Collage of images in a film strip

From Hollywood to Vine with Vineyard {511}
Adventures in Wine, Food, Film and Travel


Irene Ojdana
March 18, 2016 | Irene Ojdana

The Girl and the Goat Restaurant

While in Chicago recently, Ed and I ate a scrumptious dinner at the highly-acclaimed Girl and the Goat restaurant. Our good friend Patrick Davila, Director of Operations at Meadowood Napa Valley and fellow Napa Valley Film Festival Board Member, scored us a reservation at its kitchen table, where we were up front and personal with the chefs. It was so interesting to watch the chefs put together the delicious pig face dish, which rightfully receives rave rewiews. And we loved the goat empanadas too. Although it was snowing in Chicago, I'd come back to this restaurant in a heartbeat, even in freezing weather!

Time Posted: Mar 18, 2016 at 5:01 PM Permalink to The Girl and the Goat Restaurant Permalink
Irene Ojdana
March 12, 2016 | Irene Ojdana

CabFest 2016

Ed and I poured our just-released 2012 Diamond Mountain District Cabernet Sauvignon at the second annual CabFest Napa Valley, held at the Lincoln Theater, in Yountville. The event that is dedicated to Cabernet Sauvignon was held over the weekend of March 4, starting with a concert by singer-songwriter Mat Kearney on Friday night followed by two days of cab tasting. The wine was paired with tasty nibbles catered by Feast in Santa Rosa. Over 1000 people attended giving them the opportunity to taste the wine Napa Valley is most known for--from over 100 wineries--and get to hear the stories behind the great wine from the vintners. All the while Karen MacNeil, well-known wine writer, held fun and interesting seminars, where she interviewed cabernet sauvignon vintners and winemakers and like "He said, she said," a game that pitted men against women about their cabernet knowledge, in the theater's auditorium.

CabFest also gave vintners such as Ed and me the opportunity to catch up with fellow vintners, such as Ed Wallis, of Wallis Family Estate-- also on Diamond Mountain--and to schmooze with John Dunbar, Mayor of Yountville and Chairman of the Board of the Lincoln Theater, and his wife Robin (picture).

All proceeds from CabFest go to arts and education programs at the Lincoln Theater.

Time Posted: Mar 12, 2016 at 11:58 PM Permalink to CabFest 2016 Permalink
Irene Ojdana
March 12, 2016 | Irene Ojdana

Screening of "1916 The Irish Rebellion"

As a resuLiam Neesonlt of the long-standing close relationship of the University of Notre Dame and of Ireland, Notre Dame developed a documentary, narrated by Liam Neeson, about the 1916 Irish Rebellion. Although the rebellion by a small group of Irish men and women against the British empire was unsuccessful, it eventually led to the successful Irish Revolution of a few years later and inspired revolutions against the British Empire throughout the world. The documentary creator and writer was Briona Nic Dhiarmada, the Thomas J. and Kathleen M. O'Donnell Professor of Irish Studies and Concurrent Professor of Film, Television, and Theater at the University.

Because Ed and I contributed to the financing of the film, we were invited to the screening at the University of Notre Dame, in South Bend, Indiana, on March 3. There we were lucky to have a few minutes to chat with the immensely talented Irish actor and Academy Award-nominee Liam Neeson. Through his and the University's commitment to the film project, the very interesting documentary 1916 The Irish Rebellion will shortly be screened in cities around the U.S., Ireland and Argentina, and on television stations thoughout the U.S.

Time Posted: Mar 12, 2016 at 9:41 PM Permalink to Screening of Permalink
Irene Ojdana
March 12, 2016 | Irene Ojdana

Premiere Napa Valley Barrel Auction

On February 20, Ed and I poured the best of our barrels of our 2013 Vineyard {511} Diamond Mountain District Cabernet Sauvigon, at the 20th annual Premiere Napa Valley Barrel Auction and Tasting, held at the Culinary Institute of America, in St. Helena. It was our first participation in this exciting event, where 1000 licensed members of the trade gathered to procure wine futures on behalf of their customers through both live and silent E-auctions. Members of the media were also in attendance. In addition to the wine tasting, there was a tasting of delicious artisanal cheese, and a buffet lunch prepared by the Culinary Institute.

Vineyard {511} also participated in Premiere's first online auction with 5 cases of the same 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, which will be bottled in mid-March after having been aged for 30 months in 100% French oak barrels. After another year of aging in the bottle, they will be released in March 2017. Each bottle will be hand-labeled, individually numbered and signed by the winemaker (Rob Lloyd).

The event is an opportunity for Napa Valley vintners to showcase their very special wines, while attendees spend one-on-one time with Napa Valley's noted winemakers and producers. We even had a star sighting of former pro-basketball player Yao Ming, whose winery was represented at the tasting. I couldn't miss him as he towered above absolutely everyone else there!

The 226 lots sold that day raised 5 million dollars for the Napa Valley Vintners Association to support its year-round programs, which benefit Napa Vintners.

We were happy to give up our virgin status after our first participation in this event and look forward to the next one in February 2017!


Time Posted: Mar 12, 2016 at 11:00 AM Permalink to Premiere Napa Valley Barrel Auction Permalink