Greetings one and all. If you are sitting comfortably I shall begin. First let’s turn for even more comfort to the love songs that Country and Western music offers us. This time my Song of the Week is the timeless, “I’ve missed you, but my aim is improvin’,” a very moving and tender song with poignant lyrics that will no doubt bring a tear or two to many an eye.
Public Service Announcements #403 and #404: Lauren’s Restaurant plays host to an Evening of Dinner Jazz at 7pm on Saturday, August 1st, while The Boonville Lodge sees the return of Karaoke, this time accompanied by a menu of Sushi, on Wednesday, August 5th at 6.30pm.
With karaoke in mind, for The Quote of the Week I am reminded of the comment by great jazz songstress Billie Holiday who said, “I can’t stand to sing the same song the same way two nights in succession. If you can, then it ain’t music, it’s close-order drill, or exercise or yodeling, or something. Not music.” Sounds like she’d go down well on Wednesday night when every song is unique!
On to a couple of the topics under discussion this week at The Three-Dot Lounge. Yes it’s “Moans, Groans, Good Thoughts, and Rampant Rumors” from my favorite bar/restaurant in the Valley known only to those in the know. (Three dots… Geddit?)
…A family of five visitors swung by The 3-Dot last week and each of them was raving about the delicious sandwiches they had enjoyed on a picnic in Hendy Woods. Laurie Cooper had made the goodies at the deli in the AV Market in Boonville and the visitors wanted me to pass on their deep satisfaction and gratitude to her. Good job, Laurie. A great deli sandwich is a truly wonderful thing.
…Along with one or two other 3-Dot regulars, I am currently deeply involved in reading the recently published ‘Mendocino Noir’ by the AVA’s Bruce Anderson and Mark Scaramella. I think it’s a great read and I can assure readers that I am not being paid to say that, although by doing so I do have their guarantee that nothing macabre will ever happen to me in this county!
Wine & Whine of the Week! Yes, both in one tidy package. Here we go. Lazy Creek Winery is now owned by Ferrari-Carano ‘Family’ and Eric Asimov, in the NY Times’ Dining and Wine section says, “They are a big, glossy outfit in Sonoma whose ornate esthetic is about as far as possible from the rusticity of Lazy Creek. I suppose I should not panic yet. Don and Rhonda Carano, the owners of Ferrari-Carano, told Wines & Vines magazine that they don’t plan to change anything at Lazy Creek. They say they will keep the separate name, vineyards and vines. Lazy Creek made wonderful but idiosyncratic wines and while Ferrari-Carano’s wines are not bad, they aren’t particularly interesting. They’re made with mass appeal in mind.”
Meanwhile, I am reliably informed that the winemaking techniques used for decades by Hans and Theresia Kobler and in more recent times by Josh and Mary Beth Chandler, have been displaced by more ‘corporate’ methods and at least one member of the staff was unceremoniously told she was being let go and given five days to get out. I shall certainly savor my final bottle of Lazy Creek’s Gewürztraminer and will sip it down as The Wine of the Week with some Humboldt Fog Cheese, a little Brie, and some smokey Gouda. It may the last time I get to feel such an orgasmic experience. Before you say to yourself, ‘Oh, all our Valley wineries are the same,’ please don’t! The Koblers and Chandlers were Valley friendly and lived here. I cannot imagine, for example, that the Caranos will be seen at The Lodge or will attend the annual Crab Feed (but would love them to prove me wrong). So, despite the blurb on their website telling us that they are not interested in short-term financial gains, I have my doubts, and cannot help but think that once again we have witnessed outside corporate winery interests and their blandness displacing the unique product of a wonderful old locally-owned winery (one of the Valley’s original three, I should add). Please pass me the sick bag, Bruce.
The Value of a Drink. Before I go, I’d like to pass on to you, under the heading ‘Life Lessons,’ a little advice that you may find useful, even important as you meander across life’s rich tapestry. Wine is once again the focus and this clearly comes from a very wise and caring mind: “'Sometimes when I reflect back on all the wine I drink, I feel shame. Then I look into the glass and think about all the workers in the vineyards and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn't drink this wine, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, 'It is better that I drink this wine and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver.” — Beautiful sentiments, wouldn’t you say? This column is getting kinder and gentler all the time.
Oh, dear, have I upset somebody? I’ll get my coat and leave. Be careful out there; think good thoughts, and, with the hot weather with us, remember to keep your windows cracked if you have pets in your vehicle. May your god go with you. One final request, “Let us prey.” Humbly yours, Turkey Vulture.