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Aug. 27, 2008
R&D Ventures Outside the Kitchen
Us folks in the R&D department don’t have any windows near our desks (we like to keep our ingredients and the nit and gritty of our recipes on the down low).

So every now and then we have to get outside and stock up on our Vitamin D.

This month, we decided to rent a bus and drive up to Napa to expand upon our culinary knowledge. Our first stop was Copia—The American Center for Wine, Food and The Arts.

Copia has a wide range of culinary selections which will keep the everyday foodie busy for hours. They offer classes on wine, wine pairings, cheese, chocolate, and even gardening. For our adventure, we took a wine class which explained the process of wine tasting as well as wine making. We’re all expert wine tasters now and some of us even sampled their wine-tasting machines.

After the wine class, we explored the edible garden—my favorite part of Copia. Here they had a wonderful spread of fruits and vegetables which they also use in their restaurant, Julia’s Kitchen (in honor of Julie Child). Visitors can taste the ripe fruits and veggies as they walk around the garden. This was the perfect time of year to visit the garden as there were tons of fruits for us to pick. We tasted apples, blackberries, mulberries, grapes; a couple of us even got away with some corn.

Before returning home, we stopped at my favorite winery in Napa—St. Supery. We had a private wine tasting with the Assistant Director of Vineyard operations, Geoff Gatto. Geoff works on the Dollarhide ranch which is where St. Supery grows most of their grapes. The fact that they grow their own grapes sets them apart from many wineries in Napa. Geoff gave us all a different perspective on what really goes into the making of wine. He talked to us about the technical side of harvesting grapes and how shade, temperature and Brix can play a huge part in the overall outcome of wine. If you’re ever in the Napa Valley, I would definitely recommend visiting St. Supery.

Overall, we had a wonderful time at Copia and St. Supery; not only did we stock up on antioxidants and Vitamin D, but we learned a little bit along the way. Not bad for a day out of the office.
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About this Blog

We like getting our heart rates up, taking a big breath of fresh air, savoring delicious food. But we also love telling stories and here's where we type 'em up. (BTW, it works both ways; leave a comment—please and thank you.)

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