Friday, January 22, 2010

Indian Wells Riesling

Last night we had our super easy Spicy Shrimp Pasta with of course, a Riesling. Rieslings pair so well with the spicy. Often we’ve been having the Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling, which is fine, but a few weeks ago the Chateau Ste. Michelle Indian Wells Riesling was on sale for about a buck more than the regular Riesling.

For those of you that don’t know, Chateau Ste. Michelle makes a wide variety of wines; from value ($10-ish) to artist series ($55-65), and the Indian Wells is a step above the Columbia Valley (the lowest level). According to the website: Grapes are sourced from a collection of warm-climate vineyards that range from the Wahluke Slope to Cold Creek Vineyard, and include the namesake Indian Wells Vineyard. The resulting wines are rich, round, and full-bodied.

Well the Indian Wells Riesling was so good. Fruity, hint of sweet to balance out the spicy pasta, but a bit lighter than the Columbia Valley and a smidge drier. I really liked it. Excellent value at $9.99, which is what we paid for it, although the website sells it for $15.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Squeaky Clean Decanters

Don’t you hate it when you have a nice decanter but no matter what it seems to have some sort of film, from the dried wine and/or hard water? Or maybe you’re not all that good about rinsing them out immediately and wine has dried and the “film” is somewhat mildew-esque; not officially mildew, just looks like more than water spots.... What do you do? Well, I’m not a huge fan of those decanter brushes or beads or whatever fad some wine mag is trying to sell me ….and vinegar never works for me. So, I turned to good ole bleach and it works well for me. Here’s what I do to get my decanter squeaky clean: 
  • Take about 1/8c of bleach, swirl it around the bottom for a minute
  • Fill decanter with hot water
  • Let sit for 15-30 minutes
  • Rinse at least 4-5 times
  • When the decanter no longer smells of bleach, rinse once more.
  • Wait until its TOTALLY dry, and use!

 (In case you're wondering, the excess rinsing and drying is to ensure your wine is bleach free!)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Our first "digi-novel"

Over Christmas break Mr. Lush and I read Level 26, a “digi-novel”. What's a digi-novel? Well, in a digi novel you log online every 20-30 pages or so to see a clip/scene that corresponds to the book. (you're given a code at the end of every few chapters to enter) The online scenes aren’t mandatory to understand the book, it just sort of adds something to it. The book itself is about the worst of the worst killer (a level 26 killer), and his sick twisted ways of getting one former FBI agent back to work on the case. (You can see more on the website itself) The book is by the creator of CSI and thus has a little mix of forensic evidence, although not as much as you'd expect basd on the shows. It was good and slightly disturbing, but not the kind of disturbing where you wake up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat. There’s going to be 2 more books-one coming out this year and one coming out next, so it’s evidently done well in sales.

All in all, I liked the book and found the “digi-novel” aspect to be, well, a novel idea. Some of the scenes were good, and some were a bit useless (like going online to read a text message).  It does take away from the reader’s imagination because you’re given an image to adhere to, versus letting your mind create one based soley on the author’s words. But of course, it does add a little something to it as well and helps enhance the overall feel of the book, and gives you a break in reading to see a scene. Overall, I expect there to be more digi-novels in general; it seems like the kind of thing that will catch on - mixing media together - at least for a little while. We’ll see.