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The domain name grillinggoodeats.com is for sale

Grilling Good Eats 2I've truly enjoyed putting this site together and helping the grilling and smoking communities share information.  I post the grilling and smoking tips, product reviews and all the recipes with a passion for cooking meat over a fire!

The content from this site isn't going to be lost however, it's now available and will be expanded on at www.bacheloronthecheap.com!

The domain name www.grillinggoodeats.com is available through Afternic.

Thank you,

Mike T.


The Bachelor on the Cheap guide to making wine selection and food pairing easier - Grenache

Wine FunBy Mike Thayer

This is the ninth of an ongoing series of wines and food pairings

Wine, it's the perfect beverage for a romantic dinner, a go-to for a casual get-together/party and a holiday meal is complimented by it.  Whether it's a meal for two, a small party for friends or a gathering of family, having the right wine elevates the occasion. 

And while most people follow the basic rule of thumb - red wine for beef and white wine for chicken - selecting the right wine can still be challenging.  What KIND of red for that roast beef?  Or, What KIND of white for that lemon chicken dish?  Does dessert call for a different wine?

The choices are many and can be intimidating, with the reds there's Merlot; Cabernet Sauvignon; Zinfandel; Syrah/Shiraz; Malbec; Pinot Noir; Nebbiolo; Sangiovese; Grenache and all kinds of red blends to choose from.

With the whites there's Chardonnay; Sauvignon Blanc; Moscato; Pinot Grigio; Riesling; Gewurztraminer, Viognier, Torrontes, Albarino and yes, white wine has it's share of blends as well.

So you walk into the liquor store in need of a bottle of wine for a dinner date or special occasion... 

Sure, you can rely on the store attendant to help you with a selection but that can be hit or miss.  A good attendant will ask you if you prefer wines on the sweeter or dryer side and what you might be pairing it with.  But keep in mind the attendant's palate is different than yours, their sweet and dry preferences are different than yours and they might try to push a particular brand on you that's in the store's best interest, not yours.  So why not walk in the store knowing what you need?  That's what this guide is for, to help you with food pairings, what is sweet, what is dry and getting a good wine for under $15 a bottle.  That's the Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly thing to do, get something nice, without paying too much for it.

For previous reviews, click on the link below:

Today's featured wine:  Grenache

Originally cultivated in Spain, the Grenache grape is now common in wine valleys around the world.  The Grenache is sold as a single varietal but it's most popular by producers as a blending grape due to its medium to low acidity, medium tannins and high alcohol.   This wine has fruity notes of black cherry, raspberry and strawberry balanced with some spice such as star anise, cinnamon and black pepper.  Grenache pairs really well with slow cooked meats, hearty stews and chili.  For meatless options think oven baked pasta dishes with cheese and veggies to include mushrooms, bell peppers, eggplant and zucchini.  The cheeses you'll want on your charcuterie board should include pepper jack, brie and mild cheddar.  For dessert be sure to select a sweet Grenache (the longer its aged, the drier it gets), this is a good red wine for a classic pairing with chocolate, pretty much chocolate anything.  Serve it slightly chilled, at 60 - 65 degrees, refrigerate about 30 minutes before serving and after popping the cork, let it breathe for about 10 minutes. 

Vega-Sindoa-El-Chaparral-GrenacheBachelor on the Cheap Recomendation:  Vega Sindoa El Chaparral Grenache - $15.  Hailing from Spain, this is a critically acclaimed wine by the Wine Advocate.  Winemaker notes:  Bright red. Suave raspberry and cherry preserve aromas are compelling and sexy. Musky herbal and floral qualities add complexity to the nose but fade into the red berry aromas, which continue on the palate.persistent.

Next Up in the series:  White wines are up next!

$pend Wisely My Friends...

Help support the continued content for Shopping, Dining, Best Deals, Product & Service Reviews, Tips, Hacks, Recipes and other great information by buying me a coffee. Your support to keep Bachelor on the Cheap a free resource is much appreciated! ~ Mike

Buy Me a Coffee

follow me on twitter @Bacheloronthe1

 


Product Review: Kingsford Onion, Garlic & Paprika Flavored Charcoal

Kingsford Garlic Onion Paprika flavored charcoal
How much garlic, onion & paprika flavor will this deliver?

By Mike Thayer

Make no mistake, I am a charcoal enthusiast.  In my humble opinion, for a grilled meal, you can't beat charcoal and a Weber Kettle. 

