Crashing Private Parties?

June 4th, 2009

Much to my chagrin, I never heard back from Jim at Domaine & Chandon, so I was a bit disappointed that Lauren & I wouldn’t be going to the ’sold-out’ private cocktail party the winery was hosting. But, nonetheless I knew I had work to catch up on and had to continue working on my business plan. I spent much of my day at The Napa Valley Coffee Roasting Co; a local coffee house that roasts and serves great coffee. Sitting there, I pondered what kind of person I’d be had I stayed in my previous marriage. My ex was never supportive of my freelance endeavors and told me I’d never succeed outside a job. Well pooh on him. I’m so relieved that I’ve taken the path less chosen, even if people don’t call me back. Who knows what I would have been like? I’m here now and that’s all that matters.

I was still feeling a little bit disappointed that my connection to the wineries was a bit fuzzy and again, I wasn’t sure how my business idea would all pan out. But, as God has plans it always works out miraculously in the end. Matt has also been trying to figure out how and when he is going to visit me too, but since he has to work I guess we’ll just wait and see.

After a quick lunch at Giugni’s, I decided to head back home and call it quits. Plus, I had to get ready for a locals game of bocce ball, which I’d never heard of before. Interestingly enough on my drive home, I heard my cellphone jingling. I picked it up only to realize it was Jim, the winemaker, who wanted to know if I was still interested in the cocktail party. You bet your butt I am! I couldn’t wait to tell Lauren the good news. She loves that bubbly stuff.

At 6pm, we met up with a few people that Rory introduced me to at the bocce ball game. Apparently, the locals get together after work every night at the park to play ball, drink, sing karaoke and then do it all over again. There was Sean & Michael (not together) who both sell wine at Napa Valley Farms. Who would say no to a day of fun? We did.

Shortly thereafter, we headed over to Domaine & Chandon, and boy, were there lots of girls wearing skimpy dresses in cold weather. Lauren & I kept chuckling about how women always pay the price for beauty while men get off wearing jeans and sports jackets. Luckily for us, we arrived wearing pants and flat shoes. We sat our butts down, enjoyed the food from the 4 star restaurant attached to the winery and didn’t think much of the party or the mixed champagne cocktails. Jim found me chatting it up with an old couple and enthusiastically introduced me to few folks from the winery, including the sparkling wine maker, PR lady and someone else I can’t remember. They were all very interested in hearing about my business idea and kept insisting that we get together to chat sometime.

While walking through the crowds, Lauren & I ended up chatting with a few people who surprisingly, turned out to be a chef at Bouchon, a gardener for French Laundry, and a former CPA turned pastry chef. I’m finding that the reoccurring theme here in Napa is that its important to enjoy what you do and love where you are. None of these boys are originally from Napa. The evening ended with a quick bite at Bottega where the boys seemed to know the right people. A chef even came out to say hello and ask us ladies if we needed anything else. Lauren quickly jumped at that and replied, “Oh, yes please! Something chocolate-ly would be great!”. It turns out that chef was Michael Chiarello, himself. What a great night, yeah?


Sonya Lee

Since a child, Sonya has been traveling from the corners of Canada to the far east Asia. Born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, she led a normal family life with her brother, mother and dad. A well received job opportunity in Hong Kong for her father put the compass in action from a young age. Sonya loves good food, and I mean GOOD simple food. She loves an occasional drink, be merry and enjoy the good times. Having recently healed herself from a large ruptured cyst, her favorite foods include fresh carrot juice, grilled vegetables, sauteed portabello mushrooms and truffle french fries. Her philosophy? Healthy food makes a healthy body. Read more on the Editor page. When she's not fretting over WAFT, she runs a small design agency called mowie media and shares the good times with her dog, Monster and 3 cats Sabi, Kaeli & Misty.

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