About a year ago, I wrote about Barry Jackson’s Cioppino Rosso, a blend of different wines that winemaker Jackson laughingly calls Cioppino because he “throws all the leftovers in a pot.” He’s referring, of course, to his vivacious blend of several wines—just as the cioppino fish stew is a mixture of fish and shellfish thrown into a pot.
Now, on a somewhat more serious note, it’s time to write about Jackson’s Grenache. A majority of Grenache grapes (there is only 4 percent Syrah added), this wine has the typical enticing aromas of earth and stewed fruits.
And the good news is that this 2009 Grenache, Santa Clara Valley, Mann Vineyard, Gilroy, sells for only $15 a bottle – a bargain for such a lovely drinkable wine. It’s aged for 10 months in neutral barrels – and only 210 cases were produced, so it’s not going to be around forever. As it says on the label, “Enjoy the Wine. See the Enigma Revealed.”
Jackson, who, in case you didn’t know, is the winemaker of Equinox, a fine sparkling wine made in the methode champenoise style, also makes wines under his Bartolo label. You can find him every weekend at his tasting room on Swift Street, where he will happily serve you some samples of his fine wines.
Equinox, 427 Swift St., Unit C, Santa Cruz, 423-3000. equinoxwine.com.
Pelican Ranch Winery has left their tasting room on Ingalls Street and moved to a new location. Set to open up on Feb. 15, their home will be in a prime spot in Capitola in a brand new building. Winery owners Phil and Peggy Crews are excited about their move and having more space. “This new building has the potential to become a mini destination,” says Peggy Crews of Pelican Ranch. “We are looking forward to expanding our business.” They are the first tenants, but possibly a brewery and bakery will be setting up shop in the building as well.
Pelican Ranch Winery, 102 Kennedy Drive, Capitola, 426-6911. pelicanranchwinery.com.
Valentine’s Dinner by Jake Gandolfo Jake Gandolfo, of Fox TV’s MasterChef fame, will be cooking up a splendid Valentine’s dinner—featuring some wonderful wines—on Sunday, Feb. 13 at 6 p.m. in the Center Street Grill. Sign up by logging on to sundaysuppersessions.eventbrite.com. Gandolfo says the five-course menu will be “sultry, passionate and sexy” in an intimate setting of not more than 50 guests. Cost: $40, exclusive of tax and tip. For more information e-mail Gandolfo at master[email protected]
Center Street Grill, 1001 Center St., Santa Cruz.