I do like to throw some added flavor through wood in combination with the charcoal, chunks of pecan wood to do up some brats, chunks of a fruit wood for pork or chunks of oak for beef.  It all depends on what you're grilling or smoking.  The key is creating layers of flavor.

I recently did a review of Kingsford's Cumin Chili Flavored Charcoal and I really like it. I have to admit that I was initially skeptical of 'spice flavored smoke,' thinking, "How much spice flavor will that actually crank out?" and "Isn't that what spices, rubs and marinades are for?  Talk about lazy grilling...." 

I lost all skepticism I had for 'spice flavored smoke' when I dumped the chimney of that Cumin Chili charcoal.  You can smell all those spice notes, it's like I was already grilling something and I hadn't even put any food on the grill yet!  The aroma of the cumin and chili was enticing and it did indeed help create depth of flavor in the chicken I fired up that day.

So today, I'm reviewing Kingsford Onion, Garlic & Paprika Flavored Charcoal.

Here is the description pulled from the Kingsford website:

Garlic Onion Paprika:  "Savory, caramelized flavor featuring an earthy base of garlic paired with the mildly sweet notes of onion and warmth of paprika."  The flavored briquettes are hickory based.

Bacon cheddar brats, bacon wrapped hot dogs, bacon wrapped Kielbasa
It's a celebration of bacon!

In testing how much flavor this charcoal delivers, I did a "Celebration of Bacon," grilling up bacon cheddar brats, bacon wrapped hot dogs and bacon wrapped Kielbasa.  You can't beat a brat done right on the grill and everything is better with bacon!  I used to do beer brats, then I experimented with wine and doing brats in those ways are tasty, but my favorite way to do brats is to just let them pick up the smoke flavor over indirect heat and my go-to wood for brats is pecan.

How did the Garlic Onion & Paprika charcoal do?

I continue to be a fan of the Kingsford line of 'spice flavored smoke.'  All of the meats I prepared on the Weber were delicious, complimented with those notes of garlic, onion and paprika.  And complimented is a key word, it's not overpowering smoke, it lets the deliciousness of the meat shine!  The brats had that nice crisp, snap of a bite when puncturing the skin, the sausage inside was juicy and there was that nice smoky spice flavor throughout.   The dawgs, Kielbasa and bacon was all good too, but those brats were the best.

Kingsford Flavored Charcoal
In the bag, traditional Kingsford briquettes and 'Signature Flavor' briquettes

Costing me $13.99 for an 12 pound bag, I'm giving Kingsford Onion, Garlic & Paprika Flavored Charcoal 5 out of 5 Bachelor on the Cheap stars.  It's reasonably priced and most definitely delivers another layer of flavor on whatever you're grilling!  This charcoal is certainly a repeat buy and I can't wait to try the Basil, Sage & Thyme flavor!  Marinade and/or dry rub (on this day it was bacon & black pepper)+ Kingsford Flavored Charcoal = Another Dose of YUM!

5 stars

 

I take great pleasure in grilling good eats!

~ Mike Thayer

$pend Wisely My Friends...

Related:  Product Review: Kingsford Cumin Chili Flavored Charcoal - Grillinggoodeats.com

A bacon cheddar brat
The brats really picked up the flavored smoke
brat
A juicy brat, with a nice smoky bite

 

 

 

 

 

 

Help support the continued content for Shopping, Dining, Best Deals, Product & Service Reviews, Tips, Hacks, Recipes and other great information by buying me a coffee. Your support to keep Bachelor on the Cheap a free resource is much appreciated! ~ Mike

Buy Me a Coffee

follow me on twitter @Bacheloronthe1


A Bachelor on the Cheap Shopping Tip Alert: Father's Day Gift Shopping Deal at Sam's Club

BBQ Grilling Gift Set
Available at Sam's Club

By Mike Thayer

SHOPPING TIP ALERT!

I wrote earlier today about Father's Day coming up and recommended gifting something with a grilling theme. 

Ladies and gents, Father's Day is approaching. If you're considering getting a husband/dad/boyfriend a grilled themed gift (a VERY wise choice by the way) then consider the following: Grilling Tip #9: Do NOT use a fork of any kind to grill! Forks pierce the meat, letting those juices sizzle down into the charcoal and once those juices are gone, they’re gone, leaving you with the same situation as tip #8 - eating a dry piece of meat lacking great flavor. Avoid grill crime.
 
