Friday, December 20, 2013

Distraction: friend or foe

When I was in college, I had the keen ability to focus on my studies like it was nobody's business.  I was in school and worked full time.  I had no social life and was too busy to care of its stance lacking in my life.  No regrets ever surfaced and I was completely fulfilled when I graduated.

Since then, my life has multiplied in layers.  Not only do I maintain a full time work schedule, but being a mother of two is a full time and a half gig on its own.  It's the best job I've ever held but it comes with an expense and I am not only referring to the monetary kind.  I confess to being a worrier and I am constantly thinking of their well being 24-7.  I don't have days off and it will be a position I will hold honorably until I pass.  Even still, I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world.

Yet in the midst of my crazed life, I often forget to chill out.  I envy those who find time to read a book in its entirety and practice yoga four times a week as I once did not too long ago.  I definitely contest that one is responsible for his/her own actions and in this case I have myself to blame.

So why the blog title?

I recently had a distraction.  Call it what you wish, but an incident that caused me to slow down and take softer breaths.  I am usually not a fan of distractions as I believe in being focused at all times, but having experienced "a time of reflection", I am thankful.  It reminded me that I am not merely defined by my being my mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a service professional, a friend, etc., but by Linda:  the individual I am that came to be through my life experiences.  I don't want to forget her because then I would be neglecting the dire importance of keeping her soul intact.

So I will search within, each day going forward.  I will pick up that book I've been etching to read, follow the recipe of rose water shortbread cookies, study the grand crus of Burgundy, and forget about the laundry so I could have quality time with my children.

My soul will thank me and as a result I'll probably smile more often.  This in turn will spread the cheer as I do believe smiling is contagious.  Thank you distraction, for this awakening. You've proven to be a friend.  A true one at that.  You're invited to come back at anytime.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Fall back

It is that time of year.  When the leaves begin to change color and we remember why fall is so mesmerizing.  The colors we encounter during the seasons' change are those that are warm and inviting.  Inviting you to sit back and chill.  Daylight savings time is this weekend and we will all gain one more glorious hour and basque in its sweet render.  Just try to avoid thinking about the fact that the days are shorter as the night turns deep blue an hour earlier.

Fall back.  The term itself has caused me to reflect on the year.  The decisions I've made, the cheers and the disappointments, realizations, and the big one:  me.  I changed a lot this year.  And it's for the good cause it's forced me to put everything in perspective.  It's made it possible for me to preserve what is true, conserve things that can be fixed and convert anger into positive energy.  It took me a long time to realize that I can't save the world, but I can make a difference by serving as an advocate for harmony.

It's that simple.  When our competitive nature becomes fierce then we lose sight of harmony.  The need to have more, to be better than others, to succeed big.  It's not to say that we must give up striving for happiness or being successful in the workplace.  The need to survive is dire.  It's become a dog eat dog world.  As a result, sometimes our blinders get in the way of considering the whole picture.  Where did the simple childhood dreams that consisted of being content and among warmth and comfort go?

It is with great sadness that I admit I exist within the last generation before the internet, cell phones and social media/networking boom arrived full force.  When I witness what children these days are exposed to, I think it's a shame.  We need to work harder to save them.  We need to show them how to be real people and connect how we once did on a regular basis.  How to hear a live voice more often than read texts.  To send letters rather than emails.  The feeling of anticipation and excitement from waiting to hear a loved one's voicemail after returning from a long day's of work.  To be patient.  To truly understand the meaning of this and realize that this world of immediate access to everything is actually more stimulating than we need and not for the greater good.

To fall back to a time when people sat in their backyards and chatted with each other without the interruption or distraction of the internet, cell phones and social media apps. And we actually get to know each other.  And there is harmony.  I want this back.

Make simplicity the norm.  Fall back.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Vitamin D, the next level

I woke up much earlier than I preferred because the sun was shining so strongly through my window this morning.  It enticed me to venture outside, sit on my side steps and take in its rays when most gentle.

In my age, I have been super cautious about wearing sun screen.  I curse myself often for never having done the same when I was younger and tanning was the latest craze.  Skin cancer scares me, as any other cancer would, but if I am unfortunate to be diagnosed with the former then I know I only have myself to blame.  However, since I knew I was only going to sit out for a bit and to be quite honest, the smell of sunscreen makes me nauseous and because my kids had not woken up yet, I wanted to steal my free time as quickly as I could.

