Conquista Malbec

Happy thanksgiving! We are having a wonderful time with our family! Bill and Linda from Wisconsin brought several bottles of wine including this Malbec from Argentina. Smoky chocolate taste with a silky finish. I thought it was the perfect complement to our traditional thanksgiving dinner.
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Finca el Origen Malbec (2009)

We had thick, juicy hamburgers on the grill for dinner tonight with dill pickles, spicy mustard, sliced tomatoes and Vidalia onions on toasted whole wheat hamburger buns. Very yummy. I stopped at the Plum Market on the way home from work tonight and picked up 6 bottles of wine, one of which was this Finca el Origen Malbec 2009. One of the traditional Bordeaux varietals, this wine has similarities to a big Cabernet Sauvignon and a smooth Merlot. The color is very deep. The taste is plummy with ample tannins. I bought this wine on sale for $9, which I believe is a very good value. I should have picked up more than one bottle.

H.J. Fabre Malbec (2009)

We chose this Argentine H. J. Fabre Malbec 2009 for Thursday evening cocktail hour. I have been so incredibly busy at work that I have been rather brain dead in the evenings and unwilling to blog even though we have had some lovely wines and meals this week. Tonight, however, i am going to blog. I am inspired because we received several lovely comments. Very motivating!

Tonight we have decided on pizza to give me a break. Even though i find preparing meals enjoyable and relaxing, tonight I just needed to sit in my chair and read the newspaper!

This Malbec is hearty and spicy. This is the perfect choice for pizza. The nose is delectable chocolate with hints of vanilla. The taste is rich with plums and oak. This would be a good choice to swerve with beef, too. Yum. Cheers!

Sterling Vintner’s Collection Meritage (2007)

It is Sunday evening and we have had the most beautiful autumn weather. I am in shorts and t-shirt! For us northerners, this is a big deal for October. Tom spent most of the day finishing staining our pergola in the back yard. What a happy day to have that finished. I did laundry, grocery shopping and cooking, plus I took some short bike rides to enjoy the pretty leaves, the fragrant air and the warm temperature. Now we are relaxing. We worked on the Friday Wall Street Journal crossword puzzle and made some progress.

Our dinner tonight is a chicken pot pie that I started cooking much earlier in the day. I purchased some inexpensive chicken (leg quarters) and stewed those this afternoon. Then I deboned and skinned the cooked chicken for my pot pie. I started by sauteing onions, celery, carrots and chunked (unpeeled) red potatoes in butter for about 10 minutes. I added flour and mixed well and added chicken broth and evaporated milk until thick and creamy, threw in the cooked chicken, salt and pepper and put in a casserole and covered with pie crust to bake for an hour.

Our upstairs stash of wine is dwindling so i went to the basement to get this Sterling Vintner’s Collection Meritage 2007. I don’t want to sound overly effusive but this is DELICIOUS!! I really love this. This combination of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec and Petit Verdot is just what i adore in a wine . . .chocolate, cherry, vanilla. . .but not sweet, just fruity and totally inviting and sumptuous.

Here’s to all of us that are going back to work tomorrow to give our best. Cheers!

Robert Mondavi Meritage (2008)

Here we are nearly at the end of our work week. It has been one week since my knee surgery and I am doing really well. I am not using crutches at all and I did some yoga during my noon hour. Can’t wait to run!

This Robert Mondavi Meritage 2008 is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot. Tom bought this today when he went to the grocery store for orange juice. (Tom is very good at checking out the wines when he stops at the market.) We are both enjoying this one veery much. It was $12 on sale for $10. It is complex with layers . . . on the palate is abundant dark fruit while the finish is a lovely combination of raspberries and blueberries. This is unusual but we don’t detect vanilla or caramel or spice. Just berries. Very pleasant and I would definitely purchase this again.

For dinner, I am making a dish that is both comforting and healthy. Our food co op started up this week so i needed to incorporate some of my healthy organic vegetables. First, I browned a pound of ground beef that is from a local cow! Wow. What a difference. Ground beef from a local farmer is so different than what you buy in a store. I added some chopped onion and celery and carrots (all from the co-op) and then added canned chopped tomatoes. After that simmered for awhile, I added chicken broth, fresh spinach and some elbow macaroni. And I am cooking some fresh beets. We should get our prescribed servings of vegetables.

