Sunday, February 13, 2011

Frey Wines, Brad's Raw Chips - And A Road Trip To San Francisco

At the end of last year, my nephew, Brad Gruno, and I took a little road-trip to San Francisco and Redwood Valley - 'wine country'. Ohhh yeahhh.

First stop was Starbucks, so Brad could get some healthy, green tea.
We're both raw foodists, so healthy eating is really important to us!
As a matter of fact, he's the one that got me started on raw food.
Thanks, Brad!!

"On the road again." Sing it Willie Nelson!

We stopped along the way for some healthy, organic fruit to nibble on.
(We eat healthy you know.)

We went to a place that had a dehydrator that could eat Chicago!
Brad's expanding his business and is considering buying this big ol' honkin' thing in the near future.

And to think I was so proud to show him my nine-tray dehydrator, before we left. What a dufus.

Since they were packaging food at that company, everyone had to wear a hair-net.
"Heeere sheee iiis, Miiiss Ameeeriiicaaa."

Ohhhh... I am not a fan of bridges, high places, or deep water!!
After I took the picture, I slammed my eyes shut until we were on the other side!

Did I mention that Brad likes to talk on the phone? A lot.
It puts a smile on his face.

San Francisco, here we come!

By then we were hungry again, so we stopped at one of the restaurants on the pier.
We were going to have 'a salad', since we are so good about what we eat.

I had fish & chips and Brad had shrimp, oysters and chips.
So much for being good. (Ya gotta love a man that wears a bib.)

Here we are mingling with the crowd. (Who's watching that kid?)
I was hoping the stranger that was nice enough to take our picture,
would also be nice enough not to take off with my expensive camera!

One of the locals, giving us an earful. Sorry dude, no left-overs.

Brad and a pretty girl - nothing new there.

Alcatraz and the Cat in the Hat together in one picture. That's just wrong.

Wheeeeeeeee! Boing, boing, boing.

Oh, good grief! Here we go again!!


Almost there?!! Please!!


Heading to Redwood Valley -

And there it is - what we all want, "the light at the end of the tunnel".


Hello? Hello? Can you hear me now?

So pretty.

Wine country!

Our final destination - the beautiful Frey Vineyards.

This is a painting, waiting to happen! I may have to give it a shot.
(Before we left, Katrina Frey, invited me to come down for a few days and be
"the artist in residence"! Be still my heart!!!! Thank you, Katrina!!)

Here is Katrina Frey, Executive Director, and our new friend - a kindred spirit.

Here she is, giving Brad a tour of the warehouse, where the wine is stored.
I suddenly wished that I could drink wine. (Allergic to grapes.)

The wine is kept in these 'things'. (A technical term.)

After the tour, they had a little party - Frey Wine and "Brad's Raw Chips".
A delicious combination!

As some of you know, Brad is the owner of "Brad's Raw Chips".
Please check out his website & blog for store locations and other great info. His chips are the best!!

Please also check out "Frey Vineyards", makers of organic and biodynamic wines.
The first ones in America to do so. Look at the variety!
Brad wanted to meet the Frey's, because he's considering going into the wine business and they have the best organic and biodynamic wines.
The story and history of the Frey family is fascinating.

Katrina's dad joined the party!
He was delightful - a family tradition it seems.
It was almost time to go, but before we left, there was something Brad wanted to do -

Let's put some of those cases of wine in the car!!
(He was probably wishing he'd rented a van.)

And off we went. More driving... more phone calls.

Leaving the wine country and heading home.
After awhile, we both got hungry again. Really hungry.
We joked that we would stop at the first restaurant we found, near the highway,
even if it was an IHop! We found a Denny's.
Brad said he could probably eat there if he had 'a salad'. I said, I could too.
The waiter came, and without hesitation, I ordered a grilled cheese sandwich and fries.
He ordered chicken fried steak, fries, and topped it off with pumpkin pie and whipped cream.
Two raw foodists on the road. (Willpower anyone?!)

That's some goood stuff!!

Ohhh yeahhh!!
Unfortunately, my stomach didn't agree. And then I got a headache!
(I'm such a delicate petal.)

Heading out once more.


