lummi island wine tasting sept 30 ’22

Hours this weekend: 4-6pm both Friday and Saturday

The autumn light and color continue to be  soothing as we enter October; COVID looks to be evolving into a manageable worldwide woe; and Jupiter is dazzling us every night with its once in a hundred years proximity brightness…all Good Things, and all very welcome!

Here at the wine shop we will continue to provide ventilation and air filtration during open hours, and ask that the unvaxed continue to find seating outside as weather permits.

ALSO… Please note: the wine shop will be closed next weekend, October 7-8  (except for Friday bread pickup)

 

Bread Pickup This Week

Pear Buckwheat – Begins with an overnight poolish preferment mixed the next day with bread flour and fresh milled buckwheat; the preferment allows the dough to begin to develop before the addition of toasted walnuts and dried pears soaked in white wine. – $5/loaf

French Country Bread  – A a rustic country loaf made with bread flour, fresh milled whole wheat, and and a bit of toasted wheat germ. After building the levain with a sourdough culture and mixing the final dough it gets a long cool overnight ferment in the refrigerator. This really allows the flavor to develop in this bread.   – $5/loaf

and mmm, pastry this week…

Rum Raisin Brioche: A delicious brioche dough full of eggs, butter and sugar. Filled with golden raisins and chunks of almond paste and (wait there’s more!) topped with a chocolate glaze before baking.- 2/$5

To get on the bread order list, click on the “Contact Us” link above and fill out the form. Each week’s bread menu is sent to the list each Sunday, for ordering by Tuesday, for pickup on Friday. Simple, right..? If you will be visiting the island and would like to order bread for your visit, at least a week’s notice is recommended for pickup the following Friday.

 

Wine of the Week: Radman Cellars Syrah    ’17      Washington     $27

https://static.wixstatic.com/media/6c71b5_3927d57156cc457f95c4576aa78f0f9f~mv2_d_2448_3264_s_4_2.jpg/v1/fill/w_503,h_670,al_c,q_80,usm_0.66_1.00_0.01,enc_auto/6c71b5_3927d57156cc457f95c4576aa78f0f9f~mv2_d_2448_3264_s_4_2.jpgA few years ago, pre-Covid I think, we were on a familiar pilgrimage to Oregon wine country, camped for several days at Champoeg State Park in St. Paul. The area is one of the first populated settlements at the north end of the Willamette Valley, in the heart of what is now “pinot noir” country.

Unobtrusively hidden across the road from the park are two of our favorite wineries, Sineann and Lady Hill. On this particular day we spent a good part of the afternoon in the Sineann “tasting room,” really just an open area in the winery barn. It was a warm afternoon, doors were open, and about a dozen of us were gathered around a couple of barrels that served as a “bar.” And there were flies buzzing around, lots of flies, so many that you kept your glass covered. Numerous fly swatters were deployed, including a couple of electric ones that zapped them with a little sizzle. Though it sounds horrible, the situation was  strangely festive.

It turned out that the woman (Lisa) who was managing the tasting that day, was also a winemaker with her own label: Radman Cellars. As I recall, the winery name is an anagram of her actual last name plus the R and the A. Or something like that. Anyway…we tasted two of her wines, a cab and a syrah. They were good, very good, and we came home with a case of the cab, made from (I think) fruit from Washington’s legendary Red Mountain AVA, known for its concentrated intensity and flavor.   … Philosophy

All you need to know is that “our people” who frequent the wine shop are generally thrifty, so a $20 bottle is a luxury, and anything more $$$ has to Really Ring some Bells. Therefore the fact that we sold most of that case at $40 each the first night we poured it tells its own story. We brought back another case a few months ago, and there may still be a few left. So this weekend we pouring the 2017 syrah. Come by and check it out!

