Thursday, September 27, 2007
On a long road trip, lost, hungry and craving a great burger, I stumble upon my Shangri-La...
As summer drew to a close, I found myself on the road in search of adventure but found myself in wine country. I couldn't complain, having just left the Hanford Nuclear site (I was looking for WMDs) my journey brought me to the quaint Washington town so very nice they named it twice, Walla Walla. Located in the heart of the United States best grape growing region (even people in Napa have to agree) Walla Walla is the prefect destination of a weary traveler. Plenty of wine, food and logging.
Upon arriving all I wanted was food, preferably a cheese burger. After asking around consensus was,(it only took a couple people) "the place" to get a burger in Walla Walla was the Ice Burg. Which, from the look of things, was true. The parking lot of this old-time drive-in was packed. Luckily I had prepared myself to wait because it was worth it. Good burgers, great shakes, definitely a place to visit again. But what makes the story better is where my journey took me next.
Chatting with the locals as I wolfed down some burgers I learned the owners of the Ice Burg know more than just how to flip burgers. A like-minded soul in the parking lot poured me a glass of Tamarack Cellars Firehouse Red 2005 and shared the story. As I drank in the wine's nose, beautiful and borders on exotic, my parking lot companion began explained the history of wine making in Walla Walla. There was a time when a handful of people made wine in the region. It turns out that the wine is was now enjoying was one. After taking a sip of the beautiful blend which offers ripe, sweet fruit, complex flavors, and a stylish elegance, that statement was easy to believe. Only a person intimate with the region could make such a fabulous wine. I spilled a bit of wine in surprised disbelief as the story went on. As the dark ruby colored stain set, my companion revealed that the owner of the "Burg" and the vintner responsible for the Tamarack Cellars Firehouse Red 2005 are the same.
This I thought was my Heaven on earth. Where my passions collide and I'm allowed to wallow in the resulting pleasure. I love wine and enjoy the comfort of a great good burger. My trip couldn't have been planned any better. Nothing is more entertaining than hunting for adventure and finding it with a burger, some wine and served over interesting conversation. Needless to say, if I was hosting a cheese burger challenge, Tamarack Cellars wines would be up to the challenge. You never know where life will take you, just hope along the way you discover superior wine. Thanks Tamarack Cellars.
Monday, September 17, 2007
Wine holds a wonderful power of bringing people together. Time with friends shared by wine is truly one of life's great pleasures. Amazingly though, it is not only with friends that wine can be enjoyed. Many times I've found myself in the mist of controversial debate with perfect strangers, the only thing holding the difficult conversation together, a superior glass of wine. I once again found myself in such a situation awaiting a table for dinner. The current debate was what to do with the recently sold Bond record-breaking home run ball. The wine that kept me enthralled, Rubicon Estate Cask Cabernet Sauvignon 2003.
As I watched my wine bottle passed from one stranger to another I heard the rambling of personal thoughts of what should be done with the ball, Barry himself and the entire game of major league baseball. As points were raised and counter points suggested, my focused wavered from slight interest, to football season and finally settling on a desire to get one more glass of this wine. The intense flavors surrounded the pallet with layer upon layer of ripe, red cherries, plum, vanilla, cocoa, and toast.
My new friends continued their conversation as I slipped into a debate with myself. Per value I wondered, which of the Rubicon Estate wines that I recently enjoyed brought me the greatest joy. Each has a wonderful taste bond by a beautiful structure helping both wines earn high ratings in my book and the powers of the wine-rating world. My own question seemed answer as the muse of the original debate finally made its way back into my own hands. With the last drops of Rubicon Estate Cask Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 racing my glass it all seemed so very clear.
Conversations, experience, timing and even luck always play a part in how one feels about a wine. So when forced to ponder the greatness of great compared to the excellence of excellent the debate can seem unsettlable. Rather then falling into the trap of absolutes, I chose to recall the perfection of my prior Rubicon experience after I fully enjoy the pleasures of the present one. Just like the debate over what to do with the homerun ball, I decided it’s a silly debate best suited for others to sort out. I'm content to drink my wine and chalk up one more memorable experience.
Thursday, September 13, 2007
...and give me another drink while you're at it.
Don't insult my intellegence with lies or threaten me with terror, you have no credibility left. Don't hide behind General Petraeus. I can't get drunk enough to believe you anymore Mr. Bush. You have our troops lock-up in Iraq. While they fight and die for us, you use their sacrifice for political gain. (What happened to Pat Tillman?) And when they finally get out of Iraq, seemingly in the only way they can, in a coffin, you still are yet to meet with them and bare witness to the mess you have created.
How dare you make a photo-op of "Mission Accomplished" and then continue to order troops to the front line which is still so dangerous that you wouldn't dare send your own daughters to the area. Not to mention how on your own visits you sneak in and out like a theft, coward.
Now you call for America and the world to believe in "Return to Success", HA! F@$% you for even trying. By your own definition this new strategy as you put it allows our troops to return home according to the success we achieve. Again you trap them in a quagmire of your creating. Doomed to a mission with continued futility, means you doom our troops to continue to temped fate in Iraq. How much blood will it take? This coming from a boy who hide from his own call to duty, you Mr. Bush sure are willing to force others to serve.
Stuck in the Big House know as Iraq, I more then support our troops, I pray for them. Please Lord, smight this madman so we might bring our troops home.