Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Family Visit

My brother Henry Hall (Hank to the rest of the world) and his wife Ann arrived from Kentucky Saturday afternoon.  I love to have them visit.  We have so much fun and wine.  What follows is a little view into our fun so far.

We have eaten really well.

Marty gathering spices for the rub for pulled pork.

Rolling the pork butts in the spices.  Then they were wrapped in the plastic and set for a while.  Then they are slow cooked for nearly 24 hours.

The cooked meat being pulled, my job.  It was so yummy.
The weather is awful, record breaking heat.  We decide to go wine tasting and vodka tasting, cause we all know alcohol is so cooling, not. 
We head for Alameda an island city that will be cooler.  Also where the distillery and tasting rooms are.  First we taste at St. George Spirits.   We tasted lots of their products.

This is a flavor infused vodka, Buddha's hand.  Really yummy.
This is Absinthe which for close to a 100 years was banned in the USA.  It had a very bad reputation, addictive, could kill you, all kinds of bad stuff.  Not true.  It pours clear has a nice flavor, not my favorite though.  Then staff poured again and added ice . . .
it thickens and has a chemical change.  Very fun.
He then said he was going to pour their Bourbon and he was scared to have 4 Kentuckians taste.  He knew we expected more than the average public.

This is just a little fuzzy.  It is as if the camera knew how I was seeing the world at that point.  I am not a heavy drinker and a good tasting can give me a buzz.  We all 4 were amazed with how excellent this Bourbon is.  Marty compared it to Knob Creek.  For non Bourbon drinkers that is a high end Bourbon.
Then we were off to the wine tastings room.  First stop Rock Wall.  They have some nice wines and a beautiful facility.  We had a good time tasting and then had some appetizers sans alcohol so we could legally drive to the next tasting room.

This is what we saw as we were eating:  San Francisco and on the right the port of Oakland.  A huge container ship was coming in to be unloaded as another one was going out to sea.  From here we went to another wine tasting room.  Then home for grilled tritip.
Monday I went in to the Marriage Factory.  It was the first full day of being able to do same sex marriages.  They needed extra help.  Well they wasn't true.  BART (our major transportation system in the Bay Area) went out on strike.  The highways were at gridlock.  A normal drive of 45 minutes was taking 2 1/2 hours or more.  People could not get to us to be married.  ( Marty knows ways to get there that the rest of the world doesn't know) I was there but few were there to be married.  Disappointing for me, but things don't always go as planned.

This is Joe our guest blogger.  All dressed up and very little business.  He wants you to know that is not a clip on bow tie.  I saw him tie it.  It is real.  We told him he really looks distinguished.  He did more weddings than I did.  He speaks Spanish so does double duty. 
I was there from 8:10 until a little after 2:00 and only did 2 weddings ( recap another blog).  Marty, Henry, and Ann picked me up and we went to an Oakland institution.
Fenton's.   Can you say Hot Fudge Sundae?  This is a small.
Henry Hall is savoring the flavor.  We loved loved the sundaes. 


We are eating very well, went out for Vietnamese last night, wonderful!  Then some chocolate and wine.  Today the adventure continues, as does the heat wave.  At least at night the Bay breeze come in and we sleep under a blanket.  Stay tuned.

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