Like most people I know, I hit the ground running early. About 6AM most days. And I don’t stop until six or seven in the evening. At that point the things that matters most to me? Dinner. Unwinding. Pleasure.
In a nutshell, this site represents my desire to end each day with a dinner that is not only delicious, and a reward for a hard day’s work, but also something I can feel good about from a health standpoint.
After more than a decade of learning about and writing about wine — including a somewhat arduous, and not inexpensive, three-year WSET diploma, I now just want to enjoy wine. And beer. And cocktails. And spirits. And I want to enjoy them with delicious, balanced meals.
So now, in 2013, I’m starting 101 Pairings to be able to focus on the things that interest me now.
The name? Well, for me it has two meanings. First, at any given moment, I have about 101 drink options lying about. From wine and beer, to liquor, cocktails and beyond, a robust selection awaits. I also like turning the primer, educational meaning of “one-o-one” back to front. This site is not particularly meant to teach or impart expertise. It’s more of a personal journal of discovery and pleasure, as I explore and cook, taste and pair, and record the results. In the process, I hope to learn new ways of thinking about pairings, experiment with cooking that focuses on (mostly) plant-based ingredients, document the ups and downs of it all, and hopefully make pairing food and wine/spirits/beer approachable and less intimidating for anyone who happens to read about it here.
A word about what I’ll be cooking: After flirting with eating less meat at various times in my life, these days I rarely eat it at all. Almost never at home, but for the occasional good quality canned/jarred tuna or sardines. And at restaurants, I tend to go for seafood if a vegetarian or vegan option doesn’t appeal. But if a friend or family member has prepared dinner, I have a difficult time refusing to eat whatever they’ve cooked. It just feels odd and a little rude, and besides, sometimes it’s really tasty. So for the most part, 101 Pairings will feature vegetarian or vegan dishes, but I’m not completely swearing off any exceptions.
Update (December 2013): Something about this winter’s cold weather has awakened the carnivore in me, it seems. Poultry of all kinds, for sure. Even the occasional steak. I’m not questioning it — just going with it. We’ll see how this evolves…
I’m Robyn Tinsley. I’m a Houston-based owner of a PR and marketing company, writer, enthusiastic owner of a lovely Canon camera – and creator of 101 Pairings. I like to travel, often to food/drink destinations, but when I’m home I tend to cook and drink and hang out with friends and family. Along the way, I founded and built WineSkinny.com, which ran for a bunch of years, and is still lingering “out there” until I figure out what to do with all that content. I’ve also collected a few wine certifications and diplomas, including the first level of the Court of Master Sommelier program, Certified Specialist of Wine with the Society of Wine Educators. And in 2011 I completed the Wine & Spirits Education Trust diploma (Dip WSET).
Samples & Shipping
I do accept samples of food and drink products for possible review/inclusion in a post on this site. Items can be sent to my office at:
2935 Ferndale, Suite 200
Houston, TX 77098
Please consider using express delivery, as it can be quite warm in Houston year-round. Detailed product information and retail pricing information are always appreciated! Email me with questions.
Note: I’m heavy into recycling all the cardboard boxes and egg carton packaging I receive. So if you can avoid sending styrofoam, I’d appreciate it! (As would the planet…)