A Gentlemen’s Tale This here’s a story about three distinguished gentlemen, Jim, Jack, and Johnny. Now, these three gentlemen come from very well bred families, that have all been in business together for years. Their fathers had developed one of the most distinguished firms this side of the Atlantic. While this was all fine and dandy for the rest of the clan, with their siblings following in the footsteps of their fathers. These three had the trailblazer bug flowing through their veins. In their youth there were likened to Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn. Very adventurous and high spirited lads indeed. Hunting, fishing, and just plain enjoying the outdoors had become second nature to them. Don’t get me wrong they too had great heads for business. Just not the ones their fathers had set up for them. Instead, our three heroes had paired there love of the outdoors and it’s many wonders with their business sense and came up with three distinct and wonderful products. Some of the finest known to man. But, all work and no play just doesn’t suit these three and so they decided to take a weekend trip to Malibu’s Knob Creek and do a little hunting, maybe some fishing too. Knob Creek as you might imagine is a picturesque resort area, but not like the one you might figure to find three business type gentlemen in. Oh no, there were no suit and tie how-do-you-do types here. This was a casual, rough and ready, come as you are type of place. Nope, nothing fancy about this spot, as for our heroes, well they fit right in. It was well known for it’s creeks and valleys. All these lead down from the main mountain range to the ocean on which the resort accessorized the shore line. A lake that sat nestled high up in the mountains, fed the main river that had just enough branches comin’ off of it to look like a bad Christmas tree. Each branch seeming to have forged their own little valley. As if the creeks were each laying claim to there own section of land. Complete with fishing hole and frog pond. There must have been about three or four branches off the main river that were deep enough for fishing. If you follow them back up the valleys to the mountains they lead to some remote sites that are great hunting grounds. Now, it took them most of the first day to get there, and since it was almost dinner time and the sun was starting to give way to the moon and the starlit sky, they decided the hunting and fishing would wait until early morning. One of the reasons they liked coming to this particular spot was the Friday night BBQ. An open invite to all campers and cabin goers to set around the fire and have themselves a meal fit for a king. A messy king, but a king just the same. The one person that made this BBQ great, was Chef Porter. Chef Porter was a master of the bbq grill. He owns a couple of restaurants, including the one our boys are at now, and the food is ‘pretty damn good’ just ask him. With a grin and a chuckle he’d be more than happy to agree. What a feast it was, they dined on ribs, pulled pork, corn on the cob grilled right in it’s husks, and homemade slaw. Let us not forget the fresh berry tarts for dessert. Everyone was sure the chef’s wife Gin must have made them, she was known throughout the countryside for her baking skills. With a couple of after dinner drinks under their belts, our heroes decided to retire for the evening. So, they meandered back to their cabin, Hennessey’s cabin. All the cabins around here had been named for the family that supposedly built it back in the early 1700’s. That there is a whole ‘nother story for a whole ‘nother night. As our three adventurers drifted off for the evening they were all planning out the next day in their heads. They are going to have to get an early start to get to the best fishing spot. The road they were gonna take only shoots down about a couple of miles or so. After that it is get out and walk territory. If it seems the roads that line this mountain cut off a little prematurely, that’s because they do, and it ain‘t no accident. Almost as if the people that put them in didn’t want it to be too easy to access the back woods. It’s like they are telling ya ‘If you don’t want to earn your spot your not getting in’, and that’s the way our trio liked it. When the alarm went off at three a.m. Jack was already up making coffee. Jim and Johnny arose to the smell of breakfast. They may have teased Jack about his simpleton food, but it was duly noted they had no trouble downing their share. By four o’clock they were off and running to their favorite spot. It’s a place that, like I said earlier, is pretty well secluded. They were going to drive about a mile due south, two miles up through Sutter’s ravine, and then they will have to pack the rest of the way in. The trio is headed off to a little known fishing hole that is usually filled to the gills, if you will, with trout. The fishin’ turned out to be a little slow today. It seems our happy-go-lucky pals couldn’t agree on the best bait to use, should they use a lure…. I could be wrong, but it seemed to me they spent more time figuring out what to put on the poles, than their poles spent in the water. Well, after about four or five hours of sittin’ on the shoreline jaws flappin’ about everything from sports, something they never agree on, to work, supposedly a taboo subject when they’re out here. The three decided they would probably have better luck with the