wine me

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Sometimes you just need to open a bottle of wine. With enjoy a glass of wine you need to get the cork out first and there are many types of corkscrews for that. A corkscrew is a kitchen tool for drawing corks from wine bottles. Generally, a corkscrew consists of a pointed metallic helix (often called the “worm”) attached to a handle. The user grips the handle and screws the metal point into the cork, until the helix is firmly embedded, then a vertical pull on the corkscrew extracts the cork from the bottle. Corkscrews are necessary because corks themselves, being small and smooth, are difficult to grip and remove, particularly when inserted fully into an inflexible glass bottle. The handle of the corkscrew, often a horizontal bar of wood attached to the screw, allows for a commanding grip to ease removal of the cork. Corkscrew handles may incorporate levers that further increase the amount of force that can be applied outwards upon the cork.

After all of that knowledge I am sure you are ready for a glass one wine. If you need a tutorial of how to use a corkscrew there is one below. Drink up and enjoy!

 

upstate

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Let me give you a little geography lesson about New York, and all of you New Yokers out there can correct me if I am wrong. Upstate New York is a region of the U.S. state of New York north of the core of the New York metropolitan area. There is no clear or official boundary between Upstate New York and Downstate New York, and other names exist for regions north of New York City — either as part of, or distinct from, the Upstate region. Basically from the image you see (yes, which is an image of the THEORETICAL 2012 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION RESULTS BY UPSTATE/DOWNSTATE) the red indicates UPSTATE and the Blue is DOWNSTATE– also known as “The City”.

Over the weekend, I had my first Vineyard experience and it was nothing less than great! New York was a great place to experience world-class wines which paired beautifully with picture-perfect countryside, smiles and relaxation. Finger Lakes Wine Country is home to almost 100 wineries, breweries and distilleries centered around three main lakes: Keuka, Seneca, and Cayuga.

From the vineyards we checked out, my suggestion is if you are ever in the area try these few on for size: American and Lucas.

I cannot wait for another trip to Upstate New York. It was the perfect get away from the city weekend.

club w

calling all winos

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

This post is all about wine and drinking it. Last week I stumbled upon Club W when I found a free pomo code for two bottles of wine. After seeing the promo, I was very intrigued and checked out their website. Though this is a little copy and paste, they can explain what their motto is best.

Learning about wine should be fun, not overbearing or pretentious. We produce a short video for every wine featuring one of our curators that includes tasting notes and other background information such as the producer’s story, an explanation of the growing region or a primer on the varietal. A QR code on every bottle that we ship will take you directly to the video. It’s an easy, un-obtrusive way to learn about the wine you’re about to enjoy, if you’re so inclined.

No Jargon. No BS. Just great wine.

  • Our team of curators source some of the coolest small production wine from around the world and present new bottles every month.
  • Love something we sent you last month? As long as we have bottles left you can add more to your next order.
  • Know what you like? Perfect, pick exactly what you want from our selection.
  • A Club W Experience is commitment free and guaranteed to make you happy. Cancel or skip a shipment any time. Don’t like something? We’ll send you a replacement or a refund.

So, this sounds pretty awesome, huh? I like that idea that they match your pallet based on your likes and dislikes and your taste buds. I ordered my wine last week and needless to say I am anxious to start sipping on it. Once I get it, I will give you a full review of the service and product.

wine into water

the miracle machine

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Now, we can turn wine into water. It sounds just too good to be true, but is it? I will let you decide. As an avid wine drinker (thanks family), I like searching about new wines and start-ups within that realm. Yesterday, I stumbled upon the Miracle Machine.

Almost two weeks ago, two wine industry mavens began marketing a home appliance they called “The Miracle Machine.” This machine will use concentrates, flavor packets and an various electrical sensors, transducers, heaters and pumps to make wine quickly and easily in your home.screen shot 2014-03-01 at 11.19.32 am

Thanks to NPR, I discovered that this machine isn’t as awesome as it sounds.  From NPR’s Water-To-Wine Machine Sound Too Good To Be True? Is It article, I found out this, “So we pushed and prodded and, guess what? We can now exclusively report the whole thing was a sham. Turns out, the Miracle Machine was a marketing ploy cooked up (or perhaps “fermented” would be a better word?) by, a public relations company, to promote their pro bono client of the year.”

All-in-all the machine is still in the funding stage and its inventors will soon launch a Kickstarter page to raise money. Along with the machine, the company is planning to offer all ingredients needed to create different types of wine through its website.

