Posts Tagged With: wine

NaNoWriMo, a hundred mots of

…not much over 500 words, collecting pieces to submit and opinions on wine and wine life and travel, and then I see it, my truest of true truths in the pocket of aspiration: travel.  Moving.  That constant Newness I shared while talking about On The Road, that forever sequencing stream of stimuli that gives the character more of a story and more growth, breadth, believability as an Artist.

My next article, on living in wine country and realizing what the magnet truly is, what pulls people here and makes it difficult to detach, what makes them believe it’s more for them that where they live.  I’ve even heard New Yorkers, the most proud of state people that I’ve ever studied and met, say phrases to the shape of “Okay that’s it, we’re moving.”…

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NaNoWriMo (excerpt/standalone article)


And why wine.. for the narrative, for the story, for the love and life of her.  Across varietals, wines should be described as character and story, story in character and characters in a multitude of stories.  Like the blend I sipped last night, one I made in 2012 with a buddy, and now I’m here three years later still learning and evermore appreciative of the Roman-like presence of wine in the world’s collective and individualized momentums.  Wine’s its own scholar, its own study, and I don’t want to be anything more than a student, ever-learning and ever-growing with the ebb of innovation, from the Earth to winemaking approaches and methodologies–  Wine provides the writer an escape and a tally of rewarding inner-storms.

Stopping in my typed mayhem, I remember the first day working behind a bar, pouring wine for guests coming from everywhere it seemed in the world just to be at that counter, at that moment, to taste those wines.  That’s always provoked me to get closer to wine’s epicenter and intrinsic palatable parcels.  Wine is always inviting the lover and curious sipper to get closer.  It doesn’t exclude, it doesn’t judge, and I don’t think it very much wants to BE judged.  Just enjoyed.  Yes, I know, wine judgings and competitions, scorings, publications, blogs like this one.. I get it.  But at its most principal of principles, wine wants communication; the occasion.  That vie, cet amour.

When I drive from my home in Santa Rosa and east on 12, I’m reminded, that it’s everywhere, this story, and I need to commit to the story.  The story, wine’s narrative and cascade of short imagist disclosures, has done its part, very much, in fact ten times over and over; Repeated again from pure civil urgency, an exhausting kindness.  So I need to answer and keep driving, to Sonoma, over to Napa, stop in Calistoga in some tasting room I’ve never been in and taste, and keep tasting, write what I feel and capture the moment and know intimately this ‘why’…  Why I’m here, why wine wants me here, and why I want wine to want me here writing about her.

My notes from last night, on my own winemaking effort, reading them this morning after a rushed-sip sequence of coffee, teaches me to move slower with her, that she need to be listened to, not string-pulled, not steered, just let to speak.  My notes read like some cookie-cutter tasting room menu, “Wild Cherry, Chocolate, slight cinnamon, milky texture.” ‘What the hell’, I say to myself.  Wine deserves much more than that.  She needs MORE than ‘more than that’.  She needs time, measure, attention and always a more wanton writing than I last night gave.  She gave me a story, chapters and dialogue, images, and she knows I’m not the most wild plot enthusiast, so she lets me decide that.  She’s kind.  I need to be more a mirror, and reflect what’s on the other side, in that vineyard over there off Adobe Canyon Road, and over there off 29.  Everywhere and everything.  For her, me.

Wine, writing…  “Wine,” I call to her, “I’m still writing.”

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

50 words from novel–

…my sister, and being around her tonight and seeing her outside the crush pad and away from the vineyard has me leaping to other others.  I see more with me and wine, and she’s proof, this young woman traveling and submitting wines and pouring at dinners, speaking about her creations.

There, the wine gone. 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NaNoWriMo, et le vin

I’m not in much mood to write.  Not that I had a bad day I merely want a night to be gelatinous, and slow, relaxed and thinking with this Boekenoogen Syrah, ’13.  The only thing missing, the idea I hoped for driving home, and driving back from the pizza place.  I’m seeing publishing, my publishing, the safest place in wine’s world and I write it all.

And I see it, my huge wine publishing.. thing.  Right now it’s just a thing, in my head.  Wine and politics, and needing wine to take the politics, especially that of a Ted Cruz, or Donald Trump, or even a corporately coded Hillary Clinton.  The Syrah has saved, and safe in my wine zone with its gothic color, its brooding wave and voluptuous flavor lobes.  This wine is the wine type that has me in my new character and place, form and fold.  So I sip my wine and don’t think about it much, and why should I in this mood and after today watching so many people drink their wine with no cares and laughing at my descriptions (not all, but a small few did, which was enough to unnerve this already-edgy adjunct)–  And I’m a mess with this night and this semester, ending Week 14, to Week 15, then to end.  I’m just going to enjoy my thoughts, not slowing and only speeding toward dreams, the pours and the empty bottles, counting them with those markers and walking them to the recycling canister.  Need another glass.  Then bed.  There is a quit.  At some point.

