Hatfield Creek 2013 Estate Zinfandel - San Diego Wine Country.

"Do you drink wine?" one of my co-workers asked me on my first day.

"Shit yeah, I do!" was how I wanted to respond. But since I had just met her, I cleaned up my tone.

"I love red wine!" I said.

She asked if I'd had a chance to try vintages from the county wine country.  

My response offended her.

"Yeah," I said. "I haven't had a chance to get up to Temecula yet. But I intend to!'

She sighed. She was used to having to inform people that Temecula wasn't actually even in "San Diego Country." It's part of Riverside County.

She told me of the true wine country of Southern California.

"It's in Ramona Valley," she said. And then she offered to take me there some spare Saturday, as she goes at least once a month.

How could I refuse?

So a few weekend back, I drove down and met her and her husband for a series of tastings. 

They did not disappoint.

Unpretentious and easy-going... A vibe that is shared with quite a few parts of San Diego. We drove from vineyard to vineyard, relaxing into some pretty hefty pours. We only made it to three vineyards, despite having the intention of hitting four over five hours. But we were enjoying the Sun and the grapes too much to rush through anything.

So we have made plans to go back sometime next month.

I ended up buying a bottle of wine at each of the three vineyards.  And tonight, I opened up the bottle we bought at our first stop: Hatfield Creek.

This looks like an amazing evening, yes? It's the reason I have this little back patio garden. Fresh herbs planted and perfuming the air.  A setting sun that is gentle. A comfy space to lie down and write. And wine!

A red zinfandel, to be exact!

I found this bottle to be a soul mate of sorts.  Not just because it is a delicious red - and it truly is... But also because of the little logo on the bottle and the cork...

A hummingbird!

Some of my ayahuasca friends know my story with hummingbirds. So I saw it as a nice reminder from the Universe to keep on my path.

The bottle didn't need to breathe. It was lovely to pour straight out. A beautiful garnet color...

I'd forgotten how lovely the zinfandel grape is, as it has been probably 14 years since I had a glass! I drank red zinfandels in my very early 20s. In fact, they were one of the first red wines I learned to like.

Looks like "Nearly 40" is the "New 22."

But being "Nearly 40" is way better than being 22. I have more money. I travel. And we're on the verge of having our first woman president.

This is a damn fine age!

And a damn fine wine.