The Great Plotnik

Monday, May 11, 2015

Rafanelli and Little Larry for Mother's Day

A. Rafanelli is the prettiest winery we know of. Only members of the Wine Club can visit, and you can't get into the Wine Club unless you get on the mailing list, and there is a wait list to get on the mailing list. Sounds Club-54ish, but, really, it's the most pleasant, low-key place. The advantage of visiting at your prescribed time is that you have the whole vineyard pretty much to yourself. Tasting wine and chocolate in the cellar, and then picknicking overlooking the lake, with the geese flying in to see what's going on and the horses grazing in the field --- every time we come up here we think more and more fondly about Sonoma County.

Of course, we'd have to have had OUR great grandparents buy the land and open the winery in 1913.

No, we're not in the Rafanelli Wine Club, but our friends The Great and Mrs. Zinfandini are, so we tag along with them.

Afterwards we took in a few more wineries: Zichichi, a name we had run into in Western Sicily, sells no current wine, only futures. This means you taste out of the barrel and if you like it you order it for pickup nine months from now. That photo above of Plottie and Zinfandini was taken on the veranda at Zichichi. The young Petite Sirah served out by the lady below was delicious already so we all bought several future bottles.

After that a wasted tourist trap spot at Dutcher's Crossing, but that led to the wonderful Mauritson, whose Rockpile Zinfandels are spectacular. You'll be able to judge soon, if you show up here for dinner, because the Plotniks are now members of the Mauritson Wine Club. With Il Gioiello, that makes two. We are SO NorCal.

We really need to start consuming more wine.

That was Saturday. Sunday Ducknik got to choose her restaurant for Mother's Day and she picked Little Larry (Le P'tit Laurent). We walked down the hill into Glen Park and ate the very best moules, with those French Fries and the garlicky buttery gravy, sacre bleu, then sea bass the way only the French do it, and braised lamb shanks. A delicious rosé, and don't forget the apple tart and espresso.

At the very end we looked through the curtain and there was our friend Liz G. having dinner with her friend. Liz's guide dog Fredericka was under the table as usual, probably scrounging any accidental bread crumbs that came her way.

It's civilized up here, y'know? And the Dodgers won, which makes me happy, and the Giants won, which makes Ducknik happy. It's Mother's Day. You're supposed to be happy on Mother's Day.


At 2:03 PM, Anonymous Cousin Seattle said...

That lamb looks so succulent!


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