MWWC #35: Eclipse

The Epicurious Texan

On August 21, 2017, the United States saw something it has not seen in nearly a century: a total solar eclipse path traveling across the entire continental United States.  The last time any of the mainland United States was able to see a total solar eclipse was 1979–and that was only for a handful of northwestern states.

In case you’re a bit confused why I’m talking about the recent solar eclipse during a Monthly Wine Writing Challenge–don’t panic!  It’s because this month’s topic, as selected by last month’s winner, Erik of Red, White, and Cru is eclipse.  Thankfully, Jeff extended the original deadline because well, between an emergency appendectomy for me and a urinary tract blockage and 8-day hospital stay for the cat, I’ve barely looked at my laptop let alone opened it and (gasp!) actually written something!

Before I start in on the wine writing part of this…

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Dinner on a Bridge (#MWWC35)

Appetite for Wine

The weather was perfect; sunny with temperatures in the low-80’s as the event started. We were fortunate to be there. This is one of the most anticipated events in Sacramento. It is so popular in fact, that tickets are sold by lottery. I’ve wanted to go in the past, but have not been able to attend. However, this year, for the Fifth Annual Farm-to-Fork Tower Bridge Dinner, I won tickets in a sweepstakes hosted by the Golden 1 Credit Union, one of the sponsors of the dinner.

If you read my previous post, you know that Sacramento, California, is the Farm-to-Fork Capital of America. As part of the annual festivities, the Tower Bridge Dinner brings together farmers, farm workers, renown chefs, local celebrities, politicians, and foodies of all stripes, for an epic and magical evening. Dinner on a bridge! The Tower Bridge is an iconic landmark in Sacramento, spanning the Sacramento river from Downtown to the…

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MWWC#35: Eclipse

The Wine Raconteur

“Charleston was once the rage, uh huh
History has turned the page, uh huh
The minis skirts, the current thing, uh huh
Teenybopper is our newborn king, uh huh”

A musical introduction for the latest Monthly Wine Writing Challenge and this is the thirty-fifth entry, but somehow, I missed one, so it is my thirty-fourth entry. Erik of “Red, White and Cru” had the honor of winning the last time and his award is to pick the theme for the newest challenge and his word is “eclipse.” Now last month the eclipse was one of the hottest topics in the media, as well as Social Media, so it makes sense.  How does one link eclipse to wine? I went to my dictionary that is a focal point in the library and looked up the word, yes, I could have just used Google, but I predate Google and when I wanted…

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Drinking to Remember: Memory and Wine #MWWC34

WAYWARD WINE

Memory and wine make odd bedfellows.  We drink to forget, right?  Those hangovers from downing two buck chuck definitely did not build more gray matter.  That second (or third) bottle certainly wiped out a few evenings.

But good wine, hell, even just unique wine, can be a time machine.

Just today, while showing bottles to restaurants, begging them to buy anything, I opened a near-forgotten favorite: Aurélien Verdet’s, Le Prieuré, Hautes-Côtes de Nuits.  This 2014 Pinot Noir costs $33.  The appellation lacks prestige, coming from a soil-stripped, wind-swept, hill top in Burgundy, France.  The best fruit grows midslope.  But this little 10 acre Le Prieuré vineyard matters.  It went AB Organic in 1971. Ten years later, Aurélien was born. He grew up tending it, inherited it in 2005, has grown his holdings, and continues to make brilliant things.

Aurelian Verdet Hautes Cotes de Nuits Pinot 2014

But today, while I rattled off those facts to a wine buyer…

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Memories of the Oenophile

Talk-A-Vino

If you search the Internet, you will find plenty of references to the medical benefits of the moderate wine consumption – for your heart, blood pressure, cholesterol level, and among other things, memory. It seems that jury is still out on the wine and memory – some say it helps, some say it works the opposite way – I guess it depends on who pays for the research and researcher’s personal view on alcohol – oops, let’s avoid the rant trap, and so let’s leave all the medical stuff aside.

Wine and memory are connected on many different levels. In the most direct terms, mastering the world of wine will greatly tax your memory. Yes, anything humans do connects to memory. But think about thousands and thousands of producers in each and every wine region – the more names you remember, the easier it is for you to make a…

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Lessons from a Biodynamic Winemaker in France

L'OCCASION

I take a notes like a squirrel on the bird feeder – fast and and full, getting it all down before someone changes the subject. You’ll know me by my notebooks.

More often than not, however, the stuff that really sticks with me doesn’t require a scribble. My memory serves in certain moments where everything just makes sense, when it links up with something in my genetic code and delivers clarity.  This happened last year when I met the SAUREL family at their fifth-generation domaine, Montirius in Sarrians, which is located near Gigondas in Provence, France. The name Montirius contains part of the surname of each of Christine and Eric Saurel’s children: MON (Manon) – TI (Justine) – RIUS (Marius).

Provence Wine, Rhone Wine, Biodynamic Wine Erik SAUREL and his daughter Manon share the story of making biodynamic wine in Provence. Credit: Jill Barth

The Montirius Way

The SAUREL family runs a completely biodynamic shop. “Our…

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Thanks for the Memories – #MWWC34

Appetite for Wine

I am certainly glad I read Jeff The Drunken Cyclist’s Saturday Reminders post this morning. In his post, Jeff offers an ominous warning that the deadline for this month’s Monthly Wine Writing Challenge (#MWWC34), is this Monday! The theme for the challenge this month is “Memory.” Had it not been for Jeff’s nudge, I may have forgotten to write my entry! (See what I did there?)memoryHow embarrassing would it have been for me to forget to write my post, since the theme, Memory, was my idea! As the winner of last month’s challenge (a heartfelt thank you to all who voted for my entry), I had the honor and distinction of selecting this month’s theme. I had originally proposed “Memories”, because I have many fond memories of many great wines, and I was interested to hear about the wine memories of other bloggers. However in a discussion with…

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