Posts Tagged ‘JeffIsRad’

Let’s have a “Menage a Trois”: The Stay Rad Interactive Wine Tasting Series Vol. 1

October 5, 2011

So, there I was.  Just making some vegetarian chili…

Then it came to me…

We should have a Menage a Trois!

Not just me…

We!

Hear me out…

I was at the ol’ Wal-Mart today, and took a quick peek at their wine selection.  It’s not the best.  Actually, it’s not much of anything.  But what Wal-Mart does have going for itself is that the prices are reasonable.  Plus… If you can find a wine at Wal-Mart, you can find it anywhere.

I picked this one up today for $7.97…

Folie a Deux 2009 Menage a Trois California Red Wine - It's about time!

Now, I’ve had this wine before.  Odds are, so have you.  According to an article on WinesAndVines.com, Menage a Trois topped the list of 30 wines with the most momentum in 2009 (according to the IRI marketing group).

So, I was thinking…

Why don’t we have a Menage a Trois?

All of us!

Think about it…

You can find this wine everywhere, and it’s hella cheap.

What I’m gonna do is taste the wine between now and Friday.  I’ll post my notes on Saturday.

That gives you a day or two to find and taste the wine.

You can take your own notes, then compare yours with mine.

Even better…

You can taste the wine WHILE you read my tasting notes.

Then you can leave a comment (or Tweet me your notes @JeffIsRad or #StayRad) to let me know what you think.

Now that I’ve given you your homework assignment, do you have any questions?

Good.

Let’s have a Menage a Trois!

Stay Rad,

Jeff

Hey Y’all! Hey Y’all!

September 10, 2011

Hey Y’all,

How are you?

I am fine.

I was just writing to let you know that I’ve got some really keen things that I will be writing about very soon.

Last night, I had a very dope dinner with Kara at Bubbles Wine Bar.

Today, I’m going to the Capitola Art and Wine Festival.

I am bummed out that I will not be making the Fury 66 reunion show at the Catalyst in Santa Cruz tonight.  They were my favorite band when I was in high school.  I also know that I will miss meeting up with some old friends at the show, but I’ve got an early day tomorrow.  When I go to a Fury 66 concert, I go all out.  I’m talkin’ stage diving and circle pits for days… You dig?

Tomorrow, I’ll be getting up bright and early to head up to Candlestick Park in San Francisco.  We will be tailgating hard core, before heading inside the stadium to see the 49ers destroy the Seattle Seahawks.  After the game, Kara and I are gonna stop by my Aunt and Uncle’s house for dinner.

What’s that?

What am I doing right now?

I’m slurping on some java and macking some tight breakfast…

Two eggs scrambled on a bed of rosemary potatoes.

These eggs are possibly the fluffiest and creamiest I have ever made.

Yeah… I’m pretty stoked.

I’ll write you soon.

Stay Rad,

Jeff

This is how we Chablis…

September 7, 2011

On a hot ass day, not too long ago, Kara and I decided to do a little hangin’ out on the front patio.

When the weather heats up, you’ve got to chill your wine down, so it was the perfect time to bust open this sucker…

Jacques Bourguignon 2009 Chablis

We picked up the Jacques Bourguignon 2009 Chablis from Trader Joe’s for 8 bucks.  I’ve been meaning to try some REAL Chablis for a while.  I say real, because in California the name “Chablis” is used for generic white wine… Usually from a jug.  In France, Chablis is a region located in the Northern-most area of Burgundy.  French Chablis are always 100% Chardonnay.  Don’t get it twisted.  Chablis are not gonna be big and buttery like the Chards from Cali.  These bad boys are known for their acidity.

Before popping the bottle, Kara whipped up a dope cheese plate…

Told you... Dope!

Now, on to the wine…

Color: This JB Chablis is a pale straw yellow.

Nose: There’s some oakiness to the nose, but it’s mainly packed with mushrooms and minerals.

Taste: There’s a big grassiness up front, followed by melon fruit, firm acid, and some sweet oaky tannins.

Score: This wine was nice.  That’s it.  Just nice.  For 8 bucks, it’s nothing I would ever run out to buy again… But… It was nice.  I give it an 85.

