So Rob and I have this tradition of winding down the weekend with dinner at the Beach every Sunday night after Winter is over. This season, we’ve started going to Saturday nights too. We have this spot right along the Ventura Hwy that’s not frequented so we usually have the place to ourselves. We load up the Westy with the dogs, our cooler with all our dinner fixings and of course, wine. Now what’s interesting about these outings is we keep to the bare minimum, nothing fancy except usually we eat and drink well – something we’re determined to never give up. Although we don’t drink out of nice wine glasses and we eat off plastic plates, some of our meals have consisted of littleneck clams on the grill drizzled with butter and garlic and chunky sourdough, spicy grilled sausages with polenta and last night we had tri-tip tacos. The catch is that everything has to be able to go on our little Smoky Joe grill – layering works pretty good if you don’t need direct heat on things such as bread and tortillas.
Same goes for the wine, not on the grill mind you, but no skimping here either – except we drink out of coffee cups. Last night we invited our friend Jerry to come along and he brought a bottle of Gelfand Red Table wine which is a blend of Petite Sirah, Syrah and Zinfandel. Very dark and inky and flat out huge – lots of fruit up front with flavors of green and black pepper. We then proceeded on to the gem of the evening, the ’05 Shelter Cabernet Sauvignon from the Headwater vineyard in Napa Valley. I think I’ve told the story of this wine in a previous blog so I won’t go into it again here. This wine has had some good bottle time and has really developed into a smooth, rounded wine. I get flavors of dark chocolate, coffee and a smoky quality – like pipe smoke. Overall a delicious wine with the tri-tip.
I think we’re probably going to the beach again tonight. We’ll be grilling up some gourment burgers with red onion and mushrooms on ciabatta rolls. I think it’s a Zinfandel night – maybe a Ridge from Lytton Springs.