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April 2019 Issue | Vol. 2 Iss. 1

Golf courses - Craft beverages - Luxury travel destinations

Meet the Women Winemakers of San Diego

Resor t on the Island

April 2019 Issue | Vol. 2 Iss. 1

Contents Featured Articles 34 26


CuisinArt Golf Club On the Island of Anguilla By Tim Cotroneo 6 12

Women Winemakers of San Diego By Noreen Kompanik

Link & Libations Magazine is created for the Craft Beverage Industry, the Golf Industry, and Travel Destinations. Designed to enhance Social Media and Digital Marketing, we proudly produce this Luxury Travel Magazine in digital form.

A Tale of Two Wineries Plus a Brewery and Distillery! By Cindy Ladage Marina Mazatlån Golf Course One of Mexico’s Best By Jed Vaughn

Leveraging technology to produce a familar medium that is interactive and engaging, delivering multi-media content to the palm of the readers hand.

18 Margaritas Poolside Atop the Fabulous Freeman Hotel By Jed Vaughn

Editor Nate Love


The Resort at Longboat Key Club The Best of Resort Life on Island Time By Tim Bona


Old Kinderhook Crown Jewel of Lake of the Ozarks By Scott Kendall


Betting on Seven At Desert Mountain in Scottsdale By Tim Cotroneo


Culture, Cuisine, Chocolate, and Wine at Historic Groot Constantia Estate By Elsa Dixon


London Contemporary An Art Tour By Mary Charlebois

Design and Layout Nate Love National Sales Sean Levitt All editorial inquiries:

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Elsa Dixon Noreen Kompanik Mary Charlebois Jed Vaughn LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Scott Kendall Tim Bona Cindy Ladage Tim Cotroneo


From the editor

A Year with Links & Libations

March marked the one-year anniversary of Links & Libations debut on the craft beverage and golf worlds! It has been an exciting ride for sure. We created Links & Libations Magazine for people just like you. Golfers and weekend hackers, drinkers (sorry... I meant enthusiasts) and sippers, jet setters and stay-cationers, this is for you. We are very proud and honored to be able to bring to you the personalities and the stories behind the destinations. We also created Links & Libations for those destinations, to tell their stories and encourage you to visit someday. Maybe you’ll visit next month or maybe you’re planning trips as part of a 5 year plan. We would like to thank the destinations that have worked with our contributors to be able to experience everything they have to offer and spread the word. Moving forward this coming year, you can expect the same quality photographs as well as the same engaging story telling. As those things stay consistent, you can also expect new features including a monthly spotlight on a mixologist with their favorite drink recipes and a ‘how to’ video includ-

ed, so you know just what to do. Also, we are working on a restaurant and bar monthly feature. It might be a Michelin Star chef in Chicago. It might be a hard to find dive bar with just the right amount of character. Either way, if it has a story to tell, we want to tell it to you. You’ll also be seeing, Links & Libations Magazine in more places. If you use Apple products, you may notice us on Apple News as we were just added to that library. We were also picked up by other curated content sources that will make L&L more visible on social networks. So as we head into Spring, with travel and summer cocktails on our minds, We would like to thank each of our readers, contributors, and distributors for your continued support. We recommend reading this issue to hold you over between rounds of The Master’s this week. By the way, who is your pick to bring home a(nother) green jacket this year? Let us know at Here’s to keeping your drink, and your cart, right side up. Cheers!

Nate Love Editor

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Interactive Multimedia Magazine That’s right! Links & Libations is an interactive magazine. just tap on the Internet links and videos in the stories to view them right here in the magazine. Links & Libations is best viewed on the issuu app. click on the button to download the app now for free.

- Content Marketing - Paid advertising campaigns - reputation management - Audience Development - social media automation for the Craft spirit and golf industries

Social Media marketing for you business 262-2496488

Plus a Brewery and a Distillery! By Cindy Ladage


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Photos by Cindy Ladage


ndiana is filled with wines; in fact, there is even a website A Guide to Indiana’s Fine Wineries that visitors can use when trying to find just where to go!

The Oliver Winery & Vineyards When traveling south of Indianapolis Indiana in Monroe County, wine lovers can visit Indiana’s oldest winery, the Oliver Winery & Vineyards. Besides being the oldest, the Oliver Winery is also the largest winery east of the Mississippi River. The Oliver Winery has been ranked among Travel + Leisure’s top 25 wineries to visit in the U.S. in 2017. In 2018, Wine Business Monthly named the winery as one of the top 50 wineries in the U.S. What makes Sarah Anderson, Marketing Director for Oliver Winery excited is that the Oliver Winery was selected as one of the top wineries by their customers from reviews on YELP. Sarah told me and Sara Broers, of Travels with Sara, this fact when we toured the winery in mid-March.

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Before ever entering the winery, visitors will be taken with the lovely rock formations outside and the beauty of view. On a hosted trip, we had the opportunity to learn about the history of this, the oldest winery in the state of Indiana. William Oliver was a Professor at Indiana University when he started making wine as a hobby. He planted a vineyard just north of what is now the winery (and once was a junkyard) in what they refer to as the Bloomington Uplands. After Professor William Oliver’s hobby became a fruitful venture, he opened a commercial winery and the Oliver winery was born. Besides being a professor, William Oliver was also an attorney and was instrumental in passing legislation allowing small wineries to exist in the State of Indiana. The Indiana Small Winery Act passed in 1971 and the Oliver Winery opened in 1972. The centerpiece that made the winery successful was Professor Oliver’s Camelot Mead, a wine mixed with honey. In 1972 Bill Oliver, William Oliver’s son, came on the scene. After returning to school, he came back to the winery in the 1980s with his wife Kathleen and together they made the winery a world class organization using their business acumen and expanding the winery. In 2006, the winery became employee owned. With around 100 employees, there are about 40 full- time and 60 part-time. Sarah Anderson exLINKS & LIBATIONS

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plained that benefits are dependent on how many hours employees work not their work status. Wines at the Oliver Winery made from grapes grown at their vineyard are offered under the Creekbend

label. Other wines are imported and then blended onsite. “The Creekbend vineyard is three miles north of the winery,” Sarah Anderson added. “It is 54 acres and it is comprised of varietals. We focus on what wines grow here best. We understand from grape to glass. We also source wines and talk openly about our growers all over the country.” Dennis Dunham is the winemaker and Bernie Parker is the vineyard manager. After Sarah Anderson took us through the rare opportunity to see the bottling area, team member Julie D. presided over the rest of our tour and offered us a tasting — sharing that the soft red is their biggest seller. Last we enjoyed a picnic at the winery, an enjoyable treat with crackers, meats and cheeses that up to five Cedar Creek Distillery. This is the only place in the can enjoy indoors during inclement weather and State of Indiana to have all three, a winery, a brewoutdoors during the spring and summer days. ery, and a distillery at one location! After our tour of the Oliver Winery, our next stop The buildings have a distinctive country appeal was the Cedar Creek Winery, Brewing Company, with a very neat old truck out front that has been and Distillery. the site of many family pictures over the years. A windmill and other items set the stage for the CeCedar Creek Winery, Brewing Company, and dar Creek family operation, which is owned by ElsDistillery ner family. In Morgan County Indiana, Molly Scrougham and Mackenzi Dalton took the time to take me and Sara The distinctive look makes sense after learning Broers along with Tosha Daughtery, from the Mor- that the family prior to being in the winery busigan County Conference and Visitors Bureau, on a ness was in the construction industry. Bryce Elstour of their three distinct operations, the Cedar ner said, “My dad and I were in the construction Creek Winery, Cedar Creek Brewing Company and business, then the economy dropped in 2010 and

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dad and I bought this property in April.” “We finished building the business and opened the winery in October of 2010.” The Elsner family expanded their operation quickly. “My wife and I opened the brewery in 2015. We will soon celebrate our three-year anniversary,” Bryce Elsner added.

