lummi island wine tasting march 3, ’17

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Bread this week

dscn1364 (Modified)Black Pepper Walnut- this bread made its debut last summer to rave reviews and has become a reliable favorite Made with a mix of bread flour and fresh milled whole wheat and rye flours, toasted walnuts and a generous portion of cracked black pepper to give it a nice spicy bite. A great bread to go with meat and cheese -$5/loaf

Rosemary Olive Oil – Made with a portion of the flour that is preferemented overnight to enhance the flavor and jump start the natural enzyme activity in fermentation. Made with bread flour and fresh milled whole white wheat, a little olive oil keeps the crumb soft and fresh rosemary from the garden gives it a nice flavor boost. This bread has a crisp crust and great flavor and is a good all around bread – $5/loaf

And for a bit of pastry –

Palmiers – aka “Elephant Ears”- A buttery puff pastry dough is rolled out, spread with sugar before being rolled up and sliced and baked to a delicious caramelized sugar goodness. Peter says these are one of his favorites so get your order in before he orders them all! I can only make a limited number and when they’re gone, they’re gone and you have to wait for the next appearance- 4/$5

 

Kicking and screaming into 2017

This weekend we reopen on our regular schedule after our winter break. Friday nights will continue on the Janice and Sue format, with our helping out as needed so as not to fatigue these Blessed Volunteers who have turned the lights and heat on the last two months of Fridays, and poured Wine for the Faithful, i.e., mostly Wine Club members.

Even after having experienced it firsthand last Friday, we are still trying to sort out exactly how their structure works. It is reminiscent of the zany explanation in Catch-22 of how Milo Minderbinder’s Officers’ Mess made a profit buying eggs and selling them for less than they cost. All we know is that guests get to pick out a bottle of wine they are curious to taste, pay a variable fee which is somehow calculated on the fly as the evening unfolds, lots of bottles get opened, everyone has a good time, and costs somehow get covered. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯”

The One True Dog 

Last week I talked about a growing Superstition that there is only One True Dog, continually reincarnated as our Next Dharma Teacher. As I mentioned last week, when we lost our Dear Girl Sylvie 10 years ago, I dreamed a dog like Cooper, and a few months later he Manifested in our lives in a most Unlikely way…too Unlikely to be Coincidence, maybe.

So this time while still grieving we threw our Prayers into the Cosmic Yellow Pages by calling Coopie’s breeder to see if any puppies were, you know, going to be available soon. And she said (I’m not making this up) “that is so interesting, because I had one puppy ready to head off to his ‘Forever Home’ (as she calls it) today, and due to an unfortunate circumstance he has just become available again.” So we went to meet him. We liked him. Tator liked him. Well, let’s say she tolerated him. Which is a Big Deal, as there are only about five dogs on the Planet she tolerates, which is to say she did not run directly at him at High Speed, Bite Him on the Nose, and Issue him a Ticket on, you know, General Principles.

His kennel name was Yule Tide (born Xmas Eve), which we have shortened to Ulee, a sometimes nickname for “Ulysses,” as introduced in a 1990’s Peter Fonda movie about a beekeeper, and which because of it’s many vowels, often appear in Crossword Puzzles. Our goal is for Ulee to meet 100 people in the next 100 days, of all sizes and shapes, in all kinds of Outfits and Hairdos, so he won’t be Weirded Out by People doing Their Things.

There’s no Cure for losing a beloved companion animal. But a new manifestation is the only Therapy we have been able to come up with over the years, and though we just brought Ulee home last night, he is already a Sweet Comfort. We hope to have him at the wine shop a little bit this weekend so you can all meet him and Welcome him to The World…!

This week’s wine tasting

Maryhill Viognier ’15        Washington       $14
Vibrant aromas of orange zest, honeysuckle, and pink grapefruit; flavors of lemon, pear, and white peach. The mouthfeel is delicate, yet full-bodied, with lingering notes of fresh flowers.

Coopers Creek Marlborough Pinot Noir ’10   NZ    $14
Mid-red, going slightly brick on the edge. Dark cherry and strawberry on the nose, but with savoury, earthy, forest floor complexities and velvety tannins.

Rubino Marmorelle Rosso ’14      Italy        $11
Negroamaro-Malvasia Nera blend; aromas of cherry, black currants, blueberries and blackberries; hints of nutmeg and cocoa that follow through on the warm and satisfying palate.

