Hayman & Hill Cabernet Sauvignon (2007)

A large group of us, together for the next several days for meetings, had dinner at a great steak place last evening in Indianapolis. We chose this Napa Valley Cab to go with our mainly steak-focused dinners. We started the meal with shrimp cocktail that was unbelievably wonderful. The wallop from the horseradish was both delicious and momentarily shocking as it worked its way through the range of tasting mechanisms. Then the steaks arrived, hot and sizzling, tender and tasty. I had mine with sauteed mushrooms with a side of spinach. The wine was a good choice due its bold taste and firm structure. Surprisingly, we did not finish the second bottle so I put the cork back in and carried it back to my hotel room; I look forward to a glass tonight when our meetings end.

Grande Reserve de Gassac (2009)

A dreary day in Michigan with gray skies and rain. . .and a Monday. Ucky. I felt low on energy all day. But, the work day ended and now we are home together and everything is AOK.  I had nothing planned for dinner tonight but threw together a few stray ingredients: a lone chicken breast from the freezer, a pint of fresh pea pods from the vegetable co-op, a bunch of fresh asparagus, a fresh tomato from the co-op, some basil and freshly grated parmesan cheese. I did a quick stir fry of the chicken and vegetables and tossed with thin spaghetti, olive oil and parmesan cheese and it was delicious. The trick was not to overcook the pea pods. Their fresh crunch added just the right touch.

We had this colorful meal with this French Grande Reserve de Gassac 2009, which is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah. Smooth and easy-to-drink with a sharply-pungent finish. This would  go very well with a chocolate brownie, which is waiting for us if we choose to indulge.

Stag’s Leap Artemis Cabernet Sauvignon (2007)

My friend and colleague, Steve Nordwall, gave me this bottle of Stag’s Leap Artemis Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 after we discovered that we shared a love of big red wines. I saved it for a very special occasion and tonight was the night.

I opened this wine about 45 minutes before we were ready so that it could breathe. Meanwhile, I was preparing to saute fresh mushrooms (from the food co-op), while baking au gratin potatoes and setting the table (with fresh flowers). The wine is exquisite. Inky black with legs like I have never seen before. The nose gave a preview of what was to come . . . as did the color in the glass. The taste: an explosion of flavor while the texture — the sensation in the mouth — substantive and all consuming.  This is not fruity; it is a taste of the forest. I just do not know any other way to describe it.

Such a special and wonderful wine for a very special evening. Happy anniversary, love of my life!