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Where wine is on the table everyday

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Day 254 – Mom’s Are The Best!

Oyster Bay Sauv BlancAs Sundays go, today was a good one!  Following yesterday’s graduation of nephew, Ryan from Texas A&M, the family met at Messina Hof for Brunch, and although it was terrific time to celebrate the accomplishments of the college graduates, it was also the perfect venue to celebrate Mother’s Day.  Whether it was contrived by Hallmark or not, Mother’s Day has become one of the largest holidays in terms of cards sold, flowers purchased and brunches attended!  Arriving home mid to late afternoon, we prepped for a visit from P&L–which meant trying something new with them.

Mother’s Day is probably one of the more significant holiday’s on the calendar.  First, it let’s US celebrate OUR Mom’s and thank them for the gifts that they have given us over the years.  But, the other part of Mother’s Day, and perhaps even more significant, is the celebration of our spouses–who have brought our kids into the world!  Yes, we know that you can’t have one without the other, but being parents for two awesome kids, it happens because of their Mom!  Brian and his Mom watched a little bit of a show this morning called CBS Sunday Morning where the story centered around couples who had chosen to NOT have children.  Within their calm demeanor and specific comments, was a thought process of justification.  Yes, we know that there are people in the world who can’t or won’t have kids.  We get that.  But, the hard part for us–and we are biased because we have kids–is why they feel justified to explain their position?  We didn’t explain our position to HAVE children.  So, why do we need to get their position to NOT have children?  Just not totally sure about that one.

Our wine tonight is a 2012 Oyster Bay Sauvignon Blanc from Marlbourough New Zealand.  Yep, this wine was the perfect touch to a Mother’s Day Sunday afternoon. . .Pale  green in color with brilliant clarity, Oyster Bay Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc is zesty and aromatic with lots of lively, penetrating fruit characters. A concentration of tropical and gooseberry flavors with an abundant bouquet, it is a wine that is always crisp, elegant and refreshing.  We liked the crispness of the fruit–some grapefruit and lavender–together with a clean almost apricot finish!  When sitting on the deck…on a beautiful Sunday afternoon with virtually no humidity…a really  nice white wine is a perfect way to spend the time.  Sharing it with friends and Daughter #2 makes it even better.

This wine has been rated as high as 87 points and at less than $10 a bottle, it’s a terrific value for the money.  We like wines that taste good, look good, have character and are priced for wine lovers who are on a budget.  This Sauv Blanc fits the bill to a tee!  We loved the minerality, the fruitiness and the finish on this wine, and would really have enjoyed it with some spicy food–if not for such a beautiful day enjoyed outside on the deck!  Made even better by Mother’s Day. . .it brought back memories of two very special moments back in 1991 and 1993 that have forever made our lives better, and given us the focus to help them make the world a better place.  We hope that YOU celebrated your Mother’s Day in the best way possible, and hope that you enjoyed it with your favorite wine.  Please remember to enjoy it responsibly and recycle whenever possible.

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Day 160: Birthday Wishes . . .

Castiglioni ChiantiHistory.  It teaches us.  It reminds us. It brings us back.  It also makes us smile.  Twenty-two years ago today . . . yes, that would be 1991 . . . we welcomed the newest member of the family.  (No. . .it wasn’t another dog–or a cat for that matter!)  Daughter #1 came into this world 22 years ago today and for the record – Motown was cranked up in the background, and as parents go – just being a little biased – we were smitten from the moment she came into this world.  She doesn’t know it, but Brian was there to hold her first . . . to weigh her . . . to help put her next to her Mom.  It was in one word – AWESOME!  It brings tears to his eyes to this day.  For Mom, the incredible joy of holding a daughter – gave her a sense of  what it must have been like for her Mom 31 years before.  Life Is Amazing when you sit back and think about it.

And, what becomes of a young lady who clearly and completely stole our hearts?  Who was clearly in control as a baby – but didn’t know it?  With both parents working, memories flood back to rocking in the chair with the bottle in hand while one gets ready for work and then the roles are switched as we prepare the diaper bag, plenty of bottles for the day, all of the ‘In Case of Emergency’ notes . . . and then, BAM off to daycare.  Could it be that six weeks went by like a blink of an eye?  Yes it did – and so did the next 22 years.  Rolling over, crawling, the first steps  . . . they all come so fast – and ONLY ONCE!!  Special moments?  You’d better believe it.  Little things like that are taken for granted – maybe even ignored today, but we craved the chance to see the one or two things that – once they happened – we’d NEVER see them again.  If you stop and think about it, the number of these amazing – once in a lifetime opportunities that our children give us-are lost in the day-to-day living and GONE forever.  Learning how to use a spoon, learning how to take her first steps, learning to talk (at 10 months and it hasn’t stopped yet!!!!) these are the little miracles that are laid before our feet as parents and what we CHOOSE to do with them, remains in our hearts for the rest of our lives.  And that’s before BARNEY!!!

Because what happens next is life – yep, kindergarten, grade school, girl scouts (thanks, Mom), middle school, boys . . . and then CELL PHONES, iPods, parties, friends,high school, jobs, driver’s training, driver’s license (YIKES!), cars, boys, dates, concerts, and suddenly – – – graduation!  The train gets going so fast that we forget to enjoy the ride.  We forget to let the horn blare out – – – this is OUR KID!  And–so we stop and take a deep breath and SMILE.

Today, 22 years ago . . . our family started . . . and THE FAMILY is getting better and better each and every day!

We needed to break out a wine that was special for today, so we found a really nice, but young (funny how that works!), 2010 Castiglioni Chianti, in honor of Daughter #1’s birthday and a remembrance of her trip to Italy this past May.  Since the wine was so young (hmmm, common theme developing here), we decided to decanter it while we created an amazing feast of corn tortillas, lightly fried in oil to give them a fine crunch; paired with the finest of prepared cheese and diced tomatoes with green chiles.  It was a feast that could only be made better by a fine wine.  Funny as it may seem, this wine was delicious.  It was fruity–as you’d expect from a young chianti, but it also had structure and body that reminded us of bigger, bolder wines.  Decantering the wine gave it a chance to open up and the aroma was superb.  From the wine maker, “The color is a purple red with violet reflections. On the nose, cherry is prevalent followed by strawberry and raspberry with floral sensations of rose and classic sugared almond. The palate is soft, warm, vinous, pleasantly balanced. The finish is persistent, with round notes that return to cherry in the aftertaste.” 

Normally,  we laugh at reviews like this, but in the case of this wine – SPOT ON! At a price less than $15 a bottle ( on sale) you’ll be  hard-pressed to find an Italian wine that’s this good and yet so young.  We’ve enjoyed big-dog Barolo’s for way more money, but in the short term they couldn’t measure up to this Chianti.  You might want to get a hold of this wine before it gets better as it ages – and that means the price will keep going UP!

Birthday wishes . . . to Daughter #1.  You came into our lives at the perfect moment in time – – as laid out by the Good Lord.  And, even though your parents brought you home from the hospital – laid you down on the couch (next to Calvert The Dog) and proceeded to look at each other and wonder when the parents were going to come home to claim you!  YOU have grown into an AMAZING young woman with a passion for life and a gift that can only be appreciated by those who LOVE YOU.  Cheers Lo!  We Love You!

If you have a son or daughter, raise a glass to them, because they are our future – your future – and you gave them your world!

Enjoy your favorite wine responsibly and remember to recycle whenever possible.