our july girl’s night at screwtop.

As I’ve mentioned before, Screwtop is one of my absolute favorite places.  I go there monthly with three dear girlfriends, and then whenever I can outside of that!  I love being a wine club member, and trying out the new wines they give me every month.  The four of us like to go on Wednesdays, because there is usually a $10 off a bottle deal for a certain type of wine.

This particular Wednesday, the deal was for rosé wines… not usually my favorite type of wine, as the girls know, but Screwtop has changed my previous opinions in other instances before!  This time was no different, and I found myself thoroughly enjoying my glass.  We picked this Jeio Bisol Rosé Prosecco from Veneto, Italy.  The Veneto and Prosecco aspects, as well as the fact that the waitress said it was one of the dryer rosés on the menu, was all what swayed me.  Yum!

Jeio Bisol Rosé Prosecco from Veneto, Italy

For those of you who don’t know, Prosecco is to Italy as Champagne is to France.  Prosecco tends to be cheaper and dryer… both pluses, in my opinion.  :)  Rosé wines are pink, because there is very brief contact with the grape skins during the winemaking process.  By the way, isn’t it crazy how flutes can hold so much liquid?  The whole bottle was drained into four glasses!  An optical illusion.

We ordered a ton of food, as always.  Here is our first platter (five cheeses and one meat):

Spanish Cabra Paprika, Cabot Clothbound Cheddar, CA Humboldt Fog, Italian Robiola, NY Kunik, VA Napoli

Most of us agreed it was the best cheese plate we’d ever ordered!  You can see one of the girls’ beautiful documentation and rating system two pictures down.  The Cabra cheese was the same that I used in my Spanish mashed potatoes last month.  I think I liked the cheese better when mixed in the potatoes… but it still served to be different from the other cheeses, and variety is always fun.  Hooray for the Humboldt Fog, which may have converted one in our group to now love goat cheese!  So overall, the plate was a success.

We ordered another few cheeses later on, as well as the grilled cheese sliders (it’s almost impossible for us to go to Screwtop and not order those).  Here is a photo of another little dish we tried:

Avocado Gazpacho

How cool is that?  I’ve already been searching for recipes to recreate it, especially since it was a special on the menu.  Maybe I’ll try out this one sometime soon.

So, as promised, here is the lovely documentation of everything we ordered (I had a glass of Piccolo Cru instead of her glass of Sauv Blanc, however).  The handwriting is so pretty that I just had to include her journal page of the night!

Our Screwtop Order!

Thank you, Screwtop!  Always guaranteed fun and a delight to our palettes!

steak & potatoes {spanish style}

I studied abroad in Spain four years ago, and fell in love with the country!  Early on in our relationship, Chris and I went on a date to Jaleo, “the renowned tapas restaurant of José Andrés.”  Oh my goodness.  One sip of the sangria, and I was transported back to Spain!  The tapas were amazing, and I have since fallen in love with the food at every restaurant of his.  Chris and I actually had our rehearsal dinner at the Jaleo in Crystal City, and it was SO delicious and fun!

Anyway, I could go on and on about Chef José Andrés, and I’m sure I will write more entries on his food.  We had some friends over for dinner on Saturday night, and I decided to make it Spanish-themed and use recipes by José!  His Made in Spain cookbook was the inspiration.  I made red wine sangria, beef tenderloin with picón cheese, sauteed green asparagus (white asparagus probably would have been more authentic!), and mashed potatoes with manchego and olive oil (that recipe can be found here).

Steak w/Blue Cheese Sauce & Asparagus

Here you can see most of the entire meal… I’m not sure why I put the mashed potatoes in a bowl when everything else was already on the plate!

Steak w/Blue Cheese Sauce, Asparagus, Mashed Potatoes w/Cabra Cheese, & Sangria!

There were a few adjustments.  I used ribeye steaks (cheaper) and Moody Blue Smoked Blue Cheese (from Screwtop!) for the sauce.  I also used Cabra cheese for the mashed potatoes (also from Screwtop) instead of Manchego.

Sangria!

What a fun night of Spanish-style food with our friends!  By the way, check out this new temporary restaurant of his that is opening up soon.  It’s going along with the National Archives’ exhibit, What’s Cooking, Uncle Sam?  I can’t wait!