Tenuta Curezza (2008)

Happy Saturday! It was a beautiful sunny and cold day in Michigan. I started my day with a 7-mile run with my friends, Jeanie & Chris. It was 10-degrees but because the sun was shining, it didn’t seem too cold; the snow was sparkly and it was a fun run. The rest of the day was relaxing. . .lovely. I did a little crochet, read my novel, snoozed on the couch, walked Trigger.

For dinner, I made a double batch of meatballs, using one pound of ground beef and one pound of ground turkey. I froze half of them for another night. The other half has been simmering in a spicy tomato sauce for our dinner tonight.

I have been saving this bottle of wine because it was a gift to me from a very special person. Amy Watkins gave me this bottle of wine on the last day of our class in December. Amy is a highly-intelligent and dedicated teacher who just finished her Master’s degree. My class was her final one in the program. I so enjoyed reading Amy’s papers and her final research project. What a special young woman! I had Amy two times during her master’s program and she was pregnant both times! Now that is dedication!

I chose this Italian wine to go with our Italian dinner tonight. It is scrumptious. I can see why Amy liked it so much. The color is bright purple with an abundance of fruit flavors and some pepper on the nose. Full-bodied, I can taste cherry coke and blackberries on the palate. The finish is long with minerals and spice. This is luscious and such a treat for our Saturday evening.

Thank you, Amy Watkins! I love the wine and I loved having you as a student.

Tom: This is a really nice red wine from the Salento peninsula, the heel of Italy. It has a big dark-fruit taste and nice dry tannins. This is very good as a sipping wine and will be great with spaghetti. Italian wines (at least the modest ones we drink) sometimes seem stingy on fruit to me, but this one is big and rich.

We heard from Tony today: he’s now staying in Montañita, Ecuador, and learning to surf.

Fortium Salice Salentino (2005)

fortium-salice-salentino-2005It is a Saturday night and we are having a relaxing evening together. I chose this Italian red wine, Fortium Salice Salentino 2005, to accompany our dinner tonight. This is a surprise! We are accustomed to Italian red wines to being rather austere and musty. But this is everything but! The wine is made from grapes by the name of Negro Amaro (black bitter), Malvaisa Nera di Brindisi, and Malvasia Nera di Lecce. The Negro Amaro is responsible for producing one of the most popular, low-priced Italian table wines in the United States (thanks, Karen MacNeil, for this information). The wine is surprisingly fruity; it was almost off-putting to me at first taste, but with some air I warmed up to the taste (although I prefer a wine that is a bit drier and less fruity than this one). This is very fruity with lots of vanilla and spice. The texture is rather creamy. If you like Australian red wines, you will like this one.

Earlier today I went out for a run but discovered the roads were so slippery from a snowfall of about 5 inches. The snow plows had come through and the result was extremely slippery, sticky snow. The snow stuck to the bottom of my shoes, making ice skates . . .after 1 mile and several scary moments where I almost fell, I realized it was too treacherous. So I drove to the Wellness Center and made myself do 6.5 miles on the treadmill. Oh, misery! I do not like running on treadmills but I was due for 7.5 miles today. Somehow,  I played mind games and got it done.

For dinner tonight, I am making pork chops and small potatoes. Something I have recently discovered is that pork chops benefit from brining. So I brined these and am now cooking them in a hot cast-iron skillet with a bit of olive oil. These will be very brown and crunchy on the outside. I am also simmering small, yellow (organic) potatoes in chicken broth. I need to get up and make a vegetable . . . we’ll see how we like this dinner tonight. I’ll report back tomorrow!  Cheers!