Annette and David Hunt, who used to own Roudon-Smith Winery, have made a sweeping change and formed a new venture by opening up Skov Winery. Fortunately, they are still in the same bucolic spot down Bean Creek Road in Scotts Valley, and have the same expert winemaker Brandon Armitage. And judging from the impressive turnout at their grand opening last month, it looks like they are off to a cracking start.
Skov, which means “forest” in Danish, reflects on the Danish heritage of Annette, but it’s also a very appropriate name for their winery as it’s located smack in the middle of a dense population of mighty redwoods.
And from the simplicity of their elegant new label—depicting three tall trees, no less—and their connection to the community, the Hunts’ winery is sure to become a hot new wine destination.
Tasting all the Skov wines on opening day, we loved the 2008 Zinfandel, Santa Cruz Mountains. With its mocha-lavender bouquet, this very fruit-forward wine has a wonderful spicy, jammy finish—and it’s very reasonably priced at $20. It was perfect that day with all the meats and cheeses laid out for the opening celebration.
Skov Winery, 2364 Bean Creek Road, Scotts Valley, 438-4374. SkovWinery.com.
Rivers of Chocolate Festival: If you love chocolate and you love wine (and who doesn’t), then this is the event for you. Entitled “A Fantasy for Your Palate” this 14th annual extravaganza promises to be better than ever. Held at the beautiful Mountain Winery in Saratoga, this spectacular feast includes chocolate tasting, hors d’oeuvres, wine tasting, silent and live auctions and live music. Date: Sunday, May 1 from 12:30-5 p.m. Info: riversofchocolate.org.
El Jardin Restaurant
El Jardin is now doing Wine Down Wednesdays, when all their listed wines are 50 percent off. For $8 you get a flight of three wines and complimentary appetizers. And Monday to Friday Happy Hour the restaurant’s appetizers are half price from 3-6:30 p.m. Keep an eye out for their upcoming tequila tastings.
El Jardin Restaurant, 655 Capitola Road, Santa Cruz, 477-9384. eljardinrestaurants.com.
Farm Girls School of Food & Wine
The cheery cheese diva Tabitha Stroup of You Have a Friend in Cheeses, and wicked wino Amanda Rehn are doing a wine series every Wednesday in May from 6:30-8 p.m. at Vinocruz on Front Street, and the focus is on the Santa Cruz Mountains. With these two ladies at the helm serving up food and libation, this promises to be four evenings of fabulous fun. Cost: $120 for the series. For info and to sign up: FriendinCheeses.com.