A Supposedly Fun Thing . . . That Actually Was Fun

A couple weeks back, I bitched about how the quintessential Seattle leisure ride up the Burke-Gilman to Red Hook brewery was nowhere near as fun as advertised. Alcohol and bicycles don't mix seemed to be the lesson I learned from the experience.

With a perfect Sunday on the way, some friends proposed riding back to Woodinville again. Oh, no. I said. I'm not going to spend an hour and a half biking around bloated and nauseated from booze and burgers.

Um, you're just doing it wrong, they replied.

This time -- altogether a more beautiful day -- we rode a half-mile past Red Hook to JM Cellars, up a windy drive lined with Japanese maples and evergreens, to the open French doors of JM's pastoral winery. We filled our glasses with syrah, grabbed some salami and cheese from the spread, and wandered down to the pond behind the winery, where we ate apples and simple sandwiches using bread we'd brought. The tasting cost $10, but most of it went toward bottles of JM's new semillon-roussane Bramble Bump white, which my friends stuffed into their backpack for the ride home.

After 90 minutes of lazing around the winery, we got back on our bikes and rode slowly back to Capitol Hill. No bloating, no hangover, no resentment and self-recrimination. Woodinville: I take it all back. The next time I do the ride, I've been told Januik Cellars/Novelty Hill is just as pleasant a destination.

Provided we actually get a summer.

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