As I let the sun sink into my skin I pondered about my last full physical in January.  My doctor had told me I had a Vitamin D deficiency and she recommended I take a very high dose weekly for about six months.  Wow, really, a Vitamin D deficiency?  How does something like that happen?  Not to fret, I knew she could have told me worse, but my journey thereafter taught me a bit about this glorious necessary element we all need in our lives.


  • It is a fat soluble vitamin which means it's stored in your body (such as your liver and kidney) and takes much longer to escape than water soluble vitamins (e.g. Vitamins C and B9)
  • It is the most useful substance inside your body and beneficial when consumed on a daily basis
  • It is measured by International Units, also known as IU
  • It ensures strong bone health, preventing bones from becoming brittle, thin and deformed
  • It promotes strong, sturdy teeth which in turn creates good mouth hygiene 
  • It reduces a greater chance of inflammation
  • It promotes calcium in the digestive tract
  • It is found in relatively small doses in food sources such as 1 cup of milk (102 IU), fortified rice (81 IU), fortified orange juice (53 IU) and salmon (435 IU) to name a few
  • Another well known source of Vitamin D is the sun with skin exposure of 10 to 15 minutes
  • The daily recommended Vitamin D dose for people between the ages of 1 - 70 is 600 IU 
When my doctor told me I had a Vitamin D deficiency, she prescribed a weekly dose of 50,000 IU, divided by seven days a week came out to about 7,142 International Units a day. Sounds like a lot, but I was apparently lacking in this department.

These days I soak up the sun when it's around, take a daily dose of 1,000 IU and consume more food sources that contain ample IU of Vitamin D.  I am exercising more, maintaining a healthier diet and drinking an average of 70 ounces of water.  I am feeling much better these days.  I am thankful for my health.  And all it took was learning my Vitamin D levels were dangerously low.  There is good in all things.  I am glad that it made me aware. Hopefully my post sheds some light for you as well.

I always like to part on an inspirational note.  This was born as a result of my learning to listen to what my body needs.  I have even taken it to the next level.  By becoming a better listener overall.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

forgetting Sam Marshall...

We all have one Sam, or Sarah that plays us to the core.  That we fell helplessly in love with and who probably never loved us back, at least not the same way we loved them.  Who took advantage of our feelings because we gave them so much, too much...

I got weak at the knees when I first saw Sam from afar.  I knew instantly he was going to mean something to me, I just didn't know what it was at first.  I was young and naive, to say the least.  I wasn't even looking for anyone to like, until he came by and took my world by storm, heavy ones.  I waited anxiously until my work colleague left his side and casually worked up a nerve to introduce myself.  I figured, what did I have to lose.  He was my boss (crazy, I know) and new to the team in a small office job I took up while in my junior year of college.  The good news was I only worked part-time so I didn't see him as much.  I figured this was for the best since chances were, nothing would ever happen while we worked together.  He was a few years older than me, but much more mature than most guys I knew.  We hit it off right away.  He always complimented my work ethics which meant a lot to me.  He had a cute way of letting me know he favored me more than the other girls in the office.  One of my favorite first memories of his flirting with me came when I was making copies in the copy room.  There was a glass partition that separated the room from the cubicles, he surprised me by tapping on the glass to get my attention, once I turned around, he merely flashed his adorable smile.  I was swooned forever...

Shortly thereafter I left the job because my senior year of college commanded a lot more of my time and I couldn't juggle both work and school.  I lost touch with him and it saddened me deeply.  The last time I saw him was on my last day at work and he asked if I wanted to grab a beer after work.  I was torn beyond belief.  I had already made plans with some of my co-workers and I just couldn't blow them off.  It was a decision I pondered on for months after I left.  I know I did the right thing, but I had always wondered what would have happened if we had that beer...

It would be almost one year later before I'd run into him again.  Ironically enough it was at a bar while we were both on the way out.  He saw me first and called my name.  When I turned around and saw him there, my heart was beating so fast.  We chatted for a bit while our friends stood around wondering who the other person was we were talking to.  We exchanged numbers and planned on meeting for coffee at the end of the week.  That week took forever to pass.  When Friday came, I changed three times before settling on just being casual in my favorite t-shirt and jean shorts.  It was a beautiful early summer day...

It was as if time stood still for us.  At least that's how I felt.  He was easy to talk to, but I always sensed a private side to him.  As if he had been hurt deeply before and could never let go of that memory.  From that day on, we were inseparable.  It was a very deep relationship, in ways I had never experienced before...