Do NOT buy a grilling tool set that has a fork in it. And stay away from wooden handled ones, the varnish eventually wears off and can flake off on the food. Go with silicone handle sets. https://www.grillinggoodeats.com/grilling-tips-tools/

Here's a perfect deal with that in mind!

Sam's Club has a BBQ Grilling Gift Set that normally retails for $39.98, for just $9.91!   Fork NOT included, which is a very smart thing.

This is a steal of a deal that includes BBQ sauce, a veggie roaster seasoning blend, pink Himalayan salt with grinder, two spice rubs, a basting brush, meat claws (pulled pork anyone?), metal tongs and a cutting board!  This is a PHENOMENAL  DEAL.  You're not going to find a better one, all this stuff for just $9.91?

BBQ Grilling Gift Set
All that for just $9.91!

And who doesn't love a cutting board in the shape of a pig?

This is available at Sam's Club and I'm sure it's a limited time offer kind of thing, available for as long as supplies last.  Don't wait too long, they're going to be gone before you know it.  These kits just went on sale and when I went in to pick one up today just after the lunch hour, the display as you entered the store was nearly picked through.  I'm sure there are more kits stashed in the back, but that's how fast these things are going.

This is a winner of a gift made available by Sam's Club, it's a deal you just can't pass up - it's only $9.91!.

Dad, husband, boyfriend will have a VERY Happy Father's Day receiving this great gift.

This deal gets 5 out of 5 Bachelor on the Cheap stars!

$pend Wisely My Friends...

BBQ Grilling Gift Set
Also available online for shipment to/pickup at your favorite Sam's Club

I hope you appreciate the shopping tip!

Help support the continued content for Shopping, Dining, Best Deals, Product & Service Reviews, Tips, Hacks, Recipes and other great information by buying me a coffee. Your support to keep Bachelor on the Cheap a free resource is much appreciated! ~ Mike

Buy Me a Coffee

follow me on twitter @Bacheloronthe1


The Bachelor on the Cheap guide to making wine selection and food pairing easier - Sangiovese

Wine FunBy Mike Thayer

This is the eighth of an ongoing series of wines and food pairings

Wine, it's the perfect beverage for a romantic dinner, a go-to for a casual get-together/party and a holiday meal is complimented by it.  Whether it's a meal for two, a small party for friends or a gathering of family, having the right wine elevates the occasion. 

And while most people follow the basic rule of thumb - red wine for beef and white wine for chicken - selecting the right wine can still be challenging.  What KIND of red for that roast beef?  Or, What KIND of white for that lemon chicken dish?  Does dessert call for a different wine?

The choices are many and can be intimidating, with the reds there's Merlot; Cabernet Sauvignon; Zinfandel; Syrah/Shiraz; Malbec; Pinot Noir; Nebbiolo; Sangiovese; Grenache and all kinds of red blends to choose from.

With the whites there's Chardonnay; Sauvignon Blanc; Moscato; Pinot Grigio; Riesling; Gewurztraminer, Viognier, Torrontes, Albarino and yes, white wine has it's share of blends as well.

So you walk into the liquor store in need of a bottle of wine for a dinner date or special occasion... 

Sure, you can rely on the store attendant to help you with a selection but that can be hit or miss.  A good attendant will ask you if you prefer wines on the sweeter or dryer side and what you might be pairing it with.  But keep in mind the attendant's palate is different than yours, their sweet and dry preferences are different than yours and they might try to push a particular brand on you that's in the store's best interest, not yours.  So why not walk in the store knowing what you need?  That's what this guide is for, to help you with food pairings, what is sweet, what is dry and getting a good wine for under $15 a bottle.  That's the Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly thing to do, get something nice, without paying too much for it.

For previous reviews, click on the link below:

Today's featured wine:  Sangiovese

Sangiovese is a dry, acidic wine that is known as a "chameleon" grape, to mean that different wines using this grape can be notably different. The vast majority of Sangiovese is produced in the central region of Tuscany, Italy.   Look for tasting notes of cherry and herbal, earthy tones.  Because it's so acidic, stick to savory foods, this is a good dinner wine.  Pairing well with just about anything tomato based, Sangiovese also matches up nicely with spicy dishes.  Consider pairing it with meat dishes featuring a savory cherry sauce to take advantage of the cherry notes in the wine - think grilled pork loin.  Load up your charcuterie board with salami, prosciutto, calabrese and pecorino cheese.  When it comes to non-meat dishes, serve this wine alongside hearty bean soups or gnocchi in a brown butter and herb sauce.  Pass on this wine when it comes to sweets however, NOT a good match.  Serve it slightly chilled, at 60 - 65 degrees, refrigerate about 30 minutes before serving. 

