We've come up here to Gold Country to show Letty's mom and brother where we plan on moving to. Today, we're expanding our reach for some quality Sierra Foothill wine tasting.
We set up our breakfast food, well brunch by now, then head into the bar for some tasting. As the wine flows, I feel something hard bounce off my shin. It's a rock...who threw this at me?
The rock was thrown by Jay, the black dog in the picture above. Jay must have rocks in his head because that's what he likes to fetch. Customers of the winery beware, this dog will find a rock, then find you, plunk you with a stone, and expect you to throw it so he can fetch it.
This is all fine and dandy except the Jay will...not...stop. At some point, Rolo...the red dog...will get tired of it and attack Jay to get him to knock it off for awhile.
That's the life of winery dogs.
We pick out a few bottles and go back outside to eat our quiche.
Next, it's off to see our friends at Amador 360 Wine Collective in the town of Plymouth where we find this sweet Mustang parked out front.
Julie is there, as always, ready to pour and chat about the latest gossip and happenings of the area. Today, we have an extra treat. Thomas Allan, the owner and winemaker of Fate Wines, is there to pour samples of his fine wines.
It's always a treat to catch up on the former underground winemaker of the Sierra Foothills. He tells us that, in addition to making his own wine, he is now the winemaker at Story Winery, where we'll have our second picnic later on.
Off to Bray Winery where Oliver Bray pours a few tastes for us as we buy a few bottles from him, then it's Shenandoah Vineyards to pick up a bottle there and take a bathroom break.
Next, it's off to Shenandoah's sister winery, Sobon, which just happens to be the oldest continuously operating winery in the state (from 1856). We take Letty's mom and Amaury into the museum there to see the old aging cave and ancient winemaking equipment.
Milan Matulich, the Croatian owner of Dobra Zemlja Winery, is there to pour tastes for Amaury and Letty while I just buy a couple bottles of his power wine.
Last, it's off to Story just before closing time where we settle in with a bottle of Rose to go with our sandwiches.
Gypsy, the German shorthair pointer winery dog, comes along to get some ear scratches and to see if she can grab some stray bites of roast beef.
The next day, we head back to Jackson so our guests can explore the old Gold Rush town. After a bit of shopping, it's off to our favorite dive bar there, the Fargo Club, to grab a small Amberbock. We find the bar will be closing soon and moving to the other end of Main Street by the end of the year.
One more stop to see a craft show and get some ice cream in Sutter Creek, and then we head back down.
Across from our hotel, a car show is going on. We drive in...someone forgot to set up cones to cordon off the lot...and find ourselves in an impromptu drive through car show.
I even got this guy...
...and this gal to pose for me.
One more night of rest and then it's time to go home. We have breakfast before the drive across the street at Brookfields where we see a vacationing Santa Claus enjoying the meal with his wife.
Santa's got a sweet 1928 Ford Roadster he drives in the off season.
And that's it for our trio of quick fall trips.
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