Two New California Faves

By Jillian Bernardini - Jan 09, 2012 - 11:32 AM
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Yep, it's a Monday...and it's 27 degrees here in Boston, so of course I'm continuing to reminisce about my trip to California.  Can't blame me for that!

I want to share two amazing experiences with you, which were both tastes of California and its terroir that I had never savored before.... Yes, yes that French word has been overused and misused in multiple contexts, but by terroir here, I'm speaking of passion and identity in producing by hand, one's own artisanal delicacies.  

Wine and chocolate.  Both can be blissful, serendipitous moments individually or as a harmonious pairing.


100% Pinot Noir grapes from eight vineyards during the 2008 harvest, which was also the year that California suffered those random bouts of ongoing wildfires.  The terroir in this wine?  Literal smokiness on the palate coupled with plummy, jammy, rich berry notes.  Incredibly, and surprisingly, smooth for being a 14.5%-er.  Definitely a Christmas day treat that my sister didn't mind opening, and it paired beautifully with our roasted salmon.  


Another treat that has now forever made me turn a blind eye to commercial truffles and chocolates: See's Candies.  For some bizarre reason, my sister and I had only horrific childhood memories related to this candy because our Aunt would send only the thin mint flavored, seasonal boxes. Sad, and unfortunate.  


               Looking pretty excited post-chocolate samples and purchases


In actuality, See's has an absurd array of homemade truffles, brittles, toffees, and you can craft your own assorted box to include whatever you'd like!  Of course, I took part in this and selected my own 1/2 pound medley of chocolate treats.  It was pretty stressful, having over 50 varieties to choose from made it tricky.  



This was the Blueberry Truffle, and it was one of the best chocolates I've ever tasted.  Among others was the Dark Bordeaux truffle, a brown sugar creamy center, and also the Kona Mocha, with a coffee center and rolled in toasted coconut.

I suggest everyone visit their online shop and make an assortment for yourself!


I know that it's a terrible time to chat about wine and chocolates, post-New Year's resolutions and all...but I find that if we all treat ourselves once in a while, then we can be sane, sociable, and happy people, enjoying life's tasty delicacies all in stride and with moderation.  

Happy Monday!