One of my delightful cast of characters returned to Michigan and our home became her base of operations. We have been on the go the entire month of August and then we even had more fun with her presence. Ms. Yoga and my Bride go way back, BTWR or Before the Wine Raconteur, and sometimes I am just the fifth wheel, but what the hell. We prepared to have her favorite guest suite ready, and some things were planned and some other moments were just going to be done on the fly, but there would be some wine encountered and why not, she would not have it any other way.
Ms. Yoga is a nibbler and I really think she prefers an evening of appetizers over a standard meal, though she does enjoy her steakhouses, and if that sounds like a bit of contradictions, so be it, but the outcome is always good and plenty of laughing and good times. When she finally arrived and had a chance to somewhat unpack, we ended up in the breakfast nook and just started noshing. My Bride was just pulling out all sorts of small plates with no rhyme or reason, but it was all done in the anticipation of her arrival. Even the final course was more an appetizer dish, but I think we were running out of steam, not to mention room in the waist by the time the Crab Cakes were served.
As for wines, we went through several and all were standards for us here and they worked. We had opened a bottle of JaM Cellars Butter Chardonnay 2015, as this has become one of my Bride’s go-to wines these days and if fact I think we had it on one of the nights that Ms. Yoga was here the last time, as it is an easy to drink Chardonnay for the price. The wine carries a California AVA designation as the fruit comes from Mendocino County, Santa Barbara County and Clarksburg. It is a commercial bulk wine that has some appeal, and since it is not done in oak barrels for aging, they use oak chips to impart the taste of the oak and the butter taste and texture that one gets from small batch Chardonnay wines. The other wine was Ruta 22 Malbec Mendoza 2016 of Argentina. Ruta 22 is the name of the major route in Mendoza, and the winery was established in 2010, so it is new, but the fruit for this wine came from three different areas of Mendoza, namely Uco Valley, Agrelo and Eastern Mendoza and the winery ages the wine up to two years in a mix of French and American Oak depending on the vintage. The wine had some excellent body and flavor and paired very well with our dinner, in fact the wine must have evaporated as it seemed to disappear. The winery is part of the much larger umbrella company of Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits. Malbec, Mendoza and Argentina are almost synonymous with each other, as Malbec is the leading grape of the area and it has been planted there from the mid-Sixteenth-Century by the Jesuit priest that initially came to the area. The good thing is that we could relax and enjoy plenty of wine, because we were not going to be leaving the house.