OnLine Newsletter
October 2005
Santa Barbara Itinerary
Wine Tours Taken Sideways
Santa Barbara Dining
Dining Out in Santa Barbara Wine Country
Wine Country Recipe
Chocolate Scream Dessert
Wine Country Featured Event
6th Annual Wine and Mushroom Festival 2005 Drawing
Newsletter Contest—Enter and Win!*
6th Annual Wine and Mushroom Festival

Discover the beautiful Mendocino Wine Country at the 6th Annual Wine and Mushroom Festival. This mushroom lover's extravaganza features winemaker dinners, guided forays in redwood forests, wine and barrel tastings, cooking demos, Craft & Bounty Fair, Botanical Garden walks, music, 'shroom symposium on paper making, dyeing, medicinal uses, cultivating, and identification. Win a weekend getaway to the Mendocino Coast or other great prizes with a Mushroom Fest Winery Tasting Room Passport that is stamped each time you visit a tasting room in the three Mendocino wine making regions. The more stamps you collect, the better your chance of winning. Call (866) 466.3636 for more information regarding schedule of events and ticket prices or email

Think Pink: Inman Family Wines

Think Pink: Inman Family WinesDrink a glass of Rosé and make a contribution to breast cancer research.

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and winemaker Kathleen Inman, owner of Inman Family Wines has decided to donate 15% of all online wine sales in October to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Kathleen is best known for her Russian River Valley Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir produced from her organically farmed Olivet Grange Vineyard, but in 2004 she made a limited release dry Rosé aptly named "Endless Crush" to celebrate her 20th wedding anniversary which coincided with harvest. All three wines are made to accompany good food and conversation; visit the Inman Family Wines website to order wine and be sure to check out the recipes that pair perfectly with these exceptional wines.

Wine Basics® Class and Harvest Tours at Goosecross Cellars

Wine Basics Class and Harvest Tours at Goosecross CellarsTo enhance your visit to wine country this harvest season, stop by the small, family-owned and operated Goosecross Cellars in Yountville. Open since 1985, Goosecross is known for their intimate and friendly tasting room and excellent wines which are sold exclusively at the winery.

On Saturdays in October at 11 a.m., join their FREE Wine Basics Class conducted right in the vineyard. This fun and informative course on wine tasting and sensory exploration covers everything from tasting techniques, to serving hints, to industry jargon in plain English. On Fridays at 10am and Saturdays at 2:30 p.m., join their Harvest Tour. Goosecross takes you through their vineyard, the crush pad and barrel room to teach visitors about the magic of harvest.

Goosecross Tasting Room also offers tasting and sales from 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. daily. Click here to download a free tasting pass. Click here for information about these events: Reservations are required.

An Exclusive Invitation from Fetzer Vineyards

An Exclusive Invitation from Fetzer VineyardsFetzer Vineyards is dedicated to natural winemaking to enhance your personal wine drinking experience. The beauty of this Mendocino home inspires the natural approach to winegrowing. You'll find it in every glass of the exclusive limited release wines crafted for the Fetzer Reserve Wine Club.

These are the wines the winemakers make for themselves. Special wines from select lots, including vineyard designates and unique varietals such as Petite Sirah, and Malbec, as well as exciting blends like Syrah~Grenache. For $45 every other month, you will receive two bottles of exclusive and limited release Fetzer Wines. Your membership also includes invitations to exclusive member-only events and discounts on all wine orders. For more details about the Fetzer Reserve Wine Club and how to become a member, click here or email

*Currently Fetzer only ships wine to the following states: California, Colorado, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and West Virginia. Call (800) 846.8637 for details.



Wine Tasting Itinerary - Northern Santa Cruz Mountains

Santa Barbara, CA
Wine Tours Taken Sideways

When folks in Buellton, CA heard about a little-known author writing a novel about their town, they were a bit under whelmed. Rex Pickett, who penned Sideways, would often visit Santa Barbara’s nearby wine country, chatting with locals and telling them he was writing a book about the wine country. But it wasn’t until movie scouts came to town that the owner of the now-famous Hitching Post 2, Frank Ostini, really knew something big was about to happen. Really big.

Though the wineries in Santa Ynez, Santa Maria, Los Olivos, Buellton and Lompoc have been quietly gaining influence for the last 20 years or so, it wasn’t until Hollywood came to town that this noteworthy Pinot Noir and Chardonnay-growing region got major national exposure.

