The San Diego Reader is one of those free weekly publications that seems to survive solely on advertising. Miranda picks it up each week and I go straight for the Restaurant section and Crush. I read little else in it. Crush is penned by Matthew Lickona and delves into local wine stories. And Lickona finds some pretty interesting vignettes on wine in San Diego. Last week he gave us a little of the inside on Sideways from Julian Davies an Englishman who, it appears, taught Rex Pickett quite a bit about wine. Davies worked in a wine shop just around he corner from Pickett. In 1998, Pickett and Gittens ‘took a road trip up to the Santa Ynez Valley to taste some wine and play some golf. "He was a long time divorced," says Davies, "but he had learned that his ex-wife was about to remarry." (Gittens says that Davies was invited on the trip but had to work; Davies has no memory of this.) The trip started Pickett on a novel, and in '99, he showed Davies the manuscript, then entitled Two Guys on Wine, "which was a horrible title. He used it because they stopped at Fess Parker winery, and Fess actually signed a magnum to Two Guys on Wine."'
Fast forward to today where Gittens and Davies hold Irregular Wine Tastings at the Echo, a Los Angeles nightclub. And yes they have done a Sideways tasting. They have just done one in San Diego for the WineDining club. Matthew Lickona will tell you all about it.