Dwight Casimere

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Wine of the Week: Lynfred Winery in Roselle, IL - A Local legend in the making

Illinois has a thriving wine industry and, thanks to Fred E. Koehler, founder of Lynfred Winery in Roselle, the wines have garnered national attention and several prestigious awards. Perhaps you’re already familiar with Lynfred Winery's tasting rooms, Tasting deVine, which originated in Wheaton in 1999, followed by the Tasting deVine Cellars in the basement at 21 W. Jefferson Ave in Naperville, which opened in 2004, followed by a new tasting room in Wheeling in 2008. Lynfred Winery in Roselle is an impressive facility. The grapes are imported from California, then vinified and cellared in a state-of-the-art facility that has expanded by leaps and bounds. With a complete line of red, white, sparkling, fruit wines, ports and ice wines, there's no end to the dynamic range of tasting experiences at Lynfred. The story began in 1975 when Fred and his late wife Lynn began making wine in the basement of their home. What began as a hobby quickly grew out of hand, and the Koehler's decided to go commercial, establishing the first winery in Illinois in 1975. What began with just 7 varieties and 5,000 gallons of wine has grown to more than 80 varieties and 100,000 gallons of wine a year.

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Wine of the Week – 2015 Wente Eric’s Small Lot Chardonnay - $25

Went 2015 Eric's Small Lot Chardonnay is a tribute to the art of winemaking. The grapes for the Small Lot wine are hand harvested from selected blocks of estate grown and certified sustainable vineyards. Influenced by the warm days and cool nights of t he San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean, the grapes are picked at their optimum and sorted at harvest to ensure premium quality. Fermented at cold temperatures in stainless steel tanks in order to retain the optimal fruit character, aromatics and flavor, the wine is then aged for four months in stainless steel tanks. No oak touches this wine, therefore the pristine flavor of the grapes and their juice is preserved. The resulting wine is a masterpiece. Eric Wente is a Fourth Generation Winegrower. Founded in 1883, Wente is the nation's oldest continuously operated family-owned winery. Owned and managed by the Fourth and Fifth Generations of the Wente family, the winery draws from nearly 3,000 acres of sustainably farmed estate vineyards in some of California's prime wine producing areas; Livermore Valley, San Francisco Bay, Arroyo Secco, and Monterey.

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96 Souls in select theaters and on VOD

dcasimere@thetimesweekly.com What if you could see people's inner souls and discern their true thoughts and intentions? That's exactly the premise of winter/director Stanley Jacob's 96 Souls now playing in selected theaters around the country and available on all VOD platforms May 30. Research scientist Dr. Jack Sutree (Grinnel Morris) has a lab accident while developing a compound that allows one to see smells, which can somehow be used in the fight against malaria and other deadly diseases. Exposed to his creation, he can suddenly visualize smells. He is further impacted when the ashes of his dead dog are blown into his eyes and he suddenly develops the superhuman power to see people's inner lives. The results are wacky and make for an entertaining hour and fifty some-odd minutes of viewing. It t makes a while to get into the concept, but its just kookie enough to gram your attention long enough to be a willing participant in the madcap ride. Dr. Sutree sets about patching up things with his estranged wife, helping a homeless woman find her lost mother, and screening the jury members in an upcoming trial against his research lab's corrupt corporate founders.

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Wines of Greece Kissed by the Summer Sun

wine@thetimesweekly.com Greece is one of the oldest wine producers in the world. In fact, it was the Greeks who brought wine to Rome. Therefore, its somewhat surprising that when wines of Greece presented its Grand Tasting at City Winery is New York and Chicago in advance of a national rollout, they were being greeted by both the public and the media as "something new." After tasting some 40 of the latest vintages from producers representing all of the country's wine growing regions, it was evident that Wines of Greece are well crafted, with a unique flavor profile that is both fun and food friendly. Tasting Greek wines is an instant education in the country's unique terroir and grape varieties. Names such as Moschofilero (mo-sko-feel-ero) from Mantinia located the high plains of the Peloponnese peninsula, where this pink-skinned grape reigns supreme, or Agiorginko (a-yor-gee-tiko), which translates to St. George, in Greek.

