Posts Tagged ‘Italian’

La Castella Pinot Nero (Pinot Noir) (red) 2009

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

Sailing Time!  I’m late for the boat!  Thank goodness for the bicycle tourists.  158 bicycles today and the Sausalito Ferry is late unloading at the San Francisco Ferry Building!

It’s a picture perfect day . . . and every tourist stops and takes a photo of the SAN FRANCISCO sign on top of the Ferry Building.  Meanwhile, us commuters patiently await while the aggressively dressed hard bodied young tourist girls.  Today seems that Asia is the source of thin and willowy girl tourists with giggles like silver bells in the sunlight speaking a mixture of Japanese, Chinese and Tagalog . . . The last group on our commute was from Northern Europe, blonde, blonde and and occasional redhead with the throaty, hearty laughter speaking German, and Swedish!

As gracious regular riders of the Sausalito Ferry from the San Francisco Ferry Building we offer to take their picture . . . it’s so easy to be hospitable to beautiful girls whose laughter is a balm for even the most tired and care worn soul.

We live in the destination for beautiful gorgeous young women!

Tonight we’re trying a new wine, La Castella Pinot Nero (Pinot Noir) (red) 2009.  Before the boat casts off we open the bottle with a highly audible POP!  The young tourists look at us and smile.  We pour a libation in our commute group . . . a wonderful and soft wine ready to drink immediatey.  Very drinkable.

We enjoy the ride and the scenery around the boat and on the bay.

Life is Good!

Cheers, Willy

Available at BevMo at 2nd bottle for $0.05.

La Castella Pinot Nero (Pinot Noir) red - 2009

Epicuro – Nero d’Avola (red) 2009

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Party up, Party Down . . . Party time!

It’s a Birthday on a foggy, foggy day.  San Francisco is at it’s best.  the fog at ground level with the TransAmerica Pyramid sticking out!  The top of the Golden Gate Bridge emerges from the fog.

The party is on the 5:30  ferry from the San Francisco Ferry Building to Sausalito – Our regular commute, the world’s BEST commute!

We have a wine suitable for the occasion, Epicuro – Nero d’Avola (red) 2009.  This is a nice chewy red, not as heavy as cote de Rhone but still not a light wine.

One of us stopped at the bakeries in the Ferry Building, we have a beautiful cupcake for the tradition minded and a Cheese Wheel roll from Acme Bread for the more adventurous!

We open the bottle and the wine is good from the first pour.  After singing the appropriate song, we toast the birthday boy and cut the cupcake and Cheese Wheel!

Life is good!

Cheers, Willy

From Trader Joe’s

Epicuro (red) Nero d'Avola 2009

Archeo (Ruggero di Tasso) Nero d’Avola (red) 2008

Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

PARTY TIME!  We’re going to boogie, Boogie, BOOGIE!

We were on our way to a friend’s party, a fun and frolicking  potluck.  We live in San Francisco area and this is going to be a VERY international group (and a LOT of fun).  Most of the people at the party drink very little wine but the host has declared, “This is a wine themed party!”

We decide that we will bring a wine within reach, something very approachable both from cost and taste.  We are looking for a soft wine that comes in an attractive bottle.

The people work with number (accountants, etc.) but aspire to be Party Animals . . . they certainly get enthusiastic about these events!

The party is at night here in the San Francisco Bay Area and the night will be cold.  The food will come with many different spices, the piquant  (hot) of Thai and Indonesian, the garlic of Italian, the fish sauce of Vietnamese and heavy creams of Europe.  We decide a red with a tiny bit of pepper (hot like black pepper rather than vegetable like green peppers / capsicum).  It should be ready to drink and not offend anyone!  We hope by buying a wine under $5/bottle we can encourage people to discover wine.  We know the people will drink only a few glasses so we want our contribution to be a nice experience!

Archeo’s Nero d’Avola by Ruggero di Tasso certianly meets the bill.  It drinks well right after opening and goes down softly.  The bottle is beautiful, tall and stately with a gold label.  The wine is intensely red but smooth a very mild aftertaste (what wine people call finish).

This is a regular with my commute group on the Sausalito Ferry.

You can’t go wrong with Archeo’s Nero d’Avola by Ruggero di Tasso.

Life is good!

Cheers, Willy

From Trader Joe’s

Tommolo Montepulciano d’Abruzzo (red) non-vintage

Tuesday, September 20th, 2011

Decisions, decisions, decisions!  The weather forecast is unclear and ambiguous.  Sort of like every fortune teller!

San Francisco and Sausalito show sunny and warm . . . BUT the marine forecast is for chilly temperatures, fog and winds!

As Mark Twain said, “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.” or as another wag said, “You spend the day in your bikini but by 5:00 you’d trade your firstborn child for a set of long johns.”

