Seasons spinning round again

Seasons spin quickly here in Wisconsin, like dials on a slot machine, so when we hit on a jackpot, we toast it with giddy glee.

That’s what happened for us this weekend, when the sun warmed our little cabin in the woods, welcoming weary travelers, their baby sister, relieved parents and one unfortunate but really tasty bird.

Following a three-month stint working at a Chilean vineyard, our son Vinnie and daughter in-law Danni arrived back in Wisconsin with some delicious wine and Chilean treats, and fascinating stories of their adventures.

To honor the return of our prodigal progeny, we killed a fatted calf, but not literally. Our feast involved an impossibly fresh wild turkey, shot by Vince just a few hours before our meal and massaged into lettuce wraps by our resident (for the weekend anyway) chef Molly.

We enjoyed our first campfire of the season and sipped the best red wine I’ve ever tasted. Vinnie and Danni explained that the winery they worked at in Chile was known for its fusion of Chilean and Italian cultures. Apparently, it is extremely rare to find a blend between the Barbera grape (which is of Italian origin) and Garnacha grape (which is of Spanish origin).

Erasmo, the vineyard they worked on in Chile, grew the No. 1 ranked Garnacha grapes in Chile, which is what made that wine so special.

Of course, the most special thing about that wine was the people with whom we got to drink it.

Let’s all raise a glass (or coffee mug) to everything we enjoy and never take for granted: beautiful sunsets, warm weather, fresh food, talented chefs, rich wine and the people we love.

The days will grow warmer, the sun will rise higher and summer will bring us even more opportunities to relax with our family and friends.

Cheers to that!

Here’s a glass of that delicious wine in the Erasmo Vineyard…
…and here it is at our little cabin in the woods. The wine, like its grape-stompers, travels well.
I’m clutching it here like I’m not going to share, but I did. We are giddy to get to hang together.
The first campfire of the season.
Our dinner…
I get a little queasy when I think about how that turkey was running around enjoying the day just moments before becoming our dinner, but I feel a little better about the whole circle of life thing when I watch Molly make sure we use almost every inch of that bird.
She made us these turkey lettuce wraps that paired perfectly with our wine and that hint-of-summer weather.
Such a glorious, sunkissed weekend!
I suggested an April river float but wiser heads prevailed. That water is still quite chilly! But, we’re almost there, Wisconsin. Summer is just around that river bend!

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