 

Economics of the Heart: Republican Fascism Proudly Steps Out of the Closet

Mussolini seized full power 97 years ago: Does Donald Trump long to follow suit? | Salon.com

Benito Mussolini and Donald Trump (Photo illustration by Salon/Getty Images)

A lot of Republican politics in the past thirty years has been trending closely in the direction of Mussolinian fascism. We’ve all seen it, complained about it, tried to work with it, lamented it, and failed to name it for what it was, and is. Gingrich laid the foundation in the early 90’s, which led directly to the so-called Tea Party of the early 00’s. It then metastasized into McConnell’s sotto voce racist tactics in the Obama years and then directly to the hateful hyperbole of of the Tweetster’s slogan-rich MAGA rallies right out of the Mussolini playbook, which Hitler deeply admired and deliberately adopted. The  Fascis-ization process has correlated directly with the increasing prevalence and virulence of right-wing media and its thirty-year War on Facts.

Like the Italian fascist movement, MAGA mobilizes the masses through all available media, with repetitive slogans evoking hyper-nationalism, leader cultism, racism, and violence against vaguely defined social and political rivals. The enemies list– there is always an “enemies” list– includes Democrats, anyone not a Fundamentalist Christian, higher education, critical thinking, science, women’s rights…you know, all the things we used to consider the necessary prerequisites for an informed and empowered electorate in a literate, educated, egalitarian society. In case you hadn’t thought about it for a long time, We are those they referred to as their Posterity. Nowadays we fear there will not necessarily be any posterity for much longer.

Every day brings more revelations about the depth, breadth, and commitment of the movement to overturn Constitutional governance in our country, and yes, replace it with this new Fascism, firmly clutching Jesus on his Cross while loading their AR-15’s to keep women cranking out babies. Millions of Americans who consider themselves devout Christians have giddily embraced this new American fascism. There is no logic that can explain how a follower of the New Testament could support policies that deliberately cause suffering. And yet they do, day in and day out, all in the name of Jesus, he of the Sermon on the Mount.

The breadth and depth of the conspiracy to replace American democracy with a Republican-controlled neo-fascist state has been detailed rigorously over the past week in a series of prime time interviews with Denver Riggleman, an experienced data analysis consultant who has been working with the January 6 committee over the past year. His new book, “The Breach: The Untold Story of the Investigations into January 6th,” lays out in detail the clear and present danger to our democracy that the January 6 plotters still pose to our nation. (watch video)

Mussolini’s stated vision was for membership in his new fascist group to “commit all fascists to sabotaging the candidacies of the neutralists of all parties by any means necessary.” The ongoing revelations before us suggest that the conspiracy against the last election likely includes many more players at many more levels than we had imagined, is backed by very powerful players with very deep pockets, and is committed to making the United States a neo-fascist, racist, fundamentalist Christian state enforced by a white totalitarian elite.

Worst case scenario: the 2020 election conspiracy might be far deeper and wider than we have imagined, and chunks of our legal infrastructure might be unable to find the necessary prosecutorial traction. Hmm…what was that old saying about living in interesting times….?

 

This Week’s  Tasting Flight  $10

Natura Rose ’21    Chile        $12
Cold-soaked before pressing and cold-fermented on the skins to develop rich and nuanced aromas and flavors of grassy lime, tropical fruits, and lychee, with a crisp, lingering finish.

Dom. Les Gryphees Les Balmes Beaujolais  ’20    France   $ 17
From 100 yr old vines on a steep slope of limestone from ancient seashells, clay, and “pierres dorees,” the mineral-rich, golden chalk of Beaujolais); shows off this classic beaujolais style.

Radman Cellars Syrah    ’17      Washington     $27
Made in Oregon with Washington grapes; deep and dark, with concentrated aromas and mouthfilling flavors of fertile earth, dark plum, and umami that linger on the palate.

 

 

 

 

 

Wine Tasting

lummi island wine tasting sept 23-24 ’22

Hours this weekend: 4-6pm both Friday and Saturday

It has been quiet on the Island since Labor Day. Though it is not so quiet as the many recent Septembers when the car ferry has been in dry dock for annual maintenance, there is still noticeably less traffic, and the autumn light and color are soothing. Don’t know about you, but backing away from Covid restrictions still feels a little threatening after all this time (2 1/2 years!) of distancing.

