Ensenada’s grape harvest fiestas(Vendimia) kick off tonight at the Riviera. I am in Grape Harvest Humbug mode.
Tonight, for the cost of a moderate dinner($40 USD), you get to stand in line to taste one finger of wine. Granted, the wine flow is unlimited and it comes from as many as 40 different wineries. Some of the wine is world class and some of it is closer to what you might expect from a box of Almaden.
Food is also served on Vendimia‘s opening night. It is typically tapas(normally my fav!) with small, frilly, photo-op foods that taste ok. But, I’m a sit-on-my-ass, chew, quaff and converse leisurely kind of diner. Flitting to and fro around a courtyard to nibble and slurp is an interesting sport for many. Meh.
The promotional idea of the event provides you a taste of the restaurant or winery in hopes of you buying full meals or wine cases in the future. I completely support this marketing approach and wish my friends in the industry well.
For the most part, this looks like the female prom for adults. The guys go, because the women are going with or without the boys. The women put on their best promenade threads and shawls. I have seen a guy in an ascot once at this event.
The Facebook Fotofeed will be lit up on Saturday morning by females(gay exception noted). Each photo album will be a minimum of 12 and a maximum of 139[you know whom] photos of Friday’s Vendimia Fiesta. Staged group photos, local celebrities and the groupie scene will dominate these albums.
Out of a 100 comment thread of “oohs and aahs” over the photo album, there will be 2% of the comments by males. My team of statisticians have studied this trend extensively since 2008.
Oh, c’mon, you crusty old geezer, Doc! Why poke criticism at people having fun? You are right, guilty and shamed as charged! *( There is live music, so that adds a star for just about any event.
Above rendering(“photo-chopped picture”) elevates(“$25″) 2 succulent, peeled, deveined, butterflied, braised, sauced, herbed and plated shrimp from the Sea of Cortez(“shrimp”) in a luscious swimming lagoon(“puddle”/”slop”) of organic artisan churned, fermented cream(“butter”) with a tiara(“?”) of native oil fried wheat pasta(“burnt noodles”) and an arrangement of our garden’s fresh arugula(“weeds”).
It’s just that so much food has focused upon presentation that it becomes pretentious and over-produced. My music analogy is the 70s disco stuff with flutes, violins and a whistle. The more swirls, sparkles, smilies and vertical weeds that I see on the plate, the more I’m about to be disappointed for my $100 dinner investment.
When I see a chalkboard menu, I am in. Ain’t no friggin time or space to write a 100 word essay about today’s pork taco or lasagna.
What do I prefer? Sitting with a group of 2 to 8 at a table with food and wine freely flowing, so that my fat ass doesn’t have to chase after it. If the bottle is good, “Dos mas botellas, por favor…y POUR, POUR, por favor!!!“.
Tonight, I will enjoy a leisurely happy hour of ceviche, tostadas and Sam Adams lager. Might throw some meatballs in a quick red sauce with a $4 Grifone Sangiovese for supper.
For my low-tech Vendimia celebration?
Any Valle de Guadalupe winery with bread and cheese from Cremeria Los Globos works for me. Big hunk of bread, torn, not sliced, with cheese and a FIVE FINGER POUR in a water glass is the way to enjoy an evening with friends or strangers.
So do food trucks.
Geegollywhillikers, Doc, a food truck for haute cuisine and wine? Are you some kind of Ritz crackers, Cheez Wiz and Mad Dog 20/20 kind of food dinosaur?