This batch was made from a kit of Winexpert Selection International Series: Italian Montepulciano ($124) and a $6 bag of Hungarian Oak Cubes with “House Toast” (I’m guessing it’s a lighter toast than “Medium”).

After tasting a good result from soaking oak cubes in the recent Cabernet Franc vintage I’ve decided that every red wine kit should use these soaking cubes. The “sawdust” that comes with some of these kits is just not sufficient. I think the kit makers put too much of an emphasis on quick production. They could just as easily include a bag of these oak cubes and have a better result (in my mind). I’m even starting to think that I should use the oak cubes on every batch of wine I make.

Continue reading “Montepulciano”

Minecraft: Make Something Virtual

Have you checked out Minecraft yet? I was looking at it last night. You can play the “old” version for free online in your web browser via the Java plugin (yeah, a use for that thing, finally).

Here’s a blog post about it:

Read this: The Year Minecraft Made Playing Alone Cool Again.

It’s interesting. I’m tempted to play it ’cuz you can make yourself a cool virtual castle or, like this guy says, a giant water slide. I guess the only objective is to make a shelter before the sun sets, then the zombies come out. Or something.

Then I think, wait, I could instead spend that time creating something REAL in the REAL WORLD. Wait, that’s kind of what I’ve been doing my WHOLE life. I’m always, generally, drawing or painting or making websites or learning about fixing computers or making wine or teaching myself how to bind books or YOU NAME IT.

If people aren’t living their life like that, it’s no wonder so many people waste their entire lives watching brain-dead television or playing video games, looking for meaning in their life. I, fortunately, have a talent or a natural drive to keep making things and I am eternally grateful for that gift.

If you don’t have that drive, I guess Minecraft sounds like a good place to start learning.