The Joy List
Joy is important. Like really important, especially now when suffering is surfacing at every turn. So, this is what brought me joy this week. Maybe it will bring you some too?
This wine: A bottle of Meinklang from Austria 2020 ($18)
I like wine. This is not a secret. I get most (well, all) of my wine from Smith & Vine because Patrick Watson, the owner, is the best. So, the Meinklang. This is a fantastic, fun, super juicy, garnet colored wine. It's all Pinot Noir, it's biodynamic and organic and has a light fruitiness and soft fizz. Patrick calls it a "guzzler." I think of this as a great breakfast wine which means you can drink it all day. (Not that I've ever done that). At $18 a bottle you really should get a case. It's the only responsible thing to do.
This meal: Meatballs from Pizza Motto.
I know, I know. Meatballs can bring you joy? Yes! Yes they can. Especially these. They are fall apart tender, full of garlic and basil and love and arrive sitting in a pulpy rich tomato ragu. There's just nothing better on a cold night. Get them online here. (Also add a pizza, because Dave makes great pizza, and the smoked trout Caesar salad, because it's the greatest thing ever done to salad.)
This book: The Four Winds, by Kristen Hannah
You've read the Nightingale and The Great Alone? Maybe not. (You should). Author Kristen Hannah's latest drops you into the Dust Bowl during the depression. It echoes strongly to themes of recession and loss today. But it is also a gorgeous ode to the power of mothers and to female bonds and friendship, plus you'll learn a lot about our country during the '30s and what we did to farmers fleeing the Dust Bowl. I could not put it down.
This movie: Judas and The Black Messiah
A gorgeous, thrilling, heart-breaking biopic of Fred Hampton, the chair of the Black Panthers in Chicago. It's beautiful, like Small Axe, gorgeously shot, and brilliant acted by Daniel Kaluuya (who portrays Fred) and who is slain at the hands of William O'Neal (Lakeith Stanfield), an FBI informant. Jesse Plemons, Dominique Fishback, Ashton Sanders, Darrell Britt-Gibson, Lil Rel Howery, Algee Smith, and Martin Sheen also star. The film is directed and produced by Shaka King, who wrote the screenplay with Will Berson, based on a story by the pair and Kenny and Keith Lucas. It's on HBO Max. It is powerful and necessary.
I hope these picks bring you joy. Share it. Sending love you all.