If you are interested in learning more about the product visit their website. Also note that the Miracle Machine is set to retail for about $500, but with bundled ingredients at only $2 a pack, it might just be worth it.

games & brews

a review of DC’s Board Room

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

After a long day or week at work I am often finding myself wanting to unwind with my friends. I want to hear about their weeks, relax, indulge and libations. Mostly, I just am looking to shoot the shit with my crew, as I am sure you are.

My first impression and instant was right with The Board Room. This place looks airy and open. From anywhere in the bar you hear laughing roaring and can tell everyone is having a great time.  As the concept is, you rent board games while you drink—how can you not have a laugh or two among friends?

The selection of board games for rent is wonderful. As for the games you have to pay to rent these. The games cost up to $5.00 rent and you will need to provide your ID as collateral to assure that you return the game. Their selection ranges from Mystery Date to Settlers of Catan to Cards Against Humanity to Sorry, in my book these are all classics.

My one qualm with this place is the seating. It is not well managed and essentially a free-for-all. It’s not uncommon to see with several tables without chairs. Though you should know that  you can reserve space for your larger party and you can reserve space for your smaller party at non-peak times (Peak = Thurs/Fri after 7 pm and Sat after 9 pm). With this option it makes things a lot less stressful.

Bottom line is: Board games + libations + friends = a perfect night. This is a perfect place to go that is out of the ordinary. This place isn’t the typical drink-dance-embarrass oneself routine.

Take a peek at the Board Room’s Drink List
Drafts – Glass/Pitcher

Miller Lite(Milwaukee, WI, 4.17% abv) — $4.50/$14.540
Miller High Life (Milwaukee, WI, 5.0% abv) — $3/$10
Yuengling Lager (Pottsville, PA, 4.4% abv) — $5/$16
Guinness Stout (Dublin, Ireland, 4.2% abv) — $7/ no pitchers
Magic Hat #9 (Burlington, VT, 5.1% abv) — $5.50/$17.50
Stella Artois (Leuven, Belgium, 5% abv) — $6.50/$20.50
DC Brau Public Pale Ale (Washington, DC, 6% abv) — $6/$19
Devils Backbone Vienna Lager (Roseland, VA, 4.9% abv) — $6/$19`
Racer 5 IPA (Healdsburg, CA, 7% abv) — $7/$22
Shiner Bock (Shiner, TX, 4.4% abv) — $5.50/$17.50
Dogfish Head 60 Min IPA (Milton, DE, 6% abv) – $6.50/$20.50
Sierra Celebration (Chico, CA, 6.8% abv) — $6.60/$20.5
Sam Adams Boston Lager(Boston, MA, 4.9% abv) — $5/$15
312 Goose Island Wheat (Chicago, IL, 5.3% abv) — $5.50/$17.50
Strongbow Cider (Hereford, UK, 5% abv) — $6.50/$20.50
Firestone Walker Union Jack IPA (Paso Robles, CA, 7.5% abv) — $7/$22
Abita Turbodog Brown Ale (Abita Springs, LA, 5.6% abv) — $5.50/$17.50
Starr Hill Northern Lights IPA (Charlottesville, VA, 6.5% abv) — $6/$19
Ommegang Witte (Cooperstown, NY, 7.7% abv) — $6.50/$20.50
Devils Backbone Kilt Flasher Scotch Ale (Roseland, VA, 7.8% abv) $6/$19
Firestone Walker’s Reserve Porter (Paso Robles, CA, 5.9% abv) — $7/$22

Bottles/Cans

National Bohemian (Baltimore, MD, 4.28%abv) — $3 (12 oz can)
Miller Lite (Milwaukee, WI, 4.2% abv) — $4.50 (12 oz bottle)
Bud Light (St Louis, MO, 4.2% abv) — $4.50 (12 oz bottle)
Budweiser (St Louis, MO, 5.0% abv) — $4.5o (12 oz bottle)
Tecate (Mexico, 4.5% abv) — $5 (12 oz can)
Red Hook Longhammer IPA (Portsmouth, NH, 6.2% abv) — $5 (12 oz can)
Fat Tire (Ft Collins, CO, 5.2% abv) — $6 (12 oz can)
Heineken (Holland, 5% abv) — $6 (16 oz can)
Brunehaut Belgian Blonde (Gluten Free) (Brunehaut, Belgium, 6.5% abv) $8.50 (11.2 oz bottle)
St Martin Belgian Tripel (Brunehaut, Belgium, 9%abv) –$21 (25.4 oz bottle)

