Photo by Thea Juliette Photography

I’ve never been a huge fan of Valentine’s Day.

Like many of you, I’ve always felt it was a holiday hyped up by Hallmark and people in the flower business to try and get a person to feel that this was the one day of the year when s/he should really – no, really – express their love to their partner.

I also will never forget the time my British (sorry, British guys) boyfriend told me in no uncertain terms that he “would not buy me flowers on Valentine’s Day” and then proceeded to take me to see Hotel Rwanda… with another guy friend of his. So, combine that with the time I got dog food in a chocolate box when I was a young teen, and you pretty much have some of the worst Valentine’s Day memories you could ever have. Thanks to my current beau – who showed up unexpected on my doorstep – I have now had the best Valentine’s Day ever and am still enjoying my beautiful bouquet of roses and lilies he brought me.

Photo by Clifton Photography

All this to say that you can perhaps imagine that I was not too upset when I was able to make sure I’d be doing EXACTLY what I wanted to not only on Valentine’s Day itself but also on the Saturday before (we can only be so lucky as to have a year when you get two days to celebrate the day!)

Four events in three days? YES PLEASE! Saturday was a beautiful day in Temecula, and we were so thrilled to be hosting two music tastings at the incomparably gorgeous Europa Village Winery. It was one of the first wineries I visited in Southern California when I moved here 10 months ago, and they are building what will soon be one of the most ambitious – and in my opinion, coolest – projects ever! They are creating a “village” of three Europes: Italy, France, and Spain! Luckily for us, we got to sample a bit of this through our wine, food, and music choices in our program “The International Languages of Love.” Our favorite pairing? Had to be the Libido Blanco from Bolero Cellars paired to “Malagueña” by Ernesto Lecuona and the Fugue from Bach’s Sonata no. 2 in a minor.

Our violinist Victoria Bietz, guitarist Jeff Pekarek, and pianist Dan Bailey did an astounding job, and we are so excited to work with them again soon! Yours truly belted out a couple of numbers, as well!!

Photo by Thea Juliette Photography

Tuesday was Valentine’s Day, and we found ourselves at D’Vine Lounge Bar in Downtown Los Angeles where we presented a co-hosted event with Los Angeles Wine Tasting entitled “Love Stories: Told and Untold.” We paired wines from New Zealand, Italy, Argentina, and France with music selections spanning eight different genres including tango, Neopolitan song, jazz, classical, opera, folk, and more!

Photo by Thea Juliette Photography

We’re in full swing with planning for the spring and summer, and can’t wait to see you at our next public event on March 23rd at one of our favorite haunts: V Wine Room in West Hollywood. We’re teaming up with Mikey and his team again for “The Playful Palate: A Music, Wine & Chocolate Tasting to celebrate Women’s History Month.” Tickets are on sale and can be purchased here.

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