|Cheers to you and yours!|
Since I last posted not much has been going on here at Muse Cottage. Not too many walks, as we have had a cold snap that made me wish to sit and watch Hallmark movies all day and sip on hot cinnamon tea rather than be out and about. Certainly too chilly for this gal to want to putter in the garden... sadly the weather also cost me two of my favorite plants in the garden that were just not deep frost hardy...live and learn.... shall replace them in the Spring if I can not nurse new growth. However that being said I was not going to miss (health allowing... which it did) the sneak peek of the new tasting rooms for our favorite winery, m2 !!
I have shared many visits with you to m2 and their current tasting room in Lodi. Myself and my husband being wine club members nearly from their beginning, and our first year living back in California, and it being love at first sip; we never missed an event if we could help it. This past couple of years being the exception, due to finances and more than often my bad health. I nearly thought we would once again have to miss an event/wine club pick up, it was not looking good, lucky for us, I was blessed with a good day among some bad and we were able to venture out.
This time around, as mentioned above was for the sneak peek of the brand new tasting rooms that are actually in the near by town of Acampo California. It was to be for members only and their guests, being that the structure and grounds are not quite ready to unveil to the masses for a few more weeks. Combined with a wine club pick up and the kick off to the holiday season, it promised as always to be a good time had by all. Of course it is always fun to try the latest releases, meet up with old friends and make new ones, try new bites of food that pair well with the wines being served and enjoy the live band that was sure to be present. The ever present wine maker Layne Montgomery always makes it a jolly time had by all as well, with his slightly off sense of humor, in a good and always laughable way and ready and genuine smile.
The day was a cold one, as mentioned we are in an arctic cold snap, like a lot of the country, though not as bad as many places, it is certainly quite frigid for us "sunny Californians" , so as we headed out, we made sure to bundle up and hoped for a little warmth inside and out upon arrival. The skies had partially cleared up after an overnight rain, and there was a slight breeze that did tend to cut through even the warmest of Winter wear, but we all gathered outside the main tasting room to await the ribbon cutting and the tasting of wines. There was a huge crowd, said to be approximately 500 out of the 700 plus wine club members that were to be in attendance that day, all eager with smiles that showed through a bit of shivering and chattering of teeth. All were very happy to be there, to be included in this huge milestone for Layne and his partners of m2. Speeches were made, platitudes given, and applause and cheers following, and soon the ribbon was cut with the large pair of official golden scissors and we all filed in and were given our first viewing of the new tasting room.
The building inside and out, located out on a country road, among empty fields, with a farm house and farm filled with orchards and cattle across from it, and train tracks behind, is a modern marvel. Rusted iron walls paired with large wall size glass panels, which from what I have seen and been told, light up at night as well as change colors... and that open fully to the outdoors when needed to expose the space to the outdoors and future vineyards. Concrete floors and stone counters with a large m2 letting one and all be of no mistake where they are make up the tasting room and buying counter. Across the "hall" is the barrel and event rooms, no longer all squeezed into two small industrial storage rooms, as the one on East Turner Rd. in Lodi was, there was or would be plenty of elbow room.. I say would be, as with any space, you squeeze in several hundred people and the lack of elbow room is very evident, feeling more like being in a can of sardines. You knew however that you were at a happy place and everyone was very glad to be there, despite the crowds to celebrate this special event together, as everyone was smiling, laughing and sipping to their hearts delight, which I am sure helped the mood... and along with large outdoor heaters, helped warm up those in attendance inside and out.
We stayed, myself, my husband, our daughter and her boyfriend, long enough to sample fine wines, visit a bit, and pick up our wine shipment, and then chose to escape the squeeze of continuing new arrivals to go visit a couple of other wineries in the area, but we certainly look forward to going back and visiting time and time again!!
|m2. Rusted iron walls and large glass panels set against a clouded sky made for a dramatic first|
visual. Sand and a large "lake" of rain water will one day be vineyards and pathways.
|Left to Right... Layne Montgomery, the wine maker, Ted and Terry Woodruff, partial owners cutting the ribbon, making the new location official.|
|Wine club members eager to see what was in this months offering.|
|Members milling about catching up... many wearing the hard hats offered as a nod to it still being a construction zone. The bulk of the members over in the barrel and event rooms did not have quite the same amount of elbow room.|
|Our guest, Paul, who is our youngest's boyfriend and my sweetie Robert discussing the fine points of Old Vine Zin|
|Getting a little fresh air and caught in the act by my daughter|
who was snapping photos that day.