More Information For more information on what to do and where to eat, when in the area, check out Visit Bloomington and Visit Morgan County there are great dining options. We tried King Dough in Bloomington, Indiana and 21 North Eatery & Cellar in Martinsville, along with Zydeco’s in Mooresville, Indiana. The Come ‘n Git It is a also a great breakfast option at Martinsville!

He continued, “My sister met her now husband, and they established the distillery in 2016, then had the opening in 2017.” Bryce Elsner said his favorite part of the business is the variety of people that come in. “There are the wine, beer, and spirits people. We enjoy the people coming out and the experience.” “This is the 8th year,” Molly Scrougham said, adding that Bryce’s father Larry had been making wine at home prior to them building the winery. Cedar Creek properties have a laid back atmosphere and whether visitors are looking for wine, beer, or spirits, and best of all, per Sara and I, apple pie shots, you will find it there.


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HOSTS Visit Bloomington @visitbtown Visit Morgan County @visitmorgancounty Visit Indiana @visitIndiana

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M a r i n a M a z at l รก n Golf Course By JED VAUGHN


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Photos by JED VAUGHN


favorite among ex-pats, snowbirds, and locals alike, the Marina Golf Course on the North end of MazatlĂĄn shines brightly in a city commonly referred to as The Pearl of the Pacific. The 18-hole par 72 course opened its doors in 2009, and the sprawling layout was designed by David Fleming. This set of links is rated one of the top ten in Mexico. Salt tolerant Paspalum grass throughout the course lends itself to the eco-friendly side of things which is a nice attribute. With many wide greens and fair-

ways, it can still be a challenging 18 holes, and I found it to be a fun course to play. Plenty of obscured hazards are not visible from the tees. This makes it a good idea to refer to the illustrations at the tee or on the scorecard before cutting loose. It’s Saturday, and every Saturday at Marina Golf Course there is an optional skins game available to play. It requires at least three registered golfers per team, costs 300 pesos to enter, and each registrant plays off their certified handicap. The accumulated funds are divided between winners of each hole.

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“Another feature of a round on Saturday is free tequila shots.” A par three win goes to closest to pin, and the par four & fives are awarded to the best birdie of the day. I had a couple friends with me that frequently play at the course, so it was game on. The days round didn’t net me anything, but my friend Pablo managed to capture the prize of more than 1700 pesos ($90.00 US) on the 13th hole with a 50-foot putt for birdie… nice! Another feature of a round on Saturday is free tequila shots. About every other hole, a cart rolls up with a sporting a bottle of Jose Cuervo. The lovely attendant pours shots for those imbibing with the popular local libation. The cart is also stocked with beer and snacks available for purchase, and in the warm


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sunshine here on the central pacific coast of Mexico, a cold cerveza is a welcome and refreshing treat for a relaxing and leisurely round of golf. Currently, a small structure referred to as the “snack shack” adequately accommodates the front desk, rental club area, pro shop, administrative office, and a small kitchen. There are plans for a full clubhouse to be constructed next to the existing facility sometime this year. The 1st hole is a 356-yard par 4 from the black tees. Like many of the links at Marina, it’s long and straight, but consists of gently rolling terrain which obstructs views to the pin. Throughout the course, you’ll experience views

of the Mazatlán high-rise hotels to the south, and the Sierra Madre mountains to the North. Lagoons and boats cruising the canal connected to the Mazatlán Marina offer an added flare to the landscapes. The first link also affords a traditional “Breakfast Ball”, which is the equivalent of a mulligan… with the exception that it is only usable on the 1st hole. There are four par fives, the longest of which is 602 yards from the black tees. The course rounds out with 10 par fours, and four par three holes. The front nine is extremely wide-open terrain with very few trees lining the fairways. The back nine has more water with contemporary residential structures rimming the course.

There’s also quite a bit of ongoing construction throughout the residential areas near the fairways. My favorite hole at Marina Mazatlán Golf Course was the 17th. It’s 173-yard par three with a large row of hedges in front of a decent sized body of water. It can be a little deceiving as there is also a bit of an elevation rise from the tees to the pin. I also found it to be the most eye-appealing link on the course. The green is surrounded by flora. After crossing a picturesque wooden bridge through the trees, you approach the sloped chipping area in front of the green. The course finishes with the long 602-yard dog leg right par five. This one has hidden hazards and opportunities for blind shots to the tee if you’re game. The Marina Golf Course is one you’ll want to spend a day at if you find yourself in the Mazatlán area. I recommend getting an early tee time, especially if you’re in a skins game or tournament as the wind tends to pick up in the early afternoon. After a round, you can ponder the day with a delicious shrimp or chicken quesadilla, a cheese burger or hot dog, and a cold beer or two in the small LINKS & LIBATIONS

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outdoor seating area at the snack shack. Marina Mazatlán Golf Course is centered in the heart of one of Mexico’s largest marina marketplaces. Mazatlán is also the billfish capital of the world. Minutes away from the course, you can access charter fishing for marlin, dorado, swordfish, sailfish, and bottom fish. If you’re in the area to golf, be sure to check out the multitude of other great activities and local doings exclusive to this magical area on the central pacific coast of Mexico. The cost of a round is $850 pesos. That’s approximately $45.00 USD and is competitive for this area that constantly receives a massive influx of visitors and tourists. To set up a tee time or for more information, visit: For more information on Mazatlán’s long list of things to do while visiting the area, visit:

Margaritas Poolside Atop the Fabulous Freeman Hotel By Jed Vaughn


small elevator car takes you up to the 9th floor. You can hear the wheels and gears of the 1944 mechanical antiquity turning as you rise and exit to the ballroom level. Then two flights of stairs… and voila! A view so magnificent it takes your breath away. Complimenting the view is a small swimming pool, hot tub, and wet bar. You are high atop the Freeman Hotel in Old Mazatlán. This 360-degree catbird seat of a view reveals the city, the ocean to the south, and the Sierra Madre mountain range to the north. People are dining, nursing their favorite beverage, and taking in the view on the open-air patio. It’s truly a sight to behold and is considered a favorite hangout by not only visitors & tourists, but many who live in the area also. Hotel Posada Freeman is a landmark building situated on the edge of the Centro Historic District. The area was established centuries ago and is full of 19th and 20th century structures. The Freeman was built in 1944 and was the first high-rise building in Northwest Mexico.


