Here are a few things that I learned during our 2021 Thanksgiving holiday celebrations and libations:
- It’s always best to have both of your kids around, and I was thankful and lucky enough that both of my daughters were at home when we broke bread over the holiday.
- I’m predictable (this will become more obvious when we talk about what we poured with Turkey Day in a minute or two).
- Bagged turkey might not be the superior turkey cooking method, but it is absolutely the best combination of tastiness vs. cooking effort extended (fight me!).
- I’m a very lucky (and grateful) guy to have Shannon as my partner (and Baby G. is lucky to have her as a mom).
Ok, and with that all out of the way… we cooked, we ate, we drank. Here’s the skinny on the latter! Also, you’re welcome for the inclusion of yet another baby pic!
Yeah, yeah, I know. Even I’m sick of hearing me talk about these guys. Having said that, I am growing increasingly convinced that there is no better crowd-pleasing, ageworthy, non-vintage Champers out there for the money at the moment. Again, fight me!
What this bold, berry-tinged rosé lacks in complexity it more than makes up for in food-friendliness and downright sexiness. It’s not subtle in its approach, but that mouthfeel is just pure seduction, and it helps that the quality level is up to par with Dutton-Goldfield’s normally astronomically high standards.
Popping open Blackbird’s flagship reds is starting to become a bit of a holiday tradition a the 1WD household, which would be an expensive proposition if I wasn’t in the fortunate position of getting these puppies as samples. The 2017 Paramour is an “embarrassment” of Oak Knoll riches. Being based on Cabernet Franc (a long- admitted personal favorite), the bramble and herbal spice notes that start peeking above the dark, plummy fruit horizon of this mouth-coater are a fantastic compliment to the complex graphite, oak, and tobacco action here. You could bypass all of that if you really wanted to (which I would decidedly recommend against doing) and just enjoy the sultry, smooth-as-silk mouthfeel, which is textbook high-end Napa and absolutely world-class.
Longtime 1WD readers are also likely sick of hearing me talk about this stellar Sicilian producer, and in particular this dessert label that helped put them on the fine wine map. Given that I attended the first retrospective tasting of Ben Ryé ever held by Donnafugata, I feel as though I’ve got a good handle on the vintage nuances of this gem. So I can tell you that 2017 is among the burliest and most potent-feeling Ben Ryé vintages in recent memory. The sultanas seem extra powerful, the marmalade a bit more pleasantly astringent (like it’s got extra bits of orange skin), the figs a bit more dried and concentrated. It’s a dessert wine for those who like their vinos big, bold, and offering no quarter.