The film’s main characters, Miles and Jack, spend a week tasting wine, eating, golfing and having some rather complicated romantic interludes that inevitably involve more eating and drinking—especially of the region’s emerging Pinot Noirs.



Editor's Pick -  Visit Half Moon Bay
Single and Fabulous

Santa Barbara is filled with fabulous places to visit, things to do, wines to drink and foods to eat. The locals are very verbal on their favorites and many establishments receive "Best of" votes year after year.

One place that consistently places at the top of the region's annual awards is Santa Barbara's family-style Italian restaurant, Palazzio. Palazzio has taken top spot in Best Service, Best Waiter, Best Caesar Salad, Best Italian Restaurant, and Best Restaurant to See and be Seen. Check out the ceiling, it is a replication of the Sistine Chapel’s famous ceiling painted by Michelangelo.

They were also voted by USA Today as one of the top 10 restaurants in the country that caters to single diners — those eating by themselves, not necessarily those without partners. Palazzio, 1026 State Street, Santa Barbara, CA 93101 (805) 564.1985.


Dining Out in Santa Barbara Wine Country

Dining Out in Santa Barbara Wine Country

Brother’s Restaurant at Matteis Tavern: A former stage-coach stop, this historic tavern was recently renovated by sibling restaurateurs who have made it one of the most sought-after dining experiences in Santa Barbara Wine Country. The menu changes constantly, according to the season and the chef’s whims, but is firmly grounded in classic American cuisine, including steak, veal chops, ribs, and hearty cornbreads. However, all are done with a contemporary flair with surprising infusions of Asian and French cuisine, imaginative sauces and elegant presentations.  Reservations recommended. 2350 Railway Ave., Los Olivos, CA (805) 688.4820

The Taproom at Firestone Walker Brewing Company: Casual pub grub, with lots of hearty steaks and ribs, as well as pizzas, salad and more. The Taproom is located in the brewery, which makes a variety of local beers—most of which you can sample while you eat. 620 McMurray Road, Buellton, CA (805) 686.1557

Alisal Guest Ranch: Though you have to be a guest to dine at the Alisal, weekend cowgirls and recreational ranch-hands are served hearty American fare with a European accent after a hard day of riding the range. Dinner entrees include fish, rabbit, risotto, steaks and a specialty of the house, veal schnitzel. 105 Alisal Road, Solvang, (805) 688.6411. The ranch’s chef also serves the general public at the River Grill at the River Course Golf Club, 150 Alisal Rd., Solvang (805) 688.7784.



Wine Country Survey

Tell Us What You Think

Your opinion matters! is in the process of re-designing the website. In order to make changes that best reflect the needs of you, our user, we need feedback. Click the link below and take this short survey that asks questions like, “How often do you drink wine” and “How often have you visited a wine country outside of California” All answers will be taken very seriously and remain confidential. 

Thanks for being part of the team.



The Chocolate Scream Dessert


Los Olivos Cafe is a popular upscale eatery that features many local wines and regional dishes. Menu items include chicken, sandwiches and pizzas for lunch and Mediterranean-influenced entrees like chicken parmigiana, pasta and salmon for dinner. Don’t miss the chocolate scream dessert, a flourless chocolate cake and caramel sauce, also featured in this newsletter for your baking delight.



Enter and Win!*

Spa & Wine Tasting Package

Enter to win 2 gift certificates ($150 value) to Osmosis - The Enzyme Bath Spa.  Osmosis is a Japanese style retreat nestled among beautiful bonsai and bamboo gardens.  An aura of peace will envelop every detail of your stay.  Make sure your vacation plans include a trip to the quaint town of Healdsburg filled with stylish shops and boutiques, galleries, restaurants and wine tasting rooms such as Kendall Jackson. Included in this package are 2 reserve wine tasting certificates!

You can enter to win by answering the following question from this Newsletter: "What place makes a pizza that has smashed heirloom tomatoes, maple and tamari glazed Nojojui Farms Delicata squash, Heavenly Slope corn, and smoked whole milk mozzarella?”

Click here to enter this drawing!**  The Winner of this Drawing will be announced on The Winner's Page after October 31, 2005.

So what are you waiting for…Sonoma wine country awaits your arrival!

*some restrictions apply
** No purchase necessary. Must be at least 21 years old to enter. Only one entry per person permitted. Winner will be selected October 31, 2005 by random drawing from the correct entries. Winner will be notified by email.  Employees of Freerun Technologies are ineligible. Void where prohibited by law.


Santa Barbara Wine Tasting ItineraySanta Barbara DiningWine Country Recipe
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