Friday, July 3, 2009

Vacation gaming and more!

I'm on vacation this week. Every year at this time we spend a week with my wife's family for the 4th of July. Vacation time means gaming time.

Games ON the table

So far, only one game has been played, and that game is Dominion. I introduced the game to my brother-in-law on Monday, and that's all he's wanted to play since (and I'm not arguing). So far, we've logged 11 plays of Dominion. Our 7th play ended in a clean tie. We had had an equal number of turns, so there was no tiebreaker. As I've mentioned before, I love when games in in ties. I like when different strategies lead to the same result and players can share in the victory. My brother-in-law finally won a few plays today and he was very glad. I got his computer all set up with BrettSpielWelt so that he can play online if he wants to. He loves Dominion.

I also noticed that BrettSpielWelt has already incorporated new Dominion expansion cards. I played against someone yesterday morning and had the pleasure of trying out a couple of these new cards for the first time. One of these, the Baron, I found to be a welcome addition to the game because it gives you something interesting to do with Estate cards. The Baron (as I remember it) allows you to trash an Estate to gain +4 money for the turn. If you don't do that, you may choose to gain an Estate card.

I keep checking Boards & Bits to see if the Dominion expansion has arrived yet because once it does, my game order ships.

You like wine?

If you've read (or skimmed) this far, thank you. To close the Games on the Table vacation post, I'm going to leave you with some wine recommendations. My father-in-law always has a stash of great wines on hand, and we taste many of them during the week, often side by side and with cheeses and foods. Below, I'll give some feedback on the wines I enjoyed this week. All are highly recommended by yours truly.

Castoro Cellars 2008 Fume Blanc
- My top pick of the week!

This white wine is just excellent. It manages the sourness of a pinot grigio alongside the sweetness of a riesling. The complexity and flavor through and through make this wine one that I would enjoy at pretty much any meal. My father-in-law reports that you can pick this wine up for a great price at Trader Joe's (which is where you will find all the good wines for great prices in my experience). I'd say this was the favorite of the menfolk this week.

Peachy Canyon 2006 Para Siempre

While the $40 price on this wine doesn't make it that much better than many cheaper wines, this rich and complex red is very tasty. I didn't sense many obvious distinct flavors here, but the overall experience was very good, which explains the high price. All three of us who tasted it agreed that it had a silky thickness to it that made it smooth and complex from start to finish. When it first touches the tongue, you can tell this is a well-balanced wine. As it moves back, the flavor spreads into the rest of the mouth, and finishes with very little warmth and no sting. We were all pleased with this selection.

Castoro Cellars 2007 Muscat Canelli

When you want a dessert wine, you can't go wrong with Muscat. The apricot/peach flavor is here, as it is with Barefoot's Moscato, although, I still can't tell whether or not I like this more than Barefoot's. It's not quite as simple and light as the Barefoot Moscato, which could be a good thing. This was the favorite of the ladies this week.

Happy 4th of July to all of you American readers! Thank you for reading, and may you have good summer gaming!

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