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May 2018 Issue | Vol. 1 Iss. 2

Golf. Craft Beer. Craft Wine. Craft Spirits. Travel Destinations.

“A Luxury Travel Magazine , Celebrating Life .”

May 2018 Issue | Vol. 1 Iss. 2

Contents Featured Articles 30 24

Health, History, and Old World Charm Revisits Broadway Horses - A Look at Saratoga & the Named for John Morrissey, the boxer was a frequent Re-imagined visitor of the Adelphi Adelphi Hotel.

Built in 1877, the iconic Adelphi Hotel has been reimagined and renovated By Theresa St. John

Today, the lounge offers a casual, laid-back vibe with inventive cocktails By Theresa St. John

Playing The Links 34 60

Champions Retreat…Nines, Wines, and Memorable Times


Golf’s Year of the Jack in Panama

Barefoot Elegance at the Edgewater Beach Hotel - Naples, Florida

Sips & Travel 12

Slowboat Brewing Company Hibiscus and Rose Hips in a Brew of Perfection

18 Prince Edward Country Taste Trail: Karlo Estates Winery 40 The Past, Present, and Future Meet in St. Augustine, Florida 48 Beer Buzz in the Bushveld 54

Beach Bar Dreams lead to Akademia Brewing Company, Athens, Georgia


Adobe Guadalupe: Mexican Winery Touched by Angels Cover


Adobe Guadalupe Inn


Once Dormant El Segundo Now A Hip Place To Hang Out In L.A.

Phyllis Spielman Theresa St. John John Mooshie Tim Cotroneo LINKS & LIBATIONS

Tim Bona Gwyn Goodrow Lori Sweet Betsi Hill | 4

Subscribe Here For free!


Jim Hill Elsa Dixon Judy Garrison Len Garrison


Noreen Kompanik Kevin Wilkerson

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Meet Phyllis Spielman “In Fine Fashion with Phyllis Spielman,” a New Fashion Product Unboxing Show coming in July.


eet Phyllis Spielman of “In Fine Fashion with Phyllis Spielman,” a New Fashion Product Unboxing Show coming in July.

Phyllis grew up in Devine, Texas, a small town outside of San Antonio. Her passion for travel, meeting new people and discovering new cultures was fueled at an early age. As a youngster she would travel across the United States, stopping and exploring and meeting new people. Today, Phyllis is a world-renowned actress, with her latest hit co-starring in the movie “Stasis” and appearing in a cameo as Claire the Reporter in the opening scene of “Day of the Dead Bloodline” both currently available on Netflix world-wide. This Army veteran has traveled to twelve countries, speaks three languages and has plans to study Hebrew, Russian and Japanese in the next couple of years. How did you fall in love with different cultures and languages? I joined the International Club at Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island. I’ve always been curious LINKS & LIBATIONS

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about different cultures, and the International Club sparked my curiosity to learn more about different cultures across the world. The club would have monthly meetings that included tasting ethnic foods and celebrating holidays from around the globe.

tions when I was in high school. I used to watch movies with my family and think to myself “one day I’m going to be on the big screen.” While I was in Colorado Springs working for a defense contractor after my Army stint, I began looking up auditions online.

Serving as the club’s Public Relations Officer, I was responsible for increasing the cultural awareness and fostering inter-cultural friendships not only in the university but the community at large.

I came across a casting call for “Sirens.” As I read the character descriptions, I knew I could portray the leading character Sarah; I just needed the opportunity to audition. I asked my daughter to come with me to the casting call. This was a cold audition, and I was asked to improv a scenario. The scene was telling your 8-year old daughter that her father had died. Thinking about the situation for a moment, I prepared myself and then launched into my audition. As I was leaving, the producer came out to chat with me for a moment. Receiving a callback, I was asked to read a very intense scene with a fellow actor. On my birthday, I received a call from the director offering me the role. And so, my acting career began.

One of my favorite memories from my days in the International Club was meeting my friend Zubin Nazir from India. Zubin gave me a bracelet made out of thread. The bracelet, known as “Rakhi,” means “knot of protection” and is exchanged as a sign of friendship in Indian culture. To this day, Zubin and I have retained our friendship, born of meeting through the International Club. Was it your love of discovering different cultures that led you to join the Army? “I mean what good is an international business degree if I didn’t have first-hand experience in the international territories.” This is what I told the recruiter when I walked in and sat down to discuss my options in the United States Army. Heading to Fort Jackson, South Carolina for my basic training, and then to Fort Lee, Virginia for my specialty training. Following Fort Lee, my next assignment was Friedberg, Germany to serve with the 1st Armored Division B CO 501st FSB. Friedberg is where Elvis was stationed. I loved my time in the military, as it stimulated my mind and challenged me daily. I enjoyed my time serving our great country in the Army. The friendships formed, the camaraderie that I developed with my fellow soldiers and the life experience I gained are things that I still cherish. I am still in contact with soldiers and officers that I served with. Some are fans and support my acting career. I am proud to be a part of the Armed Forces, both in an active duty role and as a veteran. From Army veteran to actress - tell us a little about that. I began acting in musicals and theatrical produc-

works for me.

Since that role in “Sirens,” I have had numerous acting jobs. “It’s interesting when I read a script and can imagine myself in that role. If I can’t imagine myself in the role, then I pass on it.” My way of choosing which roles to take may be unorthodox, but it

My favorite role to date has been Sarah in “Sirens.” I can relate to her struggle of being a single mother. Her character evolves emotionally and physically throughout the movie, and the skills I had to learn to play her role were intriguing. Some of the skills I had to learn were sign language, teaching and performing ballet, and walking in stilettos. Make sure you check out Phyllis in both Stasis and Sirens as well as be on the look out for her in the film festival circuit with the award winning film “Come to Me Sister Mary”. She has more upcoming roles as well so stay in the loop by following her fan page on Facebook . Don’t miss the first episode of “In Fine Fashion with Phyllis Spielman” in Links & Libations July issue and follow “In Fine Fashion’s” Facebook page.

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Slow Brew Comp

Hibiscus and R Brew of P By Gwyn


casual afternoon walk with my husband in the trendy downtown district of Laurel, Mississippi changed my mind about beer and opened my palate to the flavors of craft beer. We discovered Slowboat Brewery Company inside a renovated car repair service center known locally as the “old radio station” building. Kenny and Carrie Mann are the owners of Slowboat Brewing Com-pany and have joined the other small business owners in revitalizing their hometown’s small business presence.

Slowboat Brewing Company History

Kenny and Carrie started with home brewing and developed their style and flavor palates. In 2016, the Mann’s transformed an abandoned building into a vibrant entertainment location in the heart of LINKS & LIBATIONS

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downtown Laurel, Mississippi, doing what they love. What they love is brewing beer, music, and people. The venue is perfect. This southern Mississippi city of about 18,000 residents is a rising tourist destination due to the popularity of the Free State of Jones movie (2016) and HGTV’s Home Town renovation series starring local residents Ben and Erin Napier. As tourism increases, Slowboat Brewery is right on track with evening entertainment. I sat with Carrie Mann, at a wrought iron patio table, just outside old service garage entry and learned about the history and vision of this remarkable venue. The building was renovated and restored, keeping original design elements in play with

w b o at wing pany

Rose Hips in a Perfection Goodrow

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pipes and brickwork. The spindle adapter image on the logo reflects the musical roots of this location as WAML radio station at 1340 on the AM dial.

About the Brews

When my husband and I entered the place where the magic happens, Kenny was at work behind the bar and offered us beer. The Gimme Shelter beer is one of the specialty drinks in the 45 RPM Series. The crisp, refreshing liquid tickled my taste buds. Was this really beer? Yes! I had to know more. Gimme Shelter is a delightful custom brew, made with hibiscus and rose hip flavoring, and a cocktail-like rosy pink burst of color. This specialty drink is a 3.8% alcohol brew, and Slowboat Brewery showed their generosity by offering all proceeds from taproom sales to the Southern Cross Animal Rescue (SCAR). A few weeks earlier, the SCAR team was at the brewery with animals available for adoption. As their Facebook page states, “Pets and children are always welcome here if they are well behaved.� While Gimme Shelter is on tap for a limited time, the Into the Mystic beer is a similar brew in the 331/3 RPM Series at 4.9% alcohol content and LINKS & LIBATIONS

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on picnic style tables inside the garage. There is ample space, and the multitude of tables of chairs allows visitors to make themselves right at home among family and friends. It’s a community, and everyone is welcome. Near the large picnic tables, stacks of no-tech games bring back memories and offer a way to connect in this comfortable atmosphere. A giant set of wooden blocks tests the Jenga™ building skills

the same gentle tone of the hibiscus flavors, brewed to tease the senses with crisp and light flavors. Non-alcoholic beverages are also available, along with sodas and water.