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Wine of the Week – LeBolte Dail’

A "Super Tuscan" for under $20? No way, you say. But that's exactly what is happening with Le Volte Dell' Ornelliaia 2015 ($15). The wine is nearly perfect in every way. It has a nice structure and rich fruit. It is the direct beneficiary of one of the best growing years in Tuscany's recent wine history. 2015 was a year that saw a warm, sunny summer, followed by a cool, dry harvest in the fall. The resulting wine had a deep Ruby red color with flavors of ripe blackberries and dark cherries with a hint of black peppercorn and sage.

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Goodman Theatre World Premiere Objects In The Mirror

Times Weekly gives it 4 stars

If someone told you the harrowing story of African-born actor Shedrick Yarkpai, you would probably not believe it. Yet, here it is as the subject of a fully staged World Premiere production at Goodman Theatre, Chicago, Objects In The Mirror, by Chicago native playwright Charles Smith and directed by the Goodman's own esteemed Resident Director Chuck Smith (no relation).  Playwright Smith first encountered Yarkpai in 2009 while traveling to the idyllic city of Adelaide, Australia in 2009 for a production of his play A Free Man of Color (the play later premiered on Broadway with the Golden Globe, Tony, Emmy and Drama Desk Award-winning actor Jeffrey Wright in the lead). A young Liberian actor, Shedrick Yarkpai, was slated to play the title role. Over the time of their close working relationship, Yarkpai began to unravel the story of his more than decade-long journey from a refugee campin war-torn Liberia, through the unimaginable brutality, starvation and cruelty of the refugee camps in Guinea and Cote d'Ivoire to finally gaining asylum in Adelaide.

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Wine of the Week: Frescobaldi Alie 2016, The Perfect Rose Wine for Mother’s Day

Frescobaldi Alie 2016 ($18.99) is the perfect wine for Mother's Day Brunch. She, and the rest of your family and guests will absolutely love it. First of all the look is very appealing, coming in an elegantly shaped bottle with a luminous panel pink color that reminds one of coral pearls. It is a wine that has style, not only in appearance, but it its taste as well. Any IGT from Tuscany, it is a different kind of blend of Syrah and Vermentino, grape varieties that benefit greatly from being grown close to the sea, where the wine derives its scents of wildflowers, wild strawberries and a hint of lemon zest with just a wisp of the mineral-laced sea breeze. Served well chilled, it’s the perfect way to start the meal.

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Former Joliet Native Makes Good in Hollywood

Joliet may claim an up-and coming filmmaker as its own. Producer, Director, Writer and Editor Cory Grant was born in Joliet. He has just released his latest film, "Illicit," in the Chicago area. It is currently playing at the Studio Movie Grill, 210 West 87th Street in Chatham Chicago. This isn't Grant's first film outing, but it is certainly his most adventurous. An avowed fan of the horror film genre, "Illicit" is a frank look at the ins and outs of romantic relationships, marriage and the impact of deceit and extra-marital affairs. Illicit takes it to the extreme, and shows what happens when a couple strays apart and winds up teetering on the precipice.

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Wine of the Week: Natura Chardonnay Un-Oaked 2016

Outdoor dining and grilling season is finally here. What better way to celebrate than with a light, fruity un-oaked chardonnay that is both easy to drink. goes with almost anything, and is easy on the pocket. Try Natura Chardonnay Un-Oaked 2016 from Emiliana Organic Vineyards in the Valle del Bio-Bio Chile. At just $9 a bottle, its probably one of the best bargains out there. The flavor is delightful and awesome. Possessing notes of Meyer Lemons, ripe Melons and hints of pineapple in Green Apples, it’s the perfect wine to usher in the spring and summer al fresco dining season. Think summer salads, blending organic vegetables, fresh peas, asparagus and slices of mandarin orange, pineapple and avocado for accents.

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Wine of the Week: Eroica Riesling 2015 - $19 from Washington State’s Chateau St. Michelle

Eroica Riesling ($19) combines Old World technique with modern American attitude. The product of the combined efforts of two winemaking legends, Dr. Ernst Loosen and Washington State's oldest winery, Chateau St. Michelle, the wine has all the finesse and sophistication of a European Riesling with the added dimension of bright, Washington State fruit. The wine is crisp, clean and flavorful with an abundance of ripe pears, fragrant white flowers and hints of tarragon and subtle notes of mandarin orange slices. This is the perfect wine for summer meals on the patio or outdoor cafe.

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