Ne’ertheless, as we creep our way toward normalcy we will continue to provide ventilation and air filtration here at the shop, and ask that the unvaxed continue to find seating outside.

Weather this weekend will be 60-ish, with varying degrees of cloudiness Friday and a bit of sunshine Saturday.

 

Bread Pickup This Week

Multi Grain Levain – – Made with a sourdough culture and a flavorful mix of bread flour and fresh milled whole wheat and rye. A nice mixture of flax, sesame sunflower and pumpkin seeds and some polenta add great flavor and crunch. And just a little honey for some sweetness. A great all around bread that is full of flavor – $5/loaf

Polenta Levain –– Also made with a levain, aka sourdough, from a starter fed and built up over several days, then mixed with bread flour and polenta in the final dough mix. This bread is a nice rustic loaf with great corn flavor. – $5/loaf

and mmm, pastry this week…

Traditional Croissants – Made with both a sourdough levain and a prefermented dough – aka “old dough” where a portion of the flour, water, salt and yeast is fermented overnight. The final dough is then made with more flour, butter, milk and sugar, laminated with more butter before being cut and shaped into traditional french croissants. –2/$5

To get on the bread order list, click on the “Contact Us” link above and fill out the form. Each week’s bread menu is sent to the list each Sunday, for ordering by Tuesday, for pickup on Friday. Simple, right..? If you will be visiting the island and would like to order bread for your visit, at least a week’s notice is recommended for pickup the following Friday.

 

Wine of the Week: Ryan Patrick Rock Island Chardonnay ’20    Washington       $15

https://ryanpatrickwines.com/wp-content/uploads/2018_RP_Rock_Island_Chardonnay_print.pngRyan Patrick winery began as a small family winery in 1999. Founders Terry and Vivian Flanagan named the winery after their two sons, Ryan and Patrick. Ryan focused on learning vineyard management, and Patrick was training to become winemaker. Sadly, Patrick was lost to a car accident in 2004. The family continued making wine and marketing it through their tasting room in Leavenworth.

In 2012, the winery was acquired by growing Washington wine giant Milbrandt Vineyards, which already owned a number of brands and hundreds of acres of Washington vineyards. Vivian Flanagan manages the Milbrandt Leavenworth tasting room, and Ryan manages Milbrandt’s esteemed Evergreen vineyard near Quincy.

Clearly the winery has seen some evolution in its 20-year history. Current winemakers Joshua Maloney and Jeremy Santo have won several awards for the quality of their recent wines. This particular chardonnay strikes a nice balance between oaked and unoaked styles, and has become a favorite of many of our members in recent years, so chances are you’re gonna like it!

 

 

Economics of the Heart: When Chickens Forget the Way Home

Perch Importance: Chickens Need A Good Roost To Sleep

www.backyardchickencoops.com.au

It has been an eventful week for our nation as we head into the next national election. Several vectors of inquiry have coalesced into a lot of challenges for the Tweetster, so many that he is now claiming that as former President, he only needs a single thought to declassify a document…no need to say or write anything, it is all telepathic. Yes, he actually said that. 

He is suddenly facing a new set of legal challenges: colossal civil fraud charges in State court for his New York business practices that will likely lead to federal criminal charges, and two significant legal defeats with regard to his misappropriation of classified federal documents: one from Judge Dearie requiring him to decide whether to have his cake or to eat it, and one from the 11th Circuit that the FBI may use the documents in its ongoing criminal investigation. These woes are in addition to the long list of possible Federal and State charges associated with the coup attempt on January 6. 

One would think that even long-time Tweetster sycophants would start easing away from their spineless servitude to this huckster, but so far all the usual suspects continue to toe the line in his defense. There are rumors of some Republicans whispering concerns in the cloakroom, but still too afraid to back away from him publicly, so they don’t, and that is cause for serious head-scratching. Are they afraid incurring his wrath will banish them from his endorsement? Or that he will make public whatever dirt he has collected on them? Could it be that they actually Admire the man…??!! Have they not a shred of honor among them?

