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A Visit To Tin City and ONX Winery- Paso Robles

Ever heard of Tin City? Not to be confused with “Sin City,” a nickname for Las Vegas, Tin City is a contemporary indie wine trail and artisan food and drink hangout built in an industrial park in Paso Robles. The name refers to the metal industrial warehouses that line this walkable area, now filled with winery tasting rooms and eating spots. Don’t miss the artisan sheep’s milk ice cream at Negranti Creamery!

There are roughly 20 small-lot production wineries with tasting rooms in Tin City which makes it a nice day visit. And that’s where we met up with Jeff Strekas of ONX wines to taste and talk.

ONX vineyards
The vineyards at ONX

Founded in 2005 by Orange County (CA) entrepreneur and real estate developer Steve Olson, ONX (pronounced “onyx”) refers to the onyx calcite deposits discovered in the mineral rich soil. The vineyards are located on a 127-acre property in the Templeton Gap District AVA. ONX cultivates 18 different grape varieties, mainly Bordeaux and Rhone white and reds but also Touriga Nacional and Tempranillo (we liked the Tempranillo “Indie Rosé”).

The lineup of ONX wines we tasted.
The lineup of ONX wines we tasted.

Jeff Strekas’s bio says he is a “general misanthrope and curmudgeonly spectator of the “Theater of Life.” We found him pleasant and deeply knowledgeable about the Paso Robles area. He was born and raised in Connecticut and caught the wine bug after traveling to Napa frequently when he worked as a biochemical engineer. After graduating U.C. Davis, he worked in winemaking in Napa and Australia and eventually in Paso Robles. He’s worked at ONX for more than a decade, originally in winemaking and now as Director of Operations and Wine Growing.

Jeff Strekas
Jeff Strekas

ONX’s winemaker is currently Drew Nenow, who worked at his father’s Robert Nenow Winery and aunt and uncle’s Behrens and Hitchcock Wines. Nenow could also be a body double to actor, Tom Cruise, with his wide grin and shock of dark hair.

Drew Nenow

Our visit to ONX included a two night stay at Briarwood Cottage. Owned by the winery, it’s a cozy, well-appointed place to rest your head, walk among the vineyards and write about the day. Info: Briarwood Cottage Vacation Rental — ONX Wines.

Briarcliff Cottage

Tin City is a must stop for your visit to Paso Robles. We wish we had more time to visit more of the tasting rooms and plan to do so when we schedule our return trip.

Here is a link to our podcast with Jeff Strekas on The Connected Table LIVE! Continue reading to learn what we tasted.

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Uncorking Some Napa Valley History with Peter Mondavi Jr.

Do you know what the oldest winery in Napa Valley is? It’s Charles Krug, established in 1861. Its namesake, a German immigrant, started the winery and ran it until he died in 1892. After Charles Krug’s death, the winery was acquired by the family of James Moffitt who were wealthy San Franciscans. In 1943, a former saloon worker -turned- grocer, who successfully started a fruit distribution business called Cesare Mondavi & Sons, purchased the property for $75,000. Imagine what that money represented back them (versus now!).

Charles Krug- Napa Valley’s oldest winery

Today, Charles Krug, more than 150 years later is under the stewardship of Cesare’s grandsons, Peter Mondavi Jr. and Marc Mondavi. Peter grew up on the wine estate and recently shared memories of his grandparents as well as his vision for the future of Charles Krug. #TheConnectedTableLive

Peter Mondavi Jr.

 

Peter joined us on The Connected Table Live May 2. Listen to our visit with Peter Mondavi on iHeart. On the same show, here from  author, Andrew Friedman.

 

 

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Talking Irish Whiskey with Stephen Teeling, The Connected Table LIVE! – April 15

With a history of making spirits that dates back to the 1700’s, Stephen Teeling’s family has probably done more to shape the concept of what we call Irish Whiskey than any other family in Ireland. Now the Teeling family is about to open Dublin’s first new distillery in over 125 years, bringing the legacy of his family’s long relationship with his country’s spirit of choice full circle.

Stephen Teeling
Stephen Teeling

Located in Newmarket, an area of Dublin long associated with brewing and distilling, the new Teeling Distillery features three copper pot stills, reviving a format for distilling based on the old “Dublin style” of making whiskies. Stephen, along with his brother Jack, will oversee the new operation which will focus producing small batch whiskies in 3-4 different interpretations.

Connect:

www.teelingwhiskey.com

http://twitter.com/teelingwhiskey

Melanie Young and David Ransom, Hosts, The Connected Table LIVE!
Melanie Young and David Ransom, Hosts, The Connected Table LIVE!

The Connected Table LIVE! will interview Stephen on Wednesday April 15th, 2015 at 2:00 p.m. ET on W4CY. Listen to the podcast anytime on demand for free at iHeart.com. Here’s the direct link:

http://www.iheart.com/show/209-The-Connected-Table-Live

 

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Award Winning Broadcaster Jennifer English on The Connected Table LIVE! April 15th

Jennifer English
Jennifer English

The table is always the liveliest where Jennifer English is seated.  One of our favorite – and most articulate- food and wine radio personalities, Jennifer joins us on The Connected Table LIVE! April 15th, to dish. The conversation will certainly be lively and varied!

Jennifer is a multi-award winning broadcaster whom we first came to know as founder and host of the Food & Wine Radio Network. Her in-depth interviews and intellectual musings on the craft, history and culture of all areas of food and drink have earned Jennifer the prestigious Gracie Allen Award from The Foundation of American Women in Radio & Television and The James Beard Foundation Award for Best Radio Show.

She’s also hosted food segments for NBC affiliate KVOA TV-4 and the “Bottoms Up Cocktail Hour” on KFNX, both based in Tuscon which Jennifer has called home for many years.

Jennifer currently hosts RSVP Las Vegas on KLAV 1230AM which airs Tuesdays and Thursdays 1pm MST.

A generous and devoted supporter of many culinary initiatives Jennifer proudly served as Vice President of the New Orleans Culinary & Cultural Preservation Society, the organization which put on Tales of the Cocktail, and has been a participant seminar presenter and one of the first live national broadcasters to bring Tales of the Cocktail live from New Orleans.

http://www.vegasallnetradio.com/rsvp.html

https://www.facebook.com/jennifer.english