Handcrafted Cocktails

The Icebreaker $8
House crafted Hibiscus soda, Stolichnaya, a splash of St. Germaine and a lime
The Clyde $8
Stolichnaya Orange Vodka, Cointreau, Hand-squeezed orange to order, club soda and a lime
The Bionic Woman $8
Ciroc Coconut, caffeinated mango water, and a lime
The Board Room Manhattan $11
Bulleit Rye, Noilly-Pratt sweet vermouth, Regan’s orange bitters and a maraschino
Dark ‘n Stormy $8
Goslings ginger beer, goslings black seal rum, and a lime. Make it a Light n’ Stormy with diet ginger beer
Adult Cherry Cola $8
House crafted old-fashioned cola, Stolichnaya Wild Cherry and a lime

Whites

Domaine De Gournier Viognier (France) House, No Oak, Session Wine — $5.50/glass
Zonin Prosecco (Italy) Bubbly — $7/glass
Hess Chardonnay Silver Label (Napa) Tropical — $7/glass
Crossings Sauvignon Blanc (New Zealand) Crisp — $9/glass
Ruffino Pinot Grigio (Italy) Clean & Citrusy — $7/glass
Sonoma Cutrer Chardonnay (Sonoma) Apple-y — $45/bottle
Piper Sonoma (Sonoma) Crisp & Bright — $36/bottle
Veuve Cliquot (France) Fancy & Special Occasion Bubbles — $110/bottle

Reds

Le Clos (France) House — $5.50/glass
Montes Merlot (Chile) Merloty! — $7/glass
Kenwood Russian River Valley Pinot Noir (Sonoma) Jammy — $11/glass
Kaiken Malbec Reserve (Argentina) Warm &Plummy –$9/glass
Joseph Carr Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa) Meium body & Black Currant — $12/glass
Diseno Mendoza Malbec (Argentina) Complex & Fruity — $7/glass
Girard Artistry Red Blend (Napa) –$60/bottle
Laetitia Pinot Noir (California) Rich, Red & Crisp — $45/bottle

kapnos

it’s all Greek to me

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Chef Mike Isabella, Top Chef, opened Kapnos yet another resultant in July 2013. His newest restaurant draws inspiration from Northern Greece and he brings it to the Fourteenth Street Corridor, in Washington, DC. in July 2013.

Kapnos is Greek for “smoke,” which just happens to be the first aroma to greet you as you begin your dining experience. The rustic feel and open kitchen make you feel right at home. This cozy restaurant is a treat for all.  Imagine, two wood-fire grills with rotating spits and a large oven for stone-baked flat breads. Guests can enjoy carvings from whole animals that have been spit-roasted all day, including: lamb, goat, duck, chicken, and suckling pig, there is really nothing you can go wrong with when ordering off this menu.

For a celebratory Tuesday night, this place was packed by 8 PM. We made a reservation for dinner (7:15 PM). photo 2People were mingling at the bar, and a few folks were already seated. Our waiter was tentative and made fantastic suggestions. He also picked up on our conversations and gave witty remarks. As a birthday was our purpose for Kapnos on a Tuesday night, I was very pleased with the atmosphere, food and libations. Without a doubt I will be back to Kapnos to try a few more things on the menu.

Kapnos is unlike any Greek restaurant I’ve ever been to, but in a good way.

My recommendations

tyrokafteri  feta, smoked manori, grains of paradise
lamb tartare green chickpeas, tahini, mint
charred brussels  white anchovy, black garlic, kalamata, red pepper
potato garlic  sunny duck egg, red pepper-almond puree

photo 1

the epitome of a crafternoon

sipping & painting

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Four and a half years ago I made one of the best decisions of my life: rushing a sorority. Upon rushing, I didn’t hold Greeks to a high regard, nor did I understand what being Greek was all about, and worst of all I judged, classified, and stereotyped all of them. Not until my sister invited me down for family weekend with her sorority (Chi Omega) I didn’t get it. I didn’t understand why you would essentially “pay for your friends”. After that picnic and family outing something clicked, soon after I learned that my Orientation Leader in college was Greek and she was a Deepher.

Four and a half years ago, I rushed Delta Phi Epsilon, and it was the best decision I’ve ever made. Since graduating college and being on my own, I was worried that I would lose my DPhiE roots. I made it a priority that I wouldn’t cut those ties. Being Greek isn’t about four years, it’s for life, and frankly it really bothers me when people now will say oh, I was a so-and-so…no, just because you’re not an active doesn’t mean you are not a part of that organization. You most certainly are. I forever and always will be a Deepher.

