The Seductive Art of Drink at Silverado Vineyards


Eyes half-closed, her arm resting on the table, you could tell she is savoring the tiny goblet of Framboisette oblivious to the conductor frantically ringing a bell to warn her of the departing train.  This poster by Francisco Tamagno is just one of several Belle Epoque posters depicting the art of promotion and the seductive qualities of drink at Silverado Vineyards in California’s Napa Valley.


Life on the Film Festival Circuit

Sonoma International Film FestivalTechnicolor – Photo: Russ Johnson

Memo to my author friends: If you want to party, make a film

I spent part of the weekend at the Sonoma International Film Festival a tribute to art of  film and the consumption of enormous quantities of wine.

Talking to a few filmmakers, I learned a bit about the film festival circuit, which seems a bit like the 21st Century version of a traveling circus. Only much better.


Don Corleone and Vlad The Impaler Live at Francis Ford Coppola Winery

Tucker Auto at Francis For Coppola Winery

A thing about wine tasting: you can only do so much of it. You won’t find me trailing up and down some viney valley imbibing at one winery after another. After the first stop I feel the urge to do a face plant on the lawn.

Wineries have to offer more than tastings to hold their audiences these days and few do it better than showbiz master Francis Ford Coppola.

I spent a couple of hours at the Francis Ford Coppola Winery without sipping a drop. But there were other things to do.


The Grape White Way: Broadway in the Sonoma Vineyards

The Grape White Way: Broadway in Sonoma

Romantic nights evey summer in Jack London State Park in the Valley of the Moon in Sonoma County, California. The Transcendence Theatre Company, comprised of many Broadway veterans, has made the park home for the summer, singing and hoofing every weekend through September 1. The stage is in the ruins of an old winery on author Jack London’s property, next to the cottage in which he wrote. The California State Legislature slashed funds and the park was threatened with closure, but locals formed a group to save and manage it.