Wine, Malibu Style

We had heard that there were a couple places to go wine tasting in Malibu, but never made the effort because it's one of those very closeby things that you never think to actually do. Last Friday, Liz and I both had a weekday to do whatever so we decided to venture up the coast and check it out. We've been to Napa a few times and we go up to Santa Ynez a couple times a year, so while we're FAR from being any sort of experts on the subject we do enjoy our good wine. We always get suckered into joining the wine club of a vineyard we enjoy. I can't keep track of how many places send us vino currently.

ANYWAY...so we set out to Malibu on a gorgeous Friday afternoon.  It's only about 30 miles away so we stopped at the Malibu Kitchen for a tasty deli lunch before venturing on to taste some vino. I had a really great Turkey reuben. (Am I the only one that thinks turkey is soooo much better on a reuben than the traditional corned beef?) Liz had a really bland salad. Oh well, can't win em all.

Our first stop was the Rosenthal Vineyards tasting room. Their tasting room is on the PCH right outside of Malibu...unfortunately not on the actual vineyard property which is up in the hills a couple miles away. After being accosted in the parking lot by some old dude named Joe that claimed to manage the property and vented about the coastal commission for 15 minutes, we stepped into the tasting room.  When we walked in, the two guys pouring asked if Joe scared us and also implied that he bothers many people. I'm left a little unclear as to if he actually had a reason to be there.  After tasting their wines and buying a couple bottles that benefit the Surfrider Foundation, we left the place and ventured five miles up into the mountains to Malibu Family Wines.  

The Malibu Family Wines tasting room is on a vineyard up high in the Santa Monica Mountains.  The tasting room itself was outdoors.  We liked the Rosenthal wines a bit better but still ending up picking up a bottle before heading home.  For some reason we couldn't quite figure out, the guy pouring at Malibu Family was dressed like an extra in Newsies.  Was it a uniform?  Or did he choose to go that route?  We may never know.  

We drove back on the very scenic Mulholland Highway.  By this time it was evening rush hour and our GPS was directing us to the traffic clogged freeway which we smartly avoided.  Stupid GPS.  A third tasting room called will be opening soon in the hills above Malibu called the Cornell Winery. (It's to be located very near the famous Rock Store biker stop on Mulholland Hwy) It'll make for a nice afternoon wine drive without the trek all the way to Santa Ynez.  Liz and I love going up to Santa Ynez--the wine is obviously much better and it's fantastic for a weekend away--but you can't complain about a nearby inexpensive 30 mile trek when you don't want to devote the time and expense for that much more involved journey.   

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