A toast!

To the occupants of the lighting white convertible that blew by me earlier.

Four white-haired ladies and a massive Irish setter, cruising with the top down on a Tuesday afternoon.

I saw the riders all lean in toward each other, and then they threw their heads back, howling at a joke I wish I’d heard. Even the dog was smiling. I like to think maybe they were four runaway grannies, busting a move up Old Hickory Boulevard before anyone could saddle them with kids to watch during Fall Break.

Go, grannies, go!

I don’t have many close girlfriends (it’s one of the many things Angelina Jolie and I have in common), but seeing those ladies made me think I should get some.

Honeycrisp Apple Sangria

Adapted from “Food & Wine” (October 2007)

  • 2 Honeycrisp apples (one for sangria, one for garnish)
  • One 750-milliliter bottle unoaked Chardonnay
  • 1/2 cup Calvados or other apple liquor
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 oranges, 1 quartered
  • 1 lemon, quartered
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 quarter-size slices of fresh ginger
  • 3 cloves (optional)
  • Club soda or lemon-lime soda (like Sprite or Sierra Mist) or ginger ale
  • Garnish: 2 tablespoons sugar + 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  1. Peel, core and chop one of the apples. Set aside.
  2. In a large pitcher, combine the Chardonnay, Calvados and sugar. Stir to dissolve the sugar.
  3. Add the chopped apple, 1 quartered orange, lemon, cinnamon sticks, ginger and cloves (if using). Refrigerate at least 4 hours.
  4. Strain the sangria into a pitcher. (You can just trash the leftover fruit.)
  5. Peel, core and finely chop the remaining apple and orange. Toss them in a bowl, and set aside.
  6. On a small plate, blend the 2 tablespoons sugar and cinnamon. Moisten the rims of your wine glasses, and dip them in the cinnamon sugar to coat.
  7. Fill the glasses with ice. Pour in the sangria until each glass is three-quarters full. Top with a splash of soda. Garnish with a spoonful of the chopped apple and orange.