The Hidden California

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Thursdays:  February 11, 18, 25  |  7:30pm-8:30pm (via Zoom)

It’s human nature to want things we can’t have, or things which are rare. With wine it’s no different. Maybe it’s that bottle you had in Tuscany, made by a producer who does not import to the U.S., or a wine you read about, made by a small group of nuns in Campania, but they only produce 80 cases a year. I get it, as I, too, covet and wonder about such bottles. Thing is, rarity alone doesn’t make something good. It just means there isn’t much of it. But it’s also true that some of the most intriguing wines are those which are made in small lots, crafted with care, by hand, and with love. (sooo cheesy, but I couldn’t come up with another word) 

Those are the wines we’ll taste in this special seminar all about California.  Most will be small lots of limited-production wines, yes, but they must also be delicious, and provide a window into what makes the Golden State so special.  We may taste a wine from Napa or Sonoma, but lesser known sites are more likely to make the cut.  El Dorado County comes to mind, as does Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, or bottles from Tehama County, one of California's most northerly AVA's.

We’ll meet three times, tasting a pair of whites in the first class, followed by red wines in the second and third classes. And while some will be big and bold (California’s forte), others will be delicate and pretty, lithe and supple. In other words, something for everyone, but far from ordinary. 


Zoom Details
  • We will meet for three sessions, with each session covering two wines, and lasting for around one hour.  The $45 registration fee covers ALL three sessions.
  • All sessions are recorded, allowing you to view them again later, or to watch any sessions you might miss.
  • A few weeks before the first class, we will email you the Zoom links, as well as detailed notes with cheese pairing suggestions, recommendations on when to open the wines, and much more.
  • Class reservations can always be rescheduled up until the start of the first class.

Wine Details 

As our retail partner, we work with Flatiron Wines & Spirits for most of our classes.  This event, however, requires extra horsepower, so we've teamed up with Bottle Barn, a true juggernaut in the world of wine retail for all things California (and beyond).

To order the accompanying wines, please click here to order the class-pack.  So many wines you just do not see outside of the state.  If you want to experience what's new and interesting on the west coast, this event is a must.

The Upside Of Zoom

As long as Covid remains in wide circulation, our classes will be held online, via Zoom.  And while we miss meeting people in real life, there are many upsides to virtual classes.  These include, but are not limited to:

  • Rather than meeting once, we’ll meet three times. This allows more time to absorb information, let it sink in, think of questions, then ask those questions.  You’ll be a pro in no time!
  • Teaching wine requires the use of words, but pictures are equally important. With Zoom, you can expect graphs, maps, and lots of pretty pictures.
  • We welcome questions and input during class, but if you’re shy, or have questions you’re afraid to ask, simply type into the chat bar and we’ll get you some answers.
  • You can see us, and we’d like to see you, but if you’d rather be incognito, or do your best learning in your pajamas, you can always turn your camera off.
  • When I teach in person, I often poll students for their preferences and opinions, and will ask for a show of hands. But sometimes, people are tepid to respond, or they vote after watching how other people vote.  It’s human nature, of course, but with polling on Zoom, no reason to hold back.  If you love the wine, flash the heart emojis.  Or, if it was worst wine you’ve ever had, we want to know!
  • You’ll have tons of leftover wine to drink. In class, you’ll taste a couple ounces of each wine, but each bottle has 25.4 ounces.  That leaves a lot of ounces for after hours consumption.
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