The relationship lasted for eight months before he turned distantly cold and removed from me.  He claimed a urgent job opportunity was moving him away, but I never understood what happened between us.  I still wonder about it sometimes.  He was the love that I never forgot and that took possession of my heart like no one else ever did...

I wonder how he is from time to time.  I wonder if he ever feels bad for leaving me so abruptly.  It tore me apart and left me angry.  It was as if there no longer existed a validation of our time together.  Sometimes I think the intensity of our connection scared him and that's why he left. Whatever it was, he broke my heart like no other, so much that forgetting Sam Marshall was something that never came easy to me...

Still, having loved Sam taught me to let go of my fear and that love isn't hopeless.  That trusting in your own emotions does make you vulnerable, but that's how you feel alive. That taking chances with love comes with a new experience that will never be repeated. That in order to make yourself stronger, you have to learn to let go, so the next time you fall in love, you'll be wiser, and you'll understand a true sense of love, as it should exist between two people.  With admiration, passion and true willingness...

Monday, July 22, 2013

Sans social media

Last Christmas my parents got both of my children the Nook reading tablet.  I suggested it mainly for my daughter as she is an avid reader, but according to their old school ways of parenting, they couldn't get one for her and not my son.  Seven months later that reading tablet has turned into a technology friendlier way for them to communicate with their friends through a free texting app called Text Now (they don't own cell phones, yet all of their friends do - sign of suburbia living).

Prior to their acquiring the Nook, my kids would always complain that I spent too much time on my own apps, specifically Twitter and Instagram and would often question who I loved more:  social media or them.  Of course I always answered the latter, but now that they've busied themselves with the lure of apps that are available on their reading tablet, I felt it most important to take this point further by setting an example.  So on June 13, I made a vow to them that I wouldn't access my social media accounts for a month.  To resist the urge to pop in, I even went as far as to delete them from my phone.  Yes folks, I went cold turkey.

At first it felt strange, especially working in the restaurant industry, it's extremely beneficial when you know what's going on in the hospitality world.  There are constant changes and if you don't keep up it does affect you to a degree.  I stand by this wholeheartedly.  But I have to admit, it felt good not to have to worry about what chef was hired at where, new restaurant openings, recent reviews, which friend has been to the latest hot spot and what specials/attractions were going on in town.  It almost reminded me of the days back when we didn't have the instant access to such news that we have now. When life was actually normal, less hectic.

I am spending a lot more time hanging out with the kids since it's been summer break.  I feel like I am getting to know them in a different light.  They are growing up and changing so fast.  I wish I could pause some moments because before I know it, they won't want to hang out with me anymore.  It's been enlightening.  It's caused me to reflect on what's most important and how I would never trade them for anything else in the world.

I don't know if my giving up social media for a month had any immediate effect on them, but it sure did on me and if that's to count for anything, it will in the long run have a positive influence on them.  It definitely taught me to take breaks.  Reflection is a necessary tool for the soul especially in the fast moving world we live in now.  Realizing that we can live without most material things is a very crucial trait one must carry through hard times.  Those things come and go.  It's the people we love that we can't do without. They are priceless and for that, being reminded of this made the lesson of sans social media so much more worth it.

Hanging out with my fan club at Big Star

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

when in Paris

I've never been to Paris.  And at the rate I'm going in my life, I most likely never will.  At this point, all I could do is dream and wonder what it'd be like or live through the experiences of others that have been.

The reason this post came about is because two nights ago I dreamt I was living in Paris and it felt so real I had convinced my waking self that I had actually been there.  I remember looking straight up the Eiffel tower and being swooned by its majesty, how grand it stood. I remember the cozy Parisian home I lived in and the roommates that came and went.  I remember feeling free and lost in life and not a thing bothered my soul.  I was content. And for an hour after waking from my wonderful dream, I had sighed in its wonder:  the wonder of Paris.

Two days later and I'm back in the land of reality.  And if there's anything I have taken from my dream experience are two things:  a) I can choose to make my dreams wherever I reside and b) I should lose myself to life in all that surrounds me.  Truth is, I have a lot to be thankful for, but we as humans are always reaching for beyond, for more.

It's like life is a drug and once we become immune to one aspect of it, we look for another piece to impart us a new high.

And not that reaching for bigger and better things isn't a good thing, it's the selfish trance that we fall under that makes us lose the bigger picture, or smaller at that.  For me, it's my kids.  I never imagined being a mother, but fate chose that route for me and I truly believe in doing so, it brought about the most unimaginable gift I have ever known:  unconditional love.

