Wine Tasting along the Madera Wine Trail

Saturday, Barbara and I, along with six friends from our Bible study group, went wine tasting at wineries along the Madera Wine Trail.  OK, I can already hear some raise the question – “Christians and wine drinking are taboo”.  Not so, read your Bible.  Wine was the beverage of choice and Jesus’ first recorded miracle was to make exquisite tasting wine out of water at a wedding in Cana.  So get over it.

Being Valentines weekend, it was their “Wine and Chocolate” weekend.  I’m all for the chocolate part!  Now Barbara has been a wine connoisseur for as long as I have known her.  My affectionate term for her is my “wine snob” so I liked this floor mat in the gift area at Birdstone Winery.Wine Snob

She can converse with the best of them about the flavors, aroma, intricate tastes and throws out funny terms like “this wine has great legs”.  Now I saw some great legs too, one pair in a mini skirt, heels and interesting fishnet stockings – but I didn’t think it would be in good taste (pun intended) to photograph them.

If you haven’t figured out by now, I am always the designated driver.  I either like or don’t like the wine.  It better be sweet or forget it – something I find most wine snobs turn up their noses at.  Thus I was the odd man out on this trip.  Instead, I like to visit wineries because most have interesting photo opportunities.  Wineries are usually picturesque places.  So my curiosity was aroused to see what Madera area wineries had to offer the camera.

Instead of a wrist band showing you paid for all the tastes you can handle, the Designated Drivers were treated as VIP’s with our own special badge:VIP Button (Designated Driver)

Badge was cool – it allowed us in free to all the chocolate and cheese tasting and it also came with a gift certificate for some great treats at local eateries.  Photography and good treats – the makings of a great day.  I saw a lot of limousines and even big charter buses full of people arriving at the wineries.  I  wonder what their drivers got?  At least the tasters had a safe ride home.

More posts to come about each of the 5 wineries we visited.

About Ron Ludekens

God created a marvelous world full of wonderful sights and people. He is the Creator and it is His Palette of beauty that Ron Ludekens tries to capture as photographic images. Images of nature or images of people and their lives - both reflect the handiwork of the Creator. Ron is a photographer living in Visalia, California - part of the great Central Valley. He is immediately surrounded by agriculture and all the hard working people that feed our world. A short distance away are the grand Sierra Nevada mountains, impressive National Parks and, wider still, the vast diversity that California has to offer. Ron is one of the family owners of the L.E. Cooke Co Wholesale Nursery - a leader in the horticulture industry of North America. Even on the job, his camera is always near by. His photos for the nursery trade have been published in print and around the websites of nurseries across America. Ron is also a leader in his church and its missions. Ron's photography has been a resource the church uses in its communications and message. Plus photos of all the fun things we do are shared among members and friends. Ron also loves capturing precious moments in lives of people. Weddings, senior portraits, graduations, family gatherings, maternity and special events. Ron will not shoot more than four weddings a year to provide the attention to detail and followup that is required for such an important milestone event in the lives of the couple. Ron can be reached at 559-732-7165 or cell 559-967-5370.
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