FIRST – Recent Forbes articles I’ve published include:

Why Wine Writing Is Tricky

The Diverse World Of Ballpoint Art

Colorado Wines Hitting High Points

A New Year And Napa Valley Wines


Highlights of a recent visit to the USA, and sampling of various wines, are below.

Santa Barbara California – Sampling wines with friends Anne and Bill. Last time we met was for an extravagant wine tasting at their home 10 years ago. This gathering was smaller but wonderful. Notice the wines include one from Colorado, one from Barossa in Australia and a European beauty.

We are looking woozy – and check out the morning after bottle lineup
Left to right – Colorado, California, Valpolicella, Hermitage, California, Barossa

Napa Valley, California – Days spent with friends Heather, Brant and Karen at their Rutherford home. They are friends with the Rombauer familly, who this year sold their winery to E&J Gallo. But their Chardonnay still tastes stellar! The ‘Volunteer’ label is a reasonably priced wine made by volunteer firefighters in Napa Valley.

Next, a barbecue with winemaker Chris Phelps and his family in Rutherford. Chris is not only consulting winemaker for Inglenook (owned by the Francis Ford Coppola family) but produces his own Ad Vivum and Coil labels. All are excellent. His son Josh also produces a range of delicious wines under the Grounded Wine label.

Steaks grilled over dried vines set alight – Bordeaux style!
Top right CW – Winemaker Morgan Maureze, Inglenook vines and door, winemaker Chris Phelps, Inglenook interior, Napa hills, bubbly hour

Vashon Island in Washington State

Visited friend Andreas and his partner Suzanne. Vashon Island produces some excellent wines. We sampled with scallops sauteed in garlic. Amazing.

THIRD – Twice in the past five years I’ve had a ‘Dry January’ combined with pre-dawn running sessions. These resulted in my losing between 5 and 6 kilograms (12 and 15 pounds) and also getting into decent shape rapidly.

The Facebook posts from 2019 and 2021 are here. It’s likely time to do this again …


After 90 years out of print, I have republished the First World War classic titled “Missing” by Talbot Bruce. You can get a copy of the ebook at Amazon.com. Click Here.

Thanks all. Get ready for a colorful 2024!

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