lummi island wine tasting jan 22 ’21

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Bread This Week

Poolish Ale – the preferment here is a poolish, made with bread flour, a bit of yeast and a nice ale beer for the liquid and fermented overnight. Mixed the next day with bread flour and fresh milled whole wheat. This makes a great all around bread with a nice crisp crust – $5/loaf

Buckwheat Walnut & Honey – a flavorful artisan bread also made with a poolish, fresh milled buckwheat and bread flour. Buckwheat is not a grain it is actually a seed and closer in the plant family to rhubarb and sorrel than to wheat and contains no gluten. Buckwheat has an earthy flavor that in this bread is balanced with a little honey. Some toasted walnuts add a nice crunch. This bread goes well with meats and cheeses – $5/loaf

Individual Cinnamon Rolls – These are made with a rich sweet roll dough that is full of eggs, butter and sugar. The dough is rolled out, spread with pastry cream and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar. Then rolled up and sliced into individual rolls for baking. Then topped off with a cream cheese glaze. And boy are they delicious!! I can only make a limited number so get your order in early so you don’t lose out – 2/$5.

 

Wine of the Week: Penley Phoenix Cabernet

A bouquet of dark, berried, inky fruit with plenty of sawdusty/smoky oak. While it’s warm with alcohol it remains smooth, supple and persistent. It’s all blackcurrant, bay leaves and rich palate. Tannin is fine-grained. This is a complete and harmonious wine with great persistence of flavor. Bright and delicious.

Penley Estate Phoenix Cabernet Sauvignon ’17 Australia $18
The first vines were planted in Coonawarra in South Australia in 1890, predominantly shiraz. The terra rossa soil was quickly recognized as something special covering limestone and dolomite bedrock.

And yes, we will have a bottle open if you drop by!

 

 

 

 

Wine Emergencies…Who Ya Gonna Call?

While Covid continues to limit our movements and associations, we will continue to help you keep your wine shelves topped up. We know how it is…one minute your wine shelves are reassuringly stocked, and the very next day you reach for something and OMD, where did it all go?? It happens to all of us during these undifferentiated days and weeks of semi-quarantine.

But fear not, mis amigos! When a wine emergency strikes YOUR wine pantry, just click on the Order Wine link in the header above to browse our list of currently available wines with tasting notes and prices. When you have made your selections you can phone us with your order or email us using the Contact Us link above. We will confirm your order and make arrangements for pickup/delivery at your convenience. EZ-PZ!

 

 

 

 

Mar a Lago Update: And We Thought Nixon Was A Long National Nightmare…!

The last five years (including the 2016 primaries) have revolved around 24/7 chaos kept churning  by the now-silenced (!) Tweetster. Shhh….listenfor a moment, could it be…? Yes, the noise has stopped!  Order is being restored, and we find ourselves in a state of weary exhaustion, wrapped in warm blankets waiting for it all to make some kind of sense.

We have been thinking the last few days about the role of Populism in the rise of Trumpism. During the Primary Campaigns in 2015, we all noticed the curious parallels between the rise of Trump on the Right and Sanders on the Left. Both were mavericks from their party mainstreams, and drew wide support. Trump, already a media creation, drew constant press attention, while  Sanders, despite drawing huge crowds, got far less coverage than Trump or Hillary Clinton. The point here is that Populism was a big draw among voters on both sides, suggesting that a large swath of the population was dissatisfied with the direction of the country.

Populism generally arises from voter alienation from bread and butter economic issues and social hardships that cause resentment among the affected populace. As we discussed last week, the Tea Party had been active against Obama from the beginning, and Trump had already jumped on that bandwagon with his Birther conspiracy against Obama. It was only a few short steps from Birtherism to the need for a Border Wall.

Historically, right-wing populism has relied on the appeal of xenophobic and racist anger against the Other of the moment, whoever could be blamed for their fears and failures, their dwindling share of the pie. A good example is the Know-Nothing Party, “a xenophobic political movement that arose in the 1840s, in reaction to a huge influx of Irish Catholic and German immigrants.” Native-born Protestants saw these immigrants as job-stealing threats to their cultural and religious identity. Btw, as recently as the 1920’s my Mother’s Irish Catholic family in Maine experienced KKK cross burnings on their lawns.

Such groups also proliferated in Europe as Nazis and Fascists in the 1930’s. Clearly Donald Trump represented right-wing populism, inflaming his followers (all, ironically, including him, descendants of immigrants) against more recent immigrants.

