The staff at David's Window Washing has the enviable task of serving San Diego County, where year-round sunshine ensures there's no shortage of sliding glass doors and floor-to-ceiling windows in need of squeegeeing. Nonetheless, the team makes itself amenable to sudsy needs of all sorts, clearing dirt from interior and exterior windows, screens, and mirrors smudged by one too many attempts to visit Wonderland.
The big sky above The Ranch at Bandy Canyon has watched over nearly 150 years of homesteading history, stretching back to John D. Bandy, who staked his claim in 1870. Having undergone a multimillion-dollar restoration, the main lodge boasts two kitchens equipped with antique stoves, three patios warmed by open-air fireplaces, and rustic ceiling beams repurposed from the original San Diego pier. Its terraced landscape often hosts wedding ceremonies as well. Further along, the Ranch sprawls across 144 trail-laced acres, providing a well-maintained stomping ground for human, horse, and tumbleweed alike. Country cottages dot the land as well, granting visitors a spot to lay their hats, and a pool helps wash off the lather of a day on the trails.
Like his father, the former governor of the Argentinian state of Mendoza, Alejandro Orfila chose a life of diplomacy. From 1946 until the early 80s, his various public service roles included Argentine Minister Plenipotentiary to the United States and Argentine Ambassador to Japan. But like his grandfather, a winemaker whose 1905-established winery stands to this day, Alejandro harbored a lifelong love of viticulture. In 1994, Alejandro finally pursued that passion by founding Orfila Vineyards & Winery, a 70-acre hillside estate nestled within a 10,000-acre agricultural preserve in the San Pasqual Valley.
These days, winemaker Justin Mund oversees production on the estate, where grapes grow only 15 miles from the Pacific Ocean. Using both the estate's grapes and others from the California coast, Justin crafts wines that have earned more than 1,300 medals in national and international competitions since the winery's founding. Guests can sample said wines in a tasting room overlooking the estate, as well as a second located at the Wynola Farms Marketplace in Julian. Besides tastings, Orfila hosts events ranging from live concerts to the annual Grape Stomp festival, where folks gather to watch traditional wine-making and grapes gather to hold their annual Shirley Jackson-esque lottery.
The culinary team at the upscale bistro Café Merlot shows curious cooks how to whip up special recipes and pick palate-pleasing wines in a welcoming, hands-on environment. Owners Toni and Rick Kraft, chef Daniel Reynolds, and sous chef Stella Midori-Mokofski will make a meal materialize before your eyes, demonstrating their innovative techniques in culinary crafting and their penchant for magic. Chef Daniel, with a degree from the San Diego Culinary Institute, has helped transform the vineyard-based bistro into an impressive, inventive dining experience. Learn some of his gastronomical tricks and apply them to your next dinner party or supervillain bake sale during your chosen three-hour session.
Martinizing Dry Cleaning has the support of a franchise that has been cleaning clothes for more than 60 years. They inspect each garment a minimum of six times before cleaning them, allowing them to seek out even the tiniest blemishes on items such as blouses, suits, shirts, and pants. They also specialize in household items ranging from bedspreads and cushions to drapes, napkins, and sleeping bags. Same-day service, as well as pickup and delivery, is available upon request.
A lifelong artist, Davina Mendoza helps her students discover self-expression and self-confidence through the act of painting. During fun two-hour sessions, she takes them step-by-step through the re-creation of a single piece of art, teaching the necessary techniques for them to start painting on their own. Classes may focus on a Van Gogh–like abstraction of water or a Hawaiian sunset. She serves appetizers during each session and invites her students to bring their favorite grown-up beverages, such as bottles of wine or juice boxes that feature adult situations or strong language. Davina recently appeared on UTTV to demonstrate the therapeutic possibilities of art and creativity.