Posts Tagged ‘Miles Davis


Miles Davis from The Complete Jack Johnson Sessions (Printable High-Res (300 dpi), 8.5″ x 11″)

Miles Davis – Jack Johnson 8_5x11_flat

Click the image to make it bigger, and then download it. It prints well.//


in pursuit of the juiciest wine: day 101 (Educated Guess Cabernet Sauvignon 2009)

It’s been too long since I’ve done one of these tastings, but that’s what happens when you have a full-time plus teaching Introduction to Creative Writing at the state college, which takes another 15-20 hours of prep work for a three-hour class.  Work, school, students, girlfriend, dog, food, sleep. Ug. It’s overwhelming.

Educated Guess Cabernet Sauvignon 2009

Click the image to make it bigger so you can read it.

Ok. enough whining. On to the wine.

Actually, I’m going to do an experiment. The next Introduction to Creative Class will be on poetry. It will be the first poetry class. In this class I plan to focus on abstractions and images. Why do young writers have such a hard time distinguishing between the two? I know I did. Why do young writers try to write poetically instead of just writing? I know I did. Anyway. This review will be like two reviews. One review will try to describe the wine with abstractions. And the other will try to describe the wine with some images and concrete stuff.

Tonight’s wine is Educated Guess Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 from Napa Valley. I got it for two reasons. The first was the label. The second was that someone or someplace gave it 89 points. Had I not seen that rating, I would have backed away. But here we are. Hop on board.

But first to get us in the proper mood – Oliver Nelson’s “Stolen Moments” from Blues and the Abstract Truth:

Abstract noseNow for the descriptions.

New rules. I’ll describe the wine with abstractions, and the girlfriend will describe with images.

Abstract Color: It’s the color of a newborn’s thought when seeing fall for the first time. Hmm. There are two images in there. It’s the color of an interpretation.

Concrete Color: A dark plumy color with some red.

Abstract Nose: The nose smells like the middle of the solar system. Near the asteroid belt. Hmm. No. That’s too many images. It smells like the berries of time. Ah. There we go. No. There’s still berries. It smells like the dark times before the eruption of change. It smells like a sad smile before a birthday. Ha ha!

Concrete Nose: It’s a little cranberry-like with some spices and perhaps some nutmeg. She says it smells like Christmas spices. And that it smells dry.

Abstract Taste: It tastes like prehistoric earth just after the lava cooled. It tastes like the steam rising from the lava. No. Those are images, too. It tastes dry. It tastes like red. It tastes like the edge of death but in a good way. It tastes like the last words of a famous painter. It tastes like a Paris tavern in the 1920s with Hemingway at a table writing and staring at a woman he wants to put into a story. Damn. All images. Arg. It tastes like the edge or certainty and the corner of joy.

Concrete Taste: It tastes alcoholic. It’s juicy. It’s like biting in currant berry that explodes in your mouth. It started interesting but became boring and unnoteworthy. (Ha. There’s the abstractions!)

I agree. It start off with some gusto. It has some talent. It’s like a boxing match. Talent, fine clothes, and experience vs. youth, impetuousness, and rags. It’s trying to be a real good wine, but behind it, perhaps the abundance of alcohol, there’s a thin layer of cheapness.

I’d say 88 points.

But you know, as the boxing match goes on, the young, cheap fighter is starting to falter. He’s fallen to the mat a couple of times. Talent and experience are winning out. The first rounds it came out strong, stumble a bit in the middle rounds, but is finishing the match strong. I give 89 points.

Most important. This wine taught me that it’s best to describe a wine with both concrete and abstract terms. A good poem does that, too, but the abstractions aren’t the dominant. They just appear every now and then like Miles Davis trumpet in songs from his later years.//


in pursuit of the juiciest wine: day sixty-five (Hacienda Molleda Garnacha 2006)

Things feel good today and this evening because I now own Miles Davis The Complete On the Corner Sessions and The Cellar Door Sessions. I’m so happy to have these. I haven’t read the articles that I linked to, but I want and need to. Nonetheless, the albums are awesome. 14 hours of awesome. Awesome. Awesome.

Hacienda Molleda Garnacha 2006I have heard the Hacienda Molleda Garnacha 2006 is also awesome. The Wine Advocate (Robert Parker) gave it 91 points.

But a note on the bottle. I like the slanted oval label, and I really appreciate the back label information. It tells about you the grape, about the vine, the location, the soil, the climate, and who the importer is. Oh, heck. I’ll just type it up for you to read.

GRAPE 100% Garnacha

THE VINE Garnacha (aka Grenache), a grape of southern Spanish origin, is a variety requiring a long, warm, growing season to fully ripen. Cariñena’s arid and windy conditions, along with hot days during the growing season, suits the Garnacha grape, producing fresh, intensive well-balanced wines.

LOCATION Zone 4, south of Zaragoza city. These vines are located at the highest altitude area in Cariñena region at 2,461 ft.

SOIL There are 3 different types of soil plots: River Stones, Clay, and Limestone. River Stones provide a warmer/drier environment, allowing for healthier level of ripeness. Clay retains water, preventing the vine from shutting down during dry years; and Limestone limits the nutrient intake of the vine, resulting in brighter, more intense flavors.

