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Ding! Dong! The Witch Is Dead!

The wicked witch of God-awful wines is dead.  Lying, in a brown, melted, shapeless mass, all over the kitchen floor …

… And not a week too soon.  Wine is meant to be enjoyed, not used as punishment.  Wine is also meant to be enjoyed in the company of guests.  We had guests over this week.  Guests who enjoy beer and vodka.  Which was nice, since it meant more wine for us.

Dinner was fun this week, too.  Though we were somewhat delayed by … bears … and … ninjas …

On The Menu: Barbeque Chicken with Smokehouse Dry Rub (Williams-Sonoma), Summer Salad, Rosemary-Infused Wild Rice, Peaches & Cream

Dinner, while delayed by the ursus arctos horribilis and the ninjas volantes awesomus*, was delicious and fun.  We took it easy, making our guests wait, enjoying simple conversation about bats and narcolepsy and comic books.  And while we puttered in the kitchen, we enjoyed the first bottle of the night.

Wine: Cantaburros, Crianza, Ribera del Duero, Spain, 2004, $244 MXN
Rating: Two-And-A-Half-Bottles

This plummy and sweet little number got our taste buds going while we prepared the evening repast.  There is a lot of depth and complexity to this wine.  We think.  When you first breathe it in, there is a bite on the nose, but the wine itself is smooth and not at all bitey. It sits upon the tongue like a pensive gargoyle, fending off the lesser demons, yet silencing your better angels.  It protects your mouth from inferior flavours while keeping it jealously for its own.  It is a very pleasant, misty night kind of wine.  Perfect for sitting around with friends and talking about prison.  (Why were we talking about prison?  I don’t know.  Why do people talk about anything these days?  We’re all going to drown soon.  On account of the Global Warming.)

Our friends James and Claudia were visiting us all the way from downtown Playa del Carmen.  We were also talking about sci-fi, mosquitos (because there are a billion of them here right now), and drastic changes in life-style.  Don’t roll your eyes.  I quit caffeine about six months ago.  You try it.  Dare ya’.  Thought so.  (Chicken.)

Dinner was enjoyed by all.  We shared some jokes (none of which I can share here because Cara made me promise to stop swearing online, so I have to at least cut back for one week).  We shared some dreams.  We swapped Royal Wedding stories, like, “Do you think Kate is pretty?” and “Straw poll: will Charles inherit the throne or will it go straight to William?”

Oh yeah: James is British.

With this, we positively needed to open another bottle, and so we did.

Wine: Bodegas Fontana, Querçus, Tempranillo, Spain, 2006, $573 MXN
Rating: Two-And-A-Half-Bottles

This, too, was a very good wine.  It had been weeks, honestly, since we’d had a night like this, where every wine we picked was a winner.  After our crotch-punchingly bad experience in Budget Town last week, thank you sweetie, I decided to splurge and give us something to drink about.  (Sounds like a threat in an Irish home, doesn’t it?  “Stop dat snivvlin’ or aye’ll give ye sum’tin ter drink abaht!  Toor-a-loor-a-loor-a …”)  This Tempranillo had a peppery, musky flavour to it.  Of the earth, yet not dirty.  It finishes clean, while still giving you something to mull over.  It’s hard to place it’s flavour.  It dances around your mouth — very different from our brooding friend from earlier.  This was a very nice wine to have with dessert.

Which is when James and Claudia had to go.  The night had worn on too long and they both needed to bed for their sleeps.  Which was nice, since it meant more for us.

I got the recipe from Jamie Oliver.  Peaches, peeled and crushed, soaked in bourbon (I used Jameson’s) and covered in a mix of whipped cream and custard.  It was amazing.  I slept like a piggy.  Which is to say, with equal amounts of satisfaction and stomach discomfort.

Next week … who knows?  We’re almost there at this point.  If I ever figure out Twitter like an adult, or a tween, maybe we’ll tweet an entire night so that you can all share in the madness.  In a post like this, where I sit and write it out, I can take out the crabby parts (“When should I put on the chicken?”  “When I’m done with the salad!  God!”  “Don’t speak to me like that!”  “Well, don’t ask me the same effing question eight times!”  “SHUT UP!!”) and Megan can take pretty pretty pictures and you can all think it must  have gone smoother than we make it sound.  It doesn’t, but bless you for thinking it.

Yes.  Twitter.

Till next week,


*Honestly: it’s the heat.  I swear to Jebus, it’s fifty-six-thousand degrees here right now.  You can’t move without taking a break to talk about the heat like an boring neighbour.  The kitchen is so hot that it’s all I can do from putting my bum in the freezer.


5 responses »

  1. aye, it sounds like the home i remember. after the awful wine you two, emphases on two , deserve the wine. i don’t know how you manage the heat and put out such beautiful food. Kudos to the cooks!

  2. Salley Fanion

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  4. Marco Della Motta

    Great post!!! Not only was it fun and very funny to read, but it also made me want to drink–not just taste–the two Spanish wines featured. I haven’t tasted a lot of Ribera del Duero wines but whenever I have, I’ve thus far not been disappointed in the least.


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