Gaming, Old School

In the afternoon, visitors and the local regulars sip the beer while playing tech-free board games

and is fun for every age.

Got Music?

At night, folk, bluegrass, jazz and other stage musicians draw crowds for evening entertainment. The stage is simple, calm and understated. It’s a rug on the concrete floor. The “bands on the rug” jokes are appropriate, and all in good fun. Local folk, bluegrass, and indie musicians were the first to take the stage on the rug. Now, the Manns reach out to a wider variety of musicians and through social media and word of mouth, have bands reaching out to them, wanting to play the vibrant and fun venue. Slowboat Brewing Company is on the leading edge of Mississippi’s rapidly growing craft beer industry, and locals are responding with great enthusiasm to their custom brew recipes. In fact, when I mentioned my trip to a craft beer en15 |

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thusiast in my hometown, the cucumber beer immediately became our topic of conversation. Yes, it’s right there on the menu – Cucumberly Numb. It’s time to plan a return visit to Laurel, Mississippi and the Slowboat Brewing Company.

IF YOU GO: Slowboat Brewing Company 318 W 5th St Laurel, Mississippi 39440 601-433-2723 Mon - Wed: 3pm – 6pm (Take-out only) Thurs - Fri: 3pm – 10pm Saturday: 3pm – 12pm WWW.SLOWBOATBREWco.COM


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Wine Bar

Retail Store

Wine Sampling Saturday and Sunday 1-4 pm

Lounge and Patio

Wines by the Glass Wine Flights Bottles of wine to enjoy in our lounge

Beer Garden Craft Beer New Glarus

Wines Beer Craft Spirits Gift Items

Comfortable seating for relaxing Lounge – 2 fireplaces Patio – weather permitting


Check our website for a full calendar of events Delivery Service Available

617 W. Main Street • Lake Geneva, WI 53147 (half block east of Starbucks)


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Prince Edward Country Taste Trail

Karlo Estates Winery By Lori Sweet

“Making wine is like playing cards. You have to deal with the hand the vintage presents.” - Sherry Karlo


hen the late Richard Karlo and his wife Sherry, started out on this adventure, little did they know that Sherry would find herself running the winery they created, without Richard. Karlo Estates Winery in Wellington, Ontario, Canada, has been dealt several different hands of cards over the last few years, and like the song “The Gambler,” by Kenny Rogers, Sherry is holding her cards, or in this case, Karlo Estates Winery.

In The Beginning

It was a circuitous route to get to where it is today, but Karlo Estates has become one of the premier wineries in the region. When they purchased the Prince Edward County property in 2005 from the grandson of the original family, they did so because “Richard fell in love with the soil and bucolic nature of the county,” says Sherry. They made quite a team. Richard made the wines, while Sherry, with a background in advertising, design, and art, packaged and sold them. The property comprises close to 100 acres with rich, south facing slopes. Richard was very interested in having a water feature on the property. He got his wish. There is a quiet running stream alongside picnic tables, and unofficial trails linking with the Millennium Trail for hikers, cyclists and even those on horseback. LINKS & LIBATIONS

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In 2007, a group of international volunteers in conjunction with the Dry Stone Wall Association of Canada, built the largest dry stone bridge in North America, over that stream. Sherry explains that the keystone on the bridge not only has the logo of the winery, but it is a “symbol of us all working together to hold it together and make it as strong as it can be.”


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The Legacy

In November of 2014, after a brief illness, Richard passed away. With passion in her voice, Sherry says she is “bound and determined to see his dream through and execute what we had in mind.” That is exactly what she is doing! Winemakers from around the county showed up

that first year to help Sherry get through that vintage. Knowing she needed someone on a permanent basis, she reached out to Derek Barnett, a well-known winemaker, and friend of Richard’s. Both Derek and Richard had made names for themselves in the Canadian wine industry. Sherry describes both as “winemakers of the palate, not the numbers. They use their palate to determine the taste, not the chemistry.” Derek came on board in 2015. Understandably, there was some turmoil when Richard passed away, and it took a while to get their feet back under them, but Karlo Estates is back to producing award-winning wines.

The Wines & Vegan Certification

When developing their wines, they focus on estate-grown fruit, other fruit from the County, and some grapes from Niagara for varietals they produce; however, these are not grown locally. Initial varietals planted were Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and a first for an Ontario winemaker, Frontenac, a hybrid variety well suited for frigid regions.

Amongst a list of award-winning wines is the VanAlstine White. It is a fortified, port-like wine that won Gold in an international competition, usually won by the Portuguese, where port originated. Karlo Estates not only produces award-winning wines, but the wines are also the world’s first Vegan Certified Wines. This certification is based on the belief in the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle, on health and environmental welfare. Everything that comes in contact with the wine is from the earth. The proof is in the glass, and in the number of people who are now discovering their wines

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Each tasting includes a 1oz pour of wine and a bite or two of food to enhance the experience. In the winter, enjoy some wine in the Centre Barrel Room, warmed by the fireplace and good music. Just like the keystone in the dry stone bridge, Sherry and her team are doing everything they can to continue to build on the solid foundation that she and Richard started together.

If You Go: and who are making return visits.


Another aspect of the property that initially caught Richard and Sherry’s eye was the Hip Barn, built in 1805. Now the central piece of the property, it has been lovingly restored over time. The natural, homey, authentic feel of the barn adds to the tasting experience. You can enjoy tastings in several spots in the barn and on the property. You can sip on the back patio, the lawn couch area, the central tasting area or take a glass of wine down to the bridge.

Samples are $1 to $3 depending on the wine you choose. Tastings are complimentary with the purchase of two or more bottles per person. Wine by the glass is available. For something a little more substantial, they also serve tasting plates. If you’d like to bring your picnic basket, they provide tables down by the dry stone bridge, a bit south of the vineyards. For hours of operation and driving directions, go to

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aratoga Springs was already well-known in the 1800’s. The Spa City lured people in from all over the country. Visitors came to enjoy the fresh air, beautiful scenery, and benefits of mineral water, which many swore brought healing from various maladies of the day. The Magical Properties of Mineral Water For most of the 19th and much of the 20th century, Saratoga was known as the “Queen of Spas.” Naturally carbonated springs had been discovered throughout the area, making the land sacred to the Mohawk and other Native Americans.

Photos Courtesy of The Adelphi Hotel

Eventually, even world-renown physicians recommended, “taking the water” to patients suffering from kidney complaints, diabetes, heartburn, rheumatoid arthritis, malaria, and other, lesser-known ailments. Using mineral water for both drinking and bathing was a European tradition for the health-conscious. When Saratoga’s railroad arrived in 1831, bathhouses were already under construction. Guests were often seen sauntering out of boarding houses and elegant hotels to partake in the daily ritual.

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Luxurious Hotels Spoiled Visitors in The Spa City The demand for more hotels soared. In fact, The Grand Union Hotel, built in 1802, quickly grew from a boarding house into the world’s largest hotel, boasting 824 rooms. One block down, still on Broadway, The United States Hotel followed suit. During the 1940’s it offered 786 guestrooms and suites for people visiting the downtown area. Built in 1877, The Adelphi Hotel stood between the two massive establishments. It was much smaller


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in stature, with a mere 150 rooms. Modern conveniences, including elevators, electrical wiring, indoor plumbing, central heating and even telephones, drew attention to the hotel. Though small in stature, these modern conveniences allowed the Adelphi to stand head and shoulders above the Grand Union Hotel and the United States Hotel. During the sweltering months of summer, the rich and famous packed their bags and fled the stifling air of the city, anticipating the luxurious accommodations offered at the Adelphi.

Social climbers and the upper crust arrived. Well-known mobsters and an Irish-American bare-knuckle boxer, John Morrissey, waltzed in and out of the hotel’s front entrance on more than one occasion.

