Monday, October 31, 2011

Soup and wine, a duo all comfort ...

MINESTRONE...


This tomato-flavoured Italian soup typically contains beans, onions, zucchini, celery, herbs and pasta. And which wine should go with it?

Enjoying a good glass of wine is one of life's true pleasures. Our Wine Cellar has Italian wines for every palate, every preference and every occasion. Some, produced by wonderful, small boutique vineyards, have limited availability and distribution. Others are from great, well-known vintners who offer amazing assortments...
We're well known for our great selection of wines...

You are seated at the restaurant table and are studying the wine card. Which wine to choose?
...For a great «TIP»: Do not be shy about asking your Serveur... for advice! 


Decanting Wine...
Hold the receptacle in one hand and the bottle in the other, and with a smooth and steady action, pour the wine into the decanter. Don't rush when decanting, rather use a gentle, steady movement, to avoid disturbing the sediment in the wine. Keep the neck of the bottle over the light source, so that you can observe for an arrowhead of sediment moving into the neck of the bottle. This is your cue to stop pouring.



The main reason to decant wine is if you’re dealing with an older bottle... decanting separates sediment from the wine. Aside from that, I’ve been discovering that a bottle of red wine, freshly uncorked, has more vivid aromas and flavor than one that’s been allowed to breathe, and much more than a wine that’s been entirely decanted.


TOMMASI RIPASSO 
VALPOLICELLA CLASSICO SUPERIORE



70% Corvina Veronese, 20% Rondinella, 10% Molinara

Visual: Really dark robe 
Nose: Quite powerful but nicely "rounded" with woody, dark cherries notes. 
Taste: Quite powerful again but nicely balanced. Warm, round, long en bouche. Can find again the same dark cherries notes. 


Was drank with Minestrone soup to start then with veal scaloppine in a creamy, mushroom sauce deglazed with Calvados. Splendid!


Note: Available in our wine cellar in 375 ml format!




Essere felice . . .

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Puoi avere difetti, vivere con ansia e qualche volta essere irritato/a, ma non dimenticarti che la tua vita è la più grande impresa del mondo.
Solo tu puoi evitare che vada in fallimento.
Ci sono molte persone che hanno bisogno di te, ti ammirano, e si tormentano per te.
Sarebbe bello che tu ricordassi sempre che essere felice non è avere un cielo senza tempeste, strade senza incidenti, lavori senza fatiche, relazioni senza delusioni.
Essere felice è trovare la forza nel perdono, la speranze nelle battaglie, la sicurezza nella paura, l’amore nei distacchi.
Essere felice...
Non è solo valorizzare il sorriso, ma riflettere sopra la tristezza.
Non è solo commemorare il successo, ma imparare la lezione dai fallimenti.
Non è solo allietarsi degli applausi, ma trovare allegria nell’ anonimato.
Essere felice è riconoscere che vale la pena di vivere la vita, malgrado tutte le sfide.
Essere felice non è opera del destino, ma una conquista di chi sa viaggiare dentro il suo proprio essere.
Essere felice è abbandonare i problemi e diventare autore della Propria storia.
Essere felice... è attraversare deserti, ma essere capaci di incontrare un’oasi nel profondo della tua anima e ringraziare Dio ogni giorno per il miracolo della vita.
È non avere paura dei propri sentimenti.
È saper parlare di te stesso/a.
È avere coraggio di accettare un "no".
È avere la forza di accettare una critica, anche se ingiusta.
È baciare il marito/la moglie, i figli, sostenere i genitori e vivere momenti poetici con gli amici,
Anche se ci hanno ferito...
Essere felice ...
È lasciar vivere libero il bimbo allegro e semplice che dimora dentro di noi
È avere la maturità per dire “ho sbagliato".
È avere il coraggio di dire “perdonami”! È avere la sensibilità di dire “ho bisogno di te” . È avere la capacità di dire “ti amo".
Desidero che la vita sia un cantiere di opportunità affinché tu sia felice...
Che nelle tue primavere tu sia amante dell’allegria.
Che nei tuoi inverni tu sia amico/a della saggezza.
E, quando sbaglierai strada, ricominci tutto di nuovo, così sarai ogni volta più innamorato/a della vita.
E scoprirai che...
Essere felice...
Non è avere una vita perfetta, ma
usare le lacrime per irrigare la tolleranza,
usare le perdite per rafforzare la pazienza,
usare le foglie per scolpire la serenità.
Usare il dolore per raffinare il piacere,
Usare gli ostacoli per aprire le finestre dell’intelligenza.
Non abbandonare mai te stesso/a!!!
Non rinunciare mai alle persone che ami.
Non rinunciare mai alla felicità, perchè la vita è uno spettacolo imperdibile.
E tu una persona speciale !

