27 January 2015

Almost Grey in Napa

The sun was missing this morning, but our day brightened as we entered Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bakery in Yountville for our morning coffee. This is a combination patisserie-boulangerie, and the products are as beautiful as any we've seen in France. I immediately tell CA that I want breakfast here every day we're in the Napa Valley. And, I am not kidding.

We somehow manage to poke about all morning into the early afternoon, with a second coffee at Model Bakery in St. Helena, and then lunch back in Yountville at Mustard's. A delightful ambience and well-prepared and presented food.

We're easily at Cardinale for a 3:00pm tasting. Cardinale's winemaker is Chris Carpenter, and we're privileged to spend almost two hours tasting 4 Cabernet Sauvignons and being absolutely drawn into the Napa culture by Chris' enthusiasm, experience, and knowledge. My Chris is ecstatic, although his low-key demeanor rarely gives a hint.

Today with Chris Carpenter at Cardinale is a pinnacle point for CA. Those points are all too rare in any life, but I recall another one in London when a World Soccer Official CA met at the Marble Arch Marriott arranged tickets for Chris to attend an Arsenal-Chelsea match.

Thank you Chris Carpenter for spending so much of your valuable time making your high school freshman football coach so happy.

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