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The accommodations at the Freeman are modern and comfortable. Rooms feature two double beds and all the usual amenities including safety box, internet connectivity, coffee maker, ample parking, and laundry service. A delicious breakfast buffet is also included with each night’s stay. Oceanside accommodations feature a small veranda with an amazing view overlooking the Malecon with fantastic sunsets behind a deep blue sea.

or more art galleries, the Angela Peralta Theater, Archeological and Historical Museum, the Centro Market, and El Faro Lighthouse are all just minutes away. Also, just a block away is a bicycle rental shop. You can peddle the entire Malecon up to the golden zone. You’ll discover more beaches, find a beach palapa for an incredible seafood lunch and a beverage, and explore the area on two wheels in just a few hours.

The Best Western property is also equipped with a business center and two ballrooms capable of accommodating 120 people each. The venue is perfect for weddings, business meetings, and large dinner gatherings. The ballrooms offer the same fantastic ocean view as the rooftop, but through windows rather than open air. There’s also a street level dining area just off the lobby. They serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily with a pleasing view and atmosphere. Locals frequent the restaurant, particularly for the extensive breakfast buffet offered only on the weekends. The Freeman’s location on Olas Altas makes it easy to access a plethora of cultural and historical points of interest. Plazuela Machado, a dozen

Indeed, one could spend weeks exploring the area and not run out of new and interesting activities. Ranging from playing and lying on the beach, to touring the islands, and more. But enjoying a margarita poolside atop the fabulous Freeman Hotel is truly a highlight not to be missed. Drink in hand with the bright red orb sinking behind an oceanic blue horizon… ahhh yes… just what the doctor ordered for a relaxing way to cap off a perfect day in paradise.


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Check it out for yourself:

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Best Bar or Tavern THE BEST OF LAKE GENEVA 2016


On the Island of Anguilla By Tim Cotroneo n 2014, Scott DeLong needed answers to two important questions before interviewing for Iisland, the position of Head Golf Professional on the island of Anguilla. “I wasn’t familiar with the so I Googled to find out where it was. I was also eager to see what kind of golf course they had.”

DeLong learned that Anguilla was the most northern of the Leeward Islands in the Caribbean and was home to 33 spectacular beaches. He also discovered that CuisinArt Golf Course was not only owned and operated by a luxury resort of the same name, his new course was designed by none other than Greg Norman.

Photo Courtesy of CuisinART Golf Club LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Upon arriving on Anguilla, DeLong was blown away to see that 15 of CuisinArt’s 18 championship golf holes featured water. Even better, from the CuisinArt clubhouse and restaurant balcony, DeLong was treated to amazing views of Anguilla, the Caribbean Sea, and the neighboring island of St. Martin. Oh What a Feeling With each passing year, Anguilla has gone from under the radar status to one of the most popular islands to vacation. Hardly a week goes by that DeLong doesn’t rub shoulders with an A-list celebrity, a sports superstar, or a visitor who is so blown away by Anguilla’s beauty that they invest in a second home on the island. As for golf, 2019 is a breakthrough year as the 7,000yard 18-hole layout has seen a sizable cash infusion since recovering from Hurricane Irma in 2017. CuisinArt Golf Club now features new Titlelist rental clubs and new Yamaha golf carts with GPS. CuisinArt’s Director of Golf Operations Don Johnson was also given the green light for massive improvements that include a new irrigation system and converting to Better Billy Bunkers with imported silica sand. One of the main takeaways from the CuisinArt golf LINKS & LIBATIONS

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experience is the reminder that despite playing on a course with such magnificent views, there’s a feeling that you’re all by yourself. “This feeling of solitude is amazing. Norman purposely routed the course so you’re rarely along side another hole. When you combine the ocean views, the sounds of waves crashing, and our lush green Bermuda grass, CuisinArt is hard to beat,” DeLong said. Scene Stealers, Yachts, and Tradewinds The visual action starts right from the 384-yard, Par 4, first tee box. On this lead hole, Norman sweeps golfers off their feet with a panoramic view of St. Martin. In you thought that was a fluke, the second hole offers brilliant ocean views while sharing a 16,000-square-foot green with the 10th hole. Depending on what month you’re playing, a golfer never knows what he or she might witness whenever sneaking a glimpse of the Caribbean Sea. In the winter season, neighboring St. Martin is famous for the mega-yachts that frequent the island, and in the month of March, everyone sets their calendars for the Heineken Regatta, the largest warm weather regatta in the world. At some point by the back nine, you realize that An29 | APRIL 2019


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guilla’s trade winds typically have played an integral part in your round. Norman factored the island’s winds when he designed the course. On each hole, golfers should prepare for a slight mind game as to how to approach your tee shot based on whether the wind is at your back, in your face, or if there’s a cross wind. What’s Not to Love? Whereas much of Anguilla was punished by Hurricane Irma, CuisinArt Golf Club escaped relatively unscathed. “Most of our native trees are less than 20 feet tall, so they were able withstand Irma. What’s interesting is we’ve found new grasses that have popped up. Some of the sprouts have

traveled as far as the island of Guadeloupe which is located 170 miles south of us,” DeLong said. The good news is Anguilla is almost totally revitalized since Irma. A great vantage point to daydream about island beaches or reminisce about your golf round is CuisinArt’s Santorini Restaurant. The whitewashed Mediterranean-style structure not only provides an awesome backdrop for CuisinArt’s Par 4, 430-yard finishing hole, it’s a perfect setting for lunch or a refreshing cocktail. The elevated perch from the restaurant deck provides some of the best views in all of Anguilla.

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On this deck looking out on St. Martin, DeLong was asked what he finds special about his new home. “When I arrived, I knew very little about Anguilla, and I was single. Now, only four years later, I’m married with two children. On weekends I take my family on picnics to secluded portions of the island. We enjoy island life on some of the most beautiful beach-

es you could ever imagine. CuisinArt Golf Club and Anguilla, what’s not to love?” DeLong said with a smile. Book your trip now:

Women Winemakers of San Diego by Noreen Kompanik


ioneers, trailblazers and stereotype breakers. 14 amazing women in San Diego County are shaking up the world of winemaking. Was this by design or by fate? “The industry chose us,” explains Denise Clarke, co-owner and winemaker of San Diego’s Altipiano Winery. For many vintners, winemaking is a selected or even inherited profession. But some just feel the call and have answered it in grand fashion.


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Photo san diego county Vineyards Denise and 13 other remarkable San Diego women are making award-winning wines and their stories of breaking into the industry are absolutely fascinating. They admit they’re pushing the envelope, but it’s working. The ladies come from all walks of life but enjoy a common bond forged by a shared passion. Their mantra is to take what Mother Nature gives in San Diego’s diverse growing zones and then nurture their vines with love and care. The vineyards know their footprints and through a unique sisterhood, they educate, share and support one another. The result is a blessing of friendship and some incredible fine wines. Sandy Mubarak of Old Coach Vineyards & Winery is recognized as the unofficial “mother of San Diego women winemakers.” She’s been the winemaker at Old Coach for nearly 20 years with her knowledge of winemaking passed down from her mother and grandmother. But Sandy is paying it forward by serving as a mentor to other female winemakers of the region.

