When’s the last time you’ve ever seen anybody cook with grapes?

I was watching Master Chef last night, and a strange reality dawned on me.  When is the last time any contestant used grapes to cook with, garnish with, or flavor with?  Honestly, I don’t think EVER.  One by one, my mind started racing through the myriad episodes I’ve seen, and I couldn’t come up with one example.  Strawberries?  Yeah – all the time.  Kiwis, pineapples, mangos?  At least once per episode.  Blueberries, raspberries, blackberries?  Yes – on the regular.  But grapes?  Never!

So it would seem odd to me that people have such an aversion when they consider the idea of wine made from fruit other than grapes.  Ewww, yuck.  That probably means it’s super sweet and fruity, Right?

Well actually, the wine isn’t necessarily sweet- most of what we make is on the drier side.  But while they tend to be drier, they still preserve the character of the fruit, and if you want to call that fruity, then fine.  But I challenge you, next time you try a traditional grape wine, notice it’s essential grape nature – a grape nature that, dare I say, is fruity!  Can you blame us then, if our wine doesn’t have an essential grape fruitiness but one of another fruit.  A whole, natural, delicious fruit at that.  I sure don’t want to drink a cherry wine that tastes like grape wine!  I mean, it should have serious wine characters, which our wine does. But to expect it to taste LIKE grape wine, now that’s just an odd standard.  Yet you’d be surprised how often people’s first tendency is to compare our wine to grape wine.  Part of me understands, but part of me wants to say get over it!  Why limit our choice of wine to just those made from grapes.  I think chef’s tend to agree with us, other fruits have much more character and if they can use it with meals they prepare, why not use them to make wine?

That’s my take anyways.

Posted in Fruit Wine | Leave a comment

The Last-Slice-Of-Pizza Dilemma


The Last-Slice-Of-Pizza Dilemma is a staple occurrence for middle-school aged kids in America.  Let me set the scene.  You and three friends are circled around a rectangular table.  Tummies growling.  Mouths watering.  Your friend’s dad plops the box of pizza down.  One friend dives at the box of pizza and opens it while the rest of you grab viciously for a slice.  Plateless. Careless. Grease stains spreading like ink in water.

One slice down and on to the second.  You eye for the biggest slice and pick it up.  As you mindlessly devour your second slice, instinctively you begin to do some calculations as if you were awaking from being hypnotized.

“Ok, we’re all on our 2nd slice.
There’s 4 of us total.
And only two slices left…”


From this point forward it’s an emotional calculation – warring versions of self-interest.  Hunger – one of the most basic desires – compels you to eat more quickly to be the first to grab the second-to-last slice.  At least then you could claim ignorance of how many slices you’ve had.

But the second-to-last slice gets taken and all of a sudden there’s a different pressure – concern for self-image, or put another way, the desire to be liked.  At this point you might decide that satisfying your hunger is more important than your concern for your self-image and proceed to grab the last slice.  More likely, you’ll actually ask if anybody else wants the last slice- a gesture that has the appearance of sincere care, but it is more carnal than that; By asking, you’ve effectively placed the onus of responsibility on your other two friends, who themselves now have to decide which desire is more important, their hunger or self-image.  One says no.  So does the other.  Mission Accomplished.  Unembarrassed, you pick up the now luke warm pizza with a grin of victory on your face.

But in this war of desires, there is yet a third desire that we’ve been trained to bury here in the West- a desire for your friends, those around you, to be the beneficiaries.  This is beyond simply treating others the way you want to be treated.  This is considering their well-being before your own.  And while this is a desire, it is not selfish like the other two desires.  It is more mature.  More life-giving.  More human.

This is how the Last-Slice-Of-Pizza dilemma plays out for those who operate by the third desire.  Far from waiting till the last slice – sensitive of the uneven math – you resolve to be satisfied with but one slice.  You eat it and then stop.  You’d prefer that your three friends each get the same portion, even if it means you eat substantially less.  Here, there is no motive born from concern for self.  Nor by some other form of insecurity.  It is motivated by love.

Operating from this third desire drastically changes the social dynamic.  In fact, you’ll notice that your three friends, who otherwise may have operated in self-interest, will be more conscious, more aware.  They, themselves, may choose to forfeit a slice.  Or insist you eat theirs.  Here there is no competition.  No cannibalism.  It’s true friendship.  A true team.

Obviously the Last-Slice-Of-Pizza Dilemma plays out in nearly all of our social interactions.  While driving to work.  While in line at the grocery store.  Making investments.  Out at dinner.  Unfortunately, our society has trained us to be cutthroat.  That is if we want to get ahead.

Here at California Fruit Wine, we are imagining a world where we do things differently.  Whether in our interactions with our customers, in who we choose to do business with, or in how we want to grow, we are motivated by this third desire- care for others.  For business, this is counter-cultural, seemingly at odds with the “bottom line”.  But maybe that’s a good thing.  Is this idealism?  Some unrealistic utopia?  I don’t think so.  What I’m afraid of, is that labeling as such is just way for us all to justify our own selfishness.

So you have two choices.  Dismiss this notion and continue on as usual.  Or be a part of helping us in choosing to relate to each other differently.

Alone, we are but cogs in the system.  Together we can accomplish great things.  Who’s with us?

Posted in General Thoughts | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sushi & Seashells

Friday,  July 13 3pm-8pm (Food arrives at 5pm)

CFW SoCal Beach Week

Sushi and Seashells

This FoodieFriday, as a part of CFW Beach Week, we will be bringing out The Sushi Bus. Created by local sushi chefs Neil Foreman & Loren Waite, this latest gourmet food truck to join a growing convoy of North San Diego County food vendors. They are recognized for their prepackaged bento boxes, filled with cucumber salad, edamame, soy sauce, wasabi, ginger and six to eight slices of California, spicy tuna or veggie sushi rolls. Also, join our efforts in creating a collage to display permanently in our tasting room. Come leave your mark. Bring in a seashell or purchase one here for $1. All proceeds from the seashells go to Eco-Rooted, a non-profit organization formed to spread environmental awareness.

Posted in Events/Food Trucks/New Wine | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment