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Walnut Creek Magazine

Elevating Wine Tasting

Feb 28, 2019 08:36AM ● By Fran Miller
If there’s anything better than a glass of good wine, it’s a glass of good wine with its perfect food partner. From cheese to chocolate – even popcorn and cupcakes – Napa Valley wineries are creating wine and food pairings that rival the offerings at some of wine country's best restaurants.                                                                                                                                     

Sequoia Grove

This high-end, casually elegant, gourmet 90-minute chef’s table consists of five courses perfectly paired with top-tier Cabernet Sauvignons. Limited to sixteen people, big fat delicious reds from the winery’s 1979 vineyards are poured and served with Alaskan Black Cod, garam masala, beluga lentils, pickled plum sauce; Cabernet Braised Short Rib comes with kohlrabi soubise, brown butter summer squash, and Cabernet demi. A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America with culinary gigs at Chateau Montelena and Signorello Estate, Chef Britny Maureze is crafting interesting dishing to satisfy guests. If you just want a sip of this or splash of that, check out the winery’s newly remodeled tasting ‘barn’. sequoiagrove.com.  

Round Pond Estate 

An intimate four-hour garden-to-table Sunday brunch begins with a tour of the winery’s sensory garden led by the winery’s executive chef. With the morning's garden-fresh vegetables in hand, you’ll go into the kitchen for a cooking demonstration then sip Round Pond estate wines at brunch overlooking their Rutherford vineyards. For dedicated foodies, they offer olive oil mill tours and tastings of handcrafted olive oils, wine vinegars, and citrus syrups. roundpond.com 

Artesa Winery

Established in 1991 by the oldest winemaking family in Spain, Artesa sits on the steep foothills of Mt. Vedeer overlooking the Los Carneros wine region where they produce world-class chardonnay and pinot noir. Artesa offers an array of seasonal food and wine pairings that range from caviar and tulip flute tastings to chocolate and red wine indulgences. artesawinery.com. 

Sterling Vineyards 

During the winery’s “platinum” tasting experience, guests drink a flight of reserve wines, including Sterling’s prized Cabs, paired with a series of tasty offerings like roasted winter squash, duck confit with fresh sage, a lamb meatball in leek and fennel tomato sauce, and a braised beef short rib and carrot thyme purée. sterlingvineyards.com.