The first ever OC Wine Fest kicked off on a slightly damp Saturday last weekend, but that did not stop anyone from having a good time. The event provided a multitude of wines in a casual and comfortable outdoor setting. Based at the Stone’s Throw winery, many people came out to drink wine, beer and enjoy some tasty bites.
OC Wine Fest 2018
Local wineries such as Rancho Capistrano Winery were there to pour delicious varietals. Their winery is a gem and a favorite of mine.
We had a chance to meet the proprietors of Cowboy Canyon Winery. After listening to their story and hearing about the winery’s upcoming events made me wonder how I have not been to a tasting there there yet. Their wines were divine and the winery sounds like itis in a beautiful setting in Silverado Canyon. We are adding it to the list to visit.
The folks at Wedell Winery had a nice sampling to offer that day, and did I mention it was unlimited pours? This central coast winery offered some wonderful Pinots and Syrahs and their wines are available in many restaurants and wine stores in Southern California.
The day of discovery continued as we had a chance to try Orange County-based Color Wine. At the helm is Parker Theo, a twenty-five year old entrepreneur whose started making wine as a project. The name comes from the fact that the first thing you do in a wine tasting is to check the color of the wine, according to Parker. The Rosé I tasted was lovely and refreshing!
Besides the nearly three dozen wineries, there were cider vendors and breweries as well.
Wine seminars were also available both days of the festival. There were also vendors with wine-related merchandise and I really wanted to take this sculpture home!
The first every OC Wine Fest was a great success and a lovely experience. Proceeds from this inaugural event helped raise awareness for the OC Wine Fest’s charitable partner, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
The KLOS Sabroso Taco Fest returns to Orange County!
The KLOS Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco & Music Festival Returns! We loved this festival last year. It has all the things you could ask for in a great festival -craft beer, lots of tasty tacos, Lucha Libre style wrestling, great music, all in a beachside setting.
The KLOS Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco & Music Festival powered by Gringo Bandito returns to Doheny State Beach in Dana Point as its first stop on its new multicity road trip.
The Sabroso Taco Fest is in its fifth year in Southern California and festival-goers will have the opportunity to sample over 150 brews and a variety of delectable tacos while watching lucha libre style wrestling, playing games, and enjoying live performances by The Offspring, and other bands including Pennywise, The Vandals, Me First and The Gimme Gimmes, Unwritten Law, and Los Kung Fu Monkeys. Produced by California’s most successful and respected craft beer festival producer Brew Ha Ha Productions and premier music festival production company Synergy Global Entertainment (SGE), KLOS Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco & Music Festival bring together a diverse array of supreme breweries and the region’s top chefs and restaurants to spotlight the West Coast’s growing craft beer community (see photo of participating breweries below).
Food fans will of course have the opportunity to savor the scrumptious tacos provided by Fiesta Gourmet (VIP only), Chicana Vegana, Panchos Tacos, Good Fellas Taco Catering, and more. Chronic Tacos, will also serve their fan-favorite tacos, filled with choice of veggies or meat. Many participating restaurants are serving new and exciting taco creations like Romega’s alligator stuffed taco and Chef TLC’s Sidewalk Café’s Korean street tacos with kimchi for some innovative tacos at the Sabroso Taco Fest. To top off the array of flavors, those with a sweet tooth will be satisfied with Coned Ice Cream’s beer-infused ice creams.
While at the festival. attendees are invited to sample all flavors of The Offspring lead singer Dexter Holland’s top rated hot sauce – Gringo Bandito!
New at the Sabroso Taco Fest this year: In 2018, the Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco & Music Festival brand expands to include dates in Sacramento, Denver, Albuquerque, Tucson, Auburn, and Portland during April and May.
Sabroso Taco Fest Ticket Information
Doheney State Beach-Saturday, April 7
Tickets start at $65.50 and VIP Lounge + Early Entry Tickets are sold out. Day-of Festival General Admission Tickets (if available) will be $75.50 per person. Check out the Sabroso Fest website for tickets.
Complimentary craft beer tastings last until 4 p.m. and tacos will be available for purchase while supplies last. Festival General Admission.