I have epiphany!  Like a strike of lightning I know what to bring, Tommolo Montepulciano d’Abruzzo (red) non-vintage.

Montepulciano is a reliably nice wine and you can’t go wrong getting it for a tipple.  It’s on the edge of heavy but still soft and very drinkable.

I get to the 5:30 ferry from the San Francisco Ferry Building to Sausalito.  When we get on board and there’s a wonderful surprise!  Today was Farmer’s Market at the Ferry Building and we have a very nice crusty Acme bread, some hummus and a little sharp cheddar from Cow Girl Creamery.  Someone else has brought a roll that Acme Bread makes called a Cheese Wheel.  A flat roll with a center of melted cheese . . . Mmmm!

As we board the boat the air is warm and we look very different from the tourists.  Most of our group wear sweaters and or jackets while the tourists are dressed in shorts and tank tops.  We describe the young ladies as “aggressively dressed”!

We open our bottle of wine and share out the wine and the impromptu munchies.

We cast off and start across the San Francisco Bay.  As we pass Alcatraz there’s a sudden change in climate!  We enter a fog bank.  The fog is a solid wall, in just a few seconds we go from bright and warm sunlight to cold, chilling fog.

As we listen to the tourists freezing we’re so glad we’ve come equipted with the right wine, Tommolo Montepulciano d’Abruzzo !

Life is good.

Cheers, Willy

Bought at Trader Joe’s

Tommolo Montepulciano d'Abruzzo (red)

 

Gaitano D’Auino – Montepulciano D’Abruzzo (red) – 2009

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

I need a wine for the worlds greatest commute – our ferry ride from San Francisco to Sausalito . . . the weather is forecast as cold, wet with wind.  A typical foggy, foggy day on the San Francisco Bay.  No cat feet for San Francisco fog, the local name for one canyon says it all, Hurricane Gulch!

We’re on a hunt, an expedition for just the right thing.  We need  a nice chewy red that will go down easy.  Something that will fight off the foggy, foggy dew!

Eureka!  Just the thing!

A Montepulciano and one from Abruzzo (Montepulciano d’Abruzzo)!  I’m walking thru the wine section and see one of my favorites grapes and from it’s best region.  I’ve never had a bad Montepulciano!  This one I save for a brisk commute on the Sausalito Ferry.  We open and pour around the group – as expected there are smiles throughout!

We don’t even make to Alcatraz passage before it’s gone!  We pour our second round!  It’s just as good as we remember!

Feel free to buy and enjoy!

Cheers!

Gaitano D'Aquino - Montepulciano D'Abruzzo (red)

Cavit Pinot Grigio (white) – 2009

Friday, September 9th, 2011

We’re going up the Sacramento River to the town of Brentwood.  It’s early morning and we’re driving against the commute.  We’re driving in my convertible with the top down and wearing broad brimmed hats.  We’ve left early since the weather report says the temperature will be over 100 degrees and the sun is very bright.

In the trunk we have a cooler with a bottle of Cavit Pinot Grigio 2009 just waiting for lunch!

Brentwood is famous for the u-pick fruit orchards which my wife LOVES!  In addition, another couple I’ve known for years bought a house up there and we’re going up to visit them after we pick some fruit.  The drive is very scenic and we’re enjoying the day.

We stop and pick some peaches, apricots and nectarines.   The apricots are PERFECT.  The ones on the south side of the trees (the sunny side) have got a little pink blush and are ripe to perfection!  YUM!  We eat too many as we pick.  They must be handled carefully since they are SO ripe!

The nectarines are next.  The trees don’t have as much fruit but they are sweet and can be split open and eaten like a little in halves . . . like a donut (only healthier).

Peaches are last . . . finding them is HARD!  They’ve been picked over but the ones remaining are super ripe . . . eat now and they’re great.

We arrive at my buddies’ and they’re out on the boat dock fixing the railing.  The day is hot and we pitch in and get that part done.  My wife goes to the kitchen, cuts up some fruit and brings some glasses and a cork screw.

Cavit Pinot Grigio – on a hot day this refreshes and cools us.

We fire up the grill and cook some meat and corn.  They have a salad all ready.  We relax away the afternoon.

We are doing GREAT!

Note:  Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris are the same wine (Italian and French).  Mildly tart – think grapefruit that will relax and stimulate conversation.

Serve chilled right after opening.

Cheers!  Willy

Cavit Pinot Grigio

Epicuro Red – Aglianico from Italy (Beneventano)

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

Epicuro - Red Italian (Aglianico)

A strange name with a very nice wine.  Soft with a very nice bouquet.  Open and drink, no need to breath.

From Southern Italy (Beneventano), very, very dark grape (Aglianico means black).