About five years ago, following the release of Sideways, author Rex Pickett visited JUSTIN as our honored guest. He had the complete JUSTIN experience – dinner in Deborah’s Room, a night at the JUST Inn, and a book signing in the barrel chai. His first experience with us inspired him to incorporate our property into his new novel Vertical, the sequel to Sideways. This past weekend, Rex and his assistant, Todd, visited us for another book signing, this time for Vertical, and also attended our annual ISOSCELES Pre-Release Dinner as our Guest of Honor.
In Vertical, characters Miles and Jack spend a wild night at the JUST Inn. I won’t spoil any details, but I will tell you that each and every JUSTIN employee’s mouth dropped when we heard what Miles and Jack got into. Knowing that Miles is based on Rex himself, I wasn’t sure what to expect from Rex, but he turned out to be charming - a perfect gentleman.
Rex and Todd arrived on Friday afternoon after driving up from Malibu and doing an interview for our local radio station, Krush 92.5 (click to listen). That evening, after getting settled in to the JUST Inn, they joined 45 of our Wine Society members for a book signing and dinner in the barrel chai. Rex was our guest of honor, and diners enjoyed a “Vertical” (ha) of ISOSCELES with their main course, a 24-hour braised short rib.
The next morning, Rex set up in the barrel chai once again, this time to sign books for members who attended our ISOSCELES Pre-Release Party that day. Rex was incredibly gracious and genuinely interested in chatting it up with each of his fans – he spent many minutes with each of them, answering their questions and writing funny inscriptions in their copies of Vertical. The fans enjoyed passed hors d’oeuvres and sips of our new 2008 ISOSCELES while they chatted with Rex.
The JUSTIN staff was thrilled with Rex and we’re secretly hoping that we will soon be arranging for a movie crew to come shoot some Vertical shenanigans in the Sussex Suite (just so I don’t start any rumors – no movie sequel is confirmed, yet!). We are all looking forward to Rex’s next project, as well as the next visit from the author and his assistant.
To read Rex’s blog post about his time at JUSTIN, click here.
To read Todd’s account of the weekend, click here.
Visit our tasting room to purchase a signed copy of Vertical, or buy online here.
Photos: Joseph Dominguez Photography