Sponsors for KLOS Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco & Music Festival powered by Gringo Bandito include SUBARU, Sweet James Bergener, Gringo Bandito, Avery Brewing, Rockstar Energy Drink, Chronic Tacos, Milagro Tequila, Cosmic Fog and many more. The festival producers encourage attendees to drink responsibly.
A Stones Throw Winery is located at:
29943 Camino Capistrano
San Juan Capistrano, CA
Saturday – March 10, 2018 1-5pm
Sunday – March 11, 2018, 1-5pm
a commemorative tasting glass
unlimited wine and beer sampling
Water, coffee & food
OC Wine Fest Parking is available for $5 at:
Saddleback Valley Christian School, 26333 Oso Rd., San Juan Capistrano
Serra Catholic High School, 26351 Junipero Serra Rd., San Juan Capistrano
We’ve got a promo code for you – OC Wine Festival Promo Code
Purchase an all-access ticket to this weekend’s inaugural OCWineFest and you’ll get to sample wines from an additional 14 boutique wineries. Get a 30% discount when you use promo code OCSpecial at checkout. Head to the OCWineFest website for details.
Mark your calendars! The sixth annual Orange County Paws FUR Pink run/walk is coming back soon.
Looking for a great way to get some exercise with your pet? Check out the Orange County Paws FUR Pink® run/walk will be held on Sunday, February 18, at Irvine Regional Park in Orange. Whether you and your pet want to walk in celebration of life or to honor a friend or relative, it is a great way to raise money for a good cause and make some friends in the process.
“It’s an honor to be chosen for the sixth year as a charity partner of Paws FUR Pink,” said Lisa Wolter, executive director of Komen Orange County. “Every day in Orange County, five women are diagnosed with breast cancer and one dies from the disease. The funds raised at Paws Fur Pink are critical to save both human and canine lives.” Since the event’s inception, close to $50,000 has been raised, the equivalent of 400 mammograms.
Partial proceeds from Paws FUR Pink® will benefit Susan G. Komen Orange County to support breast health education, services and research, as well as The National Canine Cancer Foundation. Five percent of the net proceeds from the pledge money raised and a $5 donation per 5K and 1-Mile will be allocated post-event to the charity of the participant’s choice.
“We, at Book That Event, place an emphasis on women’s health and wellness and understand that cancer affects not only our daughters, sisters, friends and mothers, but the pets in our lives as well. We created an event that includes dogs because we understand how the love from our pets can make us feel better,” said Lisa Scolman, co-founder of Paws FUR Pink. “We’re dedicated to supporting organizations that provide the necessary research, treatment, care, hope and inspiration to those affected by cancer.”
The event features:
Hearty Hound 5K Fun Run/Walk
Dawdling Doodle 1-Mile Walk
FURever Yours Expo w/Yoga in the Park and pet demonstrations
PAWsitively Pink Costume Contest
Each participant will receive a custom Paws FUR Pink branded participation t-shirt, wine glass, doggy frisbee and sunglasses.
All events on Sunday start/finish at Irvine Regional Park, 1 Irvine Park Road, Orange, CA 92869.
If one of your goals this year is saving money this year, you might like this list of Museum Free Admission Days for Los Angeles and Orange County Museums.
Here is a list of Orange County and Los Angeles County Museums and the dates that they offer free admission. Website links to the museums on this list will give you additional information on parking, operating hours, tours and special events. Note that if you have a large group, you may want to check out the museum website to get additional information.
Southern California has many museums and offers an educational experience for the entire family. Many have eateries within their facilities or close by. I always love to peruse the gift shops for unique gifts for friends.
Note that museum information is subject to change so be sure to check the museum website before you go.
Summer is here and the weather is getting warm. For those days where you have spent all your funds, here is a list of free museum days in the Los Angeles and Orange County areas that offer complimentary admission at least once per week.
There is nothing like exploring a good museum on a warm summer day. And while admission is free at these museums, many of these fine organizations will accept donations and it is important to support our local arts.
Refer to the corresponding link to get information about location and events.
Tips to pack like a pilot so you can travel light.
8 Hacks to Pack Like a Pilot
We have all seen the pilots fleeing through the airport with tiny little suitcases on wheels. Now that may not be realistic for most of us when we are packing for a trip, but here are some hacks that we have received from flight staff that you can use to pack like a pilot.
