Monthly Archives: April 2011

Beer is For Breakfast

Remember the 1980’s movie Cocktail? Brian Flanagan’s friend Doug quotes…”Beer is for breakfast, drink or be gone!” It’s one of my favorite movie lines. That’s how beer used to be. Watery, low alcohol, yellow beer (I suppose that type of beer is still on the market), that’s light enough to pour over your bowl of Cheerios. Part of your nutritious breakfast! This was before the days of high ABV craft brews. In the past decade of this craft beer revolution, the trend has been to cram as much alcohol into a pint of beer, while still retaining some sort of hop/malt balance.

Most recently however, the pendulum from the high gravity beers seems to be swinging back. More and more people are demanding session style beers, light enough to have a few pints and not fall off your bar stool, but enough ingredients to give you the complex flavor you are craving.

I love a full-bodied, full-flavored craft beer as much as the next person. But a lot of times that means high alcohol to go along with it. I don’t know about you, but I’m not always in the mood to drink to get drunk.  I have a pretty good tolerance, but for a 5’6″, 125lb female – one and a half pints of a 9% beer and I’m ramping up for a late night.

Luckily brewers are getting the hint and crafting some mighty tasty low ABV beers these days; beers that will get you through an evening at the bar with your best buddies without feeling the wrath the next morning. These beers are starting to become more accessible –  your favorite local brewery may even have a session style ale or lager. But what exactly is a session beer?

The style has actually been around since World War I, but has remained dormant until recently. As the story goes, during WWI shell production in England, workers were only allowed to have a few pints at their local watering hole during government regulated “sessions” of 11am-3pm and 7pm-11pm. Since they were shift workers and many of them were returning to work at odd hours,  they could only be served low alcohol beer in order to avoid being sauced on the job. Heavy equipment + drunk Brits is a bad combo.

Here is the official definition from Beer Advocate:

session beer
Any beer that contains no higher than 5 percent ABV, featuring a balance between malt and hop characters (ingredients) and, typically, a clean finish – a combination of which creates a beer with high drinkability. The purpose of a session beer is to allow a beer drinker to have multiple beers, within a reasonable time period or session, without overwhelming the senses or reaching inappropriate levels of intoxication.

Probably the most well known session style beer theses days is (aptly named), Session Lager, by Full Sail Brewing Company. Winner of the World Beer Awards 2010 and coming in at 5.1% ABV. There are numerous other beers classified as session style as posted on the label, and still others that you might just have to classify on your own. A new summertime favorite and perfect boat beer is Cisco Brewing Sankaty Lager in both bottles and cans, at 3.8% ABV. Not specifically a “session” beer, but I am going to go ahead and classify it as one.

The hot days of summer are just around the corner. Now is the time to seek out your new favorite session beer!

The Worst Things You Can Do To Wine

I’ve seen a lot of bad things happen to wine over the years, some committed by people I love, respect and even a few faux pas from myself.  So I’ve decided to compile them in a sort of what ‘not to do’ guide to wine.  If nothing else please for the sake of the wine, the land and the winemaker just don’t do any of the below.  Feel free to add your thoughts in the comment section.

8.  Leave it in your car
Want to know the quickest way to ruin a perfectly good bottle of wine?  Leave it in your car for an hour or so.  Plus the cork will probably pop, the wine will leak and you will have a bit of a mess to clean up.

7.  Mix it with ice cubes, sprite, coca-cola or any other beverage
Don’t even get us started on this.  If you don’t like the taste of wine, order a soda instead.

6.  Mix two wines together into one
A ‘blended’ wine happens at the winery with a winemaker who is trained in what percentages of each grape should be blended together.  Mixing two separate wines together does not taste good, ever.

5.  Open a bottle and then proceed to ‘finish’ it over the next couple weeks
Once you open a bottle of wine it typically has a shelf life of 12 to 48 hours, depending on how it is stored and the quality.  That wine that you are ‘finishing’ eight days later is properly vinegar.

4.  Return an empty bottle to a restaurant/retailer and claim it was bad
If the bottle was bad, why did you finish it?

3.  Serve it in Solo cups
A solo cup is an appropriate vessel for Milwaukee’s Best, not a Napa Cabernet.

2.  Chug/funnel it
Wine is meant to be enjoyed.  But if you don’t believe me, try it – chug wine.  I dare you (it is not a pleasant experience).

