The flowers are blooming with zeal while puffy white clouds lazily drift across the blue skies of the Livermore Valley, and we are savoring this steady transition from spring to summer. To celebrate this sunny season, we have crafted a dessert that we hope will remind you of a few of your favorite things. With the ripe stone fruit of summer, the fresh zing of lemon zest and floral flourishes of elderflower, this pie is a dish of ethereal pleasure.
Apple & Stone Fruit Sunshine Pie
- 4 apples, your variety of choice (we like honeycrisp)
- 4 small or 2 large white peaches
- 3 apricots, pitted
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 meyer lemon
- 2 tablespoons elderflower liqueur (optional)
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom
- 1 pinch nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons flour or ⅓ cup ground instant tapioca
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Your favorite double pie crust (store bought is fine)
- To begin, prepare the fruit. Peel the apples and peaches with a paring knife, core the apples and pit the peaches and apricots. Cut the apples in half and thinly slice into half-moon shapes. Slice the apricots and peaches in slightly larger pieces.
- Zest and juice the lemon into a large bowl, then add the elderflower liqueur, the spices (cinnamon, cardamom, and nutmeg), and salt. Give it a quick stir with a wooden spoon.
- Add the sliced fruit to the mixture, gently coating the fruit. Add the brown sugar and continue to coat until distributed.
- Allow this mixture to macerate for at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
- Once ready to cook, preheat oven to 425˚F.
- To thicken the filling, add the tapioca or flour to the filling mixture and microwave for 4 minutes, stirring halfway through.
- Roll out the bottom pie crust into a 9-inch pie pan and pour filling into the unbaked shell. Add the top crust, slice a small vent in the center and pinch around the sides to seal. Feel free to lattice the top or crimp the edges if desired.
- Place the pie in the center of the preheated oven for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350˚F and continue baking for 40-50 minutes, until the pie is golden and the fruit is slowly bubbling. We recommend covering the edges of your pie with aluminum foil for the last 20 minutes of baking to ensure the crust does not get too dark.
- Allow the pie to cool then dig in!
Pair this pie with whatever wine you please! We recommend enjoying the feisty fruity flavors of this lightly sweetened pie with our lovely Fume Blanc. There’s nothing better than just sipping on a wine you love, with a dish you’ve made, and people you enjoy. Cheers to that!
In honor of Mother’s Day, we have rounded up recipes for moms of all kinds. Whether you’re aiming for breakfast in bed, a brunch spread, a pretty picnic, or getting help from little ones, there’s a recipe ready for you! Make this mother’s day one to remember.
This comforting dish can be prepped ahead of time and then served right out of the oven, hot and fresh! It’s perfect for busy families and breakfast lovers alike.
These protein-packed breakfast “cups” are creative and delicious. If you like a savory breakfast with minimal cleanup, then it’s time to grab your muffin tin and get started!
Arguably one of the most classic breakfast foods, this recipe elevates the humble pancake with a hearty serving of nuts and a healthy dose of agave syrup.
For anyone looking to make something new, these pies are a fresh take on a savory and flavorful breakfast, all baked into a simple homemade crust.
Especially good for our plant-based or health-conscious families, this nutritious muesli comes together in a breeze and can be made ahead of time to simplify your day!
Can you imagine biting into a freshly baked, lightly sweet, and perfectly toasted crumpet? Add a little butter and we’re head over heels! These are surprisingly easy, so why not give it a try?
An especially gorgeous option for our active and health-conscious moms, we think this smoothie is best served next to a bouquet of flowers.
Since we love to feature Italian elements in our cuisine, we are enchanted by this colorful take on French Toast, using the festive flavors of Panettone.
This recipe is a perfect way to make something quick with thought and care! If you have little ones who may want to help, this is a great recipe to get them involved!
The Rubino Estates Famiglia maintains a healthy appreciation for pizza of all kinds, so we’re very excited to make it in breakfast form!
