On Sunday, Thatboy and I celebrated our 11 year anniversary. 11 years you guys. That's over a decade of being married.
We celebrated by getting rid of the kids for a couple of hours. That's right! A Day Date!
We headed to Temecula for some wine tasting, but stopped on the way to grab breakfast. It was one of those spur of the moment things, googling places while on the highway and pulling off before we got into town.
Our destination was Cork Fire Kitchen, the restaurant at the Temecula Creek Inn. One of the things that makes this place especially special is that it's part of the same hotel group as The Surf and Sand, where we got married 11 years ago.
The inn itself was really pretty, and quiet. It looked like a great place to stay if you were planning a trip to the area. We are already trying to figure out a time we can come back and stay.
We decided to split a couple of their breakfast items, since both of us wanted to try the chipotle chorizo benedict. We also ended up with the citrus chia pudding. I've been really into chia pudding lately, and although Thatboy was wary, he ended up really enjoying it.
With the food in our belly, we were ready for our wine country adventures.
We had picked several wineries to try that weren't as kid friendly as the ones we usually go to. Our first stop was Doffo.
We were expecting to be more wowed than we were. The syrah and malbec were enjoyable, but the rest of the wine list left us unimpressed.
I did like the 3-D video they showed of the winery!
Our next stop was definitely somewhere we couldn't go with our kids. Briar Rose winery is adults only. That's right, you have to be 21 to even be on the grounds. And just like the 21+ pools, we definitely enjoyed the child free atmosphere. We enjoyed the wines here more than at Doffo, again sticking with reds. Just due to lucky timing we even got to taste one of the oldest bottles in Temecula. They had just opened the second pressing of a 1997 Cabernet Sauvignon.
If Briar Rose felt like something out of a fairy tale, that's because it was. The winery is housed in a replica of Disney's Snow White Cottage, built by one of Disneyland's imagineers for his wife.
While working at Disney, he designed parts of Toontown and Fantasyland. And the Toontown roofing found its way to this Temecula replica.
The inside also stayed true to the theme. Although it's not open to the public, you can peek in doors and windows.
Other parts of Disneyland adorn the grounds. The lanterns that hang on either side of the entrance once lit the way in the Haunted Mansion.
And the one above this clock once hung in Splash Mountain.
The rocks at the front of the grounds came from Indiana Jones. And to keep with the Snow White theme, there are little dwarves hanging out all over the vineyard.
We spent a long time at Briar Rose and realized it would probably be a good thing to eat again. At the recommendation of the staff at Briar Rose, we headed over to the restaurant at the Avensole winery. We ended up making a meal of some appetizers. Baked brie, roasted brussels sprouts, and a crab cake.
After lunch we had time for one more winery. We went back to a tried and true, Palumbo. We both really love this winery, but it's small, which isn't great for young children. So we used this opportunity to stop by and pick up a bottle of one of our favorite Cabernet Francs.
We headed home and spent the rest of the days with our boys. Who could care less about our anniversary. Or 11 years. They have their own things going on. And while they want to include us in those things, it's really all about them. What they want. And right now? What they want is ice cream. It IS summer after all. And we've been doing a lot of ice cream lately. Including an ice cream dinner on Saturday night. Thatkid even made ice cream at preschool last week, by putting cream and sugar in a bag surrounded by ice and "squeezing" it. When he asked if we could do that at home I assured him we had a much better way of making ice cream - the ice cream maker. Just pour the ingredients in, and no squeezing required!
This is a basic, light, ice cream. Many cheesecake ice creams feature graham crackers, or more of a cake like consistency. This one creates a cream cheese base with fresh blueberries simmered down to a thick syrup. Pieces of blueberries remain making it seem really bright and summery.
Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream (From Cooking Light)
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
4 egg yolks
3 cups 2% milk
1 cup half and half
3 cups fresh blueberries
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup water
- Combine sugar, cream cheese and egg yolks in an electric mixer and mix at high speed until smooth.
- Bring milk and half and half to a boil in a heavy saucepan.
- Gradually add half of the hot milk to the cream cheese mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk.
- Return milk mixture to the pan and cook over medium low heat until the mixture reaches 160 degrees, stirring constantly.
- Place pan in an ice filled bool and cool completely, stirring occasionally.
- Bring blueberries, powdered sugar, and 1/4 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and cool completely.
- Stir the blueberry mixture into the milk mixture. Pour into the freezer can of an ice cream maker and and process.
- Spoon ice cream into a freezer safe container and freeze for 1 hour or until firm.