Travel to the vineyards of America's Pacific Northwest, without ever leaving Franklin. Your guide will be intrepid wine explorer Howard Gold, the source of so many of our favorite domestic wines. Taste beautiful Oregon Pinot Noir from the likes of Nichols and Dominio IV, then dive into WA with Cabernet and Bordeaux blends (Buty, Pomum), Syrah and other Rhone styles (Dowsett, more Dominio IV), and then glory in the 'other': bone-dry Riesling, Tempranillo, and Touriga Nacional. Many of these wines are made in quantities of 100 cases or less; we are lucky to be able to buy them at all, let alone open them up for a tasting. Howard is truly Mr Pac NW, and this is definitely a not-to-be-missed event.
The New Yorker's Shouts & Murmurs* column is one of my favorite distractions.