Rosati Barbaresco (2004)

Rosati Barbaresco 2004I just finished the bottle of this Italian Rosati Barbaresco wine. (I blogged about it yesterday if you would like to read my tasting notes.)

What I want to blog about tonight is my wonderful group of students who finished their last class in their Master of Educational Leadership program tonight. I am so proud of them. They are dedicated educators and have spent the last two years of their lives taking night classes and conducting a research study. This class was their last class where they (all but three — who are still working feverishly!)  handed in their final research report (and did an oral presentation on their findings). Congratulations to Linka, Tammy, Corrie, Richard, Yolanda, Denelle, Christian, Kristie, Mary & Eric!

Before class, I had put together a pot roast (I browned a chuck roast in hot oil, then added fresh garlic cloves, chopped onions, red wine and chicken broth and then covered it and put it in the oven at 225-degrees). By the time I came home from class, the meat was fork tender. I added potatoes and carrots to the roast while we had our cocktail and read the paper. By the time we were done reading the paper, everything was tender and delicious.

Cheers to the new Masters! Clink!

Rosati Barbaresco (2004)

Rosati Barbaresco 2004It is a Monday evening and Tom opened this wine to celebrate! Celebrate what (you may ask)? Well, we’re celebrating the fact that Tom finally figured out why our newly-installed (by him) ceiling fan was making noise. We were getting to the point where we were saying “This fan is really nice. We just can’t use it at night because it keeps us awake.” It clicked and rattled. But, he thinks he has it fixed, now. So, cheers to a quiet ceiling fan!

I purchased this wine because it was “discontinued” and on sale. The regular price for this wine is $40 but it was on sale for $19. So, I wanted to see what a $40 bottle of wine tasted like. Here are my tasting notes:

The color is cherry red (not inky black like many of the wines that I like). The nose is floral and sweet. On the palate, the wine has a velvety texture with not a lot of body (typical old-world Italian, in my opinion). The taste is woody with magnificent tannins. This is a delicious wine and I like it very much. I am glad I was able to try it; I wouldn’t have purchased it at its regular price of $40.

The weather has cooled off a bit since our latest heat wave, so I am making spaghetti for dinner. This wine will complement our dinner perfectly. Can’t wait to fall asleep under our quiet fan. . .

Monasterio de Santa Cruz (2008)

This is a Spanish wine that recently arrived at our house as part of a wine club shipment. This wine is made in the region of Tarragona on the Mediterranean, near Barcelona.

I chose this wine for our summer Sunday night dinner. This is a deep red, delectable and elaborate big red. The texture is smooth and the finish is woody.

I didn’t know what to expect from this wine because the label did not reveal any grapes or varietal for which I was familiar. Well, is is sumptuous. This is a complex wine with layers of fruit and oak.

I didn’t feel like grocery shopping today so I took  two steaks out of the freezer. We grilled those and I made steamed brown rice and sauteed mushrooms (in Malbec wine) and a salad from my garden (with my homemade viniagrette [olive oil, red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, horseradish mustard, basil, oregano, rosemary, savory & thyme]). Dinner was delicious and the wine was a perfect match for a steak.

Opi Malbec (2008)

Tom chose this lusciously delicious Argentinian Malbec for our Friday evening. Malbec happens to be one of my favorite all-time reds and this one does not disappoint.  The color is deep and opaque and the nose makes me think of ripe, concord grapes. The taste is sumptuous: dark chocolate, plums and pepper. I am enjoying this wine very much.

For dinner tonight, I made homemade tacos. We haven’t had them for a long time and I had a pound of ground beef to use. I browned the ground beef and added onions and peppers and pinto beans, along with cumin, oregano, and  chili pepper. The toppings included chopped avocados, chopped onions, chopped lettuce (yes, of course from my garden), shredded cheese, sour cream and salsa.

A fun meal for a fun, Friday night!

Stone Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon (2007)

It is a steaming hot Wednesday evening in Michigan. The temperature outside is in the high 80’s (although in the sun, our temperature says 114-degrees). It is beautiful, though. Green & lush. . .

