Kuster Dental: Food & Wine

Archive for the ‘Drinks’ Category

A Textbook Wine

Posted on: June 4th, 2013 by James No Comments

While at the Phoenix Hotel in San Francisco over the weekend I ventured into the attached Chambers Eat + Drink for an after dinner glass of wine.  From their extensive listing I chose a glass of the 2011 Textbook Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.  The wine was big, bold, and a joy to drink. The was a small hint of jamminess on the front end and then the finish had a touch of oakiness.  Very enjoyable.

Zin Just Might Be My Favorite

Posted on: September 4th, 2012 by James No Comments

I’ve noticed that I’ve posted about some really nice zinfandel wine finds here, probably more than any other varietal.  Well, I’m doing it again.  Last Friday evening at the neighborhood wine tasting the Rosenblum Zinfandel Cuvee XXXIII was being poured.  This is a nice blend of 88% zinfandel and 12% petite syrah.  As seems to be the case with most wines I drink, I judge them against their drinkability with pasta and pizza, and this particular blend does not disappoint.  I look forward to being able to serve this up at the next movie and pizza night at home!

My New Everyday Wine?

Posted on: August 2nd, 2012 by James No Comments

Beso de Vino!

Here is a fun wine that $10 is a very nice every day, drinkable wine.  With a nice blend of 85% syrah, and 15% garnacha, Beso de Vino from Spain could quickly become a staple in my cellar.  Plus, how could anyone resist the cute bull kissing a glass of wine on the label?

Gin Raisins – An Arthritis Remedy?

Posted on: July 10th, 2012 by James No Comments

My father told me about this new treatment he’s taking to help his arthritic knee.  He is eating ten (not 9 and not 11) golden raisins every day that have been soaked in Bombay Sapphire Gin.  He was quite adamant that the raisins had to be golden ones and not regular and the gin had to be Bombay Sapphire and not some other variety.  This sounds like something one of his octogenarian buddies made up as an excuse to drink gin without actually drinking.  He could not explain to me what was magical about Bombay Sapphire that endowed golden raisins with healing properties.  If anyone can offer up an explanation, I’m dying to hear them.

Bombay Raisins


2 cups

Active Time

5 minutes

Total Time

24 hours



1 15 oz Sun Maid California Golden Raisins

Bombay Sapphire gin



  1. Spread the raisins evenly on a jelly roll pan or similar a single raisin deep.
  2. Pour enough gin over the raisins until they are just covered.
  3. Let the raisins soak, approximately one day, until all of the gin is either absorbed or evaporated.

A Really Silky Zin

Posted on: July 3rd, 2012 by James No Comments

Frie Brothers 2009 Dry Creek Valley Reserve Zinfandel

I was at a wine dinner the other night at Christian’s Bistro in Plover, Wisconsin and one of the wines that was served was the 2009 Frei Brothers Dry Creek Valley Reserve Zinfandel.  This wine was exceptionally silky and a true delight to drink.  I agree with Frei Brothers Tasting Note description that the wine, “…displays classic fruit flavors…” with, “… a finish [that] is elegant and mouth-coating.”

During the dinner the wine was paired with Grilled Angus Steak Medallions with a smoked wild mushroom risotto, smothered greens and oxtail bone marrow reduction.  While this wasn’t my favorite of the six courses that were served that evening, I thought the food and wine played well with one another.  I’m definitely going to look for this wine in my local wine store.

A Refreshing Twist to the Martini

Posted on: May 29th, 2012 by James No Comments

I love basil.  I use it all the time in my cooking.  I was at a friend’s for a cookout over the holiday weekend and he served this amazing basil martini.  It was so crisp and refreshing, especially on a very hot day, that I just had to share.  This will definitely become a summertime favorite!

Lemon Basil Martinis


7 servings

Active Time

20 minutes

Total Time

1 hour 20 minutes



1 ¼ cups superfine sugar

¾ cup loosely packed fresh lemon basil leaves, torn into pieces

1 ¼ cups fresh lemon juice

¾ cup fresh lime juice

1 ¾ cups vodka

Crushed Ice

Garnishes: Lemon Zest Curls



  1. Bring sugar and 1 cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.  Boil, stirring often, 1 minute or until sugar is dissolved and mixture is clear.  Remove from heat; add torn basil, and cool completely (about 1 hour).  Remove and discard basil. Stir in juices; pour into a pitcher or glass jar.  Cover and chill thoroughly.
  2. For each martini, combine ½ cup chilled sweet-and-sour syrup mixture and ¼ cup vodka in a cocktail shaker; fill with crushed ice.  Cover with lid, and shake vigorously until thoroughly chilled (about 30 seconds).
  3. Strain into a chilled martini glass.  Garnish, if desired.

Margaritas Just In Time 4 Cinco de Mayo!

Posted on: May 3rd, 2012 by James No Comments

Okay, I know normally only talk about food and wine in this blog, but margaritas are also one of our favorite beverages.  Just in time for Cinco de Mayo, which conveniently falls on a Saturday this year, the Wall Street Journal published several delicious sounding margarita recipes in their Off Duty section last weekend.

While we’ve not yet had a chance to try any of these elixirs, we plan on giving them a good tasting on Saturday.  We’re particularly fond of the way the Breakfast Margarita and The Classic Margarita sound!

Mastering The Margarita

by Kevin Sintumuang

IN SPANISH, margarita means “daisy.” But in North America, I believe the translation is closer to “super fun time.”

Totally fine to think of the cocktail that way, but let’s put down the ready-made, Day-Glo sour mix, step away from the margarita machine and take the drink seriously for just a moment. The margarita may conjure images of spring break in Cancún and fishbowl glasses with cactuses as stems or yardstick-long containers filled with boozy slush. But the cocktail is so much more than that.  more