2. Go wining in Napa/Sonoma

The second item on my 24 before 24 (the golden birthday) list was wining in Napa or Sonoma! I had been to Napa a couple of times, but never to actually experience what Wine Country is all about. This weekend Sean took me to Castello di Amorosa, a winery in a castle. A castle! (P.S. All photos are by Sean!)

On a drawbridge!
 A beautiful view of Napa behind me!
We took a tour of Castello di Amorosa which included some fun stats (it cost $40 million to build the place, not including actual vinting gear!), seeing a consecrated Catholic chapel, a very cool hand painted grand hall, where and how they ferment white and red wines, a very curious and certainly disturbing torture dungeon, and cellars full of barrels of wine! We had a barrel tasting, a very young (2 year old) Cabernet Sauvignon, which was delightful.

I quite like young vino!
As you can see above, my boyfriend is super cute.
Barrels and barrels!
We tasted a number of wines, brainstormed adjectives (we are quite the wine connoisseurs, you know), and rated them. We tried their chardonnay, described it as "wedding-ish, fruity, and winey" and gave it a score of 70/100. We tried two reds, a merlot (one of my favorites, which was described as "dad, would go well with steak, and tannins!, average score between the two of us: 50) and the Cabernet as a four year old ("oaky, rubbing alcohol, hydrochloric acid" - one of us liked it, the other didn't...). They paired the Cabernet with dark chocolate with sea salt, and accordingly it got two scores. 50 without chocolate, 60 with.

Our favorites were the sweet wines. We tried three: One called Simpatica, which got a combined score of 84! A muscat called Il Raggio del Sole, which got a combined score of 84.5. And, finally, one called La Fantasia, which was sweet, yet complex. It received the highest marks by far. A combined 95. It is the official wine of Sean and Natalie. :-D

From their website:
Tasting Notes:
An Italian style sweet and sparkling wine with is lower in alcohol, with bright aromas of cherry, exotic flowers and wild berries. Lovely black raspberry, plum and strawberry flavors in the mouth and just a hint of sweetness leads to a creamy, round finish.

Totally delicious, very sweet. Just like our love...
...I'm sorry, but I had to say it!

This outing was simply one of the most enjoyable I have had in a long time, which says something because every outing with Sean is a blast. It was so fun to go discover something new, a random castle in the middle of Napa, and a tasty, new wine.

1. Leave the country. (Canada!)
2. Go wining in Napa/Sonoma. (At Castello di Amorosa, near Calistoga, with Sean!)
3. Go backpacking.
4. Walk across the Golden Gate.
5. Finish my master's degree.*
6. Have a gluten-free beer tasting.
7. Buy my first diamond. (Nose stud!)
8. Crochet a baby blanket. (Or... type a baby quilt!)
9. Ride a roller coaster. (Disneyland!)
10. Take a midnight walk on the beach.
11. Make gluten-free pasta.
12. Paint.
13. Take a tap class in San Francisco. (Changed to Davis as I found a class offered here!)
14. Write my own sexual autobiography.
15. Do an entire roll of instant film using strangers as subjects.
16. Get over fear of touching raw chicken. (Rubbed raw chicken down with butter and stuffed it with garlic!)
17. Play the California lottery. (Lost!)
18. Hold a newborn baby. (Held little Daphne Kate!)
19. Create a signature cocktail.
20. Make my own goat cheese.
21. See the San Francisco Ballet. (Saw the San Francisco Symphony with Sean!)
22. Take the train to Reno.
23. Have my photo taken at 1 Infinite Loop. (Snapped by Sarah!)
24. Be a tourist in Salt Lake City. (Showed Sean around my beloved, and sometimes bizarre, hometown!)

2 remarks:

Sean de Guzman said...

I'm glad you had fun. Fourteen down...ten to go! You only have a little over a month now now too, but good thing some are already in the making.

The Damsel said...

That place looks awesome.