This is the view outside my window here in scenic San Rafael, California... Halfway between San Francisco and Sonoma. Over the next two days I'll be visiting local wineries (Sonoma, Healdsburg, Windsor, etc.) that specialize in organic/green winemaking, and will report on these wineries over the next couple of months, taking a day each week to focus on a different producer.
It's interesting to be in an internationally recognized wine region... I've visited vineyards in other parts of the US (Arkansas and New Mexico come to mind), and I've glimpsed them from the train in Italy, but this will be my first, direct exposure to the glories of NoCal viticulture. Stay tuned!
My stay here is sponsored by the Four Points by Sheraton hotel here in San Rafael. As a good Southern boy my instinctual reaction to hospitality is to offer to mow the grass, cook dinner, or help with the laundry, but for a trip like this I'm willing to sit back and accept the generosity. It's convenient, far enough form San Francisco to avoid the traffic but close enough if you want to see the city, and of course it's a great jumping off point for the nearby wine regions. If you're going to be in the area, consider this hotel, and tell 'em Benito sent you.