As April winds down, we wanted to take one last close look at the golden charm of our Riserva Chardonnay. From the aroma to the finish, we enjoy this smooth, floral, bright, and buttery beauty all year long. Here, we’re breaking down the notes and essences this wine has to offer. Let your palate be delighted and give it a try!
Vanilla Bean & Clove
These pleasant notes of spice and vanilla come from the barrel fermentation and aging process of our Chardonnay
Citrus notes from the fruit meet a touch of toastiness from the oak barrel, swirling in a gorgeous lemon-bar aroma.
Notes of honey are more common in New World Chardonnays than those you might find in Europe. We are no exception!
Subtle notes of this summer stone fruit make it especially appropriate for warm-weather sipping!
Generally found in Chardonnay from cooler climates or earlier harvests, we are pleased with this fresh flavor swirling throughout the profile of this wine.
Orange Blossom & Honeysuckle
Appearing both in the aroma and on the palate, these light floral elements round out the experience of each sip with a delicate finale.
Don't let this month slip away without getting some Chardonnay!
In honor of Earth day, we felt it appropriate to put our new vines in the spotlight. After the 2021 harvest, we removed about 4 acres of vines along the entrance to the estate. This block of Petite Sirah vines was due for retirement, allowing us an important chance to replant the block. Our winemaker carefully selected the clones that would be used in the new planting. In the wine world, vines within a specific varietal can be selected based on certain genetic traits, including resistance to disease or enhanced fruit quality. We chose vigorous and luxurious vines containing incredible genetic potential. Now, this block boasts brand new Zinfandel and Petite Sirah vines which will one day be capable of producing grapes worthy of our Landmark Collection’s quality and esteem. In the meantime, we have the pleasure of seeing the infant vines grow up!
In the Fall of 2021, these vines were ready to retire.
In January of 2022, the soil was tilled and enriched with nutrients after the old vines were removed.
By March, the trellis system was set up and the vines planted. In the foreground of this photo, experienced Cabernet Sauvignon vines look on in anticipation.
Now in April 2022, we have the honor of seeing the first sprouts and leaves from the fledgling vines. We are very excited for what the future will hold!
Happy Earth Day!
The springtime sunshine is coming out, and we’re in the mood for something especially refreshing. If you want to try something new and delicious, then it’s time for a glass or two of Rosé Sangria! Here at Rubino Estates, we offer two different Rosé wines from two famous Italian varietals: Sangiovese and Nebbiolo. Our Salute Rosé features the coppery pink beauty of Sangiovese and our Nebbiolo Rosé shines with fragrance and fruitiness. While delicious on their own, both make for show-stopping Rosé Sangria. Depending on your favorite flavors, we have three recipes for you! Try these:
Vibrant Strawberry & Stone Fruit
- 3 nectarines or peaches, stoned and sliced
- 200g strawberries, sliced
- 1 bottle Rosé
- Juice of 1 orange
- 1 tbsp golden caster sugar
- 50ml orange liqueur (we used Grand Marnier)
- 300ml sparkling water
- Small handful mint sprig
~ Recipe from BBC Good Food ~
Fresh Citrus Spree
- 1 bottle Rosé
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 cups club soda (grapefruit Le Croix)
- 1 cup triple sec
- 1 cup gin
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 grapefruit, juiced
- 3 cups various sliced citrus of your choice
~ Recipe from The Modern Proper ~
Bourbon & Berry
- 1 bottle Rosé
- 1 cup pink grapefruit juice
- 3/4 cup bourbon
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup Chambord (raspberry liqueur)
- 2 cups watermelon balls
- 1 1/2 cups fresh sliced strawberries
- 6 ounces fresh raspberries
~ Recipe from A Spicy Perspective ~
Once you pick the recipe you love, combine all of the ingredients except the bubbly water, if used, and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. When you serve it, make sure to garnish with your favorite fruit and a sugar-rimmed glass if you’re feeling fancy!