Categories: artist's notes ..., Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

MOCK SOMM:  Gundlach Bundschu Reaction; Sustainable Farming Boons

IMG_9604 Sipping some of the Merlot I bought yesterday at Gundlach Bundschu, the ’12, and I can see why so many are behind sustainable farming, and the stark and boldly beaming evidence that it translates to an increasingly truthful, more site and vintage representative wine.  The fruit is more rounded and robust, engaging and elemental in its palate gallop than other Merlots you’d pull from a store shelf, or even find at esteemed wineries in any valley.  And the Chardonnay I opened last night had a similar momentum, holistic and embracing in its flavor modes and moods, and a storyteller unto itself; naturalist and natural in its voicing.  A relief for a wine consumer like me, finding something forthright, a winery that respects its vineyards and the environments and enabling a candid couriering of terroir as other wineries merely aspire to.


As I now tilt the class toward my senses, it yields a riveting richness that you can only experience, I believe, from wineries that farm sustainably.  ‘Gun Bun’ as it’s amiably monikered, has been certified by Fish Friendly Farming since ’12, and you can appreciate and actuate in their adoration for the environment by tasting their wines, as I did yesterday after my draining workday, stopping in somewhat randomly (and I say ‘somewhat’ as I was thinking while earlier IMG_9605prepping for the day, “I should stop at Gun Bun’, haven’t tasted their in years), hosted by Ms. Danielle, a sweetly soft octave’d young woman whose familiarity and oeno-prowess was visible but not bragged.  Which I enjoyed.  Nothing more irking that being hosted by someone who tactlessly aims to perform what they think they know.  Nothing like that from Danielle.  And each wine, composed and coherent, convincing and wildly indicative of meticulous nearness from the farming and winemaking brigades.

IMG_9614Just a little bit of the Merlot left in glass, and I’m annoyed with self that I sipped it so swiftly, but I couldn’t help that self, and what can I do but follow the wine, wines like this, of this elevated character and deific loop.  My thoughts triangulate taking the next sip.  Showing me the rows, the temperatures and amalgamated atmosphere of 2012– This wine teaches from its acutely touched rows, and I sit here at the end of my day and sip, envision what happened that year on their property, and know I have to go back for a few more bottles.  Wish I could sip some more but this is all the warrant I need to put more on the shelves of my quasi-”cellar”.  Enough for me to get more than enough.  I think 6 bottles, then a case, then I don’t know what I’m thinking only I know I want more and I will get more, sooner than soon.  And who authors this entry, the Merlot.  So I’m sent to go.

And it’s more than clear, the sustainable treatment and relationship with IMG_9607vineyards bridges to a more appealing cluster.  The other wines I sipped in my quick visit, such as the Gerwurtztraminer, Rosé of Tempranillo, the Tempranillo, Pinot, and all the others Danielle politely place in the bowl cemented the validity and visibility of sustainable farming’s bounty.

Categories: MOCK SOMM, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NaNoWriMo, more

…laptop next to bed in case I woke at some ungodly early hour, then I could write.  But no.  My body insisted I get the sleep.

Hear a train, THE train, passing outside.  Travel.. travel, I think to myself sipping more of the Ale than the mocha.  Everywhere now screams Autumn; from the vineyards and their leaves to the way the wind pushes the leaves from trees and vineyards from one side of the street to the other.  In Napa today it was especially encouraging for the writer, this adjunct who today does nothing associated with his bloody adjunct role.  Solano re-scheduled to evaluate me after I learned the delightful secretary or clerk who always finds a way to infuse some commentary rude when we speak failed to put my 11/5 observation on the dean’s calendar.  12/3 he’s supposed to drop by.  Twelve days before the semester’s to end.  Such a bloody joke, I swear…

Behind in the progress I have set for this wine-wound novel I’m writing– no surprise, adjunct in the adjunct world for nearly ten years has always flirted with wine’s industry, even taking jobs but being let go from a few of them, only now seeing an entrepreneurial approach, selling wines by writing and blogging about them.  Obvious, yes, but I have to try.  And now, to be honest, I am in the mood for wine.  But I’m going to sip a bit more of this mocha so it’s not a total money disposal–  And on such note, spent just under $12 yesterday, all day.  More than tripled that today, but oh well, it’s another day off for the adjunct.