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New Vision Encourages A New Beginning The Adelphi Hospitality Group bought the Adelphi Hotel in 2012. Folks in Saratoga and surrounding towns watched the progress intently, wondering if its history – the very essence of the building –


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would be lost under new ownership. And renovations that were supposed to take months somehow turned into five long years. That’s what happens when you tear down walls

and discover some surprises, most of them unwelcome. The Adelphi celebrated her grand re-opening in October 2017. And although she has indeed undergone extensive changes, renovations and upgrades, she still reflects back to a more genteel, Victorian era. From the grand front entrance to the refined restaurant Blue Hen and pub-like atmosphere of Morrissey’s Lounge – built to honor an important figure in Saratoga’s history – it both looks and feels like a well-choreographed dance between the past and present. In the bedrooms, overnight guests might find signs of the area’s colorful history in a well-worn hardcover book or framed artwork from the 1800’s. The library showcases old shipping trunks and an old-fashioned typewriter. Spectacular views can be seen from the balcony, which overlooks Broadway below. Original settees, mirrors, lamps, and tables have been painstakingly reupholstered and refinished. Today, they’re placed throughout the common areas of the hotel. 32 ultra-modern guest rooms grace the establishment, each one oozing appeal – to both the history

buff and contemporary traveler. They feature heated bathroom floors, stand-alone tubs, bidet toilets, and extraordinarily comfortable beds. Even the banisters and railings leading travelers from the fourth floor to the lobby are crafted from the original structure, though now reinforced for added stability. Small Luxury Hotels of the World The Adelphi Hotel lost none of Saratoga’s historical impact during its restoration. Today, it can be found on the elite, invitation-only list of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. And this present-day Adelphi plans to be open for business on Broadway year-round, not only during Saratoga’s esteemed seven-week track season, like the old hotel. Some people say John Morrissey passed away in his private suite at The Adelphi Hotel, May 1st, 1878, holding the hand of a priest. Others believe he died at the hotel’s bar, enjoying a drink with family and friends. All agree that his death was monumental, his loss mourned by thousands.

Find out more about Morrissey’s lounge on the next page.

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Old World Ch

M BY Theresa St. John


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orrissey’s Lounge, named after Irish prizefighter, gangster, senator, and statesman John Morrissey, sits tucked away and off to the right, inside Adelphi’s sumptuous hotel lobby. Rich dark wood, supple leather seats, and several round tables seem to mirror the colorful character credited with bringing horse racing and high stakes gambling to Saratoga Springs. The lounge issues a warm welcome to people strolling up and down Broadway, inviting them in for a unique, intimate dining experience.

Photos Courtesy of The Adelphi Hotel

h a r m R e v i s i t s B r o a d w ay Known for his dramatic 37 rounds of fisticuffs with a contender named Sullivan, Morrissey could also be quite charming and polished. He visited the Adelphi frequently during the 1860’s and was often found enjoying a drink at the bar with the likes of William Travers, John D. Rockefeller, and Mark Twain. Today the barroom offers a more casual, laid-back atmosphere. Inventive cocktails, small plates, and several eclectic shared dishes tempt guests to place an order. Elegant wine pairings, local craft 31 |

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beers, and an assortment of fine whiskeys round out some of the best culinary delights served in the area. When doors open at 11 am, patrons arrive ready to mix business with pleasure. The drink menu is inspired by John Morrissey’s prizefighting prowess and Saratoga’s love for horse racing. You can try Stings like a bee; Kentucky straight bourbon, Lillet Blanc, orange, and honey clove syrup, or sample their Dead Heat Daiquiri; a delicious mix of spiced rum, black pepper syrup, lime, egg white, and raspberry key lime jam for proof positive. Those guests who prefer beer won’t be disappointed either. On draft, Morrissey’s pours Bells two hearted ale, Guinness, Southern tier old man Winter, and Browns uncommon porter, to name a few. And they offer bottled beers as well; from Coors Light and Heineken to Lake Placid UBU Ale and Founders Porter. With every sort of brew in between, there’s sure to be an old standby or a new favorite to pick from. The wine list is extensive and offered by the glass, in a carafe, or by the bottle. Patrons can celeLINKS & LIBATIONS

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brate a win with business partners or commiserate heartbreak with good friends over sparkling, rose, white, red, or sweet wine. And as for whiskey selections, Morrissey favors rich bourbons, rye, Irish, Blended Scotch whiskeys, and an excellent Japanese single malt. Many are ‘big’ whiskeys, dominating the mouth-much like Morrissey dominated the ring. Whether you choose fire roasted oysters, crispy calamari, or maple-glazed candied bacon for starters, be sure a few friends tag along when you’re ready to sample the lounge’s selection of small plates. Test drive their dinosaur kale salad, spicy ahi tuna lettuce cups, three meat flatbread pizza, or fantastic steak frites. For dessert, you can bet your bottom dollar on Choco Tacos, Hazelnut Brownie Alaska, Pistachio Crème Brulee, Joe’s Bag-O-Doughnuts or a Cheesecake Lollipop Tree – inside this club room, you just can’t pick a loser. Dare you to try.

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Champions Retreat

Nines, Wines, and Memorable Times By John Mooshie


ome of the best golf courses in the country can be found at clubs you’ve probably never heard about. Champions Retreat, a private golf retreat in Augusta, Georgia, is one such club. I had never heard of it even though I’m very much involved in golf courses, their history, their design, and their facilities. Champions Retreat is not a wonderful Retreat because it has three nine hole courses designed by three legends of the game. It’s not a great Retreat because its food and beverage operation will rival the best in the country. And it isn’t 5 stars because its facilities compare to Ritz Carlton. No, Champions Retreat is amongst the best in the country because it offers all of that plus a staff that will out service the best of the rest. A Unique Golfing Experience that evokes a passion, an obsession, a romance, and a pleasant familiarity with trees, sand, and water. “May your ball lie in green pastures... and not in still waters.” The three nine-hole courses are built around distinct areas of natural topography…an Island, a Bluff, and a Creek. Luck of the draw determined which legendary golfer would design which nine. Arnold Palmer, drawing first, drew the “Island.” Jack Nicklaus then drew the “Bluff” which left the

Photos Courtesy of Champions Retreat

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“Creek” for Gary Player. Palmer’s “Island” course flows between the majestic Savannah River and the Little River. With spectacular hardwoods and pines throughout, Palmer purposely raised the fairways to take advantage of the serene vistas that overlook the fluent waters. The Nicklaus “Bluff” course has some great elevation changes, challenging doglegs both right and

left, and his typical risk/reward challenges. It’s one of the best Nicklaus nines I’ve played. Player’s design of the “Creek” opens through a beautiful wetland area and finishes in the upland weaving through a forest of native hardwoods. I spoke with several golfers who thought it was his best design ever. Three great players…three great nines! “With bottles of wine to drink when we dine” From “Valentino” by Gilbert O’Sullivan: The first clue that you are about to experience a remarkable culinary treat is when you’re introduced to Doug Snyder, the Director of Food and Beverage. A certified Sommelier, Doug commits his highly skilled staff to providing a dining experience that will exceed your utmost expectations. LINKS & LIBATIONS

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The second clue is the work of culinary art delivered from the kitchen by Augusta native and Executive Chef Jeremy Miller. His cuisine speaks with a Southern accent, and you won’t soon forget how his 15 years’ experience with diverse international and domestic cuisine techniques works its way into your choice of menu. Doug and Jeremy are the 1-2 punch that has elevated the Augusta dining scene to a new level.

All’s Well That Ends Well At the end of the day, the rewards of hospitality continue to delight. Members and guests choose from sixteen distinctive cottages that will each accommodate four to eight couples. Rustic views, Southern retreat style and genuine hospitality are part of every leisure getaway and corporate retreat. No place is this more evident than in their charming accommodations. Convenient to all facilities, the cottages feature a full kitchen, fireplace, and cozy, common area perfectly suited for sharing stories after a rewarding day on the golf course, relaxing with friends, planning the next round of golf or enjoying full-service catering from the Grille House. While each location offers its own unique benefits, the one common thread is the exceptional attention to detail and professional service from their dedicated staff.