1.  Drink the wine out of the spit bucket
Believe it or not this happens, often.  It’s just gross, forget wine faux pas.

Earth Day: Wine’s Top 7 Earth Accomplishments


An image gallery of Cuvasion's earth friendly practices

With Organic, Sustainable, and Biodynamic all trending words in wine lingo, wineries are leading the way in activities supporting our earth.  Here are just a few that I find quiet impressive:

7.  Hall:  Sustainable farming practices; certified Napa Green Land & certified Napa Green Winery which is a certification issued by the Napa County Agriculutrual Commissoners office to wineries that practice sustainable winery and farming practices.

6.  Frog’s Leap Winery:  Not only are they certified Napa Green Land, but this winery also uses dry farming (a method that reduces the amount of used water), plants cover crops (crops that foster natural nutrients to serve as a habitat for indigenous insects and animals), uses LEED practices  & solar energy for their winery headquarters AND also practices biodynamic farming (although they are not certified).

5.  Shafer:  Started sustainable farming practices in the late 1980’s; uses nesting boxes for owls & perch poles for raptors.  The use of boxes & perch poles attracts birds that kill rodents and insects thereby reducing Shafer’s need for pesticides.  In 2004, they switched to 100% solar power, over Shafer’s lifetime they estimate the impact of the solar energy switch will be equal to planting 17,000 trees.

4.  ZD Wines:  Was in the forefront of organic farming and began doing so in the early 1980’s before they even applied for certification.  Uses compost as chemical fertilizer.

3. Hess:  Certified Napa Green Winery & Napa Green Land; sustainable farming practices including composting, cover crops, soil management with no til farming; owl boxes & perches to attract natural birds and reduce use of pesticides, water conservation, dry farming, erosion control.

2.  Honig: Cover crops; owl boxes/nesting boxes;  No herbicides; Use of bio diesel in tractors; Drip irrigation; Improving the habitat for indigenous animals beyond the vineyard.  In addition to ALL of that, Honig launched a photvoltaic system (they call it their electricity farm) that generates enough power to run the entire winery.

1.  Cuvasion:  In 2009, Cuvaison opened their new Carneros tasting room next to their solar powered facility.  Just a few short years after completing the solar power facility, Cuvasion is actually producing more energy that it needs.  On top of that, they are also active in with the code of Sustainable Winegrowing Practice, sustainably farmed, certified Napa Green Winery & Green Land, and active in cork recycling.  Pretty impressive.  You can even check out their website that maintains an accurate report of the output of their solar energy.

Malbec World Day Post Celebration and Review

In honor of Argentina’s first Malbec World Day, I’m dedicating this post to the future annual celebration and the country’s ‘hero’ grape – Malbec.

Malbec World Day was established by the Wines of Argentina council with the goal of creating a worldwide celebration of the main grape grown in Argentina.  The date of April 17th was chosen as it coincides with the establishment & recognition of Quinta Normal – an organization that sought to bring new grape varietals and establish the wine industry of Argentina – by the Argentine government.  April 17th represents the starting point of the wine industry in Argentina and the establishment of Malbec as its lead grape.

Malbec World Day organized tastings and events all around the world including Toronto, New York, Washington, London, Napa and of course Mendoza.  The main feature of the festival, however, was a three-way international blend of the ‘perfect’ Malbec.  Three top world wine experts flew to Argentina to pick the grapes to use in their wine.  Wines of Argentina is then flying the grapes back to each of their home countries and giving the experts the task of bottling the perfect Malbec, in the Argentine way.  After 12 months of preparation and cellaring, the experts and the wines will return for a competition.  I guess we’ll have to wait for the 2nd annual Malbec World Day to know the results of that one.

In our own sort of way, we’re celebarting Malbec by featuring a few of our favorites below…

Decero Malbec
Mendoza, Argentina
89 points Wine Spectator, 92 points Wine Advocate
Bold fruit flavors balanced by a freshness from the acidity; flavors of ripe berries, cocoa and a hint of oak. 