Look…

Though the wine was uninspiring, sometimes you don’t need to be blown away to enjoy your wine experience.

It was a beautiful day, with my beautiful wife.

We had some nice treats with some nice cold wine.

As the Chablis continued to flow, so did our conversations.

And that’s pretty cool.

Stay Rad,

Jeff

From the Ridge to the Sea…

September 5, 2011

On Saturday, Kara and I headed up to Ridge Vineyards to check out the new Fall Releases.

It sure was an event to behold.

Check it!

At check-in, we were greeted with the 2008 Monte Bello Chardonnay. The nose is loaded with baked apple and a hint of lemon grass. There's a nice acidity on the palate. This wine screams for cheese.

Next, we headed up to the barn to get some of the 2007 Mazzoni Home Ranch. This Zin comes blended with 39% Carignane. The palate is loaded with juicy black fruit with that hint of tire that I'm in love with.

We then moved over to the 2009 Pagani Ranch Zinfandel. This one had a bright acidity and dark fruit. It was a bit too jammy for me. That last sentence is the worst thing I have ever said about any wine from Ridge... Ever. Think about it.

At table three, we hit up the 2009 York Creek Zinfandel. It had a palate of tires and berries. With 7% Petite Sirah, this wine had a LOVELY grip.

Now the 2009 Lytton Springs was just dope. Great dark fruit rounded out with round, chalky tannins. You know I love chalk. This wine was F'ing Delish!

Finally, we moved down to the main tasting room for some Monte Bello action... The 2008 was FANTASTIC! This vintage is one of the first in a while that only consists of Cabernet Sauvignon (72%) and Merlot (28%). This bad boy was loaded with big blue fruit and silky round tannins. When Robert Parker tasted this vintage in 2010, he gave it 94 - 96 points... I can see why.

To finish off the tasting, we got to try the 1992 Monte Bello from a magnum bottle. This wine was an interesting fellow... The fruit, as it should, is starting to drop out. Coming to the forefront on the palate is this nice black olive component with a little bit of tires and chalk. I think the '92 is gonna turn into a very fun wine to play with in another 5 years or so.

As great as the wine was, there was another reason for taking a trip up to the top of Monte Bello Road…

In the days leading up to the event, I came to learn that the wine was to be paired with wood-fired pizzas from Pizza Politana!

Three pizzas to pair with the '08 Monte Bello Chardonnay, 2009 Lytton Springs, and 2008 Monte Bello. Loved 'em all!

Finishing off some Ridge sausage and eggplant pizzas. Yum!

The legendary Pizza Politana oven on wheels.

If we coulda’, we woulda’ stayed at The Ridge all day… but we had dinner plans…

So…

We hustled down to sea level to meet Kara’s dad at The Fish Market in San Jose for dinner…

While waiting to be seated, I picked up a Johnny Walker Red on the rocks from the bar.

For starters, I had to have me some oysters on the half shell. I am obsessed with these!

For the main course, I got me some catfish with fries and coleslaw. Triple yum, foo!

What a day!

From the Ridge, to the sea, to my bed for a hardcore nap.

Stay Rad,

Jeff

Beer (Can Chicken) Me!

September 4, 2011

Do you ever watch the Maury Povich Show?

As far as daytime talk shows go, Maury’s has to be considered one of the best… EVER.

It’s not that Maury brings anything special to the table as a host, or as an interviewer.  If fact, sometimes he’s a little too condescending for me.

The unsung heroes of the Maury Povich Show are the producers.  They’ve created a very simple format that is always… always… ALWAYS entertaining.

When you watch the show, there are really only three topics you are ever going to see…

There are the episodes where parents complain about their out-of-control children and have them sent to boot camp.

There are the paternity test episodes.  Though entertaining, they kind of bum me out.  I cannot for the life of me understand why you, as a parent, would want to broadcast questions of your child’s paternity to the world.

But my favorite Maury episodes are the ones dealing with EXTREME PHOBIAS, like this one…

Now look…

I’ve seen plenty of these episodes.  I’ve seen people afraid of cotton balls.  I’ve seen people afraid of olives.  I’ve seen people afraid of masks.  I even saw a nurse… A NURSE who was afraid of BANDAIDS!