Caparzo SangioveseBachelor on the Cheap Recomendation: Caparzo Sangiovese - $9.99.   This wine is from Italy, Tuscany region, Toscano sub-region.  Best with red meat, pasta with meat sauces, bean and barley soups.  Winemaker notes:  Intense ruby color. Fruity, spicy aromas. The palate is full, fruity, persistent.

Next Up in the series:  Grenache

$pend Wisely My Friends...

Help support the continued content for Shopping, Dining, Best Deals, Product & Service Reviews, Tips, Hacks, Recipes and other great information by buying me a coffee. Your support to keep Bachelor on the Cheap a free resource is much appreciated! ~ Mike

Buy Me a Coffee

follow me on twitter @Bacheloronthe1

 


The Bachelor on the Cheap guide to making wine selection and food pairing easier - Nebbiolo

Wine FunBy Mike Thayer

This is the seventh of an ongoing series of wines and food pairings

Wine, it's the perfect beverage for a romantic dinner, a go-to for a casual get-together/party and a holiday meal is complimented by it.  Whether it's a meal for two, a small party for friends or a gathering of family, having the right wine elevates the occasion. 

And while most people follow the basic rule of thumb - red wine for beef and white wine for chicken - selecting the right wine can still be challenging.  What KIND of red for that roast beef?  Or, What KIND of white for that lemon chicken dish?  Does dessert call for a different wine?

The choices are many and can be intimidating, with the reds there's Merlot; Cabernet Sauvignon; Zinfandel; Syrah/Shiraz; Malbec; Pinot Noir; Nebbiolo; Sangiovese; Grenache and all kinds of red blends to choose from.

With the whites there's Chardonnay; Sauvignon Blanc; Moscato; Pinot Grigio; Riesling; Gewurztraminer, Viognier, Torrontes, Albarino and yes, white wine has it's share of blends as well.

So you walk into the liquor store in need of a bottle of wine for a dinner date or special occasion... 

Sure, you can rely on the store attendant to help you with a selection but that can be hit or miss.  A good attendant will ask you if you prefer wines on the sweeter or dryer side and what you might be pairing it with.  But keep in mind the attendant's palate is different than yours, their sweet and dry preferences are different than yours and they might try to push a particular brand on you that's in the store's best interest, not yours.  So why not walk in the store knowing what you need?  That's what this guide is for, to help you with food pairings, what is sweet, what is dry and getting a good wine for under $15 a bottle.  That's the Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly thing to do, get something nice, without paying too much for it.

For previous reviews, click on the link below:

Today's featured wine:  Nebbiolo

Nebbiolo grapes are grown in many parts of the world, but the vast majority are grown in Northern Italy.  Nebbiolo wines are also produced in California, Argentina and Australia.  Having high tannins and acidity, it pairs well with fatty, creamy dishes with the acidity cutting through the rich flavors and cleansing the palate.  Like Pinot Noir, Nebbiolo is a food friendly wine and matches up with a number of main dishes and sides.  Look for tasting notes of cherry, raspberry, rose, star anise and tobacco.  This is a medium to full bodied wine that will compliment just about any tomato based pasta dish you can think of, especially a good ragu or bolognese and going Italian is your best bet.   When it comes to a non pasta meat dish, think fattier meats but nothing too gamey, perhaps a slow roasted pork or beef roast.  When it comes to cheeses, don't go too funky. Creamy cheeses like brie and goat are excellent paired with Nebbiolo, as are hard cheeses such as Parmigiana Reggiano or Pecorino.  For you veggie lovers out there, mushroom anything!  Roasted root vegetables are great and you can get away with loading them up with a lot of olive oil and/or butter.  A spicy Asian veggie stir fry is good as well.  For dessert, don't go there.  Nebbiolo is not a good match with anything sweet.  And like other red wines, serve it slightly chilled, at 60 - 65 degrees, refrigerate about 30 minutes before serving but decanter it first, it will benefit from breathing.

