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Hello Friends! After 6 years of writing about wine and food on rickbakas.com I’ve taken a step further into a new industry not much different than the wine industry—legalized cannabis. Earlier this year I launched weedhorn.com. Regardless of your beliefs about marijuana, Huffington Post calls it the fastest growing industry […]

Introducing WeedHorn.com

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#MerlotMe The month long celebration begins today It’s been 10 years since the movie Sideways hit theaters and forever changed our perception of Merlot. Since then, winemakers have raised their game and raised the quality level of Merlot with better clones, better farming and better winemaking. It’s time for us […]

#MerlotMe all month long

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Wine Country Eating is moving! The new site will be called The Travelling Palate and it’ll feature cleaner design, no ads, smarter search and better mobile device friendliness. I hope you find it to be more professional looking and just plain better. Please make sure you’re subscribed on the new […]

Moving on up like George and Weezy

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I had an epiphany over breakfast one day to try this coffee rubbed pork concept. Coffee and cream go together—especially when there’s a savory pork products involved (like bacon). So I took the idea of those three ingredients and did a club remix for dinner. And thus, the coffee rubbed […]

Coffee Rubbed Pork w/ Dijon Cream Sauce

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Photo by Frank Gutierrez, Wagner Family of Wine Right smack dab in the middle of the state of California sits the Santa Lucia Highlands in the massive Salinas valley—California’s prime agricultural region located 20 miles southeast of Monterey between the Gabilan and Santa Lucia mountain ranges. They grow everything there […]

California’s Overlooked Treasure: Santa Lucia Highlands

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As I typed the headline to this blog post it struck me how fast time flies. I still think of the Denver Broncos Logo as “new” even though it’s been around for fifteen years. When I look at the horse logo on the side of the helmet it still seems […]

The Denver Broncos Logo Design: 15 Years Later

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When I told some friends I was going to visit Opus One on my birthday they scoffed. “Ooooh, GOD! They are sooo pretentious there!” they said. “Don’t forget to kiss the ring on the way in”. I brought my Mom and Mrs. B along for the ride because, hey, it […]

Opus One: The Evolution of an Icon Pt. 2

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Twenty years ago if you were in a restaurant and ordered a bottle of Opus One you were important. You were a fine wine connoisseur and you liked the best. Opus One raised the bar for Napa Valley and for domestic wine. If you were drinking Opus One you were […]

Opus One: The Evolution of an Icon pt. 1

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Prime Rib Roast, Filet Mignon, Rib Eye Steaks, Rosemary and Garlic Roasted Beef, you name it….does holiday feasting get any better for Cabernet pairing? Hearty holiday meals with higher fat proteins call for wines with higher tannins. Master Sommelier, Craig Collins did a guest post about matching tannin to fat […]

3 Cabernet Sauvignons for Christmas

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Braised Beef Ragu with Pappardelle (or any kind of braised short ribs) might just be my favorite recipe ever. Like, ever ever. We’re talking last meal kind of dish. I love it for the hearty braising liquid and the tender, succulent meat. As a wine lover, some of my favorite […]

Braised Beef Ragu with Pappardelle Pasta

Thanksgiving Ravioli
Mrs. B is six months pregnant which means she’s been on a comfort food tear lately, especially with pasta. She whipped up this Thanksgiving themed Ravioli dish with turkey and cranberry after seeing Giada De Laurentiis make something similar on the Food Network last year. Our original goal was to […]

Thanksgiving Ravioli w/ Turkey & Cranberry Filling

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  Filet Mignon with Blue Cheese works well as a main dish but can also be altered to be more of an appetizer like the one pictured above. I like to cut the filet into small little bites with a bit of sauce drizzled on top. When it comes to […]

Filet Mignon w/ Blue Cheese Porcini Sauce