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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Fringe Benefits

My interest in my sorry excuse for a freelance career is waning as I get busier and the market dries up. One publication that I wrote for semi-regularly is on its way to folding. But the premiere issue of Fringe Magazine released earlier this week, and my article on up and coming songwriter, Jaclyn James, is on page 39, right beside Mr. Dave Barnes. Ch-ch-check it out. I won't lie...I'm kind of pumped, and just slightly motivated.

Last night was my mid-week vino break at Fido. Several of the wines we sampled were meant to be illustrative, rather than enjoyed. For example, we sampled a fortified wine from South Africa, called Weltevrede Golden Muscat. The wine is meant to be served during the dessert course, but I hated it--as it is cloyingly sweet. Imagine fermenting yellow raisins and candied orange peel, and you come out with something similar to cough syrup. But, it was nice to at least try the wine and gain some knowledge about fortified wines.

My favorites?

Cassone La Florencia Chardonnay from Mendoza, Argentina
This lighly oaked white had a perfect balance of sweetness, with a creamy hint of vanilla. It was delightful. And that's all I have to say about that.

Vinedo de los Vinedos Tannat from Atlantida, Uruguay
My wine instructor chose this wine to teach us about tannins, plant polyphenols that cause a dry and puckery feeling in the mouth following consumption of a red wine or unripened fruit. For instance, when you drink either iced or hot tea, the last few sips are dry and bitter, as the tannins have settled to the bottom. In wine, tannins come from the grape skins. A tannat grape is one of the best examples of a wine rich in tannins. My instructor illustrated the effect of this wine as a "fat tongue."

Dierberg Syrah from Santa Ynez, California
This wine is ranked in the top ten of American Syrah in 2009 by three different publications: Wine Spectator, Wine Advocate, and Wine Enthusiast. As with most Syrah varieties that I love, this wine was dry, smooth, and overflowing with dark cacao, coffee and sweet spices.

Our Menu:

Grilled Peaches with Caramel Dressing, garnished with parmesan, mint and basil
Local Zucchini and Squash, stuffed with Kentucky Gouda and Fennel
Chorizo, Beef and Veggie Burger with Fig and Artichoke Mayonnaise on house-made Poppyseed Sourdough Roll
Home Fries with Sea Salt and fresh Garlic
Gingerbread Tea Cake filled with Lemon Curd, drizzled with Balsamic Reduction

I leave tomorrow for Louisville, for my annual author signing stint at the Southern Baptist Convention. I'm sure it will be a jolly good time, replete of three-piece suits, beards, and good ol' fashioned conservativism. I will have a lot of time to blog, but not a lot to blog about. Afterall, it is Louisville...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't let Patrick see you hate on Louisville! There is lots to do there. It's actually very artsy. Call us for ideas. :)--Tina

8:15 AM

Blogger Natrudy said...

I LOVED reading your article. I'm so proud of you MAB. You are fabulous all-around.

12:54 PM

Blogger emmysue said...

Great article...so proud of you!

3:00 PM


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