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Reflections and Judgements … and Chilli

I feel kind of bad when we buy wine that isn’t great.  I wonder if anyone reading this gets put off by the negativity.  But when we started this thing, it was meant to be a journal of wines that we’ve tried – wines that we liked, and wines that we didn’t like – so that we’d know what to buy again and what to avoid.  This was a concern we discussed this week with our guest, Karen.  (There: I’ve put you in the blog, Karen.  NOW GIVE ME BACK MY DOG!)

Wines we’ve hated:  Estampa Estate – not reviewed.  See?  A Zero Bottle wine that we didn’t bother slashing to bits.  Suffices to say, it sucked.  It was like drinking wine-flavoured cough syrup.  Blech.  Wolf Blass, Yellow Label, Chardonnay – not terribly good.  Described as a bottle of pee.  Very disappointing.  Blackstone Winemaker’s Select.  Have you ever noticed that whenever the words “Select,” “Quality,” or “Dignity” are used, they never describe the product they name?  Dignity … I love this word in conjunction with products of any kind – typically reserved for products sold to the elderly, and one that I appropriated for the leash that Cara tried to use when Caia was little.  I dubbed it: The Dignity Harness.  “Your toddler can’t escape, and strangers can’t help judging you for using it!”  Quality Inn: the only thing quality about a hotel that uses the word “quality” in their name is their knowledge of what words trick people into believing them.  Winemaker’s Select: I strongly DOUBT that any true winemaker would SELECT this wine for anything other than to put it on a sponge to give to a man on a cross.  Sacrilegious?  Yes.  False?  Hardly.

Wines we’ve loved: Yarrunga Field – Three Bottles.  Altos de Tamaron – Two-and-a-Half Bottles.  No° 99, Wayne Gretzky Estates – Two-and-a-Half Bottles.  We have loved.  We have lived.

Some wines we’ve enjoyed – others not so much.  Sometimes, you need to be critical.  Sometimes you need to be complimentary.  That’s life.

This week, we did not love the wines we chose.  We loved the food we made.  But not the wine.

On The Menu: Corn Bread Muffins, Chilli Con Carne, Strawberry Cake

The food was great and it was what we needed.  Comfort food for a rainy Sunday with family.  Food that sticks to your ribs, as my grandfather would say.  Food that keeps you sane.

And after the week we had, we needed it.  We suffered through a toddler’s cold, a plant fire at two in the morning, a week filled with ten plus hour work days, insomnia, and a paper-cut.  We made it through, but only barely.  The thought of making some elaborate dinner brought tears to Megan’s eyes and made me punch a hole through a canoe.  That never happened, but I could if wanted to.

I made the chilli; Megan made the corn bread and the cake.  Megan’s corn bread complimented the chilli very nicely.  Made with jalapenos and banana peppers, there was a soft, sweet heat to them that cut through the corn and made your mouth hum.

The chilli I made in one pot using ground and cubed beef with lots of fat, yellow and red bell peppers, tomatoes, onions, and love.  Lots of love.  And cumin.  Lots of cumin.

Wine: Alma Mora, Cabernet Sauvignon, San Juan, Argentina, 2008, $105 MXN
Rating: One Bottle

The problem with this wine was that it bored us.  There was no real flavour to it.  Kind of fruity, pretty salty, and with tannins that kind of sneak up on you.  And … that’s pretty much it.  For the money, I would rather drink something else.  Concha y Toro, say.

(Sorry, Jorge.)

Wine: Monte Xanic, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Valle de Guadalupe, Baja California, Mexico, 2006, $360 MXN
Rating: One-and-a-Half Bottles

A heavier wine, but also more pleasant.  Softer tannins, but with a bitter finish.  Oaky, which Megan doesn’t like, but I don’t mind in a red.  Less fruity than the first.  Still … meh.

At this point, I have no idea what next week will bring us.  Hopefully not locusts, but who knows.  Send us positive vibes.

Until then,

Cheers!

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2 responses »

  1. Where do you get the monte xanic wines?

    Reply
    • Monte Xanic makes wines readily available in Mexico. Chedraui, Mega, Walmart, Sam’s Club, City Club, Costco, and Europea all carry Monte Xanic. If you live in the States or Canada, I am not sure where you can pick them up. If you visit their website, http://www.montexanic.com.mx/, you should be able to ask them if they have distribution outside of Mexico.

      Cheers!

      Reply

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