Bianchi Winery
The Latest


Passport Weekend with the Far Out Wineries

February 17, 2009

What do you expect on a weekend that combines a Holiday for sweethearts, a 3-day break from work, and a festival of sorts? Record breaking crowds of wine tasters on Paso Robles' westside, of course! Each year over President's Day Weekend, the Far Out Wineries of Westside Paso Robles host a benefit to raise money for The Wellness Community who provides cancer support and education for patients and their families. For a nominal $25 donation, participants receive free tasting at 16 local wineries and often receive special discounts or reserve tasting priviledges. Last year, their... [Read more...]

Sweet Earth Treats Are Sweet to the Earth and Its People

February 12, 2009

This Valentine’s Day, I’ll be indulging in guilt-free chocolate. Alas, all the calories will still be there, but I can rest assured that Sweet Earth Organic Chocolates represent little harm to the sweet earth or its inhabitants. Sweet Earth was launched by Tom Neuhaus, a Cal Poly professor who not only talks the talk, but walks the walk. The chocolate used is all certified organic, which has obvious benefits for the environment, but it’s also fair trade – meaning that the cacao beans have been purchased directly from growers or their cooperatives for a higher... [Read more...]

Finds From Fancy Foodland

January 26, 2009

Once again, an entire pavilion at the annual Fancy Food Show in San Francisco was dedicated to “Natural and Organics” … but that’s only part of the good news. The rest is the huge number of natural and organic products that could be found throughout the whole trade show. This segment of the food world has definitely blossomed beyond its roots in obscure health food stores, tie dye, and incense. Read More >> [Read more...]

SIP Wines Are Spot On

November 18, 2008

The recent 12th Annual Great Wine Escape Weekend presented by the Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association offered the chance to taste some of the region’s best, especially when it came to stellar cool climate varietals such as Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and even Syrah (yes, Syrah, but more about that in a minute). There were several standout wines at Sunday’s “Grand Finale” event, and some of CCVT's SIP Certified vineyards were definitely in the mix! The 2005 Paraiso Vineyards Eagles Peak Chardonnay was probably the best Chard of the weekend, showing spot-on crispness and acidity... [Read more...]

Does Sustainability = Yummy?

October 7, 2008

Is the following statement true or false? “Sustainability can be oh so yummy!” Definitely true when you match up the culinary skills of Artisan restaurant in Paso Robles with some of Central Coast Vineyard Team’s pilot “SIP” winegrowers such as Paraiso, Laetitia, Hahn Estates, Halter Ranch, D’Anbino, Saucelito Canyon, and Wolff Vineyards. Owned and hands-on operated by the Kobayashi family, Artisan is one of the hottest tables in town, and not just because of Chef Chris Kobayashi’s creative, contemporary take on classic, comfort food. The family strives for sustainability throughout its menus, using farmers’ market... [Read more...]

St. Bernardus, please.

October 3, 2008

My trip to Bel Frites peaked curiousity on the entire subject of food and beer and left me wondering where a Beer novice like myself could find advice on pairings for this well-known, yet mystified beverage. And while I find it way too easy to pass up a Coors Light for a night cap, the Belgian beers at Bel Frites made me feel like a regular beer aficionado. What I didn't know, is that my interest in wine pairings already pointed me into the right direction. On my very own bookshelf lies the 2006 Wine... [Read more...]

Bel Frites makes me happy!

September 29, 2008

In a recent blog, I recapped my adventurous trip to Slow Food Nation, where guests of San Francisco spent 3 days celebrating "just and sustainable" foods. After my guilty consumption of fast food en route to the event, I redeemed myself with a delectable, slow food, potato treat. Do you know the difference between a good ol' American (french) fry and a traditional Belgian frite? The answer lies in preparation. A visit to San Luis Obispo's locally-owned Bel Frites provided the answer. "Europeans know when they hear the word 'frite,' their expectations are quite high,"... [Read more...]

Halter Ranch Vineyard . . . AKA “Club Mitch”

September 20, 2008

In a world ridden with America franchises, I find myself starving for genuine character. Isn't it  hilarious that I can get the same cheeseburger in Australia, which is halfway across the world, as I can from the drive-through in Paso Robles, California? Halter Ranch Vineyard is living proof that our ever-globalizing world is not completely void of uniqueness and distinction. Flicking my blinker on and rolling into the shaded entry of the ranch, I am immediately taken back to a simpler time. I park next to the towering 1885 Victorian home that you might recognize... [Read more...]

Slowing Down for Slow Food Nation

September 9, 2008

On my way to Slow Food Nation, a celebration of "sustainable and just" farmers, foods, and lifestyles, I found myself, well, being a typical, fast-paced American. Running a bit behind schedule, there I was, mobbing up Highway 101 in my S.U.V. blaring John Butler Trio's Grand National Album in attempt to get stoked for the Slow Food Rocks concert. Whining about our growling tummies and in a hurry to essentially hit Bay Area traffic, my boyfriend/travel partner suggested In-N-Out. Besides, since when was a Number 2 Combo not a good idea? Read More >> [Read more...]

Why We Should All Become Renegade Lunch Ladies!

August 23, 2008

If the current state of our nation’s food system makes you a bit queasy, you’re lucky you didn’t attend the presentation by Ann Cooper as part of this year’s Pallet to Palate event. But then again, attendance should have been required for anyone who has some misgivings about our food, especially what we’re feeding our kids. The self-described “former white tablecloth celebrity chef” now billed as the “Renegade Lunch Lady,” Cooper has completely overhauled the school lunch program of the Berkley School System. When she arrived just three years ago, the main tools of the... [Read more...]