Best Moment of an Overwhelmingly Good Trip

This trip to California is winding down, we are packing to leave. Instead of thinking about returning to my cage tomorrow, I am focusing on the amazing memories this journey has provided. There are so many things that I will remember for all of my days, but one thing stands out overwhelmingly to me above everything else.

I am not easily starstruck. In a previous life I was a union stagehand and either met or occupied the same general space as some of the world’s biggest rock stars and actors. However, yesterday I was struck by a star.

Our hosts for the past couple of days at the wonderful La Residence in Napa have been the Hall family, of HALL Wines fame. The proprietor of HALL is Kathryn Walt Hall, Bill Clinton’s U.S. Ambassador to Austria, Texas Philanthropist, and all around amazing woman.

I think what overwhelmed me is that I am just some opinionated guy with some technical skills that I use to babble on the Web about food and wine. To be invited to stay at Ambassador Hall’s wonderful resort hotel, tour her properties and winery, and taste wine with her winemakers and vineyard genius was an amazing honor. When we arrived we found that she had left a personally hand-written note for Amy, welcoming us to La Residence. For a guy who still thinks of himself as a kid from the wrong side of the tracks, a personal note from a U.S. Ambassador just seems mind-boggling! So, imagine how gobsmacked I was when she met us in HALL’s wine cave to drink and participate in a blending seminar. The kicker however, was when she looked around the table and seemed genuinely thrilled to know our faces from reading our blogs. How *@#$ing cool is that?

Here she is, looking beautiful in a stunning white blouse. Considering she was sitting next to one of our spillingest wino friends, stayed miraculously white the entire time. Who wouldn’t be just a little starstruck?

Ambassador Kathryn Walt Hall of HALL Wine
Ambassador Kathryn Walt Hall of HALL Wine

More about La Residence and HALL Wines coming soon.

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