The second day of our trip was our actual anniversary and a gloomy day, at least weather-wise. Just about everywhere we went, people apologized to us for the rain, as if it was somehow their fault. We spent the first part of the morning browsing around some of the shops in Occidental–actually, probably all of the shops in Occidental (it’s a very tiny town) and then headed out for some wine tasting. Our first stop was Hartford Family Winery, the maker of my favorite chardonnay ever. Normally, I can take or leave chardonnay, but this stuff is freaking delicious.
Since it was our anniversary, some bubbly was in order, so our next destination was Korbel, where we did a tasting, ate lunch, and took a photo re-creation opportunity. Watch the ivy grow (or disappear, depending on which order you view the photos)!
While wine tasting, it’s important to cleanse the palate, so we visited Russian River Brewing Company and split a flight of every beer they had on tap. It looks like a great deal of beer, but it actually works out to a little over a pint for each of us. Even so, I collected countless badges as I logged the beers on Untappd, including the “Take It Easy” badge, which includes the tagline, “Either you must be sampling or really like beer!” I began to wonder if an intervention badge would pop up next.
With our palates cleansed, we were ready to taste more wine–more bubbly actually–and we proceeded to Iron Horse Vineyards. During our tasting there, we got to chatting with the couple next to us and discovered that it was also their fifteenth anniversary. OMG–anniversary twins!
For dinner that evening, we had reservations at Drake’s Sonoma Coast. When we arrived, the host informed us that the restaurant had lost power (owing to downed lines from strong winds) but if we still cared to dine there, they were offering a limited menu. We were game (and hadn’t prepared a backup plan), so she showed us to our table. The dining room has several large windows that look out onto Bodega Bay, and since the sun had not yet set (not that it could be seen), the room was still fairly well lit when we arrived.
At a nearby table, an indignant woman who seemed to think the restaurant employees had cut the power to spite her proclaimed, “I just want to eat what I want to eat!” On some level, I do understand that sentiment, but sometimes the power goes out and you have to make the best of it. She was having none of it, though. She left the restaurant (and the rest of her party) in a ridiculous huff.
Ian and I, on the other hand, had a lovely meal and speculated that this would be one of our more memorable anniversaries. Members of the waitstaff donned LED necklaces (which I guess they just happened to have sitting around?) to increase their visibility. As the evening wore on and we were among the few patrons remaining, we collected more and more candles on our table (accidental romantic lighting!). As we strained our eyes to read the dessert menu, I wondered how the lighting situation in the kitchen was being dealt with. However the staff did it, they managed the whole situation very well. We left full and happy and with an amusing story to boot!