casa del vino

Where wine is on the table everyday

Day 125: Old Man Winter . . .

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treana redIn most parts of the country, January usually means winter . . . you know, snow, ice, wind chills and cloudy skies.  Living in Texas affords us the opportunity to avoid most, if not all, of the maladies of winter.  In January of 1973, that was the year Brian moved from the suburbs of Chicago to northwest Houston.  Yep . . . giving up snow, wind chills and shovels for palm trees, sunny skies and sitting on the patio.

Unfortunately, someone forgot to tell Mother Nature about the move.  To this day, he isn’t sure if it was a cruel trick or it really happened, but in early January of that year–the exact day that the movers arrived to move them into their home, it snowed.  Yeah, like the first time in 14 years type of snow.  The kind of snow that in Chicago or Detroit or Cleveland, you’d laugh at as you drove home; in Houston, they put sand on the overpasses — not salt.  In Houston, they stopped on the freeway to take pictures . . . and they didn’t slow down, so imagine the fun and games the authorities had sorting out the traffic accidents.  Brian’s Dad had to find a convenience store to buy a box of rock salt (for making ice cream) to put on the moving truck ramp because it was icing up!  Houston. . .we have a problem.

A month later — we’re talking February now–Brian’s grandparents from Ontario, Canada came south for a visit — looking for palm trees, sunny skies and sitting on the patio.  Unfortunately, someone forgot to tell Mother Nature about the visit. Yeah, the exact day that they arrived, it snowed–AGAIN!  This time, people talked about how this had NEVER happened before!  The grandparents were less than impressed with their initial visit to south Texas!  However, just to put an exclamation point on their first 90 days in the Lone Star State, it snowed again at the beginning of March.

Do you remember the joke about tying a snow shovel to the back of your car and the first place you stop and someone asks you what that is–you know you’ve arrived?  Well, that’s what they thought was going to happen upon arriving in Texas. So, tonight, we’re under a Winter Weather Advisory . . . the Hill Country is expecting 1-3″ of snow and for our area, just a wintery mix.  But, the point is that we don’t really care for winter weather, and when we add in that Daughter #1 is heading back to school on Friday–well, it gets a bit unnerving.

Faced with such a fate, we decided to open a really nice bottle of wine from our recent trip to Paso Robles.  When we stopped at Hope Family Vineyards, there were so many good wines to taste and choose, but we settled on this 2009 Treana Red.  What our friends their told us was that, “The goal of Treana Red is to deliver, vintage after vintage, the best Cabernet Sauvignon-based wine in Paso Robles. Blended with Syrah for a complete, mouth-filling experience, our Treana Red is crafted to keep company with any wine from any region at any price point on the world stage.”  From our standpoint, it’s a juicy red wine with a really nice deep purple color and a sneaky nose that gets better and better the longer it sits in your glass.  A real fruit-forward wine, but you think that you’re enjoying something much bigger than a blend.  Our only concern–is that it’s priced too high for those of us in middle America.  Yes, it’s a fine  quality wine, but there are lots of fine quality wines from all over the world that are priced better than Treana.  It’s not a criticism, just an observation.  Regardless, you’ll enjoy this wine if you decide to treat yourself, and if not, from the same family, try Austin Hope’s Troublemaker–it’s half the price and has all of the full bodied taste you’ll love!

We’re settling in for a long winter’s nap, or at least until the alarm goes off tomorrow morning.  While it’s exciting to think about snow in this part of the world, as we get a little bit older, the real thought of it does NOTHING for us.  That said, we’ll deal with whatever is dealt our way in the morning.

Enjoy your wine this evening–enjoy it responsibly because it makes sense to do it that way and please remember to recycle whenever possible.


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