Farewell Wine Tour, and Goodbye Napa

We’ve reached the end of our amazing wine tasting adventure. For the last 4 months we’ve explored every wine region from LA to Canada and here are the final stats…
Tree/Stevie – 138 unique winery visits, 152 total wineries including repeats, 2 passport events, 3 library tastings, 8 barrel tasting events, 63 purchased bottles, 2 passouts (both by Stevie)

Kiki – 40 winery visits, 2 barrel tasting events, countless hours lurking in the front of un-dog friendly wineries
We gained a lot of knowledge on this trip. We learned that visiting 4 wineries in a day is tasting, 5-7 is drinking, and any more than 8 is considered an Extreme Sport requiring dedication and training. We learned to walk out anytime a room is pouring in plastic cups, even if it’s free.  We learned to swirl, swish, roll, and in Stevie’s case throw wine in order to aerate it (sorry about that Matt). We studied Bordeaux and Burgundy wines, dinking each with a thirst for understanding. When we started this trip all we knew was that we liked big reds, but today we understand that means a combination of the 5 noble varietals (Merlot, Cab Sauv, Malbec, Petit Verdot, & Cab Franc) in some blended form. We started off hating Pinot but grew to respect its complexity and fragility. Stevie also learned about growing conditions, soil, acidity, topography, climate, winemaking, world regions, and a bunch of other shit I’ll never remember.
What I really learned is that wine is a great metaphor for life. Some grapes do fine when they stand-alone. Others need to be surrounded in order to realize their true potential. Some prefer deep rich soil to stretch their roots. Others grow in shallow rocky terrain and thrive in the struggle. Some prefer hot days and cool nights while others need consistent temperatures. But no matter the grape and despite the individual experience, they all have one essence. To really understand wine beyond simply drinking it, you have to pull the essence out of it.  You have to use your mind, sight, smell, touch, and taste to explore the layers and unravel its secrets. I feel like truly experiencing your life requires the same approach.
And what do you find when you unravel a really good bottle of wine? What’s the essence? Quite simply, LOVE. In it’s purest form. In a true art form. From the vine to the chemistry lab, from the barrel to the bottle. Big grape or small grape, thick skin or thin skin, red, white, or rose, love is the main ingredient. Understanding and embracing that love is the only way to pull out the essence. And the same is true of life. In conclusion, I’m beginning to believe love is what we’re all made of as well.
We’d like to thank all the wonderful people who poured for us, drank with us, and educated us during this epic experience. A special thanks to the 40 wineries that let Kiki in! You made her trip. And to Matt and Pinda, we love you guys! Come drink with us in the Mendoza Valley!
Over and Out – TREE

This is for you Adam
Kiki falling asleep with wine grapes in her mouth
The girls getting crazy!
Never say Die, even in a sewer
Library Artisan wines, the best
Private sit down tasting in the cave, Hall
Look at us, we’re like art
Wine, for all my friends!
Ballers, shot callers, or…something
In search of the best Cab. This was close
Stevie aerating her wine on Matt’s crotch
Our AWESOME friends, Matt and Pinda
“That’s just how we roll people”


  1. Anonymous says:

    Trip of a lifetime!

  2. Awe-some. So happy for you guys. <3

  3. wow. that is an accomplishment guys. well done. what a way to culture your knowledge of a culture.. hands on.. in the fields. you guys should somelier (if that can be a verb). or grow! or bottle! see i don't know what i'm talking about, but you guys would! gives one retirement ideas anyway, no? i know i could stagger into the sunset, wine bottle in hand. wine's the best! i'm going to explore the 2 of the 5 noble grapes i haven't established an opinion of yet; petit verdot and cab franc. thanks for the tip. i'll get back to yous. are you going to explore tequila throughout mexico? i'm going to drink wine now…

  4. Dang. You two know how to LIVE.
    Can't wait for the next installment!

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