With all of that being said, yesterday was a perfect day with my DPhiE alumnae sisters. A year and a half ago I co-founded the Delta Phi Epsilon DC Area Alumnae Association, and I couldn’t be more thrilled with the outcome so far. Yesterday, was a lovelycrafts afternoon spent doing something new and something old. We put together our DPhiE past with the present. We crafted, we drank, we reminisced and laughed.  Having the opportunity to meet and connect with such awesome women is something I will always be forever grateful for. These women truly brighten my day yesterday and really helped me out when I was in a funk.

Crafting is one of the most enjoyable things, it’s such a great stress reviler, and not to mention it’s a creative outlet! A crafternoon with champagne and wine glasses, was an awesome treat! Sure we don’t get together all the time, but when we do, you better believe we are going to have a great time and not let a moment pass us by!

As it’s been said buniefore: “People ask why I am in a sorority and I try to explain all the things a sorority is that they cannot see. A sorority is more than letters on a sweatshirt, I say. More than traditional songs, a gold pin, rituals, and obligation, or a way of life. A sorority is learning about people, a sorority is giving without expecting a return. A sorority is earning respect from others, as well as for yourself. A sorority will not solve all your problems. But I have made good friends and found confidence there to help me take life one step at a time.” And you know what all of this just goes to show,  you get what you put in– so maybe it’s true, maybe “paying for your friends” gets you those awesome gems and diamonds in the ruff that you wouldn’t have found otherwise.

My heΔrt. My sφul. My lifE. #ΔφΕ

the chesapeake bay

my much needed visit to the bay

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Wide-eyed and bushy tailed, Pat and I decided to head off to the Chesapeake Bay on Saturday. After a few minor glitches in the beginning, we were off. Heading from DC down to North Beach, MD was a treat. It’s always nice to get out of the city with your close friends–even if it is for a few hours. Pat makes the long-40 minute drive- to the Bay frequently. Each trip always has a purpose. The trip this time was for Kettle Corn, the Olde Bay Tavern, and a little serenity on the Boardwalk.

North Beach is gently nestled on the western shore line of the Bay in Calvert Country. With, I’m sure, a unique past, this town brings diverse activities for both locals and tourists to enjoy. A little Southern charm and a slow-down it is a perfect town that is pedestrian-friendly and has many store fronts and restaurants within walking distance.

A stroll on the boardwalk was exactly what the Doctor ordered. Heading down the strip we were on our way to lunch at the Olde Bay Tavern, which we discovered recently closed. RIP Olde Bay Tavern. Finding a new place, Abner’s was a treat in itself. An excellent waitress, Bonnie, helped us through our crab lunch and made it a true homey experience. Finally, we stopped into the Kettle Corn shop. Whatever flavor you have a hankering for, sweet, savory, salty a mix of all three– they have it here. It’s the best kettle corn I have ever tasted. Though the shop was practically empty when we arrived, we manged to make it out with some kettle corn, of course after sampling a few new treats as well. I made it out with a S’more flavor and the standard whereas Pat made it out with Birthday Cake (chocolate and vanilla). Honestly, these flavors are true. I actually feel like I am eating a S’more when I’m chomping down on this kettle corn.

Next up: The Shops. While the adventure continued we stopped into various different shops. First stopping in a local place that sells artwork, jewelry and a few items of clothing, mind you they are made from bamboo the owner of the store welcomed us with open arms. She told us about her days on Capitol Hill and where we should be traveling to next, the Antique shop and then to the Wine Bar. Honestly, I am all about wine and antiques so this was a perfect fit. Trying new things, is something I am passionate about. As the Shins and Drake say: YOLO, so why not and after all we’re on an adventure, “yes” is the key word of the day. Needless to say, I wanted to buy everything in the antique store, I didn’t; however, the Wine Bar was a little different. After sampling six new wines Pat was sold and bought two bottles of a Line 39’s Petite Sirah. Both bold and flavorful, you couldn’t go wrong with this option. I, on the othe686059792_EnDQp-Mr hand, went a totally different route. As the owner told me “I had two very bold choices” I went off the deep end and bought them: Liquid Geography and Opici Bianco. The Liquid Geography is a rose and all of the profits go to charity, that’s why I bought that. And the Opici Bianco, a true product of Italy, honestly I bought it because of the bottle.

With a few bold decisions, a great friend and a little adventure, this day at the Bay was exactly what the doctor ordered. The adventure went a little off schedule and a little unplanned, but that doesn’t mean we didn’t have fun! I would suggest heading to the Bay. North Beach, MD was spectacular find. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.