Now as weird as these phobias seem, and as ridiculous as the Maury Show makes these people look, you have to know that the fears that these people have are REAL.

If you think about it in terms of percentages, you run into folks with these types of phobias every single day…  You just don’t know who they are unless they tell you.

For the longest time, I had always hoped for the day when I would meet a person with a fear like that…

But to actually go on a date with one of them, and to see their phobia in action… Well that was a dream come true.

Here’s the story…

When I was in college, about a year before I met my beautiful wife (I love you, Kara!), I had started to date a girl I had known since I was in high school.  I’m leaving her name out, but she shares the same name as a famous actress.  For the sake of this post, I will refer to her as Jennifer Aniston.

About two weeks into our relationship, Jennifer Aniston and I went on a date to the San Francisco Zoo.  Now, you have to know that during this time I was finishing up my Biology degree at San Jose State University, so I was really excited to show off how much I knew about all the different animals…

I showed her everything!

The zebras!

The hippos!

The lions!

The monkey house!

And my personal favorite… The gorillas!

Everything!

Come lunch time, we were exhausted… So we made a pit stop at the food court.

If you’ve never been to the food court at the San Francisco Zoo, you have to know that it is outside.  Surrounding the entire food court there is a bunch of netting.  The reason for this is to keep the animals out.  I’m not talking about the zoo animals… I’m talking about the city animals… Especially the birds.

Seagulls…

Crows…

Pigeons…

Birds, man…

Birds!

So there we are… Jennifer Aniston and I… Eating lunch.

I had a nice, juicy burger.  Since Jennifer Aniston was a vegetarian, she had a very healthy basket of french fries.

Now, I can’t recall a thing that we spoke about.  I just remember that she was smiling a lot.  I mean… Why wouldn’t she?  She was on a date with me!

I have to admit that I couldn’t pay attention to what she was saying, because I was hyper-focused on what she was eating… And HOW she was eating it…

The fries at the zoo are served vertically in a 32 ounce soda cup.  The fries are sooooooo greasy that the cup becomes translucent within minutes.  Next to her cup of fries, she had a 16 ounce soda cup filled to the top with ketchup.  So there she is… smiling… laughing… telling me how awesome I am… and, all the while, she’s dipping her fries in this ketchup.

Look… There’s nothing wrong with putting ketchup on your fries, but there was something wrong with HOW MUCH ketchup Jennifer Aniston was putting on HER fries.

It was UNREAL!

After each dunk, the fry would be completely covered in ketchup… COMPLETELY!  From one end to the next, these fries were COVERED.  She would pause for a moment to tell me something, and then she would dunk the fry AGAIN!  By the time each fry went into her mouth it was SATURATED WITH KETCHUP!

You know, there comes a point at which ketchup makes the transition from a lovely condiment to the MAIN COURSE.  Jennifer Aniston exceeded that threshold by a longshot.

It was UN-F-ING-REAL!

Sorry…

I kind of took a tangent.

Let me get back on track…

So there she is.  Jennifer Aniston is eating her fries, and telling me how rad I am, when… all of a sudden… something changed…

First I saw it in her face.  Where there was once a smile, her face began to turn to stone.  At this point, she wasn’t looking at me… She was looking through me.

Next, she began to move… wildly.  In one motion, she began to stand up while waving her hands in all directions.  As a result of her frantic motions, the ketchup soaked fry that was once in her right hand began to fly across the food court.  Her body, began to reach for higher ground.

Before I knew it, she was on top of the table… hands still waiving.

The airborne fry had found a new home, having been propelled onto the patch on the back of a Hell’s Angel.

Jennifer Aniston began screaming, “GET IT AWAY!  GET IT AWAY!”

When I looked around the table, wondering what she was talking about, I spotted a lonely pigeon on the ground.  It was chewing on a dropped french fry right next to where her feet had been.

So there I was… My date was flipping out.  Everyone in the food court was staring us down.  And I’m pretty sure that a member of the Hell’s Angels Motorcycle Club was ready to kick my ass.

I shooed away the pigeon, gave my apologies to the biker (from a distance), grabbed Jennifer Aniston by the had, and headed for the exit.