Turtle Rock Ridge, a boutique winery and vineyard is nestled in the county’s picturesque Ramona Valley. Wine-maker Laurie Wagner’s story is unbelievably fun and engaging. Her winemaking career dates all the way back to the 8th grade in Elgin, Illinois. Laurie made wine for a speech class demonstration. Her teacher, Mr. Kling was so impressed, he signed her yearbook “To my favorite winemaker.” Perhaps it was fate after all for Laurie believes “there are no mistakes in life.” San Diego County’s devastating 2007 Witch Creek Fire was a game changer on many fronts. But for Laurie, a former school teacher, and her husband Ian, the clearing of the land was a sign and in 2008, they planted the first grapes and began learning the craft of winemaking. They painstakingly matched the grape varietals with the soil, climate and elevations of the property with great success. Per Laurie, their love of agriculture and wine come together and their natural wines express the terroir of San Diego. To that she adds “each bottle is filled 35 | APRIL 2019

with our heart and soul.” It’s no wonder their natural healthy red and white wines have earned numerous competitions. Of particular note is their gutsy and incredibly delicious Chocolate Turtle, a velvety-smooth port with rich chocolate flavor.

ing they started making wine as amateurs in their garage. Their label was actually called Slippery Slope. Jeannine fittingly called her first solo creation Stepping Out, a Merlot that won a gold medal and first place for label design.

Jeannine O’Brien, co-owner and co-winemaker at Highland Valley Vineyards in Escondido has been making wine since 2004. Jeannine says she and her husband Ray are true “garageisites” mean-

Like other San Diego winemakers, Jeannine’s background is not in oenology but rather software technology. In 2007, she and her husband decided to go commercial, purchasing land for their wine-


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Photo Highland Valley Vineyards 37 | APRIL 2019

making enterprise. The transaction was in escrow during the devastating 2007 wildfire. But they forged ahead anyway, planting the first vineyard in 2010, and opened their tasting room in September, 2014. Jeannine, now a Court of Masters Level One Sommelier is currently studying for the Level Two exam. Per Jeannine, her success lies in “making wine the way we love it.” It’s not only blood, sweat and tears that’s put into their Bordeaux-style wines but more “the love of a passion” that inspires and creates their award-winning wines. Success came early as their 2013 Syrah produced in only their second year of commercial winemaking was an impressive double-medal winner. For Linda McWilliams, making award-winning wine is quite different than her previous life as a Speech-Language Pathologist. But when she and hubby Mike decided to venture into the wine business in 2009 and purchased San Pasqual Winery, everything changed. Because of their inexperience, San Pasqual’s winemaker agreed to stay on. But as he became less available, Linda began assuming the winemaking responsibilities. She took a wine production class at a local college. A chemistry class satisfied her pre-requisite requirements for the U.C. Davis Winemaker Certification Program she subsequently completed. Linda’s wines have garnished awards at local, county, state, and international levels. Her incredibly unique Passionfruit Habanero took a double gold at Toast of the Coast competition. When asked about her favorite wines Linda says ‘They are like my children so I love them all. Some just behave better than others given the day.” And as serious as Linda is about wine-making, she stresses that it’s really “all about the fun.” For Denise Clarke from Altipiano Winery, when the devastating 2007 wildfire destroyed their EsconLINKS & LIBATIONS

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dido avocado grove, the disaster was actually a blessing in disguise. Earlier that same year Denise and her husband Peter visited southern Tuscany and fell in love with its vineyards and countryside. After the fire, they were convinced they should plant a vineyard. Denise served in the U.S. Air Force and afterward with the federal government in Human Resources Management, retiring from the Department of the Navy in 2012. Though she had no previous formal training, Denise says that winemaking is in her blood as she recants the story of her grandmother making wine during Prohibition. Her spectacular, award-winning, Italian varietals from the verdant rolling San Pasqual Valley have garnished numerous gold and silver medals at state and international competitions. Denise attributes much of her winemaking success to the mentoring and collaboration with others in the field including these women winemakers. For these amazing ladies, winemaking is more than just a process. They embrace and personify the art and symphony of winemaking. Nature is the orchestra and per Denise Clarke “we are the conductors.� And collectively, they make beautiful music.


Photo Altipiano Vineyard

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The Resort at Longboat Key Club by tim Bona Photos Courtesy of Longboat key club LINKS & LIBATIONS

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o, most of us our familiar with the historical accounts of how the early Spanish explorers, in an effort to find a faster trade route to Asia, “bumped into” the Florida, pardon me “La Florida,” Spanish for “full of flowers,” peninsula back in 1513. Specifically, an escandallo (nautical leader) named Hernando DeSota eventually sailed his ship around La Florida Keys and dropped anchor just off shore from a beautiful barrier island on the west, or gulf coast of Florida. True to his adventurous spirit, DeSota ordered the ship’s shallow water botes, or longboats, be lowered into the sea and the dune-swept, slice of paradise before them be explored, and that’s when things got interesting …

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According to local legend, captain DeSota believed the native Timucan and Calusa Indians he encountered to be “unwelcoming and hostile” (can’t imagine why), and ordered an immediate retreat back to the ship. In their haste for an early departure, the Spanish sailors left several of their longboats behind on the beach… consequently, therefore, we are forever thankful to the Spanish Empire for bringing to the America’s not only wheat, horses and oranges, but also longboats! Secluded on a serene key, or barrier island, south of Tampa and just across the bridge from the big city charm and culture of Sarasota - the current, more philanthropic residents of Longboat Key now graciously welcome visitors and vacationers to their tranquil and relaxing oasis along the sea. Considered one of the quieter barrier islands on the west coast of Florida, Longboat is devoid of tourist and commercial attractions. Instead, there is a “small town” feel here among all the colorful natural landscapes, authentic old Florida boardwalks, parks, nature preserves, spectacular ocean sunsets, and a AAA Four Diamond beach front resort spanning 410 lush acres and five buildings - the Resort at Longboat Key Club welcomes its guests with luxurious amenities, exceptional “down home” service


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befitting the natural surroundings, and exotic cuisine, including fresh farm-to-table dining. Nearly completely surrounded by the azure waters of the Gulf, The Resort at Longboat Key boasts 226 bright and spacious guestrooms and suites, all of which reflect the relaxed tropical ambiance of the Florida gulf coast, complete with large private balconies with panoramic views of the beach, lagoon or golf course. Originally designed as part of a planned development that included private residences and an expanded country club, arriving at the Resort reminds many of walking back onto their small college campus, one where you are immediately welcomed back as part of the alumni family. The absence on the island of noisy traffic, mini malls, fast food outlets, neon signs, and everything else meddlesome in many beachfront communities has endowed The Longboat Key Club with its deserved reputation as an ideal getaway for couples, groups, and families. Built on land originally purchased in the 1920s by John Ringling of circus fame, the Resort resides on the very southern end of the key, offering visitors 11 miles of uninterrupted, sand white, dune-lined beachfront. The guest-only beach and Oceanside 43 | APRIL 2019


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Photos Courtesy of Longboat key club 45 | APRIL 2019

pool area may be considered base camp for a day of adventure on the water via the resort’s kayaks, sailboats, and other beach toys. Or, for many others, this breathtaking ocean front setting is best suited for reading a good book while reclining on a beach bed and listening to the sea birds and cadence of the waves, all while refreshing gulf breezes sooth their spirit. Also, the meticulously-designed and maintained children’s beach area would have made Mr. Ringling proud as it will bewilder and bedazzle the


