Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Peaceful, Easy Feeling

Every so often the weather is perfect, and this evening certainly falls into that category. Those wonderful Canadians sent us a cold front last night that dropped the daily high temperature from 91 yesterday to 77 today. The front also pushed out all the humidity. This evening temperatures are already down into the mid 60 degree range. This is like Christmas in July.

To celebrate and enjoy I left work a little early and stopped at the market. I brought home two, Icelandic, lamb rib chops and tossed them on the grill. There were rosemary roasted potatoes to go with the chops; small, local redskin potatoes quartered and tossed with olive oil, salt and fresh rosemary and done in the oven until crisp on the outside and warm and soft on the inside. An ear of local corn completed the meal.

Pictured above is my first Gordon setter, Rob, who would have turned 30 this year. The old guy was totally crazy over lamb and would lie by the grill or in the kitchen and guard the grill or oven in case a burglar tried to make off with whatever part of a lamb was cooking. It was always a given that I could never live in the country with Rob because if he ever found out that lamb chops came from sheep he would have eaten a few. I always found it a shame that he died before they started selling lamb and rice dog food. He would have loved it. Even after all these years eating lamb still brings back happy memories of that old dog.

While the potatoes were roasting and the charcoal was working toward its peak I opened a 2006 Chateau Suau white Bordeaux. Crisp and sharp on the entry the wine had a mellow core to it and was perfect with a dip of goat cheese, scallions, hot sauce and flaked crab meat. Grass and figs were the main flavor profile. Nice finish and a good wine for $13. It's a simple white Bordeaux and is probably at its peak. I'll finish it tomorrow with a small piece of fish.

With the lamb there was a 2004 Kinkead Ridge, Ohio River Valley Cabernet Franc. Nice dark cherry fruit up front with hints of bright red cherries mixed in. Good acid and plenty of soft tannin to carry everything else along. Very balanced wine with a nice finish. It seemed a little short in the finish at first but the second glass - poured from a small decanter - solved that problem. The third glass was the best and was a perfect foil for the lamb. The fruit of the wine and the gaminess of the lamb were a great match. I have said it several times, but here it is again; it's wonderful to have a local, Ohio winery producing great wines that match with good food.

In honor of their great, great uncle Rob, Scott and Ellie got some lamb fat as an after dinner snack. My dessert was a small glass of 18 year old Caol Isla single malt whisky. Definitely like Christmas in July.


Anonymous said...

This wine won a double gold medal at American Wine Society competition... only two vinifera wines won this medal out of over 1000 entered. I wish we still had some! Your dog looked like a real sweet one! For dog lovers, check out Bill and Patti have usually six or seven dogs, mostly strays... us... we're cat people... we currently have six strays!

Nancy said...

The 2004 Cabernet Franc was rated one of Top 100 Exciting Wine Finds in the world in the 2008 Wine Report paperback, edited by Tom Stevenson, who also edits the New Sothebys Wine Encyclopedia.

Dan McGrew said...

The wine deserved a 'double gold.' Fortunately I still have two left that I will cellar for a time.

I've been breeding Gordon setters for 28 years, but I've also had two who were rescue dogs that had been abandoned by some fools. They are, and always have been, part of the family. The current two, Scott and Ellie, are not big cat fans but there's still room for everyone in the wor45ld (though I'm not sure they subscribe to that sentiment). :-)

Nancy, I'm well aware of the history of the wine. I hadn't opened one since I bought on release. It was such a great day yesterday I wanted something special. The 2004 CF certainly filled that order of the day.

Looking forward to Labor Day weekend and picking up some of this year's reds.