Father's Day originated in 1909 when a woman named Sonora Dodd came up with the idea. Mrs. Dodd's father, William Jackson Smart, had raised her and her five siblings after their mother died in childbirth. While listening to a Mother's Day sermon at a church near her family's home in eastern Washington State, Mrs. Dodd thought about the sacrifices her father had made for his children and the fine job he had done in raising them. Because her father had been born in June, she decided to encourage the churches in her area to honor fathers in June. Through her efforts, the first Father's Day was celebrated in Spokane, Washington, in June 1910.
Although Congress passed several resolutions over the years in support of Father's Day, it did not become an official U.S. holiday until 1972, when then-President Nixon issued a proclamation declaring the third Sunday in June as Father's Day in the United States.
Ramirez de la Piscina 'Santa Maria de la Piscina' Gran Reserva, Rioja, Spain 2001 $39
The great Spanish wine region of Rioja is exciting, in part, because of its fascinating blend of tradition and modernity. Ramirez de la Piscina sums this nexus up nicely. The family has been making wine for four generations, and traces its roots back to the Middle Ages, the 'de la Piscina' referring to an ancestor who was involved in the taking of Jerusalem in the First Crusade, assaulting the city walls by the Pool of Bethesda. At the same time, their winery, which once fermented in old stone tanks, now uses temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks with automated pump-over systems for fullest fermentation and optimal colour and tannin extraction. The fruit itself comes from family vineyards in the traditionally great subregion of Rioja Alta, with its ideal soil types and water deprived vineyards, and is picked by hand--but in a modern twist, the Gran Reserva is composed entirely of the great tempranillo grape. After sitting in barrels for two years and in bottles for at least three more, in the winery's underground cellars, the result is a wonderfully balanced wine, with an intense nose of spice and violets, tastes of dark cherries and currants and a hint of tamari, with a really elegant texture--plenty of tannin and acidity from this great vintage make it a great food wine, and capable of aging--if you can wait!