~ Anonimo

  




Monica, Chocolate and Red Wine...«'cca nisciuno è fesso!»

Ti amo, ti amo, ti amo ...
Some might consider this chorus from the famous song by Umberto Tozzi 
as a true declaration of love. 
After all, yours truly tells what he wants on his blog ...



CHOCOLATE!

For those who want to extend the
tasting of their red wine to the 
end of the meal, a very interesting pairing
can also be done with 
Dark Chocolate:





the more the cocoa content is high
(and thus, less sweet the chocolate will be)
the pairing will be more successful ...


If you're like me, pairing decadently dark chocolate with the perfect red wine is one of the most luxuriously delicious experiences under the sun.



Both wine and chocolate can be very complex on their own, so keep it simple with three basics:


* The wine you select must be perceived as sweeter than the chocolate.
** Since chocolate coats your mouth when you eat it, you'll need a wine that's big enough to cut through its richness.
*** Try looking for flavors in both that are similar to one another.



The richest, most intensely flavored chocolates are known as the bittersweet darks, which contain the least amount of sugar, and the greatest amount of cacao - anywhere from about 71 and 100 percent. 


Their bitter, roasted flavoring is so intense, that it really needs a strong red wine to balance the taste.






Masi Campofiorin - An evolution of Ripasso...

Masi Campofiorin is not exactly a Ripasso in the traditional sense. It is a special type of 'double fermentation' technique patented by Masi. The wine is made from the the local Valpolicella grapes (Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara), which are vinified fresh after harvest (no drying). Meanwhile, other Valpolicella grapes are left to dry for a number of weeks. These semi-dried grapes are then added to the newly fermented Valpolicella wine, and a short second fermentation, so to speak, ensues. The resulting Masi Campofiorin wine is more full-bodied, richer and more complex than the classic Valpolicella, yet more accessible and drinkable when younger than an Amarone. It seems to combine freshness and elegance with power and concentration. I find that the drying process also magnifies the sensation of minerality and place in the wine. 

Life's an adventure. Dark Chocolate and Masi Campofiorin, the presentation was meant to be romantic; it came naturally. I shaved  pieces of chocolate, put the wine and chocolate pairings together, and arranged them with flowers... 


Buon inizio di settimana a tutti!!





“Quando si ama non vi è nulla di meglio 
che dare sempre tutto, 
la propria vita, 
il proprio pensiero, 
il proprio corpo, 
tutto quel che si possiede; 
sentire quel che si dà; 
mettere tutto in gioco 
e poter dare sempre di più”.                                          
(G. de Maupassant)



Thursday, October 13, 2011

Enjoying a good glass of wine is one of life's true pleasures...


Our Wine Cellar

has Italian wines for every palate,

 every preference and every occasion. 

Some, produced by wonderful, 

small boutique vineyards, 

have limited availability and distribution. 

Others are from great, 

well-known vintners who offer 

amazing assortments...

We're well known for our great selection

 of wines, 

but when you're in the mood for something

 different... 

We offer a selection of imported 

Italian 

beer and fine domestic beers, 

as well as all your 

favorite portos, whiskeys and scotches. 

And our full bar has everything we need 

to prepare any cocktail 

you desire...



La Boisson – vitale, diverse, délicieuse et parfois 
dangereuse – 
qui accompagne notre pitance...

The Drink - vital, diverse, delicious and sometimes 
dangerous - 
that accompanies our misery ...

Il Drink - vitale, diverso, delizioso e qualche volta 
pericoloso - 
che accompagna le nostre miserie ...


Un verre d’alcool serait meilleur pour la santé que l’abstinence totale, en réduisant notamment certains facteurs de risques de maladies cardiovasculaires, et ce quelle que soit la boisson alcoolisée consommée !

Si l'excès d'alcool est une cause majeure de décès, un petit verre d’alcool par jour ne serait pas néfaste, bien au contraire ! Une consommation raisonnable de boissons alcoolisées aurait même un effet bénéfique sur la santé cardiovasculaire par rapport aux personnes qui ne boivent jamais d’alcool, selon deux articles parus simultanément dans la revue British Medical Journal.

Ces conclusions sont issues des résultats de deux méta-analyses, qui ont passé en revue d’anciennes études réalisées sur le sujet et publiées entre 1950 et 2009 dans des journaux scientifiques. Ce type de démarche est souvent utilisé en recherche biomédicale car il permet de rassembler et donc d’augmenter le nombre de cas étudiés afin de tirer des conclusions plus précises et plus globales, que celles qui étaient parues à l’origine. C’est exactement ce qu’a fait – en deux temps - une équipe canadienne de l’Université de Calgary.

