casa del vino

Where wine is on the table everyday

Day 199: Mi Casa Es Su Casa . . .

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Steak House CabWhen Brian first started dating Jean after graduating from college, he still remembers going to her house for the first date and seeing a big sign across the top of her family’s house front door . . . “Mi Casa Es Su Casa”.  Having taken a few Spanish courses in both high school and college, Brian was extremely impressed.  What a welcome sign that was!  Simply put, “my house is your house”.  There is something special about not only what the statement refers to, but perhaps more importantly, what it means.  To us, it’s the simple expression of you are welcome in our house . .  . the ability to say that we welcome your company . . . or the understanding that – literally – what’s our’s is yours.  Such an incredible offering and a powerful message that even back in 1981, made a difference.

This visit was the first time that Brian got to “meet the parents”.  He soon discovered the wacky world of the Freitag’s where Bill and Margaret were the leaders of the brood of six girls.  Margaret was an artist and woman of many talents – you never quite knew what she was up to while all were at school or in Bill’s case – work.  Memories include an orange painted TV when “the brood” complained that all their friends had color TV’s instead of B&W, then there was the paper mache cigar store indian “Minnie” who adorned the front hallway, and who could forget the dreary gray sign with a dead dandelion on it in the front yard acknowledging the house as “Yard of the Weak” – many a neighbor got upset over not being awarded this honor (do people really read?).

The purpose for a tribute to Margaret tonight is that it’s been 21 years since we said our goodbyes and she ascended to a much better place.  We think about her often – mostly when seeing something bright red (her favorite color) or when Jean irons (her least favorite activity).  No doubt she left behind a legacy and memories of laughter and a “you never know” smile.  She left behind a brood who have grown into women who share her passion for doing the right thing mixed with the ability to balance a multitude of tasks and smile through it all.  Margaret – we love and miss you, but know you are watching over us !

Tonight we traveled to Washington to try a wine that we have been looking at and hearing about for two or three years.  Having previously written about wines from the state of Washington, we know that there are some really good wines and some that need a little–well, a little aging!  But, this one has been recommended to us by a number of wine aficionados and we’ve resisted until tonight.  Our 2009 Steak House Cabernet Sauvignon from Precept Wines is a fruit bomb!  Rated anywhere from 84-88 points, the 2009 is a superb Cab with Deep garnet color leads you down the path to aromas of blackberry and mild peppers. When the wine is in your mouth and you pull air over it you will be delighted with the raspberry charge and the light tannins that remain on your palate. This wine finishes with supportive tannins and lingering fruit character.  Steak House is not a Cabernet vinted for long aging; however, if you enjoy a good Cabernet, buy this now!  When you find this wine at your favorite market, on the back label it will say made by Magnificent Wine Company, which is really Precept.  Wit a price point under $14 a bottle, you’re going to wonder why you’ve been avoiding this wine.  And, as the wine stays opened, the flavors and aromas are even more intense than upon opening.  It’s yet another example of a value-priced wine that is really good and easy to enjoy.

No, we didn’t have a steak with the Steak House wine; but we did enjoy some awesome pasta and veggies . . . which, with some garlic helped make the wine a perfect pairing for tonight’s dinner.  So, here we are – 199 days into our quest and within the past three nights we’ve been from California to Texas to Washington – just another reason why trying different wines is more than just trying different wines . . . it’s about the journey to find the best wines from the best places at the best prices – and have a lot of fun in between!

Growing up we were taught that little things mean the most in life, and to this day, it’s been one of the most impactful that Brian can remember about dating Jean.  You know the old saying, ‘You never get a second chance to make a first impression.’?  Well, it’s a true today as it has ever been; Brian’s first impression of his soon to be extended family was that saying–something that has never been forgotten, and has been imitated with artwork in our home.  Funny how the little things stick . . . and others, that at the time seem so big and overwhelming, disappear into the woodwork!  Remember, Mi Casa Es Su Casa – we’ll leave the light on for you!

We hope that your Monday was a good one and also remember to enjoy your favorite wine responsibly and recycle whenever possible.


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