Essays.. I start writing politically charged responses and opinions, mainly geared and shifted toward the reaction of politicians on both sides concerning the Syrian refugees.  Ted Cruz, one of the presidential hopefuls for the Republican trough–‘hopeful’ very much being an intentional word in more than a dozen ways–decries any empathy or concern for these exhausted and frightened peoples from the cataclysmically parceled country.  And then, you have President Obama and many democrats who appear to not exercise enough caution, adhering to those American principles of the promised land and ‘people come here to escape danger, find freedom, establish themselves’.  No other time in America, that I can remember, has a middle-ground on a national security/immigration matter been more necessitated.  If we knee-jerk, react with too much dismissal, and distrust, then we’re viewed as cruel.  But then, if we blindly open the doors and have no system, or even a moderately practical system in place, we put danger in our place, potentially harming our country.

I begin another essay, 502 words, on Donald Trump, and what a laugh he is, more than he’s ever been.  He’s a celebrity, for what.  Money.  And now he’s a potential political figure, the leader of the country that embodies and boasts freedom like no other?  This same stooge suggesting we give all Muslims in the country IDs, much like the Jewish population during Hitler’s short-lived Reich.

My desk soon becomes littered with printed pages, pieces I fancy submitting but not before realizing I’m better off publishing it myself.

The mocha’s disgusting.  Could use a beer.

Fine.  But I’m not wasting the Ginger Ale.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NaNoWriMo & Merlot

Well, I wound up buying three, a Chard a Cuvée a Merlot.  And the Merlot’s what now I sip.  And what I think… well, was going to do another MOCK SOMM post to blog or write some article how this is an example of the benefits to sustainable farming, but no.  I fly directly t my novel and keep writing till the dryer upstairs stops.  This Merlot’s darker than most, with more charcoal and smoke insinuation than others I’ve tried.. and the fruit, unspeakably immediate and believable in all its circlings and savory speech.  I imagine myself giving talks on Merlot and why it should be loved, and how so many times even before that movie it was expected to be weak, to be dismissive and hindered by its lightness.  I need travel more than ever, I see.  And how I see the road, the remedy, frankly, focus on this tie between wine and writing, Literature and the stories you see in wine.  If I had my wishes pocketed, right now I’d be in Florida, on a high floor staring down at some beach sipping a light red, Pinot more than likely, and scribbling in the journal Mom and Dad bought me.  No formal writing like I’m now doing for the novel, and no new typings of any sort.  Just a sip, then a scribble, then another sip and another.  And at night, light gusts only to remind me I’m finally on the Road and the air is different here, this is the difference I’ve sought.  I’d finish my wine and odd scribblings and walk the beach, thinking of poems and paragraphs for the next novel, how I should finally write that novel about the grad student, 23 and in grad school for Math, working at an Insurance Agency, selling, and just wanting to photograph things, people, traffic, even the garbage that people dispel to roadside, capture everything.  He even wants to travel and shoot in war zones, get the pictures that no one else will to tell some kind of truth–  Then I start thinking, I want to be him, I want to be this character I haven’t even written yet.  The wine tonight is very much working as I wished it to.  And, Merlot, no shock, the varietal that brought me into wine’s story in some serious strand.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

MOCK SOMM: Quick Sips

Stephen & Walker, 2013 Oak Knoll Cabernet Sauvignon —

IMG_9538Inveigling quality from start of sip to summation; one of those Cabs that makes you stop and reconsider your position on Cabernet even if you think yourself a ‘Cab person’.  Celestially structured fruit at its epicenter with atmospheric acidity and texture.  Easily age-worthy, but quite communicative now.  Indeed a new translation of Cabernet but a wine, standalone, that sings a song demanding attention with every parcel of its personhood.  When poured by Mary in the S&W tasting room, I had a hard time interpreting this bottle as its voice and consistency was so much better structured than most if not all the Cabs I’ve recently tasted.  (MM93)

Landmark Vineyards, 2013 Carneros Chardonnay —

Another Chardonnay that orders me and makes me shut my mouth.  No IMG_9518more defamations.  Everything from the apple and pair suggestion that I hope for and the comforting acidic envelopment.. love, just Burgundy love.  It’s a cosmic accost, a wine that challenges you and silences you if have that Chard’ aversion that so many claim to have.  And I’m one of them, or was.  Not with this bottle.  Believable, non-contrived, convincing and coated in charisma, from nose to palate and finish…  You’ll search for Chardonnays of this fold, but such effort’s imbued in implausibility.  They’re not there.  This bottle boasts distinction and dimension; deliciously dualistic.  (MM94)