Amalaya Malbec 
Salta (Andean NW), Argentina
70% Malbec, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Syrah, 5% Tannat
Grown at the highest altitude in the world (10,000 ft for Cabernet, 7,000 ft for Malbec), this wine displays the typical fruit you’ll find in Malbec’s and blends from this region with a restraint on the heavy structure and body.  Balanced tannins and oak adds a bit of a spice on the finish. 

I Will Not Drink Bad Wine, I Will Not Drink Bad Wine

cc: Cabernet

CC: Cabernet, I Will Not Drink Bad Wine

It’s not often in life that you find a bottle of wine that completely sums up your philosophy.  We were fortunate enough to be introduced to such a bottle by one of our customers (thank you Bill!) last week.  It’s called simply “I Will Not Drink Bad Wine.”  There you go, our philosophy on life (well at least how its related to wine).

I Will Not Drink Bad Wine is produced as both a Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay from Napa Valley & Monterey respectively and retails for $25 (Cab) and $17 (Chard).  Although the label is catching on its own, the best part about this wine is that it really is that good for the price point.  The proper name of the wine is CC:, but we like to call it by its nickname.

After a perusal of their website (which is fun just to visit, click here), I found out that the wine is produced by Betts & Scholl.  Betts & Scholl is a partnership project between Richard Betts, Master Sommelier & Wine Director at The Little Nell in Aspen, Colorado (just one more reason we love Aspen so much) and Dennis Scholl, a wine collector and enthusiast who splits his time between Aspen and Miami (kind of like us!)  Betts & Scholl is dedicated to premium wines from only the best land and best fruit, their wines typically range from $40 – 70 per bottle.  So for them, CC: is kind of second label.  A second label we’d put up against any value wine in the store though…

The Chardonnay is crisp and clean with the characteristic fruit you should enjoy from a Chardonnay.  Produced entirely in stainless steel there is no oak or butter to get in the way.  The Cabernet has great fruit and a well balanced – soft but complex – finish.  CC: claims the fruit comes from a famous vineyard off of Route 29 in Napa Valley – Hall perhaps, Grgich Hills, Whitehall Lane, even Far Niente/Nickel & Nickel?  I guess we’ll never no.  But the most important part, is that this wine is definitely not bad.

CC: Chardonnay (I Will Not Drink Bad Wine)

Lager or Ale? What’s the Difference?

In honor of our first upcoming Brew Ha-Ha, or beer festival if you will, I thought I would dedicate a post to our most popular beer question….What’s the difference between a lager and an ale?

There are actually only two basic categories of beer:  lager and ale.   The difference lies in three main processes of the brewing that takes us a little onto the ‘beer geek’ side.

There are two different types of yeast strains – top-fermenting and bottom-fermenting.  The name is actually as simple as it sounds…top-fermenting yeast sits on top of the beer while it’s in the fermentation tank, bottom-fermenting on the bottom.  Ales use top-fermenting yeasts which rise to the top of the tank at the end of the fermentation process.  This type of yeast also adds the flavors to the Ale, which comes from chemical compounds within the yeast called “esters.”  Lagers use the second kind of yeast, bottom-fermenting, which is also able to be reused after one batch is complete.  However, this type of yeast does not add any flavor to the beer – that usually comes from hops and malts that are added in later.

The yeast used in ale prefers higher temperature for fermentation (room temperature up to 75 degrees F), the higher temperature also causes an increase in the fermentation process producing mature beer much faster than lagers.  Lagers, by contrast, ferment at a much slower pace and cooler temperatures (46 – 59 degrees F).  Back in the day, lagers were only made in cooler European climates like Germany.  The term ‘lager’ originally stems from the German word ‘lagern,’ meaning to store which helped Germans distinguish the lager process v. ale process (lagers need more time to ferment and therefore are stored during fermentation).

Other Ingredients
During the brewing process for ales, many recipes call for additional hops, malts, and other ingredients that result in a more bitter and malty taste than lagers.  Ale brewers tend to be a bit more experimental in their recipes adding flavored malts, roasted malts, coffee and even chocolate (called adjuncts in the brewing process).  Lagers are much more basic when it comes to ingredients, which may stem from the old German 1516 Beer Purity Law. It seems more lager producers follow this law trying to stay in the style of traditional German lagers.  The law was originally put in place to prevent brewers from using sub-par ingredients for a way to save some dollars.  However, it now restricts brewers (Germans in particular) to certain hops and malts to keep the crisp, clean taste of a lager.