Tom chose this California Cabernet for our dinner tonight — I think because it is midweek and so we are having an everyday type of wine. He purchased two of these bottles for $10 at our local grocery store and we both are enjoying it (I believe this is our second bottle and I had blogged about it previously). The taste is overwhelmingly blackberries along with some earthy flavors (I’m thinking  rich, black dirt). This is definitely a fruit-bomb kind of wine.

Tonight we will grill some burgers, which I have stuffed with bleu cheese and cracked pepper. I have also harvested some fresh lettuce and green onions from the garden and I will make a salad.  (As I write this, I am wondering if Tammy will read this and take my recommendation for her celebratory trip to Niagara Falls. . . you go, girl!)

This wine is perfect for a mid-week meal of grilled burgers and salad. Cheers!

Forbes Creek Cabernet Sauvignon (2007)

This is our second bottle of California Forbes Creek Cabernet Sauvignon (from our 4Seasons wine club). It is a Monday evening and we are grilling marinated pork loin chops on the grill. It is so gorgeous outside tonight! I love Michigan summers! I have to say, this is quickly becoming one of my favorite wines. I love this one. It has everything I love in a wine: Big flavor, fruity but not sweet, dry with plenty of black pepper (and a little oak) on the finish. Absolute yummyness.

Stone Cellars by Beringer Cabernet Sauvignon (2007)

Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers reading this today. Here we are, the first day of summer and the longest day of the year. It was a hot and sunny beautiful day.

We chose this California Stone Cellars tonight (following an icy gin & tonic) to go with our dinner. This wine was on sale  at our local grocery store (2 bottles for $10) and what a value. The wine is a  concentration of summery ripe berries and a bit of dark earth. This is a good summer wine to enjoy while reclining in a hammock, watching the sky and  feeling the breeze!

For dinner, I brined chicken in saltwater and then made a barbecue marinade. I put everything (minus the brine) in a ziplock bag for the afternoon. Now, we are grilling the chicken and I am making a salad from lettuce and onions from my garden along with cucumbers and avocado from the store. I will also make potatoes and a vegetable. I want to be sure Tom has a great Father’s Day meal!

Beringer Cabernet Sauvignon (2005)

Home from a conference in Orlando. My flight was delayed due to serious thunderstorms so I am just getting home here at 10:00 p.m. and having a glass of this Cabernet. It’s good! How’s that for a blog entry? It’s also very good to be home to good old Michigan where the nights are cool and the air is fresh. . .

Forbes Creek Cabernet Sauvignon (2007)

We received four bottles of this California Forbes Creek Cabernet Sauvignon in our 4Seasons wine club shipment. I opened a bottle tonight; a beautiful summer June evening. It is just delicious. I am very glad to know there are three bottles remaining! This is very easy-to-drink with  flavors of ripe fruit, black pepper and a hint of tobacco. There is a subtle touch of oak on the finish. This is delightful! Tom & I had no problem finishing the bottle.

For dinner, I had planned on making stir fry. Tom volunteered to grill the steak, so instead of stir-frying the steak, we grilled it. I first marinated the steak in a marinade of olive oil, red-wine vinegar, salt & pepper and spicy mustard. While the steak was grilling, I made a salad (with lettuce from our garden, red & yellow peppers, avocados and cucumbers); I also cooked a pot of penne pasta. Then, I sauteed asparagus in hot oil along with chopped garlic tops (the green stem that grows up from the garlic bulb). I tossed the asparagus and garlic tops with the penne pasta along with olive oil and fresh ground salt & pepper to accompany the grilled steak and the salad. It was just delicious. And, the California Cab was perfect with this meal.

Il Papavero

We have had this Italian red table wine, Il Papavero, before and really enjoyed it. This is delightful; a juicy cherry-flavored  quaff; dark and spicy with ripe fruit and chocolate.

For dinner tonight, I am making baked, spicy chicken, steamed brown rice and vegetables. I also baked some brownies with chopped walnuts. Tom was craving my brownies. . .

We both had busy weeks. Tom was in Montreal on business and I was up north to see my folks and to watch our son, Tommy, play his bass guitar in The Ben Daniels Band at “The Loading Dock” in Traverse City. My 77-year-old mother came with me to the bar; the band started playing at 11:00 p.m. and my mom was as lively as can be. What fun!

I am missing our youngest son, Tony. Hurry home, Tones!