Kirkland BaroloBachelor on the Cheap Recomendation: Kirkland Signature Borolo - $19.99. I know I prefaced this with recommending good wines for $15 or less, but finding a good Nebbiolo for under $20.... Challenging!  What Costco produces with their Kirkland Signature brand hails from Piedmont, Italy, THE place on the planet for the top producers of Nebbiolo.  Here's the description from the bottle:  Rich garnet red in color with notes of vanilla and rose petal on the nose, this full-bodied wine delivers notes of black currant and licorice on the palate. Great for long-term aging.  14% alcohol.

Next Up in the series:  Sangiovese

$pend Wisely My Friends...

Help support the continued content for Shopping & Service reviews, Tips, Hacks and other great information by buying me a coffee. Your support to keep Bachelor on the Cheap a free resource is much appreciated! ~ Mike

Buy Me a Coffee

follow me on twitter @Bacheloronthe1


The many uses for Tzatziki Sauce - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

Tzatziki Sauce

Tzatziki on a burgerTzatziki isn't just for gyros....   The sauce is actually a fantastic change of pace addition to any grilled meat or fish.  Use it as a topping on a burger, put a generous dollop on salmon, serve it on the side with kabobs.  It's also excellent used as a veggie dip, salad dressing, put it on a pork rind, a lettuce wrap sandwich and more.  You can pretty much substitute Tzatziki sauce for anything you might use mayonnaise on and with only about two carbs per two Tablespoon serving that makes it Carb-Check Diet friendly!

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/2 an English cucumber, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • One Tablespoon dried dill
  • One Tablespoon lemon juice (citric acid is a nice alternative)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, mix until thoroughly incorporated, cover and chill for about 30 minutes or until ready to use. 

Carb-Check Diet_smallNot only is Tzatziki delicious, versatile and easy to put together, it's cheap to make!   You can whip up a batch of Tzatziki for less than $5 and have plenty of leftover ingredients to make more, or create something else.  That's what I call a Bachelor on the Cheap winner of a recipe.

$pend Wisely My Friends...

Help support the continued content for Shopping & Service reviews, Tips, Hacks and other great information by buying me a coffee. Your support to keep Bachelor on the Cheap a free resource is much appreciated! ~ Mike

Buy Me a Coffee


The Bachelor on the Cheap guide to making wine selection and food pairing easier - Pinot Noir

Wine FunBy Mike Thayer

This is the sixth of an ongoing series of wines and food pairings

Wine, it's the perfect beverage for a romantic dinner, a go-to for a casual get-together/party and a holiday meal is complimented by it.  Whether it's a meal for two, a small party for friends or a gathering of family, having the right wine elevates the occasion. 

And while most people follow the basic rule of thumb - red wine for beef and white wine for chicken - selecting the right wine can still be challenging.  What KIND of red for that roast beef?  Or, What KIND of white for that lemon chicken dish?  Does dessert call for a different wine?

The choices are many and can be intimidating, with the reds there's Merlot; Cabernet Sauvignon; Zinfandel; Syrah/Shiraz; Malbec; Pinot Noir; Nebbiolo; Sangiovese; Grenache and all kinds of red blends to choose from.

With the whites there's Chardonnay; Sauvignon Blanc; Moscato; Pinot Grigio; Riesling; Gewurztraminer, Viognier, Torrontes, Albarino and yes, white wine has it's share of blends as well.

So you walk into the liquor store in need of a bottle of wine for a dinner date or special occasion... 

Sure, you can rely on the store attendant to help you with a selection but that can be hit or miss.  A good attendant will ask you if you prefer wines on the sweeter or dryer side and what you might be pairing it with.  But keep in mind the attendant's palate is different than yours, their sweet and dry preferences are different than yours and they might try to push a particular brand on you that's in the store's best interest, not yours.  So why not walk in the store knowing what you need?  That's what this guide is for, to help you with food pairings, what is sweet, what is dry and getting a good wine for under $15 a bottle.  That's the Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly thing to do, get something nice, without paying too much for it.

