lummi island wine tasting feb 15 ’19

note: some photos may link to larger formats when clicked…

Friday Breads This Week

Levain w/ Dried Cherries and Pecans – A levain is made the night before final mixing of the dough as when using a sourdough starter. The final dough combines the levain with bread flour and fresh milled whole wheat before loading up with dried Montmorency cherries and toasted pecans. A nice rustic loaf that goes well with meats and cheese – $5/loaf

Pan de Chocolate – A delicious chocolate artisan bread made with a levain, bread flour, and fresh milled rye flour, honey for sweetness, vanilla and plenty of dark chocolate. Makes fabulous toast – think about spread with peanut butter, even better french toast – $5/loaf.

Chocolate Panettone – Panettone is an Italian Holiday brioche often including candied orange
peel and raisins and made as a large loaf. These Chocolate Panettone are a smaller version made with lots of sugar, butter, eggs and honey including three types of chocolate, cocoa nib praline, and candied ginger, before being topped with a chocolate glaze, and no candied orange or raisins. Great as a pastry, toast, or a great bread pudding! – 2/$5



The Carmignano wine region comprises a modest 270 acres of vines about 12 miles west of Firenze (Florence) that yield about 30,000 cases of wine per year. The region has made wine since Roman times, and has been growing French Bordeaux grapes since the 1500’s.  Now in its fourth century as a recognized wine region, Carmignano wines must include at least 50% sangiovese, 20% canniolo nero, and 10 to 20% each of cabernet sauvignon/cabernet franc in its blends with several other Italian varietals and a  recent trend toward including merlot and syrah in the blends.

Carmignano was designated a separate DOC in 1975, before which its wines had been known as Chianti Montalbano. The soils in this small region are rich in lime, with good drainage and favorable balance of hot days and cool nights, which some of us think give the Carmignano sangiovese a bit more weight than Chianti in general, making it a good pairing with rich, savory dishes. Possibly a bit intense for some palates, some of us find it….how shall we say…curiously compelling.


Wine Club Notes

Here we are in February already, and an unseasonably Snowy one it is! And regardless of what Press Pundits for Punxsutawney Phil Pretend he Predicted, there are still five official weeks left till Spring Arrives. Although our unseasonable C-c-cold will hopefully abate over the next few days, the days will keep getting longer and warmer. On average.

More to the point, here we are in 2019 (really?…seriously?…OMD!) a New Year here at the Wine Shop, and it is yet again time to renew Wine Club memberships, as many of you have already done.

This is our gentle reminder that to maintain your wine club benefits ($5 wine tastings and sales tax-free purchases) through 2019, you must renew your annual calendar year membership.

We rely on and appreciate your support, and look forward to another year of sharing the nourishing space we somehow mutually create each weekend. As an old friend sometimes says, “We are all Lucky Ducks!”



Mar a Lago Update: I’m Not Getting My Way, It Must Be a National Emergency

Back in 2016 or so when we took the photo that has accompanied this weekly paragraph in the wine blog for the last two years, we were on a day trip to Friday Harbor on San Juan Island. Near the ferry dock and adjacent marina is a small park with a fountain feeding a sweet little pool of water in which swam this Sunglassed Plastic Duck. It had a familiar Air, a certain Nonchalance, a certain je ne sais qua air Symbolic of…hmm, who or what was it…?

After a few moments’ contemplation, we realized OMG, it’s the Tweetster!  Though never doubting the truth of this insight, it was a long journey to drill down to the meaning this image evokes: Smug, Oblivious,  Infantile, Pampered, Vain, Invulnerable, Self-Centered-– a constellation that adds up to a profound sense of Personal Entitlement, unconstrained by any sense of Personal Responsibility.

The last two years have largely confirmed the intuitive metaphorical validity of the Plastic Duck. It cannot be denied that the Political Dynamic since 2016 has been, sadly: Tweet (five minutes effort); b) Analysis (three days commentary); c) Retweet (five minutes); d) the Re-Analysis; etc. That is, the Tweets drive the news analysis, not the other way around.

For just over a month we have all been getting used to the New Reality of Divided Government, and it is an unfolding Revelation that it can make so much Difference in the Balance of Power. Supposedly the Tweetster will soon declare a National Emergency to get funding for his Wall, whatever that might mean.

All we can be sure of at this point in time is, it won’t be pretty!


Washington Post Tweetster Lie Count to date: 7,546 as of 1/1/19


This week’s wine tasting

Lumos Pinot Gris  Rudolfo Vineyard ’17      Oregon   $18
Clear light golden straw color. Lively and complex aromas of lemon, green apple, nectarine. A vibrant, dry yet-fruity body and a tingling, breezy, nicely balanced nut-skin finish.

Saint Nabor Gris de Gris Rose ’16       France         $10
Bouquet of red fruit and honeysuckle with linden-tree nuances; light, crisp and easy drinking, with palate of wild strawberries and blueberries with mineral nuances.

J Lohr Cypress Merlot ’16    California      $10
Classic varietal aromas of black cherry and plum with subtle hints of oak;  savory red fruit and comforting weight finishes with a touch of chalky tannin.  Seriously over-delivers for its modest price.

Terra d’Oro Zinfandel ’16    California       $15
Vibrant aromas of clove and big, generous fruit lead to concentrated flavors of juicy plums and  blackberries,all with a good dose of toasted oak.

Piaggio  Carmignano Il Sasso ’13    Italy   $29    
Rich, ample and voluptuous, with black cherry, plum, lavender, spice, tobacco and dried herb notes, and int3ense fruit and texture. There is not much subtlety here, just plain gorgeous!.

Wine Tasting

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