One of my favorite Monty Python skits involves a conversation between Michelangelo and the Pope concerning his painting “The Last Supper”. The Pope expresses his concern over the various inaccuracies of the painting, including Jello, the kangaroo, and the 28 disciples. Michelangelo offers a suggestion that perhaps this painting could be the “Penultimate Supper”. If there was a Last Supper there had to be a Penultimate Supper.
Tonight was my Penultimate Supper in Spain ~ promising to be more interesting than my Last Supper since that one will be a sandwich in a hotel room in Madrid.
The Penultimate Supper, of mostly tapas, was served with Cava and Rioja ~ it seemed a proper way to bid adieu to Spain (if you don’t mind me mixing metaphors).
The cava was Juve Y Camps Cinta Purpura (purple ribbon) ~ the Rioja a LAN Edición Limitada 2001.
I dislike writing about wines that I am drinking that we can’t get at the LCBO but there are several good choices available in Ontario. Bodegas LAN Reserva or Crianza is often available through Vintages (I keep a couple in my cellar but you can’t have those) and SEGURA VIUDAS BRUT RESERVA CAVA LCBO 158493 $ 14.55 is a great choice for cava.
Also, I love using the word Penultimate ~ a word that is often used here in Spain but only really used in Monty Python skits in the english language.
10,000 hits on pullthecork makes it the most read blog on my computer and the most talked about blog wherever I go. Time to celebrate with some Champagne writing.
This was posted in the online Mercury last week. I think it deserves a repost since many of you, like me, didn’t renew your subscription to the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry. It’s these kinds of studies keep that keep chemistry relevant. Oh and thanks to the staff at the Guelph Mercury for putting my blog button beside the Guelph Roadwork Update and under the Local Singles button. Nothing soothes like a Wine Blog when you’re mad at the City and can’t get a date.
I drank a great wine from Italy this week – Pio Cesare Barbera D’Alba 2008. I looked it up on the internet with the intent of learning more about the wine and maybe find a description of it. This is what the internet came up with …
” This wine announces its modern intentions with polished opening notes of vanilla, caramel and coffee from aging in small French oak barrels… “ 90 Points Wine Enthusiast.
This wine announces its modern intentions? What does it mean and why didn’t I think of it? I love it. I desperately want to use that in casual conversation and I still have no idea what it means! Modern intentions indeed. I guess that if I was in the mood for a wine with post-modern intentions I would have been disappointed.
Congratulations Wine Enthusiast on taking the level of wine descriptions to a new level.
The google search "Wine with modern intentions" produced this from Tim Burton from the Museum of Modern Art
I think I found the national past-time of Italians. Italians love to argue! Whether it’s over espresso (Lavazza or Illy), soccer (InterMilan or AC Milan), or the best foccaceria (the one here or the one two doors down from here), Italians love to have heated “discussions”. I don’t think it’s just my interpretation of watching them talk with their hands flying about – they love to argue. They really are kind, generous people so who am I to argue over their love of arguing. Our train stopped due to technical difficulties the other day. One older lady let the conductor know about it loud enough to entertain the rest of the riders. I’m not sure how to argue over a train’s technical difficulties but then again I am not Italian.
I’ve discovered I enjoy wines that are like Italians. I want my wine to be delicious but to fight back a little. I like that about the Bardolino that I am drinking. Bardolino is from the lake district (Lago di Garda) east of Milan near Verona. It has some nice berry flavours, is simple, but comes at you with a little edginess and tartness. I am coming home to try some of the LCBO’s bottles of Bardolino and see which ones I like fighting with ~ I will report on them early in September but if you want to try a couple and report to me I am ready to listen ~ and maybe argue with you.
Bardolino ~ you can't argue that this looks like a nice place to visit
This is something I got from my wife’s favorite food person ~ Nigella Lawson, the Food Network’s answer to a hungry Sophia Loren ~ and it is a great summer drink. I made it for our hosts here in Italy last night and now Donna and I are friends for life.
Juice 6 limes into a pitcher and then add a bottle of chilled sweet Prosecco (Italian “champagne”) ~ you can even use SPUMANTE BAMBINO LCBO $ 7.25 because it works just fine and it’s kinda fun for a wine blog to recommend Spumante Bambino. If you like your aperitif dry then use the VINO DEI POETI PROSECCO LCBO 897702 $ 11.45 ~ that’s the one I like using.
Don't forget to chill it first and don't forget the LIMES!
Rosé is always on display in Provence
Okay, I am officially enamoured with France – again.
There are three bakeries and a charcuterie within 100 metres of the house that we are renting in France, the baguettes are 90 Eurocents ~ and yes that does seem crazy to me too.
What is really incredible, from a wine lover’s perspective, is that there are 8 wine stores within a 5 minute radius of my house ~ walking radius. That doesn’t even include the cheese shops and specialty food stores that also sell a small selection of wine. The displays inside these stores is spectacular ~ see the evidence of this store that also specialized in Foie Gras.
Any bottle of Champagne over 3 feet tall gets my attention
3 L of Rosé ~ French eye candy
These photos are a quick reminder of a couple of things.
1. Enjoy chilled wine in the summer
2. Wine is not very serious when you drink it with potato chips
3. Wine isn’t supposed to be serious
4. Nobody in Provence cares what Robert Parker Jr. thinks