Furnishings and decorative touches have been personally selected with a blend of understated elegance and cozy comforts. It’s just like home. . The Charm of The Barn The Barn at Champions Retreat, a charming facility unique to the Augusta area, offers an unforgettable backdrop to host any event, whether it is an intimate gathering, grandiose celebration or somewhere in between. With 10,000 sq. ft. to accommodate just about any gathering, The Barn is perfectly designed to host corporate events, reunions, wedding and anniversary parties, formal dinners, or a good old fashioned hoe-down. Themes of chic, country charm

or sophisticated elegance are easily accommodated in a rustic setting. State of the art audio/visual and kitchen equipment, on-site catering, full bar capabilities, a performance stage, and dance floor are available to handle anything your imagination can dream up. Membership for the Discriminating Buyer Membership certainly has its privileges, and Champions Retreat goes the extra step for its members as well as to encourage membership. Top rated golf, culinary excellence, accommodating facilities and 5-star service are a given. Members are also offered the opportunity to own a piece of the Retreat through existing cottage purchase or build. Try Before you Buy Masters week in Augusta offers a special opportunity to experience the ambiance and all its character at Champions Retreat. They open their retreat to the discerning golfer or corporate executive on a first come first serve basis so as to give guests an actual feel for what a prestigious retreat offers. Information can be found at . Some of the most highly rated golf retreats are little known and tend to fly below the radar. Champions Retreat certainly is one such venue and a perfect fit for the discriminating golfer. 39 |

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The Past, Present, and Future Meet in


By Betsi & Jim Hill


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t. Augustine. This historic city, the oldest in the USA, conjures up thoughts of sea battles, history, Ponce de Leon, the iconic St. Augustine Lighthouse, and of course, Henry Flagler and his two hotels - the Alcazar and the Ponce de Leon. Her history winds in and out of her present and future like a rope that has been spliced together. But St. Augustine offers more to the travel enthusiast. With more than ten golf courses to choose from, several golf academies and the World Golf

Hall of Fame, St. Augustine is the mecca for golf lovers. Eco-Tourism & Adventure Surrounded by miles of water, there are a plethora of water-centric activities for everyone. Eco Tours with St. Augustine Eco Tours is one of the most exciting and fun-filled eco tours we have taken. Zach McKenna shares his knowledge of the waterways - he’s been on the water since he was a child, and his love and concern for the marine environment

Photos Courtesy of St. Augustine CVB

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and its inhabitants just oozes from him. With his team of interpretive naturalists, Zack offers boating expeditions, kayak adventures, sailing excursions and private tours. As his eyes continuously roam across the water seeking a glimpse of birds, dolphins, and manatees he offers a non-stop narration of wildlife on the water. Dolphins playfully follow along in the boat wake; manatees gracefully lift in and out of the water, barely visible, while birds practice their artful acrobatics, wheeling happily in the sky high above us. Even with the gray, overcast day, Zach skillfully sought out wildlife to show us - and the wildlife was the hit of the trip!


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St. Augustine a City of Firsts “St. Augustine Distillery and the San Sebastian Winery have a unique partnership flipping barrels back and forth” — Phil McDaniel, President of the St. Augustine Distillery Company St. Augustine Distillery and San Sebastian Winery are neighbors, and it didn’t take long for these two companies to forge a new way to repurpose their barrels. When the distillery is finished with their whiskey barrels they send them over to the winery for their port wine to be to be finished in the bourbon barrels. When the winery is finished with their port barrels, they send them over to the distillery to be used to finish bourbon - creating a delicious, hand-crafted, small-batch port finished bourbon. When you tour the distillery, you are walking back through time. The building, once the historic Florida Power & Light Ice Plant, built in 1907, was intentionally chosen for its location on the local trolley route. It was constructed as part of St. Augustine’s first power and ice complex, and up until 1953, it was still an ice plant. When Phil and his team purchased the building in 2011, the dream was, as Phil has said, “to demonstrate that Florida is a state that can make some bad ass spirits using local agriculture - corn, wheat, citrus, and sugar cane. We have the potential to be a powerhouse.” Just as St. Augustine’s history is an integral part of everyday life, the same is true of the distillery. The ice plant was the first commercial block ice plant in

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Florida and in keeping with the theme of firsts, St. Augustine is Florida’s first bourbon distillery - first company since Prohibition to make bourbon in the state. Grain to bottle to glass St. Augustine Distillery’s spirits are American Made, and the company is American Proud. 219 Steps to the Top Built in 1874, the St. Augustine Lighthouse still uses the original Fresnel lens to light up the evening sky. 219 steps up will take you to the gallery platform; 231 steps will take you to the lens room. The lens is nine feet tall and has 370 handmade prisms.

keep the light burning.

The lightkeepers house was designed as a duplex for both the Head Lightkeeper and the First Assistant Lightkeeper and their families to live. Completed in 1876, the north side was for the Head Lightkeeper, and the south side was where the First Assistant Lightkeeper lived. Both the Head Light Keeper and the First Assistant Lighter Keeper worked to

Our Past is the Key The Maritime Archaeology and Education Center brings in undergrad and grad students from across the globe each summer for its underwater archaeology field schools. Like the strands of hemp woven together to make rope, the center is weaving modern maritime archeology into St. Augustine’s history. The Lighthouse Archeological Maritime Program LINKS & LIBATIONS

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(LAMP) is a group of professional archeologists who seek to uncover the hidden stories - sometimes buried for centuries - of the “Oldest Port” in our nation. As they unearth the treasures hidden by centuries of sand, silt, and water, St. Augustine’s history comes alive. In 2009 LAMP began excavating a 1782 British loyalist shipwreck off the coast of St. Augustine. The excavation has shed more light as to the role St. Augustine played during the Revolutionary War. Near the end of the Revolutionary War, a group of loyalist soldiers and civilians evacuated Charleston, SC. The group of 16 ships ran aground attempting to make the port at St. Augustine. Though the passengers survived the shipwreck, their belongings were lost to the mercy of the sea. Through the work of LAMP, the ocean floor has

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reluctantly given up some of the treasures from that are so much a part of St. Augustine’s heritage. the wreck. Muskets, cannon, clothing, irons, shirt buttons, shoe buckles and cooking cauldrons are Come to St. Augustine and discover the Past in some of the treasures recovered. the Present With such a variety of things to do, when visiting Keeping Tradition Alive, One Rib at a Time St. Augustine you will enter a time machine where Heritage Boatworks is also located on the muse- you’ll find the past in the present and experience um grounds. The Boatworks program, fueled by an the future. all-volunteer team, is dedicated to keeping alive the wooden boatbuilding techniques and traditions


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Beer Buzz in the Bushveld By Elsa Dixon


icture yourself sipping beer as you are mesmerized by the passing elephants and giraffes. At Arlington Brewery and Cidery, located in the middle of Dinokeng Big Five Game Reserve in South Africa this is an everyday occurrence. Dinokeng means “Place of many rivers,� and the Big Five refers to the five most dangerous animals to hunt: lion, rhino, buffalo, elephant, and leopard. The reserve is approximately a 90-minute drive from the Johannesburg International Airport. LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Private landowners are joining forces with the province to establish the game reserve. The landowners are turning farms into eco-tourism ventures, which benefit the local communities. Arlington Brewery and Cidery is an excellent example of this partnership. David Hutchinson, Arlington’s owner, ensures that you can have a “unique wilderness safari experience combined with an unforgettable craft beer tasting in a stunning setting.” The open-air restaurant features a pizzeria, brewery, and cidery. An electric fence surrounds the restaurant, allowing patrons to enjoy a beer tasting event while admiring the wildlife that may wander by, all from a safe distance. Emile Rademan, Arlington’s manager, says that living in the reserve is fantastic: “the only traffic I have in the mornings are the impalas or the zebras crossing the road.” The morning we arrived, we observed two lions crossing the main access road through the park. Beer Pit Stop on a Busveld Game Drive Route In addition to running the private farm, David Hutchinson is also in the hospitality business and


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runs ATS Catering Services. He is a ‘fanatic’ beer drinker and after experimenting with home brews for many years decided to do something about this passion and turn his dream into a reality. There was an increased demand for craft beers in South Africa. The farm, “being on the self-drive

route in the midst of the reserve, made it a perfect spot to stop and have a cold beer before carrying on with the game drive.� Combining their love for wildlife and passion for craft beer, David and his wife Carin opened Arlington Brewery and Cidery. Using the shell of an old vintage Volkswagen Beetle to build in a pizza oven, the eatery evolved. Adding long oak-topped tables and benches outdoors gives guests the unique experience of sitting and sipping a beer while spotting game in their natural habitat. Support from both the Reserve and the local community have contributed to the success of Arlington Brewery and Cidery. The Watering Hole Arlington opened its doors in February 2017. Six months after opening, Arlington had grown large enough to require a full-time restaurant manager and brewer. David enlisted the help of his family friend, Emile Rademan. The Bushveld in the Beer Situated in the Bushveld, the libations pay homage to the area. The Bushveld Bliksem Lager took

some time to perfect since borehole water, more alkaline than regular water, is used and the Ph level of the water had to be refined to avoid a hazy beer product. Another challenge was to regulate the tanks overheating because of the hot weather in the reserve. The lager’s base is SAB Pale Malt, and a small amount of carafe malt with US Amarillo hops added. The beer has a 5% alcohol level and a delightfully light taste, ideally suited for this climate. With its 10% alcohol level Boris, the Buffalo Stout is denser than the lager and has a mixture of pale malt, carafe and toasted barley as a base. It has an enjoyable aftertaste and is popular with women and on rainy days. The Red Hartebeest Ale is a combination of SAB pale malt, Munich, and Carared type 1 malt, and the hops used are Amarillo and Hallertau. This tasty ale is very refreshing, especially in the Bushveld heat. For the classic Pilsner, a combination of SAB pale malt is used, to51 |

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gether with Amarillo and Hallertau as the predominant hops. Its tongue-in-cheek label, Bush Pig Bugger, hints that the beer can have a ‘naughty’ kick to it!

