Updated: Jan 14
I bet if I played this twangy song you'd probably recognize it.
'Stand By Your Man' by Tammy Wynette.
Ring any country music bells?
With lyrics like:
Stand by your man, And show the world you love him Keep giving all the love you can Stand by your man
How does this song relate to anything?
Well, last night 'Sonoma Wine Life' also known as ME....
I wasn't focused on being the jet setting Sonoma County instagram/blogger that I typically am.
Last night, Sonoma Wine Life stood by her man proudly!
My firefighter was invited to Skipstone Winery for the Harvest Celebration.
Now, I'd be lying if I said this night wasn't A LITTLE bit about me. ; )
Skipstone has been on my radar for awhile now.
Nestled in the mountains above Alexander Valley.
By appointment only winery.
VERY limited production wines that sell-out immediately.
Winemaker is Philippe Melka, a famed Napa Valley Cabernet consultant.
Viognier, Malbec and a Cabernet Sauvignon.
A 200 acre ranch situated along a fault line.
I've been itching to visit Skipstone Winery, which has an air of mystery.
The other night, while driving home from an event, my firefighter boyfriend casually told me he'd been invited to Skipstone's Fall Harvest Celebration.
I nearly dropped my jaw out the car and onto Highway 101.
Skipstone? We are going to Skipstone?!?!?!?!?!?
There was no playing it cool.
We were supposed to be going to a Giants game.
Those plans were immediately dropped.
When Skipstone emails, you answer!
Setting aside my inner wine geek for a second.
There was a very honorable reason why Skipstone invited a member of Geyserville Fire to the event.
An important announcement happened during the festivities.
As we drove up to Skipstone, we passed rows and rows of about 500 Manzanilla Olive Trees.
These Olive Trees play a critical role in the firefighter partnership with Skipstone.
Fahri Diner, Skipstone's owner, a tech industry titan and respected Venture Capitalist.
Fahri gave a speech that captivated Skipstone members in attendance.
He brought up a key point. We must move forward in the wake of last year's fire season.
We remember our local brave men and women firefighters only when something bad could happen to us.
Skipstone plans to take a more active role in the ongoing support of local firefighters.
In addition to wine, Skipstone also makes olive oil.
Olive Oil is very close to Fahri's heart.
From the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, Fahari has a heritage of olive farming.
Skipstone Olive Oil is made without the aid of chemical additives. Sheep act as weed control. In 2009 the Skipstone Olive grove obtained CCOF certified organic status.
Moving forward---- 100% of the proceeds from this 'liquid gold', Skipstone Olive Oil, every cent, will be donated to the local Geyserville Fire department.
With this news the crowd erupted!
A permanent partnership.
Fahri could not emphasize enough how grateful he is for the dedication of local firefighters.
I respect Fahri's mindset.
Coming up on the one year anniversary of the Firestorm that burned at least 245,000 acres; I think it's a good time to reflect.
Fahri and Skipstone remind me that being proactive is key.
The harvest celebration at Skipstone was magical.
The Skipstone property is a treasure.
To think, a year ago, if it had not been for the hard-work and fast action of local Geyserville firefighters and Cal Fire firefighters, we may have lost this winery.
Spending the evening at Skipstone.
Walking the property.
Surrounded by terraced vineyard views.
Eating course after course of food harvested right on the Skipstone property.
Chef's Laura and Sayat Ozyilmaz dazzling us with their Middle Eastern cuisine.
I've never been to a winery event where the food is so colorful, layers upon layers of texture AND innovation.
Most winery events I attend have a set menu with set courses.
Not on this night.
A large outside table near the outdoor kitchen is where I witnessed the chef's cooking magic.
Dish after dish paraded out of the kitchen. Each one different.
Lamb tartare, lamb meatballs, smoked yogurt, pickled heirloom tomatoes, lamb bacon bites, octopus salad, and fried cheese.
At one point Fahri was showing some guests the chicken coop.
Out he pulled some freshly laid eggs.
Over walked the chef.
Spur of the moment the chef whipped up a new egg creation to serve.
We all hear about "farm to table". Farm to table was literally unfolding before my eyes.
Wine was pouring.
A 16 Liter bottle welcomed us as we entered the party.
16 liter's is two cases of wine in one bottle!!!!
Well over a $6,000 bottle of Oliver's Blend wine.
I'm still in awe.
As the sunset blanketed the ranch and the twinkle lights came on...
I felt like I was in Europe.
Late dining. Wine pouring. Music blaring. Chef whipping up masterpieces and guests standing around the kitchen sampling the food delights.
On the car ride home I wondered if it was all a dream.
You drop into this winery like Peter Pan flies into Neverland.
I tucked a little of the magic wine fairy dust under my pillow when I went to sleep last night.
I'm not a member of Skipstone but maybe I'll journey to this magical wine land again soon!
They are good people. They support firefighters. They care.