Tag Archives: christmas

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all.  Posts have  been light  as life has overtaken blogging but stay tuned there is more to come.  Best wishes to everyone and sincerest hopes for a Happy and Prosperous New Year.

Some poached pear salad with goat cheese from our first course Christmas Eve Dinner.


Filed under The Good Life

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas (or merry whatever holiday you chose to celebrate- Hanukkah, Festivus, Kwanzaa etc.) readers.  I’m off to cook.  Here’s the Christmas Eve Menu.  We were trying to keep it lower key:


First Course: Cheese Plate

  • – American Cream Cheese with homemade Green and Red Pepper Jelly
  • – Polder Gold (aged goat cheese from the Netherlands)
  • – Aged Asagio

Second Course:

 Insalate Di Pompelmo e Avacado (Italian Grapefruit and Avocado salad)

 Wine for first two courses:  2005 Domaine Carneros Methode Champenoise by Taittinger (92WS)

Third Course:

 Tuscan Bean and Farro Soup w/ Cabbage and Winter Squash

 Homemade Ciabatta Bread

 Wine:  1998 Penfold’s Bin 389

 Dessert Course:

 Homemade Assorted Seasonal Treats:

        – decorated cutout Christmas cookies

        – dark chocolate peppermint cookies

        – almond joy cookies

        – Viennese crescent cookies

        – Kate’s fudge

        – homemade salted almond bark


Wine:  Hardy’s Whisker’s Blake Tawny Port NV (RP95)

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Filed under Food, The Good Life, Wine

Christmas 2007 After Action Review

Well the day was truly wonderful.  We certainly are blessed and thankful.  The meal was by and large a success.  Only problem was I messed up the tarte.  Somehow the apples got over caramelized and permeated the whole thing with a bitter burnt taste.  Oh well we had plenty of leftover cookies and the ice cream was phenomenal!  If you are going to follow the recipe I would advise to only caramelize the butter and sugar for 5 minutes not the 10-15 they say in the recipe.  Didn’t like the dessert wine too much either.,  From my notes:

 N.V. Alvear Pedro Ximénez Montilla-Moriles Solera 1927(Spain, Andalucía, Montilla-Moriles)This had a stunning nose: toffee, figs, raisins and nuts. Tons of flavors of caramel, figs with a hint of orange. The finish just went on and on. Unfortunately it was just too cloyingly sweet for me. The first sip gave me the shudders! Its hard to rate. Not my cup of tea, but it is certainly complex and well crafted.

The absolute best wine was the 2005 François Chidaine Montlouis Les Tuffeaux(France, Loire Valley, Touraine, Montlouis).  This was the best non-sparkling white I had this year.  It was terrific! Nose was closed: some lemon and honeysuckle. Very complex on the palate. It seemed to be very sweet initially with honey and floral notes, then it evolved into a long dry finish with lemon, grapefruit and some rock/mineral. Outstanding.  This is from the Chenin Blanc grape, an often overlooked varietal. Gave it 93 points.

Everyone was too full so we never cracked the Icon.  The 1996 Clos du Marquis (France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien) was very good though.  It was decanted for 2 hours. Beautiful nose: cherry, vanilla and oak. Very restrained on the palate. Cherry, red fruit, cedar with hint of smoke. Incredibly smooth but still some tannins left. Overall very elegant and refined but not splashy.  Gave it a 91.

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas,


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Filed under Food, Wine

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all!  Here is our Christmas Day dinner that will be served at stately Fred Manor:

Christmas 2007 Menu


Cheese and Fruit Plate

Col del Sole Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Extra Dry N.V.



Apple and Chestnut Soup

Francois Chidaine Tuffeaux Montlouis 2005



Sedano Di Verona Alla Francese

[French-style Celery Root Salad]

Francois Chidaine Tuffeaux Montlouis 2005




Apple-Sage Sausage and Mushroom Crêpes

1996 Clos du Marquis St. Julien

1998 Ravenswood Icon, Sonoma County



Tarte Tartin, With Homemade Salted Caramel Ice Cream

Alvear Pedro Ximénez Montilla-Moriles Solera 1927

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