Le premier article, dont le premier auteur est Paul Ronksley, s’est intéressé aux effets de la consommation d’alcool sur la santé cardiovasculaire et surtout sur les risques de mourir de maladies cardiovasculaires. Sur 4.235 articles tirés de la littérature scientifique et épluchés par les chercheurs, seuls 84 ont été inclus dans la méta-analyse, suivant des critères de pertinence et de qualité.

L’alcool baisse la mortalité par maladie cardiovasculaire

Cette première approche a déjà permis de déterminer que, toutes causes confondues, la mortalité est réduite de 13 % chez les consommateurs modérés d’alcool (moins d'un à deux verres par jour) comparativement à ceux qui ne boivent jamais. Si l’on décortique un peu plus, on se rend compte que la majorité des pathologies mortelles analysées (maladie cardiovasculaire, cardiopathie coronarienne) ont moins de chance de se produire si l’on boit de façon raisonnable, à l’exception des accidents vasculaires cérébraux (augmentation des risques de 6 %).

Ces résultats pourraient s’expliquer par ce qui a été découvert au cours de la seconde méta-analyse, menée par Susan Brien. Dans ce cas, les chercheurs se sont intéressés à l’influence de l’alcool sur les taux de treize marqueurs, généralement pris en compte comme facteurs de risques des maladies cardiovasculaires. Ceci a été réalisé en analysant 63 articles scientifiques (sur 4.690 articles sélectionnés), concernant des individus sains (sans maladie connue), consommant régulièrement ou non de l’alcool.

Bière, vin ou alcool fort : même bénéfice

Les taux de la majorité des marqueurs sont bénéfiques aux consommateurs d’alcool : le bon cholestérol (HDL, qui lutte contre le mauvais cholestérol) est en plus grande quantité, de même que l’adiponectine (qui régule le métabolisme des lipides et du glucose), alors que le taux de fibrinogène (impliqué dans la formation de caillots) est moins élevé. Ces résultats se recoupent de façon surprenante, quel que soit le type de boisson alcoolisée ingérée (bière, vin, ou alcool fort).

Ces résultats ne sont pas les premiers à tenter de convaincre l’opinion publique du bienfait de l’alcool. Avant eux, d’autres allant dans le même sens avaient été critiqués pour leur vice de méthodologie, qui consistait à inclure dans les personnes non-consommatrices d’alcool même d’anciens alcooliques, effectivement abstinents au moment de l’étude. Apparemment plus solides, (mais toutefois pas à l’abri de biais, comme toujours dans ce genre d’étude), ces deux articles devraient déculpabiliser les personnes qui apprécient de temps en temps un bon verre de vin rouge, en plus riche en polyphénols aux propriétés antioxydantes.
Source: 
L'alcool à petites doses régulières lutterait contre les maladies cardiovasculaires. 
© Quinn Dombrowski, CC by-nc-sa 2.0





~ Recipes ... ~

4 tablespoons of good will,
2 grams of patience,
add to everything a measure of tolerance,
2 handfuls of humility,
a generous sprinkle of sympathy,
a pinch of caution,
a large quantity of good humor,
season with a lot of common sense ...

... let it simmer over low heat ... ♥


TVB...=)

~ Recettes ... ~

4 cuillères à soupe de bonne volonté,
2 grammes de patience,
Ajouter à la mesure de la tolérance,
2 poignées de l'humilité,
une abondance aspersion de sympathie,
une pincée de prudence,
une grande quantité de bonne humeur,
assaisonner avec  beaucoup de bon sens ...

... laissez mijoter à feu doux ... ♥




Je vous donne cette rose rare ... tout comme notre amitié ...


I give you this rare rose flower ... just like our friendship ...






Wednesday, October 12, 2011

“dulcis in fundo” con il sacro Nebbiolo di Langa

and final triumph, with the sacred Nebbiolo Langhe...


Although wine can be a pleasant and delightful elixir without accompaniment, when combined or "twinned" with the proper food, wine becomes a multi-dimensional work of art completion. 
I like to explore the flavors, aromas, texture, balance ... 
And in a fine environment, 
it incorporates all of our senses.

The classification for the 2007 Vintage of the Langhe Nebbiolo ranges from 84/100 to 87/100.

The LANGHE NEBBIOLO (DOC) 2007 
of AZIENDA ENZO BOGLIETTI 
SCORES the HIGHEST at 87/100.



Winemakers notes:
Moderately intense ruby red color, in the nose, very floral with notes of red fruits: a rich palate, full-bodied, pleasantly tannic, with a long long finish. Wine suitable for medium and long aging.


p06


Salade de champignons 

Portobello grillées...


