By Carl J. Kanowsky
“It’s so nice – small and intimate, only for 75 people. Really, a celebration of what the Boys & Girls Club does, which is helping kids.”
That’s Ann-Marie Bjorkman, President of the Santa Clarita Valley Boys & Girls Club, speaking about the upcoming Wine Tasting to benefit the Club.
Jake Bilbro, owner of Limerick Lane Winery in Healdsburg, Sonoma County, will pour six of his award-winning wines on Thursday, August 16 at Salt Creek Grille at 6:30. Tamra Levine, the Director of Catering for Salt Creek, has crafted four dishes to marry with the wines being served.
The media had a preview at Salt Creek of those wines on July 31. Also in attendance were some long-time friends of the Club, such as Wayne Crawford (Ann-Marie’s predecessor as President of the Board of Directors of the Club) and Salt Creek’s proprietor, Greg Amsler.
Six wines were poured, starting with the 2017 Rosé, which Amsler raved about. This was followed by 2016 Hail Mary, 2016 Estate Zinfandel, 2015 1910 Block Zinfandel, 2016 1910 Block Zinfandel, and finished with 2015 1023 Estate Cuvée. All of these wines have quite highly in wine critic ratings worldwide.
Chef Levine brought out to acclaim from the crowd some of the dishes she will serve on the 16th. These include Grilled Cheese Panini, Grilled Chicken/Vegetable Fritter, and Wine Country French Toast.
Mike Bjorkman, Ann-Marie’s husband and co-chair with her of the Boys & Girls Club Auction for the past few years, enjoyed the 2016 Estate Zinfandel the most, savoring the pepper hints in the wine.
Santa Clarita’s Wine Blogger and Consultant, Eve Bushman, was also in attendance. In commenting on the 1023 Cuvee, she said, “Love a wine that has the aromas to pull you in.” On the event itself, she said, “What I find amazing about my fellow wine writer Carl Kanowsky is how he always brings in top-notch and extremely highly scored wines for this event every year. Add in that Salt Creek Grille has Chef Tamra Levine doing inspired food pairings and all for the benefit of our own Boys and Girls Club. Ladies and gentlemen, you have the trifecta: wine, food, and a good cause!”
Amsler, who has partnered with the Boys & Girls Club for eight prior wine events, said, “We have been a proud supporter of the Club for 19 years. I’ve really enjoyed the wine tasting partnership with the Club. It’s a great way to support the club while also learning about new wines and winemakers. It’s also fun for Tamra and staff to take new wines and play with different recipes.”
The tasting is Thursday evening, August 16, starting at 6:30 at Salt Creek Grille. Tickets are available online at https://www.scvbgc.org/wine-event/.