One Of The Better Pairings…

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A great wine paired with a great dinner is something that never gets old.  As a matter of fact it can always feel new, can feel fresh, and can feel inspired if you well, feel it.

Easy said and easy done…

It doesn’t get more authentic than a great pasta dish paired with a great Italian wine.  An added  bonus is when the wine is affordable yet so great for the price, that you almost might feel guilty.  Don’t.  It’s good to find the best deals in anything without having to look too hard.

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The 2015 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo from Masciarelli is one of those wines that you’re going to find in a lot of places, and hopefully you’ve had the good fortune of trying it.  Sadly for me, it’s one of those wines (like many others) that I always see and unintentionally would take for granted.  It’s not deliberate.  There’s just so many great wines to try that while we have all the time in the world, it’s important to make the most of it.  And that goes for everything.

You’re going to taste your berries, cherries, and various spices but for a wine like this, like many others, that’s just one part of the story.  What’s most important is this a wine you’re going to enjoy?  Both things, among others, are connected.  I can safely say the answer yes.  Yes this is a wine that’s accessible, approachable, and affordable.  Those are some great things that start with the letter ‘a’.

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It’s also your typical wine you’ll find served at Italian restaurants, which in turn means great Italian meals and dinners, and could easily be served at an all around amazing feast near you.  I can imagine that it’s being served at a dinner near you, near me, and all around the world, as I write this, and as you read this.  It’s that versatile and that awesome of a wine.  There’s another ‘a” for you!

As it gets colder, the medium and fuller bodied wines are going to take shape.  Thankfully this is right in the middle of what could also feel like a light wine, depending on the meal, your mood, and the season.   Those are the fun details that can make a good wine into a great wine, and a good meal into an exceptional one.  This is so fun.

I mentioned affordable.  I’ve seen this wine sold for anywhere from $9-$12, and that’s a steal.   This tastes like a $15+ wine to me.  It may be for the aura it carries, the aura I sense, or just my gut reaction to it.  Your gut will always be your guide and never steer you wrong.

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What a great pairing of wine and food this was.  My meal was just as beautiful as it looks.  This was comfort at it’s most comfortable and beautiful.

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As we head towards the holidays, these are the kind of meals you’re going to encounter more if you haven’t already.  These are the wines that go with them, and hopefully you surround yourself with the best company as well.

I’m grateful to have shared this with a friend, and look forward to many more exciting times to come, before, during, and after the holidays.  It’s still early November, so one glass, and one meal at a time…

Peace Be With You.

Love,

Ideen

Free Spirit

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I love art, especially when it’s near my backyard.  Baltimore has plenty of galleries and museums at little to no cost to you, for your viewing pleasure.  How many of us take advantage of this?  I can say with most certainty,  I don’t give myself the opportunity to expose myself to more art and more culture than I really should.

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The Alchemy of Art embodies what a passion and love for your craft is truly all about.  The owner, Sheridan Costa, has made this one of the places to be in Fells Point, and Baltimore for that matter.  Best of all, it’s free to attend.  What else is best?  Well there’s lots of arts, lots of crafts, and lots of gems that fit just about everyone’s budget.

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And you know what else is cool?  They throw lots of charming parties and events.  And these are some of the most authentic and laid back parties I’ve attended in the city. There’s a great mix of people from all walks of life.  And when we’re under this roof, we’re all here for the same reason, to appreciate art and to appreciate one another’s company.

Good parties usually means good food.  And good food segues into good wine, and vice versa.

The longstanding sentiment for me with The Alchemy and anywhere that throws a soiree is to try to bring something.  Never come empty handed.  Luckily, there is a wine and spirits shop caddy-corner to the gallery.

It’s now become tradition for my friends and I to find affordable bottles of wine for purchase and take that short walk to gallery.  If we run out, it’s just seconds away. And the store has extended hours compared to most shoppes, so we have no excuses!

Last Thursday was special.  It was Alchemy’s third anniversary party.   Time is flying.  I don’t know how long I’ve been fortunate enough to visit.  It hasn’t been the entire three years, but it’s been a significant part.   And the gallery is getting better by the year, and better by each visit.

We were told there would be loads of cupcakes and foods.  So vino is necessary.  This time I was feeling sentimental (that tends to be every week) and wanted a wine with animals on the label.  For no reason, other than I love animals and animals on a wine label.  Yes, chickens!

The 2015 Vintage from La Vieille Ferme Rouge fits the bill as am everyday wine, for so many reasons.   First of all, the price I was able to find it at was $9.00.  That’s a no-brainer.  You see a bottle like this at this rate, you grab it, you bring it to a party and everyone will love you.  Actually if you were invited someone must love you anyways to some extent, so the wine will be an added bonus.

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This Rhone Blend has some spice and some kick to it. There’s something dark about it. It’s almost akin to eating a piece of dark chocolate.  Well in that similar vein, there were plenty of cupcakes at this party, so hopefully someone got to sip this wine with a chocolate or another enticing cupcake.   My wine never had a chance.  It was decimated in minutes.

Even though I didn’t harvest the grapes, or be involved in the fermentation or bottling process, it feels good when other friends and folks finish what you brought to a party.  A little piece of me feels alright.

This wine will resonate.  It has this distinct taste that separates itself from similar red and Rhone blends you would find at bargain prices.  It’s a bitter taste but it’s a good one. There’s nothing extraordinary or life changing about this wine, but it brings much to the table, aside from the price.

And I’ve seen this wine everywhere.   And as low as $7.00.   So if any of you are interested, it’s a standard label that might be at your neighborhood store.

Here are the tasting notes.  And even some more over here.

I look forward to their next party.   There’s a good vibe, with good people, and plenty of awesome things on display and for purchase.  I’ve included pictures throughout this post.

If you’re interested in learning more, the Alchemy of Art’s contact info can be found here.

They throw a good party near the holidays, so hopefully this will be revisited. And they deserve multiple visits.

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Support art and support local.  Yes!

Ideen