“You are so motivated to make sure the trip goes smoothly, because you know that the organs of these two kids are now going to save the lives of more than just a handful of other kids.”
Wine: Three South-of-the-Border Standouts
Mexican wine, while still a relatively small player on the world stage, boasts intense flavors and well-crafted vintages. Three prize-winning bottles to look for:
Casa Grande Gran Reserva Shiraz. This creation issues from Casa Madero, which was established in 1597 and is the oldest winery in the Americas. Casa Grande Gram Reserva Shiraz offers aromas of toasted almonds and eucalyptus with red fruits. A good-bodied wine with mature tannins that pairs well with roasts, it won a gold award at Concours Mondial de Bruxelles in Belgium and Mundus Vini in Germany.
Casa Grande Gran Reserva Chardonnay. This wine, also from Casa Madero, brings to mind peaches and vanilla in the nose, with a structured flavor reminiscent of toasted croissants and almonds. Pair it with mature cheeses, pasta dishes with creamy sauces, fish and chicken. This Chardonnay claimed gold at the AWC Vienna International Challenge in Austria.
Santo Tomas Duetto 2007. Santo Tomas is named after its home valley south of Ensenada, Baja California, where it was founded in 1888. Most Mexican wineries form a tight cluster around this “Ruta de Vino,” the sierra-surrounded valleys boasting a climate and terroir that echo the Mediterranean. Duetto 2007 is a varietal wine from the Valdepeñas grape of the San Vicente Ferrer valley and the Cabernet Sauvignon of the Santo Tomas valley. Aromas of ripe red fruit, figs, raisins, vanilla and sweet spices give way to complex tannins and an elegant finish. The wine—which goes well with steak, baked turkey and wild game—won a gold award at Concours Mondial de Bruxelles in Belgium.