This past weekend I had the opportunity to attend an amazing wine and food pairing in Sonoma. Hosted at the ever charming Arrowood Winery in Glen Ellen, myself and fellow Bay Area bloggers were whisked away for the day to wine country, and I can honestly say I am really truly grateful for the experience. I’ve heard raving reviews about the delicious food served at renowned restaurant, Girl & the Fig. So you can imagine my surprise when I saw that the event would be catered by their lead Chef.
I’d like to thank Kristina Werner, wine maker at Arrowood. She herself is quite the inspiration, who went from a BioChemistry and Agricultural Economics degree to pursue winemaking full time. Something I took away from listening to her that I’d like to share:
“Taste everything you can get your hands on.
Never stop learning and never get bored.”
I couldn’t agree more. Cheers to an amazing day that I don’t take for granted. My eyes and stomach are very full :)
I have found a new appreciation for wine, what goes into making it, and how it really can transform a meal and your senses. If you’re in Sonoma one of these days, be sure to visit Kristina and the Arrowood staff and taste for yourself. I personally would go back in a snap.
For those who are interested in Arrowood wine but can’t get to Sonoma anytime soon, I’m offering 15% off anything on their site using “ARROWOOD15” here. I had an amazing time and can’t wait to go back.
If you follow me on Instagram, you’d see the influx of food posts as of late. @Twelfthknight and I are very much centered around eating together. Nothing crazy or pretentious, just good food. Whether it is noshing locally, eating our way through a new city (we loved eating thought Denver), or cooking at home, we love our eats. I should note that we will never be seen waiting for 2 hours + for overly priced and over hyped restaurants that is common here in SF…no sir, we have things to do.
Enjoy my month’s round up of a few of our favorite food posts as well as my new “Cheat Day” pullover that I find appropriate to wear on repeat…because let’s face it. Cheat day is technically every day.
Christmas came early for @Twelfthknight and I earlier this week when we took our little “Moobie” with us to Napa for an early Christmas/NY/2 year Anniversary trip :) It’s fun to go during offseason, you can beat all the traffic and the lines and eat and walk around as you please without the crowds. It was splendid, and we ate and ate like fiends.
Have a great week everyone, stay warm and be well.
Happy Labor Day everyone, what are you doing for this long weekend? I’m missing being on vacation mode, but hopefully you can travel with me through these next batch of photos from our recent trip. Between the waterfall hike to sipping drinks on the beach, splashing through the breathtaking views, and eating our fair share of musubi and shaved ice, I think it’s safe to say that we milked our short stay on the island to it’s max relaxing capacity. We hope to explore elsewhere too in the near future, so for those of you who have been to the other Hawaiian islands, what are your favorite places to eat, see, and stay?
As always, thanks for reading and enjoy your 3 day weekend!
It’s already been a busy week and I’m still thinking about the lovely brunch we all had to celebrate my boo’s 35th birthday :D What’s our favorite brunch spot in SF? We head to Noe Valley of course. This might be a bold statement, but I would voluntarily wait a good hour or more for Griddle Fresh‘s souffle pancakes, and if you know me then you know how I feel about waiting excessively for things. Anyway, I highly recommend their fired banana mascarpone souffle stack while their lemon ricotta pancakes are equally as delicious.
What to wear to brunch on a fine Saturday morning? It was warm by SF standards, so I paired a cream BB Dakota sweater that I got from Shopbop.com with my favorite Lovers + Friends denim shorts. Heels might sound a bit crazy on such a steep incline combined with limited parking, however these ones by Chinese Laundry were good to my feet. And my cream & black bag, I’d like to tote with me everywhere now thanks to Deux Lux. It’s a great bag, and I’m a sucker for tassels.
After brunch, we roamed Noe Valley’s farmer’s market and grabbed some green juice from Juicy Lucy. There was even face painting action for the birthday boy (he’s a kid at heart) who I’m sure will be embarrassed if I give more detail. So let’s just say he’s my Batman :)
Happy Birthday ‘Murica. Did everyone have a good 4th of July weekend? As usual, I look forward to our big family reunion on Great Uncle Jack’s almond farm in Modesto, CA. It’s the highlight of the summer as far as family events are concerned. My Japanese American side of the family (Dad’s side) literally planted their roots in California’s farming country (as did many Japanese Americans after the war) where they raised almonds, strawberrys, and peaches. Without giving you a history lesson since that’ll be it’s own book, I’ll just round up the highlights of this year’s festivities.
