Last night, we attended our fourth (is that right?) Wines of the World dinner at Coronado Center. The theme country for the night was Portugal. After beginning with a far-too-sweet-for-my-taste port, the wines ramped up in interest and quality. Two vinho verde wines, both inexpensive, were very nice; dry, crisp, and clean. The first, Salvador Lago Vibrant & Aromatic Vinho Verde, was cheapest, at $8.50, but quite good. The next, only around $10 or $11, was Portal da Calçada Reserva Vinho Verde 2015; while I probably couldn’t tell them apart in a blind taste test, I think I allowed myself to like the latter wine a tad better, perhaps because of the price. The next red wine was Prazo de Roriz Douro, 2013. It was quite good, but also considerably more expensive (by my standards, not by the standards of people who can better differentiate and appreciate wines).
The food served as an excuse to drink the wine were interesting. We started with an amuse bouche of a bacon-wrapped date, accompanied by two olives. Then, we had an interesting and quite flavorful potato soup (accompanied by garlic bread), followed by an interesting Cornish game hen served with more potatoes. We finished with an interesting dessert cake, which was best when the last port of the evening was poured over it.
During dinner, I talked with a guy who, I learned, is a writer and intends to join the Village Writers’ Club. He’s an interesting guy, a retired architect, who spent eleven years, off and on, in Japan. He’s interested in writing short fiction for his own amusement and has done a bit of writing. He said he attended L’Audible Art and claimed to have appreciated my reading. Inasmuch as something I’m writing includes an important Japanese connection, I asked him if he’d be willing to read some of it when it’s far enough along, with the objective of determining whether my writing captures (or, conversely, tortures) the culture appropriately. He said he’d be glad to. We didn’t talk politics, but I’m guessing the guy may be fairly progressive. He mentioned having felt, at some point during an exchange while in Japan, embarrassed at being an American, due to the American motivations for entering and staying involved in the Vietnam War. I learned that he studied under E. Fay Jones, the famous Arkansas architect whose work is visible in and around Hot Springs Village, Hot Springs, Eureka Springs, and so on. And he mentioned having intended to have built a house in Hot Springs Village (in a more modern style) until he learned the cost of new construction versus existing homes. I, too, had hoped to build here (a modernist style home), until I discovered the costs.
So, all in all, I’d say the evening was a great success. I was reasonably happy with the wine and food and was glad to have engaged in conversation with a fellow writer who, perhaps, might become part of the entourage of writers I’ve been hoping would develop here. As that entourage stands, Maddie and Myra and Millie form the core, with Judy and JoAnne being good prospects; and, now, it’s possible that Paul might one day join the crowd.