Sanglier Cellars, 2012 Alexander Valley Merlot —

IMG_9581Confrontationally wooing with is vocal gravity, how it evades criticism and any fashionable dismissal of Merlot.  You’re greeted with depth and versatility, dark fruit and gothic texture to this interpretation of the embattled Bordeaux type– but this wine won’t let you stop sipping, nor will it allow that banishment.  There’s composition in what you sip here; coherence and a theatric savoriness that’s unusual for Merlot.  There’s no warrant for hesitation here, and no call for any stereotyping.  This bottle continues narratively in its development and kindness, with flavor flashes repeating and subduing any Merlot stubbornness.  Rather, while tasting your thoughts dance, calypso, salsa, tango.. you’ll change.  (MM93)

Categories: MOCK SOMM | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

more NaNoWriMo… (no edits)

Back at Vine Street, before going into tasting room.  And the assignment’s been submitted.  I think I may finally be rid of it.  And them, the growers.  So now, I focus on me, the Me I have to be in wine and as a writer.  Today as I said I’ll be on a hunter for dialogue, writing as much down as I can.. currently with no earphones so I can hear what people order and the conversations they hold but unfortunately I can’t hear much as the foaming and coffee and all other machines behind that bar obstruct.  “Goddamnnit,” I think, “don’t they know I’m trying to write either a novel or series of sketches?” Indeed I’m a selfish writer and professor, teaching the students the best way I think but who knows.  Well, I know, I think.  Brought a copy of Hemingway’s ‘Sun Also Rises’, left in the car as I wanted a moment or two to collect and meditate before a day of pouring.  Not sure how busy it’ll be, cold outside and the holiday’s approaching, didn’t seem Friday like many people were in town, many tourists anyway.  So what to do but walk around taste the wines make notes and be as crazy and poetic and different with wording as I can.  I guess that’s my brand, this wine writer form the Literary and academic world as non-academic but more a writer and speaker, sharer of ideas.. even with how some pourers disclose the blend breakdown, why? I have to ask.  Let the visitor experience the wine and add when asked, or necessary.  I see my wine story compiling and becoming more narrative, and more riddles in question, sweet inquiry, like “What wines am I going to taste today?” Or, “I wonder what this Zin’s like?” And that’s healthy, a Socratic and humble, humanist exploration of wine, and its words, what it narrates to me a narrative writer and page producer.

11:41.. should go to bank and deposit check.. get some cash, pay back the stash, what I’ve been taking these last few days before getting paid from JC and client.  The end vision, what will be brought to fruition: the label, the wines I make, how I speak about them and write them, and ask people what the wine is saying, and to perhaps try writing it.. had idea yesterday:

ITEM – Online courses on writing, wine writing, more onus-driven reading…

Not sure where to start, but I know how to share ideas in an educational context and I have my subject matter set.. so maybe now I develop, draw more, put it out there and see what courses draw in the way of clientele.. hmmm……..

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NaNoWriMo (no edits)

…on giant corduroy beanbag on the first floor will Joyce upstairs naps.  I should be working on my growers assignment, deadline tomorrow at first morrow, but I’m deciding to write freely, play with wine illuminations and deconstructions, words and rhymes and poetic flyings of reacting to wine– “palate peril… song’d stretch..” among others, just writing like I did with those poems if you could call them that.  And I think, gather poems and wine sketches and odd writings, outside the blog, and bind them, sell them, have and be my own merchandise.  That would fill these income gaps, being paid once a month as an adjunct, then the microchecks from the winery.  Enjoying my day in words, opening the Comp Book to a blank page, just noting and writing, scribbling and drawing or doodling around the words like that one student from English 5, Fall ’13 at the Petaluma Campus.  Never forgot that, how she made the journal her own and noted how she felt aught.

Week 13.  So what.  I’m done, as I said, done done–  Not getting overzealous in my attitude I hope, but I’m lazy now, sinking into this bag, looking outside and the sky tries to rain but doesn’t, then the patch over the fence outside, the thinning gray with a small lenticular black arm is pulled, exposing blue.  Sunny, that Fall day where the air becomes even more savory than it was just ten minutes back. 

I hear James wake, upstairs, but he doesn’t come downstairs as he usually does.  He talks to something imaginary, possibly the stuffed animals I put in their for them, and some provided by Jim.  I go close to the stairs so there’s more shot to ear but not too close to alert him to my proximity.  I write in the Comp, “converted, conversation…

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blog at The Adventure Journal Theme.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,067 other followers