Mardi Gras WWM logo
Mardi Gras
We never need a reason to have a good time, but since it's Carnival Season we're giving a nod to Mardi Gras!
March 4 is your last day to feast before the fast. So, indulge!
And, try some of these choice wines.
There is no masking their great taste!
Murrieta's Well
2012 Murrieta's Well The Whip 
Livermore, California

The Whip is a tribute to the great white blends of the world; a sophisticated yet approachable blend of aromatic white grapes. Fermented and aged in a combination of stainless steel and neutral barrels, this wine displays full-bodied aromas and flavors of white peach, vanilla, butterscotch and orange blossom with an extended and balanced finish.


Eight varieties combine to make The Whip a smooth, balanced wine: 43% Chardonnay, 15% Gewurztraminer,13% Sauvignon Blanc, 9% Orange Muscat, 8% Viognier 5% Pinot Blanc, 4% Semillon, 3% Muscat Canelli.  



Wine With Me Price: $16.99  


Domaine de Couron
Domaine de Couron
Côtes du Rhône Villages 2010
Rhone, France

Ripe, but well-defined, with lots of blueberry, plum and blackberry fruit melded together, backed by backed by hints of cocoa, warm stone and anise on the solid finish. 20% Grenache, 35% Syrah and 45% Mourvedre. 

Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre (GSM) is a red-wine blend originally from the southern Rhone Valley, but which is now popular in various world wine regions, most notably South Australia's Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale but also California's Central Coast.


French GSM wines tend to be more savory and less powerfully fruity than their Australian counterparts, although they do typically show notes of blackcurrant and sometimes stewed plums. Their trademark aromas are leathery, earthy and meaty. Wines from



Wine With Me Price: $14.99  


Monte Vicor
Montevicor Cava Brut NV

Calatayud, Spain


Montevicor Cava Brut is a sublime blend of Chardonnay and Macabeo that is fruity and off-dry, which makes it easy to love. Spanish Cava, in general, is under the radar and under-appreciated, but this bottling by Montevicor could go a long way toward changing that. It's pure bubbly bliss. The light yellow wine has aromas of lemon, green apple and white flowers, plus a hint of white pepper. Pliant orchard fruit flavors are given a musky quality by notes of bitter herbs and spices, which add back-end bite. Closes with good clarity and grip, the spicy note repeating.


Montevicor, is a Spanish estate named after the Vicor Mountains that dominate the landscape. There, fifth-generation vignerons Juan and Cesar Langa Gonzalez oversee one of the most contemporary cellars in the region, combining tradition and technology to craft some very impressive wines.



Wine With Me Price: $10.99  


Pine Ridge

Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc + Viognier

Napa, California


The 2011 bottling of this distinctive blend opens with a dazzling spectrum of fruit and floral aromas, from crisp white peach, honeyed pear and sweet mango, to touches of fresh jasmine blossom and white chai tea. Filled with bright and juicy fruits, the palate flaunts flavors of succulent white nectarine, candied pineapple, green fig and subtle grapefruit. The crisp and slightly off-dry flavor profile lasts well through the clean and refreshing finish. 



Wine With Me Price: $11.99  


"Anything worth doing is worth overdoing."
--Mick Jagger 

Enjoy your indulgences!

Mark, Ron, Reyna, Barb, Angie, & Sharon

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A Craft Beer & Wine Studio

111 Gigi Gruber Lane

Itasca, Illinois 60143

(847) 250-5041




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Sunday: 2 pm--7 pm

Closed Monday

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Itasca has an 8.25% sales tax.

Just north of town the tax rate is 10%.

Instant $$avings of 1.75% at Wine With Me.

Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images

"Mardi Gras" means "Fat Tuesday." Traditionally, it is the last day for Catholics to indulge--and often overindulge--before Ash Wednesday starts the sober weeks of fasting that come with Lent. Formally known as Shrove Tuesday, Mardi Gras has long been a time of extravagant fun for European Christians. In fact, some people think Mardi Gras celebrations have their source in the wild springtime orgies of the ancient Romans.


In the United States, Mardi Gras draws millions of fun-seekers to New Orleans every year. Mardi Gras has been celebrated in New Orleans on a grand scale, with masked balls and colorful parades, since French settlers arrived in the early 1700s. Hidden behind masks, people behaved so raucously that for decades in the early 19th century masks were deemed illegal in that party-loving city.


Masks, Music, and Mayhem

French royals, feather-covered showgirls, Energizer bunnies, painted clowns, masked lions--you can find them all in the streets of New Orleans at Mardi Gras. By dawn on that most famous Tuesday, people have claimed the best spots on the streets to watch fabulous floats, outrageous performers, and visiting celebrities go by. Many travel hundreds of miles to be a part of the excitement.


Marching bands, some of them founded more than a century ago, also take to the streets with music and festive dress. They open the day by spreading jazz music through the city before the more than 350 floats and 15,000 costumed paraders take over the scene.  


Crazy costumes and wild make-up are the order of the day for paraders and parade-watchers alike. The most lavish get-ups can be seen at the cross-dressing beauty pageants in the French Quarter, where bawdy costuming continually reaches new heights. 

Krewes: New Orleans Royalty

Mardi Gras has long combined wild street activities open to everyone with events organized by private clubs known as krewes. Today, thousands of people belong to about 60 krewes that plan the parades and balls of New Orleans' Mardi Gras. The oldest krewe, the Krewe of Comus, was founded in 1857 by men who feared the outrageous antics of Mardi Gras would lead to the holiday being outlawed. They hoped that secret societies could keep the celebrations alive. The Krewe of Comus withdrew from the parade schedule in 1992 when it refused to sign an ordinance prohibiting racial discrimination.


In 1872 the Russian grand duke Alexis Romanoff visited New Orleans at Mardi Gras. A group of businessmen organized the Krewe of Rex to host a parade for the occasion, and appointed a "king for the day" so that the grand duke could have a royal reception. Naming kings and queens at Mardi Gras balls has been a tradition of the krewes ever since.

Another tradition began with that royal visit: the Romanoff house colors--purple for justice, green for faith, and gold for power--became the official colors of Mardi Gras.


Mardi Gras-3
Photo by Rusty Costanza / Getty-Images

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