Fold and roll.
There are tons of ways to pack a good suitcase, but there is nothing like the fold and roll. Not only do you save time on ironing once you reach your destination, but you can free up lots of space in your bag. Most clothing is made to roll up without much wrinkling.
Fill up space.
You have to make sure to use every available inch of space in your suitcase so stick to the fold and roll. Also, here is the time to tuck items like socks, undergarments, and other smaller items into your shoes for maximum room. Roll belts in shoes or along the outer edge of your suitcase.
When you think you are going to need multiple gadgets on your trips such as maps, GPS, a camera, or a video recorder, try to limit yourself to just one gadget that does it all. These days our smartphones and tablets cover all of those bases and then some.
Invest in quality.
One of the best things you can do is buy a quality piece of luggage, especially if you are a frequent traveler. The wear and tear our bags get from going airport to airport can take a toll. So, go for a hard case suitcase with sturdy wheels and it will last so much longer.
Pack just 3 pairs.
Of shoes, that is. All you really need is 3 of your most functional shoes on any trip. Pack your comfortable dress shoes, a pair of exercise shoes, and of course some sort of sandal or flip flop so that you can avoid walking around on the hotel carpet.
Keep it fresh and clean.
One of the best tips anyone can use on any trip is to pack either a small bag of potpourri or a few scented dryer sheets inside your luggage. Even tuck some inside your shoes and place your shoes in a large zipped plastic bag to keep them freshen up. Also, storing your shoes in bags will keep the dirty soles away from your clean clothes.
Wear your best onboard.
Everyone loves to be comfortable on a flight, so make sure when you are packing you leave out your favorite outfit and layer up a little so you can leave room in your bag for more items. If you are going to a colder destination, take along your coat and wear a sweater onboard so you don’t bulk up your bag. If you bring a hat, you may want to wear it so it doesn’t get crushed.
Wash on the go.
A great way to be able to pack a little less and carry a lighter road while traveling is to do a load of laundry at your hotel if you can. This is a huge deal if you have kids and all of their dirty clothes to contend with as well as your own. Just check ahead of time that your hotel has laundry facilities or nearby place you can do a quick load, if needed.
Gringo Bandito Hot sauce has announced that they have partnered with Fullerton, California’s Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen to create a special taco for their new menu. I had a chance to try the Cali Bandito Tacos at a media preview.
Thee tacos are made with house made tortillas and filled with carne asada that have been marinated in a sauce that includes Gringo Bandito Red sauce. The tacos are topped with cheddar cheese, sour cream and avocado creme. If you are not familiar with the Gringo Bandito nameand the rock star affiliation, read on.
The tacos were delightfully fresh and the marinated beef was tender and nicely seasoned. There was a bit of spice, but it was not overwhelming. Paired with fresh tortilla chips and salsa and served with beans, it was an awesome meal. It was especially good with a Modern Times IPA.
This was my first time to Slidebar Fullerton. Sadly, it was not in Fullerton when I attended CSUF because I would have been there every week as the vibe was cool.
Both Gringo Bandito and Slidebar will be at OC Weekly’s popular Summerfest on June 17th at Newport Dunes.
If you did not know, Gringo Bandito Hot Sauce was founded by Dexter Holland (frontman for the awesome Southern California group, The Offspring) in 2004. Sidenote, I love The Offspring, and their hits Your Gonna Go Far, Kid, and Come Out and Play are seriously good tunes.
Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen was founded in 2006 by Jeremy Popoff. They offer live music, great food and drinks, in a spacious open air setting. It is located at:
122 E Commonwealth Ave
Fullerton, CA 92832-1909
Gringo Bandito is now sold in Australia, Japan, Canada, Finland, Switzerland, UK, Poland, Germany, Belgium, Hungary and coast to coast in the US. It is also in the top ten on Amazon.com’s highest customer rated hot sauces.
Vienna is the capital of Austria and is a beautiful and stately city. Vibrant with culture, fine dining and music, there is a lot to do when visiting this magnificent republic. The people we encountered throughout our trip were very friendly and helpful. Nearly everyone we talked to spoke English, which made communication easy.
Transportation is quite easy as they have a great transit system and many areas we visited were walkable. You can take a cab easily as well, for a reasonable price. The city center is surrounded by residential districts and dotted with parks and squares.
