There’s times you travel and not realize what you’re experiencing until later. In conversation the memory of it comes to mind conceiving the fact you had the fortune of stumbling onto a treasure. That is how how I felt about Gypsy Canyon Winery. Two wines of of note Ancient Gypsy Canyon Estate Ancient Vine Angelica non-Vintage Sta. Rita Hills and Gypsy Canyon Trois Pinot Noir 2010 Sta. Rita Hills. A hand blown bottle, handmade paper label printed on a manual letterpress and cork sealed with estate harvest beeswax. These wines are personally crafted from vine to bottle by the legendary somewhat seclusive Deborah Hall.
“I always wanted to improve on the idea of living well, in moderation…. wine is good for you, mentally, physically, and spiritually” -Robert Gerald Mondavi
There’s no denying Robert Gerald Mondavi, the face of Napa Valley was an avant-garde charlatan. The Robert Mondavi Winery opened in 1966 after he was tossed out of the Charles Krug family business with no money. Initially the winery was a showcase of the latest technology employed with luminary founders of Grgich and Stags Leap. The winery is located along highway 29 in Oakville, CA.. What makes this location so special is what’s behind the winery, the Kalon Vineyard, or correctly To Kalon, meaning “place of highest beauty”. Planted in the 1870’s the vineyard is home to some of the oldest vines in Napa Valley on bale clay loam. It was left abandoned in the wake of prohibition but it was then resurrected by Mondavi.
When I cook I’m constantly challenging myself, If I can top the last meal. Can I duplicate a dish that has been made for thousands of years in the 21st century in my kitchen. I always want to pay respect to tradition since my mama never followed a recipe. When I asked her how much she would put into what, she’d look at me perplexed. I gave up the notepad, quickly catching on, a hands on approach is the only way learn. Without abandon I dove into Peking Duck, yes a dish made for royalty. For anyone attempting it too, be prepared to dedicate time, as there’s no cutting corners, Any recipe who make such claims, move on.
First, you don’t have to break the bank purchasing a whole duck. An asian market do stock, as I bought mine locally at 99 Ranch Market for $20. When we travelled to Hong Kong, our bucket list was to experience a Peking Duck dinner from the oldest and famous of the craft. Establish in 1864, the original Quanjude (name means perfection without flaw) has been crafting Peking Duck for 155 years located in the Kowloon LG south Sea Center. Avoid Sunday as they don’t get a fresh shipment till Tuesday, The ducks turn out faster and fresher Wednesday through Saturday.