Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Movie Reviews: Wall Street, Shrek 2, Edward Scissorshands, Big Fish, Day After Tomorrow

  • Wall Street
    [My Rating, 7] This was a decent and entertaining movie. It was nice to see Martin and Charlie Sheen together in a movie. Micael Douglas was excellent in his role.
  • Shrek 2
    [My Rating, 9] A very funny movie and one we likes a lot. Of course the Donkey steals the show. I still like him better than "Puss". My favorite scene was when the giant ginger bread man attacks a Starbucks, I mean a Farbucks, and the customers run out and across the street, to another Farbucks.
  • Edward Scissorshands
    [My Rating, 10] Yes, a ten! This is one of my favorite movies of all time. It is a wonderful story and a romantic movie. Last night was the first time Susie and I saw it together.
  • Big Fish
    [My Rating, 9] A really good story about love, families and a man whose stories are bigger than life. To me there is a lot about human nature and the unavoidable (and not dishonest) way we all tell stories and remember things in ways that embellish the facts and present events in ways that reflect our personalities as much as historic events.
  • Day After Tomorrow
    [My Rating, 8] We liked this movie a lot more than I thought we would. I know, there is a lot of scientifically inaccurate information here, but it makes for great entertainment and there is enough truth about global warming to give us pause.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Wine Review: Zinfandel: Castoro Cellars, 2001 Cobble Creek, Estate

Wine Review: Zinfandel: 2001 Castoro Cellars Cobble Creek, Estate, Paso Robles, CA. [My Rating, 9] Yes, I like it that much! Two gold medals Very nice. A bit fruity but not odjectionably so. I like this. This, in my opinion, is the best Zin from a place that grows very good Zins! Their Cobble Creek Vineyard is right outside their Paso Robles tasting room. Notes for the 2002 Vintage:

This wine is from vineyards that surround Niels and Bimmer Udsen's home and the tasting room. All the grapes are grown in the traditional head pruned style with limited production. These grapes are grown to produce wines of distinction with deep color and flavor extraction. We are noticing that this vineyard tends to exhibit great raspberry fruit notes. As you enjoy the bouquet take notice of the elegant fruit and ripe plum aromas coupled with the spiciness characteristic of rich Zinfandels. Enjoy this limited bottling now or hold some to compare with future vintages.

This is the wine they served at their winemaker's dinner! Great wine!

Monday, December 20, 2004

Wine Reviews: 1999 Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains, Estate, organically grown

1999 Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains, Estate, organically grown, Gold Medal Winner and Highest Point Score of all entries Santa Cruz Mountains 2002 Commercial Wine Competition Wine Club. From a little boutique winery in the Santa Cruz Mountains located near Summit Road, this winery has a tasting room in Monterey on Cannery Row. We bought a case of this wine during Passport Days in the Fall of 2004. One bottle had to be thrown away due to taint.

[My Rating, 7] Nice, and a pleasant wine to drink. I liked it a lot when we got it. But, the more I drink it the less I like it. It has that flavor that Chards have when they are still good and drinkable, but to me past their prime. Maybe in 2002 it was in its prime, but in my opinion, not now.

Book Review: Air Battle Force

Brown, Dale (2003). Air Battle Force. New York: Harper Collins. (ISBN 0-06-009409-5)

[My Rating, 7] I am sure Brown is a nice guy and this is a decent read if you like this kind of stuff. The characters are kind of one dimensional and, in my opinion lack depth. The plot is pretty predictable and a stretch to make believable. Reading this is kind of like watching an old cowboy movie where the bad guys are all lousy shots. However, it is a good way to escape without having to think very much!

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Wine Reviews: Burrell Chardonnay and Castoro Syrah

Syrah, Castoro Cellars, 2001 Reserve, Paso Robles
[My Rating, 8] Nice nose and a pleasant wine to drink on a relaxing evening. It is a delicate subtle wine with a hint of vanilla and finishes well.

Chardonnay, Burrell School, 2001, Estate Reserve, Santa Cruz Mountains
[My Rating, 8] Really nice mellow wine. Easy to drink, pleasant, not too oaky or sweet. Grapes were grown right off Summit Road. A good wine! Purchased during passport days 2004.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Movie Review: Bridget Jones, The Edge of Reason (2004)

Susie and I really enjoyed this movie. It was fun, light hearted and romantic. The movie was panned by most critics. However, we do not often agree with most critics. For example, a lot of critics like the Kill Bill movies, we do not! If you like fun and lightly romantic movies, you should like Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason. We did.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004


Pixel with hair up

This season is just too crazy, too intense, too much to do, too busy, too stressful and too much work!

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Congress to hear case regarding wine sale

Article I, Section 8, Clause 3 of the United States Constitution empowers the United States Congress "To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes".
No matter what you say about states rights, no matter what your concerns about local businesses being impacted by either on-line, catalog or phone sales, states do not have the right to regulate interstate commerce.
Why are boutique wineries being punished because states want to control interstate commerce? Because, in my opinion, they can get away with it!
I have got a feeling that there is more of a threat to local tax bases and local businesses from Amazon and other e-tailers (not to mention catalog sales) than there is from wineries.
To me the laws, as they exist now, are about interstate commerce and not about controlling the sale of alcohol.
I live in CA and my desire to be able to have wine shipped from my NY brother-in-law to his CA sister (no sale involved) is due to a CA “reciprocity” law not a NY law. I am a CA constituent, not a NY one. CA may be trying to pressure other states to allow CA wines to shipped to other states by banning wineries in states that ban CA wine shipments from shipping to CA, but again that is a trade policy and that, I believe, violates the commerce clause.
If states want to ban any and all alcohol shipments, including same state shipments, I think they arguably have the right to do so under the 21st amendment, but as soon as they discriminate, as soon as they start to favor and allow their own in state wineries to ship and not out of state wineries, as soon as they change the playing field to favor their own alcohol shippers (and that includes laws of reciprocity,) as soon as they allow some shipments and not others; I believe they are interfering with interstate commerce and I believe only the feds can do that.