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Daily Archives: February 28, 2012

A Special Award for a Local VA Winery

We received an email yesterday that I just have to share. Glen Manor Vineyards in Front Royal, VA won the VA Governor’s Cup for their 2009 Hodder Hill Meritage. I have written about Glen Manor wines here on the blog as they are some of our favorites, including those made from Glen Manor’s grapes while Jeff White grew for Linden.

We have earlier vintages of Hodder Hill in our cellar, tucked away in boxes waiting for them to mature. This wine is made from four of the five traditional Bordeaux varietals. Only Malbec is missing from the blend.

We have been drinking these wines since 1998 when Jeff’s first single vineyard designation appeared on a Linden label. We recently had a 1999 with dinner. Just like all of Linden’s reds, it was still big, beautifully balanced and still a bit tannic.

A visit in early January to Glen Manor resulted in our stocking up on
their Sauvignon Blancs while assuming we would get some Hodder Hill in April at their barrel tasting. Now, it may be difficult as he indicated he will have to ration us to four bottles. It seems the phone is ringing off the hook since he won this award.

The Virginia Governor’s Cup was revamped this year, making it a very stiff competition, with two levels of judging. The twelve top wines, designated the Governor’s Case, will be featured in marketing and at official state events. Winning this first place finish is indeed an honor for Jeff. Over 400 wines were entered, many of them from very respectable long standing vineyards, and some from “upstarts”.

I mean, how often can you say you beat The Donald? Yes, Glen Manor beat out the Trump aka Kluge blanc de blanc sparkling wine. Here is the link to the press release.

Virginia is so far ahead of MD in promoting local wines. For years we have found the agriculture and forestry office in their government to aggressively promote their wines, all the while MD has been putting road blocks in front of potential MD winemakers.

Now there is some support for MD’s boutique wineries, with legislation passed favorable to the industry, but they will have a hard time competing with VA.

For those of us who love local wines, any progress is a good thing. With Black Ankle getting national press last year, and Glen Manor rising to the top of a booming industry in VA, this region may finally get the respect they deserve. The hills all along the Appalachian Mountains are a perfect place to grow Vinifera. No need to buy foreign wines. Uncork a bottle of something locally grown and produced.

And enjoy the view.

Winter CSA Week Nine

Halfway done. This will be a review of what I have gotten so far and what I think about doing a winter CSA. We don’t have pics of the basket since I was in the hospital and my husband picked up the stuff from the porch and put it away. I had made choices based on knowing what he could do after my coming home this week, and being limited in food choices.

We did get eggs and all Angus beef franks, so my husband has a few things he can make this week. Scrambled eggs one night maybe, and chili dogs another evening, as I have leftover venison chili in the freezer.

I also ordered and received:
large yellow onions
sweet potatoes
oranges from FL
frozen fajita peppers
frozen broccoli and cauliflower

He can stir fry the veggies for a meal later this week.

What I Like About a Winter CSA
This one delivers to your porch. You go on line and order six or ten items. They change weekly to some extent but not always. There are repeats obviously due to the limited amount of winter veggies available. They have flash frozen items that they offer regularly. The eggs are great; different colors and sizes. Big yellow yolks. The meat is really good, but I had hoped for more varieties. Still nine weeks to go. We shall see what we get. But, the half of a free range turkey at Christmas was awesome.

Difficulties of a Winter CSA
You have to like potatoes and carrots and winter greens. Weather can be a factor for delivery, but at least this year not much bad weather to affect deliveries. Not much variety in the veggies, and some of it looks pretty gnarly. It tastes great though. It just doesn’t always look wonderful. I know that is a problem with many. They want picture perfect veggies, and organic farm produce isn’t.

Will we do it again? Probably. We like the convenience of fresh food delivered to our home. The family farm in Essex is being run well by George and Libby. It is small and personal, so you know where your food comes from. Zahradka Farm is a great source for Howard Countians to find local foods delivered to them.

Where else would you get a “Christmas Tree” to serve at your Christmas dinner?


It’s been a few days since I posted and I am bored of doing mostly nothing, so I will be trying out some picture less posting while relying solely on the iPad.

Major surgery will do that to you. After two days at HCGH, being taken care of quite well, I might add, I am home driving my husband crazy with requests. Anterior spinal disk fusion is not simple, nor something from which you bounce back quickly.

Three months ago, I had no idea I needed this done. That’s why I am glad we retired when we did. I had almost two years doing what I wanted before life got in the way of having fun. But, a late Novembeer trip to the emergency room with symptoms of a heart attack changed all that. It wasn’t a heart attack. It mimicked one, though, and subsequent diagnosis showed degenerative disk disease affecting my back, neck, arms and causing numbness and pain. Not what you want daily in your life.

Friday they did surgery. I get to wear a hard collar for weeks, followed by a combination of hard and soft collars, and can’t lift anything greater than five pounds. No driving for at least a month. My family and friends are all pitching in to help me with things I need to have done.

It will impact my having a garden this year, and we won’t be getting those chickens just yet. Still, I am lucky it was found before the collapsing disks constricted spinal fluid. The garden will be smaller, and more low maintenance. My husband intends to make some raised beds that I can easily reach. We will be going more to Larriland’s and Baugher’s for u pick fruits and veggies.

I may have to change the tag line on my blog for a while to Life in the slowest lane, but that’s better than life in the pain lane.