Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Chocolate, Wine and NapaStyle

It's been a long time coming, but my time finally arrived last night, when a few girlfriends and I attended a Chocolate and Wine Tasting at NapaStyle in Costa Mesa. Michael Chiarello, celebrated chef, farmer and wine connoisseur, stopped in for a chit chat, tastings and photo ops. He's the real deal, what you see on television is what you get in real life, and I appreciate it. Upon this gorgeous long wooden table were samples of some treats too - truffles, chocolate covered pecorino, tapenade, and more. Last night's gathering featured three wines from his vineyard, the Eileen Cabernet Sauvignon, Bambino Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Roux Syrah. Michael named the Eileen Cab after his wife and calls it a "wine with hips", and the man does not lie. Bold, beautiful notes of cherries, blackberries perfume the complex yet very easy to drink Cab. Chiarello's vineyards are all organic and he mentioned that they are going bio dynamic as well. What surprises me is how much I enjoyed both Cabernet's, even though it's not a red wine, I typically enjoy. He talked alot about terroir and sustainability. Not just sustainability in terms of the vineyards, but sustainability as it relates to the vineyard's employees and workers, making sure they are able to visit and spend quality time with their families. His restaurant in Yountville, California, Bottega, is making a name for itself as well. Here, Michael, runs his professional kitchen and celebrates the bounty of Napa Valley with his simple yet elegant Italian cuisine. I'm hoping to make it up there soon for some more wine, good eats and great company. Salute, as Michael would say.


  1. Elegantly stated. =-)

  2. holy cow, girl. you rubbed up against royalty! and survived! he IS a hunk and you look so happy to be there. thrilled that you got your dream-come-true expereince! here's to many many more culinary and life adventures! and maybe a man who can cook and look this good in the kitchen and out!! (o;

  3. ps. that orange and neon green combo is gorrrrgeous! (o;