Posts tagged ‘World Cup’

July 12, 2010

¡Viva España!

The Dutch looked invincible in the quarter finals and the semi-finals. They looked down right abysmal in the World Cup championship game. Thugs. Classless, plodding thugs. It’s not that Spain dazzled us with scoring fireworks, but at least they were aggressive around the box. Their one goal with minutes left in the second period of over time was all it took for them to be world champions. Congratulations.

In their honor, we uncorked a 2004 Condado de Haza tonight. This tasty tempranillo from Ribera del Duero is from our man Alejandro Fernandez, (the same guy that made the wine that I wrote about in Feelin Tinto Fino). OK, let me be honest, I was looking for an excuse to open the wine. I actually wanted Netherlands to win today.

I decanted this wine, assuming it had cast some sediment. Yep, there was a little at the bottom, but it was pretty hard to tell with this wine that is as opaque as FIFA referees and as purple as the mark on Alonso’s chest after he got kicked by De Jong in the match today. A little swirled kicked out delicious aromas of blackberry, cedar and the satisfying tingle of alcohol vapors. Ahhhhh.  

How does it taste? It tastes like victory. It starts off with round and deep with dark blackberries and cherries. It is quickly joined by tabacco and a hint of astringent tannins and eases out with vanilla aged raisins. Damned good.

It costs about $26 and is worth every penny. I think I would have drank it even if Netherlands won.

July 3, 2010

Brazil vs. Netherlands

Brazilian and Dutch fans celebrate together after the Netherlands victory

Paying respect to the national anthem before the match

A sea of yellow and orange jerseys swells in Fado Irish pub getting ready for the 9am start of the match pitting Brasil against Netherlands in the World Cup. A quick scan of the tables at 8:30 and most people are drinking coffee and water so far. Only a few pints and bloody marys.

As the game kicks in, the drinks start coming out en masse. Bloodies, mimosas, pints and pints and pints. Brazil takes an early 1-0 lead, but both teams look strong in the first half. I’m joining the crowd with a bloody. It’s spicy magic is loosening the grips of the vicious hangover brought on by my beer binge last night. Gentle vibrations tingle the angry nerves to sleep. The alcohol dances with its contrarian cousin, caffeine, to give me that precious morning buzz that can’t quite be matched any other time of the day.

Remember when you were a teenager just starting to drink? Remember how you could actually feel the effects of alcohol as it started to take control? That sweet numbness that tickled your cheeks and lips? What happened to that? Why is it the – now sober, now drunk paradigm is in effect now that we are older? Why can’t we appreciate the creeping in between stages as much as we did when we were kids? Well, the coffee, vodka, beer buzz in the morning gives an approximation. A lovely, delicious approximation of youth.

Here’s what Fado puts in a bloody mary:

  • Well vodka – no surprise
  • Mister P’s bloody mary mix – never heard of it
  • HP sauce – cause it’s an Irish pub, and the Brits love that shit
  • Tabasco – standard
  • Guinness – again, Irish pub and a nice touch
  • Miscellaneous spices that you would expect
  • Garnished with a lime and an olive

Tasty. Down right respectable.

Second half of the match was a vicious fight. The Dutch dominated and ultimately prevailed. Brazil had to finish with a man down onna accounta a red card gettin thrown. The Netherlands deserved this one. They looked fantastic.

The crowd here is insane! The entire match was raucous. Absolutely packed pub almost equally split between orange and yellow. (As an aside, Brazilian women are frickin gorgeous.)  Vuvuzelas blaring, screaming, chanting, singing, jumping, high-fives, hugs. Public camaraderie. We’re sharing this moment in an exuberant, joyful way. Fans on both signs respectfully cheering and enjoying the battle. No animosity, just the pure pleasure that sport brings. Well, alcohol fueled  to boot. At the end of stoppage time the Brazilian fans embraced the Dutch with flags wrapped around shoulders. Conga lines sprouted and Jack and the Beanstock vined through the pub. Absolute jubilation.

Here it is. My prediction – Netherlands vs. Germany in the final. Germany wins 3-2. Yep. I said it. Mark it down.

As lovely as the bloody was, I had to move on to Smithwick. A fine Irish ale. I’ll keep these going until the Ghana v. Uruguay match at 1:30. God bless the World Cup. God bless the fans tht make this soooooo fun. God bless the drink the lubricates the soul and sings along with our happiness for competition. Long live sport. Long live drink.

What do you drink watchin the World Cup?