I thought I would try something new this year and do a recap of the best things about 2011. Here goes:
Best wine: Seyval Blanc from Valentino Vineyard
I am normally a red wine person, and I did have some fantastic wines this year. The beaujolais nouveau bottles I got from Just Grapes and Pastoral were really great, as were the pinot noirs I got at Vie and Mercat a la Planxa. But this wine was really surprising. It was fantastically crisp with wonderful apple flavors, and I definitely wish I could have tried more than just the tasting glass I had. It was wonderful.
Best beer: Sierra Nevada Kellerweis
I had this one at the Dairy State Beer and Cheese Festival in April. I usually do not like Sierra Nevada, but this one was fantastic. Other good runners-up from this year were the New Glarus Imperial Weizen, New Glarus Chocolate Abbey, and the Five Rabbits Holiday Ale (a hibiscus golden ale).
Best cheese: Rush Creek Reserve from Uplands Cheese
I loved this last year and I loved it again this year. It's a wonderful little soft rind cheese that you pretty much just scoop right out and eat as an appetizer or a meal. I put out a platter of apples, Triscuits, homemade apple paste, chutneys, and walnuts, and we just ate this thing for dinner. Wonderful.
Best meal: Girl and the Goat
We went here for our anniversary, and it was probably the best meal I had all year. It would have some fierce competition from The Publican and Pastis in New York City, but the Girl and the Goat was just so satisfying and wonderful. We're going there to celebrate New Year's Eve, so I guess that's the only thing that could still top our anniversary dinner before the end of the year.
Best new yarn: Amazing by Lion Brand
I know, I'm sure I should list some really expensive, really obscure yarn here, but this was just really good yarn to work with. I made a sweater in Arcadia, glovelets in Aurora and Glacier Bay, and a hat and glove set also in Glacier Bay.
Best canned recipe: strawberry red currant jam
This might be one of the best things that has ever come out of my kitchen, period.
Best new album: Helplessness Blues by the Fleet Foxes
This album is ethereal and wonderful. I'm still not sure whether I like it better than their first, self-titled album, but it was wonderful all the same.
If anyone can think of more categories, I'll fill them in, but my dinner is almost done and I'm reaching my creativity limit for tonight. Bis spaeter!
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