This past week, my wife and I have been enjoying a very special wine from Italy – a Super Tuscan provenance from the Brunello di Montalcino variety. Those who follow me on FaceBook may have seen the post.

Enjoying this wine is always a treat, a rarity, and always a special event. This week we did so mostly by accident…the reasons aren’t important. It did however give me cause to think about the man that introduced me to the grape.

When I was just out of university, living and working in the Midwest, I met a titan of the Recording Studio Industry. A small-framed, character of a man name Murray Allen of Universal Recording Studios Corporation (R.I.P.!) was kind enough to not only purchase millions of dollars of equipment from me and the Japanese company I represented, he dined with me one night at his favorite Italian eatery.

Cognitive Italian Cafe and Market are no longer in downtown Chicago (having moved North to the posh suburb Wilmette, IL (think Ferris Bueller); however, in its heyday, they served sumptuous hand-crafted meals with astonishingly great wine. Murray insisted that I order this bottle to celebrate his latest equipment acquisition from our Company, and indeed – it was a magical wine. Hints of strawberry, coffee, chocolate – just an amazing compliment to the meal.

I haven’t been back to Chicago since the early 2000s, but I think of Murray often. There was no one like him, and the wine he exposed me to, was equally singular. Thank you friend. I miss you still.


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