.Alfaro’s Dragon Slayer

Look for the fire-breathing dragon on Alfaro’s Dragon Slayer label when you go searching for this flavor-packed red wine. Winemaker Richard Alfaro makes it easy to spot his wines on supermarket shelves with well-designed labels, often with his signature script “A” logo.

The Dragon Slayer wine’s color theme is decidedly purple—a deep, dark purple—thanks to an abundance of “baked dark fruit, stewed tomatoes and hints of cinnamon and pepper.” These spicy flavors on the palate, plus bright cherry, raspberry and mocha notes on the nose, give one enough courage and stamina to slay at least a dozen dragons!

A lively blend of Sangiovese, Zinfandel, Carignane, and Syrah, this reasonably priced wine ($20) pairs well with different foods. “Try it with sharp cheeses, beef, pork, sausage, Italian meatballs, pizza, and tomato sauces,” the winery suggests.

Alfaro’s tasting room is the place to be to try some for yourself—and then get a bottle to pair with your next T-bone.

Alfaro also participates in the quarterly Passport program, organized by the Santa Cruz Mountains Winegrowers Association (see below).

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Alfaro Family Vineyards & Winery, 420 Hames Rd., Corralitos. 728-5172, alfarowine.com.

Passport Day

The next Passport event on Saturday, Jan. 19 is a day when you can visit vineyards, meet winemakers and enjoy a winter tasting of wines from the Santa Cruz Mountains. Passport Day offers an opportunity to visit wineries not usually open to the public. About three-dozen wineries participate, from Woodside to Gilroy. Each passport cost $75 and is valid for one year.

Visit scmwa.com for more info.

Verve Coffee

The next time you’re at Verve Coffee and you get the munchies, try their poached egg biscuit. An organic egg served on a heavenly Manresa biscuit with cheddar cheese is all yours for $7.50—and guaranteed to hit the spot!

A fill-you-up avocado toast with chives, radish, shallot, and a poached egg comes in at $9. Another of my go-to hunger-pang inhibitors is Verve’s chocolate croissant. It goes without saying how good their coffee is.

Visit vervecoffee.com for info and locations.


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