On the way home, Jennifer Aniston was very apologetic, “I’ve been afraid of birds ever since I was a child.”

“Birds?  Really?” I asked, “Why are you afraid of birds?”

“You know how all birds kind of look the same?” she explained, “Well… When I was a little girl, I used to think that they were all the same bird… I thought that they were… you know… following me.”

As much as I felt bad for her, having to deal with a phobia like that… In the back of my mind, I was kind of stoked.

Finally!

Finally, I had found a person in real life that had one of those crazy Maury Povich Show type phobias.

“Good thing,” I thought to myself, “I will never have to deal with a phobia like that.”

Or so I thought…

Let’s fast-forward a few years…

Jennifer Aniston and I only went on a few more dates before we called it quits.  In the years since then, I had met my future wife, I had earned my Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from San Jose State, and was in the process of getting my teaching credential.

As part of the process for getting my credential, I had to do a little student teaching.  It’s a pretty neat gig, being a student teacher…

I taught a 6th period Biology class at a high school right down the street from my apartment.  Since the only class that I taught was in the afternoon, and most credential classes are held at night, I got to sleep in every morning.  I would usually wake up around 10am, watch a little Price Is Right while eating my cereal, and ride my bike over to the high school around noon.

I would always try to show up to the school during 5th period, so I would have some time to prep for my class and observe how my master teacher was running his class.  The students in the 5th period class were very used to having me sit in on lectures and experiments with them.

So…

One day, I showed up to school during 5th period (like normal).  After locking my bike up, I headed toward the classroom.  Now, even though there was a paved route to the room where I taught, the quickest way to get to the room was to walk an unpaved path between two trees.

I was about halfway along the path, between the two trees, when I felt something…

This something was unlike anything I’d ever felt before…

It felt as if someone had just punched me in the back of the head!

Feeling shocked, angered, and defensive, I spun around with my fists up… I was ready to fight!

When I turned, however, there was nobody there.

“Maybe,” I thought, “there was somebody in the parking lot.  Maybe someone threw a rock at me.  Maybe they were hiding behind one of the cars.”

As I started walking back toward the parking lot to check out what was going on, I felt it again.

Someone… or something hit me in the back of the head… AGAIN!

Furious, I spun back around.

And again… Nothing was there!

Was I being attacked?

Was I imagining this?

Was I going crazy?

“Hello?” I shouted.  “Is anyone there?”

Confused, I started making my way back toward the classroom…

And then I saw it!

Out of the corner of my eye…

I looked up in the sky, only to see the silhouette of two long black wings… and two sets of razor-sharp talons…

It was a crow!

And it was coming right at me!

I ran into the classroom, barely closing the door behind me before the crow was able to catch up.

Everyone in the class turned their attention toward me.  Seeing that I was covered in sweat, the students began to ask me what happened.

“There’s a bird out there…” I panted, “and it just attacked me!”

After their laughter died down, I told them, “Just you wait!  After school, let’s take a look at those trees out there, and I’ll show you!”

Sure enough, when the day ended, a group of about ten students met up with me to see what was going on…

“That’s where it happened,” I showed the kids, pointing to the trees I had walked between.

As we looked closer, I noticed that there was a nest in one of the trees… and there was chirping…

I realized that there must be some chicks in the nest.  The crow must have been protecting her young.

Just then, a student walked by us, and began to make his way between the trees.

“Be careful,” I warned, “There’s a bird over there attacking people!”

“Yeah right!” he responded as he continued walking.

And then we all saw it…

The crow that had assaulted me earlier, starting going after the student.

As the kid spotted the bird, he dropped his backpack and took off screaming.

So here’s the deal…

I totally understand why the bird attacked me.  It’s perfectly natural for a mother to be protective of her offspring.

But even so…

Ever since that day, I have gone the way of the Maury Povich guest… I have gone the way of Jennifer Aniston…

I am deathly afraid of birds!

Not all birds.  I ain’t afraid of no penguins or peacocks.  I don’t give an F about a turkey or a duck.

But when it comes to city birds, like pigeons, seagulls, and crows, I just can’t hang.  I can’t!

I don’t just hate those birds…

I FEAR THEM!

