If you missed it, you missed it.
What was “it”?
“It” was the inaugural Masters of Taste held on April 3rd at the Rose Bowl. Actually, in the Rose Bowl – on the football field!
For the first time for many like me who did not participate in college football, cheerleading or marching bands got to actually go down to the Rose Bowl field and get a “player’s eye view” while munching and drinking a variety of superb consumables, all for the benefit of Union Station Homeless Services.
So much great food and drink. You can check out the complete list of participants on the website.
Some of the highlights for me…
I hadn’t seen Brendan Collins or Carolos Tomazos since they had closed Waterloo & City and gone their separate ways. It was great to see them both and taste Brendan’s chicken liver mousse from Birch and Carolos’ spicy lamb meatball from Inotheke.
Also loved the beef cheek from Hyde, the sliders from Hache LA, the pork belly from BierBeisl and Redbird’s gnudi.
While Eve focused a lot on cocktails [read her article in the Beacon], I tasted primarily wine and a little beer.
Ascension Cellars, based in Paso Robles, produces an ever-improving line of primarily Rhone based wines. Loved the 2015 Siren GSM Rose on this warm day and the 2013 Mayhem Syrah was simply outstanding.
Alosta Brewing Co. makes beer in Covina. The Saison, with ginger and sage, was really refreshing and I can still taste the delicious oatmeal stout.
Anglim Winery – I’ve known the Anglims for several years and have always felt they made solid wines. Their ZSM blend of Zinfandel, Syrah and Mourvedre was excellent and I am looking forward to tasting more of their wines soon.
Four Brix Winery makes their wine in Ventura. My favorite of theirs today was the Temptress blend of Tempranillo, Grenache and Mourvedre, all from Paso Robles grapes.
Spin The Bottle Wine Studio in Toluca Lake was pouring a variety of samples. I really liked the Rose they had from Morocco[!].
Van Ruiten Family Winery had been in Lodi for a long time. Nice to taste some Lodi zin at this event.
Vinemark Cellars – Mark Wasserman’s wines keep racking up the medals. My faves today were the Cabernet Franc and Petite Sirah.
Plenty more that I didn’t get to.
It couldn’t have been a better day. When it threatened to be a little too warm, a cooling afternoon breeze set in. In addition, the layout of the event with the tasting booths circling the field allowed for plenty of seating at tables on the field. And the VIP attendees not only started an hour early but had access to seating in VIP lounges as well as complimentary massages – I keep telling you guys, go VIP when you can; it is almost always worth it.
In spite of all of the above, I could swear that some guys thought that the best part was posing as quarterbacks on the Rose Bowl field while whoever they were with took a picture.
But as I said, if you missed it, you missed it. But don’t despair. Based on the great job done by all the participants and the great time had by the attendees this event should be back next year – I expect even bigger and better. I am looking forward to it.
Michael Perlis has been pursuing his passion for wine for more than 25 years. He has had the good fortune of having numerous mentors to show him the way, as well as a wonderful wife who encourages him and shares his interest. After a couple of decades of learning about wine, attending events, visiting wineries and vineyards, and tasting as much wine as he possibly could, he had the amazing luck to meet Eve Bushman. Now, as Contributing Editor for Eve’s Wine 101, he does his best to bring as much information as possible about wine to Eve’s Wine 101 faithful readers. Michael is also Vice President of Eve Bushman Consulting (fka Eve’s Wine 101 Consulting) http://evebushmanconsulting.com/ and President of MCP Financial. Michael can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com