(I will be interviewing Silberkleit when he’s here, so look for my follow up story next.)
4 Bristol Farms markets will host appearances
Sonoma, CA , Summer 2010—-Wine travel insider and publisher Tom Silberkleit will make appearances at four Bristol Farms locations August 12 – 15 in southern California . Silberkleit is the publisher of The California Directory of Fine Wineries, Northern Region Edition: Napa-Sonoma-Mendocino, now in its fourth edition (written by Marty Olmstead, photography by Robert Holmes, 160 pages, ISBN- ISBN-13: 978-0972499347, $19.95) and The California Directory of Fine Wineries, Central Coast Edition: Santa Barbara-San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles, first edition (written by K. Reka Badger and Cheryl Crabtree, photography by Robert Holmes, 144 pages, ISBN- ISBN-13: 978-0972499309, $19.95).
The public is invited to meet Silberkleit, buy the book (which he can inscribe on the spot) and also enjoy a taste of wine from wineries featured in the books.
Thursday, Aug 12 – 5 to 8 p.m.
Bristol Farms – Newport Beach , 810 Avocado Ave. , Newport Beach (92660), 949/760-6514
Wines to be poured from Hitching Post.
Friday Aug. 13 – 4 to 7 p.m.
Bristol Farms – Manhattan Beach , 1570 Rosecrans Ave. , Manhattan Beach (90266), 310/643-5229
Wines to be poured from Silver Oak and Zaca Mesa .
Saturday, Aug 14 – Noon to 3 p.m.
Bristol Farms – Long Beach, 2080 N. Bellflower Blvd., Long Beach (90815), 562/ 430-4134
Wines to be poured from Matanzas Creek and Wild Horse.
Sunday, Aug 15 – Noon to 3 p.m.
Bristol Farms – Beverly Hills/West Hollywood (Beverly West), 9039 Beverly Blvd. , West Hollywood (90048), 310/ 248-2804
Wines to be poured from Ramey Wine Cellars.
A twenty-five-year resident of California ’s Napa/Sonoma wine region, Silberkleit is taking his show on the road to infuse Southern California residents with his fever for touring the grand estates, salons, and tasting rooms of what he considers to be California ’s best wine regions.
Using The California Directory of Fine Wineries (fourth edition) and The California Directory of Fine Wineries, Central Coast Edition, Silberkleit assembled “Ten Amazing Things You Never Knew About California’s Destination Wineries:”
1) What California winery can boast 100-year-old wine caves hand-chiseled in the 19th Century?
Answer: Beringer Vineyards
2) Which Napa Valley winery does a former president of Disney Studios own?
Answer: Frank Family Vineyards
3) Whose hillside vineyards in Napa Valley are planted atop a dormant 4-million-year-old volcano?
Answer: Hartwell Vineyards
4) Can you name the Napa winery that features a world-class museum of international modern art that is open to the public?
Answer: The Hess Collection
5) At which Santa Barbara County winery will you find visitors playing chess outdoors on a gigantic wooden board with life-size pieces?
Answer: Zaca Mesa Winery & Vineyards
6) What now-famous Solvang steakhouse, featured in the Academy Award-winning movie Sideways, offers guests the chance to taste their wines inside their restaurant where the movie was filmed?
Answer: Hitching Post
7) What off-the-beaten track winery, located in the wilds of Santa Maria , has created a hummingbird sanctuary within their estate garden?
Answer: Kenneth Volk Vineyards
8) A collection of expertly handcrafted models of California ’s Spanish missions, originally created for the 1939 World’s Fair, is now on permanent display at what beautiful Sonoma winery?
Answer: Cline Cellars
9) At which iconic Paso Robles winery will you meet Floyd the resident llama?
Answer: Wild Horse Winery
10) What Mendocino County winery is the oldest and largest all-organic winery in the U.S. ?
Answer: Frey Vineyards
“I’ve been to Bordeaux ,” Silberkleit rants with fire in his belly. “I’ve taken a leisurely canal boat through Burgundy and let me tell you—save the airfare; don’t take the hit buying Euros. The great wines are here in your backyard. Jump in the car; explore. Take a wine country holiday. Splurge at a pleasant hotel, enjoy the bounty of California ’s regional restaurants, and, above all, make sure to taste the unexpected. If you visit the right spots, you’ll have the time of your life and save big money!”
According to The Wine Institute, an advocacy and public policy group for the California wine industry, the number of wineries in the state is now just under 3,000. For most casual wine tasters the thought of selecting a handful of wineries to realistically visit within a limited day trip or overnight stay can seem overwhelming. For the past ten years, Silberkleit’s mission has been to do the on-site legwork so that he and his staff can cull a more manageable number of excellent choices for the weekend traveler.
When not producing his bestselling series of wine country travel books, Silberkleit is crisscrossing California wine regions, sipping as he goes in a relentless quest to discover wines worth sharing and tasting rooms worth visiting. “For me, the pursuit never ends,” he says. “New California wineries and tasting rooms are opening all the time. Some are breathtakingly beautiful for their architecture, award-winning gardens, or visitor amenities. Yes, many are absolutely worth visiting—but only if they’re making good wine. Life is too short to drink swill.”