So I may never go to Paris and that's ok.  I will survive.  That's kinda been my motto since my early college years.  I will still have dreams, both asleep and awake.  I will still remember standing next to the Eiffel tower and feeling small, yet alive.  In the grand scheme of things, it's kinda a metaphor for the true meaning of life.  It doesn't matter how small we may feel next to this large world we live in, it only means we have a better view. It's just up to us how we choose to view it.

Take it all in.  Enjoy the whole view.

Look up and be in awe.

My motto in college.  Personalized license plate.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

greener grass

I won't deny it, I miss smoking weed, but not enough to partake in the consuming habit it once was.  With a temper on my side, it soothed my mind, helped release tension, and made me write like a rock star.

writer's block

We all need inspiration.  Anyone who denies its need is lying to his/herself.  Inspiration can represent anything, but it's a priceless concoction that moves the soul along.  It may be aiming to fit in a new swim suit after working out for six weeks, a promotion that comes with a raise after that long worked on project has been completed, or a vacation in the future that's way overdue, compliments of your tax return.  As humans, when we know that a pot of gold awaits us at the end of the tunnel, we use that sight down the road to push, ignite and inspire us to work towards "point B."  In my case, inspiration gives me ammunition to write stories that I hope in turn will inspire thought.

the grass isn't always greener on the other side

I know this lesson better than anyone.  I am living through it now.  It amazes me how often I fall flat on my face because I think one change will make a dramatic impact.  "Say it isn't so?"  I bite my lip in hopes it is a bad dream that brought me to my current steps.  Yet it isn't a bad dream, but the realization that writer's block has taken me hostage and truth be told, I've been missing inspiration as a part of my day-to-day.

I have been pondering this for a few days now and my latest dream from last night's slumber brought about an obvious answer.  It doesn't require climbing the gate to get to the other side.  We make our successes by our actions, driven and focused as we project them. This is anyone's that gets us going.

When we're hungry, we eat.  When we're tired, we sleep.  These are examples of how our energy is fueled.  So I ask you this?  How do you acquire greener grass?  Bingo, you water it.

Find your motivation.  It's out there - sometimes you have to dig for it, but it's there. It's an essential part of how we grow as a person and knowing when you have succeeded makes it all the more glorious.

So what's my current inspiration?  To make everything I touch better.  To treat others nicely.  To smile and laugh every day because it's a "sure cure" that always makes us feel alive.  More amazing than this, it's contagious and if everyone's doing it then inspiration will grow abundantly.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

a million pieces

It's funny how when you least suspect it, something in your life happens and you turn around and your past is gone.  When moving forward takes you a few steps further than you're ready for.  When you hear from an old friend who reminds you of something you believed in a long time ago.  When another friend shares some news and it's unexpected.  When a colleague turns evil and you're told to just go with it.

A million pieces.

That was last month.  I can't deny having racked my brain trying to digest it all.  I'm not looking into the glass, I'm inside.  My astrological sign defines me as one who dissects everything I come into contact with because I am constantly struggling with making sense of the world that revolves around me.  I see math problems minus their answers.

I'm over the drama of the industry I work in.  It's life and it's at a cost, so let mine be mine and yours be yours.  We don't need to advertise complications.  I admit that growing up in a Christian home sheltered me from the things I know today, but I wouldn't trade those lessons for anything.  It is within those lessons that I bore a heart - something most people struggle with displaying.  We spend so much time running around, attending meetings, keeping appointments, meeting deadlines, blowing people off because there is never enough time.

Where did all the time go?

For once, I'd like to have a "frankly darling, I don't give a damn" moment and be perfectly cool with it.  So I'm throwing in the towel this month.  Trying my hand in a different view of life.  Maybe instead of incomplete numbers, I should be seeing life as music notes flowing along the day, each tune changing with the scene it brings about.

And I shall write more as I envision these musical notes.  Writing has always been therapeutic for me; it's cheap, goes by my schedule, and enables me to practice writing big words.  This reminds me of the moral of a movie my brother gave me many Christmases ago.  About a girl who merely cared about doing good and never thinking about herself in the interim or getting lost in the drama.  Goodness always rewards itself with goodness - you could never fail in this process.

So there you have it.  Moving forward, my million pieces will represent goodness and music sheets.  It'll play these tunes as the day moves along.  You'll hear the song on the radio that will represent whatever your heart desires at that very moment.  And happiness will soar abound.

And suddenly your heart will feel complete as the song as you make it.

All you have to do is listen and let go.

