Hug Cellars & Bodega de Edgar at Buon Appetito A short time ago, our Vice President, Jim Lipman, and his wife Gayle were driving through Paso Robles, and came across Hug Cellars. Krissy at Hug then recommended their 'sister' winery Bodega de Edgar. These two wineries will be featured at our first dinner of 2018. We will have four wines each from Hug Cellars and Bodega de Edgar, and the winemaker for both wineries, Edgar Torres, will be our guest speaker.  We will be at Buon Appetito in Hayward, where Executive Chef Martino Oviedo has come up with the great menu attached.
Please click here to download the menu
Ceja Vineyards at Dana's Last year, before we were rudely interrupted, we were in the process of bringing you Amelia Ceja, and her family winery Ceja Vineyards. Ceja uses their Carneros vineyards for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and vineyards in Napa for Cabernet Sauvignon, and southern Sonoma county for Syrah, Merlot and more Pinot Noir.

Dana's Executive Chef, Michael Garcia has come up with a special menu to accompany the Ceja Vineyards' wines.

Please click here to download the menu
Zaca Mesa Winery & Vineyards at Buon Appetito Zaca Mesa was the third winery established in Santa Barbara County, back in 1973. They are also the third Santa Barbara County winery we have featured at one of our dinners (can you name the other two? - answer below). While Zaca Mesa makes Pinot Noir and Chardonnay like most of their Santa Barbara brethren, they decided long ago that their vineyard sites were better suited to Rhone varieties, and so that is what will be featured at our dinner.  

Buon Appetito's Owner & Executive Chef, Martino Oviedo has selected a sumptuous menu to accompany the Zaca Mesa wines.

The previous two Santa Barbara County wineries were Byron in July of 2002 (at Pearl's Cafe in Fremont) and Foxen Vineyards way back in March of 1995 (at the Sunol Valley Golf Club).
Please click here to download the menu
Once & Future Wine Co. at Dana's In the words of Founder and Winemaker Joel Peterson...

Once and Future Wine is the return to the original vision I had for Ravenswood so many years ago – a small project specializing in wines from unique older vineyards, made with a sensitivity to place and in a style that I personally love and believe in. Wines that force me to dust off the old redwood vats and get out a new punch down tool (my original is in the Smithsonian), wines that dye my hands a harvest shade of black/purple and sometimes force me to take an additional Ibuprofen in the morning. In short - wines of sweat, commitment, and love.

Because Once and Future does not (yet) make any white wines, Joel Peterson called his son, Morgan Twain-Peterson of Bedrock Winery, to "borrow" a couple of unusual ones from him for our first course.

Dana's Executive Chef, Michael Garcia has designed a delectable menu to accompany the Once & Future wines.

Please click here to download the menu
Alexander Valley Vineyards at Buon Appetito For our next event, we welcome Alexander Valley Vineyards to our neck of the woods. Actually, the primary speaker, John Wetzel, at our August 2008 Dry Rose tasting was from Alexander Valley Vineyards, but only one of that evening's wines was from his winery. Stewart Vandenberg, their Regional Manager, and grower of the "Salvation" Late Harvest Zinfandel, will be our speaker.  Buon Appetito's Owner & Executive Chef, Martino Oviedo, has come up with a few new items, along with a few tried-and-true favorites for the evening.
Please click here to download the menu
Passaggio Wines at Dana's On the Passaggio Wines website, owner / winemaker Cindy Cosco is quoted: "I believe something magical happens when you bring wonderful friends, awesome food, and great wines together."  This has been Diablo Wine Tasters' philosophy for 24 years. We were introduced to Passaggio by member Mac McCarthy when we were bemoaning the paucity of Chardonnays that paired well with food. Well, Passaggio's wines pair great with food, and Dana's Executive Chef Michael Garcia has come up with some great pairings.
Please click here to download the menu
Let's take a trip!


We are taking a trip to five Amador County wineries, with a lunch stop. Steve Arnold has arranged a great itinerary.

We often get great discounts at the wineries we visit, so be prepared to buy some wine and get some great buys on some great wines

The wineries we will be visiting are...

   - Cooper Vineyards
   - Sobon Estate
   - Story
   - Vino Noceto
   - and C, G, di Arie

...all of which have been featured wineries at previous dinners.
Please click here to download the itinerary
Belden Barns at Buon Appetito Back home again after our very successful Amador Adventure, it's time for another dinner. This month we will be featuring Belden Barns from the northwest shoulder of Sonoma Mountain. Jessica Mierau brought Belden Barns and their casually elegant wines to our attention. Proprietors Lauren and Nate Belden will be our speakers. Buon Appetito's Owner & Executive Chef Martino has come up with a creative and tasty menu which should pair very well with the wines.
Please click here to download the menu
Dashe Cellars at Dana's Continuing our alliteration streak we follow Amador Adventure and Belden Barns at Buon  Appetito with Dashe at Dana's. We have been after the Oakland based Dashe Cellars to be the featured winery at one of our dinners for years, and they finally relented. Dashe is known for their Zinfandels, and four of the five courses will feature a varietally labeled Zinfandel or a Zinfandel based blend. The first course, though, features a couple of white wines. Before you say "Rieslings are too sweet," please be advised that in most vintages, Dashe Riesling is drier than Rombauer Chardonnay.
Dana's Executive Chef Michael Garcia, has come up with a delicious sounding menu to pair with Dashe's wine offerings.

Please click here to download the menu
Fields Family Vineyard & Winery at C'era Una Volta Following Amador Adventure and Belden Barns at Buon Appetito and Dashe at Dana's, the only alliteration this month is New in November

We have a New (for us) winery - Fields Family Winery of Lodi (brought to us by our webmaster Peter Mierau) - at a New (for us) restaurant - C'era Una Volta (brought to us by member Toby Tover). During the menu planning, I noted that unlike most Lodi wines, which tend to be a bit "flabby", Fields Family's wines have a refreshing acidity, meaning they pair well with foods. Speaking of food, Chef Rudy Duran has come up with a great menu to highlight his restaurant's offerings as well as Fields Family's wines.
PARKING at, and on the street near C'era Una Volta is very limited, but there is a large parking structure adjacent to the theater, about a block away. Please plan accordingly.

Please click here to download the menu
French Champagne at Buon Appetito When we say Champagne, we mean from the Champagne region of France. Most of theses wines are not available elsewhere. Gary Westby, the Champagne buyer for K&L Wine Merchants, goes to Champagne each year to scout out the best deals in Champagne. In the past, Gary has been our speaker, but the last few years that we have featured K & L Champagnes, Co-President John Engstrom has presented the wines, and he hopes to do so again this year.  Executive Chef Martino at Buon Appetito has come up with a menu that pairs well with Champagne, which is not an easy task.
December is also when we award the Diablo Points prizes. In addition to the Top Three winners, a virtual ticket will be drawn for each point earned during the year, and prizes (the most distinguished wine from each winery we have featured this year) will be awarded. You do not have to be present to win, but if you are not present your favorite may get snatched up by someone else. Last year, we had a three-way tie for first place, so every point counts

Next year, 2019, will be our 25th year, and to celebrate we have a few things already in the works:
— Membership will be decreased to $25 per "couple" per year for our 25th year

— We are planning a multi-day trip. Tentatively in early September, to Paso RoblesEdna Valley and Santa Barbara county wineries.
— We have featured Hall Winery's Napa Cabernets twice before, and Walt Winery's Pinot Noir and Chardonnay once. Well the Hall/Walt family has added Baca Winery to make Zinfandel. We are planning a Hall / Walt / Baca dinner for 2019.

Please click here to download the menu