7.10.2005

Who likes salt?

My bookclub just finished our latest book and there is a great quote from the book that I want to share:

“I sniffed the envelope before opening it. It smelled of a faraway city, pungent with anticipation for rain. If my Mesdames had not been in the room, I would have tasted it with my tongue. I was certain to find the familiar sting of salt, but what I needed to know was what kind: kitchen, sweat, tears or the sea.”

That is Binh speaking. He is a Vietnamese cook in the The Book of Salt, by Monique Truong. I was not crazy about this book, but at least I was able to get a quote from it that I like.

I'm quite a salt fanatic, as it is, which is why I picked this book in the first place. I found the book at a schoolyard sale, loved the title and bought it for a dollar. Then I convinced my bookclub that we should read it. Okay, it wasn't that great of book, but hey, you never know until you try.


6.16.2005

Quiz

I went to a major league baseball game last night and had quite a good time especially considering that this is not a field that I normally frequent. Can you guess the ball park from the picture below?

What will you win? I will write a blog about a topic of the winner's choice. Doesn't sound like much? I'm a new blogger. Please be easy on me, as any topic will be a challenge at this point.


Mystery Ball Park

6.15.2005

Wine Tasting 101

I received my first comment for this blog, yeah! And thanks to Alan, from whom the comment came. As a tribute to Alan, I thought I would address a few of the comments that he made.

I do understand the concept of not being able to tell the wines apart. That is a very natural reaction and feeling when first tasting wine, or tasting it infrequently. There are a few factors in maturing the palate, if you will, beyond that point.

1. Continue to drink wine frequently. (This one's easy.)

2. Keep track of the wines you are drinking, in addition to your thoughts and feelings when you taste the wine. You can also include comments that you've read about the wine and any particular rating the wine may have been given. You can also give it your own rating.

3. As you track thoughts and reactions to the wines, take note of similarities between areas (California, France, Italy). Once you can better tell the area, you can further break this down to similarities among regions, etc.

4. Always try new wines.

5. Going to tastings is best, because you can try a number of different wines and can start to tell differences between them when you taste many (in small portions) in the same evening.

6. Take a class. I've taken a couple of wine tasting classes before, but by far, the best class related to wine that I ever took before was earlier this year. A new wine and cheese shop down the street offered a class in wines and cheeses and the pairing of the two. Because I like red wine better than white, and because I don't eat red meat, I've always had red wine while I eat fish. No big deal right? Just because they say to drink white wine with fish doesn't mean I have to, right? Well what I learned in the class is how pairings of cheeses, specifically, with various wines can change how the wine and/or the cheese tastes. Furthermore, the complimenting (or not) between the two, can bring new tastes into the mix. I now love a full bodied red wine with stinky cheese. Stinky cheese by the way, is a new term that I learned in this class. Stinky refers to the smell, but NOT the taste. The cheese we had two nights ago is called Eppoises, a perfect stinky cheese. Good on its own, but GREAT with the right wine!

Yes, I've seen the movie Sideways, twice. I loved it. They were wine tasting in the Santa Barbara region.

If anyone has any other suggestions or tips for "maturing the palate" for wines, please pass them on to me and I will compile all answers for a future post.

Thanks for reading, and blog on,
Julie

6.12.2005

Trip to wine country...

We just got back from Napa Valley, tasted many wines and visited the following vineyards:

Cakebread
Chimney Rock
Stag's Leap
Frog's Leap
Opus One
Clos du Val
Louis Martini
V Sattui
Nickel and Nickel
Domaine Chandon
Heitz
ZD

As you can probably tell, my preference is typically reds, however this trip gave me a good appreciation for white wines as well, particularly Sauvignon Blanc. I did have a Chardonny at Cakebread that was very good. It didn't taste like the typical Chardonny that I am used to, so my mind was opened up a little.

Which wines do you like and why? Have you been to any of these vineyards?

Friday Night at Zanie's

Pure spontaneity drove us to the late show at Zanie's Comedy Club on Friday, walked up to the door and tickets were still available. We laughed a lot at the headliner, Randy Kagan. Try to catch him some time if you can.

Has anybody else seen Randy before? What did you think of him?



Sadie's mom has got it goin' on ...

There is a song called Stacy's Mom. I had to look up who the artist is..... Fountains of Wayne. This song was adopted by me in a rather silly way. My dog's name is Sadie (sounds like Stacy), I'm her mom, and well, some say, I've got it goin' on. Thus the URL for my blog.

Also included is a picture of Sadie. I'm still figuring out this blog thing. I meant to include Sadie's picture in this same post, but the picture jumped ahead of me. I'm sure you can figure it out.

For those unfamiliar with the song, here is a a link to the words.
http://www.reallyrics.com/Lyrics/F001400030003.asp

I was trying to figure out how to put the actual audio to the song on this post, but I haven't gotten it to work yet. Most of you have probably heard the song though, right? Sadie and I have a lot of fun with it.

Let me know what you think of this song..... thumbs up or thumbs down? Or never heard it?

6.11.2005


This is Sadie.... Posted by Hello

first posting

This is my first posting. I don't have any intentions yet for this blog, so we'll see what happens.