A Sailor Jerry Salute to Salty Seamen

Sailor Jerry tattoo art

Norman Collins made his own very particular contribution to military history, lore and culture. Namely tattooing mainly scantily clad ladies on the biceps, forearms, backs and chests of countless navy servicemen. Collins, who became better known as “Sailor Jerry,” as the blinking, neon-lit sign above his tattoo parlor proclaimed, inked drunken sailors on shore leave [...]

The Gastro-Goth Lounge Napa Never Knew It Needed


Empire, a new lounge and restaurant in Downtown Napa next to Andaz Hotel (formerly Avia), ushered in its arrival with not one, not two, but three nights of grand opening festivities. Small plate bites were passed offering a peek at the small but eclectic menu (mashed potatoes, meatballs and mac and cheese on the “nostalgia” [...]

BottleRock Blasts Napa Valley

BottleRock Napa

In its wake, BottleRock, which rolled through Napa May 9–12, and was an unheralded success, has left little doubt that that Valley could play host to festival of this size. Though that hasn’t stopped a few local denizens from carping about traffic (which was startlingly light), VINE bus delays (which were about what they normally [...]

How to Make a Classic Pisco Sour

Today is apparently national pisco day in Chile, which we thought was, like, everyday in Chile (it may be, since it seems there is also a National Pisco Sour Day in February). But no matter. We don’t care a whit if that is a legitimate thing. Does it matter? This is one BS day we [...]

The Good, The Bad Religion and the BottleRock

Perry Farrell

This weekend — and this may be difficult for the Napa Vintners to reconcile — more people descended on Napa Valley than ever before. And — this may be harder still for the Auction’s organizers to reconcile — they likely spent more than any other group that ever came before them. And they spent it [...]

Vineyard ‘Aphrodisiac Perfume’

Grape Cluster Flowering

Last year about this time, when grapevines were beginning to flower, we wrote about the sex lives of grapes — how they are hermaphroditic, self-pollinating, and the flowers are, according to the decidedly unromantic Jancis Robinson, “unattractive” and “unspectacular.” But what is sex without love? This year we are feeling quite amorous about our just-blossoming [...]