For previous reviews, click on the link below:

Today's featured wine:  Pinot Noir

First cultivated in Burgundy, France, the Pinot Noir grape is now grown all over the world.  The appeal of Pinot Noir is how versatile it is with food pairings, it's a red that can go with just about anything.  Think about that next date, you're at a quaint restaurant, a candlelit table for two...   You're having steak, your date is having salmon, what kind of wine can you share?  Get a bottle of Pinot Noir!  With flavors of cherry, plum, spice, and some earthy notes, this food friendly wine has soft tannins and a bright acidity.  It's a lighter bodied red wine with a smooth finish.  Pinot Noir is an excellent choice for a charcuterie board that includes ham, goat cheese and olives.  And in thinking of the diversity of a charcuterie board and all those great options, think pizza and all the great topping options...  Yes, pizza and Pinot Noir is a great match!  Pot Roast, roast turkey, roast chicken, glazed ham, rack of lamb, the aforementioned steak and salmon, they're all complimented by a glass (or two) of Pinot Noir.  This wine is also excellent with mushroom anything, asparagus and roasted root vegetables.  It pairs well with hummus (w/roasted red pepper is a personal favorite), gnocchi, ravioli, risotto and here's a really good one, spinach & artichoke dip.    For dessert, think chocolate, decadent brownies, chocolate covered strawberries or a chocolate mousse.  And like other red wines, serve it slightly chilled, at 60 - 65 degrees (refrigerate for about 30 minutes before serving).

Bread-Butter-Pinot-NoirBachelor on the Cheap Recomendation: Bread & Butter Pinot Noir - $14.99.  Here's the description:  Bread & Butter Pinot Noir is all about that juicy red fruit. Think cherries and raspberries with a touch of cassis. Delicate hints of cedar, smoke, and bay leaf cut the sweetness of the fruit, creating a nicely balanced bouquet. That luscious fruit bouquet continues onto the palate, where it’s joined by soft flavors of oak and savory notes. With a long and beautifully smooth finish, this Pinot Noir will melt in your mouth.

And something to consider, subscribing to a wine club.  Here's one that I've tried and I have to say every bottle I sampled was something I would order again.  WineShop at Home

Next Up in the series:  Nebbiolo

$pend Wisely My Friends...


Buy Me a Coffee


The Bachelor on the Cheap guide to making wine selection and food pairing easier - Malbec

Wine FunBy Mike Thayer

This is the fifth of an ongoing series of wines and food pairings

Wine, it's the perfect beverage for a romantic dinner, a go-to for a casual get-together/party and a holiday meal is complimented by it.  Whether it's a meal for two, a small party for friends or a gathering of family, having the right wine elevates the occasion. 

And while most people follow the basic rule of thumb - red wine for beef and white wine for chicken - selecting the right wine can still be challenging.  What KIND of red for that roast beef?  Or, What KIND of white for that lemon chicken dish?  Does dessert call for a different wine?

The choices are many and can be intimidating, with the reds there's Merlot; Cabernet Sauvignon; Zinfandel; Syrah/Shiraz; Malbec; Pinot Noir; Nebbiolo; Sangiovese; Grenache and all kinds of red blends to choose from.

With the whites there's Chardonnay; Sauvignon Blanc; Moscato; Pinot Grigio; Riesling; Gewurztraminer, Viognier, Torrontes, Albarino and yes, white wine has it's share of blends as well.

So you walk into the liquor store in need of a bottle of wine for a dinner date or special occasion... 

Sure, you can rely on the store attendant to help you with a selection but that can be hit or miss.  A good attendant will ask you if you prefer wines on the sweeter or dryer side and what you might be pairing it with.  But keep in mind the attendant's palate is different than yours, their sweet and dry preferences are different than yours and they might try to push a particular brand on you that's in the store's best interest, not yours.  So why not walk in the store knowing what you need?  That's what this guide is for, to help you with food pairings, what is sweet, what is dry and getting a good wine for under $15 a bottle.  That's the Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly thing to do, get something nice, without paying too much for it.

For previous reviews, click on the link below:

Today's featured wine:  Malbec

According to Wine Folly, Malbec has been a popular blending grape in France for years, but thanks to Argentina, Malbec has become popular in it's own right.   This is a very fruity wine with a deep purple color and full body.  Carrying notes of blackberry, black plum, and black cherry, the wine also has savory notes such as black pepper, spice, sweet tobacco and cocoa.  Typically higher in alcohol content than other wines it also has a short finish, to mean it doesn't stay on your tongue long.   Because of that short finish, Malbec pairs well with leaner meats like a flank steak rather than a ribeye.  Pork loin dishes are a nice pairing as is poultry with dark meat and leaner cuts of lamb.  Game meats such as bison, venison and ostrich are also good.   For folks seeking lighter fare, Malbec pairs well with goat and blue cheeses.  Mushrooms are excellent with this wine as are stuffed peppers.  For dessert, think chocolate desserts and/or salty caramel.  Serve Malbec in a wide bodied glass to take full advantage of the fruity aromas.   And like other red wines, serve it slightly chilled, at 60 - 65 degrees (refrigerate for about 30 minutes before serving). And you've heard the phrase, "Let the wine breathe?" Malbec benefits from decanting (that means pour the wine out of the bottle and into a decanter for those of you who live in Haysville). Go with a Malbec made in Argentina, that's where the best ones come from.

