PetersonGran2Some days ago we experienced a couple of snow days in the plains states. Schools, government and business closed as a blizzard settled into my small town. As a teacher, snow days are something very special. One whole day without plans. They aren’t like other days off, full of errands and activities. A snow day is free.

Snow day food is different, too; perhaps a day of snacking, or a slow, Sunday style meal, prepared on a Thursday. This snow day included a hearty beef stew. I had about six pounds of trimmed rump roast, carrots, onion, garlic, tomatoes (fire roasted, sun dried and paste), and button mushrooms. I also found a few springs of fresh thyme and a jar of crushed hot paprika chilies. There was also red wine.

It has been a busy few weeks and my recent wine club box sat unopened next to the wine rack. I hauled it to the living room and sat on the floor exploring each bottle. It was like the adult version of lining up Hot Wheel cars or Barbie dolls. I settled on the Peterson Il Granaio and what a great choice it was. The richness of the stew complemented the sweetness of the wine in a way that lifted both the beef and the cherry flavors. The heat from those preserved chilies lifted the wine for an amazing compliment. My only regret is that I used a cup of the wine in the preparation of the stew and that was two less glasses to drink. I’m going to drink this wine a lot in the future; particularly with a hearty dish that finishes with a kick.