Wine on Wednesday: Andre’s Favorite

This month, I am going to ask the characters from Blood Vine to introduce themselves and tell you about their favorite wines. First up is our hero, vampire Andre Maras.

How old are you? I am two-thousand years old, give or take a decade.

Where were you born?  I was born just outside of Rome, but my true home is the Dalmatian coast of Croatia, where I was turned into a vampire against my will in the first century after the birth of Christ.

What are your hobbies?  I find the modern notion of pastimes outside of one’s profession bizarre.  I am what I am—a winemaker, and so I enjoy working in my vineyards by moonlight, growing grapes, and making wine. And oh yes, out of vampire necessity, a relaxing game of cards.

What is your favorite wine? While I love wine, for the majority of my long life I have been unable to consume what I produce.  I do possess a very keen sense of smell, and I am able to enjoy the aroma of a glass of wine, and smell its characteristics better than humans can taste them.  Needless to say, this makes me finicky.

For many years I have admired the richness of wines produced by my fellow Croatian expatriate (though not fellow vampire) Mike Grgich, so I will name his Zinfandels my favorite.  If you are human, I highly recommend them.



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About amber.belldene

Amber Belldene grew up on the Florida panhandle, swimming with alligators, climbing oak trees and diving for scallops…when she could pull herself away from a book. As a child, she hid her Nancy Drew novels inside the church bulletin and read mysteries during sermons—an irony that is not lost on her when she preaches these days. Amber is an Episcopal Priest and student of religion. She believes stories are the best way to explore human truths. Some people think it is strange for a minister to write romance, but it is perfectly natural to her, because the human desire for love is at the heart of every romance novel and God made people with that desire. She lives with her husband and two children in San Francisco


Wine on Wednesday: Andre’s Favorite — 8 Comments

  1. Andre says: Hello Celia, It is a pleasure to meet you. I have asked Amber to type my answers because I despise computers. The Kaštel Estate Winery is in Sonoma County, north of where you live in San Francisco. We primarily make Zinfandel wines from rootstock I brought with me when I fled…um, that is, emigrated from Croatia.

    I understand you are familiar with a night club some of my friends frequent. I believe it is called Haven?

  2. Why yes, Andre. Haven is owned by my character Carina “Rina” Tranquilli and it’s one of the hottest dance clubs in the city.

    And Rina says to tell you she has you on the permanent VIP list. Feel free to visit anytime!

    Celia (and Rina)

  3. Hi Andre,

    Thanks for taking our questions today on Amber’s blog. It’s wonderful to finally meet you.

    Being a winemaker in Sonoma must bring you great joy. I’ve had a love affair going on with fine wine for many years. I would love to tour The Kastel Estate Winery – do you offer tours, and when are you available for tastings?


  4. Paula, personally, I am not available for tastings. (Amber here–cheeky Andre insisted I insert “one of those smiling faces.”) 🙂

    But we do have a tasting room in Healdsburg, and since people found out Pedro and Lucas met there, it has become something of a hook-up scene for a certain type of man. That is an unexpected boon to allowing Amber to write my story–those men are spending vast amounts of disposable income on my wine.

  5. Hi Samantha, Amber here. Andre’s green eyes are twinkling, but he’s refusing to say more than “read the book.” I’m going to agree with him on that one, as he’s a very complicated vampire! 🙂

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