Photo credit: Alice Swift 

Well, it’s that time of year again! With the holidays coming up, beverage demand once again grows with the big family meals and celebrations with the loved ones. From the traditional turkey dinners, hams and rib roasts, to the green bean casseroles, candied sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie, what better way to celebrate than with a glass of eggnog, or spiced cider? Of course, being the writer for the “Wine Talk” column, my picks better have something to do with wine, or some type of F&B at the very least. 

In the past, my recommendations have been based on some theme or pairing to a traditional holiday dinner. However, when I think back over the years, each year brings more and more wonderful memories. Many of those memories are tied to a restaurant that I went to, or a favorite food item, or even beverage that I had. Next year, in 2020, my husband, Daniel Swift, and I will be celebrating our 10-year wedding anniversary! In that time: three states, six moves, one bakery/cake decorating business, four schools as students, seven schools as faculty, one invention & U.S. patent and not one, but TWO more businesses in Hawai’i... the years sure have flown by! This year, I would like to share a couple wines that are tied to some wonderful memories that I share with my other half. This month’s issue is dedicated to the memories connected to the wines, but I also happen to highly recommend all of them, since they are literally my personal picks. :) 2010 – Alice & Daniel Swift’s Wedding (Kellogg House, Pomona, California) 

Daniel and I first met in 2007, and a short three years later, we were married! 2010 was an extremely busy year, since it was not only the year of our wedding, but also my graduation from Cal Poly Pomona (Collins College of Hospitality Management, woo hoo!). During this time, I also worked at a number of places, including Packing House Wines Restaurant and Wine Shop. The owners, Sal and Ev Medina, were kind enough to work with us to supply the wines for our evening, all great selections! The Wines: Segura Viudas (Cava) and Frank Family Vineyards (Chardonnay and Zinfandel)

2011— Pacific Northwest Road Trip 

Although this wasn’t our first road trip together, Daniel and I went on one of the longest road trips we had been on that year. From SoCal to NorCal (Napa/Sonoma), to Oregon and Washington, we made plenty of pit stops for food, and of course, wine. One of our first couple stops was to the beautiful Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars and Domaine Carneros Winery, both amazing wineries with rich history stemming back as far as 1970 and 1987, respectively. The Wines: Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, Domaine Carneros 

2018 – First House Purchase in Kāne’ohe, O’ahu (Hawai’i) 

Finally, the most recent memories connected to wine would have to be our greatest achievement thus far (aside from both obtaining our doctoral degrees…), buying a house! In Hawai’i, nonetheless! On October 22nd, 2019, Daniel and I signed the papers and became homeowners to our first house together. It was no secret that we both have food and beverage backgrounds (Daniel is primarily the “food/culinary,” and I the “beverage”), so of course to celebrate the official date, both our realtor and the seller’s realtor gifted us bottles of wine. Luckily they both had great taste, and we have just celebrated living in our house for a little over a year now. The Wines: Orin Swift (Abstract Red Blend) and Moët & Chandon Champagne (Impérial Brut) 

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Cherish the memories that you make with good food, drink, friends and family. F&B is a universal language that brings us all together; I hope that we all will continue to create more memorable moments with the upcoming holidays and celebrations. 

Until next month (or year, I should say!), Cheers~! 

Alice