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I’m Maria Hunt aka The Bubbly Girl, author of The Bubbly Bar the ultimate guide to entertaining with sparkling wine cocktails.

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  • After you’ve seen a couple dozen wineries, it’s easy to think they’re all pretty similar inside, with barrels and tanks and hoses. But after visiting @palmaz_vineyards last week,  nothing could be further from the truth. 
This hidden 💎 tucked away in Napa’sCoombsville district is easily one of the most remarkable wineries I’ve visited in the world. It’s like a cross between a winery and a spaceship 🍇🚀 🍇

Outside, Palmaz exudes old world charm with stonework by craftsmen from Guanajuato, Mexico, graceful arches and metal flourishes that are nods to the family’s Argentine heritage.  My guide Adrian took me up to the Crow’s Nest tower so we could survey the gentle hills and vines on the family’s 600+ acre property. 
So I wasn’t prepared inside as he started explaining the winery’s next-level engineering and technology. They wanted a purely gravity flow winery, but couldn’t get the permits for the needed elevation. So, instead they dynamited 18 stories down into Mt. George.  The round tank room holds 24 tanks — one for each soil type - and the whole tank room rotates like a giant lazy Susan for grapes 🍇

I was stunned when Adrian flipped a switch and the tank room’s domed ceiling lit up with detailed info on the temperature, brix level, and progress of fermentation in each tank.  By projecting it on the ceiling, the winemaking team can see what’s happening at a glance. 
The seated tasting shows how the Palmaz wines play with food. The best matchup was house made smoked salmon and roe on blini with a Burgundian Chardonnay. Winemaker Tina Mitchell and consultant Mia Klein captured that flavor profile partly because the winery recreated the climate of Burgundy in the cave!

The young 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon  was juicy, intensely dark and seamless, 2014 shyly showed kirsch, spice and tea notes while the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon was a lush and gorgeous mouthful of plums, bright blackberries and spice — Palmaz Cabs see 200% French oak.

I’m looking forward to my next  @palmaz_vineyards adventure. .
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#palmaz#coombsville#wine#wines#vino#winelover#redwine#instawine#vineyard#napavalley#winestagram#cabernetsauvignon#drinkwine#thebubblygirl#thebaddishgroup#winetasting
  • Loved having the chance to taste the @bernardmagrez wine range yesterday. The 2015 Château Pape Clement Blanc was a standout for me — this wine was lush and tropical with aromas and flavors of underripe mango, papaya and pink grapefruit. Very light but the finish wouldn’t quit. Their first harvest was in 1252, so they’ve had time to perfect the Sauvignon Blanc - Semillon blend. 🍇 🇫🇷 🍷
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#bordeaux#2015#grapes#whitebordeaux#sauvignonblanc#semillon#pessacleognan#chateaupapeclement#wine#wines#winetasting#winelover#winewriter#thebubblygirl#bernardmagrez#frenchwine#westinstfrancis
  • Amazing is overused but it’s an apt word  for the industrial-chic design of the new @prisonerwineco in St. Helena. 
Interior designer Richard Von Saal and architect Matt Hollis used creative riffs on prison stripes, metal surfaces, custom furniture including  caged tête-à-têtes and Seussian light fixtures to really bring the brand story to life. Loved the Gothic-Inspired ceiling in the great room. And good thinking with the beveled corners so nobody gets hurt. 
If you love design, a visit is a must. .
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#prisonerwineco#theprisonerwine#napavalley#new#winery#interiordesign#wineanddesign#sthelena#thebubblygirl#interiordesigner#winecountry#industrialdesign#winewednesday#winetasting#winelover#winestagram#instawine
  • The new menu by @mstanyaholland at Oakland @wholefoods market Floodcraft Tap Room will bring the South to your mouth! Look for the buttermilk chicken fried sandwich, spicy oven baked yam wedges  and hush puppies. Pair it with one of their artisan beers. 🍠🍺🐓
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#mstanyaholland#oakland#wholefoods#topchef#brownsugarkitchen#newrestaurant#wholefoodsxtanyaholland#beer#floodcraft#thebubblygirl
  • My next amazing meal was at @origenoaxaca by chef Rodolfo Castellanos.
The squash risotto presentation was so amazing, like a kaleidoscope of flavors.🌈 The soft shell crab is one of the best I’ve had in my life— crispy savory coating with black beans, avocado and vegetables in vinaigrette. 🦀 I didn’t have words to describe the plantain empanadas with shrimp and pickled onions. 🦐

Between the art, the live music and chic Art Deco-ish decor, Origen would be on point in any major city. .
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#oaxaca#Mexico#travel#comida#altacocina#rodolfocastellanos#foodwriter#thebubblygirl#risotto#softshellcrab#origenoaxaca#tanyaholland
  • It looks simple, but this tetela  from @itanonioficial filled with ground chicarron, queso from Chiapas and crema is one of the most amazing things I’ve ever eaten. Itanoni is devoted to all things corn, and they make white and blue masa by hand and cook it on an hornilla in the front of the restaurant. Thanks for the recommendation, @beltorrealba 🌽🙏🏾🌽
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#oaxaca#mexico#travel#restaurant#tetela#itanoni#maiz#corn#mexican#mexicanfood#bestieverhad#restaurant#thebubblygirl#chicharron#comida
  • The Pyramids of Monte Albán are a must see. They were a center of Zapotec culture and it’s one of the earliest cities in Meso America.
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#oaxaca#montealban#history#archeology#mexico#travel#zapotec#visitoaxaca#travel#pyramids#thebubblygirl
  • Best wine so far has been the Big Blend from @venacavavinos 🍷
It is a big wine, but it has impeccable manners. With a little time in the glass, It’s suave and rich with dark plum, tart cherry, blackberry and suave tannins. Loved it with the duck molé tacos from @casa_oaxaca_mexican_restaurant .
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#oaxaca#valledeguadalupe#mexicanwine#venacava#wine#wines#redwine#winelover#winetasting#redblend#thebubblygirl#travel#mexico
  • Cinco de Mayo is one of the prettiest little streets in Oaxaca City. The moody sky makes the marigold decorations pop. And then the rain came.☔️☔️☔️
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#night#nightsky#nofilter#instatravel#oaxaca#mexico#travelphotography#thebubblygirl#diadelosmuertos#diademuertos

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Maria loves hearing from other bubbly girls. Write to tell her all about delicious bubbly you’ve just discovered or to ask a question about what to pair with what.