Have you heard? Oak Mountain Winery is really going to the dogs. Of course I mean that in the most positive way. This past Saturday, Oak Mountain held their fourth annual gathering of owners and pooches who come together to raise money for Cause for Paws, an organization that assists owners of pets suffering from diabetes. Valerie Andrews, co-owner of Oak Mountain, told me that this is a Cause that is near and dear to her heart because their own beloved dog, Petey, had been diagnosed with diabetes five years ago. “After seeing the treatment and how much it costs and learning that people were putting their animals down because they couldn’t afford it, we decided since we had a winery we should be able to do something - so we did,” said Valerie. Oak Mountain also donates a portion of the sales of their For Pete’s Sake wine to Cause for Paws.
The gorgeous weather made it perfect for a dog day afternoon and indeed there were probably just as many dogs as owners sitting back and enjoying themselves while musician Jimmy Blaze played standards like Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville and Willie Nelson’s You’re Always on My Mind. I wandered over to the wine bar, and as I sipped my delicious Sangiovese from Cougar, I was told that wineries up and down the De Portola Trail had donated wines for the event.
Chef Michael of Temecula Catering was grilling up thick juicy burgers, so the food line was the next stop. I filled up my plate with a burger smothered in blue cheese, a scoop of pasta salad, potato salad and slices of fruit, then settled down to my table. After a bit, I also treated myself to one of Oak Mountain’s special wine margaritas made from their Sauvignon Blanc. These are like icees for grown ups and go down really nice and easy.
The outdoor pavilion was surrounded by the silent auction tables and people were especially captivated by the opportunity to win a “build your own case” of superb wines. There were dozens of other items donated by Temecula’s business community, many of which were dog related – including oil and vinegar bottles shaped like Dachshunds.
As I walked about, I ran into Collette Muscara who was there with her dogs Lizzie and Ruby, and they all seemed to be having a great time. “I love Oak Mountain and so I bought tickets to this,” said Collette. “And I love animals - obviously. And it’s a great cause.”
Later on, as I patted the head of a very large and very friendly Pit Bull, I thought that if the dogs there could talk, I’m sure they would all certainly agree – this was a Cause worth howling for. If you would like to donate, contact Valerie and Steve at Oak Mountain Winery or go to the Cause for Paws website.
By the way, the dogs also told me to tell you that Oak Mountain welcomes leashed canine visitors anytime. So, if you want to enjoy a day in wine country but you don’t want to leave the pooch behind, you know where to go.
More Oak Mountain Winery Events to look for:
November 10th is their last cooking class. The price is $65.00 and each course is paired with wine. It is a hands on class so you will be cooking as well as eating.
They will be open with most if not all of the De Portola wineries for Black Friday sales on Nov 25th 6-9pm
Also the De Portola Wine trail is having their Winter Red Fest where you visit nine wineries for three red wines and food at each winery for $45.00 on December 4th