One of my favorite things about going out to dinner is allowing a knowledgeable server to choose our wine for us. It’s always a fun surprise and nice to see what someone else picks, how it is similar or different than what I would pick for myself. It’s also a great way to go out of one’s wine comfort zone. I often choose a California wine, so when a server chooses something else, it gives me the opportunity to try something new and unexpected.

On Friday we returned to Sycamore in Newton, a really fantastic restaurant with delicious, always changing dishes, and a great staff. When a few of us decided on white wine with dinner, our server brought out this Valentin Zusslin Pinot D’Alsace.

Pinot D'Alsace

I often expect wines from Alsace to be sweet,  which I am not a fan of. This wine is made of Auxerrois, and it was nice and dry, exhibiting notes of honeysuckle and and peach, with a good body and some toasty undertones. It went so well with my potato soufflé, which had some buttery and earthy flavors in it. While the three of us sharing the bottle all had dramatically different dishes, we all agreed the wine was an excellent match.

I am hoping to discover a few more “Wines of the Week” this weekend when I visit the North Fork of Long Island again for some wine tasting!

Enjoy your Wine Wednesday!

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Tags: Alsace, white wine, wine, wine of the week, Wine Wednesday

If you’ve ever run the Boston Marathon, you are probably feeling a little like I am right now. I wish I was running this year! I love this race and this day so much, and I am definitely a little jealous of all of those runners who get to take back Boylston Street this year. Note, I was not jealous of them on sub-zero training days this winter.

It’s always fun for me to relive my Boston Marathon memories, whether as a spectator or runner, and I thought it might be fun for those of you outside Boston to experience it as well. Below are all of my Boston Marathon Expo and Marathon Monday recaps, along with a post on my thoughts after the 2013 Boston Marathon.

I am wishing all the best to runners who will be out there this Marathon Monday; I will be there losing my voice cheering!

Hereford and Boylston

{Right on Hereford, Left on Boylston – go take back that finish line!}

Boston Marathon Expo 2010 – I called this post Inspiration is Everywhere, because it always has been the case with the marathon. But now? I can’t even begin to marvel at how courageous and incredible the first responders and survivors have been. It reminds me I have absolutely no excuse to skip a run or to ever complain about anything, pretty much.

Boston Marathon 2010

Boston Marathon 2011 – Cheering!

Boston Marathon Expo 2012

Boston Marathon 2012

Boston Marathon 2013 – One of the worst days in this city’s history, one of the saddest days of our lives, and the worst day of many people’s lives, yet a day where everyday people became heroes, running toward what many of us would run away from.

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Well Happy Friday! For many it’s a holiday weekend and for many in Boston, a long weekend, culminating in what will once again be the best day of the year when we take back Marathon Monday.  Boston will be buzzing with energy and pride this weekend leading up to the Boston Marathon, and there are lots of fabulous restaurants in the city to celebrate in.

I recently attended the reveal of the new Bar at Grill 23. It takes what was previously a dark steakhouse and makes it chic, bright, and modern, all while maintaining some of that classic feel. It’s a gorgeous blend of old and new, and just in time for Spring and Summer, the windows open out on to the beautiful Boston streets. Grill 23 is a pretty key spot for your Marathon weekend dining as it is just blocks from the finish line.

Grill 23 Bar

The Bar at Grill 23 features lots of classic cocktails with a Grill 23 twist, as well as some I have not heard of. Fresh ingredients take up a section of the bar, and it was fun to check out all of the vibrant colors while we ordered our drinks.

cocktail ingredients

They also have a really fabulous by-the-glass wine list, and on the very chilly day I stopped in, I was in the mood for one of my favorites, a Cabernet Franc. I love that Grill 23 has a wine list made up of $23 bottles of wine, and it actually features some great selections like abovementioned Cab Franc. The $23 wine list is perfect for groups of friends to be able to try a few bottles with dinner without breaking the bank.

Cabernet Franc

At the opening of the bar, we feasted on cheeses, charcuterie, and my favorite, mini versions of the House Blend Burger. A burger and a glass of Cab Franc were simply perfect together.

Grill 23 burgers

I really enjoyed the time I spent at the Bar at Grill 23, and I look forward to returning for sampling more of their bar bites and creative cocktail menu.

If you are in the Boston area, will you be cheering on Marathon Monday? If you live somewhere else, what are your weekend dining plans?

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Tags: Boston, cocktails, Dining out, events, Grill 23, Restaurants, wine

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