King Ranch Chicken and Jura

If some of yall never been down South too much,
I’m gonna tell you a little bit about this,
So that you’ll understand
What I’m talking about
Down there we have a casserole called King Ranch Chicken…

Posted today over at the Houston Press on a wonderful pairing of Tracie P’s off-the-charts good King Ranch Chicken, which she made a few nights before I left for Italy, and a bottle of Montbourgeau Savagnin.

Man, it’s good to be back home in Texas… :)

Eric the Red, I’ve got the Pearl beer on ice waiting for you…

(Who gets the song reference?)

The aura of BrooklynGuy’s table

From the “through a glass darkly” department…

Above: Anyone who reads BrooklynGuy’s blog knows the “aura” of his famous table. Tracie P took this photo of through a wonderful glass of Jura that he poured us when we visited with him and BrooklynFamily on a beautiful spring day in late May.

Alice has sat there. McDuff has sat there. Eric has sat there.

I just can’t convey the delight that flowed through my veins when Tracie P and I were invited to sit there last month while sojourning in New York City (once my home, too) in May.

For the life of me, I simply can’t remember why or how I discovered and started following BrooklynGuy’s blog. Over the course of the two years or so that I’ve been a fan, I’ve found vinous and culinary inspiration, buying guidance, good-natured humor, and an honesty and integrity of writing that are rivaled solely by the genuineness and purity of the style.

Above: There it is, the famous table, the one the appears in many of BrooklynGuy’s posts. Can you feel its aura?

But perhaps even more thrilling than the thought of sharing a glass of wine with BrooklynLady and BrooklynGuy and meeting the BrooklynChildren was the prospect of sitting at the storied table that appears in many of his posts and experiencing its aura.

The bottles that grace and graze that surface have passed the Litmus and acid tests of BrooklynGuy’s impeccable palate. It’s a classic case of Benjaminian mechanical reproduction. Through the repetitive appearance of the image of this simple wooden table in BrooklynGuy’s blog, the object itself has attained an aura that assumes its own unique meaning within the paradigm of ritualistic wine tasting.

Above: Look to BrooklynGuy’s blog for great tips in growers Champagne, the “mine field” of affordable Burgundy, and the often uncharted nuance of the Jura.

Over the course of these two years or so, BrooklynGuy’s become a friend and our visit with BrooklynFamily the other day revealed that not since Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner have two schlubs enjoyed the company of two such beautiful and simpatico wives.

Thanks BrooklynFamily for the wonderful Saturday afternoon visit, for the great wines and blog, and thanks — most of all — for the friendship.

Welcome back,
Your dreams were your ticket out.

Welcome back,
To that same old place that you laughed about.

Well the names have all changed since you hung around,
But those dreams have remained and they’re turned around.

Who’d have thought they’d lead ya (Who’d have thought they’d lead ya)
Here where we need ya (Here where we need ya)

Yeah we tease him a lot cause we’ve hot him on the spot, welcome back,
Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back.