Cocktails, Weekend Update

Weekend Update: Coltivare and Salentein Malbec

Thursday morning was rainy, but it cleared up enough that night for a bike ride around Woodland Heights after happy hour at Karbach Brewery with my new coworkers.  Woodland Heights is such a dream land.  I’ve love to own a home there to raise a family one day!  I’m always a sucker for a tree canopy.

Woodland Heights

Friday was beautiful in Houston.  Unfortunately, I was so tired after such a busy week that I had only enough energy to have a glass of wine before hitting the hay early.

Downtown

I picked up a bottle of this 2015 Salentein Malbec.  I had this wine awhile back on a date and liked it so much I snapped a photo of the label.  Since I’m on a Malbec kick, I was checking out the selection and was happy to see this wine stocked!  It was as good as I remember.

Salentein Malbec

In tasting, I noticed cherry and spice.  I’m not sure if I prefer this wine or the Trivento Malbec I tried last week, but I think I’m leaning toward the Trivento; it seemed a bit less acidic, and I like fruitier wines. Both are very good!

Saturday night I went to Coltivare, one of my (now) favorite restaurants, for a second date.  It was very busy, so we hung out in the garden area for cocktails while we waited for a table.  I had the Cash Only which was good but mainly ice.  Think adult snow cone.  Once we were seated I had an excellent red wine.  Unfortunately, I didn’t take note of what it was! For the meal, we tried the Focaccia with Olive Oil, Texas Corn on the Cob, Wood Grilled Chicken with Grapes, Ricotta Gnocchi and famous Black Pepper Spaghetti.  Everything was incredible.  The corn had a sauce that was incredible and the Wood Grilled Chicken had a distinct flavor that I haven’t been able to put out of my mind.  The Black Pepper Spaghetti lived up to the hype and was perfect in its simplicity.  I think this was the best meal I’ve had at Coltivare, and I can’t wait to go back again!

I’m planning on getting back on track with posting this week.  I made an incredible cheesecake today for Tuesday’s post, and I whipped up some Habanero Simple Syrup for Thursday’s cocktail post.

 

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Weekend Update

Dolce Neve Gelato and Trivento Amado Sur Malbec

I don’t have much to report from this weekend.  It was a really low-key weekend with a busy week ahead in mind – a couple dates and some mixology for an upcoming post!  That said, I did manage to have a few highlights!

Friday night I rested.  It was my first week in the new job, and though the hours are not long, there is a lot to learn.  I was exhausted Friday night and stayed in to rest.

Saturday morning I ran around completing my usual errands and did some yoga (Saturday yoga for the win!). I decided to treat myself to gelato at Dolce Neve Gelato on Saturday afternoon.  I tried to Fromage Blanc & Apricot and Crema Dolce Neve (lemon) flavors.  I loved the Fromage Blanc & Apricot, but I was disappointed the Mascarpone & Fig and a couple other flavors I wanted to try were not available.  Next time!

Dolce Neve Gelato

Saturday night I tried out a new Malbec, Trivento Amado Sur.  Typically, I grab a bottle of Alamos when I’m craving Malbec, but I decided to change it up.  I really like the Trivento!  I would recommend.  It’s not pricey; I think it was around $12-13.  I’m having a bit as I type, in fact.

Trivento Amado Sur Malbec

Sunday morning I went for a run and then to church.  It was a fantastic sermon!  Then, I went for a manicure (clearly much-needed from the above gelato photo!) and spent the rest of the day relaxing.  I spent some time reading James Joyce’s Ulysses on my patio.  It was a very zen afternoon!  I’m hoping to go for a bike ride here in a little bit and then walk my baby dog, Laci.  The Crepe Myrtles are in full bloom around The Heights and just beautiful!

Crepe Myrtles

Hope you have a fantastic week!

Cocktails

My Favorite Wines

Wine on the Balcony

I promise Thursday isn’t going to become a day devoted to wine reviews.  I have two fun cocktail posts (one will be a mixology and the other will be a throwdown – any guesses?) in the works — I just need to do a little more research (okay, taste testing).  I’ve been a little preoccupied because today I started a new job!  It was a great first day and very exciting!  That said, these cocktails posts I have in the works will be worth the wait.

Aside from volunteering in the HLSR Champion Wine Garden during rodeo season, I drink a lot of wine.  I think this makes me an expert.  Maybe you don’t, but um humor me and just go with it.

Chardonnay:

  • Rombauer  – Buttery.  Very buttery.  A taste all its own, and I love it.  I tried this wine for the first time in the HLSR Wine Garden last season with my mom, and we both immediately fell in love.  She surprised me with a bottle for us to share after I took her to brunch on Mother’s Day.  It was so sweet!
  • Kendall Jackson Vintner’s Reserve  – Similar to Rombauer but lighter on the butter.

Pinot Gris:  King Estate – Wonderful for hot days.  I purchased this bottle many times last summer.  An easy, satisfying pick.

Rosé :  Whispering Angel – As I’ve mentioned before, this is my favorite.  From the color to the aroma to the taste, it can’t be beat.  Rosé all day, indeed.

Pinot Noir:

  • Meiomi –  If you go to a house party, odd’s are good someone will bring a bottle of this.  I’ve done this myself!  A great standard Pinot Noir.  Incredible website, by the way.
  • Francis Ford Coppola Director’s Cut –  Fruity and delightful.

Malbec:  Alamos Malbec – Very inexpensive.  Great quality for the price.

Zinfandel:  The Prisoner – A wine with a cult following.  It took me ages to try this one because it sold out the evening of a day’s morning delivery!  It was worth the wait.  I’ve given this as a Christmas gift.  I’m really wishing someone would give this to me as a gift right about now!

Cabernet Sauvignon:

  • Caymus – Pricey, but a treat.  A man once picked up a bottle of this for me, without knowing how much I love it.  Needless to say, I was impressed!
  • B.R. Cohn –  I’ve purchased a bottle of this more times that I can count.  A good, inexpensive standard.
  • Francis Coppola Claret –  Twice recently (wine-and-a-chat at my friend’s house and Leadership Academy End-of-Year Happy Hour last weekend) this bottle has been offered at events.  I liked it so much after the first run-in, I picked up a bottle to add to my stash.

Bubbly:  Veuve Clicquot – Do I even need to write anything here?  Perfect for celebrations.  I buy a bottle every New Year’s Eve to share with my closest friends at whatever NYE party I end up at.  Like buttah.

I also recommend checking out Sancerre.  I think this varietal is often lost in the shuffle, but I greatly enjoyed trying different bottles last summer.  Flora Springs’s Trilogy is a wonderful red blend I picked up at The Estate in Napa last summer as a birthday gift to myself.  I shared it with a friend to complement a homemade spaghetti and meatballs dinner, and it was perfect!

I’d love to hear what some of your favorites are!