All on all, a great cocktail hour and a delicious dinner.

Alma Andina Reserve Malbec (2008)

Well here we are . . . a Thursday night in the midst of a very busy work week. I have another big day tomorrow so I will be happy to see the weekend arrive.

I opened this big Alma Andina Malbec 2008 for our dinner tonight. This is a big, bold fruit-forward Argentine wine that is rich in vanilla-cherry flavors with a dark-chocolate finish. Our son, Tony, would like this wine. (I believe I have a very good feel for what he likes.) Tony spent time in Argentina and loved it.

For dinner we are having pot roast with potatoes, carrots, and onions. And I am making a fresh green salad with my homemade salad dressing. Lest you think I somehow managed to get this meal together after a 10-hour work day, I will admit that this meal is mainly leftovers from the weekend. But, delicious leftovers!

Sterling Vintner’s Collection Meritage (2007)

We are enjoying a lovely, July evening. Strangely, the sun is shining brightly, but it is raining. We are very happy to have the rain because we needed it badly. But it is odd to have the rain while the sky is seemingly clear.

Nonetheless, here we are enjoying the soft rain, windows open with a gentle breeze. I took advantage of the cooler evening to put a chicken casserole in the oven (a basic chicken and rice combo).

While completing our weekly “Wall Street Journal” crossword puzzle, we are enjoying this Sonoma, California blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec and Petit Verdot. The nose is subtle and takes awhile to reveal itself but with some decanting it offers chocolate and blackberries. The taste is a deliciously complex mix of fruit, spice, flowers and chocolate. Very yummy. This wine was $13.99 but on sale for 9.99, which is an excellent value. Had I paid the full price, I would have been satisfied but at this price it is a real find.

Cupcake Vineyards Malbec (2008)

Another lovely June evening in Michigan. Tonight is windy and cloudy but so nice for sitting on the patio and feeling the breeze and listening to the birds. We are having a glass of this Argentine Malbec from the Mendoza region. What an interesting wine. I find this to be mellower than what I would expect in a Malbec. I am finding it difficult to find the right words to describe this wine but here is my best shot: The nose is smoked meat — bologna, I think. The taste is robust and predominantly berries. The finish is vanilla.I am enjoying it. This is one reason I enjoy wine; every wine has the potential for  many different tastes, smells and textures. I love the challenge of identifying these sensory experiences with descriptive words.

Ku De Ta Malbec Argentina (2008)

Tom chose this wine and poured me a glass tonight. I was trapped in my chair because Trigger is cuddling with me. I just couldn’t get up! So, it is Wednesday night and we both had active and busy work days so our cocktail hour is particularly welcome tonight. This was a meeting-heavy day for me — and it was trying — so I was eager to come home to my cozy refuge. I threw together a weird dinner and I hope it tastes good. Here’s what I did. I had three pieces of leftover meatloaf, so I chopped it up along with some onions and browned it in a hot cast-iron skillet.  Then, to the meatloaf and onions I added tomatoes, broth, spices and some penne pasta. It is covered now and simmering. I also have some fresh spinach from the food co-op that I will saute. And, if I have the energy I will make a salad but no guarantees on that.

So, I don’t know how good dinner will be but the wine leading up to it is fantastic! This wine is from the home of the Malbec grape, Mendoza, Argentina, which is near the base of the Andes mountains. I don’t know what it is about the  Mendoza region, but they produce great wines. The flavor is robust with lots of fruit. It has a great mouthfeel with structured tannins. I like this very much. A winner!

Maipe Malbec (2009)

I bought this Argentine Malbec from a wine shop off of Zeeb Road in Ann Arbor on the recommendation of the owner. It’s reddish purple in the glass with an earthy nose. Lots of fruit on the palate — black cherry and blackberry. Round tannins. There is only one thing that I don’t like about this wine and that is the label! I like everything else. This is a good value at $10 a bottle.

We are having a blustery weekend. The west side of the state may be getting snow. We have frost warnings over on this side. We knew it had to happen; we’ve had such beautiful spring weather. So, it’s cold and the wind is howling, but we are warm and cozy inside.