Oh, the joys of wine!

I can’t remember the last time I blogged anything about food or drink, but after a few days in the Napa Valley of California, it’s inevitable.

The crush was in process.  Wineyards sparkled with foil bits tied on the vines to keep the birds away. The weather was the spectacular autumn that Northern California can deliver.   And the wine.  I used to scoff at wine tasting in my severe youth (actually I didn’t even drink out of high principle and a desire to annoy).  Well, I had a Gewurtz that was a delight – just the right fruitiness when it came into your mouth and a lovely dry finish.  And yes, it paired wonderfully with Vietnamese food.

But that was nothing next to the Sterling Malvasia Bianca.  Bordering on a dessert wine with a perfume-like fragrance, a marvelous combination of pears and honey – but still with a crisp finish.  And my research shows that it’s one of the most ancient varietals, coming from Greece to Sardinia and Sicily and thence to California.

I won’t even get started on the food!  St. Augustine is a great town and we do some great things with seafood, but California is "food fanatic" country.  Again, since age and growing good sense have enabled me to eat without lecturing everyone else on the evils of the flesh, I ate moderately and, oh, so happily.  Best moment – a fricassee de homard at Angele.

Now it’s back to real life – and a lighter diet.  But what a time we had!

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About Mary Jane Ballou

Mary Jane Ballou’s life in sacred music began in a children’s choir at the age of three. Instrumental music waited until her piano lessons started in primary school. And her music life remains a joyous pairing of sacred vocal music and the instrumental repertoire of Spain, Ireland, and Scotland.

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