Vine & Dine

Clos LaChance Winery

Wine-GT1536Clos LaChance Viognier is right on the money

Founded by Bill and Brenda Murphy in 1992, Clos LaChance Winery is a wonderful place to visit. With stunning grounds and property, it’s not surprising that the place is busy all the time. And that was the case when we went out recently to do a tasting of their wines. We were there for so long that we had to buy cheese and crackers—from a selection of munchies available—to tide us over until we got back home for dinner.

One wine that I found particularly interesting is the 2014 Reserve Viognier ($22). Luscious aromas of peaches, apricots and honeysuckle pop right out in this full-bodied Viognier. With a richness that’s true to the varietal, the flavors of honeyed peaches and lemon rind linger on the palate. Viognier is definitely gaining popularity in the United States. A pale light straw in color, this delicious white wine is very drinkable. Due to its high alcohol and low acid, it’s a bit difficult to pair with food, but the winery suggests pairing this one with “seafood, fruit salad and cream sauces.”

It’s also lovely just sipped on its own, and comes with a screw cap, so it couldn’t be easier to open.

Clos LaChance Winery, 1 Hummingbird Lane, San Martin, 408-686-1050 or 1-800-ITS-WINE.

Artisan Food Market

The next Artisan Food Market at the ever-evolving Food Lounge is 3-7:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 11. Dubbed Farmers Market meets Cocktail Hour, this free-admission event will have food, bar and beverages, tastings, samples, and more. Santa Cruz Food Lounge, 1001 Center St., Santa Cruz. Visit for more info.

Ag Against Hunger

Head to Twisted Roots for a wine tasting, small bites and a paella cooking demonstration with Chef Brandon Miller of Mundaka Restaurant in Carmel, and support ending hunger at the Second Annual Fundraiser for Ag Against Hunger. 5:30-7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 24. Info at

Gourmet Grazing

The 12th annual Gourmet Grazing on the Green cancer benefit takes place in Aptos Village Park from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 19. Organized by the Santa Cruz Cancer Benefit Group, this fabulous food and wine festival is an opportunity to sample some of our best restaurants, wineries and breweries in an afternoon of organically themed “gourmet grazing.”

Tickets are $70 each or $600 for a group of 10. Purchase tickets online at

WINE AL FRESCO The breathtaking grounds of Clos LaChance Winery in San Martin. PHOTO: COURTESY OF CLOS LACHANCE

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