.A New-School Napa Winery

On a recent trip to Napa, we stopped by Ashes & Diamonds for a tasting. Friends had recommended this fairly new operation, both for the gorgeous wines and the unique mid-century-modern tasting room.

The brainchild of advertising executive Kashy Khaledi, a visit to Ashes & Diamonds is exciting and memorable. The winery’s 2014 Cabernet Franc ($75) is one of the better Cab Francs I have enjoyed in some time. Winemaker Steve Matthiasson has made a perfect, aromatic wine with enormous bold flavors. A blend of select vineyards from Napa Valley, one can almost taste the volcanic, clay and sandy soils from which the luscious black grapes sprang.

The Ashes & Diamonds team say their winemaking philosophy is simple: “A wine should be based on the quality of farming, minimal intervention in the cellar, and time-honored methods of healthy fermentation and harmonious blending.”  

Khaledi strives to give the visitor not only world-class wines, but also a very memorable experience. He is the son of Darioush Khaledi, owner of the famous Darioush Winery in Napa, with its impressive entrance of Persepolis-style columns reminiscent of ancient Persia.

Ashes & Diamonds, 4130 Howard Lane, Napa. 707-666-4777, ashesdiamonds.com

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Live Earth Farm

Along with its weekly delivery of fresh, organic produce, Live Earth Farm is now partnering with other local vendors.

Look for a hearty loaf of bread from Companion Bakeshop, pastas and pies from Pie Ranch in Pescadero, poultry and eggs from Sol Seeker Farm in Corralitos, and jams from Happy Girl Kitchen in Monterey. Additional partners include coffee from Hidden Fortress Roasters and honey from Rivas Bees and Carmel Honey.  

Live Earth Farm, based in Watsonville, offers shoppers an abundance of choices for the weekly CSA (community-supported agriculture) delivery. And we can all look forward to the farm stand and U-pick opening again in May. In the meantime, you can find Live Earth at local farmers markets. Bonus: their nonprofit Farm Discovery educational programs (farmdiscovery.org) are integral to the farm’s community-supported success.

For more info on Live Earth Farm, including farm tours and field trips, visit liveearthfarm.net.

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