I like to cook. I’m always coming up with new recipes when I’m bored. I can make mac and cheese in about fifty different ways. I love to experiment with flavors and wine pairings. I find creativity in the kitchen both relaxing and rewarding. I also like to eat. I find it really distressing that food has calories, particularly cake. But that’s another post for another day.
During the week, I tend to cook meals that make leftovers. I’m home all day, but Graham isn’t, so I don’t want to spend every night hanging out in the kitchen when I could be spending time with him. Tonight, we had leftover pasta with sweet pea and basil pesto, roasted red peppers, and chunks of fresh mozzarella cheese. Delicious, right? But still leftovers. So to jazz up our second-night pasta dinner, we opened a bottle of wine. I’ve already mentioned my firm belief that wine has magical powers, and one of those powers is to make any meal just a little more special. Even leftovers.
We decided on a rosé tonight, because it’s Spring and because the subtle sweetness and hint of pepper in the pesto sauce could handle a little bit of acidity in a wine. Here’s the bottle we opened:
Sunset Hills is a Virginia vineyard and winery located not far from Purcellville in a beautifully restored classic red barn. The owners are lovely people, and the staff are always friendly. The tasting room can handle a crowd. Graham and I have been members there for a few years (it was the first wine club we joined!), so we’ve accumulated a lot of Sunset Hills wines. This one might be my favorite.
I’d never seen rosé made from Cabernet Franc before we picked up this bottle. I love Cabernet Franc, and I think it does particularly well when grown in smoky, tobacco-y Virginia soil. This is a fun wine. It’s a delicate pink color, with just a little hint of copper – it looks gorgeous in a glass on a sunny day (not that today was sunny). It has a delicate, floral nose with some subtle notes of strawberry and melon. The best part, though, is that it’s delicious. It’s not as bright or acidic as a classic rosé, and it’s not very sweet. The Cabernet Franc doesn’t manifest as tobacco, or smoke, or green bell pepper. It just gives the wine a roundness and a fullness, and even a meatiness, that you don’t find in an average rosé. This wine is a study in balance – brightness with fullness, body with subtlety. It’s a red drinker’s rosé…if you like a medium-bodied red.
Wednesdays are tough. It’s the middle of the week, you’re starting to get tired of waking up early, and Friday still feels really far away. Leftovers and wine are the best recommendations I have to make it just a little better. Because like I said, wine has magical powers.