.An Unpretentious Trinity Rosso 2018 from Soquel Vineyards

When you come across a bottle of good local wine for under $20 in the Capitola Trader Joe’s, the best thing to do is snap it up. 

A major store like Trader Joe’s carrying a Santa Cruz wine is simply wonderful—and this would be Soquel Vineyards’ 2018 Trinity Rosso. It is available in many other local stores, too, and at the winery’s tasting room, where a drive up Glen Canyon Road takes you to their bucolic spot. An abundance of lush vines and panoramic ocean views await you—as well as their terrific wines—and it’s an ideal location to host a special event.

Proprietors Peter and Paul Bargetto and Jon Morgan make wines to suit all pockets—and their Trinity Rosso 2018 is very affordable at $16. A blend of Petit Sirah, Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon, it’s a “trinity” of lush aromas and flavors. It’s what Peter, Paul and Jon call “Paradise, my friend—a little bit of heaven on the California coast.” Judges at this year’s San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition awarded it a double gold, so I would say you’re getting your money’s worth for what the winemakers call “a very good but unpretentious wine.”

Awash with dark and generous blackberry and plum flavors, this everyday drinking wine comes with a handy screw cap.

Soquel Vineyards, 8063 Glen Haven Road, Soquel. 831-462-9045. soquelvineyards.com

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Once Again Almond Butter

Growing up in England, two things I never came across were peanut butter and almond butter. I also lived in Greece for more than a decade but never saw these two foods on supermarket shelves. When I came to reside in the States many years ago, that all changed. I am now a die-hard fan of both—particularly of almond butter. 

The latest brand I tried, made by Once Again, is crunchy almond butter with unsweetened organic roasted almonds without salt. It’s also gluten-free, sugar-free, vegan, kosher, non-GMO, and paleo—and simply delicious. Once Again also makes a creamy version.

Local stores Staff of Life, Aptos Natural Foods and others carry Once Again. 


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