Ramsden Estate Napa Valley Reserve Merlot 2010

Melody is on the road again, so I rooted around for a weekday wine. I found this Ramsden Estate Merlot 2010.
It’s fairly tannic, has a red fruit cherry taste, and a touch of pepper and a touch of sweetness.
No cooking tonight: reheated pizza and the World Series.

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The Patriots Merlot 2010

Melody is on the road, and she’ll be looking for some posts. This is The Patriots Merlot 2010 from Chile, a Wall Street Journal wine club wine. It’s pleasant enough, slightly sweet, tasting of cherries. It is going well with caesar salad and scrambled eggs.

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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.

Vitiano (2008)

We are having this Vitiano 2008, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, and Merlot for our Saturday night. We both had to work today and so it feels more like a weekday than a weekend.

This is spicy on the nose on the palate is a quick hint of watermelon followed by blackberries. This is very,  very pleasant. I like it very much.

I purchased this at World Market for $19.99.

William Knuttel Cabernet Sauvignon (2008)

I was going to finish the dregs from last night’s wine, but Tom insisted that we open a new bottle because I am going out of town tomorrow and, of course, we have to enjoy our last evening together until Saturday. So I chose this William Knuttel Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, which I thought initially was a Napa Valley Cabernet . . . oh boy! I LOVE California Cabernets. But after we opened it and observed the color in the glass and experienced the nose, we knew it was not a pure Cabernet. Sure enough, when reading the “fine print” I discovered this is a blend of Cabernet, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. That doesn’t make it an inferior wine, but it is clearly not what I expected. Still good, but very different. There is a distinctive nose and taste of a blend with Cabernet Franc and we pretty much recognized it immediately. Also, I have to brag about Tom, who correctly determined the year to be 2008 by the color in the glass.

This is a very good mid-week quaff with a rich cherry and plum nose. The taste is cranberry, licorice and tobacco. The finish is lengthy. We are going to have this tonight with some leftovers so instead of a picture of dinner, I decided to post a picture of Trigger in her new red shirt.

Cheers!

A.R.H. Family Shiraz Cabernet Merlot (2009)

A wonderful weekend and lovely Saturday night. I am listening to “my” football team on the radio and hoping for a big win.

We both worked hard around the house today and completed many chores on our to-do list. Now, a well-deserved relaxing evening.

This A.R.H. Family Shiraz Cabernet Merlot 2009 is our choice for a cozy fall evening. This is rich in plum flavors with a tobacco finish. This goes well with out dinner of ground turkey/black bean/pasta which I served with fresh sauteed spinach and some homemade baked beans.

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.

Vitiano (2007)

Happy Thursday . . .over-the-hump-day! Tom is out of town so I am having a quiet evening and trying to relax after a hectic day.  I worked late and then stopped at Plum’s Market on the way home and picked up a few groceries for dinner. Of course, I couldn’t walk past the wine without looking. I only bought one bottle and this was it. The blend of Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet intrigued me. Good choice, Melody! The texture is soft and the flavors complex. The initial impression is ripe fruit and black pepper.  It took me awhile to nail the finish. . .but happily I did. . .celery! I can’t say that celery is a popular wine-tasting term, but I promise you, it is the perfect descriptor.

So, I grilled a burger for my dinner and had it with my fresh tomatoes from the garden. I have some watermelon waiting for me if I can find the room.

Sonoma Vineyards Merlot (2007)

This is a stormy, steamy Friday night. We are under a tornado warning and a severe thunderstorm warning. We’ve definitely had the severe storm but I think we have been spared the tornado. We are listening to Michael Crawford crooning and the thunder and rain pelting on the windows. Cozy, cozy, cozy!

We are looking forward to a stay-at-home weekend, although our get-a-ways have been stupendous. . .this weekend will be catch up on our tasks weekend.

Johnny, Melody, David

I have posted a picture from last weekend’s class reunion in Northern Michigan. Such fun!

So, in spite of the heat today, I am roasting a stuffed chicken with potatoes for our dinner. I selected this California Merlot. Although I don’t consider myself a Merlot fan, it works well with certain meals and this is one of them. The wine is soft, somewhat fleshy and feels round on the palate. Lots of fruit, too. In the words of my brother-in-law. . .this drinks good.

By the way, in the picture. . .Johnny and I attended a 2-room schoolhouse and sat at a round table with the rest of our kindergarten class! Every grade had a row. . .one room had kindergarten through 3rd grades (one row per grade) and the other room had 4th through 7th grade. Our teacher was Mrs. Goodrich.A stellar educator! I think the other room’s teach was Mrs. Bowen.  How many of you attended a red-brick, 2-room school?