A gin and tonic pre-mix called Django the Jackal is available on tap. This drink is considered very refreshing in the summertime, but one should remember that the ‘jackal’ is a sly animal and can pounce unawares.

What’s on Tap? Cider & More The flavor of Ringo the Rooibokkie Cider with its 5% alcohol level, changes weekly. Yeast is added to the 100% pure lemon concentrate while sometimes the brew is infused with lemon skins for a sharper taste.

Arlington was asked to cater a big event and provide a drink called R&R. This drink is hugely popular with South African holidaymakers to the neighboring country of Mozambique. The secret ingredient is ‘Tipo Tinto’ rum or the ‘Island Spirit,’ enjoyed in Mozambique for over 150 years. Following the event and high demand of R&R, Arlington has kept


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R&R on tap, using raspberry soda and a double shot rum in the mix. Every second month Arlington Brewery likes to arrange a beer fest or braai for the community. Successful events this year have included an Oktoberfest and a National Braai Day. Emile loves his work and says that what makes it fun is that there are so many ideas and room for growth.

Arlington Brewery and Cidery is open Wednesday until Fridays from 11 am – 8 pm Saturdays 11 am – 9 pm Sundays 11 am – 3 pm Website: Contact: Emile Rademan Contact phone number: +27 (0)72 125 1967


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Beach Bar Dreams Lead to

Akademia Brewing Company Athens, Georgia

By Judy & Len Garrison


o one can deny that the craft beer scene continues to soar with breweries opening every day all across the country. And in a college town, beer experts with the palate to match are brewing up the future in the blink of an eye. Two University of Georgia graduates have returned to their stomping grounds and are some of the newest kids on the Athens beer scene. Both are trading in their corporate suits for baseball hats with logos to become the next player in the craft brew scene. 55 |

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Beach Bar Believer About 20 years ago after graduation from The University of Georgia, Matt Casey and his wife Tonya created an exit strategy from their corporate world in which they expected to find themselves: to open a bar and grill on the beach. Athens, Georgia, is a long way from the beach, but the seven palm trees that have been planted and are taking root outside of Akademia Brewing Company on the east side of town reminds Casey that dreams come in all shapes, sizes, and locations.

His corporate world took him to Europe, the Czech Republic and Germany, where his beer at dinner subconsciously fine-tuned his palate as well as eagerness to materialize his passion for making beer. Last October, after multiple business plans, tons of research and searching for the right partners, Casey opened Akademia Brewing Company brewpub. With his partner, Morgan Wireman who had the same love affair with German beers during his European travels, they set the bar high, and both are constructing their own piece of the craft beer revolution.

“Big corporate beer America,” says Casey,” wants you to think beer should be a big, flavorless, crystal clear, bubbly drink that you pound down in volume.” He is excited that craft beer has changed the perception of what beer really is. Casey continues, “We want to create a beverage that is tasty and different from what big beer marketers want you to think it is.” Three months into operations, they have already created an infrastructure for growth. “We’re ready to drop 13 tanks in here [lining the event space walls] when we are able,” says Casey. For head brewer Wireman, his goal is simple, “to make a beer for everyone. We have 12 or 13 different beers on tap, from sour beers, stouts, IPAs, Belgian, we cover all bases.” There’s Hades’ Hounds Hunker Down Brown (paying homage to the year of the Georgia Bulldogs), Hoprodite (named after Aphrodite with notes of grapefruit and orange), Noctua (an Imperial Stout named for their little owl with robust chocolate notes), and the writer’s favorite, Hoppy KI-Yay Mr. Falcon (defined by the grapefruit and lemongrass ending). 57 |

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The Greek mythology pattern flows through the branding and all the way down to the beers. “I wanted it to evolve around our base in Athens,” says Casey, “developing a life-long consumer.” Casey’s research took him back to the founding moments of The University of Georgia and the one request that its surrounding city be named after Athens, Greece, where Plato and Aristotle developed higher learning. The Greek theme seemed the perfect fit. And his wife loved owls, so he joined the two and Akademia was born. The Greek drachma necklace he wears—on one side a small night owl, on the reverse, Athena—to remind him that his beach found him. Lodging For the B & B experience, check into Ashford Manor, located in Watkinsville. The home’s history dates back to the mid-1800s; in 1893, the Ashford’s build the grand Victorian that stands today. Experience the new Hyatt Place Athens, located


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in downtown and is a perfect location to set-off on foot to explore the downtown as well as the University of Georgia campus. Two other trendy options, Hotel Indigo and The Graduate, both in the downtown area. Dining You can’t miss contemporary Southern cuisine at the Five and Ten, the masterpiece of the James Beard winner and executive chef Hugh Acheson. The unique cocktails are enough to draw you in. If breakfast that lights your fire, try Mama’s Boy, located in Athens downtown and at The Falls. There’s aren’t enough words to rave about the Biscuits and Gravy or the Georgia Peach French Toast. Open until 3 p.m. daily; be prepared to wait in line. Trust me; it’s worth every second. A new star in the sky, home.made located on Baxter Street, offers inventive twists on old standards. I was hooked at Tomato Pie.

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Barefoot Elegance at the

Edgewater Beach Hotel Naples, Florida by Tim Bona

Photos Courtesy of Edgewater Beach Hotel and The TIburรณn Golf Club LINKS & LIBATIONS

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ave you heard of the “Blue Mind”? Repeatedly, compelling and practical research regarding our personal and emotional relationship with WATER has reminded us all about the health benefits of spending time near, WATER. Beyond its inherent beauty, WATER can soothe the soul and offer more peace, sea air is charged with healthy negative ions which can help our bodies absorb more oxygen as well as improve alertness, and the soothing sounds of water lapping on the shore and the call of the seabirds will help you, get this … relax. WATER has a remarkable tendency to draw the soul and body toward it, relieving much of our daily stress. The story of the Edgewater Beach Hotel is one of laid-back allure and the understat-

ed enchantment of seaside living. Surrounded by swaying palm trees in a quiet, elegantly landscaped residential neighborhood in southwest Florida, lays an intimate beachfront retreat, the Edgewater. As the name implies, the Edgewater is situated directly on the sugar white sands of the Gulf of Mexico, amidst the casual luxury of Naples, Florida, and just 40 minutes from SW Florida International Airport (RSW), or 15 minutes from Naples Municipal Airport (APF). Recently named again, for the third year in a row, as the ‘Healthiest and Happiest City in the U.S. by Gallup, Naples may seem like a tranquil gulf coast town, but this alluring community is a haven for sophis61 |

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ticated fashionistas, a tropical natural paradise for families, and also one of the top golf destinations in America. “Barefoot elegance,” is how Edgewater Beach Hotel general manager Laura Radler describes the ambiance of this tranquil, exclusive boutique refuge. The only all-suite hotel on the beach in Naples, the Edgewater is an AAA Four Diamond Hotel, part of the Preferred Hotels & Resorts prestigious LVX Collection, Conde Nast Traveler Reader’s Choice Top 10 Florida Hotels, and a member of the Opal Collection, a premier assortment of luxury hotels and resorts. Laura went on to share that the hotel provides “a true oasis of intimacy with the sea” for travelers looking to escape the crowds and chaos so often found at larger resorts. LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Ideal for families of all sizes, each of Edgewater’s elegant, recently re-appointed 125 rooms are either one, two, or three-bedroom suites. Decorated in shades of blue (WATER) and white with artwork reflecting the serene, ocean side surroundings, the living areas are warm and comfortable, complete with oversized chairs and couches, and exude a freshing and relaxed contemporary vibe. Granite top surfaces with modern, full-size appliances in the kitchen along with attractive hardwood floors make you feel like you’re residing in your own home away-from-home sanctuary on seven miles of uninterrupted beach, complete with a private balcony overlooking endless azure WATERS. The Edgewater entices guests with direct access to its professionally managed beach, just steps away 63 |

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from their suites, where attendants Allen and Alex greet them with enthusiastic smiles and courteous service. Private cabana or beach bed today? Umbrella for some cool shade? Paddle board or kayak? Sand toys, shovel and buckets for the kids? Or maybe just a beach chair to enjoy a book as the surf serenades you? Every detail is cared to including the orderly and very functional pool deck adjacent to the beach. The large, sparkling leisure pool is ideal for guests of all ages, whereas the two-lane lap pool is the consummate water amenity for more active guests, as well as the modern fitness center.


