Saturday, February 21, 2015

An Exercise in Resolve, Month 2

Was pleased to have achieved my goal of exercising outside every day, rain or shine, every day but one in January! For me that means walking a distance of from at least 0.6 miles on my worst days (i.e., just up to the mailbox and back) to as much as 3.25 miles on my best day, and generally with some sort of a load that might include a walking stick, messenger bag, and/or backpack and has thus far weighed up to 23.5 pounds total. February has, unfortunately, been a very stressful month and everything has been much more of a struggle. For the most part, however, I have largely managed to match the frequency if not the intensity of my walks. 

February 1 (Sunday): Walked 2.5 miles but, as my hips were hurting and I wanted a break for them, left the backpack behind and carried only about 8 pounds. Diane carried her daypack but was unhappy with how it felt. 
February 2 (Monday): Walked 2.5 miles with full load of c. 22 pounds. Diane switched over to a full-sized pack and was pleased with how it felt. 
February 3 (Tuesday): Pretty cold and wet and pushed off the walk until fairly late and then just knocked out a minimum walk of 0.6 miles to mailbox with c. 6.5 pounds. 
February 4 (Wednesday): Cool and gloomy but good weather for walking and got in a 2.5-mile walk with about 22 pounds. 
February 5 (Thursday): Walked our regular 2.5-mile route with about 22 pounds. 
February 6 (Friday): Were on the road, did not get home until after dark, and did not get our walk in! (But did get some incidental walking in the course of our errands.) 
February 7 (Saturday): Walked up to mailbox, 0.6 miles, with about 6.5 pounds. 
February 8 (Sunday): Walked c. 1.5 miles, about a third of it through woods and over rough ground, with about 8 pounds of weight. 
February 9 (Monday): Walked 1.8 miles with about 8 pounds of weight. Warm and sunny! 
February 10 (Tuesday): Another beautiful day! Walked 0.6 miles with about 6.5 pounds. 
February 11 (Wednesday): Walked 0.6 miles with c. 6.5 pounds. 
February 12 (Thursday): Walked 1.8 miles with c. 7 pounds. 
February 13 (Friday): Walked 1.2 miles with c. 22 pounds. 
February 14 (Saturday): Walked 0.6 miles with c. 6.5 pounds. 
February 15 (Sunday): Walked at least 1.2 miles with at least c. 8 pounds. 
February 16 (Monday): 
February 17 (Tuesday): 
February 18 (Wednesday): 
February 19 (Thursday): Walked 2.5 miles with c. 9 pounds. 
February 20 (Friday): No walk. 
February 21 (Saturday): Walked 0.6 miles with c. 6 pounds. 

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Wine Tasting: Oak Grove Vineyard Zinfandel 2010 Reserve

As far as I am concerned, there is no variety of wine that is generally better suited to pair with a steak than a red zinfandel, and the Oak Grove Vineyard Zinfandel 2010 Reserve is a very nice exemplar of the type. This pleasing, medium-bodied vintage has a velvety texture, rich color, an almost gummy viscosity, aromas and flavors that distinctly feature fresh plum, and hints of pepper. 

"Our winemaking staff takes pride in searching out the finest grapes from California's cool coastal regions," Oak Grove says. "Anything off the grill, from sausage to fish, will make this wine shine." 

We enjoyed a bottle of this red zinfandel as an ideal accompaniment to a dinner of marinated sirloin and rice followed by a nice piece of blue cheese (and I am looking forward to trying it again with a ribeye, which I think it would complement nicely). 

Monday, February 2, 2015

Wine Tasting: Barón de Barbón Cosecha 2010

As its name implies, the Barón de Barbón Cosecha 2010 is nicely dry and somewhat tart medium-bodied Spanish red wine vinted from 100% Tempranillo grapes. It has an aroma suggestive of berries and vanilla, dark plum coloration, a pleasing viscosity, and a 13.5% alcohol content. 

This wine from the Rioja region of Spain is well suited as an accompaniment to food, whether appetizers or a main meal, and seems to be most palatable a few degrees below room temperature and after being allowed to breath a little while, which helps to broaden its flavor palate. 

We enjoyed this vintage initially with beef bulgogi and rice and then had a second glass with sweet chocolate. It paired quite nicely with the former item, and I think it would be perfect with a steak or any other savory meat dish, but was less satisfying when forced into a desert role.