We grandkids have a very close relationship with our Obachan, aka “Granny.” So even with all that has happened to her this year, at 92 years of age she was able to enjoy the day (wheel chair and all with the special thanks to my mom and Auntie Kioko.) The boyfriend came with our fur baby Boo to meet the entire family which was incredibly fun. It was great to show him the farm and countryside as he’s never been before. Everyone adores Boo and everyone agrees Tracy fits right in with our big fam. And to verify acceptance, Great Auntie Fumi said “oh my, he’s so handsome” *winks*..so there’s that hehe :D
All us cousins are grown up now and as we’ve gotten older we’ve become much more connected, i.e playing multiple rounds of a boardgame called Tsuro. It’s challenging, and we were all really into it. Old photo albums were out to look at, most of which were from the 60’s-70’s, some earlier. I love looking through those polaroids, Granny and Auntie they were quite fashionable with their cat-eye glasses. Eerily, there’s a lot of facial expressions Auntie Kioko makes in these photos, and they are quite distinct so apparently it’s genetic as I have those distinct expressions as well…yep the older I get, I’m becoming more like my Aunt. Hmph.
It’s not a party without food, and we take it very seriously here. We’re all bakers and cooks, at least the women are. So every year we have an array of grass fed burgers, polish sausages, salmon patties, sushi, Japanese fried chicken, at least 5 different salads, and cousin Barbara’s 3 different homemade ice creams to accompany some sort of pie or cake. By the time everyone eats and rests and eats again, the sun is setting and we light some firecrackers and call it a mighty full day.
Family is really everything here and any third party observing can see just how strong our personalities, genetics, and sense of humor really trickles down to each person and generation. My Dad grew up in Modesto and he’s instilled this great sense of work ethic into my brother and I. It’s incredibly humbling and the respect for our parents and grandparents are of the utmost, that never goes away.
From my family to yours, we wish you the best :) As always, thanks for reading.
Did everyone have a fun relaxing Memorial Day weekend? Excellent, I thought so :D
As for me, the beau and I along with our fur baby headed down the coast an hour out to Santa Cruz for the day. For starters, we ate brunch at the Sea Breeze Cafe where they make home made cinnamon rolls which were full of warm nutty buttery goodness. We stopped for some Verve Coffee at their roasting plant behind the cafe. Serious lattes are churned outta there, they are top notch and even have one in Los Angeles. Driving up a bit more, we stopped to walk along the coast ridge and then walked all the way down towards the Boardwalk. After looking at a beach side open house going for a cool 2.5 million we decided that we only like the idea of being near water or seeing it from afar. So with that being said we hopped in the car and drove to downtown Santa Cruz for ice cream at the Penny Creamery. A nice pick me up from walking the coastline before we headed north to Scott’s Valley. What’s in Scott’s Valley you say? Sushi at Otoro, which was a superb way to end our day trip.
Thanks for reading :)
P.S. If you’d like to stay current with me during the week, be sure to follow on Instagram: @shoes_and_sashimi
People are always shocked when I say that I’ve never really experienced Napa Valley, simply because as an adult I’ve been in Southern California the majority of the time. My parents go often, either for themselves or to entertain guests so I end up living and eating vicariously through them. Bouchon, The French Laundry, Ad Hoc…It seems like everyone and their cousins have been except for me. So to my surprise last Sunday after being bed ridden with what seemed like the plague, the beau decided to pack me in the car and drive on up to Napa for the day. Sweet, right?
Perusing all the vendors at Oxbow Public Market. There’s just so much going on and so many wonderful smells of all kinds of cuisines permeating the place. It’s overwhelming, but in a tasty sensory overload kind of way.
Making a pit stop at Vallarta Market to try their famed burrito. Who goes to Calistoga for a burrito? We did…and it was divine….it’s hidden in this tiny little Mexican grocery store, luckily you can get directions to such establishment here: 1473 Lincoln Street, Calistoga, CA
Going to Bouchon Bakery to pick up gingerbread muffins for Mama and Papa. It’s a bustling little place that I call bread heaven: 6528 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599
Ending our trip with a surprise dinner reservation at Ad Hoc by Thomas Keller. Each night is a different prefix menu and I’m still full just thinking about our meal. In all honesty, the Cream of Mushroom Soup was my favorite, served with a gruyere cheese crostini. The main dish was Veal Scallopini served on whipped gold potatoes and broccolini romanesco. And finally for dessert, Vanilla Ice Cream Sundaes with butterscotch, pecans, and strawberry sauce. Needless to say, I am back at the gym and hot yoga to work all of this off!