Anyone else simply had it with the arctic blast we are experiencing right now here in good old Northeast Ohio? I pretty much have. I love the snow, don’t get me wrong. The Winey Family are all big ski fans. But it’s not the snow I am having issues with. It’s the negative temperatures. Which match my attitude when I wake up in the morning and see the current temp as, oh, -18. Without the wind chill. Doesn’t help that both The Winey Children are living in climates that allow them to be outdoors without danger of their skin freezing. Two weekends ago, The Winey Daughter announced over the phone that she was headed outside to do some reading. You could have cut the bitterness in the air with a knife on our end of the line. Then The Winey Son announced that he missed our call because he was on the golf course. The Winey Hubby’s shoulders drooped a bit and I could see him just steel his reserve not to make a nasty comment, as he had just come in from shoveling a path for The Winey Dogs to follow when nature called. (The snow is officially above their heads and has been for about 3 weeks now.)
But being the resourceful Northeast Ohioans that we are, The Winey Hubby and I have devised ways to get through the trying winter weather. He spends a lot of time gazing longingly at golf tournaments on television. He does that in the nice weather too, but this time of year there is that extra little wistfulness about it all.
I go swimming at a local rec center, because swimming always puts me in mind of sunny, warm weather. Reality hits me when I head into the locker room after my swim and don layers of fleece and boots and hats and gloves…but for the 45 minutes or so that I am in that pool, it’s another season altogether.
And being The Winey Mom that I am, I have found myself also turning to my wine selections to bring some sunshine into my life. Although our bodies are crying out for the comfort of warm, bubbly stews and soups, I find that I can bring a little bit of warm weather to the table by uncorking a sunny white wine.
I’m going to give you two options for pouring a little warmth into your wine glasses. Both are available locally and are under $10 a bottle, so you can still afford windshield wiper fluid and sidewalk salt after buying them.
The first sunshiny wine we’re going to talk about is Grace Lane Riesling (2012, 11.5%, Washington State). I found it at Heinen’s for $8.99. Think of this one as springtime in your mouth. You’ll smell some lovely aromas of apple blossoms and cinnamon and peaches. It tastes of apples and pears and honeysuckle and finishes off with apple cider and apple cider spices. It feels round and silky while you sip it. This isn’t a totally sweet Riesling, I’d call it medium dry, so it will make sweet and dry wine lovers happy. I would caution you that over the Christmas holidays, my Winey Sister-in-law and I discovered that this wine disappears very quickly. I’m going to leave it at that, but suffice to say you may want to buy more than one bottle.
The next wine on our list is Trapiche Pinot Grigio ((2012, 13%, Argentina). You can find this wine all over Northeast Ohio and it’s a bargain every time. I actually saw it on special once for $10 for a 1.5 litre bottle. If the Grace Lane was springtime, this wine is all summer. It starts out with scents of peach and minerals. You’ll taste some bubbly minerals – not soda fizzy minerals, but lively tart little bubbles. There were flavors of white peach and grapefruit. It finished tart and fresh. Like a sea breeze on a hot summer day. This is a wonderful light white wine option. It’s not sweet, but it’s got all those lovely flavors that keep it from being achingly bone dry.
I am hoping that reading about these two wines gave you a bit of a vacation from our arctic blasting polar vortex. As I said earlier, I do love the snow, but when Mother Nature (or Queen Elsa from Frozen) decides to give us her all, it can get old real fast. So when cozying up in blankets in front of the fire just isn’t doing it for you anymore, try sipping some warm weather. And hang in there. Spring is less than one month away.