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Casa Dumetz: Wines That Tell a Story

Casa Dumetz: Wines That Tell a Story


Posted on May 25, 2016

Casa Dumetz winesOne of the first things that become apparent when you meet winemaker Sonja Magdevski is her insatiable curiosity. It is this inquisitiveness that brought her into the wine industry and the same eagerness and passion that is put into the wine at Casa Dumetz.

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Located along the Foxen Canyon Wine Trail in the Santa Maria Valley AVA, just north of Santa Barbara, sits the beautiful vineyards and tasting room of Cambria Estate Winery. Just 15 miles from the Pacific Ocean, at the northern end of the Foxen Canyon, this is cool climate country and ideal for planting Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

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When we first wrote about the McMenamin brothers and their historic hotels throughout Oregon & Washington State, we were hopeful that the rumours of them opening a hotel in Bothell, Washington were true. If you’ve never heard of Bothell, it’s a 20 minute drive north of downtown Seattle, and also happens to sit right next door to Woodinville, home to many of Washington’s best winery tasting rooms. As a result of the growing demand for Washington wine, there is also a great need in the area for decent accommodation to support its burgeoning popularity.

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Santa Barbara Wine country

We often get asked to make winery recommendations to friends or clients visiting various wine country regions throughout the Pacific Northwest. One of the first things we try and find out is whether the person going is looking for the best wine they can find in the area, or are more interested in a destination winery where they can sit and enjoy a glass of wine with a view. Once in a while you find a combination of both that really stand out: Daou Vineyards in Paso Robles, Soter Vineyards in the Willamette Valley and St. Francis Vineyards in Sonoma certainly come to mind. On a recent trip to Santa Barbara’s wine country we added Sunstone Vineyards and Winery to that list.

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SBwinecountrySanta Barbara County is the southern half of California’s Central Coast wine region. It takes in almost 10,000 km2 moving north from Santa Barbara to Santa Maria and then inland from there. It combines stunning beauty, from gorgeous coastlines to beautiful interior rolling hills. And as we recently discovered, it is making some outstanding wines at very fair prices.

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Santa Barbara: The American Riviera

Santa Barbara: The American Riviera


Posted on Apr 19, 2016

SBpalmtreesJust an hour and a half’s drive from Los Angeles, Santa Barbara encompasses a delightful span of California’s central coast that is surprisingly underdeveloped particularly given its location and what it offers visitors: beautiful beaches lined with palm trees, fantastic restaurants, and easy access to a truly unique wine region producing world-class wines.

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Tableau Bar BistroTableau, the restaurant at the Loden Hotel in downtown Vancouver, is the latest offshoot of the uber-successful Homer Street Café. Serving classically prepared French bistro cuisine with a modern twist, it is all you could ask for in a dining experience: delicious food, friendly, helpful servers, cool ambience and scene, and fair prices.

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VineyardIron Horse Vineyards is the love and labour of Californians Audrey and Barry Sterling. In 1976 they drove along the one lane road just outside of the town of Occidental in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County, through the fog and misty rain to find this beautiful vineyard, which they bought, pretty much on the spot. The location is beautiful, often shrouded by the fog that gets held by its rolling hills, and is very remote. Almost 30 years later to the day, we drove along that same road, in similar weather conditions to find their beautiful property and taste their exquisite wines.

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