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Away from the WATER, ever so slightly, the Edgewater is in close proximity to several of Naples’ finest golf courses designed by globally acclaimed architects. Three blocks away is Jack Nicklaus’ very recent, masterful re-design of Naples’ very first 18-hole layout, The Naples Beach Golf Club. The Tiburón Golf Club, LINKS & LIBATIONS

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again just minutes away, features two environmentally friendly designs by Australian golf legend, Greg Norman. Host to both the PGA tour’s QBE Shootout and the LPGA tour’s CME Group Championship, Tiburón features unique, stacked sod wall bunkers, coquina shell waste areas and an absence of conventional rough,

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all carved out of 800 acres of lush native foliage, creating a very memorable golf experience. Also within a short drive, is nearby Lely Golf Club, home to two classic courses by Lee Trevino and Robert Trent Jones, Sr. Trevino’s Mustang design is framed by countless, alluring palms and is routed through serene wetlands. Jones’ Flamingo Island remains one of the nation’s premier public courses

and is a magical blend of strategic, breathtaking natural beauty. Like all the impressive golf, vacationers at the Edgewater are not only at the gateway of the ancient beauty of the Florida Everglades (more WATER) but also the Old Naples Historic District, where world-class shopping, art galleries, and in69 |

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ternational dining on Fifth Avenue South and Third Street are all accessible by complimentary shuttle. Tin City, a quaint waterfront village with more than 40 eclectic shops, is another option for shopping nearby, including those who decide to wander off the lushly landscaped, pedestrian friendly promenades of Old Naples. In addition, the capable concierge will remind you of local live music, outdoor LINKS & LIBATIONS

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concerts, acclaimed regional theatre, a world-class philharmonic, Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens, and the Sun-N-Fun Lagoon (more Water) Waterpark, all just minutes away from the friendly confines of the Edgewater. On the culinary side of the experience, the Edgewater’s warm and plush lobby with glossy hardwood

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floors accented by red and orange Art-Deco style décor, opens up directly into Coast restaurant. Enjoy internationally inspired cuisine and fresh seafood entrees in a comfortable, yet sophisticated atmosphere, complete with soothing vistas of the beautiful pool courtyard and the blue WATERS of the Gulf.

The meal team here only serves up the freshest, local ingredients, and the chef will even take time away from the kitchen to speak with you tableside about any specific food allergies. On the lighter side of the gastronomic spectrum, the Reflections Pool Bar will complement your sun splashed afternoons on the pool deck with an exciting menu of tropical drinks and entrees from the Coast kitchen. Beyond the diverse and interesting food and drink menus, what really sets this tranquil seaside retreat apart is their extensive cocktail offerings. They take the art of vacation very seriously at the Edgewater Beach WATERING holes. For example, Cory and LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Greg, the “dueling bartenders,” have been serving returning guests for nearly two decades with their time honored recipes for the Bloody Mary and the Caribbean Smuggler (yes, lots of Rums in this one), a concoction that hasn’t even been on the menu for the past eight years, but all the beach lovers still order it. Later in the evening, they’ll prepare a S’more Cocktail for your enjoyment … Cory will enthusiastically mix Godiva Chocolate liquor with Vanilla Vodka and Toasted Marshmallow Syrup, then pour into a chocolate rimmed martini glass dipped in graham cracker crust with floating marshmallows drizzled with chocolate syrup. Just another day ocean-side, right?

An inspiring setting for intimate meetings, romantic beach weddings, and special events for up to 80 guests, the Edgewater exudes a kindness and warmth through its courteous staff, many of whom have been sharing their caring spirit for decades. Service is genuinely friendly, and the first person you will probably meet is David, the bellman, who has held that position at the Edgewater for 24 years, unheard of in an industry known for turnover. David shares, “It’s all about the guests. I really enjoy seeing the families, many from abroad, returning year after year. They become part of the Edgewater family and I genuinely appreciate the opportunity seeing them again.” Cory, one of those “dueling bartenders,” shared with me out at the Reflection bar the time he implemented a “sundae do-over” for a family visiting from Ohio. Apparently, the two teenage daughters were surprised when the ice cream sundaes they ordered from room service arrived with just a scoop of vanilla with chocolate syrup, not what they expected. Cory heard about this and took the initiative to stop at the store to pick up a “complete” variety of sundae toppings and room service surprised the girls with new and improved sundaes. Those young girls from Ohio are all grown-up and now return to the Edgewater with families of their own in tow, all craving Cory’s sundaes.

The Edgewater Hotel truly is an enchanting retreat, where multiple generations of vacationers come to experience not only the calming effects of WATER-side living, but also the anticipation of possibly seeing the rare “green flash” as the sun sets on the Gulf. Heads up, David will encourage you to camp out at the fire pit area adjacent to the beach for this natural spectacle, where Cory will be happy to serve you one of those S’more cocktails. Another relaxing day will than soon come to an end at the Edgewater, as the last few calls of the seabirds wane out over the sea, and the soothing sounds of waves lapping on the shore remind you of the magical benefits of being in very close proximity to … WATER.


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Adobe Guadalupe

Mexican Winery Touched by Angels By Noreen Kompanik


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ocated only a few hours from San Diego just across the Mexican border, Valle de Guadalupe has become one of the most intriguing and appealing wine regions in North America. Green valleys, boulder-covered hills, mountain ranges and some excellent wines make this a perfect destination to visit. And there’s no better way to experience the Valle than a stay at Adobe Guadalupe Vineyards and Inn.

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Following the Signs The signs on the picturesque ruta del vino (route of the vine) are not always clear. With the wine region growing by leaps and bounds, part of its rustic charm remains its dusty dirt roads leading past miles of vineyards, and its hit or miss signs. But to Tru Miller, owner and much-loved matriarch of Adobe Guadalupe Vineyards and Inn, the signs couldn’t have been clearer. Yet, it almost didn’t happen this way. Tru and her husband Donald, moved to the “Valle” as the locals call it, from California in 1996. Donald initially considered buying a vineyard in Sonoma, but plans were put on hold in a twist of fate when their beloved son Arlo’s life was tragically cut short in a car accident. Arlo had considered taking a year off from college to work with his Dad on the vineyard project. He’d become fascinated with Mexico, falling in love with its colorful culture and warm, friendly people. When the Millers went to collect Arlo’s personal items from school, a portrait of Our Lady of Guadalupe adorning his wall tugged at his mother’s heart. Following Arlo’s death, Tru couldn’t bear the thought of buying a vineyard. In her mind, the plan was put to rest alongside her son—or so she beLINKS & LIBATIONS

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lieved. Donald later encouraged Tru to accompany him on a trip to Valle de Guadalupe. Donald found land for sale, rekindling his dream of owning a vineyard. After the trip, Tru spoke to her mother in Holland about the land. A few weeks later, an envelope arrived filled with Dutch Guilders in the exact amount of the sales price though the cost of the property had never been discussed. For Tru, this was a miraculous, unexpected sign. Later, on a trip to Paris, Tru was drawn to visit the Cathedral of Notre Dame. Just outside the doorway sat a Mexican chair with a sarape draped over it. It seemed out of place at the cathedral, but its image stayed with her. Two years later, the Millers returned to Europe for a place to lay Arlo’s ashes. Once again, she visited Notre Dame only to find that the chair and sarape were now a part of a side altar dedicated to none other than the Virgin of Guadalupe. This was yet another sign that building their vineyard in Valle de Guadalupe was indeed the right move. Building the Winery The Millers purchased grapevines from France 79 |

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and built their beautiful home. Tru wanted to call it Adobe Guadalupe. Though strongly urged to have more than one name in mind, Tru stuck to her guns. As it turned out, the name had never been previously registered. Things continued to magically fall into place. When it was time to hire a winemaker, it was fortuitous that Hugo d’Acosta, the pioneer of Mexican winemaking, agreed to work with them in establishing the winery. Ground to Grape It’s true that everyone loves the winemaker—the wizard who works magic with the grapes to produce the perfect bottle of wine. But at Adobe Guadalupe in Mexico’s wine valley, the talented wine-making team is aware the magic begins even sooner. It starts with the dirt and finding someone who can marry all the natural elements of the land with the grapevines. This man is the agronomist. Word around the Valle was that Ing Jose Fernandez was the very best. At the time, he’d been working for another vineyard but was looking for a new challenge. Tru happened to see him at a party and asked him to come to Adobe. And, much to her surprise and delight, he agreed. Fernandez planted 350 olive trees as a gift to Adobe. These trees produce some of the best olive oil in the region and this past year yielded their best olive crop ever.


