Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Life is Sweet in Napa Valley with Silver Trident Winery

Life is Sweet in Napa Valley - Intimate Micro-Experiences in the World of Wine, Food, and the Art of Relaxation (PART TWO)

By Kat Thomas, Edible Skinny

Yesterday I wanted wine.
Today I’m drinking wine.
Follow your dreams…
And drink up bitches!!!

Sip sip hooray!!!  Part Two of our FAB trip through Napa Valley (and a big shout out to Beau Wine Tours for helping plan out all these AMAZING winery adventures!!!)

So here’s to life being delicious, all your moments being postcard worthy, and Cabernet all day, everyday in Napa Valley!!!


Returning to the hustle and bustle of Yountville (or what Napa Valley calls hustle and bustle...), we were greeted at Silver Trident Winery by the glowing Mallory.  Intimate and inviting, Silver Trident Winery has appointment only wine tastings in their beautifully warm Tuscan-style stone building.  Their “Tasting Home” consists of a living room, dining room and library, all furnished with Ralph Lauren Home.  There’s no tasting bar, no standing on your feet, no rush, at all.  Crafting small production wines (2-3k cases per year) created in the heart of the Napa Valley, Silver Trident Winery has the catchphrase of: “Big Personality, Small Production.  Endless Passion.”

Along with working at Silver Trident Winery, Mallory runs Vine Living blog, so she give us the skinny on it all!  She explained to Kelly and I that Silver Trident Winery is the passion project of Bob Binder, cofounder of Oceania Cruises.  Binder helped make this luxury cruise line’s food and beverage program one of the finest at sea, collaborating along the way with such food luminaries as Jacques Pépin, Bon Appétit, and Wine Spectator.  Binder resides in Napa with his partner Walter Jost.  Mallory gushed, “they are the nicest sweetest men.”  In 2009 Binder and Jost decided to made 100 cases Cabernet.  The next year they added 100 cases of Pinot Noir.

They opened their “Tasting Home” in 2012, with a whole new approach to wine pairing: great wines with the world-class home decor of Ralph Lauren.  In the past, the iconic fashion company had crafted Ralph Lauren Home-furnished suites on two of Oceanic largest ships.  These 2,500-square-foot suites, with their ebony baby grand pianos and mahogany and quartzite bars, were specifically decorated to “capture the feeling of Ralph Lauren’s passions for sailing, adventure, and travel."  While working with Ralph Lauren Home, Binder learned the company was looking for an opportunity to open a northern California showroom. That got him to thinking about the possibility of offering wine tasting in a home setting.

Wine tasting in the town of Yountville is a unique experience because the Yountville Town Council requires wine tasting rooms in town to use at least 25% of their floor space for retail sales of items other than wine.  You will find wine tasting rooms in town that also include wine accessories, artwork, antiques, and even cookware (shoutout to our friends at Hestan!).  So when it came to the decorating of Silver Trident’s “Tasting Home,” Binder and Jost decided to utilize the luxury home master once again! ;-)

To continue the concept of the “Tasting Home,” Silver Trident collaborated with chef Sarah Scott to create food pairings for each of their five wines (since homes traditionally serve food…). Sarah has been cooking in the Napa Valley since the early 1980s and has developed a talent for food and wine pairings.  She is the co-author of a cookbook with Connie Green titled The Wild Table: Seasonal Foraged Food.  Noshes we sampled at Silver Trident include: Herbed Labneh and Goat Cheese, Mushroom Duxelle, and Piquillo Pimento Cheese Spread.  Yummm (with 3Ms!!!)!

Some wine favorites from our time at Silver Trident Winery include:                  

  • Apollo's Folly Rosé (2017) Complex, yet ready to play!  Ripe red raspberry and watermelon make this “Paris, in the 1920s, in a glass.”  Sipping this Rosé was the perfect compliment to the black and white photography of Tunbridge Gallery throughout the Silver Trident’s “Tasting Home.”  Classically clean, it knows what it wants.
  • Benevolent Dictator Pinot Noir (2015) Classic Russian River Pinot Noir with flavorings of cherry, cola, and pomegranate.  All aged in French Oak, 40% of it new.  A great fireside wine with a calico cat in your lap!
  • Playing With Fire (2015)  A red that changes every year… because Silver Trident is a small winery they consider this their take some chances, break some rules, and play with fire.  Remember how your parents always told you never to play with fire?  And remember how that just made it a little bit more exciting?  Silver Trident chooses a variety of berries, a variety of barrel toasts, and experiments with fermentation temperatures.  Playing with fire can spark some deliciously thrilling results (and create my favorite wine at their “Tasting Home.)”

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Turkey Ho! Giving Thanks for the Sandbox Cafe in Surf City, NJ

Turkey Ho!

Edible Skinny was LUCKY enough to attend an AMAZING Thanksgiving dinner this year at the Sandbox Cafe in Surf City, NJ!!!

There we were treated to a FREE, and YES you read that right FREE Thanksgiving dinner! The Sandbox Cafe for the last three years has opened up their doors to anyone who wants a FREE dinner!

It all started in 2016 with a simple post: “Think you have no place to go for Thanksgiving dinner?  Well, you're wrong.  Head over to the Sandbox Cafe in Surf City and have a free Thanksgiving dinner from the owners and staff of the restaurant at the 14th Street and beach.”  That first year they had 40 guest attend. 

Well in the last three years their numbers have escalated!  In 2017, the second year, their number more than quadrupled to 170 guests.  In 2018 the Sandbox Cafe served 250 FREE Thanksgiving dinners!

From those who might not have family in town to those who is bank accounts might not have been large enough to make a proper Thanksgiving dinner the Sandbox Cafe welcomed their arms to all.

Our hodgepodge group of four ended up at their doors because my Mom, Letty Thomas, will be moving across country in a few weeks to California; all of the kitchen supplies had already been packed leading to a non-existent turkey dinner...

And so we were greeted by a sign on Thanksgiving Day that brought a cheerful moment of thanks:

    Everyone at the Sandbox Cafe is Our Family….
    ...A Heart Felt Welcome to Our Thanksgiving Feast
    ... As a Community and Family Relax and Enjoy!

And then we feasted, feasted, and more feasted…  Our meal consisted of a soup or salad course, a dinner full plate of turkey meat, stuffing, green beans, glaze carrots, roasted sweet potatoes, followed by an array of different dessert choices (we made the most intelligent decision and decided on one of each).

The Sandbox Cafe has evolved to be a true community adventure with each portion of the meal donated by another local restaurant and/or business.  Other local establishments that got in on the action included: Shore Fire Grill (Cornbread Stuffing), Herb, Cheryl, Armstrong and Ocean Spray (Home Cranberry Sauce), ScoJo’s (Butternut Squash), Country Kettle Fudge (Oyster Crackers), Wallys (Potatoes), Greenhouse Cafe (Vegetable Medley), Kaiser-Din Foundation (Apple and Pumpkin Pies), Wod Hod (Ice Cream), along with Lee Farms, Silveri & Sons, and Tom LoBianco of U.S. Foods.  

AND along with the serving the meal completely for FREE, the Sandbox Cafe had a donation box to help the hungry through Saint Francis Community Center’s Food Pantry.  Talk about celebrating the community in all forms!

So let’s give thanks to the Sandbox Cafe and all the great work they’ve done for the community! ;-)