For an unbeatable deal (and lots of Rosé for sipping or to make into Sangria)
check out our Sunset Case, available for only $99 for a limited time!
This Tuesday, April 12th, is National Grilled Cheese Sandwich day. At Rubino Estates, we like to think that there’s something worth celebrating every day of the year. Of course, this holiday is one we are very excited to celebrate, since it sounds like the perfect excuse to test out some of the best cheese and wine pairings in all the creamy toasty beauty of a grilled cheese sandwich. Below, we have listed our favorite elegant grilled cheese alongside delicious wine pairings, because grilled cheese can be fancy too! After all, a bottle of wine turns any evening into an occasion.
For this lightly oaked Sauvignon blanc, we recommend layering a nutty havarti over soft focaccia. Gently heat to perfection with a cast-iron skillet with a flavorful layer of herb butter to create the perfect toasted crust.
One reason we love our Wine of the Month is that it is difficult to go wrong with cheese and this wine! Right now, we’re in love with a classy grilled cheese of fontina melted into challah bread with thinly sliced d’anjou pears and shredded arugula.
This rare Rosé wine, featured in our Sunset Case, is exactly the dose of intrigue you need in your wine cellar. Pour a glass alongside grilled ciabatta bread with a generous layer of fig jam and buttery baked brie, and you’ll feel your taste buds sing!
Just like Nebbiolo, this wine is an elusive Italian classic that deserves all the attention. We’re pairing this sexy wine with a gorgeous grilled cheese, of course! Manchego and fuji apple, melted into rustic bread, with just a drizzle of wildflower honey.
Cabernet is flavor’s best friend, and grilled cheese is no exception. We’re adding a few generous slices of smoked ham along with mature cheddar between two slices of homemade artisan sourdough.
The flavors of the Old World shine in this Estate-grown Barbera and our favorite combinations of flavor. Try your hand at homemade roasted tomato spread with capers, layered with asiago and fontina, grilled onto thick-cut bread.
Play with bold flavors to create the perfect companion for our Petite Sirah. We enjoy a grilled cheese with red pesto (made with sundried tomatoes) and an ample helping of swiss cheese, all melted into traditional rye bread.
For this impeccable and bright Sangiovese, we will cook with only the best. This wine is perfect for a splurge on Tuscan Pecorino, fire-roasted red peppers, and a drizzle of truffle oil. A few fine ribbons of fresh basil make this sandwich complete!
This especially exquisite blend brings together Barbera, Petit Verdot, Petite Sirah, and a touch of Cabernet Sauvignon. We chose a crusty baguette, added a delicate layer of stone-ground mustard, and topped it with aged gouda and bacon for a melted masterpiece.
No matter what wine you love, there’s an elevated grilled cheese waiting for it. Which one will you make?
Chardonnay is a ubiquitous classic for all white-wine lovers, and we are here to share the love! Whether you love this golden beauty or haven't yet been convinced, there's no time like the present to pop open a bottle and savor a vibrant sip! Our estate's Chardonnay fruit is a delicious example of what California has to offer. We are proud to declare our 2017 Riserva Collection Chardonnay is the Wine of the Month for April. To aid in enjoyment, we've put together a quick pairing guide so you can become a pairing pro for this luscious California-grown delight.
Dried Apple Slices
Aged Dry Salami
Pan Fried Crab Cakes
Light Tofu Stir-Fry
Vanilla Bean Crème Brûlée
Fresh Apricot Tart
Lemon Zest Shortbread Cookies
Baked Bosc Pears
If you have ever wanted to taste a sip of pure California Sunshine, then we are delighted to share our 2017 Riserva Chardonnay. Bursting with bright aromas and luscious flavors, this wine is perfect for welcoming springtime. Enchant your nose with vanilla, clove and lemon curd laced with essences of honeysuckle and wildflowers. Flavors include honeyed apricot, delicate orange blossom, and toasted s’mores! Each sip is smooth, with pleasant acidity alongside a rich body, and a deliciously lingering finish. Enjoy it while it's only $25 per bottle!