So what does all that mean to me?
When it comes to beer, yes there are basically only two kinds:  ales and lagers.  But the amount sub categories in those two types has greatly expanded over the last few years especially with the increase of micro breweries across the world.   In general, lagers are lighter and crisper in flavor and ales have a bit more of a backbone.  But it really depends on the producer.  Best bet?  Ask your local beer professional (yours truly & our staff) about what would best match your tastes.  Or taste a lot of different styles – Pale Ales, IPAs, Stouts, etc. (like at our next beer tasting) and decide what you like on your own!..

Touring California

Another formal wine presentation tonight for some new corporate clients.  We are going to tour California with some of our favorites from Napa, Sonoma, and Monterey.  Here are my notes for your perusal.

Domaine Carneros Brut

  • Champagne style wine
  • Blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir
  • Winery owned by Taittinger (famed Champagne family)
  • Grapes grown in the Carneros region of California
  • Cooler growing region, better for grapes of this type
  • Vintage dated
  • Brut style means not only means dry but also the traditional blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir
  • Rated 91 points by Spectator
  • Flavors fresh cherry and bright pear

Caymus Conundrum

  • The fun part of Conundrum is we don’t know what it is
  • Typically 5 grapes dominated by Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay
  • Sourced from all over California including Napa, Sonoma, Monterey, and Tulare counties
  • Each lot of grapes treated separately and fermentated separately including aging some grapes in French oak and others in Stainless Steel tanks
  • Blend changes every year
  • Made by Caymus Winery/Wagner Family – one of the California winery royals
  • Honeysuckle (Muscat), Butter/Silk Texture (Chardonnay), Bell Pepper/Grass (Sauvignon Blanc), Spicy, Crisp finish (Viognier)

Cuvasion Chardonnay

  • Cuvasion winery 2 locations – St Helena & Carneros
  • Grow Chardonnay and Pinot Noir at Carneros location, because of cooler climate
  • Ferment Chardonnay in neutral French oak, typically 1 – 2 years used
  • Dry style, very balanced
  • Peach, pineapple (typical of CY), clove and toast (French oak)

Fogdog Pinot Noir

  • One of my favorites
  • From Sonoma Coast right near the Pacific, they grow exclusively Pinot Noir and Chardonnay
  • Owned and made by Joseph Phelps who also owns Insignia which recently received 99 point rating for ’07 Cabernet
  • 100% sourced from 2 vineyards
  • Fermented for 15 months in 45% new French oak and 55% 2-3 year used barrels
  • Wine is typical of Sonoma Coast
  • Spice and backbone balanced with minerality and cherry

Chappellet Mountain Cuvee

  • Bordeaux style blend from California
  • 6 Bordeaux Grapes:  Cabernet Sav, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot, Carmenere
  • Chappellet’s Cuvee has all except Carmenere
  • Aged in French oak
  • This wine is made for early consumption – i.e. not to be aged
  • Complex wine with full fruit (Cab & Merlot), earth/floral (Cab Franc) and toasted finish (oak aging)

Stags Leap Wine Cellars Hands of Time

  • It’s 1976, California is set to compete with the French (kings of the wine world) in their famous annual blind tasting, two wines emerge as winners:  Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars Cabernet & Chateau Montelena Chardonnay
  • Stag’s Leap was founded by William Winiarski in early 70’s and has been home to some very famous wine makers
    • Bob Sessions (Hanzell)
    • John Williams (Frog’s Leap)
    • Ricardo Herrera (Screaming Eagle)
    • Paul Hobbs (Paul Hobbs)
    • Michael Silicci (Opus One)
    • John Kongsgaard (Kongsgaard/Arietta)
  • This wine honors all of those and other winemakers of SLWC in “Hands of Time”
  • Cabernet (51%), Merlot (46%), Syrah (3%)
  • Fresh berries – cherry, strawberry, raspberry

Fleur du Cap: Award Winning South African Winery

South African wine is hot right now.  It’s the new trend everyone is following, and its event hotter to travel there and taste South Africa’s ‘real’ wine (it is highly rumored that they exported the ‘crap’ and keep the good stuff for themselves).  As a retailer, we’ve actually found that rumor to be more fact than fiction.  It is hard to find good South African wine, especially at the price points that our customers – and us – are looking for.  Sure you can find a good Caberent from South Africa for $35-$50 per bottle.  But you should be able to find that any where in the world.  But bottles for $15 and under, $10 and under – you have to dig a bit deeper.