Left-wing populism has generally expressed a desire for a more equitable sharing of the economic pie. William Jennings Bryan stoked such a national movement for decades around 1900. His work was eventually manifested in much of FDR’s New Deal, redistributing wealth and opportunity from richer to poorer, favoring unions, an eight-hour workday, women’s suffrage, and a progressive income tax. It is worth noting that Republicans who tout the “Good Old Days” of the Fifties always fail to mention that the New Deal still included a 90% marginal tax rate on the most wealthy, and yet the economy grew handsomely.

Today Trump is out and Biden is in. That’s very Good News, Hallelujah, brothers and sisters, for those of us on the Left. With the Miracle of Georgia’s two Senate seats, we have a narrow path to progress over the next two years for an agenda of equal opportunity, more equitable distribution of wealth and income, universal health care, and, perhaps most important, saving Life on Earth from Climate Extinction.

It’s a small and temporary opening against the formidable enemies of democracy we have seen clearly over the past three months. After two decades of Mitch McConnell’s lies we should take a lesson from legendary coach Vince Lombardi: Winning isn’t the Most Important Thing; Winning is the Only Thing.

 

 

 

 

 

Wine Tasting

lummi island wine tasting jan15 ’21

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Bread This Week

Pain au Levain – “Levain” is more familiat to Americans as sourdough. It’s made with a nice mix of bread flour and freshly milled whole wheat and rye flours. After building the sourdough over several days and then mixing the final dough the dough gets a long cool overnight ferment in the refrigerator. This really allows the flavor to develop in this bread. A great all around bread – $5/loaf

Cinnamon Raisin – Made with a poolish of bread and fresh milled whole rye flour fermented overnight before the final dough is mixed with bread flour and freshly milled whole wheat and rolled oats. Unlike a sugary cinnamon roll, this is a hearty rustic loaf with the cinnamon is mixed throughout the dough. Great for breakfast toast, even better for french toast.  – $5/loaf

 

Chocolate Babka Rolls – A rich pastry dough full of eggs, butter and sugar, rolled out, spread with a chocolate filling, rolled up and cut into individual rolls.  – 2/$5

 

Wine of the Week: Maryhill Winemaker’s Red ’16

Over the last decade Washington’s Maryhill Winery has been making more and more, and better and better wines. The winery is located at a “wide spot in the road” in the town of the same name on the Columbia River near Goldendale. The town has a fascinating history. Perched high on the north bank of the Columbia, the winery provides visitors with a panoramic view of the Columbia Gorge. Quite spectacular.

The winery produces some fifty different wines from vineyards across Eastern Washington. Therefore, like most large wineries, there is a lot of fruit left over after the best fruit is selected for flagship wines, the next best for its second tier, and so forth. Each year the leftover red juice is blended in many different combinations to find the best blend for that year’s juice, and put into the Winemaker’s Red. Similarly, the leftover white juice is blended into that year’s Winemaker’s White.

All of that results in wines that are tasty and inexpensive. And since we are devoted advocates of wines that offer a lot of quality per dollar, we often stock this wine.

We will be offering complimentary tastings of this wine during Bread Pickup!

Maryhill Winemaker’s Red ’16      Washington       $13

Ripe black fruit notes and a hint of fresh flowers are well backed by leather and cedar wood.
Maple bar and black fruit of currant and blackberry appear on entry, with a mid-palate
of rich tannins and a smooth finish.

 

 

Wine Emergencies…Who Ya Gonna Call?

While Covid continues to limit our movements and associations, we will continue to help you keep your wine shelves topped up. We know how it is…one minute your wine shelves are reassuringly stocked, and the very next day you reach for something and OMD, where did it all go?? It happens to all of us during these undifferentiated days and weeks of semi-quarantine.

But fear not, mis amigos! When a wine emergency strikes YOUR wine pantry, just click on the Order Wine link in the header above to browse our list of currently available wines with tasting notes and prices. When you have made your selections you can phone us with your order or email us using the Contact Us link above. We will confirm your order and make arrangements for pickup/delivery at your convenience. EZ-PZ!

 

 

 

 

Mar a Lago Update: Tea Party Grieves Loss of Mad Hatter

In 2011 A Pew Research study based on the 2010 mid-term national election showed that Tea Party supporters made up 41% of the electorate, and 86% of them voted for Republican House candidates in that year’s election. The study found that those who self-identified as Tea Party supporters not only had substantially more conservative views on taxation, government spending, and corporation rights than other Republicans, but also had more conservative views on abortion, immigration, and gun rights. It was a growing political force, dating back to Gingrich.

