Main Street Cabernet Sauvignon (2009)

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We are having a typical Wednesday night. We both worked hard today and the weather was cold, gray and messy. Comfort food was needed. I made this spicy beef/noodle casserole along with my usual green salad. We are having this California Cabernet. (I know. It seems that we only drink Cabernet these days. It is definitely my absolute favorite.) Tom says, “to me, this is such a pleasant wine. Dark fruit, dry. . .a tiny bit of caramel and sweetness, but still, extremely drinkable.” So there you go. It is good and it is comforting.

Penfolds Koonunga Hill Shiraz Cabernet

We are under a winter storm warning so I made this chicken, white bean spicy chili for our dinner. I forgot to take a picture of our dinner at the table, which was in the bowl with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of fresh cilantro, but this picture of the chili in the pot will do. The soup was delicious and hot and the wine is big enough to stand up to and complement the meal. It was fun to watch the giant snowflakes outside tonight. They were huge! A very cozy night for spicy chili and a big wine.

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Red Belly Black Shiraz

Dinner for one tonight. . .I poured myself a glass of this Shiraz, which we opened last night (and, didn’t finish, which is a bit unusual!). I sipped my wine while I made a delicious sautéed shrimp with lemon and garlic, angel hair pasta, broccoli and a salad. It felt a lot more hectic making dinner without Tom here to tend to Trigger. Sadly, Trigger is now elderly and quirky. She has a lot of urgent needs that keep us on the alert. Anyway, for the moment she is contented so I will start cleaning up the kitchen so I can relax. This wine is one of my favorite and I have blogged about it before so I have nothing new to say about it. In a nutshell, I find it to be quite luscious and smooth with a tangy plummy flavor.

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The Boxer Oak-Aged Durif

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It is my birthday and I stayed home because I was coming down with a cold. So, I made a pot of chicken soup and a loaf of bread for dinner. It really hit the spot and soothed my sore throat. I opened this bottle of Australian wine and really like it. I honestly have never heard of Durif so I need to do some research and learn about it. I like it very much, it is fruity and bold with some pepper and oak on the finish. Tomorrow is Tom’s birthday and we plan to go out to celebrate. But tonight, chicken soup did the trick.

Nine Stones Shiraz

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It is Sunday night and Tom is packing for a business trip so I picked out a nice wine for our before-he-leaves night. This is so interesting. When I first poured the wine, I found it to be incredibly subtle with a velvety texture and soft tannins. But, now, after dinner has been eaten and the dishes washed, the wine has opened up and changed quite dramatically. No longer subtle, it is fruity, tannic and intense. Delicious.

For dinner I made baked pasta with steamed broccoli. I also needed to use up some milk so I made a baked brown rice pudding with lots of custardy filling with cinnamon and nutmeg.

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!

Estancia Cabernet Sauvignon (2008)

Tonight we are having this very delicious Estancia California Cabernet 2008 from Paso Robles. We have neglected our blog lately because our schedules have just been hectic — something had to give and the blog took the hit. It’s Wednesday — a reason to celebrate — we are half way through the work week.

I bought this wine last night on the way home from work at World Market for $13.99. Yummy, it is delicious. Very intense and juicy flavors with a strong finish. This is my kind of wine. We chose this to go with our dinner of beef stew that I made on Monday with an arm roast from our local farmer. This was my best stew ever — just bursting with rich and savory flavors.

Savanha Pinotage/Shiraz (2008)

This South African blend of Pinotage and Shiraz is our choice for this hot summer Friday night. This is a spicy, plummy, bold-flavored wine that is an impeccable choice to accompany our sausage-red potato-cabbage skillet dinner. I particularly appreciate the finish — velvety, spicy and crisp. Here’s to a fun summer weekend!

LeGrand Pinot Noir (2008)

Our neighbors, Brad & Michelle, brought us this wine a couple weeks ago when we had a cookout in our back yard. I chose it tonight to go with our dinner of grilled salmon. (Thank you to Jim at Merry Hill Farm, who shared with me his recipe.)

This wine is delicious and it is the perfect choice for our fish dinner. This French Pinot has a black sheep on the label because it claims it doesn’t follow the herd. Obviously not! I find this to be a softer and more succulent Pinot than I am accustomed to with a nose of violets and cherries. The  tannins are smooth and velvety with a finish of fruit and spice.

A nice way to end a beautiful summer day. I ran 10 miles and Tom worked on installing a storm/screen door. I think he had the harder job, today!

Luzon Jumilla Spain (2007)

luzon-jumilla-2007I stopped at the Plum Market in Ann Arbor on my way home from work tonight. I bought one large bag of groceries, mostly produce. But, of course, I slithered by the wine aisles to see what looked interesting. I bought two bottles, one of which we are tasting tonight.

This Spanish beauty Luzon Jumilla 2007 is 65% Monastrell and 35% Syrah. The color is inky with a violet rim. The aroma is spice and cherries with a bit of freshly ground peppercorns. The taste is refreshing and crisp, bursting with cranberries, plums, and mild spice. The tannins are subtle  but balanced. The finish is a curious combination of spice, tobacco, and thyme.This is quite a find! It was on sale at the Plum Market for $6.97. (I also purchased a $40 bottle on sale for $19; can’t wait to try it!)

For dinner tonight, I made a dinner from the groceries I picked up at the market: a steak stir fry with steak, asparagus, and cherry tomatoes (marinated in olive oil, cracked salt, and pepper), served over penne pasta and fresh beets, which I steamed for one hour (during cocktail hour, natch). It was delicious! Now, I am waiting for our son Tommy to come and eat the leftovers! He usually does a pretty thorough job! 🙂