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young ones. Or, sign the kids up in Longboat Key Club’s Camp Loggerhead (these are the turtles come ashore to nest), which is available for young adventurers, ages five to twelve. Meanwhile, the spa offers mother and daughter manicures and pedicures, and over at the fitness center they’ll arrange a guided sea kayaking tour through the mangroves with a naturalist, or how about a yoga retreat for the entire family on the beach. Only steps from the resort are 18 of the Key Club’s 45 holes of award-winning golf. Redesigned by

Ron Garl in 2014, fairways on The Links meander through acres of expansive natural areas and a multitude of serene waterways, all lined with over 5,000 towering coconut palms along with beautiful pink and white oleander shrubs. Recently regrassed with the superior, salt tolerant Platinum Paspalum, the excellent playing surfaces on The Links will assist in your efforts to negotiate around the abundant bird life, including swans, great blue herons, and those stunning pink spoonbills. And just a short five-minute shuttle ride north of the hotel are the White Egret, Red Hawk, and the fa-

mous Blue Heron nines at Harborside. Many of the holes here border Sarasota Bay and the Resort’s very own Longboat Key Club Moorings, the largest deep-water marina on Florida’s west coast, providing a quintessential gulf coast setting for a memorable golfing experience, Platinum Paspalum included. Tennis, which arrived via Bermuda, not Spain, has a very rich history on Longboat Key as this was home to the country’s first tennis resort complete with an academy led by the legendary instructor,

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Photos Courtesy of Longboat key club 49 | APRIL 2019

Catering to all types of vacation-going personalities, Longboat Key provides the ideal, diverse setting to experience resort living on island time. Nick Boliettier. Though Longboat’s iconic Colony Beach & Tennis Resort was razed recently, guests of The Resort at Longboat Key Club are invited to play at their Tennis Gardens, a USTA award-winning facility. A unique tennis experience with 20 hartru courts set amidst beautifully landscaped grounds along Sarasota Bay, the Tennis Gardens enabled The Resort At Longboat Key Club to be named the #7 top tennis resort in the world by Tennis Resort Online in its highly competitive annual listing. LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Anyone interested in promoting health, wellness, and beauty as a means of living a more vibrant life? The Spa at Longboat Key Club is an island-inspired sanctuary dedicated to soothing and nourishing your body. Additionally, the state-of-the-art 2,500-square-foot Mind & Motion Studio features floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the golf course. Along with an engaging roster of classes designed to enhance your mental and physical well-being, the Studio provides a tranquil meditation area. Or

as an alternative, just have the concierge sign you up for bird watching at the nearby Quick Point Nature preserve, that serene experience should calm you nerves as well. Exceptional culinary opportunities abound at the Key Club, with several restaurants and lounges scattered around the property, all of which highlight fresh ingredients, authentic Gulf Coast hospitality and are supplied by 25 local purveyors and the resort’s very own herb and vegetable garden.

Our favorite dining experience was at Portafino Restorante & Bar located in the Marina Village at Longboat Key Club Moorings. An inviting, traditional-style atmosphere with outdoor seating on the Mediterranean Terrace made us feel as though we were back in the Old Country of Northern Italy. The warm breeze that evening, spectacular harbor views, and extensive Italian wine menu pleasantly distracted us from deciding of fresh seafood, handmade pastas, or wood-fired brick oven pizza. After some live

music in the Portafino L’Anchora Lounge, we strolled over to The Tavern and Whiskey Bar, also in the Village, to sample some of the over 100 distinctive whiskeys and exceptional spirits. Catering to all types of vacation-going personalities, Longboat Key provides the ideal, diverse setting to experience resort living on island time. Those looking for a classical cultural experience need only cross back over the bridge into Sarasota to visit the Van Wezel Performing Arts Center, Ringling Museum, Sarasota Ballet at the Sarasota Opera House, and St. Armond’s Circle. Located just minutes away from the Resort at Longboat Key Club and easily accessed via the complimentary shuttle, St. Armond’s is a renowned continental shopping and dining area unique

in concept, history, and beauty. Removed from the bustle of the mainland by two bridges over magnificent Sarasota Bay, a day at “The Circle” manages to feel European, tropical, laid-back, luxurious, large, and quaint simultaneously. The vision of circus magnate John Ringling, this marketplace is a charming and graceful synthesis of the past and present. A proud member of the Opal Collection, an exclusive ensemble of premier luxury hotels and resorts, The Resort At Longboat Key Club shines with its own colorful and unique experiences. Recently named the #5 Florida Resort in the Condé Nast Travelers Readers’ Choice Awards, the Key Club is now receiving international recognition. “It is quite an honor to be recognized as one of the top resorts in Florida, given the extensive competition and the sheer number of resorts within the state. We take great pride in our service excellence and this is reflected by the recent rankings, which are determined by actual travelers and guests,”

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Photos Courtesy of Longboat key club 53 | APRIL 2019

Photos Courtesy of Longboat key club LINKS & LIBATIONS

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“It’s not the years in the life, it’s the life in the years.” extoled general manager, Jeff Mayers. “We’re actually the official teaching hotel for the College of Hospitality and Tourism at the University of South Florida,” Jeff enthusiastically stated. In their ongoing passionate pursuit to transform the family vacation, couples get-away, business meeting, or storybook wedding, into an exceptional memory that will not soon be forgotten, the good folks at The Longboat Key Club have even more significant enhancements planned for the summer of 2019. “The active, philanthropic character of our members and guests compels our team to keep planning forward and improving the connections between ourselves and our community,” Jeff concluded. The Key Club’s “Green Lodging” certification, recognizing them as one Florida’s most environmentally-conscious vacation destinations, and designation as the very first “Green Business Partner” resort in Sarasota County, is also testament to its sustainable actions and efforts to help preserve the fragile ecosystem that is so important to the future of Florida.


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Befitting of the Longboat Key community, up on the north side of the island is the beautifully serene, 32-acre Joan M. Durante Park. Stretching from Gulf of Mexico Drive down to the tranquil waters of Sarasota Bay, this benevolent gift of more than one mile of criss-crossing trails with boardwalks passing through salt marshes, upland hammock and mangrove wetlands, practically begs the visitor to be still and appreciate its wonderfully undeveloped state. Along the path, gazebos offer opportunity to rest and write inspirational thoughts in a logbook provided. One person wrote, “It’s not the years in the life, it’s the life in the years.” Thanks, in part, to the Spanish explorers during the European Age of Discovery, we have a very special place to visit on the serene, Gulf coast of La Florida that will help us all maintain a healthy and happy perspective: The Resort at Longboat Key Club. Book now and see for yourself:

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Photo courtesy Lake of the Ozarks CVB

Old Kinderhook Crown Jewel of Lake of the Ozarks by scott kendall


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Photo courtesy Lake of the Ozarks CVB


mack dab in the middle of Missouri lies the beautiful Lake of the Ozarks. Long a playground for the Midwest since it was formed in 1931 with the construction of Bagnell Dam, the area has become popular with visitors from all across the US and elsewhere. With over 1,100 miles of shoreline – more than the entire coastline of California – Lake of the Ozarks offers tons of fun for the entire family. Voted by readers of USA Today as “The Best Recreational Lake in the Nation,” the area boasts over a dozen golf courses, quality shopping and dining, wineries, state parks, show caves, and two beautiful state parks. And that’s in addition to the numerous lake activities – boating, fishing, swimming, and hiking the many miles of trails.