In 2018, Lawrence Rosenthal wrote a lengthy and absorbing piece for the Othering and Belonging Institute at Berkeley called
Trump, The Tea Party, The Republicans, and the Other.  The article clarifies and unifies a number of seemingly disparate trends we have all observed over the past four years…and which relate in a very real way to the finding noted above in 2010.

We all remember when Trump became a viable candidate in the Republican debates and began surging ahead in the polls. It was his promise to build The Wall that would keep out “those Mexican rapists and murderers” who were swarming across our Open Borders by the tens of thousands. This position was not something he made up. Rather, he learned it was the Tea Party’s No. 1 issue by listening to right-wing talk radio and hearing Tea Party Nation’s Judson Phllips say, “…amnesty is the defining issue. There is no middle ground. There cannot be any form of amnesty. We need a president who will put the interests of Americans first.”

And that was that. Trump is not without skills. He has been a professional con man his entire life. He was in his element. Everything after that was easy: he had the Tea Party, the new majority of Republican voters, in his pocket. In fact there was a report during his ascension in the polls when numerous supporters were interviewed. Curiously, they all dismissed everything he said except for one or two phrases that convinced them that He Understood their particular kind of pain. This kind of emotional salesmanship is the hallmark of a true psychopath, who unconsciously knows when to use the lure of carrot and threat of stick to elicit the desired behavior.

Later in the article Rosenthal discusses how, philosophically, the broader context of the Tea Party illustrates Nietzsche’s view of the interplay between Resentment (anger toward members of the Superior classes), and Contempt, its opposite (disdain for members of Inferior classes.). Very broadly speaking, this point of view suddenly sheds a new light on the last ten years (or more) of American politics, one which has really come into sharp focus in the past few months and days. Numerous liberal late night talk show hosts regularly taunt their attitudes to the point that “The Tea Party Right is acutely aware of, and deeply resents, an attitude in the liberal world that regards them as the backward, almost premodern, fraction of American society.” Ouch!

It is a terrible thing to feel inferior, and it is a terrible thing to make another feel inferior. It is (by definition) the mark of Gentlefolk do neither. Could it be that the root of all human discontent derives from such a simple thing as feeling inferior or making another feel so? Is that why Tea Party Republicans are always so Angry? Why at Congressional hearings they are incapable of talking in declarative sentences? Why they seem incapable of speaking without raising their voices, without sarcasm, without exaggerated disrespect? Why people invade the Capitol with willingness to kill and destroy?

Two thoughts:

  1.  It is always a bad idea to confuse people by acting angry when you feel hurt, because people respond to what they see. Show me anger, I will be defensive, show me hurt, I will be supportive. It’s not complicated. Just ask for what you need; don’t confuse people.
  2. An old Kung Fu episode ended with Caine lamenting to an angry young man he has befriended, “My friend…what a difficult path you have chosen.”

 

 

Wine Tasting

lummi island wine tasting january 8 ’21

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Bread is Back!

Multi Grain-  Uses a preferment where a portion of the flour, water, salt & yeast is mixed and fermented overnight before mixing the final dough to begin the enzymatic activity and gluten development overnight in a cool environment. The next day it is mixed with bread flour and fresh milled whole wheat and rye, then flax, sunflower and sesame seeds are added for a nice bit of crunch and some extra flavor.  – $5/loaf

Rosemary Olive Oil – also made with prefermented dough like the multi grain and then mixed with bread flour and a bit of freshly milled white whole wheat for a little more flavor and texture. Fresh rosemary from the garden and olive oil to make for a nice tender crumb and a nice crisp crust. A great all around bread – $5/loaf

and pastry this week…

Fruit & Spice Rolls – A nice change of pace after all those holiday sweets. About half whole wheat but still have plenty of butter, sugar and egg for flavor and a tender crumb. Dried cranberries, golden raisins, and fresh oranges, and an interesting mix of anise, cinnamon, mace and cardamom are topped with demerara sugar before baking for that extra bit of sweetness and crunch. – 2/$5

 

Wine Emergencies…Who Ya Gonna Call?

While Covid continues to limit our movements and associations, we will continue to help you keep your wine shelves topped up.  We know how it is…one minute the wine shelves are reassuringly stocked, and the very next day you reach for something and OMD, where did it all go?? It happens to all of us during these undifferentiated days and weeks of semi-quarantine.

