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Taste of Wine

Here & there in the wine world

If you’ve been with me for a while, you’ll know that every so often I like to rummage through my in-box and come up with some fun and fascinating facts and comments that couldn’t or shouldn’t make a feature in Taste of Wine, but have enough juice for your next small-talk wine party, or happy hour at your favorite wine bar. The envelope please.

Finally, another-wine themed movie. This time it’s with hilarious female comedy stars formerly with “Saturday Night Live,” led by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. “Wine Country,” a major movie, will come out in early 2019 about girlie friends that invade Napa Valley to toast a 50th birthday. Stand by for a crazy cruise through the whole tasting scene. It’s “Sideways,” only nuttier.

Here comes the calorie counting. It’s been one of the most talked-about rules coming from Washington regarding the wine industry and other industries that are alcohol related. Starting in May, the Food and Drug Administration will require chain restaurants to list calories next to all menu items including alcoholic drinks. As you have seen, these restaurants already have revealed the calories for menu food items and I have been shocked by the whopping readings on some of my favorite burgers and other former favorites.

New tours in the Little Italy district of downtown San Diego include four pizza restaurants with a collection of Italian wines to taste. Courtesy photo

Over the top numbers are forecast for margaritas and other mixed-spirit drinks.

Beer may surprise you on the upside, but fear not my wine friends, a five-ounce glass of wine, the standard volume of a glass of the grape, will be the lowest of the category. It’s expected that the average brand will be about 122 calories.

Don’t be surprised if the FDA mandates the calorie count on each bottle of wine in the future. Frankly, I doubt it will have that much of an impact on sales. Wine is rising in sales, compared to beer and spirits.

Funday on Sunday is the promise at Falkner Winery in Temecula as they restart their events each Sunday during spring and summer with games, barbecue, neat prizes, music and delicious menu offerings on the lawn and in their award-winning Pinnacle Restaurant. Special events are from noon to 3 p.m. Check out details at

Little Italy in San Diego, enjoying a renaissance of popularity for wonderful eating places, wine bars and living spaces, has hit on a delicious idea to increase foot traffic for their large lineup of pizza restaurants.

The district has launched a Little Italy Pizza Tour of four popular restaurants to “sample the goods, with pizza from Milan, Naples, Sicily and Liguria.” The story of pizza will be told, from ancient Greece and Rome, to today where it is the most popular food in America. Red wines that bring out the maximum flavor of pizza will be served. It happens each Saturday from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. for $49 each. Call (619) 255-6165 for available dates.

Sal Ercolano’s Seasalt invites the Prisoner for three dinner dates. Seasalt Seafood Bistro in Del Mar, this year promising to offer the biggest of the wine dinner events, has taken a big step in that direction with a three-peat dinner featuring the Prisoner Wine Company, Thursday April 26, Friday April 27 and Saturday April 28, all at 6 p.m. To my knowledge, this is a first for a Southern California restaurant. Napa Valley’s Prisoner is an unconventional blend of wine creativity, hailed by wine critics everywhere. Seasalt has carefully crafted unique dishes that will complement the flavors of Prisoner wines. All three days will sell out so call (858) 755-7100 ASAP. Cost is $70 per person.


Other Wine Bytes include:

  • A Trinitas Wine, Cheese and Charcuterie Tasting is at The Barrel Room in Rancho Bernardo at 3 p.m. April 14. Kasey Hills of Trinitas will lead guests through new release tastings of her top five wines. A variety of gourmet cheeses, aged dry meats, nuts and fruits will be paired with the wines. Cost is $35 per guest. Call (858) 673-7512 for details and an RSVP.
  • Vigilucci’s Gourmet Market in Carlsbad will present “Assaggi y Vino” (Tastes & Wines) at 4 p.m. April 19 on the market patio on State Street. Enjoy three courses, three wines and dessert. Tickets are pre-sold at the market, limited to 22 seats. Details by calling (760) 720-0188.
  • A reminder that the Vin Diego Wine & Food Festival is happening at Liberty Station in San Diego’s Pt. Loma district from 3 to 7 p.m. April 14. Top-shelf wineries from the West Coast will join top chefs from San Diego. Visit or call (760) 805-2131.



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