.Cooling Off with Pelican Ranch Winery

I’ve been drinking a lot of Viognier lately—my new hot-weather favorite. When the mini-heatwave arrived on the Central Coast last month, I much preferred a glass of chilled Viognier over a heavier red wine. Also, after a few weeks in Greece and England, drinking fairly good wine in Greece and some rather humdrum wine in the U.K., it was refreshing to return to wonderful local vino.

At Gourmet Grazing on the Green, held on Sept. 24 in Aptos Village Park, I enjoyed Pelican Ranch’s 2015 Viognier (Mettler Vineyard, Lodi). This is a truly delightful mouthful of nectarine and flower blossom, complete with heady floral perfume. I tried many wines that day but kept going back for this one’s intriguing flavors.

Longtime owner and winemaker Phil Crews really knows his onions, er, grapes. He and his wife Peggy can be found in their tasting room most weekends, where you can try this vibrant Viognier ($24) and all of their other interesting wines as well.

Pelican Ranch Winery, 100 Kennedy Drive, Capitola, 426-6911. pelicanranch.com.

The Honey Ladies

After a honey tasting at a farmers market in Walnut Creek, I bought some raw unfiltered Blackberry Blossom Honey. Reading the label at breakfast, I saw that the company, the Honey Ladies, based in Los Gatos, actually helps out bees. The label reads: “This honey is made by bees that have been saved from extermination. When unwanted hives are found we safely collect the bees and hives and relocate them to our farm where we harvest the honey. Each jar of honey bought helps us save more hives.” Visit thehoneyladies.com for more info.

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Strut Your Mutt

The Haute Enchilada in Moss Landing will hold a Strut Your Mutt event at their lovely restaurant to benefit Peace of Mind Dog Rescue. So, strut your mutt for a tail-wagging paw-ty from 12:30-4 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 30—complete with prizes for the best costumed pooch. Tickets are $25. For more info and to RSVP visit peaceofminddogrescue.org or call 718-9122.


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