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Old Kinderhook Golf Resort Many golfers refer to the Old Kinderhook course as the crown jewel of Missouri golf. At the southern tip of Lake of the Ozarks near Camdenton, Old Kinderhook Golf Course is one of the top golf destinations in central Missouri. This Tom Weiskopf designed beauty is a 6,726-yard par 71 with well-maintained zoysia tees and fairways and manicured large bent grass greens. The variety and changes in elevation and topography add another dimension to one of the finest courses in the United States. With an undulating terrain full of waterfalls, trees, and water features, Old Kinderhook is on many golfers’ bucket list. Looking up the fairway of the signature 18th hole, golfers are treated to what may be the most dramatic and scenic hole on the course. With large trees and a lake to the left, and a deep bunker on the right, the hole is challenging but friendly. Straight ahead is a view of the beautiful 84 room Old Kinderhook Lodge as you approach the green, which is surrounded by water and bunkers on all sides. A fitting end to a great round of golf. The



Photos by scott kendall

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Room Every great golf resort needs a great restaurant. The Trophy Room complements the world class golf course with exceptional dishes served at lunch and dinner. The outstanding food is served in the classy dining room or on the back patio with beautiful views of the course and surrounding landscape. You can even watch happy guests playing sand volleyball in warm weather or skating on the only outdoor ice rink in the area during the winter. We had a lovely dinner in the Trophy Room. Seated beside the large window with a wonderful view of the outdoor fireplace and the 18th hole, we enjoyed the nicely prepared Salmon with Lump Crab and a Center Cut Fillet - both were excellent. The Trophy Room also features a nice wine list and a good selection of craft beers. Come on Friday or Saturday nights to enjoy the live music in the bar. In addition to the Trophy Room, The Hearth, located in the Lodge, is a great place to grab coffee or a quick breakfast. The Hook, conveniently located in the Pro Shop, is under renovation but will be re-opening in the Spring of 2019. The Hook will offer quick and simple eats like burgers, sandwiches, snacks and cold drinks in a warm, friendly environment.

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Photo courtesy Lake of the Ozarks CVB 63 | APRIL 2019

Seven Springs Winery When we think of wine, Missouri is not the first state that comes to mind. However, back in the early 1900s, Missouri was actually one of the top wine producing states in the nation. With Prohibition, Missouri wine production was put on pause for many years. Then, starting in the 1960s and 70s, the wine industry in the Show Me state began a renaissance. One of the more popular wineries in Lake of the Ozarks is Seven Springs Winery and Vineyard, founded in 2008 by Mike Bleile. Just a short ten-minute drive from Camdenton and Osage Beach, Seven Springs consists of 160 acres of scenic rolling terrain. It is especially notable for the covered porch and patio area in the back of the winery, with plenty of seating and fantastic views of the beautiful landscapes. One visit and you can see why Seven Springs is a popular venue for weddings, family reunions, and other celebrations. The accommodating staff even invite you to explore some of the two miles of trails that wind through the property. Seven Springs also hosts special events like Wine in the Vines, a fun 1K and 5K walk/run, and the annual Silver

Photo by scott kendall LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Cup Chef’s Competition. Live music (and sometimes fireworks!) adds to the festive atmosphere on many nights. Seven Springs specializes in Missouri wines, but also offers sangrias and a few select craft beers. Tastings are reasonably priced. Visitors can taste any three wines for free, any six for $8, and all thirteen for $15. My favorites included a nice crisp Traminette, a light straw color with green hues and a fruity flavor. Among the other popular sweet wines are the Sparkling Moscato, Seven’s Red Heaven, and The Left Side, a limited 2001 Vintage Norton blended with a 2008 fortified Norton. I would say that Mike Bleile’s goal of simply making the best wines Missouri has to offer is right on track. Having just celebrated their 10th anniversary, Seven Springs is the go to winery in Lake of the Ozarks. Mindy, our server, was very friendly and informative, as we tried six of the wines on the tasting menu. Under Mindy’s tutelage, my wife and I enjoyed comparing the aerated and nonaerated versions of several wines, and were amazed at the difference it made with some of the wines. The capable kitchen creates several options for

Photo courtesy Lake of the Ozarks CVB some tasty bites to enjoy with your wine or beer. Choose from a light menu of soups, sandwiches, wraps, burgers, cheese trays, and breads. I especially enjoyed the award winning Spicy Shrimp & Crab Bisque, a perfect blend of wild bay shrimp, lump crab, spices, and just the right amount of cayenne pepper. The Cranberry and Curried Chicken Wrap was also outstanding. Ha Ha Tonka State Park Ha Ha Tonka (laughing waters) State Park, with the stone ruins of a castle, a natural bridge, and scenic trails and views of the Niangua arms of Lake of the Ozarks, lies just five minutes south of Old Kinderhook. Built by Robert Snyder, a wealthy Kansas City businessman in 1920, the “castle” was destroyed by fire in 1942, leaving only the stone skeleton of the structure. The castle sits high atop a sheer bluff overlooking the river. Visitors can take a walk along the many trails at the park, including winding trails featuring a natural bridge, sinkholes, caves, and other fasci-

nating geologic features. No wonder Condé Nast recently named Ha Ha Tonka State Park “the most beautiful place in Missouri.” Margaritaville is Coming Lake of the Ozarks continues to grow and create new and exciting experiences for visitors to Mid-Missouri. In May, the already excellent TanTar-A resort is transforming into the always funthemed resort of Margaritaville at Tan-Tar-A, complete with the Land Shark Bar & Grill Restaurant and the Tiki Hut Pool Bar on the lake. With its central location and abundant recreational activities, Lake of the Ozarks is a wonderful travel destination. Come for a round of golf at Old Kinderhook or one of the dozen other great golf courses on the trail. Go boating and fishing on the lake, and enjoy the fabulous geology and scenery of Lake of the Ozarks. You are certain to remember your time at the “fun lake,” Lake of the Ozarks.

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PhotoS courtesy of desert mountain LINKS & LIBATIONS

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at desert mountain in Scottsdale By Tim Cotroneo


nless it’s attached to the words “under par,” seven is the last number you want emblazoned on your golf scorecard. That’s unless you are Desert Mountain’s Bill Brownlee or Wendell Pickett, and this number not only places you in the company of Jack Nicklaus, it’s also linked to the future of golf. Over the past decade, golf’s traditions, participants, and bottom line have all taken a step back. When the Desert Mountain Golf Community in Scottsdale, AZ, decided to develop the last remaining parcel on its 8,000 scenic acres in the Sonoran Desert, the members decided to split from the past and go bold. To understand how a big of a leap the new Seven Golf Course is, you must grasp Desert Mountain’s proud legacy leading to Seven’s opening in April 2019. Desert Mountain’s first six 18-hole courses were all designed by Jack Nicklaus. What would the aptly named Seven Golf Course do for an encore? Seven and 54: The Future of Golf Brownlee and Pickett decided to break from golf’s 18-hole norm and design a Par 54 golf course. If you do the math, that means each hole on the new Seven is a Par 3. The futuristic Brownlee and Pickett had already established a track record with this concept in Wickenburg, AZ, and they decided that taking par 54 golf to the next level at Seven was just what the Desert Mountain members were looking for.

