While it’s always a treat to go out to dinner, Valentine’s Day is one of the few nights that I’d prefer to stay in. Sometimes the prix-fixe menus and forced romantic atmosphere can feel stuffy. Staying in can still be a major indulgence with the right ingredients…I plan on trying the following menu this Thursday (thanks, Martha!):
My husband and I will whip this up together while rocking out to some good records and sipping Rusty Red. This 100% Syrah is the perfect match for the pepper-crusted meat and veggies. It’s also the “Wine of the Month” at Cathedral Ridge Winery, so it’s a great time to stock up!
The season is upon us! If you’re planning to host a holiday party this year, Food & Wine magazine has some helpful tips for your wine-related planning.
1) How much to serve?
Cathedral Ridge is currently offering a holiday pack that includes 3 bottles of Cabernet, 1 bottle of Halbtrocken, and 1 bottle of Rusty Red: Click here to have it shipped to you!
2) Wine Serving Tips
White Wine (serve at 55°)
In a refrigerator: 1.5 hours
In a freezer: 40 min
In ice & water: 20 min
If it’s been stored in a refrigerator, keep it at room temperature for 20 min
Red Wine (serve at 65°)
In a refrigerator: 20 min
3) What to do for a spill?
One foolproof way to get red-wine stains out of carpets and upholstery is Wine Away ($9; 888-946-3292 or evergreenlabs.com), a spray made of fruit and vegetable extracts. If you don’t have Wine Away, blot up as much of the stain as possible with a paper towel or clean cloth, saturate the area with cold water, blot that up, then apply a paste of three parts baking soda to one part water. Let the paste dry, then vacuum it up.
Thanks again to Food & Wine for these great tips!
Cheers & Happy Holiday Season,
The great American holiday of Thanksgiving is a mere two weeks away. Cathedral Ridge Winery has put together a holiday package of six bottles that have been especially selected for their compatibility with Thanksgiving fare. Herewith, a few recipes to inspire your planning and pairing…
More to come!
For this coming Labor Day weekend, consider including a new element into any parties that you might host or attend. A vertical wine tasting is tasting one particular varietal (from the same winery) from successive years to experience the nuances that can change from year-to-year. It’s a really interesting way to taste the way that unique weather patterns and soil conditions can slightly alter the resulting grape. A fun way to do it is to place each wine in a bag so that the tasting can be blind. Take notes and share personal favorites. You might go in with some friends to enjoy both a white and a red vertical. A Cabernet would be especially versatile with summer grilling: Try the Cathedral Ridge September Special (the two newest cab releases against the vintage). Cheers!!
We’ve always preferred to stay in on Valentine’s Day. I would happily go out on the 13th or 15th, but there’s something odd about being out for a “romantic evening,” when everyone around you is doing the same thing. That said, it’s still fun to go all out while staying in, and I’ve planned the menu: Steak with Drunken Mushrooms and Roasted Blue Cheese Potatoes. It looks amazing and simple, leaving enough time to also make Dark Chocolate Brownies with Raspberry Goat Cheese Swirl. This will pair perfectly with Cathedral Ridge Rusty Red, which is 100% Syrah; it’s an off-dry Syrah with notes of jammy blackberry, chocolate covered-cherry, and smokey star anise. It’s a perfect complement to everything from the steak to the chocolate (and on sale at the moment)!
Also for Valentine’s Day, Cathedral Ridge Winery is offering Twila’s chocolates in both tasting rooms. Pick up some Rusty Red, enjoy some chocolate, and head home to the most romantic spot in town. Cheers!
Image: “Two Hearts” by Hood River-based artist Cathleen Rehfeld
The movement to avoid crowded malls and big box stores continues to grow each holiday season. Portland, Oregon and the Columbia Gorge seem to be at the crest of this crusade with local artisan bazaars, cooking parties, and a dedication to shopping local. If you prefer gifts made by hand and with care, the following items are guaranteed to be a hit throughout the season!
I had to make several batches of these crackers last year because they were so popular. These Oat and Cheddar Crackers are the perfect thing to bring to a holiday party with some amazing cheese like Gruyere.
Also in demand again this season are these Peanut Butter & Jelly Cups. The sea salt is a key addition!
And who doesn’t enjoy the gift of wine? Cathedral Ridge is offering a holiday celebration six-pack (save $34/20%), which includes two Dampier Pinot Noir, two Chardonnay, and two Cabernet Sauvignon. The package also includes several recipes for the holidays to pair with this collection of wonderful wines. Cheers! -AG
Succulents create an unexpected centerpiece (via cupcakes and cashmere); cranberries create color and burlap keeps it rustic.
When it comes to wine, drink what you like. Cathedral Ridge Winery’s 2009 Dampier Pinot Noir and 2009 Chardonnay are award-winning wines that will compliment every menu and palate. Eat, drink, be merry, and give thanks. Cheers to you and yours! -CRW
We all know the old rule about not wearing white after Labor Day, but there’s no need to stash away the Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay along with your white linen pants. Fall is prime time to sip a full-bodied, buttery Chardonnay along with a butternut squash soup, or enjoy a crisp Pinot Gris midway through a hike in October’s crunchy fallen leaves. Good wine is not seasonal; the changes with each month present opportunities for new sensory experiences through thoughtful pairing. The following are a few of my favorite early fall recipes… –AG
On July 4th, 5% of your purchase at Cathedral Ridge will be donated to the Wounded Warrior Project, a nonprofit with a mission to honor and empower wounded warriors. WWP offers this support to the more than 40,000 service members who have been injured in the current conflicts, as well as the 300,000 men and women who are believed to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. Let’s support them together this Independence Day.