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Strong Coffee to Red Wine Posts

Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda

I am expanding the blog to include a Travel section. Over the years I have traveled to some pretty cool places.  These trips were quite impactful, and I continue to be asked about them. So I thought that I might do a few posts about some of my previous trips.  At the moment I will be featuring past excursions that include my time in Rwanda, Myanmar, Kenya, and Manitoba.  They won’t all be this exotic for sure, but let’s get this going with our first day of gorilla treks. Walking with the Greatest of Apes Ever since I saw my first…

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Salad for Lunch – Tarragon Lentil Salad

When we make Indian food, there is always a “dal,” a super thick lentil soup or side dish. As a result, I keep lentils in my pantry pretty much all the time. Rummaging through the pantry, I found my lentils way in the back and decided that it was time to make a healthy lentil salad for lunch. Tarragon Lentil Salad There will be no portion quantities in this recipe because it depends greatly on how much you are making and for how many people. Like most salads, there is a base ingredient and then a little of this and…

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Breakfast All Day at Millers All Day

I have always thought that a restaurant that serves breakfast all day would be a goldmine. Yes, I know that IHOP, Denny’s and the like serve breakfast all day. But I am thinking a restaurant with a bar and a vibe that says I want to hang out here versus a diner. One that acknowledges that the three most important meals of the day are breakfast, lunch and happy hour. I know, I know that sound like brunch. It is, and that is just what I dreamed. A place where I can get brunch any day of the week. Even at…

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Russian River Valley and Hanna Wines

The Russian River Valley is a designated AVA* that resides within the larger Northern Sonoma AVA. AVAs located with a larger AVA share the characteristics of that AVA but also have a more unique set of attributes that further define that specific smaller portion of the region. It could be the soil type, the weather patterns or any number of things. The AVA that appears on the bottle is always the one that represents where the vineyards are precisely located. As such, the smaller AVA will always trump the larger if the vines all reside within the smaller (or sub)…

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Oysters Casino to Start

I have an Oysters Casino appetizer to share with you today that is so delicious. I got the idea when I was up in Provincetown eating Clams Casino. With fresh and delicious oysters harvested from our waters, it only makes sense to use them instead of clams. So two weeks ago, I had a small dinner party, and this was the second course. But before we get to that, I want to explain where I have been for the past month. The Confluence of Circumstance Thank you for your patience as I dealt with the snowball that was my life…

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Dining Out: Old School Italian

Perhaps it is my age, or maybe it is my history. But I love dining at traditional, old-school Italian restaurants where the recipes are passed down through the generations. These restaurants are focused on quality of food, not cutting edge presentations, glitz or glamour; just the food. I remember the first time I went to one of these restaurants. I was sixteen, and my grandmother took me there for dinner after I passed my driver’s test and got my license. That was at Ann & Tony’s in West Jefferson, Ohio. Dining out was a big deal as a kid in my…

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Salads for Lunch: Buddha Bowl

Last week when in Provincetown, we stopped for a quick dinner at The Canteen. A quick-casual walkup counter restaurant with a few tables inside and a bunch more outside overlooking the beach behind the restaurant. The restaurant offers hot and cold sandwiches, soups, appetizers, and salads. One of the favorites for many is the crispy Brussel sprouts which Gary got as a side dish. His main entree was a Buddha Bowl. I thought a Buddha Bowl was just something on this menu. Apparently, I have been living under a rock because Buddha Bowls are everywhere and vary greatly. If you are also…

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Recharge and Refresh on The Cape – Part 1

We all need time to recharge and refresh our batteries. As one who works for myself and out of my home, work is always just a few steps away screaming, “your clients are waiting” or “your readers are waiting.” It is a constant that is hard to ignore. Thus I usually end up working every day at least a little bit, and that is ok. I love what I do so work only feels like work when I am behind schedule. Did You Miss Me? I can’t believe it has been two weeks since my last post. Today, it feels like…

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Mexican Street Corn es Muy Delicioso

Several weeks back I read this recipe on Pineapple House Rules, a Texas-based “mom blog” I follow because of Lilly’s recipes. This particular recipe made me think about the street vendors in the Hispanic neighborhood in Chicago where we used to live. They served the corn “on the cob” with the husk still attached as the handle, slathered in mayonnaise, spices, and cheese with a wedge of lime. Since my mayonnaise usage is selective, the idea of slathering it on fresh sweet corn seemed over the top and too sweet. All I could think was, why would they do that. Now decades later…

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Amazing Week! * Beer * And One More Thing

How do you describe a week that by Sunday, you do not get out of bed until 10:00 am, you take four naps throughout the day and evening and then go to bed and fall right to sleep? I only have one word – Amazing! Amazing Bride Last week was a super crazy week in my photography business. I had a shoot on Tuesday evening, Wednesday evening, all day Thursday in Hilton Head (2 1/2 hours south of Charleston) and all day on Saturday. There are a few highlights that I want to share so please indulge me for just…

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Readers Questions & Favorite Things

Today I thought I would share with you some of the questions I have gotten from readers that pertain to wine and the consumption of alcohol. I am thrilled that folks will reach out and I figured that if one person asks a question, many others may be curious as well. But before I start, I have to give a shout out to one of my readers. On Monday when the post about Kelly Fleming Wines went live, I received this picture. That is a bottle of Kelly Fleming 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon that he received as a birthday present from a friend who…

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Kelly Fleming Wines * Our Tasting Experience

This post about Kelly Fleming Wines is a collaboration with my friend and fellow blogger Amber Burke of www.winetraveleats.com. She is based in Napa and well connected. Our friendship was online based for months before we actually met, but once we did at the Wine Writers Education Conference (WWET), we quickly went from online friends to family. Gary and I could not have had the magical experiences that we did without her, and we are forever grateful. Now we talk all the time, so it only made sense to share this experience jointly. Amber Comments: One of the things that…

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Peaches Make A Delectable Compote

I have a love/hate relationship with peaches. I L.O.V.E. fresh peaches. They are one of the summer’s little treasures that you have to search out. Those picked too early never get the sweetness that you desire, and those picked too late, well read on because there is a problem. Peaches ripen in a nano-second and then quickly begin to lose freshness, flavor, and juiciness. If all of your peaches hit peak ripeness on the same day, you have to devour the entire basket within 24 hours. Or you run the risk of taking a single bite and then tossing in the trash because it…

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Monday Coffee * New Brand & a Mea Culpa

Monday, Monday, bah, dah, bah, da da da… So did you sing along as you read? The second portion of that lyric is the depth of my vocabulary until about 2:30 pm each and every Monday. It is not that my Sundays are all that wild. I merely have a mental block regarding Mondays. Perhaps if I was a “morning person” instead of a “night owl.” it might be different, but I will never know. Coffee Roasters of Charleston About a week ago, Gary came home from work and said, “Hey, a co-worker’s husband roasts coffee, and she wants to know…

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