St. Cosme Little James Basket Press Grenache ’16      France $11
An old favorite from an ongoing solera* with an aromatic nose of cassis, cherry and lavender; rustic Old World style, with a firm mineral spine giving clarity and lift to the dark berry and bitter cherry flavors.

Lar de Maia 5°  ’13     Spain   $15
Tempranillo, Garnacha and Syrah; mouth-filling notes of concentrated fruit leather with lingering notes of cherry and pomegranate; lively and fruity with hints of vanilla, coconut and liquorice.

 

Wine Tasting
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lummi island wine tasting february 24 ’17

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Bread this week

dscn1364 (Modified)Whole Wheat Levain – made with levain, also known as sourdough, which is built up over the course of a several days before being incorporated with bread flour as well as fresh milled whole wheat and a bit of fresh milled rye, then fermented overnight in the refrigerator. A long cold ferment gives this bread a less sour flavor for sourdough than does a warmer and shorter ferment. A great all around bread full of flavor that makes great toast -$5/loaf

Pear Buckwheat – Like one of the breads last week this is made with a poolish where a part of the water and flour are fermented overnight. In this case the buckwheat flour is used in the poolish. The poolish is mixed with more bread flour for the final dough. The addition of toasted walnuts and dried pears complements the flavor of the earthiness of the buckwheat flour. This bread has great flavor – $5/loaf

And for a bit of pastry…

Brioche au Chocolate – A rich brioche dough full of eggs, butter and sugar, rolled out and spread with pastry cream before sprinkling with dark chocolate. Folded over and cut into pieces these are really delicious! Be sure and get your orders in early as always with pastry I can only make a limited number and when they’re gone, they’re gone and you have to wait for the next appearance- 2/$5

Open Friday, closed Saturday

sun-fogLast week, just home, we were introduced to the Janice & Sue Show at the wine shop, which we had, you know, heard about, but really we had never Actually Experienced what happens in the wine shop when we are Away.

So Here’s the Deal: people come in to pick up their bread. Someone (anyone) chooses a bottle of wine from the displays and buys it for the community tasting. That bottle is then opened and distributed, like, you  know, Loaves and Fishes, until Empty.

Meanwhile, other people float in and pick additional wines, which are shared in similar manner. Bottom line: a Good Time is had by All!

All you need to know is that we are open Friday, 2/24 under this Club model, and closed Saturday.

We will reopen on our regular schedule next weekend, March 3-4. For now, please join us Friday night for the last of the Winter Improv Tastings!

Dreams of Sylvie

sylvie1Sylvie was a Blue Merle Australian Shepherd that we brought home as a puppy in 1994. She was from herding lines, very focused. Always On Duty, she rarely closed her eyes except when sleeping in her crate. At precisely 8pm each night, she would stand up, jog to the laundry room door (where the dog crates were), and bark. That meant she was ready to go Off Duty and turn in for the night…and, oh yes, get her Bedtime Cookie…!

Sadly, in winter of ’06-’07 Sylvie developed lung cancer, and we lost her close to her thirteenth birthday in February, 2007. For some months, in Despair, I meditated on how we might bring her back to us. and at some point I had a strange and lucid image of two dogs. The foreground dog I have not yet seen in Real Life, a sort of Aussie/Corgie mix, no idea what to make of that. The background dog was  clearly a red merle Australian Shepherd with unusual broad red and white stripes around its body. So imagine my surprise a few months later when a peculiar set of circumstances brought us Cooper…a red merle Aussie with unusual broad red and white stripes around his body. After taking him home we learned later that like his Aunt Sylvie he liked to go to bed at precisely 8 pm. Superstitious or not, it is all comforting fodder for metaphysical speculation.

