Cab Lab + BBQ Bootcamp

Posted by: Olga Walsh in: Food/Beverage -


On October 3, Louis M. Martini Winery, in partnership with Certified Angus Beef brand, welcomed eleven media for a three-day wine and beef-filled trip to the Napa Valley.

The trip kicked off with a “Red on Red” dinner at the Louis M. Martini Winery in St. Helena. Third generation winemaker, Mike Martini, shared his family’s history as the different courses – each one as delicious as the other – arrived at the table. The night’s menu featured a Wild Boar Farms Heirloom Tomato and Bread Salad, Grilled Pancetta-Wrapped Prime Ribeye on Chestnut Puree, Thyme and Red Wine Braised Short Rib and Granny Smith Apple Frangipane Tart – among a few other dishes! The wine pairings included  2010 Ghost Pines Chardonnay, 2009 Louis M. Martini Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon, 2007  Louis M. Martini Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and 2007 Louis M. Martini Lot 1 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.

The media spent the following day at the Louis M. Martini Winery in St. Helena. Mike Martini and wine ambassador, Kendall Limon, gave a tour of the winery and the vineyard, educated the media on the different wine-making methods used at Louis M. Martini, as well as what grape varietals grow in the Martini vineyard. The media also had the opportunity to sort grapes right after they were picked off the vines. Mike Martini and wine ambassador, Kendall Limon, informed the media about the different Cabernet Sauvignon varietals and what to look for while tasting and smelling each. At the end of the day each attendee had the opportunity to put the day’s learnings to use in a blending session whereby they blended their own “signature” Cabernet Sauvignon wine. The rookie winemakers seemed pleased with their newly acquired skills, and their take-home gifts.

cab-lab-bbq-bootcamp-0151Day two concluded with a tour of Monte Rosse Vineyard in Sonoma County and a delicious dinner at the historic Monte Rosso Vineyard with hand-selected steaks which were cooked custom to each person’s order. Wines paired with the dinner included 2008 Louis M. Martini Gnarly Vine Zinfandel, 2010 Ghost Pines Chardonnay, 2007 Louis M. Martini Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, NV Petite Sirah Port and 2007 Monte Rosso Cabernet Sauvignon. Although it was raining, it certainly didn’t seem to damper anyone’s spirits.

On the third day, the media visited the 5 Star Land and Livestock Ranch in Wilton, California, about two hours from Napa.  Ranch owner, Abbie Nelson, took the group on a tour of the ranch on a chuck wagon, while riding on horseback herself, and shared her family’s history and what it really means to be a “certified angus beef” breed. Certified Angus Beef brand representatives further educated the media on the history of Certified Angus Beef, the differences between angus and other beef types as well as what issues cattle ranchers face today.

The three-day long trip finished with a dinner on the ranch. Certified Angus Beef brands’ chef, Michael Ollier, educated the media about the different types of steak cuts and shared some valuable grilling tips. Each member of the media branded their steaks with their initials before having it grilled to order. The dinner menu also featured Certified Angus Beef Flank Steak Tacos, Mexican Papitaks with Smoked Paprika, Corn Bread, Ranch Beans, Smashes Yukon Potatoes and a Seasonal Stone Fruit Cast Iron Upside Down Cake. There was of course,  plenty of wine and cowboy poetry too!


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