We spent 5 days in Vienna and based on my experience, these are my top ten things to do in Vienna.
The famous Naschmarkt is a lovely open-air market with tons of food stalls, cafes, and stores. A must-visit for any food lover, the Naschmarkt is a great place to find some cheese and sausages and wine and set off for a picnic lunch. Hours are longer in the spring and summer than they are the rest of the year.
I loved perusing the market stalls and we stopped here for lunch of chicken schnitzel and fries.
Spanish Riding School
At this equestrian riding school, you can watch a training session, take a guided tour or catch a performance. The Lipizzaner Stallions are Europe’s oldest breed of horses and they are beautiful in movement and stature. Performances fun to watch if you have a love of horses and history. No indoor photography is allowed here.
Similar to Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, this street offers luxury shopping fabulous restaurants and a nice view of people walking the city. There are luxury boutiques and department stores. While you will find Gucci and Louis Vuitton here now, these streets were once the home of composers Haydn and Chopin. Walking around in this metropolitan city is a lovely way to spend a couple of hours. Stop for lunch and one of the many highly-rated restaurants and enjoy a good meal.
You can also find plenty of great shopping in the city center on Mariahilfer Strasse. You will find specialty shops, souvenir shops and department stores on this pedestrian only street.
St. Stephens Church
This Gothic church dating back to the 13th century is majestic and sits right in the center of the city. It is a beautiful tribute to the elegance that is Vienna. They have guided tours of the church and its art treasures. You can enter the church for free, but it will cost you a few Euros to get into the main section. The Cathedral is stunning inside and offers tours of their treasury and catacombs with a combination ticket. Check the schedule for choir performances and Catholic services which are offered.
Hofburg Palace Imperial Apartments
These beautiful royal apartments are as lavish as Versailles, though not as big. I suggest you take a tour of the apartments and the Hofburg Treasury collection for an unforgettable glimpse of this long-reigning family. The stories of Franz Josef and Sisi are entirely captivating and tragic. For more information visit http://www.hofburg-wien.at/en.html.
The Opera House
Beautifully magnificent and world-renowned for the classical performances of opera. It has also been the location of movie premiers and musicals. There are Live Opera evenings on the square in which you can watch the opera on a large screen outside of the Opera for free during April – June, and September. You can view the schedule here.
This summer residence of the Habsburgs is another beautiful residence filled with elaborate artwork, furnishings and the Vienna zoo, which is considered to be the oldest zoo in the world. It is also where Mozart gave his first concert at the age of six.
One of the most popular desserts, the Sacher-Torte, was born here. A wonderfully decadent chocolate cake made with apricot jam and served with the most amazing whipped cream deserves a spot on your itinerary. I recommend sitting outside and enjoying your cake while watching passersby. Enjoy it with a cup of Viennese coffee and savor the wonderful moment that it is sure to be.
Cocktails at the Ritz
The rooftop bar at the Ritz Carlton is a fabulous place to enjoy the view and a libation at the same time. We stayed at the Ritz Carlton on our visit and loved everything about it. Wonderful guest rooms, great dining, friendly service and an excellent location make this a great choice if looking for luxury accommodations.
Take a stroll in the Vienna Burggarten in Vienna’s city center or Museum Quarter. Visit the Art Historical and the Natural Historical Museum and gardens for a scenic afternoon.
There are many things to do just outside of Vienna as well, but that’s for another post. For other articles on Vienna, check out:
Of all the things there are to do, most people would agree that travel is at the top of their list of favorite things to do. Having traveled extensively over the last 25 years, I have been fortunate enough to have visited many cities and countries in the US and beyond.
I went on my first trip to Europe as a senior in high school and caught the travel bug then and have back to Europe several times since then and have fallen in love with several cities there. I am a writer, mom and food lover, who lives in Southern California. I have shared some of my stories and tips on my lifestlye blog, but this space is dedicated to sharing the following;
Suggested Travel Itineraries
Culinary Events and Travel
Food and Drink Events in Southern California
This site is in the process of being built, but we are happy you are here from the beginning!
Stay tuned for travel and dining tips for Southern California and beyond. In the meantime, please follow us on Facebook,Instagram and Twitter.