Saturday, January 31, 2009

January 20, 2009

The Three Faces of Snow

This year
has brought
us the most
snow we've
ever seen in
Seattle –
even the
this much.

First, there's the "Fun" face of snow – making snowmen, sledding, throwing snowballs . . .

Then there's the "Artistic" face of snow – the trees look splendid with their snow jackets on . . .

But then there's the "God, I Hate This" face of snow – scraping snow off of your windshield, trying to navigate the streets . . .

Friday, January 30, 2009

Holiday in Victoria

On the Saturday after Christmas, we decided to brave the snow and head for a holiday in Victoria with our friends Diane and Mary. The weather cooperated (by not getting worse) and we arrived after our ferry ride to find three times as much snow in Victoria as we had left behind in Seattle.

We took along some wine for a special wine tasting, looking forward to other wine tastings as well as some superb food.
In this first photo you can see the glasses arranged for the tasting, each with a colored sticker matching one of the four bottles in the tasting. The point of the tasting was to rate quality vs price, so there was a wide range in price – from $3.50 to $25 in one case, from $8 to $40 in another.
The testing hypothesis was that non-experts would pick exactly backwards – our results were mixed – I probably did the poorest, Clara slightly better, Diane and Mary better still (but they've had a wine tasting class – right!) In three nights we had tastings of Malbec, Zinfandel and Petit Sirah, with the Petit Sirah being everyone's choice as best varietal that we tasted!

One afternoon we went over to a cidery – a place that only makes cider, hard of course, but in an amazing variety of flavors and textures, ranging all the way from an ultra-dry aperitif to a
lush dessert.

Another fun aspect of our visit was the wildlife viewing, watching the birds come to their feeding stations. But the pictures I got were of the squirrels pirating the bird's feed – at both of the stations.

Of course, the ultimate highlight of our visit was Diane's "Baltimore Dinner" – an elegant presentation featuring lobster salad and crab-stuffed shrimp. We were so busy enjoying this luscious feast that we forgot to get any pictures!!