Thursday, April 16, 2015

Wine of the Week: Angeline 2013 California Pinot Noir

Wine of the Week: Angeline 2013 California Pinot Noir

We picked up a bottle of this wine in Colorado, whilst Spring Breaking. Angeline Winery is a Russian River Valley that sources grapes from all over California, vilifies them, then blends them to create the wine they are after. For the 2013 California Pinot Noir, each lot is destemmed, fermented in stainless steel tanks, then pressed and racked to 35% new French oak barrels for secondary fermentation and aging. Pretty garnet color; nice basic Pinot with red berry and cherry aromas, backed by a hint of orange citrus; more cherries and berries on the palate; round mouthfeel into a smooth finish; twist-off closure; SRP $10.

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Broken Compass Brewing, Breckenridge, Colorado

This year, during our Spring Break trip to Breckenridge, I got over to Broken Compass Brewing, the most local brewery in town. The exterior will definitely not win awards for beauty, but they've done a nice job with the design inside, featuring old ski lifts as benches and local art on the wall. Open daily at 11:30 AM, it's a bring your own food kind of place, which is probably a good idea due to the strength of the beers and effects of the altitude.

Broken Compass Brewing, Breckenridge, Colorado

With a lengthy beer list, it was hard to choose, but by going with non-matching flights, my brother-in-law and I covered most of what was available. You might love or hate the beer, but we both agreed there was a singularity to what they do, with an underlying common thread that seems to run through most, if not all, of their brews.

Broken Compass Brewing, Breckenridge, Colorado

With board games, big tables and the aforementioned feast-bringing, this is a place I can imagine whiling away an afternoon or two while in town. If you're visiting Breck, make sure to stop by and sample, let me know what you think.

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Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Restaurants in Breckenridge

When we travel, we try to eat at the place we're staying as much as possible, both to eat healthier and also to cut costs. That being said, it's fun to also check out the local dining scene as well. Last week, in Breckenridge, we tried three new to us places that are worth checking out.

Restaurants in Breckenridge Fatty's Pizzeria

After a day of skiing, cooking dinner is not always the first thing on one's mind, though eating probably is. We were jonesing for something easy, when I remembered walking by Fatty's Pizzeria earlier in the week. A quick phone call was all it took, and our take-out pizzas were ready by the time we got to the car and drove over. Tasty sauce and toppings, great crust (just too much of it) - we went with the whole wheat option. Fatty's is locate doff the main drag and appears to be more of a locals hangout than some of the other places in town.

Fatty's Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Restaurants in Breckenridge Dorothy's Homemade Tamales

Technically not in Breckenridge, Dorothy's Homemade Tamales is an unlikely destination in Fairplay, a short drive over the Continental Divide. Drive through the old section of town, hang a right at the end, then wend your way over to the bowling alley, where this restaurant currently resides. This place is so well known it was featured on Food Network: "Behind Dorothy's Homemade Tamales is a 100-year-old recipe, plus 2 days of prep to get the shredded chicken and red chile sauce just right." We ordered one of each tamale to try, which is definitely the way to go. The only one we didn't taste was the mixed vegetable, which wasn't very good anyway, according to Dorothy herself. They keep it on the menu for vegans and other veggie lovers. Lots of variety amongst those we did try and the mix of green or red chiles kept things interesting, especially from a texture standpoint.

Dorothy's Homemade Tamales on Urbanspoon

Restaurants in Breckenridge Quandary Grille

Located in the Village at the base of Peak 9, Quandary Grille is close by after skiing and takes reservations, if you have a big group like we did. A 2-for-1 Happy Hour for food and discounted drinks make this doubly appealing. Mostly typical bar and grill food done well, there are some more adventurous options as well. Decent local craft beer on draft list, though it would be nice if they included all the local options, like Broken Compass just down the road. The burgers and fish tacos were unanimously appreciated; in fact, only the Nachos fell flat (surprisingly). Good location, good, food, good beer, no need to ask for anything more. 

Quandary Grille on Urbanspoon

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Thursday, April 2, 2015

Wine of the Week: Newman's Own Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

Newman's Own Cabernet Sauvignon

Newman's Own is an interesting company - growing out of the late actor Paul Newman's cooking hobby, it's a company that donates 100% of all its post-tax profits and royalties to charity. We've enjoyed this company's other offerings so we decided it was worth checking out this wine as well. At less than $10, it's not much of a flyer, either. I couldn't find much information on this vintage, but according to the Newman's Own wine website, the 2011 has 12% California Petite Sirah blended in to the California Cabernet Sauvignon, and I'm guessing they did something similar in 2013; you can taste a bit of the Petite Sirah's pepperiness in this red blend. The 2011 was fermented in stainless steel and aged in French oak, which could be the case for this wine as well (winemakers have so many tricks and tech treatments nowadays it's hard to actually know if they don't tell you). This is not an overly complex wine, but also isn't overly simple either - the aromas of vanilla, dark cherry, plum, and spice lead into a smoothly sipping wine that shows off elements of dark fruit, black pepper, cedar, and herbal flavors. Definitely a food wine, it's good for drinking on its own but awakens and expands when paired with simple fare, maybe a pizza or pasta dish.

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