As we mused recently, the Supremes’ decision in Dobbs has drastically changed the election playing field this year, giving millions of young women a huge incentive to vote against all these white dudes who are taking away their most basic rights to manage their own bodies. These are many of the same guys who demand the right to infect anyone they want by asserting their right to bodily autonomy and refuse to get a vaccine during a global pandemic. We all see the obvious contradiction here, both men and women.

We mentioned last week that the outcomes of the November election will commit us to a course for our nation and the world with regard to everything we hold dear and depend on for our survival and well-being. Our everyday (but not to be taken for granted) rights and freedoms, the ongoing habitability of our planet, the availability of food and water, and increasing destructiveness of wind, rain, and floods– all of these will require a unified effort. Yet everything we still see in front of us says that because Republicans do not believe these challenges even exist, they condemn us all to making them worse.

So maybe the Tweetster was right about one thing: if we don’t get fight like He!! by getting out the pro-choice vote, we won’t have a country anymore…

 

This Week’s  Tasting Flight  $10

Ryan Patrick Rock Island Chardonnay ’20        Washington       $15
Aromas and flavors of wildflowers, crisp apples, honey, and cinnamon roll with a round, crisp,  body and a graceful finish of sumac-spiced croutons.

Angeline Cabernet Sauvignon ’20         California         $14
Deep garnet hue with aromas of lush cherry, cassis, and plum lead to rich cherry and plum flavors and lingering notes of vanilla and creamy oak.

Pomum Red ’16     Washington    $18
Carefully made Bordeaux blend of cab, cab franc, malbec, petite verdot, and merlot; aromas of red fruit-leather and exotic spices; flavors of black cherry, cranberry, and garrigue.

 

 

 

 

 

Wine Tasting

lummi island wine tasting sept 17-18 ’22

Notes for this weekend: 4-6pm both Friday and Saturday

Definitely feeling the season changing as we approach the Autumn Equinox next week…more gray skies, cooler winds, and the sights, sounds, and smells of lots of fallen leaves.

COVID continues to demand our individual attention, but Governor Inslee has announced the formal end of restrictions by the end of October. This coincides with (finally!) the establishment of relatively widespread immunity in our region. We will continue to provide ventilation and air filtration here at the shop, and ask that the unvaxed continue  find seating outside.

Weather this weekend will be 60-ish, with varying degrees of cloudiness, sunshine, and showers.

Photo at left is a bouquet from the extensive flower garden of our neighbor Colleen a couple of houses away. Occasionally in recent weeks she has had extra bouquets which we have made available on the deck at the wine shop during open hours. NOTE: bouquets will be available for sale during Friday’s tasting!

 

Bread Pickup This Week

Kamut Levain – Kamut, aka khorasan wheat, is an ancient, protein-rich grain discovered in a cave in Iran in the 70’s that many people who can’t tolerate wheat find more digestible. This bread is made with a levain that is fermented overnight before being mixed with with bread flour and fresh milled whole kamut flour. It has a nutty, rich flavor and makes a golden color loaf. A great all around bread – $5/loaf

Barley & Rye w/ Pumpkin Seeds – Made with a levain that was fermented overnight before the final dough was mixed with bread flour and fresh milled rye, barley, and whole wheat flours. Some buttermilk makes for a tender crumb, honey for sweetness, and toasted pumpkin seeds add to the flavor and texture. A really flavorful artisan loaf – $5/loaf

and mmm, pastry this week…

Chocolate Muffins – Rich and delicious, great chocolate flavor and an seductively moist texture: flour, brown sugar, sour cream, and eggs, with lotsa chocolate chips inside and sprinkled on top…AND…

Almond Poppy Seed Muffins – Another rich and delicious muffin…all the things that makes muffins good PLUS almond and poppy seeds instead of chocolate!