View life as a music sheet, changing with each scene

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Swooned by bacon

Oscar Meyer won me as a child with its cured meat
every Saturday, without fail, I’d devour the treat
Thankful to my dear mother who never cut me off
four perfect strips, crispy edges and center soft
Then I grew and I knew, it would never leave
the love had grown into layers of fat BLTs
Four times two would do, joined by tomato slice
a club of toast, mayo, and lettuce means repeat twice
Well hello, I said to pork belly, its grand name
you’ve grown into this decadent thick cut of game
Who kept you from me, I’ll cut his arm and dispose
honorable fat, slutty meat pieces, goodness composed
Oh bacon how you carried me through heartache and clout
comfort food was named after you, of this there’s no doubt
Forever faithful I’ll be as I bow down on my knees
no food in the world more adorned, never ceases to please
Where there is harmony, people share a common love and wish
every chef lives his childhood through his showcased dish
Bacon Fest Chicago, an example, unlike no other
bringing all together in peace, bacon sisters and brothers

Note:  this was my submission to the Bacon Fest Poetry Contest 2013.  I did not make the semi-final cut, but I'm proud of my own regardless.

Sexy meat turned into...

Sizzling slices...I can smell it now

Who doesn't love this guy?

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

16 wines, 16 minutes

Last Tuesday was just one of them days.  I arrived at the Union Station about 11:45 a.m. for Gambero Rosso's 2013 Tre Bicchieri tasting and found myself the first in line.  Long story short, I realized it didn't start until 2 p.m. which limited my available time frame.  I became determined.  That is how I ended up trying 16 wines in 16 minutes.

That's power tasting.  Obviously I couldn't take notes but having worked in a Italian restaurant that boasted over 650 wines in two and a half years - all my memories of tasting Italian wines came right back to me.

