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Where wine is on the table everyday


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Day 289: Fathers Are Home Grown . . .

Home GrownAh, Sunday – and what a special one it is.  Today isn’t just any Sunday – it’s Father’s Day. . . which for the record rates right up there with most national holidays.  Fathers are pretty darn special people – some guys are birth fathers and some guys regard children that come into their lives as their own . . . in both cases any man who takes on the responsibility for raising a child is awesome.

Today was a busy day leading up to a great Linner (late lunch, early dinner) with both Brian and Jean’s Dad, Bill around the table.  Daughter #1 and Bruce Wayne rounded out the participants and a great time was had by all.  Prior to enjoying some grilled steaks, roasted potatoes, asparagus and sautéed mushrooms, we spent the late morning into early afternoon powerwashing the Bondy Deck – think we are going to discover quite a few unused muscles protesting when we awake in the morning.  Must admit, it does really look nice – now we just have to figure out about staining it . . . sounds like a visit to Home Depot is in the making!  For the record, we love, love, love Home Depot and given the dollar amount of purchases over the last 30 years are pretty sure they love, love, love us as well.

Tonight we opened a 2011 Barbera from Home Grown Family Harvest in Barbera from California.  Ok, so we found this wine at Central Market on South Lamar and it just kinda sorta jumped in the cart.  We’ve never heard of this winery and truth be told had to go to their website to learn more . . . and what a fun website it is.  Here is what is on their ABOUT page –

Grown on misty cliffs, near a mysterious ocean, where the fog is cold, and the nights are perplexing, and the terroir is confusing, and the women are complicated but the men love them anyway, and the elves dance under the blah de bah de blah . . . . .

Ok, no hogwash: we created Home Grown Farms because we wanted an everyday table wine with some soul. We felt an obligation to rescue the American week-night wine from its castration-by-corporation and bring it back to the farm. It’s SO HAPPY here!! You should see the smile on its face and the trot in its boots. . . And now that it has rolled around in the the sweet hay awhile, we’re ready to share it with you: weeknight wine with a little mud on its shoes.

Family-style, folks. The wine equivalent of a warm blanket or a deep belly laugh. Because things are just better when they’re Home Grown. After all . . .even Elvis went on the air in a shirt that his mother made . . .

As usual, we digress – the wine was really fun.  Not too much of a nose – but very nice and fruity on the palate and finish.  It wasn’t a heavy wine, more to the light side – but not too light.  Really hard to put into words – just an overall good wine.  All around the table agreed that it did open up and get more of a backbone and shook off its skinny legs for some “been at the gym” ones.  We also all agreed it would make the Bondy Deck Wine list, but maybe not the Top Ten.

Would we buy again – YES!  In fact, we have to buy at least five more bottle so we can participate a giveaway we found on their website –  Redeem your corks!  While we’re making our Home Grown out on the farm, we sometimes get to thinking some deep thoughts, you know, like the meaning of life, or the smell of a peach, or the size of pumpkins in Kansas. We’ve written our best guesses at Life’s Great Mystery (and how it relates to wine) on 9 of our corks. As you enjoy the nectar of Home Grown”s Family Harvest Red, you can ponder our musings. Then, put them in a drawer. Because if you collect six of them (6 different ones) we’ll send you a Home Grown Farms t-shirt. And, once you are wearing your t-shirt and feel inspired to do your own navel gazing, hop over to the box on the right and submit your own home grown philosophy of life.

As we wrap up another Father’s Day – be thankful for yours . . . regardless of the situation – remember although you may think he is Superman . . . he is just human – but, always there for you whether in person or in spirit.  He gave you life and you are part of him – embrace him and all his goodness (and sometimes not so goodness).  Remember to tell him you love him – he’ll hear you wherever he is.

As we raise a glass to toast father’s everywhere, remember to enjoy responsible and recycle whenever possible.


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Day 288 – Whatever Happened to the Truant Officer?

truant-fourvinesWhew…what a day!  After a terrific early morning with coffee and bacon and eggs. . .we headed north to Austin to take care of some ‘Father’s Day’ business.  Of course, we couldn’t go to the north and NOT stop at an Austin landmark for a bite of lunch–so–we ended up at Threadgill’s for lunch and Wow–what a cool place.  For those of you born,raised or transplanted to Austin, you already know about the myriad of amazing places to eat, drink and enjoy great music–BUT, if you’ve never been to Threadgill’s–well, you haven’t been to Austin!  While a Saturday afternoon is hardly prime time for an establishment with historic roots, just being there conjures up memories of artists, looking for a break, playing for pennies just for a chance to be ‘discovered’!

Having spent a fair number of years in the Kerrville area, we always appreciate this time of the year–well, actually, we’re a little past this time of year–the Kerrville Folk Festival concluded LAST weekend, and the three weeks of music there was something to behold.  What we like most about the Festival–isn’t the musicians–or the campground–or the parking–it’s the theater where much of the music is played—-it’s the Threadgill Theater, and we wondered if it was the same Threadgill as the Austin landmark. . .anyone care to help a friend???

We’ve made two trips to Paso Robles, California, and to this day, one of our favorite labels is Four Vines.  There was a split–a change in ownership–a change in personnel–a change in direction a few years ago, so the wine maker has changed, but our love for Four Vines has never wavered.  So, when we came across a Four Vines, Truant at the Twin Liquors in Kyle not too long ago, we were mesmerized.  Could it be that they were embarking on something new and different?  With a price point under $9 a bottle, this was reminiscent of the Old Vines Cuvee’ that they had marketed for years.  Even then, the wine had great taste for a little amount of money!

So, tonight, we get to introduce the newest member of the Four Vines family – Truant Zinfandel!  What many over the years simply called their OVC—now, has a name and wine character just like Biker, Maverick and The Sophisticate. Truant, blended from multiple appellations throughout California, now has its an identity. The name Truant describes someone who slips away from the confines of everyday routine, and also refers to their wine making style which is not limited by geographical confines. Not only is it blended from vineyards around California, but it is 77% Zinfandel, 13% Syrah, 5% Petite Sirah, 3% Barbera and 2% Sangiovese. . . in short, it’s a PERFECT blend for those of us who have grown to LOVE blends. On the nose there are dark berry notes and spicy notes from oak aging. The wine drinks of juicy blackberry, ripe plums and a touch of blueberry. Generous in fruit flavors, plenty of structure and a velvety finish.  It’s a wine that could be enjoyed on the deck after a long day–or poured with some excruciatingly spicy food for dinner.  Regardless, don’t let the low price fool  you, this is a wine that is worthy of a second, third and fourth look!

As Saturday gives way to Sunday–Father’s Day–we stop to salute and thank all of the Dads’ out there who care enough to play a crucial role in the development of their children.  While most folks agree it takes a village to raise a child—conventional wisdom still tells us it takes parents to raise a child.  So, remember tomorrow—DAD—hug your kids, kiss your kids, thank the Good Lord for what you have, and let your family shower you with attention.  Strong Dad’s are in short supply–stand up–be counted–Love your family.  Enjoy your favorite wine responsibly and remember to recycle whenever possible.