One producer we have become big fans of is Fleur du Cap.  Although they are owned by a bigger conglomerate (Distell), the winery maintains their mantra of home grown wines “inspired by nature.”  Fleur du cap focuses on the grape and terrior and allows their wines to express the vine and earth.  The grapes are grown in the famous Stellenbosch vineyards and made at The Bergkelder, a cellar built into the heart of the mountains.  Fleur du cap believes in minimal human intervention, leaving the wine to develop mainly on its own.  Very little oak is used, and if so is typically neutral French oak used two or three times.

Recently the wines from this premium producer have been gaining press and popularity with multiple awards for each wine, each vintage.  However, most impressively Andrea Freeborough, Fleur du Cap’s winemaker, was named South Africa’s top woman winemaker in 2010.  Following that nod, the winery itself received an even larger honor in 2010 from the International Wine & Spirit Competition (London) being awarded South Africa’s producer of the year.

The wines of Fleur du Cap have definitely impressed us by both their quality and hands off approach of letting the wines develop into a accurate representation of the grape and the land.  Shockingly though, they have managed to keep the price points of the wine extremely friendly starting just at $9/bottle and topping off at $25.  Certainly a line of wines worth exploring at those prices.

Here are some suggestions:

A Smoky Vintage: 2008 California Pinot Noir

An active 2008 wildfire season affected some northern California wineries. Image courtesy of Flickr user rskoon

We may not remember it clearly, but the headlines during the summer of 2008 were all about the wildfires raging in California.  They spread from Santa Barbara to Oregon.  They were collectively called the “Northern California Lightning Series” which included over 2,700 individual fires which spanned from May 22nd to July 25th.  During late June (the worst week of the season), much of the area was covered in thick, dark smoke and numerous areas recorded record high levels of air pollution.  Then the fires ended, the summers ended and we (as consumers) moved on.  Many of us haven’t even had a second though about those fires, until now.

In contrast, many Californian wine makers have thought about those summer fires everyday for the last two years.    How would they avoid that dreaded ‘smoke taint’ left over from the fires.

The most affected growing regions were the Sonoma Coast and Anderson Valley.  Anderson Valley was hit the hardest.  As we fast forward two years, we expect to see many of the Anderson Valley Pinot Noirs we love so much release their 2008 vintage.  But not many are emerging.  The San Francisco Chronicle only received 12 bottles for their annual tasting of new releases in October.  In the midst of debating how to handle this particular smoky vintage, many wineries chose simply just not to release a Pinot for the year, rather than get killed in ratings and reviews.  The Wall Street Journal compared the ’08 Anderson Valley Pinots to a ‘wet ashtray’ in their review of the vintage with an equally devastating title to the article, “Sipping These Wines Is Like Smoking and Drinking at the Same Time.”

As word continues to spread about these wines, there are stories of wine makers who have taken a stand to the vintage.  Many have employed techniques to remove the smoke taint…called reverse osmosis (some may remember this from high school science class)….in which wine is separated into two different streams and the smoke compound is filtered out before the two streams recombine to form wine.  Some wine makers argue that this is an unnatural process for wine to go through, but many in an effort to save their grapes and vintage had no other option.

Our advice…be cautious but slightly adventurous.  There are some good bottles of Pinot to be found in Anderson Valley in 2008 (particularly the ones that went through reverse osmosis), and right now you will probably get a particularly good buy on them!

A Wine List Fit for a King (or Queen)

Bern's Tampa Wine Cellar

Al and I in Bern's Wine Cellar

A few weeks ago we made the lengthy voyage up to Tampa (ok it was only a two hour drive) to dine at Bern’s Steak House.  We’ve heard over and over and over about how wonderful this place is and how the wine list is just beyond comparison.  So being the winos, that we are we just had to investigate.

Bern’s Steak House is located in one of the shoddier sections of Tampa and looks like nothing more than a pub house from the exterior.  But once inside, you automatically feel like you are transformed to a retro castle that is surprisingly reminiscent of the Haunted Mansion in Walt Disney World.

