The days started out with me sleeping in. It’s funny. Usually the first night away, I don’t sleep well. That has not been the case. We were determined to just take it easy and relax. Relax equals sleep. :DD
By eight, we were up, showered and ready to find some sustenance. The hotel has a continental breakfast, but I wanted something more than a sweet roll. We ended up at Buffalo Chips and had a fabulous breakfast. My veggie omelet was to die for.
After that, we drove over to Safeway (discovered they also carry Sobon) and picked up some sandwiches, chips, ice and drinks. We brought a cooler with us, so we put that to good use. We climbed in the car and just started to drive. With no plans or places to be until the afternoon, we wandered the backroads of The Foothills. We went through Volcano, Lockeford, and a half dozen other small towns, (pop 100 – 200).
We stopped by Morse Winery, but there was no one around, so we left (only to discover they were open for business) and headed back towards Plymouth. That took us past Sobon, which sadly was still closed for tasting. As we head back down the majority wine artery, we made not of which ones were open, open with appointments only and which ones were closed. There was a fair selection.
We got back to the hotel around a quarter to 11 and decided to take a bit of a nap before lunch. We ended up just eating in the room and watching the news. It’s very depressing to see the numbers soaring and it made me determined to enjoy myself as much as possible because I have a feeling this will be it for a long time.
At quarter to two, we headed back out, retracing our footsteps to Plymouth and up Steiner Road to Rombauer. They were a lot busier that I thought they would be, but we had an appointment, so weren’t worried. John and Irene were already there and halfway through a bottle of Rombauer chardonnay. They had a bottle of the zin for me. I was careful to keep my distance from Irene because, even though she tested negative, she was exposed again right afterwards.
I had heard about all the stress health care works have been experiencing and could see it all in her face. She looked so tired, just to the point of collapse. She would spontaneously start crying and talking about how scared she is, not that she’ll catch, but that she will give it to someone. She stayed masked for the most part and I kept my distance (when she drinks, she gets really affectionate).
We went in for our tasting and had a great time. Rombauer is very good to their employees and it shows with how happy they are. Our pourer said that they kept everyone on the payroll while they were closed and even had a wine dinner for the employees so that they could sample the new wines and see what they paired with (Their Joy of Cooking roots show) – yes, it’s the same Rombauer) . I think that’s very telling.
After that, we had some munchies, cheese, fruit, crackers, it was lovely to just sit and visit.
We got back to the room about four, just enough time to crash for a bit and then get ready for dinner. We headed back to the Imperial and were greeted like old friends. Walter was busy entertaining as we passed a table, much to the delight of the people. I love Chef to the moon and back, but he does not like cats. Walter came over and got some pets, but seem to pick up on that vibe and went to another table. He’s nothing if not easy.
For dinner, Chef and I both had the grilled polenta with chicken sausage, Irene had the chicken and TBG had pork tenderloin and peaches. Again the food was yummy, but I was a little disappointed with the wine I’d brought. It didn’t deliver as I had hope. John and Irene had Rombauer – they sipped mine, but that was it. We were missing a cork, so I left the bottle behind.
Back to the hotel and I have to admit sleeping the sleep of the virtuous (which I’m not). TBG went for a walk up to the fire station and I work up when he came back. He made a crack about me falling asleep in the middle of Antiques Roadshow, I would have responded, but I was already sleeping.
And the photos!
Let play Find the Bunny
Fred is ready for breakfast
My small breakfast!
Guess why I took a picture of this! Guess!
Morse used to have great field of lavander... now they are sunflowers (changed owners)
This is all the lavander left... sigh
TBG's pork tenderloin and peaches
Mushroom risotto (for the table)
Grilled polenta and chicken sausage... it tasted way better than it looked.