CLIMATE Continental Mediterranean, hot days and cold night, with average temperartures fo 63° F between April and October. Rainfall is very low at 14 in. yearly.


OLE GRID 2- 1 1/2 – 4

I like that information, thought I don’t know what that last line means. Hopefully, it’s code for awesome wine. I want to retain this feeling of awesome. I hope Molleda somehow means awesome. It actually means: “Molleda is one of seven parishes (administrative divisions) in the Corvera de Asturias municipality, within the province and autonomous community of Asturias, in northern Spain.”) Somehow I think it also associates with alpha somewhere, somehow. And alpha is awesome!

Enough. Let’s get to the damned wine.

It’s musky and earthy. I should have expected that from a wine Robert Parker likes. I’m not picking up much fruit. Maybe some dark figs, if such a thing exists. My girlfriend gets salami. I get something pungent, too.

I get green peppercorns, plums, cherries, and vanilla. It’s quite tasty, but a Garnacha needs to be juicier than this. It’s a little dry for a Garnacha. Maybe it needs more time to open. It’s still good, and I’m sure it will go good with the portabello pierogies and heirloom tomato sauce.

I don’t think this wine is 91 points. It’s like 89 points.//


in pursuit of the juiciest wine: day fifty-four

Miles DavisAlright. I’m in a good mood. A jazzy mood. A fusion jazzy mood. A Miles Davis mood. I love, love, love Miles Davis to no end, especially his fusion jazz. The Complete Jack Johnson Sessions (would someone get this for me please. Here’s a link: Thank you. All I have is the one cd version of the LP. Only two songs.), Bitches Brew, Live-Evil, Dark Magus, On the Corner (I’d love to have the Complete On the Corner Sessions, too. I’ve only got the one cd version. Here’ s a link:, . . . . The non-fusion: In a Silent Way is just, just the best. “Shhh/Peaceful” blows me away. Everything Miles is Good. Sketches of Spain is not jazz, but it is tremendous. (Isn’t that piece made for a guitar? but when Miles plays it, it’s for the trumpet.) Everything Miles is good or great, except for Tutu. I’ve been listening to Miles a lot lately. (I have about 2 1/2 feet of Miles Davis cds.) He gets me through work. The day. He’s almost as good as my girlfriend. My girlfriend is limitless.

Besides Miles making me smiles, I got a cool gizmo that allows me to play my iPod in the car. I plug one end of the gizmo into the cigarette lighter and the other end into the bottom of the iPod, find an unused radio station, and boom I can listen to Miles over the car speakers. It’s really amazing.

And then I finally got some good speakers for the computer, because the computer is where I’m listening to most of my music these days, and my stereo is ancient. My beautiful three-foot speakers, which used to play loud and beautiful, can’t go over 2 1/2 now. The CD player is crippled. The receiver is from the early 90s. It works fine. But as I said, the desk is where I listen to my music. But these speakers plus a 42W subwoofer . . . . It has so much bass that I have to turn the bass volume to almost zero. It’s so overwhelming otherwise. Bonus: the speakers fill the 50′ x 30′ x 14′ apartment quite well. Quite well indeed. Bitches Brew sounds *amazing*.

I’m starting to think this post should be called The Miles, Music, and Wine post. So let’s get to the wine.


Paso Creek Cabernet Sauvignon 2006The California Cabernet Sauvignon extended mini tour continues with Paso Creek Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 from Paso Robles, California.

I busted the light bulb a little bit ago, so I can’t quite tell how dark this wine is. Okay, I walked over to a lighted place. It’s like 97% opaque. Unfortunately, there are some cork crumbs floating on the surface. It’ll be a fusion of cork and wine. Sigh. That’s not the fusion I like.

The wine is fruity on the nose, but I also get berries like cranberries and cherries. Is cherry a berry? It rhymes with berry, so a cherry, logically and therefore, must be, ipso facto, a berry, of course, of course. There is also some coffee back there. Java Estate. Light-medium roasted Java Estate. When I inhale deeply, I can see the beans light brown color and smooth surface. Such a beautiful bean.

The Paso Creek is quite smooth on the palate. It’s not very dry. I can let it sit in mouth for, well, for indefinitely if I had to because it sits well on the tongue. But even in its sitting, I don’t get the typical Cabernet Sauvignon dryness. But I do get plums and some juicy fruit – juicy for a cab, that is.

The finish has just a hint of tartness, but not much else.

I’m really enjoying this, despite the cork crumbs.

This is straight up pleasant. It’s worth the $15. If it were less expensive, it would be a really good everyday wine.

Oh, so points. Points, points, points. I got 88 of them for this one. I recommend it for casual drinking. You know, for a casual party.//

The Cave (Winner of The Bitter Oleander Press Library of Poetry Book Award for 2013.)

The Cave

Poems for an Empty Church

Poems for an Empty Church

The Oldest Stone in the World

The Oldest Stone in the Wolrd

Henri, Sophie, & The Hieratic Head of Ezra Pound: Poems Blasted from the Vortex

Henri, Sophie, & The Hieratic Head of Ezra Pound: Poems Blasted from the Vortex

Pre-Dew Poems

Pre-Dew Poems

Negative Time

Negative Time

After Malagueña

After Malagueña

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