Now that we have lost Coopie, we again lean toward the One Dog Theory of the Universe: there is only One Dog, in infinite Manifestations, whose Angelic Mission is to reflect our Basic Natures back to us in every moment. Therefore, we have Officially Posted our Ad in the Cosmic Yellow Pages for the next incarnation of Our One True Dog…

 

Wine Tasting
Comments Off on lummi island wine tasting feb 17 ’17

lummi island wine tasting feb 17 ’17

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Bread this week

dscn1364 (Modified)Levain with Dried Cherries & Pecans – made with levain, also known as sourdough, which is built up over the course of a several days before being incorporated with bread flour as well as fresh milled whole wheat. Then loaded up with dried cherries and toasted pecans. The dried fruit and nuts in this bread go really well with meats and cheese -$5/loaf

Poolish Ale – Made with a preferment known as a poolish where a part of the water and flour are fermented overnight. In this case the water in the poolish is replaced with beer. Fermenting overnight gives a jump start on the natural enzymatic action and gluten development. The poolish is mixed with more bread flour and fresh milled whole wheat. This bread has great flavor and is a great all around bread – $5/loaf

And for a bit of pastry…(drum roll……..)

Bear Claws!  Made with an enriched danish style dough that is full of milk sugar, eggs and butter, rolled out, spread with an almond paste filling that has more sugar and a bit of cinnamon to round out the flavor then rolled up and sliced into bear claw shaped pieces. After baking topped with a honey glaze, ’cause bears love honey! Yum! 2/$5

We’re back…

dscn1410 (Modified)We got home tonight (Thursday) on the 7:20 ferry, after driving from Portland this morning in heavy rain. The weather got better as we moved north, only to find the Major Detour around Ferndale due to flooding on Slater Road and Marine Drive.

We are looking forward to seeing you all Friday evening. Our intention is to participate in whatever it is that happens in the wine shop when we are away, and we are very much looking forward to seeing you all!

 

 

…Sort of…

dscn1748-modifiedThere is no easy way to say this; for the past two weeks it has been impossible to mention without crying, and it is still too tender to provide details.

The short version is that shortly after we left on January 23, Cooper’s cancer started overwhelming his defenses. In southern Oregon new x-rays revealed widespread intrusion of tumors into his lungs. His breathing became increasingly labored over the next several days. A last-ditch antibiotic against any complicating infections failed to provide him relief, and we were forced to let him go on February 1, two weeks ago.

Coopie was a beautiful, resourceful, playful, creative, and loving being who constantly manifested his Aliveness with Style and Grace. And maybe because we were uniquely blessed to have had him in our lives these last eight-plus years, his absence is a Tangible Void. All of us who lose beloved dogs know this particular Grief. As our friend Leigh put it, over time the pain of loss will get mellowed by the sweetness of warm memories. In the meantime there is a Big, Big Hole in our lives…

 

 

 

 

Wine Tasting
Comments Off on lummi island wine tasting february 10, ’17

lummi island wine tasting february 10, ’17

(note: some photos will enlarge when clicked)

Bread this week

dscn1364 (Modified)Pain Meunier – also known as miller’s bread as it was developed to honor the millers who mill the wheat. Always a popular selection. Made with bread flour and fresh milled whole wheat as well as cracked wheat and wheat germ. This bread pre-ferments a portion of the flour, water, yeast and salt overnight before mixing the final dough. A delicious bread that makes great toast -$5/loaf

Fig Anise – Ever since introducing this bread last summer it has become very popular. Also made with bread flour and freshly milled whole wheat it includes dried figs, honey and anise. Lovely mediterranean flavors that make this bread go well with meats and cheeses- $5/loaf

And for a bit of pastry –

Chocolate Babka Rolls – Made with an enriched dough that is full of sugar, eggs and butter, rolled out, spread with a dark chocolate filling made with more butter, sugar and a touch of cinnamon. These are delicious. Be sure and get your orders in early as always with pastry I can only make a limited number- 2/$5

February schedule update

dscn1348 (Modified)We remind our Faithful that although the shop is officially “closed” through February, it will be open for a number of Bread Fridays over the next several weeks, with Sue A. pouring.

Those of you on the bread-order email list will hear from Janice the weekend before each such Friday, and we will update this blog each Friday AM to confirm schedules. Through most of February, tastings will be Impromptu and communal, and purchases are, of course, encouraged and welcome! 

We will reopen on our regular schedule either Feb 24 or Mar 3.

 

Sonoma Rain

IMG_20170209_094131676While it has been snowing all week on Lummi Island, it has been raining all week here in Sonoma. Today is promised an additional 1-2″ accumulation. The ground is totally saturated, so it sits in pools or runs to lower ground. Here is a pool on top of the lawn (yes, there is grass under there.) Supposed to get a few dry days starting tomorrow, when we will start our trek home.
sonoma rain 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wine Tasting