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Monday, April 27, 2015

04/27/2015 - Umbria, Though Your Tastebuds and Your Lens

An intimate Photography, Food & Wine Tour in Umbria

With Master Photographer/Teacher Murray Rockowitz and Umbrian Cookbook Author/Teacher Suzanne Carreiro

Spend 8-1/2 splendid days touring Umbria with Murray and Suzanne (author of The Dog Who Ate the Truffle: A Memoir of Stories and Recipes from Umbria). We bring our skills, experiences, and passions together to create this unique photography, food, and wine tour. You’ll learn to cook authentic Umbrian recipes, you’ll eat delicious regional dishes and sip great wines, and you’ll learn to capture rich cultural experiences with your camera. By the end of the tour, you’ll feel like a local.


Author and Tour Guide

 Suzanne Carreiro lived in Umbria for a year and a half while researching her Umbrian cookbook, The Dog Who Ate the Truffle: A Memoir of Stories and Recipes from Umbria. During her time  in Umbria, she learned to speak Italian, made many new friends, and learned to cook authentic Umbrian dishes.

 Prior to writing her cookbook, her long career in food included developing recipes and writing for major publications and food companies, styling food for photography, and acting as PR director for Beringer’s Italian wines. Throughout Suzanne’s career, she has taught cooking classes—most recently at the world-renowned Culinary Institute of American St. Helena, where she lives. Suzanne is passionate about using good, fresh ingredients, preferably organic and locally grown. She’s also NUTS about Umbria!



Murray is referred to by fine art collectors as a “master photographer.” The label suites him–he is a master.  His work is well known among collectors of fine art portrait photography. Collectors seek him out for his insightful and beautifully crafted black-and-white portraits that he meticulously prints in his darkroom. His skill at printing is exceptional–one can understand why most of his portraits are in black-and-white. The depth of tone and richness cannot be matched by digital prints–nor can the story be told as well in color.  Murray has served private and commercial clients throughout the world for over twenty-five years.  Throughout his five decades of photography Rockowitz has also been passionately making personal photographs of life as he experiences it. Murray has exhibited his photography in numerous one-person and group exhibitions throughout his career in museums, galleries and various alternative spaces.

Over the last five or so years, he got bitten by the digital bug, fully embracing color and the digital medium. (Although I don’t think he’ll ever give up his Rolli, black-and-white film, or his darkroom.)

As a photographer, he is not only an artist, but a storyteller and a documentarian. Murray has taught at Napa Valley College, done guest lectures from Public Schools to the San Francisco Art Academy, and currently through the Petaluma Arts Center, Excel, private consultations, workshops in his studio, and other venues, bringing his passion and years of experience in photography and life into the classroom to inspire, teach, and learn with his students. He is really excited to teach while he tours with students in Umbria.


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

04/13/2015 - Slowing Down with Good Food and Golf at Silverado Resort and Spa

Chef Pablo Jacinto

A native of Oaxaca, Jacinto is one of eight siblings in a family where there were two terrific cooks — “my grandmother and my mother. With eight children, my mother was cooking all the time. I recall all the great moles and sauces … and I learned from that time.”

Pablo was raised in Mexico City, along with brother Erasto, who also decided to poke his nose in Napa Valley kitchens. The Jacinto brothers hooked up with restaurateur/chef Cindy Pawlcyn and her former business partners, with Erasto joining Pawlcyn in the kitchen at Mustards Grill for nearly two decades, and Pablo manning the stoves at Buckeye Roadhouse in Marin County. He also opened Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen with the noted valley restaurateur a decade ago.The brothers have worked side by side over the years as well. In Napa, they designed menus for both Tuscany and C Casa. Today, Erasto is executive chef at Napkins in downtown Napa, and brother Pablo is chef de cuisine at The Grill at Silverado Resort and Spa.


Chris Costas

Chris has been the Food and Beverage Director at Silverado Resort and Spa for one year.  He oversees all food and beverage operations including The Grill, The Mansion Lounge, the Banquets Department.  He is also the liaison for the Thomas Keller pop up restaurant Ad Lib that will be at Silverado through late October.

Costas has certification as a Sommelier.  He was previously Director of Restaurants at the Omni Montelucia and General Manager of the Sancturary Resort and Spa, both located in Paradise, Arizonia.  Chris also was Head Sommelier for Princess Cruises Alaska and Hawaii cruise ships.


Tim Geesey

A five year veteran of Silverado Resort and Spa, Tim is the Director of Golf at Silverado Resort and Spa, managed by Troon Golf.  Tim oversees all aspects of golf operations including course maintenance, membership, lessons, retail.  He also oversees the PGA Tournament coming back to Silverado Oct. 12-18.

Geesey comes to us from the world famous Ocotillo Golf Resort in Chandler, Arizona where he has been instrumental in managing this 27 hole championship course. 

From 2003 to 2008 Tim was the General Manager of Arizona’s finest private resort club the Seville Golf and Country Club. There he provided the leadership of daily operations which included a private golf membership, private sports club, public restaurants and banquet space. His team consisted of 180 associates.

 At the Greystone Golf and Country Club in Birmingham, Alabama Tim served as the Membership Marketing Director responsible for overseeing all membership as sales and club marketing activities for a membership of 750 members of this private equity country club.

Tim attended University of Auburn where he majored in marketing.