Fall Release Party at Fisher Vineyards

by Kelly on November 12, 2011 · 0 comments

Day 3 of our family reunion started with a release party at Fisher Vineyards.  What happens at a release party?  Well, at Fisher we started with a walk through the vineyards…

…then we watched a falcon demonstration…

…note the chick hanging from the falcon’s beak…

…then an owl made an appearance…

…and finally some wood fired pizza and lots of wine!


Lynmar Estate Tasting & Lunch

by Kelly on November 7, 2011 · 0 comments

Every year for our family reunion, my dad and Irene truly outdo themselves planning activities for us that showcase the beauty and resources of Napa and Sonoma.  Our visit to Lynmar Estate was no exception – we had the pleasure of meeting Lynn and Anisya Fritz, took a tour of the thoughtfully tended gardens, enjoyed a summer seasonal lunch, and tasted some exceptional wine. No surprise that we couldn’t resist leaving with a few bottles of the 2009 Russian River Chardonnay and the 2008 Quail Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir.

Lynmar Estate Gardens

Dining room at Lynmar Estate

Truffle popcorn to start…

Colorful summer seasonal menu by Chef David Frakes


Lamb & Large Format Dinner

by Kelly on October 1, 2011 · 0 comments

This July, Jeff and I celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary – and we thought our family reunion would be a great time to open the large format 2000 Far Niente Cabernet Sauvignon that our family and friends signed at our wedding.  While the wine was decanting, Jeff seasoned and grilled up some amazing lamb chops and our Lamb & Large Format night was on its way.

2000 Far Niente Cabernet Sauvignon
(6L bottle – can’t figure out whether this is called a Methuselah or an Imperial)

My dad opening the bottle…

Decanting was a must…

This lamb was beautiful and Jeff paired it with some rosemary fingerling potatoes
and a salad picked right from the garden.

Lamb & Large Format Night at Vineyard 511


In 2001, Robert Mondavi gifted $25 million to establish the UC Davis Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science and its new facilities to ensure Davis’ position as the world’s leading educational center for viticulture, enology and food science.  The institute’s vision -

The institute will be the gateway between UC Davis and a broad community of scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, policymakers, industry professionals and technologists engaged in all dimensions of wine- and food science-related activities. The RMI will be the global innovator in university-based wine and food sciences research, education and outreach.

My dad has been involved with the UC Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology for the last several years as part of the Board of Visitors and Fellows, which helped raise additional funds to build the RMI research winery.  This LEED Platinum certified research winery opened in January 2011 and has 150 identical fermentors allowing for experimental design in wine making research never possible before.  We were fortunate to be able to tour RMI and hear about its history and vision from Dr. Roger Boulton, a man truly passionate about his life’s work.  I really can’t say enough about how impressed we were with the institute and those involved.

LEED Platinum Certified RMI Complex

1 of 150 Identical Fermentors

Wireless Fermentation Monitors

Experimental Wine


Family Reunion in Napa Valley

by Kelly on September 11, 2011 · 0 comments

This year our annual family reunion took place over Labor Day weekend.  And as always, it was filled with amazing wine, delicious food, and fun activities.  I’m still going through all the photos, but here’s a peak at what’s to follow.

~Thursday, September 1st~
Tour of the UC Davis Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science
Lamb & Large Format Cab Dinner

~Friday, September 2nd~
Family Tennis Clinic at Meadowood
Tour, Tasting, & Lunch at Lynmar Estate

~Saturday, September 3rd~
Release Party at Fisher Vineyards
Tour & Tasting at Chateau Boswell
Pork & Pinot Night

~Sunday, September 4th~
Family Croquet “Tournament” at Meadowood
Tour & Tasting at Jarvis Winery
Burgers & Shiraz Dinner

~Vineyard 511~
My parents’ house and vineyard in Calistoga