Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Wine Tasting In Your Very Own Neighborhood at Total Wine!

Have you guys ever shopped at Total Wine & More?  They have every wine and liquor ever, plus more beer varieties than you'd ever believe!

But, they also offer free ($0.10 charity donation) wine tastings on Fridays - Sundays!

AND, they host wine tasting and beer tasting classes each month! ($20 per person)

Wine tasting in your very own neighborhood!

My friend and I were invited to attend a wine tasting class last week, which was so much fun!

I (and a +1) was invited to attend a class for free, in exchange for this blog post and other social media mentions

Each class has a theme - this was wines from Oregon and Washington.

There are an abundance of snacks - cheeses, meat, crackers, bread, fruit, and chocolate! (What more can one want with wine?!) Bottles of water (and an intermission/bathroom break!) are also provided, which were ideal, haha.

The class is held in a special room of the store, and your host shares history and fun facts about the wines in a slide show presentation as you get to taste many regional wines (like 10, actually! - don't forget to eat something! ;) ) Well worth the $20 fee!  Many of the cheese and chocolates went particularly well with certain wines, and we learned a lot about food/wine pairings, as well as the history of how the wines are made.

The class is two hours, with a short break halfway though.

Our host, Kirk, at the Laguna Hills location, was a sommelier, and shared a lot of great information, along with the wine.

The wineries and the store provided us with a big packet of information, including a price and detail list of each wine we tried.  This came in handy, as we marked which ones we liked as we went along, so we remembered which were our favorites to buy at the end!

We also were provided with a flavor wheel. This was a fun way to figure out what we were tasting in each wine, whether it be cocoa, berries, oak, or vanilla.  Ehem, SOME items on the wheel are less than pleasant, and you don't want to know if the grapes were grown in or near those items, so we just pretended those didn't exist. Ew. Moving on!!

When the tasting class is over, you can buy any of the wines featured in the class for 10% off!

My favorites were the Kudos Pinot Noir ($24) and the Radius Chardonnay (a bargain $9!)

Plus, once you are inside this huge, amazing store, you can't help but wander the aisles, pointing out interesting and humorous craft beer labels, every single flavor ever of flavored vodka in every brand, mini-bar sized bottles of all the hard alcohol, as well, including a baby Patron bottle! Haha, so cute!, and more wines that you could imagine! It is so fun to just walk through the store! Bet you can't walk out without buying a few things to try!

This is such a fun girl's night out or date night, without even leaving town!

Check out Total Wine & More's complete listing of store locations, each which have their own wine tastings, and wine and beer classes, and make your way down to your local Total Wine store!

Calander of Classes by location and type

Also, be sure to follow Total Wine on Instagram Facebook, and Twitter !

Plus, if you are Local:
Total Wine - Laguna Hills
Total Wine - Tustin 
on Facebook, 


Total Wine SoCal on Twitter

to keep up to date on local store events!!
Or, do a search for your local store on Facebook or Twitter, and follow along!

Thanks to Total Wine for this opportunity. I hope you check out these awesome classes and tastings!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Luck of The Irish Green Velvet Whoopie Pies for St. Patrick's Day!

Top O' the mornin' to ya!
and Happy Friday!

My go to fave and festive St. Patrick's Day treat is still these red green velvet whoopie pies (read: cake-like sandwich cookie) I made a few years back!

Red velvet is just a chocolate buttermilk cake with a shit ton of food coloring, haha. So, changing the color won't change the flavor at all!
Food coloring isn't my favorite thing ever, but it does make things fun and festive!

Also, I'd definitely add some gold shimmer dust to the tops of these, a la my Oscars Party cupcakes with gold dust because, well, why not?!

Full Recipe Here: St. Patrick's Day Green Velvet Whoopie Pies

Hope you all have a glorious weekend in the sunshine!! (oh...or, if you aren't in California, I think you are hating life in the snow still right apologies...just eat more whoopie pies!!)

I am off to Disneyland this weekend with the family! Woohoo!!