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Archive for July, 2010

Underdog Wine Bar, Livermore, California.

Underdog Wine Bar in Livermore offers an extensive selection of local and international wines, paired with a complimenting menu of small plates.

Tri-Valley, California and Livermore Valley wine country welcomes a trendy, urban-style wine bar to the scene this summer. Nestled among the rolling hills and situated between the vines at Concannon Vineyard,

Underdog Wine Bar offers patrons something decidedly new and refreshing.

Underdog Wine Bar makes its official debut Saturday, August 14 with a grand opening celebration that will include live music, flavorful small bites from chef Barbara Llewellyn and wine tasting. The event is open to the public and runs from noon to 8 p.m.

An example of the innovative and resonably priced food & wine pairings at Underdog Wine Bar.

Regular offerings at Underdog Wine Bar include an extensive list of local and international wine and a menu of inspired seasonal small plates carefully designed to compliment the wines available by the two-ounce pour, six-ounce glass, flight or bottle.

The shaded outdoor terrace has seating for more than sixty and is the perfect place to spend a warm afternoon enjoying views of the vines, surrounding hills and the historic victorian house on the property. Inside, the wine bar has intimate tables as well as an open common space.

Covered Patio at Underdog Wine Bar, Livermore, CA.

The covered patio offers an inviting lounge feel perfect for spending an afternoon among the vines at Concannon.

Following the grand opening celebration, Underdog Wine Bar is planning ongoing special events,  including music on Friday nights, enticing discounts and offers as well as a monthly spotlight on an individual winery where people can learn and converse with local and international vintners.

For more information about the grand opening and Underdog Wine Bar, visit the website underdogwinebar.com.

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Palm Event Center's braised lamb served on an Arabian pita

The Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association’s annual Taste of Terroir was held last night at the Palm Event Center. 16 of the area’s top wineries and restaurants teamed up to create special food and wine pairings for more than 400 attendees and judges, who awarded winery and restaurant teams for standout pairings.

Special to this year’s event, acclaimed travel author, Thomas C. Wilmer, held a signing for his latest travel guide, The Wine Seeker’s Guide to Livermore Valley.

Top wine critics, Leslie Sbrocco, Jessica Yadegaran and W. Blake Gray served as judges for this year’s event and named winners in several categories. Guests also voiced their opinion in the People’s Choice competition.

Casa Real's Rabbit Terrine, winner of two awards

And the winners from 2010 Taste of Terroir are…

Best Expression of Local Ingredients
Wente Vineyards & The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards

2007 Nth Degree Syrah, Livermore Valley and Nicolau Farms (Manteca) Goat Cheese Panacotta with Black Pepper, Estate Garden Smoked Tomato Jam, Tiny Purple Basil

A sampling of the desserts paired with Livermore Valley Ports

Judges’ Best

Occasio Winery & Izzy’s Steak & Chops

2008 Petite Sirah, Del Arroyo Vineyard, Livermore Valley and Petite Syrah marinated skirt steak served with ragu and bourbon yams

The big winner of the night with the awards for Most Innovative and People’s Choice

Ruby Hill Winery & Casa Real at Ruby Hill:

2008 Estate Reserve Zinfandel, Peacock Patch, Livermore and rabbit terrine inlaid with dried cherry and pistachio, garnished with locally grown herbs and cherry demi-glace jam on butter toasted challah with Estate Reserve Zinfandel-Infused Mustard

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Joseph Salazar and Ashley Wickett as Romeo & Juliet at Concannon Vineyard.

Joseph Salazar and Ashley Wickett as Romeo & Juliet at Concannon Vineyard.

The Livermore Shakespeare Festival celebrates a tenth season with a production of the classic, Romeo & Juliet and The Real Thing, a play by critically acclaimed author of Shakespeare in Love, Tom Stoppard. Shows take place among the vines at Concannon Vineyard, with the historic house as the set.

On the expansive lawn area or the bistro tables under an arbor of Chardonnay vines, the grounds at Concannon are the perfect place to pack a picnic and enjoy a bottle of wine as sun sets in the Tri-Valley. The Concannon tasting room is open late on performance days, so come early and purchase a bottle to share before or during the performance.

Shows begin at 7:30 p.m., when the sun is setting in the west.  At times, the beauty of the surroundings eclipses the performers, and at other times, nature seems to perfectly compliment the play.  As Juliet cries out “Romeo, Romeo, where for art thou Romeo” in the famous balcony scene, the sunset has lit her hair and skin so perfectly, the audience genuinely believes Romeo’s fascination with her beauty.

Historical Concannon House

The historical Concannon house provides a beautiful stage for the outdoor performance in the vineyards.

The warm afternoon turns chilly as the sun disappears – so be sure to bring a blanket or jacket for the 2nd act.

For Shakespeare fans coming from out of town, take advantage of the ‘Shakespeare in Love’ package that includes hotel accommodations, tickets to the play, a gourmet catered picnic and wine. 

The Livermore Shakespeare Festival performances in the vineyard are playing select dates now through August 8.

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Tickets are still available to join Livermore Valley Winemakers and Bay Area Chefs for a delectable evening of wine and food pairings showcasing the Valley’s bountiful “terroir” (a french word for soil and is pronounced “ter-wah”). Each winemaker and chef team has worked hard to create innovate wine and food pairings for guests to enjoy. Guests can cast their vote for People’s Choice Award as they taste all of the creative pairings. In a blind tasting, our Culinary and Media Judges for the evening will present awards for Most Innovative Pairing, Judges’ Best, and Best Use of Local Ingredients (Awards announced at 8:15pm). Guests can also enjoy live music on the patio and bid on silent auction lots.

Purchase tickets now to this exciting event!

2010 Participating Wineries:

Charles R Vineyards

Concannon Vineyard

Deer Ridge Vineyards

Eagle Ridge Vineyard

Fenestra Winery

Garre Vineyard & Winery

La Rochelle Winery

Little Valley Winery

McGrail Vineyards

Mitchell Katz Winery

Murrieta’s Well

Nottingham Cellars

Occasio Winery

Page Mill Winery

Rodrigue Molyneaux Winery

Ruby Hill Winery

Tamas Estates

The Steven Kent Winery

Wente Vineyards

White Crane Winery

The Singing Winemaker

The Steven Kent Winery

2010 Participating Restaurants:

Pasta’s Trattoria

Garré Café

The Peasant & The Pear

The Grill at Wente Vineyards

Terra Mia

Palm Event Center in the Vineyard

Castlewood Country Club

Eddie Papa’s American Hangout

Izzy’s Steaks & Chops

Casa Real Event Center

Giuseppe’s Pasta & Grill

The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards

Campo di Bocce

Poppy Ridge Golf Course

Zephyr Grill & Bar

Underdog Wine Bar

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