Hi! I'm Frances

Greetings from the last best place in Northern California wine country! Off-the-beaten track and proud of its authentic personality, Southern Sonoma County is home to an eclectic and vibrant community of artists, designers, inventors, foodies, farmers, wine, beer and cheese makers, green businesses, multi-generational families and creative newcomers. An unspoiled place that international chefs and tastemakers are calling the New Provence.

I'm a British American writer, living, working and raising a family here in the heart of this little Eden for the past 21 years. I've been blogging a daily slice of the pie for over five years, sharing the bounty of this quirky, compelling little region with readers from around the world.

Born and raised in the UK, I started my writing career as a rookie newspaper reporter in the wilds of rural Cambridgeshire. After all sorts of international exploits as a freelance newspaper and magazine journalist, publicist and columnist, I've long since considered myself officially settled here in Sonoma County. It's a place where the sun shines, wine and micro-brewed beer flow, real food grows, people are community minded and the general focus is on living a good life - healthy, wholesome and packed with simple pleasures.

My Anglo-Italian husband, Timo and I are the parents of three Sonoma-County-raised sons (two teens and the oldest is in his twenties). Together as a family hobby we tend our half acre of award-winning hillside Syrah grapes behind our home, making house wine each October in our back yard and garage.

I'm an avid consumer of NPR, PBS and BBC World news and views and international cultural connections. I love to step out of the wine country scene every now and again in my posts to share my take as an Anglophile on style and design, travel, quality tv drama, film, music, books...

I'm a taker of afternoon tea, a contemplator, traveler, keen home cook and community collaborator. Most of all, I'm a story teller.

Enjoy your virtual visit to Southern Sonoma Country and come back soon!

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