Renting a house sight unseen in Sonoma has its uncertainty, but vacationing with 3 other couples, friends from home, could be a recipe for . . . disaster.
We walked in to find our friends sitting around the island of a beautiful kitchen nibbling the treats that were set out to welcome us. They turned and greeted us with big smiles and my concerns began to disappear.
As it turned out it was better than I could have hoped. Assemble a group that loves to eat, loves to cook and really loves good wines and it is hard to go wrong.
What made this so special was how comfortable we were with each other. The meals seemed to magically appear when people volunteered to cook creating the dinner around individual suggestions. We’d gather in the kitchen everyone busy with their tasks while someone poured the wine and passed the appetizers. Everyone was involved and we discovered this was a group of men who really knew how to cook!
When dinner was ready we moved outside to a find a dining table glowing with candlelight ready for us to sit and enjoy the fabulous food while tasting the wines we had gathered during the day.
The conversation and the laughter carried on into the night, until one by one we would get up to either sit in the hot tub, go to sleep or dance to the tunes. Whatever it was it was fun!
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Celine was a name that was synonymous with good food in my home. She was my grandmother’s cook. My mother still tells me stories about watching Celine in the kitchen. Her secret, she’d say in a hushed tone, was her sauces; sauces, she’d say with emphasis, are the secret to being a great cook. Celine didn’t . . .