We are joining other Californian wineries in celebrating Women in Wine Day! This initiative, celebrated annually on March 25th, has a mission “to support women in wine, while also providing a sense of empowerment and resources for those seeking to enter the business.” In the Rubino Estates Tasting room, we are proud to have female managerial staff. In this post, we want to highlight the incredible head managers of our Tasting Room: Amy, Patti, Lisa, and Susan.
Amy has been a part of the Rubino Estates staff since opening day nearly ten years ago. She’s happy to pour you a glass of Landmark Barbera, her favorite, and show you the beauty of this area of the Livermore Valley. One of her favorite parts of being part of the team is the relationships that have been built up overtime with our longtime members and customers. She says that when people come to our tasting room, she hopes they’ll be refreshed by our Estate’s stellar natural beauty and the hospitality of a family-owned and operated winery.
Patti’s time in our family began more than a decade, when she worked in the tasting room of our sister winery, Ruby Hill. Like Amy, she joined the Rubino Estates Tasting Room team on day one. Her favorite Rubino Estates wine is the gorgeous Riserva Petite Sirah, though she also enjoys Sauvignon Blancs and Pinot Noirs—especially from the Santa Lucia Highlands. She treasures the relationships here at the tasting room, both with Wine Club members and with members of the staff. As she puts it, “Working at Rubino is not a job, it’s a pleasure!”
Lisa has been here at Rubino for 4 years, and brings a smile with her every day. Her favorite Rubino Estates wine was the elusive 2018 Riserva Malbec, a limited edition wine that sold out quickly. She says her favorite part of working here isn’t the wines, though--it’s the people. She loves that there are always new people to meet and new things to learn while working in the Tasting Room. One piece of wine advice she likes to share is to not leave wine bottles open too long. If you aren’t finishing it, make sure you seal it and enjoy it tomorrow!
Susan joined the Rubino Estates staff one year ago, and is the newest member of the Tasting Room’s managerial team. She already feels like an old friend to many of us! She says she can’t choose a favorite wine--it’s whatever is in her glass! Working at Rubino Estates lets her enjoy wines in her favorite styles from her favorite regions, like the Super Tuscans from central Italy. She says that working in the Rubino Estates tasting room means serving good wines to good people. What more could you ask for?
These incredible women help make Rubino Estates the place to be. This #womeninwineday make it your goal to thank your favorite hard working women!
Can you predict the future? Perhaps you would like to taste it!
In the wine world, you might just have a chance to do both.
What are Wine Futures?
Quite simply, wine futures are wines that have been made but have not yet been bottled. Wines that are blends of several varietals, like our Club-exclusive wines, will already be combined and aging together. The oak barrel or cask that they are stored in has not given its final touches, so there is an element of youth to these wines In fact, in Bordeaux, wine futures are referred to as “en primeur” which translates to “in youth.” Wines sold en primeur may be bottled months or years after tasting from the barrel. Once bottled, the wines will be available to those who purchased.
How do you get the wine out of the barrel?
Oxidation caused by extended contact with air is the enemy of wine, so it is important to keep barrels sealed off. Every barrel is equipped with a single slat, called a stave, which has a hole for access. Generally, these holes are stopped up with a rubber plug called a “bung” to protect the wine inside from the air. To sample the futures inside the barrels, we use a device called a “wine thief,” a tubular pipette designed to perfectly “steal” tastes of wine.
What is different about a wine future and how is the wine going to change?
One of the reasons for extended barrel aging is to allow oak character to balance the fruit and to give the natural tannins time to integrate. Tasting wine futures allows you to appreciate the character of the fruit itself, which lays the foundation for the eventual wine’s overall profile. Tasting futures is a great way to put your palate to the test and gain intimate insight into the process of your favorite wines. If you like it in the barrel, imagine it in the bottle! Futures allow you to preview and buy what you’ll really love.
