January 23, 2005

The Wine Collector

How many bottles of Château Mouton-Rothschild can you drink? A fair question, but not one you'd ask most wine collectors, for whom the label is an end in itself. Unlike Joseph Walike, MD. No, for this retired plastic surgeon, wines like Mouton [and Haut Brion and Pichon-Lalande and Heitz Martha's Vineyard and Quilceda Creek] are amassed and stored for the pure pleasure of drinking them.

Joe Walike in the cellar1.jpeg Old bottles of Heitz.jpeg Corks.jpeg

He's built a lovely wine cellar in the basement of his West Seattle waterfront home to house his treasures. Which, I remind you, he does drink. We shared a couple of 1982-vintage California cabs the other evening. The corks went into the overflowing basket. A bottle of wine a night, two or three bottles with friends, it adds up. Joe's kids are still teenagers; I don't think there's going to be much left for them ...

Posted by Ronald Holden at 2:21 PM

January 20, 2005

Julie & Carlos

That's Julie Guerero and Carlos Kainz, proprietors of Dulces Latin Bistro, exemplars of food and wine. Kudos this week from Wine Enthusiast Magazine, which gave Dulces its Award of Ultimate Distinction for its exceptional wine list.

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This latest accolade comes as wine guru Carlos adds another 40-case wine cabinet to the private dining space called, not surprisingly, the Wine Room, bringing storage capacity to something like 1,800 bottles. Meantime, Julie is well into this month's special menu, emphasizing Spanish recipes like the fragrant seafood stew, zarzuela de mariscos that I enjoyed earlier this week accompanied by a glass of hearty red from the up-and-coming Toro region of western Spain.

Posted by Ronald Holden at 4:08 PM

January 18, 2005

Sign language

What's wrong with these pictures?

Doorway.jpg Sign.jpg

Well, for one thing, whoever wrote the sign assumes that dogs can read. Not only that, but also assumes that dogs would know which way North lies. In which case the real problem, seems to me, is that the sign is posted too high up!

Posted by Ronald Holden at 11:47 AM

January 9, 2005

The Perfect French Woman

Just when I was going to post an item about Weight Watchers and our culture's traditional New Year's obsession with weight loss, along comes the embodiment of a sophisticated French woman, Mireille Guiliano, with a better idea.

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It's a book called French Women Don't Get Fat: the Secret of Eating for Pleasure, and its premise is simple: take pleasure from food. Healthy living and healthy eating, not guilt or deprivation: it's about getting the most out of the food you most enjoy. Following her own advice, Mireille relishes her life of indulgence as ceo of Cliquot, Inc., a life that calls for regular consumption of Veuve Clicquot and other fine beverages ... Imagine that! Eating and drinking for pleasure! What a concept!

One of her secrets: an almost purifying tonic from the humble leek. The recipe:

Clean 2 pounds of leeks and rinse well. Cut off the ends of the dark green parts, leaving the white parts and a suggestion of pale green. Put them in a large pot, cover with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 20 to 30 minutes. Pour off the liquid and reserve.

The juice can be drunk (reheated or at room emperature) every two to three hours, one cup at a time.

For meals, have some of the leeks a half-cup at a time. Drizzle with a few drops of extra-virgin olive oil and lemon juice.

Posted by Ronald Holden at 8:31 PM

January 1, 2005

Happy New Year!

Before midnight.jpg Foosh.jpg Needle New Year 05.jpg Afterglow.jpg

Shot with a Nikon Coolpix 2500, on the "Fireworks Show" setting.

Posted by Ronald Holden at 11:27 PM | Comments (1)