To get on the bread order list, click on the “Contact Us” link above and fill out the form. Each week’s bread menu is sent to the list each Sunday, for ordering by Tuesday, for pickup on Friday. Simple, right..? If you will be visiting the island and would like to order bread for your visit, at least a week’s notice is recommended for pickup the following Friday.

 

Wine of the Week: Rasa Occam’s Razor Red Columbia Valley  ’18        Washington     $22

Rasa Occam's Razor Red Blend 2018 - Avalon WineWith science degrees from MIT and Stanford, an enology degree from UC Davis, and as one of only a handful of “Masters of Wine” on the planet, Rasa winery founder/owner/winemaker Billo Naravane has a special knack for creating balanced, seamless varietal blends. His wines consistently display a perfect balance of texture, richness, personality, and flavors.

Each Rasa wine has its own name, specific varietal blend, and vineyard source. Each blend is sometimes repeated over several years, sometimes not, but each has a story to go with the name.

Occam’s Razor is named for William of Ockham, a 14th century Franciscan Friar and philosopher who coined this frequently quoted lex parsimoniae (law of parsimony), which postulates that other things being equal, the simplest answer to any question is likely to be the most correct. Lex parsimoniae is better known today as Occam’s Razor.

The wine name relates to the precision of the original blend in 2011. This current namesake is a much broader blend of 41% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Syrah, 9% Grenache, 8% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc, 4% Touriga Nacional, and 2% Petit Verdot…essentially blended from fruit not selected for the limited production wines.

See notes

 

Economics of the Heart: Wind Directions

Recently Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan spoke out in plain terms against the intrusions of the personal politics of the Conservative Court majority in many important recent decisions: “Judges create legitimacy problems for themselves … when it looks like they’re an extension of the political process or … imposing their own personal preferences.”

Kagan cited several examples from the past year’s docket that have severely damaged public confidence in this Court’s ability to make decisions consistent with both sound interpretation of the law and established precedent. Rather, she points out, many recent decisions override the long-established (originalist!) secular values enshrined in the Constitution with their own evangelical Christian superstitions on a broad range of issues. These include voting rights (Brnovich v. DNC),  the administrative authority of the Executive (West Virginia v. EPA), gun laws (New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen), flagrant thumb-on-the-scale allowance of school prayer on the football field (Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, Carson v. Makin), and public funding of religious private schools.

As public confidence in the Court plummets toward a 200-year low, self-righteous MAGA mavens whine their practiced victimhood screaming “she stepped on my toe!” against un-named”Democrat elites,” “liberal media” and “fake news.” And btw, while all of that is going on, there is an election coming up in a little over a month that could very well make for a short unhappy future of all Life on Earth. So this election is without a doubt the most important of our lifetimes.

There are some signs of Hope out there for the coming election, the brightest being the visible mobilization of American women for the coming election. The numbers suggest that women– especially young women– are registering to vote around the country in record numbers in response to Dobbs. In just a few months it has become clear that the only way women can assure their right to choose across the country is for Democrats to gain control of both houses of Congress in this year’s election and pass laws enshrining every woman’s right to choose. We should all do everything we can to help them get registered and to vote in those red states that have gone to such misogynistic lengths to make that so very difficult.

Several small breezes seem to be wafting in the right direction at the moment. Dobbs is motivating many more women to vote in this election than men; judicial investigations are increasingly threatening many Republican politicians who took part in the Jan 6 conspiracy; the J6 hearings/publicity are awakening at least some Maga supporters from their collective trance; many hard-won accomplishments of the Biden Administration are increasingly recognized and appreciated; and the same Ukraine that the Tweetster tried to extort is prevailing at the moment against its Russian invader with the strong international leadership of Not-So-Sleepy Joe. Not to mention that last-minute save on the rail strike today…!

Fingers crossed…

 

This Week’s  Tasting Flight  $10

Mas des Bressades Rosé ’21   France  $12
Bright and dry rosé from a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre, with a splash of Carignan and Cinsault. Lovely balance of bright red fruit and wild herbs, with a vibrant, spicy finish.

