Monday, June 16, 2014
For our final Missouri Wines Passport Program reward we were hosted at St. James Winery's Cottage. Level 3 included a private Food and Wine Pairing. We met with Calli Collier, St. James Winery's Event Coordinator at the tasting room in St. James, MO. Our group followed her into the countryside to the cottage in the middle of their vineyards. The cottage was quite quaint and inviting. It featured a long bar, patio and swimming pool. We were greeted by our bartender, Tony and a full spread of cheeses, fruit and chocolates. The presentation was flawless.
Our tasting included: St. James Winery's Pioneer Red, Cynthiana, Pioneer White, Riesling, Blackberry, and Mango wines. Our most notable pairings where the Espresso BellaVitano cheese with the Pioneer White and the Mango wine with the fresh peaches. Calli did a nice job of walking us through the taste and giving us lots of background information on the winery. We took a walk out to look at the vines and enjoy a glass of wine. It was a perfect day to be among the vines enjoying great wines and fun conversation.
Calli offered to give us a tour of the cellars back at the tasting room which we eagerly accepted. We have been to the tasting room many times but have never had time to take a tour. We were able to see lots of barrels and fermenting tanks which was impressive. This is by far the largest winery that we've ever toured, and the amount of wine they produce is breathtaking.
We had a fabulous time at our food and wine pairing and our tour of the winery. St. James offered us some top-notch hospitality. Later that evening, we attending St. James Movie in the Vineyard event. It was a bit chilly but the food from CrepEscape was fabulous, the movie was a classic (Casablanca), and the wine was flowing (we were enjoying the Pioneer Red)! Overall, our day at St. James was very unforgettable. We are sad that all of our Missouri Wine Passport Rewards have been used up, but we are hopeful that a new program will be introduced soon. Until then, we'll continue to explore Missouri Wine Country on our own!
See all of the photos from our day at St. James Winery here.