Why buy a future wine?
If you want to secure access to limited edition wines that sell out fast, this is your chance! Some vintages are gone before you know it, and buying futures assures the chance to have these wines won’t pass you by. Even more, these wines are sold at their lowest prices ever. When you purchase a future, you are purchasing far below retail value. It’s an investment! Futures also offer the unique chance to buy something now that will mature and come to fruition later, making it perfect for milestone celebrations like birthdays, anniversaries, promotions, and retirement.
Who can buy wine futures?
In classic Bordeaux futures tastings, these exclusive pre-sales are open to a select few importers, journalists, retailers, and critics. Here at Rubino Estates, we are opening our barrels for one night only to our beloved Club Members! We want to share our futures with wine lovers who know that the best things in life are worth waiting for. Our Futures Night will be hosted Saturday, April 23rd, and will feature some of the best wine futures from all over our Estate. Tickets must be purchased in advance and are on sale now!
Not a wine club member but you’d like to participate in Futures Night? You can join today!
Did you know that March 28th is Black Forest Cake Day? This sounds like the kind of day we’d like to celebrate! Traditionally, Black Forest cake features chocolate, cherries, whipped cream, and a special cherry brandy known as Kirschwasser. To make this cake properly requires the freshest, highest-quality ingredients you can source, as well as a fair amount of time to make it all from scratch. This week, we’re putting in some practice while stripping down the classic recipe to make cupcakes. Of course, we can’t resist putting a little Rubino Estates spin on the recipe with a few splashes of red wine! We recommend Primitivo, with its seductive bouquet of beautiful fruit flavors.
- 1 ¼ cup all purpose flour
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 ¾ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup whole milk
- ¼ cup red wine
- 2 cups cherries, fresh or frozen
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon Kirsch, or other cherry liquor
Stabilized Pink Whipped Cream
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream, cold
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons flavorless powdered gelatin
- 2 tablespoons red wine
- In a large pot over medium heat, combine the cherries, sugar, and cornstarch. Cook, stirring frequently, until the cherries begin to break down and the filling starts to simmer and thicken, about 15-20 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla and Kirsch. Allow to cool completely before filling the cupcakes.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a 12 cup pan with cupcake liners.
- Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the melted butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla together until combined.
- Stir in about half of the flour mixture. Then stir in the milk, wine, and the remaining flour mixture and mix until fully combined.
- Pour about ¼ cup of batter into each cupcake liner, until about halfway full.
- Bake at 350°F for 18-22 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
- Remove from pan and let cool on wire rack. Let cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
Stabilized Whipped Cream
- Add the wine to a bowl and sprinkle the unflavored gelatin on top. Allow to sit for a few minutes.
- Transfer the gelatin mixture to the microwave and microwave for 5-10 seconds, until the gelatin is fully dissolved. Stir the mixture, then set aside to cool slightly.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand mixer, combine the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Whip the mixture until it starts to thicken and soft peaks form, then turn the mixer to low speed. Slowly pour in the gelatin mixture and mix on low until well combined. Increase the mixer to medium speed and continue mixing until stiff peaks form.
- Note: if the gelatin mixture thickens up too much before you add it to the whipped cream, just pop it back in the microwave for 3-5 seconds. It should be a pour-able consistency.
- Once the cupcakes are fully cooled, use a cupcake corer or knife to remove the center of each cupcake and discard.
- Spoon or pipe the cooled cherry filling into each cupcake.
- Transfer the stabilized whipped cream into a piping bag and pipe swirls on each cupcake, or spread on with a knife, stacking the cream as high as you like.
- Top with a drizzle of red wine syrup and a light dusting of cocoa powder.
Credit: We have adapted this recipe from Kyleigh Sage’s food blog, Barley and Sage.