Mother's Day 2006 got off to a rough start. We were scheduled to host the family festivities in our new house and were running behind schedule. And the fourth straight day of steady downpours in New England made the prospect of running errands all morning even more dismal. However, nothing could have prepared us for what we encountered when we went down to the basement. All of our furniture - including our wine fridge - was floating in about six inches of water. Our sump pump was working overtime, but it couldn't keep up with the rain that was steadily flowing into our basement. Errands forgotten, we soon found ourselves relaying bottles of wine from the fridge to the stairs and making frantic phone calls trying to find a back-up pump.
Somehow we still manged to be ready to go by the time our family arrived that afternoon. A roast lamb with rosemary potatoes was in the oven and fresh vegetables were ready to be steamed. Yet our nerves were frazzled. Wanting to save our special Mother's Day treat - a Caymus 2003 Zinfandel that we picked up in Napa last summer - for the meal, we cracked open a bottle of Dievole La Vendemmia 2001 Chianti Classico. The wine was quickly consumed, and we decided that it was time to tap into some of the nicer bottles that we had rescued from the morning's flood. We chose a bottle of Pine Ridge 2002 Crimson Creek Napa Valley Merlot because my parents are big Merlot fans and Tremani 2003 Pinot Noir, which has come to be one of our favorite wines of all time. Of course the star of the day was the Caymus Zinfandel, which was perfectly balanced with smooth flavors and accented the lamb perfectly. However, when it came time for dessert, we realized that we'd forgotten to buy/prepare anything. Therefore, we had to pinch hit with Edy's Dibs (the modern version of Bon Bons) and Warre's Otima 10 year-old tawny port. Fortunately, both the Dibs and the Port were a huge success with mom. All-in-all, it was a lovely afternoon - complete with great food, wine, and music. Despite the rain outside, our spirits were high. And we almost forgot about the flood water seeping into the drywall in the basement - almost.