I love Hawaii. In my mind it is beautiful and perfect: sandy beaches, warm weather and delicious foods. And lately, I have been really wanting to go back (I don’t know, maybe it is from all this dreary Seattle weather). Unfortunately, I can’t jump on a plane and head off to Hawaii at this moment, so I decided to bring a touch of “Aloha” to the dinner table.
Half-way between Seattle and Spokane, along the I-90 corridor, there is a wine oasis. The Cave B Estate Winery sits high up on the cliffs above the Columbia River commanding spectacular views of the valley below.
I have passed by the exit for the winery many times, always curious about the winery, but never ventured off the highway. Recently, life called for a few celebrations, so my husband, daughter and I met my parents and brother at the winery, with the plans to have lunch, do a little wine tasting and walk around the vineyards.
May 24th marked the anniversary of the Judgement of Paris, the famous blind taste test in France the pitted California wines against French wines. On this fateful day in 1976, two California wines, the 1973 chardonnay from Chateau Montelena and the 1973 cabernet sauvignon from Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, won top honors.
The results were a shock to the French judges, and many others. But, it put California wine (and the U.S.) on the map as a serious contender in the wine scene.
So, what better way to celebrate this notable day, than to watch the movie, Bottle Shock (a 2009 movie based on the Judgement of Paris) and drink some California wine.
It is no secret that the wine industry has been male dominated since, well, forever. However, recent reports show this is now changing, which is good news for females entering the field. The title of a Wine Enthusiast article sums it up nicely: The Number of Women Winemakers Is Growing, and Fast. Well, at least in California. Which led me to thinking – how does Washington State compare when it comes to female winemakers?
Last week a heat wave hit Seattle. I couldn’t let the 80+ degree temperatures (in April!) go to waste, so I reached for a bottle of Rosé. Unfortunately, I was caught off guard by the summer-like conditions. I had to think fast and throw my wine in the freezer for a quick blast of cool, before settling on semi-chilled wine.
At least I had a full glass in hand while watching the sunset.
The freezer method worked (kinda) for the moment, but it is not a long term solution. What I really need is a wine cooler. Something to keep my wine at the correct temperature, ready to drink at a moments notice. Like many, I tend to chill wine only when needed, so my fridge isn’t too full and my food isn’t fighting for space with my wine.
Anymore consumers are going to the internet to decide everything from what wine to drink with dinner to what car to buy. This means that every business needs an internet presence in order to be seen and increase consumer awareness.
But, before you jump feet first into creating a website, here are a few points to keep in mind when creating your website:
- Your website goal
- Mobile optimization
Moving along my virtual wine tour through Italy, my next stop is the Lombardy region. Lombardy is the home of Milan, Marscipone cheese and Ossobuco (a fancy dish consisting of veal shanks and bone marrow). More importantly, it is the home to a good handful of wine regions, the three most well known include the Franciacorta, the Oltrepo Pavese and the Valtellina.
There are certain wines I consider ‘cocktail wines.’ They tend to be boozy – high alcohol content and a lot of heat. And sometimes that is not a bad thing. Especially on a Friday night after a long week of work and life.
I got stuck in Italy. Well, virtually stuck in Italy. And I am not complaining. Italy is one of my favorite European countries. You see, I started a virtual wine tour, so I could enjoy both wine and food from different wine regions all over the world. I merrily ate and drank my way through England, France and Spain.
For some reason, I landed in Italy, had a few eats and drinks and went on permanent Siesta. I am embarrassed, especially since I was so excited for this part of my journey.
Well, I am starting my virtual Italy tour over and this time, and I am starting in the Piedmont region. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the Piedmont region is a culinary capital in Italy, as well as the home to Nebbiolo, Barolo & Barbaresco wines. Sometimes called the “Burgundy of Italy“, the Piedmont region is known for good red wines and exquisite food, including the white truffle (mangia mangia!).
Marie Courtin’s Résonance Champagne is luxurious. The lemony yellow wine offers flavors of citrus and green apple, and is both refreshing and smooth. The very low dosage allows this wine to pair nicely with just about any meal, as well as hold its own as a stand alone drink.
If you are looking for a nice Champagne for New Year’s or for any nice occasion, you cannot go wrong with a bottle of Résonance.