Monday, May 05, 2008

SLO-Town Recap

I'm back and have loads of pictures to share so be prepared for a photo-heavy post! I had a nice weekend away. I drove down with Claire and met AM in Pismo Beach. I've only driven through the area and that was about 8 years ago so it had been a really long time since I've been in this up and coming locale of the Central Coast. The weekend was filled with lots of chatter, way too much food, even more wine and what I would like to think was a good time had by all.

Here is the view from the deck at the hotel. This was not the view from the room but from the public deck at the rear of the hotel near the lovely pool and spa that we didn't have the time to visit. I guess all that wine tasting got in the way of sunbathing and beachwalking!

Birdie footprints in the sand
On our arrival, we took a walk to Pismo Pier and then walked back to the hotel. Here is the view on our walk back.
On our visit to Alma Rosa Winery, I came across this little excerpt from a poem hidden behind the door. Considering the pretense for the weekend, I had to take a picture. It reads "Now here it is, the morning after the night before; The drinking and singing are sone... Red-eyed greeting the bird-song dawn, Trying to remember all of last night's fun." This poem does hit home as there have been many headachy mornings in my past where I have tried to remember how much I have drank, what regretful things I may have said and most importantly, how the heck I got home! My days are much tamer now...I don't usually get all crazy despite people calling me a "wino". This was also an interesting winery as they claim to be completely organic...interesting.
The vines at Justin Winery. The grounds at this winery were beautiful and welcoming. Plus, their Orphan wine was super yummy...
Another vineyard snap at Justin Winery.
Here is a snap of the bizarre and eclectic collection of wigs and hats at Clautiere Vineyard. We had a few laughs trying on the various ones as we wine tasted but I do have to say that the attitude of the pourer left a lot to be desired. There was that visible "oh great...more people" air to the gal as we walked in and it didn't make this seemingly fun place feel very fun. I would have walked out of there with nothing if their port hadn't been to die for. It was funny how one of the places reviewed to be one of the most fun wineries in the area was one of the least fun for us.

Final evening hoping to catch the sunset...showing off my cute feet!
Pretty flower that caught my attention as we were waiting. Yes, I know...easily distracted.
Ohhh, look at the waves!
I love these beach pictures...I can't ever imagining living far away from the ocean. I have lived near water my whole life! And even when I go on's usually to some beach destination or tropical place. I had a lot of fun staying so close to the water and listening to the air, wind, water and birds. It was relaxing. Besides the photos above, some of the top sites of my trip were the Taste of the Valley tasting room in Solvang. The guys working there were very fun, friendly and gracious. They had some wonderful wine available to taste and it was VERY difficult to decide what bottles to take home with me...and try to limit myself!! I would definitely go back to socialize with the pourers here as they set the experience. Thanks Eric and Phil!
I absolutely fell in love with every wine at Opolo Winery! It's a good thing we headed back to try this place as we had to rush to make our lunch reservation and had to initially skip over Opolo. We had to retrace our steps to go back here after lunch...good thing we did. I had such a hard time deciding here as well, and so I became a wine club member!! was that good. Plus, the pourers here were wonderful. They made an effort to draw out conversation and were so friendly. They gave you samples of sausage and chocolates to try with their various wines. I walked out of there with their Voignier, Sangiovese, Cabernet and Late Harvest Zinfindel. I'm having wonderful dreams about that Late Harvest...omg, so yummy! Can't wait to treat myself with opening that bottle one day. Anne, our pourer, was a total doll and made me an Opolo fan! I can't wait to get my shipment in the Fall considering I took my summer shipment home with me! =)
And our last winery stop was a ton of fun and a complete surprise. We stopped at Tobin James before heading home and talk about a party winery! They have three wine bars in the establishment and each has at least 20 people at each! It was funny to see bikers and their babes wine tasting too. The pourers here were extra friendly and made a tremendous effort trying to find a nice wine for our "doesn't drink a lot" friend, Claire.
And last but not least, I was told to go to the Old West Cinnamon Roll place in Pismo Beach. I love sweets as do my friends so it wasn't hard to convince them to go try this place with me. The cinnamon rolls were great! I ordered an original with cream cheese icing and it was yummy!
So SLO-town trip = lots of fun!

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