Alamos MalbecBachelor on the Cheap Recomendation: Alamos Malbec - $10.99.  Here's the description:  Alamos Malbec captures the spirit and terroir of Argentina’s signature variety. Grown at high-level altitudes, our Malbec offers layers of dark cherry and blackberry with a velvety mouthfeel. This complex red wine pairs beautifully with a wide range of cuisine and is recognized for its pronounced freshness.

And something to consider, subscribing to a wine club.  Here's one that I've tried and I have to say every bottle I sampled was something I would order again.  WineShop at Home

Next Up in the series:  Pinot Noir

$pend Wisely My Friends...


The Bachelor on the Cheap guide to making wine selection and food pairing easier - Merlot

Wine FunBy Mike Thayer

This is the first of an ongoing series of wines and food pairings

Wine, it's the perfect beverage for a romantic dinner, a go-to for a casual get-together/party and a holiday meal is complimented by it.  Whether it's a meal for two, a small party for friends or a gathering of family, having the right wine elevates the occasion. 

And while most people follow the basic rule of thumb - red wine for beef and white wine for chicken - selecting the right wine can still be challenging.  What KIND of red for that roast beef?  Or, What KIND of white for that lemon chicken dish?  Does dessert call for a different wine?

The choices are many and can be intimidating, with the reds there's Merlot; Cabernet Sauvignon; Zifandel; Syrah/Shiraz; Malbec; Pinot Noir; Nebbiolo; Sangiovese; Grenache and all kinds of red blends to choose from.

With the whites there's Chardonnay; Sauvignon Blanc; Moscato; Pinot Grigio; Riesling; Gewurztraminer, Viognier, Torrontes, Albarino and yes, white wine has it's share of blends as well.

So you walk into the liquor store in need of a bottle of wine for a dinner date or special occasion... 

Sure, you can rely on the store attendant to help you with a selection but that can be hit or miss.  A good attendant will ask you if you prefer wines on the sweeter or dryer side and what you might be pairing it with.  But keep in mind the attendant's palate is different than yours, their sweet and dry preferences are different than yours and they might try to push a particular brand on you that's in the store's best interest, not yours.  So why not walk in the store knowing what you need?  That's what this guide is for, to help you with food pairings, what is sweet, what is dry and getting a good wine for under $15 a bottle.  That's the Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly thing to do, get something nice, without paying too much for it.

So let's start off with the reds, with today's feature:  Merlot

This is one of the more popular reds and if you're looking for a wine to go with a good steak, Merlot might be for you.  A Merlot is a hearty wine that pairs well with grilled steaks, roast beef, braised lamb and tomato based pastas. If eating lighter fare, a Merlot goes well with bold flavored cheeses, such as a good sharp cheddar, gouda, or a blue cheese such as Gorgonzola.  For dessert lovers, a nice Merlot pairs well with chocolate.  And for those that like a wine on the dryer side, it's a good wine to drink by itself as well. A traditional Merlot is a medium bodied, full flavored red wine the carries fruity notes such as strawberries, raspberries, plum and/or dark cherry.  Serve Merlot slightly chilled at 60 - 65 degrees (refrigerate for about 15 - 20 minutes before serving).  If you don't finish the bottle, cork it and refrigerate, it's good for up to 4 days.  Just be sure to pull the bottle and let it come up in temp (a refrigerator chills to about 41 degrees) a bit before serving to appreciate the full flavor profile.  If you haven't finished the bottle by the four day mark, cook with it.

Bachelor on the Cheap Recomendation:  Bogle Merlot - $9.99.  A California wine with notes of plum and dark cherry.

And something to consider, subscribing to a wine club.  Here's one that I've tried and I have to say every bottle I sampled was something I would order again.  WineShop at Home

Next Up in the series:  Cabernet Sauvignon

$pend Wisely My Friends...