**The Blissful Adventurer is running about Italy at the moment so in his stead we happily endorse and support the work of the following blogger, Kim of The White Trash Gourmet. Please check out this post, leave comments for exchange with the author, and give their blog a read.**
For anyone that’s yet to discover me, I’m The White Trash Gourmet, and I cook better than you. I run a (wannabe) clever food blog from my quaint little town of California, but don’t expect health-oriented, vegan-friendly swill (famous vegan recipe: steam until grey). My cooking is based around three simple rules: if you can read this, you can cook; like college, don’t be afraid to experiment; and everything is made better with bacon. Follow them, and we shall bask in foodie goodness together.
Over the past few months, I’ve been asked to guest post on other blogs. But because I work for a living, and have more mouths to feed than the hydra, I’ve lacked the fortitude to follow through. When Michael wanted me to help hold down his fort while he gallivanted around Italy (to indulge in oenophile-related splendor), my first reaction was, “screw you if you aren’t taking me along.” Then he got himself Freshly Pressed, so I figured I could at least sponge off his success by faking it for a few paragraphs.
Unfortunately, I’m a food bitch—I’m only a wine bitch when I need the things I want to do to start sounding like a good idea. I’ve certainly come along way from my humble adolescent beginnings. I started with Boone’s Farm Strawberry Hill, then segued into the ranks of wine coolers (emphasis on rank). My early 20s saw me sipping white zinfandel (which of course made me a zinfandel to the Church of the Vine). As an adult, I’ve been partial to Pinots, Malbecs and Syrahs—almost always choosing red over white. Still, I know nothing of notes and undertones (beyond music), nor clarity and color (beyond diamonds). I can’t talk shop about regional nuances, and the most I know about the genealogy of the growers is that they’re all dead.
When Professor Housewright and I first broached the subject, I told him about my recent love affair with South American wines. “Oh, no” he cried, “California and South American wine is like the step children from a husband/wife you hate!” Apparently, I’m supposed to forgo the Americas altogether and look to the old country for my grapey goodness. So I challenged him, “fine, I’m brilliant and curious. Teach me about wine.” His first lesson for me? A bottle from Cote du Rhone.
Following that, I picked these beauties (each under $15 at BevMo):
The 2010 Cave de Monterail—I allowed it to breath for a bit (that’s what you do, right?) before taking a sip. I found it fairly overwhelming. The professor told me that I should have chilled it for about twenty minutes prior, and that would have reduced the “strong” smell. It was lovely with a bit of spicy eggplant, however. The food completely changed the flavor of the wine, mellowing it substantially.
Two nights later, I opened the 2009 Domaine Notre Dame de Cousignac. The professor has suggested this would be more my speed. He was correct. I even tried to look for color and clarity (in a non-gemological sense). It was a very dark garnet. No sediment or bits floating about. This was a cheat of sorts since it’s a Rhone wine, not Cote du Rhone.
Through these lessons, my aforementioned ignorance of wine was reinforced. But I’ll keep doing my homework like a good drunken student, and someday I’ll be the person you hate at Thanksgiving—it won’t be enough that I know about wine, you must, as well. A girl can hope.