Archive for the ‘Wine’ Category


Our “Open That Bottle Night” didn’t quite go according to how I had planned it.  Originally, I had wanted to pair the perfect meal to go along with the bottle that Jay and I had chosen to open.  I had already gone out and purchased all of the necessary ingredients to make Bistecca Fiorentina (grilled, thick Porterhouse steak), roasted potatoes, a salad of fresh arugula and parmigiano, and molten chocolate souffles.  Jay and I were really excited about sharing a perfect, romantic evening over great food, and amazing wine!  However, as so often happens in life, other things came between me and my plan.

Earlier in the day, we attended a party to celebrate the 1st birthday of our friends’ son. We were originally told that just cake, ice cream, and coffee would be served.  Upon arriving, however, we quickly discovered this was not the case.  There was a table completely filled with food (including some yummy Thai and Philippino dishes), not to mention 3 different cakes!  We didn’t want to be rude, and sampled a little bit of just about everything.  We were especially excited about all of the yummy international dishes.  Needless to say, by the time we left the party, the thought of a big dinner was far from our minds.

Even though our initial plan was obviously no longer going to happen, we didn’t want to just cancel our “Open That Bottle Night.”  We still really wanted to drink the special bottle of wine that we had chosen.  So, we opted for Plan B.  On the way home, we stopped at the supermarket and picked up some cheese, salami, and bread.  Instead of dinner, we enjoyed our wine with a few simple appetizers and each other’s company.  While the wine would have been amazing with the orginal meal that I had planned, it was equally as wonderful with just snacks and good conversation.  It was just another reminder for me that things don’t have to be “perfect,” to be perfect.

I know what you’re wondering…”Which wine did you drink?!!!”  Without further ado, our selection was…..


2004  Lucente – Luce della Vite, Toscana, Italia – 50% Merlot, 35% Sangiovese, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon

We chose this wine for several reasons.  First, Jay and I have wonderful memories of meeting the winemaker, Lamberto Frescobaldi, this past November.  He sat at our table at a wine dinner that we attended, and even signed several bottles of wine from his collection for us.  He and his family also own the famous Marchesi de Frescobaldi, which has been producing wine for over 700 years!   Second, we simply LOVE Tuscan wines!  Who am I kidding…there aren’t many wines that we don’t love!  However, both Jay and I have a soft spot for for red wines from the region of Toscana.  Chianti Classico, Brunello di Montalcino, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano…we love them all!  Third, Lucente is a wine that is available for purchase in the United States.  I wanted to share a wine with all of you wonderful readers that you could also easily try for yourselves without having to make a trip to Italy (although, I think that you should do that, as well).   Finally, we have a second bottle of Luncente that we can continue to hold onto for another couple of years and see how it changes.

Jay and I with Lamberto Frescobaldi

Lamberto Frescobaldi, Me, and Jay

The origin of Lucente has an interesting story.  In 1995, the Frescobaldi family joined forces with Robert Mondavi to make “world-class Italian wines.”  These two wine-making giants jointly purchased land, each family with a 50% stake in the company.  Their first wine, Luce, was released in 1997, followed by Lucente in 1998.   However, in 2004, the giant American wine corporation, Constellation, took over control of Mondavi.  Lamberto Frescobaldi did not want to be part of such a large corporation, so he purchased Mondavi’s share of the Luce company.    He is now completely in control of viticulture and oenology for both Luce wines, as well as Marchesi de Frescobaldi.

So, what did the rest of you drink for “Open That Bottle Night?”  I want to hear about what you drank, as well as the stories from your evening.  So, leave a comment and let me know! 🙂


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When I first started drinking wine, the thought of purchasing it, but not drinking it right away was not one that ever crossed my mind.  If I bought it, I drank it within a few weeks…a few months, tops!  Of course, at that time in my life, the thought of me spending over $10 for a bottle was also pretty much insane.  Boy, have I come a long way!  Now,  I intentionally buy “keeper” bottles.  They are generally wines that need a few more years to mature, and are usually much more expensive than what I would pay for wine to drink on a daily basis.  These are wines that I always say that I’ll drink on a “special occasion.”  However, when a special occasion arrives, I often find myself wanting to drink something else instead, and continue to hold onto those other precious bottles.  I always think, “These wines might be good now, but just think how much better they will be in a few more years!”  So, they stay on the the rack until the next special occasion, upon which I usually, yet again, store them until another time.

Well, this past week, I learned about an annual event called, “Open That Bottle Night,” which is now in its 10th year.  The purpose of this evening is to give me, and others like me, the perfect excuse to open up one of those special bottles that we’ve been hoarding away.  The vintage doesn’t matter, nor does the type of wine or the price.   The whole point is to drink something that will be memorable.  This could be a bottle that you received for a wedding or graduation, one that you purchased on a special vacation, or even one that you haven’t really been storing, but have just always wanted to try.  This year, individuals and restaurants around the globe will be hosting “Open That Bottle Night” parties on Saturday, February 27th.   You, too, can celebrate the evening by simply opening up your own special bottle, either with a group of people, or simply with a spouse or good friend.  Eat some great food along with it, laugh, take pictures, and have fun! 

On Sunday, March 1st, I’ll be posting photos and a story about my own “Open That Bottle Night.”  I’d love to hear about your experiences, too.  Leave a comment and tell me about the wine that you chose, the story behind it, and the people that you shared it with.  You can also send your story and photos to  OTBN@OpenThatBottleNight.com to have it featured on the website.


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