Saratoga Wine Stroll
1 cute downtown, 24 local shops, 60 wines. At least I think it was around 60. Can you blame me for not having an accurate count, considering I attempted to complete the 24-stop “Wine Stroll”? Here are glimpses into my wine-heavy stroll.
The afternoon progresses like so…. First stop, Village Burger Bar hosts Wright’s Station. Good start. Next, local boutique Everything But the Wedding Dress is so cute, I forget what wine I’m drinking. Then, Enoteca Five‘s blend of Malbec, Cab Franc, and Petit Verdot is a sight at Saratoga Eyes.
Surprise! The UPS Store, yes, UPS, introduces me to Charles Usher Wines. They don’t have a tasting room, but they do group visits by appointment. Mental note to go sometime. The next handful of stops are relatively uneventful. We begin to make friends with the people maintaining our drinking pace. I discover a nice Zinfandel here, a decent Pinot Noir there. The first (and only?) Rosé featured on the wine stroll. More uneventfulness. And then another surprise at The Barn Owl –the quaintest, most random shop…love it!– features Chesebro Wines‘ late harvest Sauvignon Blanc. It’s not as sweet as most late harvests tend to be, but it’s still nice. Next door at the Saratoga Clothing Store, I get to practice my pretend-German with the rep from Cetani Vineyards. Moving on to Mini Cakes by Tasha, I can only see the cupcakes. Wine? What wine? Give me a cupcake. And some wine.
There were a few shops where the wine was less memorable, but the nibbles compensated for it. In such shops, I was more excited by the sugar (perhaps one thing I like more than wine):
Did we make it to all 24 stops? Alas, no. We closed down stop #22, and made it to 23, but the reps had already packed up. Of course, the folks who closed down stop #23 told us how good the wine was. The wine that we missed. Hey, thanks, strangers. Overall, it’s a win-win-win all around. The local grape growers gain some exposure, we wine strollers discover some new labels, and the neighboring businesses benefit from the foot traffic simply by being on the wine route.
As though we haven’t indulged enough for today, we decide to have dinner (and more wine) at The Plumed Horse. We sit at the bar, and are treated to some tomato bisque on the house…right before the broccoli bisque we ordered arrives. Is that sweetbread? Yum. Here are some photos. I wish could show you the duck breast and the donut holes, but they disappeared quickly because I couldn’t resist peeking through to the Chef’s Table or walking through the wine hallway of glass (which I also neglected to photograph for you, which means you should just see it for yourself).
If you’ve never been, go. Call me and I’ll tag along! We might even emerge from the restaurant to find a shiny Aston Martin (or some other luxury car) parked out front.