Un de mes ingrédients préférés 

sont les champignons portobello 

et j'aime continuellement explorer de

 nouvelles façons de les servir 

et de nouvelles saveurs à essayer. 

Ils sont une base qui peut absorber et 

dégagent les arômes les plus délicieux 

et leur texture 

est en constante évolution. 

Je les apprécie très tendre

 et juteux.


Je les ai rôtis dans le four et les ai assemblées 
comme une salade estivale. 
Tant que les champignons étaient en torréfaction, 
l'arôme le plus accueillant flottait dans l'air, 
aiguisant mon appétit et créant une voix profonde 
épicée dans toute la cuisine...


Non nascondere
il segreto del tuo cuore,
amico mio!

Dillo a me, solo a me,
in confidenza.
Tu che sorridi così gentilmente,
dimmelo piano,
il mio cuore lo ascolterà,
non le mie orecchie.

La notte è profonda,
la casa silenziosa,
i nidi degli uccelli
tacciono nel sonno.

Rivelami tra le lacrime esitanti,
tra sorrisi tremanti,
tra dolore e dolce vergogna
il segreto del tuo cuore.

Rabrindranath Tagore




Monday, October 10, 2011

La baguette...French bread stick

Have you ever seen those photos of French people

 with a beret on their head, and a long bread stick 

under their arm? That bread stick is called a 

baguette...


The French live differently from Americans and Canadians (except in Québec) 
and many other nationalities. The baguette is a perfect example, it's purchased just before you need to eat it, and you would never use it on the second day unless you don't mind really stale hard bread which is hard. 

Such a versatile piece of food, la baguette is simple to eat. Break off a portion, spread with peanut butter or jam for breakfast, ham and salad for lunch, or paté for cocktails. You will not need butter, simply a small plate with a thread of extra virgin olive oil and a trickle of balsamic vinegar, mixed together... 
Heaven!


Like most French words, pain derives 
from Latin where panis is "bread." The literal meaning of the word baguette is stick shaped loaf. The long thin loaf became popular in the early 
18 th century London, its rep brought back 
from Paris by traveling Englishmen. 
The French word, with a diminutive ending added to the root, came from Latin baculum "stick".

Homemade bread in Québec is pain d'habitant or pain de ménage. A less felicitous translation of pain d'habitant is "farmers bread" because the word habitant has very special importance in provincial history, one worth exploring. It is part of many Québec food phrases like bouillon d’habitant "country soup." 

Photo, from the web

Baking bread in an outdoor Québec oven.
La cottura del pane in un forno all'aperto del Québec.
La cuisson du pain dans un four en plein air du Québec.

Etymology of the Word Habitant...

The immediate Latin root of the 13th century French word habitant "dweller, owner, inhabitant" is the Latin verb habitare, a frequentative form of the older verb habere "to have, to possess." Habere was also used extensively in Latin as one of the auxiliary verbs to build complex verb tenses. Other auxiliary verbs known to students of European languages include German haben, sein, werden, dürfen, or French avoir, être, pouvoir and devoir.

The prime semantic force of Latin frequentative verb forms was to indicate repetition of the action signified by the standard verb. Thus volare in Latin means "to fly." Its frequentative form volitare means "to flap wings repeatedly, to flit, to dart across the sky." Likewise habitare’s basic sense is "to have or possess repeatedly or persistently" and thence "to occupy (land), to reside, to abide, to dwell, to remain in a place." Its present participle habitans, habitantis eventually produces English nouns like inhabitant and our French word under discussion today, l’habitant.

In France, recorded in print by the year 1654 CE, un habitant was a citizen to whom the king had granted land in one of the colonies of France. By the late seventeenth century in La Nouvelle France, in territory eventually to become the Canadian province of Québec, the word habitant had become a synonyn for standard continental French words like colon "colonist" and cultivateur "farmer."

In the 19th and early 20th century, the word habitant in English referred to anyone from rural Québec, not always in a pejorative sense.
(© 2008 William Gordon Casselman)

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... SULLA VITA

Foto di Malu84_m

La vita non offre piacere più grande del

 superare le difficoltà e passare da un

 successo ad un altro, del formare nuovi

 desideri e di vederli realizzati.

(Samuel Johnson)



A Sweet or Bitter Coffee,

inseparable companion

of life. Of days and

nights spent in creating,

chasing, fighting, dreaming,

on the wings of imagination and

of reality, to taste

the essence of our soul

wandering free, to continue

to hope, to free

emotions, feelings

and stop with the words,

from dawn to sunset.