lummi island wine tasting may 15 ’20

click on photos for larger images

Bread Friday, Covid Rules

While Social Distancing remains in place to limit the spread of Covid-19, those of you on the Friday Bread mailing list will continue to receive a Sunday email from Janice with the week’s bread order menu and have until Wednesday to submit your orders. Until Social Distancing protocols, are loosened, Friday bread pickups will be from 4-5pm at the North Exit of the ferry overflow parking lot across Nugent Road from the ferry dock.

Bread pickup has become something of an impromptu Covid Tailgate party, with people setting up lawn chairs and wine glasses to hang out for awhile. So, depending on your Social Distancing choices, you might want to just drive in, pick up, and drive out, or make camp, set up, and Party. As you can see, people are keeping a safe distance while managing to schmooze, sip wine, and enjoy the sunshine! (This photo was taken around 5pm last Friday…can you find nine people* in it??)

Now Accepting Online Orders

Since it may be a long time before we can return to our elbow-to-elbow wine tastings, we have taken the first step toward an “online store.” As mentioned last week, from time to time over many years we have explored that possibility, even had a couple of versions up and running briefly before abandoning the idea. While a lot of those early files are still in the website somewhere, many are years out of date, so we are now exploring a new array of online  ordering options, starting this weekend with this simple email order form you can use to order wine in a few easy steps:

  1.  Click “Contact Us”on the website header bar at the top of this page.
  2. Fill in the Contact Form per instructions;
  3. Submit your order.

It’s that Simple!


Wine Notes

The wine list mentioned above has a number of new wines we have never poured for you. So each week we will add notes on a couple of them and keep a bottle open should you drop by to pick up an order! This week we feature the Pascual Toso Estate Malbec and the Juggernaut Hillside Cabernet.

Toso Malbec ’17      Argentina       $14
Red ripe berries and plum notes. Smooth and delicious; focused, clean notes of violets, plum, and red cherry notes with very good freshness and a plush, elegant mouthfeel with  smooth oak and easy tannins.

Pascual Toso is named for its founder, who emigrated from Italy to Argentina in 1880 (OMD, that’s 140 years ago!). Sr. Toso settled in Mendoza. With a family history in winemaking he became intrigued by the exceptional quality of the vineyards in the region, and opened his first winery in San Jose in 1890. In subsequent years he (among others!) discovered the exceptional terroir of the Maipu Valley, bought land and developed vineyards. Today, like many old-time wineries, Toso was bought and owned by the J Llorente and Associates corporation at some point. Today, after 125 years, the winery is exploring the planting and vinification of Bordeaux varietals cabernet sauvignon and cab franc which do very well in Mendoza. This is not surprising given the astonishing success of Argentine malbec worldwide in the last twenty years.


Juggernaut Hillside Cabernet ’17   California   $19
Huge, rich, and opulent, with complex flavors of chocolate, coffee, blackberries, cassis, mint, and velvety tannins. New French oak adds notes of vanilla and toast; concentrated, rich, and smooth on the palate.

One good way (besides tasting it!) to get a felt sense of this particular wine (or its Image) is to watch its website open up…! Clearly this wine and its image are very Madmen-designed products. That said, and cabernet sauvignon being what it is, there a Power and Depth to these grapes that makes for a very satisfying wine experience. We also confess a Weakness for red wine from the Sierra Foothills wine regions just south of Sacramento. We have found that these wines, many from very old vines (100 yrs.++), have a certain richness, depth, and power that certain moods just Require.


Mar a Lago Update: Capitalism, Freedom, and Tyranny

When I was a grad student in Economics in the Seventies, Milton Friedman, a Conservative economist at the University of Chicago, had reached the Top of his Game, winning the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1976. Friedman’s whole Schtick was a defining Update of Adam Smith’s Invisible Hand , asserting that the self-interested motives of individuals in markets would inevitably lead the the best Overall Outcomes for all.

Last week we explored the tension between the idea of representative democracy and the tendency of human economy to concentrate power and wealth in few hands, a fairly useful definition of Tyranny.

There are numerous markers on the table that we are now in a Tolkienesque struggle between the Good of Democracy and the Evil of Authoritarianism. The last four years of the heartless and mindless confederacy of the Tweetster and his minions like Fox News, the Republican Party, the Militia-minded Racists, the Wall Street Grifters, the Gun-Toting Rednecks, the Bible-Thumping Authoritarians, and the rest of their Ilk and their Kith and their Kin have faithfully represented the resurgent Dystopias of Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, Stalin, Amin, Kim Jongs Il and Un, Mao, Saddam, Gaddhafi, and and on and on and on throughout human history. From the wills and unmet psychological needs of deeply disturbed and unfulfilled men have come thousands of years of astounding acts of stupidity, cruelty, and waste.

We continue to read, recommend, and contemplate On Tyranny by historian Timothy Snyder, who puts these men and their history in a stark and relevant perspective to our present global and national crises. As the old warning says, “Awake, awake, be mindful in practice; time flies like an arrow, it will not wait for you!”







Wine Tasting

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