Now, you know that recently I was able to get over my hatred of eggs, but when it comes to my fear of birds… it’s kind of tough for me.  I don’t want to get to a point where I want to pet a pigeon, or give a crow a hug.

What I really want is REVENGE!

Albeit symbolic, I can’t think of a better way to get back at a bird then to shove a can of beer in its body cavity and roast it on my barbecue.  So that’s what I did last week…

I present to you, BEER CAN CHICKEN: The Revenge!

I got a 5 pound bird. I rinsed it, dried it inside and out, and rubbed it with "beer can chicken" seasoning... Yes... That stuff exists.

Next, I got a can of Coors Lite and poured half of it out into a measuring cup for later. I put a bunch of holes in the top of the can, sprinkled some of that seasoning into the can, and placed the can in a special "beer can chicken rack" (Yup... Those exist too!).

The next thing I did was to arrange the chicken so it stood upright with the beer can up its butt. To make sure the wings cook evenly, tuck them behind the chicken's back.

Place the chicken on a grill set to indirect heat on medium. Notice the drip pan under the chicken. Only the three burners to the right are on. Shut the lid and check back in an hour or so. Make sure the temperature of the grill settles in between 400 and 500 degrees F.

The nice thing about roasting a chicken is that you’ve got time to chillax while it’s cooking.  Kara used this time to make us a nice cheese plate…

Say, "Cheese and Olives!"

And what goes well with cheese?

Gloria Ferrer 2008 Carneros Chardonnay

You got it!  Wine!

We picked up the Gloria Ferrer 2008 Carneros Chardonnay the other day while we were tasting at BevMo.  The Wine Enthusiast gave the ’07 vintage a 90.  For ten bucks, it’s one of the few actual deals there.  Here’s the breakdown…

Color: A beautiful golden yellow.

Nose: Baked apple.  Pear.  Guava.  Delicious.

Taste: There’s this great lime fruit acidity that lingers and dances on the tongue.  The acidity is balanced out with an oaky vanilla creaminess and green apple fruit.

Score: This wine is a steal and a half.  Buy yourself a six-pack, and bring it to your next wine party.  Give this crowd-pleaser an 89+.

Back to the dirty bird…

The chicken is ready when the thickest part of the thigh is 180 degrees F. My chicken was ready in about an hour and 20 minutes.

I let the chicken rest on the counter for about 15 minutes while Kara whipped up some horseradish mashed potatoes. The foil tent is to keep the chicken hot and moist. It also fights off cosmic rays.

I cut myself a piece of leg, thigh, and wing. It's plated next to Kara's delicious horseradish mash. Yummy yummy, you big dummy.

Now, you cannot enjoy a dead bird unless you have the perfect wine to go with it…

Paul Jaboulet Aine 2007 Parallele 45 Cotes Du Rhone

The Paul Jaboulet Aine 2007 Parallele 45 Cotes Du Rhone runs for 10 bones at BevMo, but you can find it at hella places.  This Cotes Du Rhone is 60% Grenache and 40% Syrah.  Check it out…

Color: Deep burgundy.

Nose: This is big and inky, with stinky blackberry and granite.

Taste: Big fruit of blackberry, blueberry, and plum.  There’s a great acidity with this one, balanced out with a little graphite and leather.  The horseradish potatoes brought the blueberry fruit out in a major way.  The fruitiness and acidity of the wine paired nicely with the richness of the bird.

Score: Another gem.  Give the Parallele 45 a solid 88+.  This is the perfect wine for roasted meats.  Keep it in mind for Thanksgiving.

So, you gotta know that I still am afraid of birds.

It still doesn’t mean that I can’t take out a little revenge when necessary…

Stay Rad,

Jeff

Thank God it’s #CabernetDay!

September 1, 2011

It’s Cabernet Day!

Considering I didn’t plan this event out at all, I ran over to the Safeway and picked up this…

Two Vines and One Big Glass!

The Columbia Crest 2009 Two Vines Cabernet Sauvignon cost me $6 at Safeway.  This Washington State winery consistently makes some good wines at a good value.  In spite of the Two Vines series being Columbia Crest’s entry-level label, Wine and Spirits gave it a 90… So… You know…

Here’s my take…

Color: It’s a deep dark red.  Nice.

