The days drift into fall and we anticipate enjoying the fruits of the vines that have been ripening for months in the sun. The weather that was fickle all summer sent contradictory messages to the budding grapes. Growers and winemakers cast dubious eyes at them, questioning in their minds as to what the final outcome would be.But finally the day dawns and it is harvest. Picking starts early right at sunrise. The workers can’t resist taking a taste as they snip away freeing the clusters from their prison of vines. And it tastes good!
Soon it is time for the harvest parties, some great noisy affairs, others more genteel. We join the group at Per Cazo Cellars on a balmy Sunday afternoon to sit with friends by the pool and sample the fine wine.
Per Cazo, means “by chance” and many of us share the same story having stumbled upon the place during the summer, by chance. A pleasant discovery to find this small family winery run by Lynne and Dave Teckman that sits adjacent to a bubbling creek amidst the oak trees.
Today we sample five new releases starting with a blend of three white Rhone varietals, Grenache Blanc, Roussanne, and Viognier called Tres Blanc. We pair this with an interesting cheese that has bits of apricot in it.
Then we go on to the Reds, ZinG, a blend of Zinfandel and Grenache, Epi Telos, that blends Grenache, Mourvedre, and Syrah, and Confluent, blending Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, and Cabernet Franc. We enjoy this with outstanding cuisine created by Master Chef, Nanette Smalley of Simply Delicious.
Nanette serves us pork tenderloin with plum sauce, a salad of quinoa (a grain), lentils, celery root in white wine vinegar with bleu cheese, a boysenberry/cheese tart, and a piece of heavenly chocolate.
We top off our repast with Per Cazo’s Late Harvest selection that is 100% Zinfandel. Actually not only the chocolate is heavenly, the whole spread is!
Time slips by and we are enjoying the company, sharing our choices of our favorite wines and wineries, and finding out little bits about the lives of these new friends that we have met today. Even Matti the Teckman’s dog gets into the groove.