By Clarence Jackson
Sitting on the deck catching the warmth of the sun and watching everyone heading back to the city. It’s 6:30 p.m. Monday, and the second last long weekend of the summer has come to a close. Two fishermen empty a pail of entrails from a successful day on the water on the sliver of an island just off from our shore. The gulls are somewhat reluctant to swoop in for the free meal. They have to wait their turn. A large bald eagle is perched in a tree above calling them off or calling for help. Help it is as another swoops in and they both land, grab what they can, and fly off to their nest on another island nearby. They leave and the gulls swoop in. They return and the gulls fly off. A very healthy harvest for all.
It was a strange summer, one that felt as though it had only just begun and it was over. The garden. The lake. Summer camp. Road trips. Summer festivals. The mosquitos – and those two or three days of biting flies. And of course, the water. Oh, the water.
In the city we watched and read the flood reports, those affected had a spring/summer rife with worry and hard work protecting themselves and their neighbours from rising water. Some seeded and some weren’t able to. Many of those that did, did so in vain and are unable to complete the cycle of life on the land with the harvest. At the lake, boathouses and docks are under water. High water has washed away shoreline and debris floating made navigation hazardous, particularly at night.
As we ease back into routine, harvest the garden’s bounty of root vegetables, squash, melons and cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, etc.), contemplate farmers’ markets and fall/fowl suppers, we give a nod to another summer past and welcome the fall: Long sleeves and legs. Striking colours, hearty fare. No mosquitos.
“And I’m soaking it up in my mind And I’m pretending like it’s paradise on a golden autumn day, on a golden autumn day” – Van Morrison
Nuevo Mundo Viognier Reserva (Organic)
(Maipo Valley, Chile; $14.05 Manitoba Liquor Mart)
Light and lively with great character and varietal typicity. Fruits such as apricots, white peaches and citrus are evident. The mouth feel is extremely attractive and the velvety tannins are seductive and appealing. It is a fruity, fresh and very easy drinking wine.
Bodega Palacios Remondo ‘La Vendimia’
(The harvest/vintage, translated from Spanish)
(Rioja, Spain; $16.99 Manitoba Liquor Mart)
“… An aromatic wine, with notes of flowers, wild strawberries and licorice. The palate of this 50/50 blend of Garnacha and Tempranillo is fruity, with velvety tannins and good acidity. A quaffable young Rioja at a super price.”
Think braised red meats, roasted root vegetables,
hearty stews, and poultry.
The Grape Cosmo
(Three Olives Grape Vodka – $24.99 Manitoba Liquor Mart)
1 ½ oz Three Olives Grape Vodka
½ oz triple sec
2 oz cranberry juice
Splash of fresh lime juice
Three Olives Grape Vodka is a unique blend of imported English vodka and the natural taste of juicy concord grapes. Mix all ingredients in a shaker filled with ice. Shake well. Strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a wedge of lime.