hunting. Jim did manage to land one good sized fish. But, that definitely was not going to be enough to feed these three. They may not have been able to agree on what bait to use, but they definitely agreed that hunting like fishing was better with an early start. So they decided to spend some time scoping out the best place to set up for tomorrow’s hunt. I’m guessing it took them a bit to find just the right spot. Not an easy find, pretty much made their own trail getting there, but like I said before that’s what they liked. The last thing our boys wanted was to land a spot where you had thirty guns pointing at three geese. So they figured this would be just as good a place as any. Our boys went back to the truck, and devoured their lunch. That’s when they decided they would need to supplement the one fish Jim caught for dinner. So, with plenty of time in the day they tripped on over to Beringer Farms. Johnny’s cousins Ezra and Hiram managed the farm, and they saw this as a good opportunity to visit with family and pick up some groceries at the same time. Besides it was just a little after one o’clock, there was plenty of time left in the day. Hiram is an office kind of guy he takes care of the buying and selling of products that they don’t grow themselves. He’s the one that brings all the canned goods, frozen products, and let’s not forget the best wine, sipping whiskey, oh those flavored schnapps they carry. I believe the boys were getting thirsty. Ezra is the get in there and get your hands dirty type. Even though they have enough hands working there, he does his share of the planting and harvesting of the veggies they farm. As you pull into Beringer Farms you’ll notice it is actually a ranch. It has a full complement of veggies, with a small grove of fruit trees off to the side. They also had plenty of livestock cows, chickens, pigs…and…it has it’s own slaughter house. With the only butchers they have being the four Frangelico Brothers, there were times it was tough keeping up with the demand. However, the freshness and the quality were sound enough to keep the people happy and returning. Needless to say by the time our boys got there the meats were gone for the week. That didn’t matter to them though, as I said earlier, they came to chat up old Ezra and Hiram. After a couple of glasses of fine wine, and a couple hours of conversation the boys headed to the truck. Jack and Johnny started to look around. Where the heck is Jim? Then they heard a shout coming from the direction of the market. As they turned their heads to look, they could see Jim with an armful a grocery bags. They noticed one of the bags had a unique bottle of wine poking out of the top. Johnny was kind enough to grab that one, lord knows nobody wants him dropin’ this one.” Jim agreed he told the guys that particular bottle came highly recommended by Mrs. Brooks, Ezra’s wife. She said this will go great with the fish they caught. They said their good-byes to the cousins and headed back to the cabin. Approximately an hour’s drive, they’d arrive back between 4:30 and 5 o’clock. Fix a little dinner, and then spend the rest of the evening mingling with the other cabin goers. It was Johnny’s turn to do the morning duties, and whereas they didn’t get up quite as early as yesterday, they were still out the door before sun-up. Getting to the blinds they set up was going to be a bit more of a hike than yesterday’s fishing excursion. This time they packed their lunch with them, because they planned on being there past noon. Despite less conversation and more concentration, the hunting wasn’t much better than the fishing, however, they did manage to bag themselves a Grey Goose or two. So they made their way back down Sutter’s ravine on the mountain path they cut. As they worked there way back through Chivas woods to the truck, they tried to decide what they were going to do with the birds. Once the boys got to the truck it struck them. With the veggies and the vino they had left from their excursion to the market, they would make some Southern Comfort stew. As our three gentlemen got back to the cabin, they noticed Jose and Camarena had rented the cabin next door. Being of good acquaintance with this couple, they decided to invite them over for dinner. This is a shrewd move on the part of the boys. Jose is a terrific chef and Camarena is a great baker. They knew that she never comes on these trips without bringing some of her signature desserts. The night was spent trading Jose and Camarena’s skills, with the boys noses for business, great wines,and I might add, their appetites. It turned out to be a howlin’ good time. The following morning they all met up with their friend Sam Adams and he led them to Bombay cove where they met Captain Morgan and set sail upon his vessel the Maker’s Mark. Now I know it is Monday and our three should be headed back to their respective offices. However, they are the bosses, they were all pretty business would be fine for a day without them. They traveled up the coastline past Alexander Valley, and Wallaby Creek into Viking Fjord and weighed anchor at Walnut Crest. Once there they hopped into the skip and headed ashore. Where they were met by guide extraordinaire Paul Mason. He then took them up Bailey’s ridge to Baron Philip De Rothschild’s estate. Once at the estate they feasted, Tanquerayed away the rest of the evening with the ladies, and a great time was had by all.