So, a little more about me. I am originally from Orange County and have lived in the San Diego area for the past seven years. When my husband and I first moved here, we bought what was described as a “Spanish farmhouse.” Anyway, it had a small vineyard of about 100 vines in front of the home that was just for show, but then it got us thinking.
In the first few months, we hired a “wine guy” who pulled out all the decorative vines and planted Sangiovese vines. You see, the “wine guy” told us it would grow well in this microclimate of North San Diego County.
It took a couple of years, but we had our first harvest in 2013. It produced okay grapes, but the next year things were much better. From 2014 on, the crop improved, and our Sangiovese grapes are producing roughly 18 cases per year. Not bad, huh?
Hi there. I’m Holli.
Thank you so much for stopping by! This project is very close to my heart for many reasons, so pour yourself a glass of chammy and let’s chat!
I have always enjoyed cooking and entertaining from a young age. At about age 12 I had my first dinner party for my mom and a friend of hers. I cannot recall what I made, but her friend brought me a very special “hostess gift.”
It was a cookbook called Paul Bocuse’s French Cooking – he was a master in French cuisine. At the time, of course, I had never heard of this chef, but this was a weighty and complicated cookbook. Yes, daunting but inspiring. My mom’s friend inscribed, “Within these pages may you find gourmet delights to blow your mind.”
Well, I did attempt a few things from that cookbook. And really, it’s a good reference if you desire to cook fancy French food (honestly, which I usually do not – haha). But mostly, it encouraged me to keep up with cooking and the entertaining that goes along with it. As the years passed, I kept cooking. And cooking.
You know what? I still have that book in my pantry along with my other cookbooks!
We started harvesting the grapes ourselves in 2016, and I had many friends lining up to help mostly because they like the homemade pizza party we throw afterward! Haha!
Since then we have planted a few other varieties. Some good, some not so good – that’s what happens in a vineyard – it’s a work in progress.
We planted a Viognier (not so good), then we planted Petit Syrah and Cabernet Franc. In 2017, we had our first harvest of the Petit Syrah and Cab Franc. The plan was to blend it with the Sangiovese and create a rose̕ blend. At the time I write this it’s 2018, so we have no idea how this is going to turn out because we are still blending it. I’ll keep you posted on an update for sure.
(This blend will be named Miss Matty Meritage Rose̕, but I digress)
Now on to the “dog connection.” When we moved here, we had an English Bulldog named Miss Sophie, who was eight-years-old at the time, but she was very spunky at her age. I figured what a better name for the wine than Sweet Sophie Girl Sangiovese!
Miss Sophie lived a nice long life (for an English Bulldog) of 10.5 years. After we lost Miss Sophie, we found a wonderful little bulldog girl puppy, whom we named Miss Lulu.
After a couple of years, we thought that Miss Lulu might like to have a “sister.” While we were pondering about this, we considered how it might be nice to adopt a bulldog from Southern California Bulldog Rescue (SCBR). The only issue here was that female bulldogs don’t necessarily get along great with other adult female bulldogs (and I wanted a girl dog).
And to top that, it’s kind of rare to see a bulldog puppy end up in rescue. They are in demand, and most bulldogs that end up in rescue are older because of various issues that their “parents” (and I use this word loosely) were not prepared for including the responsibility that comes with pet ownership.
So along came our Miss Matty.
SCBR partners with a company called poundWISHES that helps rescues and shelters by reaching out to their supporters to promote any dogs they have available.
Miss Matty had been “dumped” at a Riverside shelter with an awful case of demodectic mange at three months old.
Just dumped in a nighttime “drop box!” I cry every time I think about it!
Anyhow, the shelter called SCBR and they immediately picked her up. Just so you know, demodectic mange is completely treatable and not contagious to humans or healthy dogs.
Well, two months later with medical treatment and many medicated baths later, Miss Matty was ready to be adopted.
SCBR promoted her on poundWISHES. I saw her, and I fell in love – it was love at first sight!
And who says you can't find love online?
What I didn’t realize before this process was how many dogs needed help. They are truly, 100% dependent on us to provide and care for them. They can’t speak, they need a VOICE.
From that point on I knew I wanted to help as many as I could, anyway that I could.
There are so many great ways to give back, from writing a check to donating goods. These are all great options, but I wanted to do something different. My goal in all this is to create amazing and memorable experiences that also give back to the charities and non-profits that are making a difference.
So, as you figured out by now, I have a huge passion for animals. In addition to helping our furry friends, I’ll be sharing some info about the other charities that I feel strongly about, like Breast Cancer Angels. This nonprofit is based in Southern California — it’s a tight-knit group that helps patients undergoing cancer treatments that need financial support.
The goal of “Holli’ Day Any Day is to create a hub of awareness and raise funds for these organizations so that they can help as many people and animals as they can.
I hope that you’ll join me for this special adventure! There will be a lot of food, fun, and friends (furry and otherwise) along the way!