Bern's Tampa Wine

Our selection of wines for the night

Bern’s opened in 1956 and has been impressing customers since then with their unwavering devotion to customer service and quality.  Each customer is offered a complimentary tour of both the wine room and kitchen.  The kitchen is the most well oiled machine I have ever seen.  There are separate stations (mini kitchens) for each menu item from a grill that can cook 200 steaks to an in-kitchen fish tank where rumor has it you can even pick your own fish from.  The staff at Bern’s starts literally from the ground up, in the Bern’s farm field.  Bern’s grows and produces 100% of the products they serve.  Employees start by working in the fields then move up to the apprentices and finally servers.  The servers at Bern’s have made a commitment (some working five years or more before gaining their current position) to have a career at the restaurant, not as a part time gig.  They each have their own room (anywhere between 8 and 15 tables) and pride themselves on the equipment they have purchased for that room – salt and pepper grinders, knives, etc.

Bern's Tampa

Our table after three bottles had been opened, no room for food!

And then there is the wine room.  Starting in 1956, Bern’s Steak House has made an investment in all kinds of wine – premium brands, cult brands, 1st growth Bordeaux’s down to California’s first cult Cabernet.  The best part?  Bern’s generates their markup on bottles of wine off of what they originally purchased it for.  For example, if a bottle of Inglenook Cabernet cost $10 in 1968, the current markup is off that $10 cost.  The cellar is a true work of art, made in the way cellars should be made – old school.  The dust and must as soon as you enter may trigger some allergic reactions, but definitely alerts you to the fact that the wine is being stored in optimal conditions.  With over 6,500 selections and 5o0,000 bottles; Bern’s has the most extensive restaurant wine list in the world and one of the largest cellars in the world next to a few others we’ve heard of in Canada and France.  The wine apprentice even admitted to us, “We’re not even sure what’s in there…” after passing a room of properly stored bottles that were also pristinely wrapped in bubble wrap.  He also said while he was doing inventory of the room he found a Burgundy worth over $10,000.

Below is a list of what we were able to drink, the prices we paid and what the bottle would cost in a retail location like ours.  Bern’s is by far the most unique restaurant I have ever been to.  The food is impeccable, the décor fun, and the wine is just unbelievable.  If you haven’t been there, we urge you to go – whether from Naples or across the country – its worth the trip no matter the length.  And don’t forget the dessert room!

1968 Inglenook Cabernet

1968 Inglenook Cabernet

Wine #1:  Inglenook Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, 1968
Price paid:
Retail price: $218 (1 retailer in the U.S.)
Description: Inglenook was the original Napa Valley cult wine.  Established in 1879, Inglenook was founded in the Rutherford area of Napa.  After surviving both the death of its owner and Prohibition, the majority of the Inglenook land was sold to Francis Ford Coppola.  The remainder of the land and the brand name was sold and resold to a number of large brand names that now produce low quality wines under the label.  This wine is illusive and won’t be around for many more years.
Tasting notes: When we first opened it, the fruit seemed to be gone.  But surprisingly got better and better as the night went on.  Rank 2/4.

Ropiteau Volnay 1982

Wine of the night - Ropiteau Volnay Premier Cru 1982

Wine #2: Chateau Ropiteau Le Clos des Chenes, Premier Cru Volnay, 1982
Price paid:
Retail price: Not available
Description: This is the wine I selected as my ‘birthday’ wine I selected because one I’m a huge Pinot Noir fan and have just been getting into Burgundy over the last year.  I discovered a few other Volnays that I have loved and with the help of the Sommelier selected this smaller production gem.  It was the wine of the night, with the perfect balance of fruit and terrior at what I believe was the perfect time to pop this bottle.

Wine #3:  Joseph Jamet Cote Rotie, 1982
Price paid:
Retail price: Not available
Description: A typical Cote Rotie, mainly Syrah, this wine was large with enormous notes of leather.  This wine was perfect to pair with the amazing steaks we had for dinner but still need at least another five years.

Wine #4:  Lungarotti Rubesco Riserva, 1978
Price paid:
Retail price: $75+
Description:  To be honest there was so much wine that night I don’t know clearly remember this wine.  But I do remember that it was soft and smooth, great with the steak and wonderful!