Nose: Toasty oak dominates over hints of raspberry and plum.

Taste: There’s this big ripe plum and cranberry fruit up front.  The Two Vines has these nice, round, and (dare I say it) chalky tannins.  You know I love chalk!  There’s a good lime fruit acidity to this wine.

Score: The 2009 Two Vines is a great buy.  It’s a great table wine AND the perfect thing to bring to a last-minute Cabernet Day celebration.  Give it a solid 88 and drink it… NOW!

Stay Rad,

Jeff

Gettin’ down at the Strip… Mall.

August 30, 2011

Sometimes the place to be is the strip mall.

Think about it!

If you’re hungry, just head on over to Panera…

Panera... I dare ya!

I got me half a turkey sandwich and a bowl of black bean soup.

If there’s a BevMo nearby, and it’s a Saturday, you can do a little wine tasting…

Well what do you know?

Six wines on a lazy Saturday? Why not?

More so than normal, I was really stoked on the wines they had for tasting…

The Cala Blanca 2009 Verdejo was crisp... Hella crisp.

The Gloria Ferrer 2008 Carneros Chardonnay was the bomb. It had a great balance of creaminess and acidity. For ten bucks, we had to buy us some.

The Triplebank 2010 Marlborough Pinot Noir was nice and ripe.

The Francis Coppola 2008 Director's Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley fell a little short of what I have come to expect from Dry Creek Zinfandels, though it did stay true to the style of the region.

Gnaughty Vines 2008 Old Vine Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley was a fruit bomb. Though delicious, it came across as a little fake to me.

The Corazon de Plata 2010 Syrah/Tennat had a nice mix of dark fruit and bicycle tires.

BevMo even had some cheese and crackers for us to enjoy…

Mmmmmmmmmmmmm.....

Not a bad way to spend a weekend…

Not bad at all.

Stay Rad,

Jeff

Under the Weather… And Over It.

August 29, 2011

Hey Y’all,

Guess who’s sick…

Assorted cold medicines from Walmart.

On the way home, I stopped at Walmart to get some generic cold medicine.

More importantly, I had to pick up a can of my favorite cold remedy…

Menudo. Hold the Ricky Martin. Heyoooooohhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Look…

I know (fa sho) that a can of beef stomach soup isn’t really gonna cure me, but it makes me feel better… mentally.

Everyone has their own cold remedy.  The idea is that it comforts you, when you feel like your face is gonna explode.

So my question to you…

What is your favorite cold remedy?

Stay Well,

Jeff

Ooh baby, I like it raw!

August 27, 2011

There is a sushi place about half a mile from my house called CreAsian.

If you read the reviews on Yelp.com, you’ll find that many folks have given it five stars… along with hyperbole-laden comments like, “This is the GREATEST SUSHI in the history of the UNIVERSE!” and, “If you don’t like CreAsian, you are the BIGGEST DUMMY in the contiguous United States!”

If you come across my review, you’ll find it to be a little less flattering…

I really do like the place, but I’ve eaten plenty of sushi in my day.  Kara and I lived in the Japan Town neighborhood of Downtown San Jose for a good 3+ years before moving to Morgan Hill.  It’s not that I’m a sushi snob… It’s just that I’m never going to be quick to crown the ONLY sushi place I go to as being the best.

Look.  CreAsian is a good sushi restaurant with some neat looking specialty rolls (Sashimi Tacos anyone?), but they are a little pricey.  When it comes to just having some good, fresh slices of delicate fish, however… I’ve had better for cheaper.

With all that being said, I do like me some CreAsian (in spite of it having the worst name of all time).

I gave it 4 stars!

Recently, Kara and I took a trip to the closest sushi place in the history of our house!

Here are the details…

After arriving, Kara and I were promptly seated and each served up a hot bowl of miso soup. Soulful. Heartwarming. Delicious.

To wet our whistles, we got us some Asahi Super Dry beer. Nice and crisp.

And you cannot have beer and sushi without HOT SAKE! It's got a nice nose of caramel and butterscotch. One sip is all you need to get in sushi mode.

Beer + Sake = SAKE BOMB! De-Lish!

