Loralyn Mears, PhD
WINE DOWN AND CHILL: IN COTTAGE COUNTRY
This article was originally published on August 16, 2019 at https://gritdaily.com/wine-down-and-chill-cottage-country/
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If you’re ready to wine down and chill, then you’ve come to the right place. Return here each Friday to find a food & wine column that’s fun to read and suggests terrific wine-movie pairings that go with the theme. You never know what’s next for our “Wine Down for the Weekend” column. Read on for an easy-to-prepare-at-home no-need-for-a-recipe fabulous dinner paired with an affordable wine and a viewing suggestion. We’re here to help you sit back, wine down and chill.
SIPPING BY THE LAKE
Growing up in the wilds of Canada teaches you the value of fresh air, clean lakes (no sharks!) and the magical smell of Christmas tree pines. All. Year. Long. Leaving the country reminds you why you need to go back once in a while. So, this week, I’m sipping my wine lakeside, chilling with my family and some besties.
By the time that you read this, I will be deep in the midst of a wine down and chill session. Think of me laughing, lounging, playing games and having fun with my peeps. The tranquility of the lake, laughing loons, twinkling stars, Northern lights … and the odd outburst any time that one of us has to morph into a mosquito ninja to swat at an evil huntress out for blood.
THE CALL OF THE LOON
Today’s selection calls for something smooth and chill. Something to emulate the experience of sipping lakeside. Teal Lake Chardonnay is a South Eastern Australian little gem that has soothing summer notes of peach and melon with just enough citrus to make your palette feel clean. Bargain-priced at $12/bottle, this is one to add to your regular rotation. The label features a loon-like bird on it which adds to the fit for today. Bottled by Royal Wine Corp., it’s worth trying to find. Add some ice and just like that, you’re ready to wine down and chill.
ON TOP OF SPAGHETTI …
We all know the song about a meatball rolling away. No doubt you sang it as a child. It’s a classic. And there is just something special about spaghetti and meatballs, summer camp and food fights that go together better than just about any other combo. But that’s not what we’re going to eat. Sure, we can assemble the meal quickly, and yes, it does contain meatballs, but there’s a twist. Read on!
FIVE INGREDIENTS AND FIVE STEPS
One, pick your protein. I like the frozen veggie meatballs by Trader Joe’s. Microwave them until they are warm and ready to eat.
Two, use hot dog buns if you can’t source any other sub-style of fresh bread. Line with slices of Canadian cheddar. If you’re south of the 49th, opt for slices of American white cheese.
Three, layer the meatballs on top of the cheese on top of the bun. Liberally pour any of the wonderfully flavored sauces by Classico.
Four, put in the oven around 350°F for around 10 minutes to toast them – not burn them!
Five, garnish with shredded Parmesan cheese and freshly snipped basil.
Pour yourself a glass. Grab your saucy meatball sub. Now you can wine down and chill.
AN OLDIE BUT A GOODIE
Meatballs is a classic. Although it was released way back in 1979, it has become one of the quintessential movies about summer camp that gets streamed over and over around this time of year. The mere fact that it was filmed in Canada not far from where I will be in the midst of a wine down and chill week makes it all the more relevant.
Besides, my cuzzie was in Martha’s Vineyard last week and who did she see? Well, she actually missed Bill Murray who had just finished dining prior to her arrival. However, she heard all about his visit from her waiter. Apparently, Bill is a regular there and, no surprise, he’s a funny guy. On his way out the door, he reached over a patron’s plate to snag a french fry then quipped, “Nobody is going to believe you.” Classic. The man is pure comic genius!
If you’re in the mood for something distinctly more American but still set within the ‘80s era, try Wet Hot American Summer. The movie was released in 2001 and stars just about everyone famous, before they were famous, including Amy Poehler, Paul Ruud, Bradley Cooper, Jeanne Garofalo, Molly Shannon, and Elizabeth Banks. The list goes on, and on. Camp Firewood is probably not the safest place to send your child away to camp.
Grab your fly swatter, light up your citronella candle, and pour yourself a drink – it’s time to wine down and chill.