Penumbra Petite Sirah Petit Verdot (2010)

It has been awhile since I took a sip of wine and did a retake. . .like, “wait, need another sip!” This was one of those nights. I opened this bottle and tasted while cooking dinner for one (Tom is out of town) and it made me sit up and take notice. It is splendid! Inky black color, understated nose but huge taste. Full of fruit with subtle spice and chewy tannins. I really love this!

I am making a steak stirfry with my local cow, local broccoli and tomatoes and whatever else I have in my refrigerator. It is me and the Wall Street Journal (and this delicious wine) for dinner tonight. Cheers!

20120203-191825.jpg

Advertisements

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.

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.

Robert Mondavi Vinetta (2006)

robert-mondavi-private-selection-vinetta-2006I am waiting to see what Tom chooses for our wine tonight. We just finished a martini — the life-giving fluid, as Tom always says. It is Sunday after Thanksgiving, the snow is falling heavily in Michigan, Trigger is snuggled in my chair with me and we are anticipating our week ahead. We had an active weekend and wish we had one more day to recover.

I have a pot of beef stew on the stove — a change from turkey! I started with a chuck roast, which I cut into cubes, dried with paper towels and seasoned with salt and pepper. I browned the beef in a cast-iron skillet with very hot oil; I added a chopped onion and two cloves of garlic (chopped); then I added about 1/4 cup tomato sauce, the remains of a bottle of dry red (probably a cup or so) and a small can of chicken broth and let it simmer for awhile (at least an hour, probably more). A few minutes ago, I transferred the beef mixture from the skillet into a larger pot and added thyme, bay leaves, cubed potatoes and carrots. It’s covered and simmering now.

And Tom has brought me a glass of wine! It is something he bought today at our local grocery store, Polly’s Country Market. He said it was on sale for $8. This Robert Mondavi Vinetta 2006 is very good. This is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (72%), Merlot (10%), Petit Verdot (10%), Malbec (7%) and, last and least. Cabernet Franc (1%). I really like these red blends; so interesting. This is very Bordeaux like. The nose is delightful — with hints of nutmeg and cinnamon. On the palate is wood, cocoa and bramble. The tannins are firm. Tom selected a good wine for our beef stew on this snowy, winter night. Cheers!