lummi island wine tasting may 13-14 ’16

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Friday Breads  (contact us to get on the pre-order list!)

dscn1364 (Modified)Multi seed & Grain LoafStarts with a sourdough culture of both bread and rye flours, then mixed with more bread flour, fresh milled whole wheat and rye and a little honey for balance, and loaded up with flax, sesame, sunflower and pumpkin seeds and polenta cornmeal. A great artisan bread – $5/loaf.

Semolina Levain – The sourdough culture of bread flour and fresh milled whole wheat, with more bread flour and semolina from durum wheat which gives the bread a pretty pale yellow color and a richer flavor. For even more flavor a little butter is added which helps keep the crumb soft. Makes for great toast- $5/loaf.

And, on the sweet side…

Individual Cinnamon Rolls – Made with a rich sweet dough that is full of eggs, butter and sugar, rolled out, spread with pastry cream, and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar. – 2/$5.



Chateau de Donjon

Back in October 2011 we were driving out of Carcasonne, and diverted in search of an old winery called Chateau du Donjon. It has been around for hundreds of years, located in an old castle-and-former-monastery just a few kilometers away. We had already been buying these wines for several years, enjoying their reliable quality and modest prices, the two most important characteristics of wines we prefer to carry.

As it turned out, we arrived around mid-day on a Sunday, and knocked on the door. (remember, this building is essentially a huge medieval castle, with a huge door like an old Cathedral!). As there was no answer, we were heading  back to the car when the door opened and we met Jean Panis, the owner-winemaker. Though the place was officially closed, he gave us a very brief tour and tasting in what must be one of the oldest rooms we have ever been in. Might have been a dungeon, or prayer room, or who-knows-what back in the 15th century.

The whole interaction took less than a half hour, yet felt like a very kind gift. Indeed, after we had left and were driving away, M. Panis came jogging across the street with a bottle of wine for us. Charmant, n’est-ce  All you need to know is that the wine he gave us is one we have carried for many years, and which we are pouring this weekend. This particular vintage has intriguing aromas and flavors of roses. No, I don’t mean pink wines from Provence, I mean the actual flowers! VERY rosy wine; come check it out!



Heads Up, amigos! Although THIS weekend we will follow our usual schedule, NEXT weekend (May 20-21) we will be “away”– for the birth of Number One Grandson! Fear not, however, because despite our absence, be assured that the wine shop Will Be Open as Usual next Friday (May 20) for bread pickup, wine purchases, and general socializing. And as we go to press tonight, the shop will probably be closed next Saturday, May 21.

Since the mother of this Magical Grandchild is Russian, he is being named in the Russian tradition (sort of), in this case with reference to both his father’s and grandfather’s names, a mix of Russian and American customs. His first name will be from his father (Donald) and middle name after his maternal grandfather (Sergei).  Though by Russian tradition that would become “Donald Sergeyovich” (Donald, son/grandson of Sergei), his mom is being a little creative combining American and Russian traditions. All you need to know is that the common Russian diminutive for Sergei is Seryozha. We think it’s a pretty cool name…maybe it will stick! Anyway, please send along your collective positive vibes, and stay tuned for breaking news; it’s all pretty exciting!


The Unbearable Lightness of Being

From time to time we are drawn to indulge our need to be philosophical. Years ago, when I was a Zen student and body-centred psychotherapist, I had a client who was moved to Despair by the idea that Life is Meaningless. And when this person said “Meaningless,” it was, well, Full of Meaning. Sort of. I asked one of my Teachers at the time about this, and I am still meditating on his response:

“Yes. Life is Meaningless. And it is Meaningless that it is Meaningless!”

Well, interesting, but not very satisfying, huh…?  Like the book and movie title borrowed for this section, “the Lightness of Being” refers to the idea that we just get one go-round with each decision we make. We don’t appear to have the luxury of trying out even one or two of the infinite number of possible alternative responses, and being able to adjust our decisions accordingly.* Life is “light” precisely because it unfolds linearly and we only get one shot at everything. Therefore, almost without exception, we all spend our lives painting ourselves into one sort of Corner or Another, and hopefully we learn something from that. The big Philosophical Question is whether, through Karma, or an Endless Cycle of Birth and Death, or ongoing Reincarnation, we get to carry Forward our hard-earned Lessons of Experience toward some Goal. Ah, yes, an appealing idea, n’est-ce pas?”

This week’s wine tasting

Coopers Creek Albarino ’14    New Zealand   $18
Crisp, dry and zesty, showing pure white peach  and lemon flavours; round and creamy with delicate peach and citrus fruit tones, zesty acidity, and touches of minerality.

Bargemone Provence Rose ’15   France    $14
Beautiful pale pink. Bright, mineral-dusted aromas of pink grapefruit and dried red berries. Light and racy on the palate, with tangy citrus and redcurrant flavors. Finishes brisk and dry, with good lingering spiciness and length.

Domaine Donjon Minervois Tradition ’11    France      $16
60% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 10% Carignan; aged 12 months in stainless steel. Meaty and complex, with sweet, ripe red and black fruits, loads of white and black pepper, bay leaf and wild roses, it stays fresh and lively on the palate, with medium-bodied richness and length.

Tarima Hill Monastrell ’13    Spain     $14
Complex, perfumed scents of dark berry liqueur, cola, incense and smoky oak spices. Plush and expansive, with sweet cherry compote and blueberry flavors with notes of floral pastille and bitter chocolate. Rich and lively, finishing with excellent power, smooth tannins and a late jolt of allspice.

Le Rote Chianti Colli Senesi ’11 Italy $14
Rich, chewy, dark fruit evolves into a smooth, eminently drinkable palate of black cherry and sweet tobacco. Great food wine!

Wine Tasting

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