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His friendship with Tru is one she treasures, especially since the death of her husband. Tru believes she could never run Adobe without Fernandez’ guidance and expertise. And 20 years later, he remains the most integral member of her team. Hailing from the colonial mining town of Zacatecas, Mexico, Fernandez graduated with a degree in Agricultural Science specializing in drip irrigation. He then traveled to Bogota, Columbia for his Master’s in Water and Soil. Fernandez knows the ground intimately. “Good soil,” he says, “grows good quality grapes. And it takes quality grapes to make great wine.” Fernan-

dez calls what he does at Adobe “reverse engineering.” “What do the grapes need?” he asks the winemaker. Then he goes back to the soil to make it happen. Grape to Glass Adobe’s current talented winemaker, Daniel Lonnberg comes to the Valle from Chile. He knows his wines well. He’s been instrumental in producing a white wine instead of all reds. Adobe also became the first winery in the Valle to make a Rose; at a time vintners were convinced the only grapes that would grow in the dry, warm temperatures of the valley were the reds.

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Winemaking here is a loving team effort, and Daniel works closely with Fernandez and Tru creating the award-winning wines Adobe is renowned for.

in French and American oak. The blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec has rounded tannins and a heavenly smooth finish.

Adobe’s vineyards produce some of the best wines in the Valle from at least ten grape varietals. 1998 the first grapevines were planted, and two years later yielded the first harvest.

The owner’s favorite is Serafiel, as was mine. Made with Cabernet and Syrah varietals, the blend has unique aromas of fruit, chocolate, and vanilla. An intense red color with purple nuances, the wine is definitely full-bodied. Tannins are soft and complex, absorbing flavors from the wood.

Adobe’s Fine Wines A cool-temperature high-ceiling domed structure houses the wine cellar and an impressive tasting room. Hundreds of French and American oak barrels line the walls of the cellar. When the massive doors of the elegant room are opened, views of the vineyard appear like a painted masterpiece. Wine tasting servers here are more than familiar with Adobe’s fine wines. With university degrees in Biochemical Engineering and Oenology, their depth of knowledge goes much deeper than any U.S. winery we’ve ever visited. They understand the complex process and science that goes into producing great wine. Classically produced blends of old-world reds reign supreme here. Each blend is named after an archangel. Tru believes they are her son’s best friends. Gabriel is the winery’s number one seller—an elegant, balanced Bordeaux-style aged ten months LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Rhone-styled Kerubiel, a recent gold-medal winner, is a true GSM blend (Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvedre) with a splash of Cinsault. The wine presents with a deep ruby color and a bouquet of red currant, cherry, and raspberry. Soft tannins highlight the fruit, with a good acidity and a complex aftertaste. The chance to tour the impressive cellar with Adobe’s proud and accomplished agronomist, learn their winemaking process, and taste future-released wines processing straight from the barrel was an unforgettable experience. Adobe’s Future Plans As we stepped outside to walk the vineyard, I asked Fernandez about the vineyard’s future plans. He bent down, took a handful of soil in his talented hand, pointed up at the sky and said: “If you match the grapes to your soil and weather, you’ll make a great wine.”

He went on to explain that as the Valle grows, there is more demand for water. The past year has been a dry one with not enough rain to replenish the aquifers. The vineyard’s sandy-loamed soil provides good drainage, but without the proper amount of rain and water, the vines eventually suffer.

To face this challenge, Adobe purchased land in the mountainous region of Ojos Negros (Black Eyes) in the foothills of Sierra Nevada de Juarez, the valley’s number one water source. Here they will plant more vineyards. With a twinkling smile, Fernandez proclaimed ‘it’s just another way of making this all work.”

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Adobe Guadalupe Inn By Noreen Kompanik


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ny visit to Adobe Guadalupe should include an overnight stay or two at the inn with its timeless elegance and classic beauty. Our room was one of six, all comfortably furnished and warmly decorated. Not surprising, each is named after an archangel. There are no phones or telephones in the rooms—the perfect opportunity to unplug. When strolling through the inn’s magnificent courtyard, its peaceful silence is broken only by the sounds of a flowing fountain. A refreshing pool on property is the ideal place to sun, swim, relax, or take in a glorious sunset. 85 |

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The adobe was specifically designed by its Iranian architect to celebrate the beauty of the Caspian Sea. The wind blowing from the west ricochets off the adobe naturally cooling the villa. The owner inhabits a private part of the Adobe, but guests are encouraged to make themselves at home in the common-space areas. The living room is gracefully sophisticated with a marble fireplace between expansive arched windows overlooking the vineyards. A library filled with books and tables adorned with photos and family collections add an element of warmth and love to the inn. The kitchen, with its long rustic table, beautifully set with fresh flower centerpieces invites guests to breakfasts crafted by talented chefs who’ve been with Adobe for years. Coffee, native fruits, and freshly-squeezed orange juice are followed by creative Mexican dishes like Huevos Rancheros. Featuring eggs from Adobe’s own chickens, the entree is served with homemade salsa, fresh guacamole, and beans. A garden adjacent to the vineyard produces an abundance of vegetables and herbs used by Adobe chefs.

Five-Course Wine Dinners Our five-course delectable dinner with wine pairing was yet another highlight of our weekend visit.

A walled bookcase in the kitchen contains a myriad of international cookbooks topped with a wooden shoe collection celebrating Tru’s Dutch heritage.

The romantic richly-appointed room with round tables, fine-linen tablecloths, flickering candles, china and silver settings was elegant and refined. A


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roaring fireplace added a warm, enchanting glow. Each dish created by Marta, a self-taught chef who’s been with Adobe for 18 years was more creative and tantalizing than the last. And servers are more than generous with their wine pours. Horseback Riding For those into horseback riding through the vineyards, Tru’s loved and well-trained Azteca horses with expert guides take riders through some of the most picturesque terrains in the Valle. Guests can choose either English or Western style riding. There’s also an option to add wine tasting at Monte Xanic, a neighboring vineyard. These are among the most popular activities offered at Adobe. The Gift of Giving If a visit to Adobe Guadalupe appears touched by magic, it’s likely a gift bestowed upon Tru because of her generous heart. Adobe offers three paid internships per year to college students who come to the inn and vineyard to

work alongside its experts in winemaking, agronomy, gastronomy, hospitality, and husbandry. And each summer, Adobe hosts a charity gala and dinner with proceeds going to local charities and international scholarships for students studying to become chefs, winemakers, agronomists or chemists. On our drive home, we reflected on the immense beauty of the winery and inn, the amazing wine and food we tasted, the inspirational stories we heard, and the peace and serenity we felt there. We wondered how we’d find the words to describe our incredibly memorable visit to this Mexican winery that truly seems to be touched by angels. Then a quote by Helen Keller came to mind: “The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched—they must be felt with the heart.” Adobe Guadalupe Website:

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Golf’s Year of the Jack in Panama

The Nicklaus-designed Santa Maria and Buenaventura Golf Courses By Tim Cotroneo


012 was a big year for golf in Panama. Jack Nicklaus designed not one, but two golf courses in this country known for the world’s most ambitious canal, straw hats, and strong coffee. The Golden Bear’s artistic talents needed to flow in contrasting directions when sculpting Santa Maria Golf Course in downtown Panama City, and Buenaventura Golf Course located in the south central region known as Rio Hato. That’s because Panama City and Rio Hato are as different as two locales can be. Panama City is home to 1.5 million residents, the Panama Canal, and a commercial skyline that rivals any metropolis in the world. By comparison, Rio Hato is a resort community that is as subdued as it serene. Santa Maria Golf Course in Panama City Nicklaus’ task was monumental when he took on Santa Maria Golf Course. His challenge was to insert a world-class 18-hole layout into downtown Panama City. This 7,000-yard championship track would be 15 minutes from the Tocumen International Airport, 20 minutes from historic Old Town, and 25 minutes from the Panama Canal. Oh, and by the way, Nicklaus placed the two nines on opposite sides of the South Corridor freeway. This grand slam of design spurred an interesting caveat as the

