Tuesday I grilled some salmon, made a kind of hashbrowny dish from potato pulp leftover from a potato skin recipe, and put out some assorted leftover greens along with the 2010 Cowan Cellars ďBennet ValleyĒ Pinot Noir. This has calmed down nicely compared to a slightly screechy bottle last year.Plenty of fruit, acidity in balance, some tannin, better with air. No hurry on these. B+/B

Wednesday was chicken apple sausages, caprese, and assorted leftovers; winewas the
1995 Falesco ďMontianoĒ (Lazio). Iím not really a fan of international (French) varieties in Italy, and Iíve been known to make disparaging comments re jetset winemakers like the Cotarellas. Yet I must confess Iíve always found myself enjoying the Montiano (the Marciliano, not so much).
So when a big lot (Ď95, Ď97, Ď98,í99)was at a good price at auctionrecently, I bit. Then of course buyerís angst- the plurality of lot was 1995, which was my favorite at a vertical, but that was 8 years ago, how had it held? Better to get it over with. Whew, relief. Black plum and cherry fruit, good acids, some barnyard funk thatís ok with me (I didnít go toUC-Davis). Leathery. So sure this isnít especially Italian, but a nice midmodern Merlot that would be a good ringer in a flight of modern Pomerols.This did begin to crack up - a tad volatile, growing ashtray notes- prettyquickly, but first 90 minutes were fine. For then, B+ (after 3 hours, C+, on day 2, C- and rest of bottle into vinegar crock). So I know others are party wines, open when they go around a big table, as opposed to my weeknight nursing a bottle for 5 hours (and checking in next day)

Thursday was just me, chicken and white bean chili, and the 2011 Baudry Chinon rose. Not much to add to previous notes on this, a beautiful pink in a more restrained/serious style. Holds up well over 3 nights. B+

Friday was grilled ahi, pasta with pesto, and salad, plus the 2007 Baudry Chinon (the straight domaine bottling). I donít know if it was me or the wine, but I just couldnít get up any enthusiasm for this on this night. Iíve liked a lot before (and am generally a huge Baudry fan). No discernable flaw- some dark fruit, a little tobacco leaf, good acids- but just didnít seem to sing to me. Peculiar. B-/C+

Saturday farmerís market led to LI sea scallops, with corn and caprese, and I decided to open the 2009 de Villaine Bouzeron Aligote. Grapefruit andlemon, a touch of stones, decent length. Better with food than after. B

Grade disclaimer: I'm a very easy grader, basically A is an excellent wine,B a good wine, C mediocre. Anything below C means I wouldn't drink at a party where it was only choice. Furthermore, I offer no promises of objectivity, accuracy, and certainly not of consistency.