Fortino Winery’s well-made wine is the main reason to head to their welcoming tasting room, but they also have lots of fun stuff to buy. As you’re enjoying one of their flights, take a gander around the gift shop at nifty corkscrews, bottle openers, and Fortino’s delicious spreads, such as the Garlic Sauvignon Blanc Mayonnaise.
Fortino makes close to two dozen different wines, including their newly released 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon ($30), which is a good enough reason alone to head to their winery. Talented winemaker Gino Fortino says that their estate-grown Cab is the last to ripen and the last to be harvested, resulting in a voluptuous and bursting-with-flavor wine that’s laden with deliciously ripe fruit. Aromas of blackcurrant and flavors of spice, bell pepper and a hint of vanilla—with just the right amount of char and smoke from its aging in French oak—round out this well-crafted Cab.
Do not miss tasting Fortino’s estate-grown Charbono, one of the rarest varietals grown in California, and their tasty fruit wines such as Pomegranate and Raspberry. They also make terrific sparkling wines—try the Almond Champagne with its fragrant marzipan aroma. And if you really want something special, their dessert wines are outstanding, especially the 1991 Montonico Reserve.
In the summer, the winery hosts Music in the Vineyard events—the first one coming up on June 23. Check the website for more info. Fortino Winery, 4525 Hecker Pass Hwy., Gilroy. 408-842-3305, fortinowinery.com.
Cork and Fork Capitola
Cathy Bentley has taken over It’s Wine Tyme in Capitola Village and renamed it Cork and Fork Capitola. The grand opening will be held on Saturday, April 29—with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday, April 27. Bentley has been involved in the wine industry for years, so she is now happy to have her own place to showcase her knowledge and serve up some good wine. Cork and Fork is a cozy spot, and it also comes with a lovely outdoor patio area.
Cork and Fork Capitola, 312 Capitola Ave., Capitola. 435-1110, corkandforkcapitola.com.