Smoking Loon * Cabernet Sauvignon * 2015

Smooking Loon 2015

Sometimes you simply go with what you know.

Smoking Loon takes me back to college, many years ago, when I began developing an affinity for wine. To this day it’s a wine I can rely on when I want an inexpensive bottle at home for a casual drink or with dinner. While some may scoff at the $7.99 price tag and the fact each vintage can come from a different region around the world, I’m satisfied with this wine in a way those favorite childhood food dishes can still satisfy one long into adulthood.

The 2015 is a South American Cabernet. Full-bodied, well-balanced, and extremely fruit forward, this wine contains vibrant flavors. Dark blackberry, oak, vanilla, and spice marinate into an earthy finish. We had this one evening for dinner with a roast made in the slow cooker. It would also pair well with a grilled steak.

The best thing about this wine: Inexpensive
Available at: Hy-Vee
By the bottle: $7.99
Pairs well with: grilled steak, or slow cooked roast
Winery Web Page: http://smokingloon.com

The entire point of drinking wine is finding something you enjoy. For me, Smoking Loon is just that: a wine I love. Because it’s inexpensive. It’s unique (and maybe a little loony). It’s reputation is respectable for only $8.00. It requires no excuse, at least not from me.

Cheers to being “loony”,

TODD

Smoking Loon * Cabernet Sauvignon * 2015

The Federalist * Cabernet Sauvignon * 2015

I don’t know if it is the gorgeous view of the golf course or simply being outdoors that makes drinking a glass of wine taste exceptionally good. I have had the Federalist Cabernet several times before but today it tasted better than I remembered. Since we were sitting outside I chilled my red for about 20 minutes before pouring a glass.
The best thing about this wine: Being slightly chilled really enhanced the flavor and fruitiness.
Available at: HyVee
By the bottle: $15.99
Pairs well with: Beef and BBQ Ribs
Winery Web Page: http://www.federalistwines.com


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The Federalist * Cabernet Sauvignon * 2015

Salvestrin * Cabernet Sauvignon * 2013

If you are anything of a Napa Cab fan, you have surely heard over and over about the excellent 2012 and 2013 vintage years. The weather in those two years was nearly identical and the exact conditions wine growers love: warm days, cool nights, little rain. I got the opportunity to taste many wines from those vintages over the last few weeks, both at tasting events around town and in Napa. A few of them really stood out to me, one being Salvestrin’s 2013 Cabernet from St. Helena in the Napa Valley

Best thing about this wine: Fruit bomb with a complex finish
Available at: Corkscrew Wine and Cheese Rockbrook
By the Bottle: $71
Try this if you like: Big Napa Cabs!
Winery website: www.salvestrinwinery.com

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Salvestrin * Cabernet Sauvignon * 2013

Silverado Vineyards * Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon * 2013

Hurry Up and Wait

Our daughter isn’t here yet. What happened to science? What happened to modern medicine? What happened, even, to my hopeless romanticism? Yesterday, April 16, was not only my birthday as well as Easter, but it was also two full days after our daughter was due. I fully expected, in my arrogance, that she would arrive on my birthday, you know, sort of like a great cosmic present to me from the universe. I deserve that much, don’t I?  And yet here we are, Monday evening, the day after my birthday and three days and counting after our baby girl was supposed to get here, and all of my romantic notions about sharing cakes and parties have been dispelled. Even if my daughter didn’t arrive today, however, a shipment of wine did. I consoled myself by pulling the cork on this extraordinary bottle of wine as I cooked dinner for my family and listened to U2 instead of wondering why my daughter was taking so long to incubate.

The best thing about this wine: The QPR (Quality-Price-Ratio)
Available in Omaha at: Costco
Cost: $28 (at Costco – typically retails higher)
Pairs well with: Family time, red meats, an evening stroll around the neighborhood

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Silverado Vineyards * Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon * 2013

James Mitchell Estate * James Mitchell Cabernet Sauvignon * 2014

Last Saturday, my mom stopped by and told us to go out fjamesor a few hours while she babysat the kids. This rarely happens,  so we take full advantage when it does!! We knew we weren’t going to have just one glass of wine so we called for an Uber.  It was 75 and sunny out this day which made this date even better!  We’ve never been to La Buvette downtown so we thought we would give it a try since they had outdoor seating and a nice selection of wine.

The best thing about this wine: The price for this bottle of wine!! 
Available at: La Buvette 
By the bottle:  $13.95 /By the glass: $5.95
Pairs well with:  Roasted Duck, Asian BBQ Ribs, Burger or Dark Chocolate 
Winery Web Page:  http://www.aveniubrands.com/wines/james-mitchell/ 

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James Mitchell Estate * James Mitchell Cabernet Sauvignon * 2014

John Anthony Vineyards * Cabernet Sauvignon * 2013

Growth Mindset Parenting

 One evening near the end of a bottle of wine, great conversation, and dwelling on the merits of the terms “fixed mindset” versus “growth mindset”, Mark grabbed a bottle of John Anthony Cabernet, suggesting my wife and I would enjoy it. Fast-forward a few days later to when my wife and I experienced a particularly tough parenting day. Our only daughter is wonderful, but—like all children—she proved to be extremely difficult this day, causing us a little more stress and anxiety than we had anticipated. I snatched up the John Anthony, thinking it would be just the trick to bring us down to reality: we’re not bad parents, it was just an off day.

The best thing about this wine: Smooth and balanced all the way through
Available at: The Omaha Wine Company
By the bottle: $65.00 – $70.00
Winery Web Page: http://www.johnanthonyvineyards.com

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John Anthony Vineyards * Cabernet Sauvignon * 2013

Francis Ford Coppola Winery * Coppola Cabernet Sauvignon * 2015

It’s St Patrick’s day and the bars are packed with people drinking green beer, listening to Irish music and eating corned beef and cabbage.  I’m sitting on my deck, watching the Creighton game and drinking a bottle of Francis Coppola Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s the perfect day to sit outside, 66 degrees and sunny. Five years ago I would’ve been one of those fighting the crowds and waiting in line for a green Busch Light! Funny how things change once you start a family.

Available at:  Bakers
By the bottle:   $14.99 
Pairs well with: Beef, Lamb, Poultry, and my refried bean dip!
Winery Web Page: https://www.francisfordcoppolawinery.com/

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Francis Ford Coppola Winery * Coppola Cabernet Sauvignon * 2015