available shifts.  It was close, he thought, knew.
Smiles, though, as he fell into imagist clouds.
His book, on shelves.  Travel.
Wine, to his right.  Writing.
Sounds, speakers at the wine shop.
A smile.  From her. 
away.  Perfect for them.  If
there was

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Slightly Sensible Sitting

11/4/2010, Thursday.  Have the whole day to Self.  Need to take drastic forward steps today.  For one, I need to record some spoken word, have something to sell.
5:36p.  Lost the energy, willingness and vigor for a recording session.  I’m not excited about again meeting the mic.  Sitting here, aimlessly typing, documenting oddly coherent bursts, reflections, encourages this particular poet.  I feel like a lot of time is spent recording.  Fiddling with buttons, to adjusting levels, multiple takes to repeated mix-downs.  That time could be spent writing.  So that’s what I’m doing.
And that’s what Mike did.  He sipped, scribbled.  Ignored the social media; it was annoying him, plaguing his wiring with each clock tick.  Tonight, for the novel.  He loved poetry, the play it invited, but he couldn’t afford to play anymore.  32 next year.  He didn’t fear it.  By then he would be on the NYT list.  He had to be, for his Self, sanity.
Harvest was coming to a close, and Mike thought of 2010’s potential.  He wasn’t a winemaker, didn’t possess his sister’s vision nor grasp, but he was Human, could anticipate and imagine.  The connection between the arrangement of a Literary effort and oenological demonstration, production, became even more clear to him.  He wanted to dump his IPA in the downstairs sink, open something special to celebrate this session’s sensation, elation, vibration, the close of a tumultuous harvest.  But no.  He would just keep typing.  The process of recording spoken word to an instrumental couldn’t gift this, he realized.  Typing.  Faster.  He reveled in his creatively frenzied lunacy.
He realized that he just touched down on page 190 of his 2nd blog document, on the little monster laptop.  How did he not have a novel finished?  He needed focus.  Time begged it.  Reality begged it.  He, the same.
With the Zin open, he was thin, frozen.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Scene Next, Paired

“So how is it?” Kelly asked.
“It’s still good.  I’m not as much of a Zin guy as I used to be.  What do you think?”
“I like it.  Honestly, I think I like all wine.  If it’s wine I like, I’ll drink it.  I’m simple.  Too simple,” she said, sipping, smiling at him in the tilt of her glass.
“I started drawing.  Isn’t that crazy?” Mike said, setting down his glass.  He felt too much of the Zin’s grip.  He wanted to experience this, her.
“Not at all.  What are you drawing?” she asked, setting her glass beside his.
“More like glorified doodling,” Mike said, watching her reaction of interest blended with frustration.
“I’m sure it’s a lot better than you’re telling,” she said.
“Trust me.”
“I don’t know about that.  I just started.  I’m not as good with drawing and sketching as you,” Mike said.  He looked at her, wishing he could draw her, capture all angles, anomalies.  He detected that lotion, notes of sugared vanilla peach blossom.  That couldn’t be translated or delivered with illustration.  The moment was better, he decided.  He picked his glass up, sipped, sipped.  She paired perfectly.  She, altogether perfect.  For him.

2 Notes

A vinoLit approach, sure to sprout results, I’m hoping.  These autumnal visuals urge me to forward with the manuscript blend.  In a matter of minutes, I’ll appreciate them, on the exhaustive drive to Solano.  This final semester has taught me one thing, surely: follow inner-intuitive pushes.  I should have ceased with this adjunct nonsense long ago.  Grateful for wine’s varied seduction over the past year.  Me, now, for all remaining days, with vision, true conviction, passion.
Wine, one of the anchor ingredients in my Literary construction.  As long as I saunter in this fermented universe, the pages will stampede to publishable projects.  Once home from class, I’ll face the screen.  Type till tired.  Need to more so mimic the ways of Joyce, Updike, King.  The morning mocha’s calling, need to see if I can somehow excavate this horribly disassembled office for adequate tariff.
6:03p.  Been home for a while.  No pictures taken on the way home.  Just enjoyed the drive.  Slowly sipping this IPA.  This, night, not to be wasted.  Steps forward, necessary.  Not sure if the Zin on the counter is still good.  Opened it a couple nights ago.  If not, I eye a new Russian River Pinot.  
Mike thought about the dwindling evening, what his pages should reflect.  He didn’t believe in writer’s block, but that’s what he felt enveloping him, right alongside new quarrels with his social media reaches, and associated technology.  He wouldn’t waste time with nonsense.  It was time to envision the otherworldly.  On the page, pages.
“I read your blog today, while I was at the library.  You’re so passionate about wine.  Made me want to have a glass of Viognier right there,” she said, startling him a bit.  She leaned over his shoulder, allowing her left hand to land on his right shoulder.  Her lips hover near to his ear.  He counted her breaths, like light high-hat scratches in a gentle jazz piece.
His fingers trotted, atop already-toppled keys.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

vinoLit Vid, 11/1/2010

So excited the Giants won!  Had to shoot a little podcast, sip some beer for them, in honor of.  New discoveries in Healdsburg.  That little city a few miles north continues to hook me.  The ghost tour, need to do it again.  Lots to talk about, so I shot a video.  A fun episode to shoot, as I was in a delusionally  joyous state.
So, the beer Mom and Dad brought me from Oregon finally was opened.  Don’t know why I’m saying “finally,” as they only gave it to me a couple days ago.  Congratulations, Giants!  You’ll always be my team!  Sip, sip... 

Monday, November 1, 2010

Autumn in a Wondrous Wine World

 Can’t keep my eyes, camera, away from these shades, uniquely constructed natural palates.  Even as I type this, I’m distracted.  I pulled over, snapping still after still.  How lucky we are, not just to be in this industry, but merely to reside in true beauty of this magnitude.  Intense florescent blends, unmarred air, a crisp quiet.  The vines, seeming exhausted from harvest, welcome my visit.  For a while, I just slowly strolled, looking like a lost explorer.  Dauntingly intrigued...
I drove away, thinking of words to surround these pictures.  Not sure if this passage is adequate, at all.  But at least my delight, my savor of this season, is documented.  Sip, sip...