But fear not, mis amigos! When a wine emergency strikes YOUR wine pantry, just click on the Order Wine link in the header above to browse our list of currently available wines with tasting notes and prices. When you have made your selections you can phone us with your order or email us using the Contact Us link above. We will confirm your order and make arrangements for pickup/delivery at your convenience. EZ-PZ!

 

 

 

 

Mar a Lago Update: Long National Nightmare Almost Over

Four years ago, in late February of 2017, just a month after the “Biggest Inauguration Ever,” and the contemporaneous worldwide Women’s March, many of us were still in Denial that this disaster from Galactic Left Field had somehow actually really happened. Below are excerpts of a letter I sent to Senator John McCain at that time. Though time has confirmed our reason to be concerned, no one except perhaps Michael Cohen could possibly have imagined how bad it might really get.

Dear Senator McCain,

Thank you for your excellent speech at the recent Munich Security Conference. As a fellow graduate of the Naval Academy (’67), I share your deep concerns about the rise of Authoritarianism both in Europe and here in the United States, and was reassured by your strong position on preserving our common values.

Your comments also suggest that you are as disturbed as many fellow Americans that a man as singularly unqualified as Donald Trump should have somehow become President of our country. He consistently demonstrates a severe narcissistic personality disorder, the emotional maturity of a spoiled child, and the critical thinking ability of Lewis Carroll’s Mad Hatter.

Perhaps no quality of leadership is more important or less appreciated than maintaining a steady and reassuring hand on the tiller.  Yet each day Mr. Trump remains in office adds more chaos and confusion, upsets long-established expectations at home and abroad, and undermines our ability to achieve and maintain our strategic and economic interests around the world.

Beyond the issue of his ability to meet the demands of the office, serious questions have also arisen about Mr. Trump’s financial ties to Russia and other foreign governments, with frightening implications for our nation’s security. Therefore Congress must insist that he release his tax returns, divulge in detail all financial relationships, and divest from all that present even the merest hint of conflict of interest. These security concerns must transcend party politics, and you are in a unique position to be a unifying force on this important issue.

Fast forward to today, four years later, and events of the last 24 hours have recalled to us Gerald Ford’s remarks as he was sworn in as President on August 9, 1974, just minutes after the official resignation of Richard Nixon:  My fellow Americans, our long national nightmare is over.” And in a way it was, through the Ford and the Carter 70’s, when ordinary people did pretty well. But since Reagan took over in 1981, real (adjusted for inflation) wages have remained essentially constant while all the gains from increasing worker productivity have ballooned the pockets if the 1%.

Yesterday’s occupation of the Capitol by Fox-fed, brain-dead, Trump-led zombies and a growing authoritarian Republicanism is a wake-up call we ignore at our peril. Every Congressional Republican who supports the Big Lies of “Voting Irregularities” and “Rigged Elections” is now exposed as a fascist-racist Authoritarian. Their sense of Entitlement to Power. Their Disdain for critical thinking. Their disgust with Diversity. Their inability to speak without yelling. Fear-biters. For at least the next ten years we turn our backs on them at our peril.

 

 

 

Wine Tasting

lummi island wine tasting new year’s day 2021

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A Toast to the Good Old Days

Let’s face it, 2020 has been emotionally and economically challenging, an endurance test for most of the planet. Humankind enters 2021 with hope for a better world that brings the pandemic, climate change, inequality, and social division into peaceful integration– all very big challenges as long as environmental destruction remains profitable to the unscrupulous.

So, as we turn the calendar to the New Year of 2021, we can find some encouragement by looking back to a few reminders of the good times, good friends, and good cheer we have enjoyed in in our little wine shop over the years…in the collective hope that we may begin enjoying them again soon in 2021!

After all, we are social animals, and we need each other. We need food, clothing, and shelter to get by, and conversation, humor, closeness, and hugs to thrive.

Aye, let’s all raise our glasses to that!

Best wishes to all for the Best Year Ever in 2021!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Standing By For Wine Emergencies

While Covid continues we will continue to be here for your wine needs. When a wine emergency strikes YOUR wine pantry, just click on the Order Wine link in the header above to browse our list of currently available wines with tasting notes and prices. When you have made your selections you can phone us with your order or email us using the Contact Us link above. We will confirm your order and make arrangements for pickup/delivery at your convenience.

 

Mar a Lago Update: Duck Season Ending Soon 

please stand by…

 

Wine Tasting