Qué Syrah and Pinot Noir! Olson Ogden Wines

This beautiful small lot Syrah is opaque, an inky purple with gorgeous ripe fruit. Blueberries, blackberries and rich baking spices on the nose, reminded Joe of a succulent pie. Once in the mouth, we tasted more of the blackberry and blueberry flavors, brown sugar and cloves, with a nice toasty oak on a finish that ended in gobs of fruit, spice, vanilla and velvety tannins.

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In defense of decadence

“Decadence is a difficult word to use since it has become little more than a term of abuse applied by critics to anything they do not yet understand or which seems to differ from their moral concepts.” -Ernest Hemingway Writing about food and wine means that there will be times when it becomes necessary to pause and consider the value of the subject matter. Surely there are more important subjects to write about. The world […]

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Thanksgiving: It’s Not Always about the Food

Thanksgiving in our family is always a dilemma — Joe wants to host everyone at our house, and my brother wants to host everyone at his. Before my father died, it was always at my parents’ house. My mother would slave over the stove all day, invariably wearing herself out. We would have enough food to feed half the neighborhood with plenty of leftovers. My mother grew up poor, so she has this special relationship with food.

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Perfect turkey brine – for Thanksgiving

I published this recipe last year. It was also how I served the very best turkey I have ever eaten last Thanksgiving, so I figured it was worth repeating. I hope everyone enjoys it. I think that most home chefs have gotten the word that brining is a crucial step when cooking turkey. If not, they should. Brining your bird brings flavor, texture, and most importantly, moisture to the table. If you are already hip […]

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Easy Holiday Banana Bread

I like my bananas a little green. My family doesn’t. But sometimes our bananas get way too ripe to be eaten alone. What to do? Make Banana Bread! My mom used to make hers in a coffee can. Lucky for me, there are perfectly sized loaf pans available. But not all pans are created equal! If you select a glass bake ware pan or a dark, non-stick pan, reduce the oven temperature of your recipes […]

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Turkey and Cannellini beans with Terlato Pinot Grigio

The other night I came home to the usual question of  “What are you fixing for dinner?” As I had not gone to the grocery store in quite some time, and had been pulling things out of the freezer and the pantry to see what I could make for almost a week, it was a question that I was having a very difficult time answering. Not wanting to get back in my car and driving […]

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Wine Tasting Clubs: Solving the Mystery One Glass at a Time

I had heard my husband talk about Iris for weeks during his ISG studies but didn’t meet her until the class got together for a holiday party last December. Many of the students had obtained part-time pouring gigs at local Houston wine bars. But we found ourselves at Iris’ tastings most often—because she was pouring on weekends and her bubbly personality is just so hard to resist.

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