Parducci Small Lot Petite Sirah ’20      Mendocino    $15
Rich, dark, and full-bodied wine with dense blueberry and cocoa flavors, and tongue-coating, lingering soft tannins that give pleasing length to the saturated fruit flavors on the finish.

Rasa Occam’s Razor Red Columbia Valley  ’18        Washington     $22
Bouquet of blackberry and cassis, with nuances of spice, leather, vanilla, and espresso. Full-bodied palate shows suave tannins with rich notes of dark berries, black cherry, and vanilla with hints of cigar, chocolate, cedar, and spice.

 

 

 

 

 

Wine Tasting

lummi island wine tasting sep 9-10 ’22

Notes for this weekend: 4-6pm both Friday and Saturday

Looks like another beautiful weekend, mostly clear, highs around 70. And…for the first time in many years, the ferry will remain in service because this year drydock maintenance was performed in May, so it is logical to expect more visitors than during our typical reclusive September.

COVID continues to demand our individual attention. My college class just had our (I’m not making this up) 55th reunion last weekend, and many of us didn’t go because of COVID worries. Just got an email that lots of attending classmates are reporting that they did indeed come down with cases after they got home. So…although the newly released O variant vaccine promises to keep us inching toward “normalcy,”  we are all still in the risk management business.

Photo at left is a bouquet from the extensive flower garden of our neighbor Colleen a couple of houses away. Occasionally in recent weeks she has had extra bouquets which we have made available on the deck at the wine shop during open hours. We mention this because we really like having them around, the season is coming to a close, and we are hoping to have them available for our guests again over the next few weeks.

 

 

Bread Pickup This Week

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Breton Bread– Made with pre-fermented dough in which a portion of the flour, water, salt & yeast are mixed and fermented overnight before preparing the final dough, which incorporates the flavors of the French Breton region by using  buckwheat and rye flour and sel gris -the grey sea salt from the region that brings more mineral flavors to this bread. Goes great with meats and cheeses – $5/loaf

Spelt Levain — Spelt is an ancient grain with a nutty, slightly sweet flavor; it has gluten but it isn’t as strong as in modern wheat. This bread is made with a levain before the final dough is mixed with traditional bread flour, spelt flour, fresh milled whole spelt and rye. – $5/loaf

and pastry this week…

Brioche Almond Buns – Made with a delicious brioche dough full of eggs, butter and sugar. Rolled out and spread with an almond cream filling. The almond cream is a delicious creamy filling made fresh with even more butter, sugar, eggs, and almond flour. Yum! – 2/$5

To get on the bread order list, click on the “Contact Us” link above and fill out the form. Each week’s bread menu is sent to the list each Sunday, for ordering by Tuesday, for pickup on Friday. Simple, right..? If you will be visiting the island and would like to order bread for your visit, at least a week’s notice is recommended for pickup the following Friday.

 

Wines of the Week:  Cataclysm Chardonnay  ’20        Washington       $14

https://static1.squarespace.com/static/60cbf42729fe0541ef251597/t/60d9160c230d4a7c1ccf58c1/1624839693018/Cataclysm_2020_Chardonnay_Label_Front.jpgOver the years we have enjoyed and carried several wines from a long-established the Montinore winery in Oregon. The winery is one of only a few that is certified both biodynamic and organic, using practices and techniques that produce wines that are not only tasty, but also that sustain the vines and surrounding ecosystem with sound practices that maintain interdependent balance. The winery was established in 1982.

The Cataclysm Wine Company, on the other hand, is “brand” (snicker) new, with no history, no record, no details whatsoever about where exactly the wine was made, by whom, or where the fruit came from. There is, however, a substantial financial relationship between the owners of Cataclysm and the long-time owners of Montinore. We suspect that Montinore made the wine, probably at its main facility in Forest Grove, Oregon, as part of a larger financial arrangement that has allowed Montinore to expand its operations to the point where you cannot reach an actual human being on any of their telephones.

