We live in amazing times. Here in Northern California, we are blessed with an abundance of good food and good wine. Amador County wineries and the wine region also boast orchards, farms, and ranches that produce world class fruit, vegetables and meats. From the foothills to the Valleys of Napa, Sonoma, and Yolo counties the locally produced food movement is quite literally, gaining ground. And of course, we are only a short drive from the coast, where the abundance of the Pacific adds to the possibilities.

With all this abundance it is no wonder that we also enjoy world class restaurants, chefs, and sommeliers, people whose mission in life is to help us enjoy the food and wine our region produces and to share their passion for life’s gustatory pleasures. California attracts people from around the world. Our abundance is often enhanced with international flavors and preparations.

If you are reading this blog, you are among those who appreciate the good food and wine that is at our doorstep, and you find ways to indulge that appreciation.  Whether it’s dining out or preparing food in your own home, the ingredients we have at our fingertips are part of what makes life here in Northern California seem so charmed.

For me, a simple sip of Scott Harvey Barbera red wine brings all this abundance home. I open the bottle, pour some for my wife and myself, and we’ll sit out on our front patio and give thanks for the life we have built.

Recently, that gratitude has taken on a new and different tone for us, and many people who also have roots in Eastern Europe. My wife’s grandparents immigrated here from Ukraine in the early 1900’s and she still has family there. I recently learned that Jana Harvey’s father was also Ukrainian American. A member of the Greatest Generation, he fought in WWII.  When his troop liberated a Russian prisoner camp, he was able to communicate with them in Ukrainian.

I don’t think I have to describe the devastation that Ukraine is experiencing, but I will tell you that we spend even more time these days being grateful for what we have, where we are, and the protections afforded by our 246-year-old experiment in Democracy.

Please consider that there are many people right now who are in need, and for whom the simplest of meals is a blessing far beyond what we enjoy here in Northern California. If you can, please consider making a contribution to World Central Kitchen. They are feeding refugees from Ukraine in several locations in Eastern Europe. There are many similar organizations. This one has a stellar record of stretching your dollar to provide good food to those who need it.

I hope you continue to enjoy the bounty of Northern California, and especially Scott Harvey Wines. They are truly the result of Scott’s passion for Amador County, grapevines, wooden vats and stainless steel and all the minutiae of winemaking. So please, sip, and savor, and enjoy the abundance of Northern California, but also please consider how lucky we are to have it, and how much sharing a little bit of it could mean to people who are truly in need.