Show 314, March 9, 2019: Enrique Valero, General Manager, Abadia Retuerta LeDomaine, Winery & Boutique Luxury Hotel, Spain

Enrique ValeroThe internationally recognized wines of Spain’s Abadía Retuerta have enjoyed three consecutive years in the top 100 wines of the world, according to the preeminent authority, Wine Spectator. While wines were produced on the estate centuries ago, the current winery is only two-and-a-half decades old and is known for its award-winning single terroir wines.

“There are 54 vine plots each with very distinct characteristics, each analysed, controlled, worked, vinified and tasted separately. Each terroir is planted with a single varietal or grape variety. The planting is 70% Tempranillo grapes, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Syrah, with the remaining 10% divided between Merlot and Petit Verdot (an innovation used to make a single-varietal wine).”

“The winery’s gold-standard wine is the Selección Especial, which reflects the essence of the estate – 75% Tempranillo, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot. Proof of its superb quality, the 2001 Selección Especial was awarded “Best Red Wine in the World – Red Wine Trophy” in 2005 by London’s prestigious International Wine Challenge competition. In addition, Selección Especial is the first Spanish wine to be included for three consecutive years on the list of the 100 Best Wines in the World, which has been published annually since 1988 by Wine Spectator magazine.”

The estate also includes Abadia Retuerta LeDomaine, possibly Spain’s most extraordinary luxury hotel located in a restored historic abbey on the magnificent 1,730-acre estate.

Under a vaulted ceiling of pure Gothic style at LeDomaine, framed by thick stone walls and anchored by a 17th-century fresco of The Last Supper, the Refectorio is a sanctuary of haute cuisine with one Michelin Star, maintained since 2014. Executive Chef Marc Segarra prepares innovative and seasonal gastronomic fare in the contemporary kitchen, using the freshest local ingredients procured from specialty local suppliers as well as LeDomaine’s own fields.

In addition to the Refectorio, located in the abbey’s former refectory, guests dine on specialty dishes, tapas and small plates in the Vinoteca restaurant with a wine-cellar atmosphere, and al fresco on seasonal dishes in spring and summer in the Jardin del Cloustro and at the Pool Bar. Abadía Retuerta LeDomaine uses the resources from the estate to produce specially Crafted Spanish Foods: wine salt, pine nuts and honey.

Enrique Valero, both the winery’s and hotel’s accomplished General Manager joins us on the long-distance line from Spain.



Show 180, July 16, 2016: Dan Minjares, Restaurant Manager and Mixologist, The Ranch Restaurant Continues…

Dan MinjaresThe Ranch Restaurant in Anaheim has a tremendous commitment to using fresh fruit and vegetables in all their preparations. They incredibly have their own farm (The Farm) in Orange on over two acres of land where they grow many of the fruits and vegetables used at the bar and on the dinner menu.

Restaurant Manager & Mixologist Dan Minjares has recently introduced their new Summer Cocktails. Included is a selection of appealing “Farm Inspired Summer Cocktails” that use citrus, watermelon and strawberries from the farm.

Heirloom tomatoes are in abundance at The Farm right now. Dan uses them to create their own proprietary Bloody Mary mix. Chef Rossi’s pepper sauce (from peppers and chiles grown on The Farm) is part of the recipe.

The “Best of Award Excellence” (Wine Spectator Magazine) wine program at The Ranch includes a 500 plus bottle list with rare and reserve wines featuring over 30 wines-by-the-glass selections. They feature hand-crafted cocktails, barrel aged cocktails and, when in season, farm-to-glass cocktails from their own heirloom vegetable farm on Edwards Ranch Estates. Draft and bottle beer selections are available as well as specialty martinis, select whiskey, rye, tequila and after dinner drink libations.


Show 138, September 12, 2015: Bar Harbor, Maine’s The Bluenose Hotel and The Looking Glass Restaurant

Looking Glass RestaurantThe Bluenose is a classic hilltop hotel property with a spa in scenic Bar Harbor, Maine at the gateway to Acadia National Park. It’s old-fashioned hospitality with elegant accommodations and all the modern touches. The magnificent ocean vistas are unrivaled.

The adjacent Looking Glass Restaurant offers superb local fare for breakfast and dinner with an incredible view of Frenchman Bay. Its inviting patio deck is even pet-friendly.

Newly arrived Executive Chef Matt McPherson and property GM Jim Ash are following a vision to fill diners’ plates with locally caught seafood, Maine cheeses, meats raised in the area and in sustainable ways and fresh, local vegetables. Much of the produce comes from an on-site garden located just below the restaurant.

“I think the local movement is one of the most important things with food right now, where people are so disconnected with where they’re getting everything from,” Chef McPherson said. “People are used to the whole mass-quantity perfection, and that’s not really what food is. I think if we can get into the localized cooking and what food is supposed to be and kind of push that slowly, that’s the wave of the future.”

The Wine Spectator Award-winning list includes a fine selection of California wines in addition to some quality Maine selections. The portfolio of local craft beers from Atlantic Brewing Co. is also available including a couple of selections on tap. You can’t get any more local than the blueberry ale.

General Manager & Co-Owner Jim Ash and Executive Chef Matt McPherson are our guests.