You can decide for yourself whether you like the wine or not, or care at all about its peculiar lack of a backstory. But for some of us, one look at their minimally informative website is enough to make us a little sorry we bought it in the first place. Maybe someday corporations will be able to get along without people at all so they can continue to rack up even more profits after our collective demise. Or, you know, maybe we are just in a cynical mood because of all the other crap that is going on…Sigh…

 

Economics of the Heart: The End of an Era

courtesy Liverpool Echo

She has been a reliable institution for all or most of the lives of everyone presently living. I was seven years old in 1953 when we watched some of the coronation (it went on for Hours!) on the primitive black and white television in our little living room. The pageantry was an endless parade of solemn pomp and ceremony, with unmistakable religious implications: the imposing, vaulted cathedral, the ornate costumes, the crowds, the horse-drawn carriages, the plodding formality.

We kids had no idea what a Coronation really meant, if anything, besides being a Big Deal. But we have learned what it meant by watching this then-young woman practice it every day of her life since then. For seventy years she was On Duty, day and night, the public face of a world-spanning Commonwealth. She hasn’t been just a queen, she has been The Queen to pretty much the entire world. We all feel, recognize, and grieve now for the passing of another Elizabethan Era.

This timing of her passing underscores the stark contrast between her long career of selfless service to Britain and the unrelentingly selfishness of our own Former Guy. One can’t even consider the two of them in a single thought without short-circuiting. She has been steady through a lifetime, lending strength to all of us, British or not, over all these decades.

By way of comparison, consider the Presidents of our country who have served during her reign: Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush 2, Obama, Former Guy, and Biden. It is a worthwhile exercise to go through the list and see which, if any, of her contemporary US Presidents measured up to her steady decorum, selflessness, and commitment…leaders we admired and took pride in.

Maybe a “Parliamentary Monarchy” offers distinct advantages for separating the functions of statecraft and government. As a symbol of centuries of British influence on the world and on the United States in particular, that model has served Britain very well. But at present it remains to be seen whether the British monarchy (or any other) will be able to survive very much longer in a world where reverence for a lifetime of service in general seems an increasingly scarce commodity.

Nowhere is this more evident than right here, right now in our own dear country, as divisive values, enmity, hostility, petty selfishness, and, oh yes, unbridled ego are continuously generated and amplified on public and social media. At a time when our country and the world must collaborate closely to manage increasingly catastrophic climate and humanitarian disasters, the selfish and the ignorant are doubling down to destroy the planet even faster.

One lesson we can take from the dignity, service, restraint, and commitment of Queen Elizabeth is that these are the glues that bind any nation together, that unite and guide its citizens to be their best selves. A current scan of our country, our media, our government, our judiciary, our Congress, our commerce, and our social institutions reveals a set of increasingly unbreachable divides, as when a large percentage of Americans seems to want every State to be able to legislate cruelty with no federal restrictions.

The passing of the Queen truly marks the end of an era in Western Civilization. We can all feel it. It’s not that she had any actual power to maintain all of civilization. But she symbolized, as no one else on the planet has, that each of us has a duty to make society work for everyone else. Modern politics and social media are products of undisciplined ego and the increasingly popular presumption of entitlement that goes with it. She demonstrated with every gesture that we all share a duty to serve each other and the living planet which which supports us all.

 

 

This Week’s  Tasting Flight  $10

Cataclysm Chardonnay ’20        Washington       $14    
Aromas of quince, pear, and custard; pleasing mouthfeel, easy to drink. Made with Washington fruit at an undisclosed location by undisclosed people in some kind of financial relationship with Montinore Estate in Oregon.

Rubino Oltreme Susamaniello  ’17     Italy    $14
Fresh, fragrant notes of cherries, pomegranate, raspberries and ripe plum; fruity, round and minerally, with soft tannins and rich flavors; a versatile pairing with richer dishes.

Daou Pessimist Red blend ’20       California  (Paso Robles)      $25
Full-bodied, rich and spicy, with balanced layers of elderberry and truffle with accents of cocoa, cardamom  eucalyptus, leather, tobacco, and grilled meat, alluring texture, and leisurely finish.

 

 

 

 

Wine Tasting