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“You hear repeatedly that investing four to six hours in 18 holes of golf is too long. There are whispers and even shouts that golf courses are too hard. At Desert Mountain we are proud to feature six award-winning golf courses that are as beautiful as they are challenging. Seven is spectacular from an aesthetic standpoint, but it’s also a golf experience that’s just over 3,100-yards. Golfers choose from three tee boxes, and your total time investment should be three hours or less,” Brownlee said. The wild card infused into Seven is fun. The extracurriculars golfers can anticipate before, during, and after their round is nothing short of groundbreaking. “Our 9,000-square-foot clubhouse is going to be a new epicenter for social activity here at Desert Mountain. Our restaurant will provide gastropub offerings and craft beers. Guests on our patio will enjoy an elevated view of the Sonoran mountains, epic sunsets, and golfers putting out on 18. We’ll also have music, bocce ball courts, fire pits, and putting contests on our massive lighted practice green,” Brownlee said. Golf’s New Look in the Desert Since 1986, golf has been the main drawing card for residents at the luxurious Desert Mountain. As members themselves, Brownlee and Pickett knew LINKS & LIBATIONS

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“The Desert Mountain team tossed at least 65 names in the air before choosing


that a golf course that didn’t adhere to the championship quality standards set by Nicklaus wouldn’t wash. These quality legacies were instilled in the Seven construction team as they moved dirt, carved sand traps, installed a new Rainbird irrigation system, and planted a special turf element to the whole agronomy mix. “We feature bent grass from the tee boxes to the greens,” Brownlee said. The idea was to create a striking tee to green feel that appears to be one continuous surface. Ultimately our goal was to welcome the newcomer, re-introduce golf to someone 69 | APRIL 2019

who may have turned away from the game, and provide a test for the lowest handicapper. Seven the Game Changer The story behind the name isn’t as logical as you’d think. The Desert Mountain team tossed at least 65 names in the air before choosing Seven. “When Seven was first discussed, there were a lot of blank stares. After several more meetings, we ultimately came back to a name that is not only easy to remember, it just made sense when you consider there were six courses that came before this one. Having seven courses in our master planned community is a gamer changer,” Brownlee said. Adding Seven to Jack’s Six The last design task on Seven was to stretch two of the Par 3’s to at least 250 yards and be over 3,000-yards total. These changes were made to conform with USGA rules and to register a course handicap rating. Brownlee reminds that a 270-yard Par 3 from the tips can be modified by playing from

two shorter tee boxes. Whew! Brownlee was asked what it was like to follow six Jack Nicklaus signature courses with a design of his own at Desert Mountain. “No one can top Jack. He’s a legend. Wendell and I are thrilled to build Seven on the same 8,000-acres as Jack’s wonderful courses. The opening of Seven means one more choice for golfers who come to experience Desert Mountain,” Brownlee said. Is the golf world ready for a Par 54? Brownlee, Pickett, and the golf mecca that is Desert Mountain can’t wait to find out. Their betting that golfers will want to make Seven part of their future and look at the number as one they’ll love seeing emblazoned on their scorecard. Book a tee time now:

“The opening of Seven means one more choice for golfers who come to experience

Desert Mountain”


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Historic Groot C o n s ta n t i a E s tat e By Elsa Dixon


ouldn’t you like to taste the wine that Jane Austen mentions as a cure for a broken heart in Sense and Sensibility, Charles Dickens describes as a panacea in The Mystery of Edwin Drood and Charles Baudelaire equates his lover’s lips to in Les Fleurs du Mal? You are in good company when you sip ‘Grand Constance’, South Africa’s oldest wine, stocked in the cellars of Frederick the Great of Prussia and Louis Phillipe of France. And what’s more, Napoleon Bonaparte was granted permission to drink this elixir while in exile on the island of St Helena. Groot Constantia, the oldest wine estate in South Africa, is tucked away in the lush Constantia Valley in the heart of Cape Town. Its history dates back to 1685 when Simon van der Stel, Governor of the Cape, established the farm. Throughout the centuries, it has maintained a high standard, living up to the Latin meaning: ‘’constancy’. Visitors Route, a self-guided tour To fully experience the history and heritage of Groot Constantia, follow the circular self-guided Visitors Route and download the two free LINKS & LIBATIONS

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PhotoS BY elsa dixon 73 | APRIL 2019

audio walking tours. Walking through the centuries-old oak trees, one can almost hear the wheels of the carriages that once rolled along here. Step a little off the path and look over the long white wall towards the False Bay coast and take in the sight of acres of vineyards. Take a moment to admire the original Cape Dutch Manor House with its whitewashed walls and impressive gables in the late Dutch Renaissance style. Stepping in through its doors, the collection of period furniture brings the house to life. Continue to the famed Cloete Cellar, named for Hendrik Cloete who bought the estate in 1799, and in whose family the estate remained for five generations. There is an exciting wine and cultural museum housing well-preserved relics such as the wine implements used by Napoleon when he was in exile, as well as storage and drinking vessels dating back to antiquity. Proceed to the modern-day production cellar. There are three wine-tasting venues, as well as a chocolate and wine pairing tasting from which you can choose. Groot Constantia is owned by a trust with eight directors and is still a working farm. The Manor and Cloete Cellar have been jointly declared a National Monument and is managed by


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Iziko Museums of South Africa. Modern-day Production Cellar Tour Gur Milandou welcomes you for a tour of the modern-day production cellar with its lively African Art wall murals. Groot Constantia is a farm of roughly 400 acres, of which about 222 are under vines. The area has an excellent annual rainfall averaging 39 inches, so no irrigation is needed. There are nine different soil types on the property, each suited to a particular type of grape. The soil is fertile, and has excellent water retention, allowing the roots to penetrate deeply. Groot Constantia practices eco-friendly farming.

pest control. During autumn, as the harvest ends, seed for winter ground cover is sown. During winter, each vine is pruned, the cover crop is killed, plowed back into the soil, and new vines are planted by hand.

