Archive for October, 2020

The Judgement of Paris

Posted in Wine on October 17, 2020 by darmyers
The Judgement of Paris

Interesting story (if you’re a wine lover like me). Last night I had a wine from Chateau Souverain. A great Cabernet Sauvignon from the Napa Valley in California, that is priced under $20 at my local NSLC. It was a great Cabernet Sauvignon, that went deliciously with the Beef I had.

Chateau Soverain Cabernet Sauvignon

The interesting part is that this vineyard in Napa Valley hired winemaker Mike Grgich, a Croatian born winemaker, in his very first wine-making job. Mike Grgich would later go on and become quite famous. He would produce one of the Chardonnay wines that won the famous Judgement of Paris Wine Tasting. This Paris Wine tasting, which took place on May 24th, 1976, put the wine world on its ass. It upset the wine world, not only because 11 judges picked a California Chardonnay over a French Chardonnay, but because California beat France in a blind tasting of red wines as well. A California Cabernet beat out the most famous Red wines in France, including Chateau Lafitte Rothschild. So while that wine starts at $1000 and goes up from there, check out this one at our local NSLC that has a $3063 price tag. Yep, it’s over $3000.

Chateau Lafitte Rothschild $3063

And I know wine experts will probably blast me for comparing the two, but I love finding the story behind the wine, and I thought this one was pretty cool. Imagine, a California wine rated best in each category, which caused much surprise as France was generally regarded as being the foremost producer of the world’s best wines. As I enjoyed the Château Souverain, I really felt like I was drinking a winner.

Bottle Shock (2008)
Bottle Shock, the movie

There was a movie made about The Judgement of Paris in 2008. The movie was called ‘Bottle Shock’ and starred Bill Pullman and Alan Rickman, who starred as Steven Spurrier, the real life guy who organized the event, never dreaming in a million years that French wines would lose. It was a great movie, there are some love scenes, so you may want to watch it after the kids go to bed. Sit back, enjoy the movie, with your favorite California white or red wine.

And now for my wine of the week… The Judgement of Darlene if you will!

LaMura Rosso

I was thinking, how do I touch a wine, from a winery, where the first winemaker was one of the winners of the Judgement of Paris? And the wine is priced under $20, that is literally the epitome of a wine of the week! Let me tell you, last week was a great week for wine LOL! Because I found this beauty on Thanksgiving Monday and it is now my new favourite wine priced under $15. Thanksgiving Monday you ask? We are very lucky here in Halifax to have a few independent wine stores and they are open most holidays. And at one of those stores I found this amazing Italian wine. Grapes for this wine, Nero D’Avola, are grown on the slopes of the Marsala and Salemi regions of Sicily. This wine is fully organic, however that does not take away from the taste in any way. It’s a bold red, that in my opinion just sits beautifully on the palate and has a great lingering flavour. Did I tell you it’s $14.49 a bottle?

Chuckle of the Day

That’s it for me for this week. Have a great week, and I hope you discover an amazing wine.

Darlene

Thankful

Posted in Wine & Food on October 10, 2020 by darmyers

Who would have thought, last Thanksgiving, (here in Canada) that a year later Thanksgiving might looks quite different. I know with 2020 being an absolute wonky year with a Global pandemic, some people may find it hard this Thanksgiving. I hope you can find something to be grateful for, and I hope you are safe and healthy. I am thankful for so many wonderful things in my life.

Riley

I have my family, who are all healthy, and my nephew Riley, who is going to St. FX this year. He is up for a turkey dinner and a visit with his Aunt Dar. We’re having it earlier than most people, but that’s OK! So grateful he is living in Nova Scotia.

Road trip to Liverpool

I have amazing friends, I am so very grateful for.

My stuffed Turkey

I am grateful to have food on my table, coffee in my cup and wine in my glass.

Let’s talk about some wine, and even pair it with your Thanksgiving dinner. You can’t talk turkey without talking about the white wine.

Wine of the Week last week

The Wine of the Week last week would be a great wine for turkey. Flavorful, but not over-powering, it would be a great compliment for the gobble gobble. And at $14.49 a bottle, you can afford to feed it to your family.

Pinot Grigio is another great turkey wine

Pinot Grigio is another great turkey wine. With its crisp acidity, in my opinion, it’s the perfect pairing for a turkey. But here’s the thing about wine, if you like the wine with turkey, it’s a great wine to go with turkey. Wine is a very personal choice, and I’m only here to give a couple of suggestions, if needed.

If you’re a die hard red wine person, here’s the wine I had last night with my turkey dinner with Riley.

Pepperwood Grove Zinfandel

I shouldn’t tease you with this wine because I’m pretty sure the NSLC is sold out of it. But where ever you live in Canada or the U.S., if you see this wine, it’s really really good. We found out through the website Yarmouth, Nova Scotia had 6 bottles, and my good friend Angie has a daughter that lives in Yarmouth.

