It's pizza time folks! Dalia Ceja, Sales & Marketing Manager at Ceja Vineyards shares one of her favorite pizza incarnations made with fresh and zesty ingredients. Paired with Ceja Vineyards' Vino de Casa Red blend, this delectable dish will have you singing "Mozzarella!"
After a week of fretting about the weather, Super Bowl Sunday was going to be a glorious day in San Francisco. I pulled myself out of bed at 5:00 am and quickly checked out the window, awesome – no rain! A wave of relief passed over me as I stepped into the hot shower to awaken my body. In only a couple of hours I would be asking it to run farther than it has in 6 months. A little café con leche and an almond butter and homemade blackberry jam sandwich and I am out the door and on my way. I took the shuttle into the City from the Kaiser Office in Oakland with 3 friends (including one Kaiser employee), all geared up and ready for the run. At the starting line we were amazed at the number of people – 10,000 runners and a whole host of volunteers all up at the crack of dawn for an organized run through Golden Gate Park. It was a bit chilly, but we reluctantly gave up our warm ups and headed for the starting line. I could see it a good 200 yards in front of us, but with new chip technology timing the clock wouldn’t start ticking for me until I actually crossed the line.
We started out the race in a residential area, heading up Fell Street and then back around down Oak Street and into the park. I was pleased to find that a good portion of the race was at a very slight downhill, and welcomed those times when I could relax into my pace and catch my breath. It took a little while to warm up, but the sun was shining and it truly was a glorious morning. We ran all the way through the park, past the starting line (again) and all the way down to the Great Highway. I knew it was a flat out-and-back on the Great Highway, but I couldn’t see the turnaround point until I was almost right on top of it. I passed the time by watching the elite runners going the other way. The first guy looked relaxed and confident, like he was out for a morning jog – except he finished the race in an astonishing 1:06:08 (an hour and six minutes – that is fast 5:02 minute mile). No one was near him, certainly not the second place guy who was over two and a half minutes behind him! I kept my eye out for the first woman, as I passed by miles 8 and 9, she was coming back in a small pack of men and finished in 1:15:08 – a speedy 5:44 minute mile pace! Wow. Focusing back on my own running, I was feeling good and just had a little stiffness in my right leg. I made it to the turnaround and knew I was entering the final stretch. But as I whipped around the cones I was hit by a blast of cool ocean air. I rolled my eyes and groaned. Just my luck – a steady headwind for miles 10-12! I opted for some Gatorade at mile 10 for a little extra energy and kept chugging along. By mile 11, I was in glee – on 2 miles to go, I could do that with my eyes closed and a glass of Ceja Chardonnay in hand! With mile 12 in my sights and a sharp right turn back into the park (and out of the headwind) I was on my way home. In less than 8 minutes I would be done! Lots of people were lined up on the sidelines ringing cowbells and cheering everyone on to the finish. I gave a final little push a crossed the finish line…. Looking down at my watch – 1:48 and change. Just about what I expected, 8 minutes slower than my previous race, but for good reason – I had actually trained for that race. Hmmm, gives a girl something to think about. I better get out there and pound the pavement a little more before the next one!
~Wine Club Wendy
Mother and daughter duo, Amelia and Dalia Ceja, create traditional corn tacos of chicken and potato with a spicy fire roasted salsa. Ceja Vineyards' Vino de Casa White blend is on hand to complement this fabulous dish!
Try something new with one of Dalia Ceja's exciting new culinary creations - a savory open face sandwich with golden baked cinnamon bread topped with spicy jalapeño pepper jack cheese. Pair it with a glass of Ceja Chardonnay and you're on your way to a sensory epiphany!
March 20, 2010. This is the second year I have run the annual Carneros Fire Department Vineyard Run (www.carnerosfire.org) and that infamous hill up to the Artesa winery does not get any easier! If you have ever been to Artesa, you know it sits perched upon a little hill here in the Carneros region with gorgeous views and on a clear day you can see all the way to San Francisco. While this might make for an easy start to the race, it is one of the toughest hills I have encountered at a finish in a long time! Artesa hosts this fundraiser every year for the volunteer fire department, donating their space and wines for the participants. It includes a 5k and a 10k run (3.1 miles and 6.2 miles respectively) followed by a pancake and sausage breakfast (and vino too!).
I love this run. It’s not too big, somewhere around 900 runners; it’s always full of locals like my fellow Vinerunners as well as winery friends and others from around the community. I invited a running pal of mine to test his legs on the rolling hills of Carneros and he accepted – he’s training for the Boston Marathon this month and always a sure bet for any fun run I can dig up! He got a personal best on the course, but when I asked him how it went he said he was silently cursing me all the way out. Those rolling hills are beautiful, and though they seem trivial, you can definitely feel them as you are chugging along. I ran a respectable time, though 4 minutes slower than last year (indeed, I need to step up my training, I know) – it was however, still fast enough to win a bottle of Artesa’s Late Harvest wine. After a satisfactory race, a belly full of pancakes, and a bottle of wine in hand I left the race with a big smile on my face. Next year I might even coax some of my co-workers into running it with me. In the meantime, next up for me is the US Half Marathon on April 11th in San Francisco. It will be my first race across the Golden Gate Bridge – wish me luck!