Ladybugs are imported from Durban to combat the spread of disease-carrying vine mealie bugs, while dotted around the vines, ‘yellow houses’ act as insect traps emitting pheromones to attract the bugs. The grape skins, pips, stalks and alien plants removed from the soil are turned into organic fertilizers. The farm is worked in a labor-intensive way, using volunteers, seasonal workers and about forty families who live on the farm. During the summer months, long shoots are tipped, topped, and positioned, while young vines are trellised and grapes are harvested. Attention is given to disease and

The Production Cellar is an impressive structure with a big bridge-platform running down the center. Gur explains the winemaking process as you walk along. The sedimentation tanks are wrapped in blankets to be brought to a temperature of -4°C for white wines. A sticky milk-like clay solution called bientonite is used to purify the content, allowing sludge to form at the bottom of the tank. The sediment becomes settled during the 1-2 month process and is thrown away. Next, the grapes are squeezed into mush in the pressing machines; the juice is drained from the container through a pipe into a tank, while the leaves and stalks are thrown away. Winding your way to the ground level, you will marvel at the rows of used oak barrels from France with fermenting grapes. Near the entrance is a huge cask on display – in the old days, a worker used to be ordered into the barrel to turn the grapes, some workers perishing in the process. Chocolate and Wine Pairing Now you reach the highlight of the tour: the choc75 | APRIL 2019


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olate and wine pairing tasting. Five award-winning wines are presented, accompanied by carefully selected complementary chocolates. Five thin sticks of chocolate are neatly arranged next to a row of glasses and an ice bucket on a long, yellow stinkwood table. The chocolates are handcrafted in the small town of Knysna on the Garden Route. There is an air of expectancy as the first bottle, Groot Constantia Sauvignon Blanc is presented, and Gur demonstrates swirling the wine around before taking a sip. The wine leaves a slightly acrid taste in the mouth. Bite a small piece of the creamy white chocolate and roll it on the tip of the tongue. Voila! A pleasant sensation fills the mouth, and the acidity of the wine is gone, leaving an enjoyable taste of summer fruit. The second bottle, the dark fruity Groot Constantia Pinotage, is complemented by a blackberry milk chocolate. The aromatic Secret Spices and Vanilla Chocolate echo the spices and pepper of the next wine, a 2016 Groot Constantia Shiraz. Gur explains that, “the goal of the wine pairing is for the chocolate and wine to complement each other and bring out the flavors in each.� The bitterness of the dark berry Morello Cherry Tobacco chocolate is balanced by the strong flavor of the fourth wine, a 2015 Groot Constantia Governors Reserve. The silky smooth dark Cherry Blossom Chocolate rounds off the 2016 Constantia Rood in the final tasting. The gift of a Spiegelau crystal glass concludes the wine-tasting experience.


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Jonkershuis Restaurant The journey back in time is not complete without savoring the traditional dishes of the old Cape. Opt for Jonkershuis, used as slave quarters in earlier years where you sit in the cool enclosed courtyard with its trellised vines. The restaurant presents firm favorites still served in South African homes. Try the tasting platter of Cape Malay bobotie with its fruity, mild curry flavor, sultana and almond turmeric rice, Karoo lamb curry, chicken breast curry, and angry beef samosas. Also taste hot smoked snoek (a South African fish) pate and kudu (venison) carpaccio. Dessert favorites were traditional malva

pudding, cinnamon ‘melktert’, and ‘koeksisters.’ Despite a large number of tables, there is a feeling of intimacy as the waiting staff encourages interaction amongst patrons. The pleasant atmosphere is enhanced by the clinking of glasses and of course, the fine Groot Constantia wines. A perfect ending to a lovely day of culture, cuisine, chocolate, and wine. Make it your next Destination!

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London Contemporary by Mary Charlebois


he shadowy opening at the base of the building bears a bright-orange sign, “WELCOME TO TATE MODERN.� Under the sign, a wide entrance slips down and out of sight. Descending into the concrete and steel maw of Tate Modern, you are reduced to pocket-size. The building is a massive sculpture filled with art.

PhotoS by mary charlebois 81 | APRIL 2019

London is one of the world’s celebrated art centers. The visual and performing arts are born and thrive in the city. For centuries, every style, from classic to contemporary, has enjoyed exhibition in public and private. Contemporary art lovers enjoy a dynamic scene in galleries, museums, parks, gardens, and neighborhoods.

signed to rouse your senses.

Where to start your London Contemporary tour Cumberland Place in the Marble Arch/Marylebone District is quiet. The residential street is lined with elegant Georgian Townhouses. Located in the Center of London, close to popular attractions, surrounded by calm, it’s the best home base for a weekend London Contemporary tour.

Take a tour of the public areas. As you enter The Arch, a lady with a saucy pose stands at the end of the entrance hall. Vincent Poole’s collage New Shoes sports multi-colored shoebox labels in the silhouette.

A 5-star, boutique hotel, The Arch London, stands in this posh neighborhood. Small and personal, The Arch is one of the finest hotels in the city. The staff is outstanding. Guest comfort is job one. Every aspect of this lovely lodging has been de-


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Art at The Arch The Arch is the starting point for London Contemporary. A curated collection of art and décor from emerging British artists grace guests’ rooms and public spaces.

The entire Alphatecture series by Peter Defty is an intriguing visual puzzle lining a corridor. The shape of many hotel spaces is sculptural. Lighting, windows, and sound are creative components setting different moods. Art at the Arch is more than pieces hanging on the wall. It is a living gallery of contemporary design and classic ambiance. The con-

cierge will lead you in a private tour of the hotel’s treasures, or you may guide yourself. Contemporary Food and Libations at the Arch Award-winning, contemporary dining and craft cocktails in Hunter 486 are part of the Arch experience. Enjoy bubbles in the Champagne Lounge, after dinner cocktails in the Martini Library, or take a seat at the American style bar for a chat with the barman about his works of art for you to consume. A best of British inspired menu developed by Head Chef, Gary Durrant, is based on modern British classics like fish & chips. Breakfast, afternoon tea, and dinner are served. Seasonal and holiday menus are filled with unique dishes. The ingredients and preparation are the highest quality. Service and surroundings are luxurious without being stuffy. Four places to soak up London Contemporary Tate Modern – Contemporary Art Gallery Located on the Thames, Tate Modern is the 6th most attended museum in the world. It is Britain’s national gallery of international modern art and

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part of the Tate Group. Tate exhibits the national collection of British art from 1500 to the present day. The collection has recently expanded its holdings of modern and contemporary artworks from Africa, Asia Pacific, Eastern Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and South Asia. Views of the London skyline are the best in the city. Level 9 Restaurant is Tate Modern’s dining location in a contemporary, architectural space. The food is modern European with a strong emphasis on British ingredients. Learn more at Tate Modern.

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East End Street Art – Murals London has some of the best street art on the planet. The East End is home to London Contemporary works on buildings, walls, fences, and signs. One of the best ways to tour the area’s busy streets is with an East End of London Food Tour. You’ll devour East End food, history, and street art on one of the best-designed cultural tours you will experience. Learn more at Eating Europe, East End Food Tour. The Line – Contemporary art walk The Line is London’s first dedicated modern and contemporary art walk. The project opened to the public in May 2015. The route runs between Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and O2 Arena, following waterways and the line of the Meridian. For more information visit The Line. Cork Street Galleries – Buzzy, artsy, neighborhood A short street packed with art galleries, Cork Street is to the commercial art world what Bond Street is to jewelry. Mayor Gallery was the first gallery to open on Cork Street in 1925 selling avant-garde


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works by artists like Paul Klee. After almost a century of fostering talents such as Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud, Cork Street’s 22 commercial galleries are still going strong. For more information visit Cork Street Galleries. These are just a few of Contemporary London’s treasure trove of talent, seeing them all would be a life’s work. The concierge at Arch London can arrange transportation, private tours, showings, and suggest additional destinations. Spend a weekend exploring the newest of art trends in one of the world’s oldest cities, London. Links

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Links & Libations April 2019  

In this months issue of Links & Libations: Check out the relaxing spa and fun-filled activities for the whole family at the Resort at Longbo...

Links & Libations April 2019  

In this months issue of Links & Libations: Check out the relaxing spa and fun-filled activities for the whole family at the Resort at Longbo...