Wine Tasting the Day Away

Hello friends!

It has been such a busy day — I arrived back in Chapel Hill last night around 12:30 a.m., fell into bed immediately, this morning at 9:30 a.m. had a Biostats exam, followed by other classes until 3:30, a quick trip to the grocery store, yoga, and dinner! And now, finally — I’m back :) The original plan was to finish this post last night and post it this morning… but my stupid laptop died on the plane before I could finish! Oh well :)

Here’s my official recap of one of the most fun days ever: playing in wine country on Sunday with Jenna, Tina, and Jenna’s boyfriend, Adam! :)


Our first stop was Dutton Estate Winery!




I really liked their wine — my favorite was the 2008 Vine Hill Chardonnay. It was SO smooth, oaky, and delicious. I wanted to buy some but was worried it would explode in my suitcase!



With warmth in our bellies (and Adam as our DD), we headed onwards: next stop — Hartford Family Winery!


This is where the majority of the awesome pictures in my last post were taken. It was so pretty!



We tasted a ton of delicious wines, but once again the Chardonnay (Stone Côte Chardonnay) was my favorite! I’m obsessed with California Chardonnay, apparently.



Remember the super cute jumping photo (in this post) of me, Tina, and Jenna in Philadelphia in June? We decided it’s become a tradition :)

094 096

Lol. Have I mentioned how much I heart these girls?


The last stop on our winery tour adventure was the famous Kendall Jackson itself! Adam is head of social media for KJ Wines, so we were excited to check it out :)


Beautiful! This reminded me of a picture in the “Southern Living” magazine my mom always has on our coffee table at home, haha.


By the way — it blew my mind that grape leaves change color for fall just like regular leaves! Who knew?! :)


Not only was Kendall Jackson gorgeous, but there was a wood burning oven outside for pizza. Heaven on earth, clearly.

118 109

We started with a brief tasting inside, including a taste of their not yet released Chardonnay — the 2009 Kendall-Jackson Avant!


When this comes out — buy it. SO GOOD.

And then — Tina and I were lucky enough to get our own special food and wine tastings from KJ’s Executive Chef himself, Justin Wangler!


Tina went for the cheese and wine pairing; me, the food and wine pairing :)



Quite the line-up!


First up was the 2009 Grand Reserve Sauvignon Blanc, paired with a shot glass full of pumpkin soup. Very seasonal and delicious!


Also on the plate? A Johnny Cake with Trout Roe and Sour Cream, to go with the second wine: 2007 Highland Estates Camelot Highlands Chardonnay. Yayyyy Chardonnay! ;)


Third on the tasting menu was a Buckwheat Crepe with Smoked Ham Hocks and Bellwether Farms Carmody Cheese, paired with a 2006 Highland Estates Seco Highlands Pinot Noir. Mmmm


And then — my latest obsession: PORK BELLY!! This was a Sweet Tea Brined Niman Ranch Pork Belly Slider with Syrah BBQ Sauce, paired with a 2006 Highlands Estates Alisos Hills Syrah:


Next up: a Korean Style Kobe Beef Lettuce Wrap with a 2005 Highland Estates Trace Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon.



And then came dessert!

Mama Frischkorn’s Caramel Corn, paired with a 2006 Late Harvest Chardonnay:


And Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Lees Caramel and Verjus Marinated Peaches, with a 2007 Late Harvest Riesling. Loved this!


Most amazing day ever! We were so spoiled to get to travel around with someone working in the wine industry :)

Did I mention there was even more awesome food for dinner?

146152 154

159 161



Everything in moderation, friends. Including moderation ;)


  1. 1

    What a great time of year to experience the wine country & it looks like y’all had a lot of fun. Perfect way to end the Foodbuzz Fest weekend.

  2. 2

    Hahaha I sometimes feel like I do moderation in moderation too. Love it.

  3. 3

    Wow, what a truly awesome time. So glad you were able to do it. Thanks for the wonderful report!

  4. 4

    snoop called. he said come back.

  5. 5

    Absolutely wonderful! :) Glad you made it home safe and had the most memorable trip. :)

  6. 6

    Wonderful post Anne. I am a wine lover also. I am partial to the red wines and I have a glass or two before I go to bed just about every night. It helps me sleep. I am one of those people that just never gets sleepy and I need a little help. (Just a little, now).

  7. 7

    All of you ladies’ pictures have been absolutely breathtaking. It sounds like such a great way to end the trip on a good note!!

  8. 8

    it’s so nice seeing someone just enjoy Chardonnay…it gets such a bad rap over here (in the UK), which I think is just snobbery and not based on actually trying the different kinds available…it makes me feel bad for the Chardonnay wines :(

    That pork belly looks delicious!

    – CJ

  9. 10

    Okay – There is WAY too much fun going on in these pictures but I’m happy that you have so many great people in your life. :-)

  10. 11

    I agree, California Chardonnay is amazing! So oaky and buttery. mmmm

  11. 12

    Looks like you had a lot of fun. I love how goofy you girls can be!

  12. 13

    The food from the wine tasting looks amazing! The soup reminds me of a squash soup that I enjoyed at a local food and wine show recently. I want to try that peaches and Riesling combo – love Rieslings!

  13. 14

    Beautiful photos…I love spending a day in Napa/Sonoma when I’m in SF. I’m sorry we didn’t get to meet (did we?) at the Festival. Next year.

  14. 15

    Wow, you had no downtime after getting home. I bet it was SO worth it though.

  15. 17

    I love this post! Especially the picture of you three jumping :) Looks like you had a blast!

  16. 18

    LOVE your grey jacket. and cute scarf :) you owned that look!

  17. 19

    How could you eat dinner after that food and wine tasting?! Looks amazing. So jealous :)

    • 20

      Haha we had a solid 2 hour break, and it was just tiny bites of everything at the tasting – the pics make the food look like it was bigger portions than it was!

  18. 21

    It looks like you had such an amazing time!! Makes me want to go to wine country asap. Great photos!!!

  19. 22

    Wow, everything looks DELCIOUS!! And how great is pork belly?? :) YUM!

  20. 23

    You girls are all so completely beautiful! Also, I really like your line about moderation. I think it might be my new motto. :)


  1. […] Spend a day in wine country with my girls Jenna and Tina before heading home […]

  2. […] us pick this out and it was seriously one of the best wines I’ve ever had. I feel like whenever I’m in California doing tastings, I always LOVE all their Chardonnays, but every time I order one out at a restaurant back home […]

  3. […] decide things like which pictures to print, haha), Matt and I decided to get the following picture (from my adventures in California wine country last November) blown up and […]

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.