Monday, February 17, 2014

Did you forget Valentine's day? Here is how to make it up!

By Catherine L Luke

How did you celebrate Valentine’s Day last week?  Did you forget?   It’s cool.  Life can be a crazy whirlwind.  Dates of the calendar just fly right by (like in an Alice in Wonderland rabbit hole sort of swirl).  Did you kind of, sort of, purposefully forget?   Because it felt forced, and you’re a rebel, and drug store holidays can be so lame?  I get it.

Whether you need to get out of the dog house because you forgot, or because you’ve suddenly been inspired by cupid’s little arrow a week after the fact, you can still show that you’ve got the biggest heart in town.  No matter how lame a holiday can be, love is not lame.  It’s a complex and sometimes unusual thing.  It should be celebrated big and celebrated often!  N’est-ce pas?

I think that most of us can agree that the best way to do this involves some good ole fashion wining and dining.  Got to fuel the fire!  It needs no formal date, or time, or anything like that, but what I’m suggesting here is that you treat yourself and your sweetheart to Five Days of LURV!

Here, as a muse, is a sample menu of libations:
Day 1: Champagne!  Because it’s happy, and it’s sprightly, and it’s sexy.  There’s no better way to kickoff anything, particularly a big fat celebration of love.  Aubry Fils and Pol Roger are always winners for me, though there are lots of amazing small growers on the market.  Try one out!  Snack on interesting cheeses and roasted nuts.

If not Champagne, maybe a Cremant d’(insert French region here), or Franciacorta, or a high quality Cava, a Metodo Classico Erbaluce,  a sparkling Verdicchio, or a bottle of bubbles full of California sunshine.  So many possibilities- be brave and try something you’ve never heard of.  Love’s a big ‘ole risk anyway, so buckle up and take a vinous adventure together.

Day 2: Barolo.  Express the deep and mysterious folds of your emotions with a bottle of Barolo.  Cook up adish involving some potent (and deep and mysterious) mushrooms.  Perhaps a lamb ragout?  Don’t be afraid to get down like that.  Even better if you go for a very particular Barolo from a cru or single vineyard.  Something from an extra special place for your extra special pal.  There’s nothing more intriguing than the nebbiolo grape when aged long and beautifully.  Be sure to decant a few hours before sipping.  You’re in for layers of pleasure.  It may even reveal the poet in you.  No chance?  Memorize some Rumi.

Day 3: Absinthe  Serve it traditionally.  Wake up your senses. 
“...the young man poured the water in a very thin stream and the girl watched the absinthe cloud opalescently.  It felt warm as her fingers held the glass and then as it lost the yellow cast and began to look milky it cooled sharply and the young man let the water fall in a drop at a time.” (Hemingway, The Garden of Eden). As your sugar cube drips over the magic potion, be sure to play Yo La Tengo’s love song, Sugarcube.  This scene screams romance!

Day 4: Vouvray.  Paired with fresh oysters.  A teaming that is very simple, yet feels so fancy; delightful though kind of serious.  From “the garden of France” to your moment in time, Vouvray’s savory and luscious expression of Chenin Blanc brings joy and luxury to any day.

Day 5: Champagne!  Again!  You may as well sip it for the rest of the days of the year too.  But especially today.  Yes, today!  Everyday with your cutie pie is deserving of Champagne.  It’s true.  And it’s fun.  I’m pretty sure that one of the secrets to life...and love (and all that important stuff), is to remember to have fun.
“And frame your mind to mirth and merriment which bars a thousand harms and lengthens life” -Shakespeare
delightful though kind of serious.  From “the garden of France” to your moment in time, Vouvray’s savory and luscious expression of Chenin Blanc brings joy and luxury to any day.

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!

Catherine lives in Brooklyn, and has worked in the wine industry in Napa Valley and NYC. She is certified by the WSET, as well as the school of "wine in real life".  Understanding the patchwork of little-known Italian regional wines, dishes, and customs excites her most of all. She (sometimes) muses on her blog GrapesofCath.

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