I love how the landscape changes from area to area.
(And that we're finally done with the bridges!!)

Brad, stretching his legs - and arms. Ready for take-off.


He remembered to stop for gas this time... and to make a call.

We got to my house, he dropped me off and went on his merry way.
To make another call, I'm sure.
Bye-bye, Brad. It was great fun! Hope to see you soon!!

Call me.

"Once, during prohibition, I was forced to live for days on nothing but food and water."
- W. C. Fields

"My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four, unless there were three other people."
- Orson Welles

"I'm not saying my wife's a bad cook, but she uses a smoke alarm as a timer."
- Bob Monkhouse

"The food here is terrible and the portions are too small."
- Woody Allen

Here's more info about Brad, raw food and my artwork.

There are SO many things to love!
I love "Followers" and comments too!
(Thank you.)

Signing off for now,


  1. Gabriele- Wow! What a wonderful day you had...and what a handsome man to spend the day with! I felt like I was along for the ride..loved the Cat-in-the-Hat...only on the West Coast!;>) xxoo Diana

  2. I enjoyed this post. It was like I was on the trip with you guys. lol Beautiful. :)

  3. Diana, Yes, it was a lot of fun.
    I took over 300 photographs, so it was really hard trying to choose which ones to use!
    But the Cat in the Hat had to be included. :)

  4. Janet, Thanks for the nice words! I'm glad you liked it.

  5. gabriele!! that was funny!! had some good laughs! and you look fabulous!! (whtever you eat is doing you good!) i pity you driving to san fran with brad..i am like you! i dont like bridges tunnels and people who talk on the phone while driving on and in them! the boing boing boing made me laugh the hardest.

  6. Walls, I'm glad you liked the post and that it made you laugh. :)
    And thanks for the compliment! Nice!
    Since you've taken many a road trip with Brad, I'm sure you know all too well how much the man loooves his phone! :)
    We had the best time!!

  7. What a lovely trip/post. Love all those pictures you shared with us. Always been my dream to go there; but I don't think it will ever happen. Thank you!

  8. Rita, thanks for the nice words.
    And never say never! Your trip to San Francisco might be right around the corner! :) I'll keep my fingers crossed for you.

  9. You had a blast didn't you....and you can only eat what is glad you jumped right on in and enjoyed!

  10. Whew! I felt as if I went on an exhilarating cross country trip with you and Brad! thanks you! I had a ball. Wonderful photos, and I love seeing you happy like that! Beautiful post.

  11. Lynette, Yes we did!! And I agree. Do the best you can without stressing. I hope he comes back soon. There are a lot of places I'd like to visit! :)

  12. Angella, I'm sooo happy that you liked our little trip!
    You were so quiet, I didn't even know you were there. :)
    Yes, I had a ball and I'm looking forward to his next visit!
    As always, thanks for the kind words.
    Sending love, my friend.

  13. I lived near San Francisco for fourteen years and loved to tour the wineries. Thanks for the photos. They brought back memories. Beautiful country!

  14. Hi dear,

    i hope you had a nice trip! The pictures look amazing :) i hope i can visit San Francisco one day :)

    Have a nice weekend :)

    Just Cake Girl :)

  15. you had me laughing out loud and reading this post to john! (he remembers when i was excited about meeting brad!=)

    sounds like you had a great time! love what you two ate at denny's but sorry you felt sick. i'm a delicate petal too.=)

  16. Grandmother, Glad you were taken back. You're right, beautiful country!! I can't wait to go there and do some paintings!!

  17. Just Cake Girl, Yes, we had a great time on that trip!
    Glad you liked the pictures. You never know, your trip to San Francisco might be right around the corner! Life is full of surprises. :)

  18. kelli, the other delicate petal -
    I still get a kick out of you having met Brad, and what a small world it really is!
    Glad the post made you laugh. :) That Brad's one crazy dude. :)
    I've been eating raw since I got back and am feeling sooo much better!!
    The S.A.D. just does NOT agree with me!! Especially when it's cooked! Hope you run into Brad again, one of these days.

  19. Sigh... I left my heart in San Francisco back in 1973... haven't been able to get over it since. Great tour!