Saturday, June 27, 2009
Last night we were closed in on all sides by Friday evening traffic on the 101 highway just northwest of Los Angeles. Depressing strip malls and chain restaurants were all the eye could see.
Then we took the Mulholland Drive exit and the roads suddenly became twisty, romantic lane ways hidden in the magic hills of Topanga Canyon, a million miles from Los Angeles.
The roads reminded me of the close turns and roadside thrills of driving in Greece. Dry but beautiful indigenous plants, soaring rock formations and shady grottoes perfect for coyotes to rest.
Our dinner hosts were witty and well-traveled. They had a mesmerizing view of the green hills and steep canyons from their back deck. David told me he first fell in love with wine by drinking volumes of German and French wines while he was in college in Scotland.
Topanga is surely much warmer than Germany but the steep hillsides are similar. He wistfully shared that he would love to plant some vines on his land. I encouraged him to reach out to other local wineries who might be willing to tend his vines in exchange for the resulting grapes.
That reminded of a wonderful Topanga Vineyards wine I had a few months back.
Sandy Garber and her husband, Randy Meyer first started Topanga Vineyards by growing 90 vines on their property in Topanga. Now they have expanded and buy much of their fruit from the Central Coast. It is unclear if they currently use any Topanga grown grapes but they still live there.
Sandy also runs her own Los Angeles based wine distributorship, Garber and Company.
Topanga Vineyards Grenache Blanc 2008 $18.99
was fresh and lively. Aromas of lemon and beeswax dripping with honey were matched by luscious stonefruit flavors and a nice acidity on the finish.
Posted by Amy Atwood at 8:54 AM