rose tea


When I have a rose that starts to pass, I pluck it and steep it with a little tea. A little tea is best, too much and the flower won’t come through. With a little cream, and sugar.

Leaves and stem are just for show. I robbed myself of the rose-hip for the sake of this picture.

dinner for nine


I am trying to remember this meal. My home-picked rabbit simmering on the stove all day—wine, stock, onion, with a little savory and marjoram. We drank a nice little Coteaux du Vendômois rosé, made from Pineau d’Aunis, with a beautiful color, and an amazing floral bouquet, and a steely unfloral taste. Guests arrived between five and six, bearing scallops in cream sauce, and a dried-tomato sauce and chèvre, and a fine loaf of home-baked bread. Also, we had some herbed and oiled garbanzo beans. We finished off a few eccentric ends of bottles of wine. Made a fire in the back-yard, and sat around until dark, when the last guests arrived.

We set in on the back deck. The rabbit, over wild rice, with a pleasant, typical Côtes du Rhône. Then the goat leg, oven-roasted, with small potatoes, green-beans, and a pair of Aglianicos. Forgetting the salad, next was chocolate mousse with coffee cream, in martini glasses, and a claufoutis. Then most of us left, and there was a little fire-sitting, and some whisky.

A remarkably simple meal. I think I say that partly because there was so little running around, so little actual cooking to do once everyone had arrived.

My 28th birthday. Not bad.

good berry

I was out scouting vineyard sites up the side of Flat Mountain the other day and I found a good one. There was a black-raspberry bush with a few ripe berries on it. We ate the berries, and they were among the best I’ve ever had. The flavor lingered for half and hour. This is not something fruit-growers, other than wine-growers, often do: plant their plants in a rain-shadow, on a slope, in such poor soil, unfertilized, unirrigated, in competition with weeds. Under these conditions berries grow slowly, painfully, and develop a complexity and concentration as above that of standard farm-grown berries as open-air tomatoes are above hot-house ones. I have been consistently disappointed in the fruit I’ve been able to get at farmers’ markets lately, I think this disappointment has increased in proportion to my greater habit of foraging, acquired in old age. When was a cultivated berry ever as good as a wild one? And yet, we can do better.

beef heart

beef heart

clafoutis (not yet cooked)


Claw foo tee.

I strongly advise against de-pitting the cherries.

new old computer

gurgles like my stomach. Maybe we’ll get some posts up around here, now.