My friend Angie and I

So low and behold, we bought them out, and was able to enjoy the delicious Pepperwood Grove Old Vine Zinfandel. Any Zinfandel would go great, or if you love Italian wine, try a Primitivo. They are not expensive and it’s the same grape as Zinfandel. You would never know if you tried an American Zinfandel and an Italian Primitivo side by side. Even though they are the same grape, the Americans and the Italians have different ways of working with the grape, but both are delicious.

And now for my Wine of the Week

Montes Cabernet Sauvignon

The Colchagua region of Chile are putting out spectacular Cabernet Sauvignon wines. Chilean winemakers have had help from skilled winemakers all over the world, including the Napa Valley and France. The great thing about a Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon is that you are not paying the same price tag. This Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon is under $19 a bottle and goes perfect with all your favorite Fall comfort foods. Don’t you find as the weather gets cooler, you are drinking more Cabernet Sauvignon?

In 1987, Aurelio Montes and Douglas Murray, both highly experienced wine professionals in Chile, wanted to produce Chilean wines a quantum-leap higher in quality than the standards of the time. In 1988, they joined up with the other two founders, Alfredo Vidaurre and Pedro Grand, who brought their own complementary skills and expertise to the venture. Thus Montes was born. And now you too can enjoy a fantastic Cabernet at a wonderful price. Enjoy!

To all my readers, I am especially grateful for you as you come with me on this wine journey I am so very much enjoying. Have a wonderful long weekend, and stay safe!

Darlene

A Taste of French Food &Wine

Posted in Wine & Food on October 3, 2020 by darmyers
6 of the 7 Muskateers

This past weekend, my friend Angie (she took the above picture) hosted a French dinner party. Everything from the food, to our outfits, to the wine, were all French themed. She even provided us all with little French moustaches. And when we peeled them off, it took off any trace of a moustache we did have, LOL! Women going through menopause will get that joke!

We had some great food, a few great laughs, and some great French wine. We started the evening with a ‘welcome’ wine of a French rose, called Arrogant Frog. My friend Angie is seen holding the bottle of wine.

Angie holding the Arrogant Frog

There is an Arrogant Frog Sparkling rose, but that’s not the one we had, we enjoyed the dry Rose. It was crisp, light and delicious. The winemaker, Jean-Claude Mas is a 4th generation winemaker, who started assisting his father and grandfather in the vineyard when he was 3 years old. Our local NSLC also carries a Chardonnay Viognier white blend and a Cabernet Merlot red blend. I’ll have to try them. Made with the Syrah grape, this was a wonderful wine that we enjoyed with a delicious appetizer of spinach and artichoke dip on a baguette, made by Arla.

Not my picture, but you get the picture of how tasty it was

Our first course was a salad, which I made, and it had a base of spinach and arugula. I then added beets, mandarin oranges, bacon (of course), almonds, and grated parmesan cheese. I made my salad dressing with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, garlic, pepper, soy sauce and some brown sugar. With that course we enjoyed this French sparkling beauty.

Cremant De Bourgogne Brut

The Cremant De Bourgogne hails from the Maconnais region of Burgundy, Franch and Cremant is made in the exact say way as Champagne, what is commonly known as the traditional method. You know that you cannot call a Sparkling wine Champagne, unless it comes from the Champagne region of France and follows a whole list of strict guidelines. This was wonderful, made from Chardonnay grapes, and a steal of a deal at just $25. It was dry, and elegant with a lovely mousse (the foam and bubbles after a sparkling wine has been poured is called the mousse.) This is another great example of a sparkling wine that is made identical to Champagne, but is so much more affordable.

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Not the actual picture of the Beef Bourguinon Elaine made

Would you believe I did not get a picture of the main course. I’m so sad, because our friend Elaine made an amazing Beef Bourguignon. It was so delicious, and we paired it with mashed potatoes and French green beans. We served a variety of wines, both white and red, with the main course. We drank Pinot Noir, a GSM (Grenache, Syrah & Merlot) as well as Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio.

Dave & Fred, the brave two men who hang with us 5 women.

Dave, pictured above, made a wonderful french fluffy dessert with a custard and a homemade caramel sauce. It was a divine evening of food, wine and fun, but I can’t wait to tell you about the my Wine of the Week!

La Vielle Ferme

After last weekend, every single one of us will have this wine as a staple in our wine racks. Meet my new favorite white wine. This wine was recently written up in the Wall Street Journal for being a spectacular wine at a great price. This wine is just $14.49 a bottle here in Nova Scotia, and is a 4 grape blend. Bourboulenc, Grenache blanc, Ugni blanc & Vermentino, which are harvested at optimum maturity, which is the key to a flavorful full-bodied white wine. Gorgeous fruity flavors of apples and citrus with some tropical notes, this wine blew me away. I just loved it.

Words of a Wino – Love this

Well that’s it for me today. Thank you for coming along on my food & wine journey. I love it when people share their wine and food stories with me as well.

Till next weekend, Cheers

Darlene