First beach backpack: Rialto

First beach backpack: Rialto

Icy surf hits my sweaty, sizzling shins. Maybe I shouldn’t send my heart into defib by marching into the icy Pacific. Dayum. This is cold. And supremely satisfying after slogging down the beach with a 60-lb pack. Tomorrow will be a minus tide, perfect for tidepooling. Now that camp has been set up, my only job is to enjoy expansive views while sipping Champagne, observing waves crash, then a spectacular sunset on sea stacks. Continue reading First beach backpack: Rialto

Eating mold in Rioja

Eating mold in Rioja

One of the finest wines I’ve ever tasted hails from Spain’s Rioja region. The winery hasn’t changed its methods since starting in 1877. Same presses. Same massive oak fermentation vats. Same cellars. It also differs significantly from its ‘traditional’ winery neighbors: holding its wines long after all others release their vintages, and employs drastically different climate control methods. No fruit or oak bombs here. Earthy, with a plethora of secondary and tertiary notes ranging from blood to game to orange peel. Different. Not for everyone. Continue reading Eating mold in Rioja