While my fish was getting prepped, I was served a house salad. It had some nice chunks of mango and a tangy and creamy dressing. Yum!

I got me the 20 piece sashimi. It's simple. A beautiful assortment of raw fish. You know how we do!

Now, the key to a quality sashimi experience is in how you prep your soy sauce.  Here is how I roll…

One nice nugget of wasabi.

Tuck the wasabi in under a blanket of ginger.

Lay down a small pond of soy sauce.

Use your chop sticks to mush down the wasabi under the ginger. Start dipping your fish once the soy sauce gets nice and cloudy. Add more wasabi, ginger, and soy sauce as needed.

The sashimi was dope!  Delicate.  Flavorful.  Savory.  Satisfying…

BUT…

My favorite part of a sashimi dinner is at the end of the night when I dump my ginger wasabi soy sauce over a bowl of rice. You have to be careful to eat just a little bit at a time. Your nose will start to burn... but in a good way.

I must say that my latest visit to CreAsian was awesome.  I’m LITERALLY DYING to get back there soon.

Here’s to the greatest sushi this side of the Rio Grande!

Shimmy shimmy ya!  Shimmy yam!  Shimmy yay!

Hey Ol’ Dirty Bastard, take it away!

Stay Rad,

Jeff

Searching for value in Bordeaux…

August 27, 2011

“Should we open up a bottle?”

It’s a simple question.

The answer should be simple…

but it never is.

“What should we open?”

“I don’t know.”

“What do we have?”

“We’ve got plenty of wine, but it’s Thursday.  I’m not gonna open up anything good.”

And it goes ’round and ’round and ’round…

As I dug into the wine fridge, I found this…

Chateau Du Seguinier 2005 Premieres Cotes de Blaye, Bordeaux

I don’t recall where I bought this wine…  Probably Trader Joe’s.

I don’t remember how much I paid…  Most places on the internet show that it is less than 10 bucks.

I do know that I purchased this wine at a time when I knew a lot less about wine than I do today…  Considering that I’m still learning, I know that I didn’t know much at all…  You know?

At the time, what I knew about Bordeaux was that 2005 was an AMAZING year…  “A 2005 for less than ten bucks???!!!???!!!!  I’m keeping this one!” I thought.

On Thursday, when I spotted the Chateau Du Seguinier 2005 Bordeaux, I was all, “Why not?”

Cotes de Blaye is a lesser-known appellation of the Bordeaux region of France.  It is technically a left bank wine… but WAY North.  Their red wines are primarily Merlot based.  They are known for being dry.

Here’s how it went down…

If you wanna see the color, hold that sucka in front of a fridge foo!

Color: The Chateau Du Seguinier is a dark brick-red.

Nose: Really good!  Cranberry and blueberry fruit with a touch of pencil shavings.  I ain’t gonna lie… It smells delicious.

Taste: I know that this wine is supposed to be dry, but the Chateau Du Seguinier is HELLA DRY.  Very tart.  The tannins are very harsh and bitter.  It’s got a little cabbage and dried tomato skins on the finish.

Score: I initially gave this wine an 84+, but as I let it sit for about a half-hour the tannins started to mellow out.  With a little decanting, it shows more like an 86+.  It comes of as a decent table wine (not a term that is often associated with Bordeaux).  It would go really good with spaghetti.  In fact…

A BIG plate of Spaghetti with a HUGE Fork.

While tasting this wine, I become obsessed with spaghetti…

So I hooked myself up.

For the sauce, I sweated some onions in olive oil.  Then I deglazed the pan with a splash of the Chateau Du Seguinier (Why not?).  After the wine steamed off, I threw in a can of diced tomatoes, salt n’ peppa, and some cumin and dried oregano.

When the pasta was ready, I tossed in the sauce, along with some freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese and some basil.

The spaghetti paired nicely with the Chateau Du Seguinier.  It brought out some nice fruit notes in the wine.  Cranberry and raspberry for days.  It was all good.

So my take on “value” Bordeaux is simple.  They are meant to drink young.  They are meant to have with food.  If you spent less than 20 bucks for it, don’t hesitate…

Just pop that bottle, baby.

Stay Rad,

Jeff


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