Spring In Minnesota

Well it seems that Spring has finally arrived. We’ve had temperatures reach over 60 degrees F every day this week. Everything is greening up and budding. My tulips are blooming, the catnip is up and my rhubarb is growing nicely. I had to mow the lawn last weekend and it looks like I’ll have to do it again soon. In the summer, it grows so fast I sometimes have to mow it twice a week which is a pain because it takes me two and a half hours to do it. I have a three and a half acre piece of land that sits between farm fields and a lake. I love it in the country and don’t ever want to move back to town, but the maintenance on a big yard is time consuming and hard on my back. I guess sometimes we just have to suffer for what we want.
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Tulips and Dandylions

As soon as the rhubarb is ripe I’m going to pick it all, cut it up in small slices and freeze it. I’ve decided that this is the year I’m going to make wine. I’ve thought about it for years now but I always seem to find an excuse not to do it. I may even pick all the catnip and dandelions and make wine out of them. You can make wine out of virtually any fruit or vegetable or weed. I’ve made a new friend on line whose name is Ari, and she makes wine. Check out the WordPress site, “Wine by Ari.” If you type that in a search bar you can make it all one word. She’s making wine and blogging about it and it’s very inspiring to see others doing it. So I’m going for it this year. with the coming warmer temps, it should be ideal wine making weather.
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The Rhubarb patch
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The house and part of my yard (Taken from the top of Shit Mountain–the septic hump.)

Our oldest granddaughter turned 13 in March but today she’s having a pool party at the community center in town to celebrate. We have taken her with us on our annual vacation every year except one, when she had strep. We keep a cabin rented on a lake about five hours North of us and go there every June. The weather is usually beautiful, and the fishing is great. I taught her how to fish when she was three years old and she has loved it since. Last year she learned how to clean sunfish and loved that too. This year I may teach her how to throw a fly line and maybe next winter when we’re bored I’ll teach her how to tie flies. She such an inquisitive child and really wants to know how to do everything. She told me once, “Grandpa, I have dolls, and sometimes I play with them, but mostly I rather be outside fishing or hunting!” She doesn’t fool me though. She likes pretty dresses and is learning to use make up. When it comes time for boys in her life it’s going to be hard for her to find one that can keep up. That’s okay with me.

So that’s the news from North country. Not much to tell, really. I hope this finds whoever reads it well and happy See you soon!.

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Starling Castle Sweet Red Wine

Starling Castle Sweet German Red WineThe Average Guy Wine Review is back!

I just finished the last glass of Starling Castle Sweet Red wine I bought the other day. The bottle is kind of tacky looking with it’s gold and white printing right on the glass. The back label does not list the grapes used to make it except to say they are German. It’s a German wine, go figure. I found virtually no information on line about it either.
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Nice color!

A medium red color and an almost dry taste. A little bite at the back of the tongue from acidity which was okay. I don’t like really sugary sweet wines. Liquid candy is not appealing. The reviews I read said something about cherries and some other fruit I can’t recall. The fruit flavor was good, whatever it was. It went well with pork and vegetables, fish and vegetables and pizza. I paid $9 dollars on sale and I’m not sure I would pay regular price. It was okay, but not that great. Next time I’ll rant about wine reviews in general. Stay tuned!

And now, for something completely different…

wine bottle
“And now, for something completely different…” as they used to say on Monty Python’s Flying Circus. I’m doing a wine review! Never read that here before, have you? Well I like to drink wine, and smoke pipes and cigars. All completely hedonistic pursuits I assure you, but if done in moderation, well, my opinion is that they won’t harm me. I can go for weeks without having a smoke or a drink. Sometimes, months. I do these things purely because I like too and because occasionally I can afford them.

So with that, I bought a bottle of wine the other day that was half price. The store was making room for new wines and clearing out some others. So I paid $ 6 dollars for this one. That, I can afford. The wine is Lost Angel, Moscat Cannelli, 2007. The Moscat Canelli grape originated near the village of Canelli in the Piedmont region of Italy. The grapes for this particular wine were grown by the Eos Estate Winery in Paso Robles, California. It is a white wine which I drank with an anonymous chicken and pasta something or other that I made. I also had some with grilled cheese sandwiches. I read a review of this wine on a, believe it or not, wine review website! There are actually people out there who know how to do this! I’ll give you the link here (if you’re interested in a real wine review.)

I am not one who likes dry wines. Feeling like my face is being sucked back inside my head from lack of moisture is not attractive. So I go for the sweeter ones, but not too sweet. I don’t want to feel like I’m drinking candy with alcohol in it either. This Lost Angel fit very nicely where my tastes lie. It went well with the food I ate and also drank well alone. It has an abundance of fruit flavors which my palette is not refined enough to describe. Not only am I not, as I have said, a professional drinker (thank you Jaysus!) I am also not a professional reviewer of, well, anything. It’s easy enough to know when you like something, but to describe it in terms others can understand is a talent I do not possess. So why am I reviewing a wine? Because I can! Click on the link I provided for a real review of this wine.

Mouth feel, is a term used to describe how your mouth feels when drinking a wine and right after you swallow it. The mouth feel on the Moscat was fresh and clean with just the tiniest amount of acidity. So I liked it. Simple. If you have visited “The Window” in the past you may have read a post about the five Buddhist precepts that I have tried (and failed from time to time) to live by. One of them is “To avoid intoxicating substances.” For my own purposes I have modified this one to read: “To avoid becoming intoxicated.” How does that work, you ask? Simple. They are not “The Ten Commandments.” There is no vengeful God waiting to slap me around for breaking one. Or modifying one, either. So having a glass of wine once in a while is guilt free. Isn’t that great? Anyway, this was a good white wine and so I thought I’d tell you about it. My apologies to my non-drinking friends.