Gioacchino Garofoli Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico Superiore Podium 2010
  • Garofoli is the oldest winery in Marche and one I have never tried.  I adore Verdicchio and it hails so deservingly here in this region.  Fresh fruit flavors with an elegant body content, this racy wine is the perfect answer to any season of the year.  This wine can evolve and would make a great addition to any list regardless of its menu.
Cleto Chiarli Lambrusco di Sorbara del Fondatore 2011
Cleto Chiarli Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro Vigneto Enrico Cialdini 2011
  • Cleto Chiarli is one of my favorite Lambrusco producers.  They represent such great value with an overabundance of flavor.  There are three strands of Lambrusco and two of them are represented here.  The first one was all about its structure while the second one had me dreaming of its aromatics.  I'd happily take either one with me on a picnic where I could lay under the tree and feed myself prosciutto - even in my lonesome.
Velenosi Rosso Piceno Superiore Roggio del Filare 2008
  • I was Italian in my past life, but Sangiovese is not my preferred poison.  However, when you blend it in a bottle with Montepulciano, it's as if I am reunited with an old friend.  I'm talking black berries - all of them, introducing themselves one at a time as the wine lingers on my tongue.  I love the wines of Rosso Piceno because they have the ability of being rustic and playful at the same time.
Massolino Barolo Vigna Rionda Riserva 2006
  • It's not everyday I get the chance to drink Barolo.  In fact, it's been quite a while since I tasted one worth chatting about but having a taste of this one left me speechless.  I tried Massolino for the first time three years ago and was instantly hooked.  From the Serralunga d'Alba sub-region and made in a modern fashion, it's still one I fancy.  I'm all about the nose and the violets leaped so heavenly into my olfactory receptors that I was quite taken back.  Definitely worth aging - gotta get your hands on one for the cellar.  Actually, I should too.
Tenuta dell'Ornellaia Masseto 2009
  • One Wednesday night back in 2007, I was working the floor selling wine like it was nobody's business.  I was opening up stuff I'd never tasted - I was in my glory.  But nothing prepared me for the wine that would turn out to be my epiphany wine.  That wine was the 1994 Masseto.  It was still young for its time, but so amazingly delicious.  It might have been showing well because most Italian fans don't seem to agree with my viewpoint, but it changed me and I will never pass up a chance to try a new vintage.  Made with 100% Merlot grapes, I'm convinced if Miles were here, I think he'd agree it was pretty special.  And if he didn't, all the more for me.
Villa Sandi Valdobbiadene Superiore di Cartizze Vigna La Rivetta 2011
  • A great stand in, this Prosecco is fresh, with great effervescent and the bottle shape is unique.  Definitely a great product for its price.  After all we're talking bubbles and you could never go wrong there.
Nino Negri Valtellina Sfursat 5 Stelle 2009
  • Another new producer on my list of ones I've never tried, the Valtellina Sfursat is damn tasty.  Chiavennasca is the local name for Nebbiolo in Lombardia and Sfursat is a wine made with dried grapes that has been left out to dry naturally in its air for 100 days.  It's as if you could experience the breeze that surrounds its compound as it develops its flavors.  A wine worthy of aging, it's great with braised meals of all sorts.  Sounds comforting, doesn't it?  Well, take it from me - it really is.
Agricola Punica Barrua 2009
  • That's right, I didn't try the Sassicaia.  I tend to not go for coveted wines, but rather the underdog - if you want to consider the Barrua the underdog because I really don't.  The Punica winery is a joint venture between Tenuta San Guido (Bolgheri, Toscana) and Cantina di Santadi (respectable cooperative in Sardegna).  Consisting of 85 % Carignano (Carignan of France, Cariñena of Spain), 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot, this is a beautiful wine.  It has class, it has structure and it's terrior driven.  Have always loved the Barrua and it's a great offering to someone who wants boldness without breaking the bank.
Cantine Lunae Bosoni Colli di Luni Vermentino Etichetta Nera 2011
Cantine Lunae Bosoni Colli di Luni Vermentino Cavagino 2011
  • I tried the wines of Lunae at last year's Tre Bicchieri and was blown away, so I knew I didn't want to miss them this year.  The Etichetta Nera is fermented in stainless steel, while 40% of Cavagino is fermented in barriques.  While both wines are very different, they both possess outstanding aromatics, dignified structure and evolving originality in their own right.  I couldn't say I like one more than the other, but I will say this:  will a little bit of age these wines will grow up gracefully.  That's pretty impressive for whites coming from the lesser known region of Liguria.
Planeta Chardonnay 2010
  • The Planeta winery possesses six estates, each representing their own territory.  I've never had a white wine from Planeta, let alone a Chardonnay, so when I saw they were featuring one at Tre Bicchieri, I knew I had to try it.  I am a sucker for Italian Chardonnays because they flourish so uniquely from other regions of the world.  In the south, on the island of Sicily, they are over ripe, delightful and voluptuous.  5o% of this wine sees new oak and it doesn't overbear.  The fruits are exotic, the body is textured and the structure is inviting.  You can drink this wine now or keep it for a few years.  However, I recommend if you could find this wine - give it a rest and wait for the future it holds.  I guarantee it will not disappoint.
Cantina Produttori Colterenzio Sauvignon Prail Praedium 2011
Cantina Produttori Colterenzio Chardonnay Altkirch 2011
  • This is, hands down, my favorite region of all Italy.  Not just for its diversity, but also its intricate history and neighboring influences from Germany and Austria.  The Colterenzio is a cooperative that puts forth quality before quantity.  The first wine is a single vineyard offering that is like no other.  Consisting of exotic and citrus fruits, the aromatics on this wine is a cross of springtime and heaven if it ever existed.  The Chardonnay is a cross of tropical fruits and minerality, all stainless steel fermented, its complexity stems from time on its lees.  Both are outstanding representation of northern Italy's great white potential.
Cantina Tramin Gewürztraminer Nussbaumer 2011
  • Traminer is the name for the original vine of what most people know as Gewürztraminer.  The prefix Gewürz meaning "perfumed" lends it credit to the grape's floral and spicy aromatics.  This wine is a perfect representation of the grape.  Its muscat personality combined with ample acidity has earned "three glasses" in the Gambero Rosso wine guide 21 times to date.  That's pretty impressive for a northern white most people don't ever have the chance to indulge in.
Librandi Magno Megonio 2010
  • Maybe you've had Gaglioppo, like Librandi's Duca San Felice Cirò Rosso Classico Superiore Riserva DOC bottling which I sold quite often in the past.  But not many have had the opportunity to try Magliocco.  I wouldn't even know how to quite describe the grape except to say it is most definitely at home to the region of Calabria.  Fermented in stainless steel, it spends just over a year in new French oak and it's stunning.  It's a power wine whose roots can be traced back to Roman times.  Picture this:  old world Malbec marries old world Merlot with ripe black fruits and melted Swiss chocolate.  I'm also thinking a great wine to pair with cheese.  Kinda of reminds me of the sexy high school chemistry teacher whose grey hair and mustache made all the girls swoon.  Wish I could remember his name...

There you have it.  My 16 wines in 16 minutes.  I'll leave you with a picture of my epiphany wine.  Till next time...