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construction process unfolded. Nearly every Santa Maria golf hole would include a backdrop of the city’s unending row of skyscrapers. The visual of hitting drives and second shots at amphitheater putting greens backed by 30-story buildings is a jaw-dropper of epic proportions. In addition to adjusting your senses to Santa Maria’s extreme vertical architecture, you also need to embrace the sheer magnitude of Panama’s diverse environment. The downtown region embraces a rainforest, the Pacific Ocean, and a bird population flaunting no fewer than 900 species. Add the newly opened Santa Maria luxury hotel to the mix, and your vacation options are as bountiful as the largest cargo ship passing through the canal. Buenaventura Golf Course in Rio Hato Drive 75 miles east of Panama City and the terrain outside your car window transitions from urban skyscraper to the lush countryside surrounding Buenaventura Golf and Beach Resort. Positioning Nicklaus’ Panama golf encore in Rio Hato seemed as natural as city dwellers heading to this ocean escape on weekends. If Buenaventura’s scenic beauty isn’t enough to pull you from Panama City, what if this 7,300-yard LINKS & LIBATIONS

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Paspalum track also included the only Cobra Performance Center in Central America? In addition to getting away from it all on one of the best beaches in all of Panama, golfers can also improve their swing under the watchful eye of the ultimate in 360-degree golf technology. The Buenaventura golf experience includes perfect conditions, Nicklaus’ trademark impeccable rolling greens, and a golf team with a shared expertise that is sure to help your game. When your round is over, luxuriate next door at the 900-acre Buenaventura Resort which features eight restaurants, a dozen infinity pools, and the always relaxing Corotu Spa. Beyond Golf- A Taste for Rum in Panama If Jack Nicklaus is the grandest name in Panama golf design, then Don Jose Varela Blanco is the Golden Bear’s equal when it comes to rum. In 1908, Blanco established the country’s first sugar mill. Today, Don Jose’s rum legacy continues via descendant Luis Varela. This third generation off-

spring heads up Varela Hermanos, the makers of Ron Abuleo, one of Panama’s oldest and most popular lines of rum. What distinguishes the Ron Abuelo collection is this rum is born from hand- harvested sugar cane. In fact, there still is a percentage of the family’s cane that is transported by ox and cart. Today the crown prince of Ron Abuelo rums is Centuria, a limited edition that draws from 30-year old reserves. What further distinguishes the Varela family name is that one member, Juan Carlos, was elected Panama’s President in 2014. The Craze Finds Panama – A Taste for Craft Beer The craft beer craze found its way to Panama as recently as 2013. One element of the craft boom that didn’t hesitate was adorning each new Panama beer with a catchy name. The Casa Bruja microbrewery in Panama City produces a variety of beers called Brujeria, or “Witch House.” One of its most popular beers is named after the dog food-eating pet goat owned by one of the brewery partners. “Chivoperro” means “GoatDog” in Spanish. Last year over $500 million was spent on beer in 91 |

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Panama. Rum sales were a close per capita second. Whether you’re drinking beer at Santa Maria, sipping rum at Buenaventura, or enjoying both back home, raise a glass and say, “Arriba, Abajo, Al Centro.” That’s Spanish for “Glasses up, Glasses down, Glasses to the front, and gulp it down.” Somewhere in the world the Golden Bear will tip his Panama hat to you.



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Once Dormant Now A Hip Place To Hang Out In L.A. By Kevin Wilkerson


ou can picture it. A sleepy town in the middle of an action-packed area, a recluse of a city trying to hide under the covers while other places around it are bustling with activity. It’s the kind of place where you expect to see Sheriff Taylor walking down the street, Goober filling your gas tank and Aunt Bee feeding you dinner. You know, a real-life Mayberry R.F.D., where time has stood still for decades. Hip and Eclectic El Segundo But no more. El Segundo – the one-time sleepy spot by LAX that was the occasional butt of Johnny Carson jokes – is now one of the hippest hangouts in Los Angeles. Yes, El Segundo. The traditional haunts are still around. Main Street Tavern, where beach volleyball legend “the Hov” (Tim Hovland, known for occasionally ripping down the nets when calls did not go his way) can be found almost every day. The Office, with its lively and sexy bartenders who like to put on a show while making your drinks; and, of course, the Purple Orchid tiki bar with its funky beverages like the Funky Monkey and the Scorpion, served in a volcano bowl. But now, a more refined side of El Segundo is being revealed. Places like a trendy craft brewery and tasting room which brews its own beers on site, a speakeasy-style brewery and spirits dis-


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tillery, a place where you get a wristband to pour your own beer selection from 60 taps, and a sprinkling of good restaurants. El Segundo also has the flagship Rock & Brews, the Gene Simmons/Paul Stanley-owned chain of restaurants that features dozens of craft beers with classic rock music videos playing on TV screens. All this is due in large part to the emergence of El Segundo as kind of a techy center of Los Angeles. It has several highend and “new generation� businesses. These include Big Door Studio, a TV production studio that counts NBC as one of its clients and HydroFlex, which provides underwater cameras for Hollywood movies. Hollywood Branded, a product placement company for TV shows and films; South Bay Customs, an upscale combination of a motorcycle shop, art gallery and live music venue; and Moto Art, a company that makes high-end furniture out of parts from rare airplanes. Emerging Craft Beer Culture From a craft beer standpoint, El Segundo Brewing Company ( is at the forefront of this evolution. El Segundo Brewing Company, established in 2010, is the centerpiece of the craft scene in the city, as well as being one of the first breweries in the area. El Segundo now has nearly a dozen craft breweries, most of them located in nearby Torrance. At the end of each workday, people flow into the place like the LINKS & LIBATIONS

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beer spilling out of its taps. They are greeted by about a dozen selections, among them Broken Skull IPA, Nitro Hyperon Vanilla Stout (Hyperion is the name of the water treatment plant in El Segundo), seasonal and special brews and, appropriately enough, a Mayberry IPA. Located on Main Street in the easily-walkable downtown, El Segundo Brewing Company utilizes Citra Mosiac and Simcoe hops (among others) and tropical fruits, pine and other ingredients to create its lineup of beers. But it’s not the only place to experience craft brews in town. Or even on the same block. Directly across Main Street is Rock & Brews, which has 26 craft beers on tap and another 20 in bottles. The seating is on picnic tables, either on its patio or its nowalls, open-air “inside” area. It is important to note that Rock & Brews closes early: 9:30 p.m. during the week and 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. A 30-second walk away is Brewport Tap House (https://www., a creative bar concept that is handson. Entering the brewery you get a wristband, then help yourself to any of its selection of 60 craft beers, with the taps lined up against a wall. You put your wristband up to the Brewport logo above the tap, then pour anywhere from one to 12 ounces

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(okay, it’s nearly impossible to stop at one ounce). The type of beer, brewery, the location of the brewery, and price per ounce are all listed on a small computer screen, and when your pour is finished, it tells you how much you poured. There are even taps for wines and sparkling wines. True craft and distillery fans will make the mile or so trek from downtown to Rob Rubens Distilling & Brewing ( Its tasting room is like a speakeasy – small, dark and with lots of wood. Among its five regular and three seasonal beers is the Machine Gun Kelly, a peanut butter


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porter with chocolate that’s like a liquid Reece’s Cup. It claims to have the best craft Kolsch in the U.S. Rob Rubens also makes spirits on site: bourbon, gin, vodka, rum and a white whiskey. But really, no night of tripping out in El Segundo is complete without a trip to the Purple Orchid Tiki Lounge. Located on Richmond Street less than two blocks from the trio of places on Main Street, it’s a dive bar masked as a tiki bar. Naturally, it’s dark with exotic drinks, tiki god stat-

ues and tropical wall decorations. It sometimes even has bands on the weekend. The drinks are potent – just as they should be – and pretty soon they will put you in Polynesian paradise.After an

evening of checking out the craftier side of this city, the Purple Orchid provides the perfect nightcap to a night out in El Segundo.

1 Club

1 Ball

More Fun


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May 2018  

Brews in Africa, Gorgeous Saratoga Springs New York, Golf in Panama, and More!

May 2018  

Brews in Africa, Gorgeous Saratoga Springs New York, Golf in Panama, and More!