Mas Donis Barrica Old Vines (2007)

It’s Monday night and I have had such a wonderful day. First, I’m on vacation. Second, I got a lot done, starting with a 6-mile run this morning. But, most importantly, both of our sons are home today! Tony, who came home from a 9-month trip around South America and Tommy, who came home to see his little brother! It’s been so much fun. They both just left the house to play basketball at their old junior-high basketball courts while Tom & I relax, read the paper and enjoy this lovely wine. I bought this wine at Baxter’s in Ann Arbor. The owner recommended it to me. This purple Mas Donis Barrica Old Vines is a blend of 85% Grenache (from an historic vineyard) and 15% Syrah. The nose has a piquant blend of cloves, ambrosial flavors with a fruity finish.The only thing I didn’t like about this wine is the label, which is silly of me. . .

Don Elias Garnacha (2008)

This Spanish wine was cultivated in an area of Spain known for its low production capacity. This  results in an intensely-flavored wine. My first sip was quite intense — it was verging on bubbly. However, with time to breathe, the bubbly intensity has dissipated and what is evident is a tasty mixture of fruit, wood and thyme. The finish is spicy.

A delicious choice for our Tuesday night. For dinner, I am reheating the bean soup that I made this weekend. We also have a half loaf of the whole wheat bread that I baked on Sunday. A very easy, yet comforting, dinner for a very cold winter evening.

Prestige Cotes du Rhone (2007)

prestige-pont-du-rhone-dotes-du-rhone-2007It is Sunday night and we are relaxing with a glass of wine. Trigger is next to me, the Christmas tree is lit and the Boze is playing a lovely relaxing CD. I have a roast simmering on the stove with potatoes and carrots peeled, washed and ready to put in the pot.

Tom chose this Prestige Cotes du Rhone 2007, a French blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre, for our evening. This has a pretty high alcohol content — 14% — but the taste is not at all hot or alcoholic.  The nose is lushly floral. The palate is chocolate and spice, while the finish is gentle with notes of bitter chocolate and vanilla. This is going to be a great accompaniment to our pot roast dinner. I think this wine is wonderful. . .I hope that we have more, and I think we do!

La Ferme Julien Côtes Du Ventoux (2006)

la-ferme-julien-cotes-du-ventoux-2006I am finishing the bottle of this La Ferme Julien Côtes Du Ventoux 2006, a French blend, tonight. This red is a blend of 50% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 15% Carignan, and 15% Cinsault. I already blogged about this last night but I wanted to add my comments for the second night after it had spent some time breathing. (You can see my comments last night when it was freshly uncorked.)

In the glass it is dark violet. On the nose are scents of berries, spice, and pepper. This is full-bodied, fruit-filled wine with plenty of bright fruit and spice. This is one of the wines that Tom bought at Trader Joe’s for a very reasonable price; this is an excellent value. I would purchase this again in a minute.

I have leftovers in the oven because I have so many! Tonight is leftover potatoes and carrots (from the pot roast dinner) and leftover ribs (from last night). I have also made a fresh salad.

La Ferme Julien Côtes Du Ventoux (2006)

la-ferme-julien-cotes-du-ventoux-2006Tom chose this La Ferme Julien Côtes Du Ventoux 2006 from France for this Sunday evening. This red is a blend of 50% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 15% Carignan, and 15% Cinsault. Fairly low in tannin, Cinsault is grown abundantly in France and used to blend with other grapes. The Cinsault has great perfume and supple texture and is often used to offset the harshness of the Carignan.

We have had a good weekend and tonight we can hear sleet hitting the windows. Winter has arrived in Michigan. For dinner I am preparing two slabs of pork ribs. I started by mixing a rub of chili powder, brown sugar, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper on the ribs and letting them rest for an hour on the counter. Then I covered them with foil and put them in the oven at 300 for an hour; then took off the foil for an hour. Then I prepared my own barbecue sauce by sauteing onions and garlic and adding chili powder, cayenne pepper, catsup, molasses, cider vinegar, spicy mustard, and worcestershire sauce . . . and then I smothered the ribs in the sauce and put them back in the oven and that is where they are now. They need to continue to cook for an hour and half. So by the time they are done they will be succulent and tender. The ribs have been an all-afternoon undertaking — very fun, comforting, and cozy.

This wine is perfect for tonight’s dinner.