AMAZING PEACE by Maya Angelou
In our joy, we think we hear a whisper.
At first it is too soft. Then only half heard.
We listen carefully as it gathers strength.
We hear a sweetness.
The word is Peace.
It is loud now.
Louder than the explosion of bombs.
We tremble at the sound.
We are thrilled by its presence.
It is what we have hungered for.
Not just the absence of war. But true Peace.
A harmony of spirit, and comfort of courtesies.
Security for our beloveds and their beloveds.
We, Angels and Mortals, Believers and Nonbelievers,
Look heavenward and speak the word aloud.
Peace. We look at each other, then into ourselves,
And we say without shyness or apology or hesitation:
Peace, My Brother.
Peace, My Sister.
Peace, My Soul.
Red Blend, Salice Salentino Riserva, Cantele, Italy 2007
85% Negroamoro, 15% Malvasia Nera
On the nose, the wine is fresh and clean, with notes of earth and red fruit balanced by some peppery tones. On the palate, a medley of earthy and savory flavors set against meaty ripe wild berry and red fruit.
The arrival of a Sirocco (a Mediterranean wind that comes from the Sahara and reaches hurricane speeds in North Africa and Southern Europe.) in late September was a major cause for alarm for wine maker Gianni Cantele. He feared the hot winds would cause vines to go into hydric shock and cause them to drop their fruit.
But thankfully that was not the case and the resulting wine is the best Salice Salentino his family winery has ever produced.
Recommended Granada pairing: Cheese plate, Cubano, Anything with MEAT
You order a bottle of wine at a restaurant. The wine stewart opens your bottle and promptly presents you with the cork. What should you do with it? At Granada Bistro, I’ve seen all sorts of things; people put it in their pocket, they roll it around in their fingers, or most often, they smell it, thinking this will tell them whether the bottle is ‘corked’ or not. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. (In saying that, I must admit that there was a time when I was guilty of cork smelling myself, just because I had no idea what to do with it.. Ah, the shame.) The best thing to do, however, is to simply confirm that the stamp on the cork matches the winery on the bottle, and then say “thank you.” Don’t smell it or contemplate the wine saturation. Resist the temptation.
The ritual of the cork presentation at restaurants began due to fraud and humidity. When paper labels made their way onto bottling starting in the 1800s, humid European wine cellars would eventually decimate their readability and/or their ability to stay attached to the bottle. How could a wine producer make sure their customers trusted what they were drinking if the label was missing? This led to wineries stamping their name and logo on the cork. Restauranteurs would, in turn, present the cork at the table to confirm the wine’s origin. If the cork was removed in the kitchen and subsequently presented at the table, it left plenty of room for suspicion. After all, how would customers know if that particular cork actually came from the bottle they ordered?
Fraud also played its part. Phylloxera annihilated the European wine market in the late 1800s, and since the top wines were unavailable, many wine merchants and restauranteurs began putting plonk wine into bottles from the top producers. Consumers began to demand proof of authenticity and the cork presentation was one of their safeguards.
Long story short. Next time you are given a cork. Check to make sure it matches the label and let the fun of drinking it begin.
, cork presentation
, wine etiquette