Wine In Skills
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The 7 Best Styles of Wine to Drink with Pizza
So you have pizza night on the regular and now you need bottle of wine to go with that meat-lover’s number. Over the years I’ve found a number of tried-and-trusted wine styles that have stood the test of time as perfect pizza partners. Here are seven to know! Red or White? Traditionally pizza means a thin, crispy dough base with two key ingredients: tomato sauce and melted cheese. The best wines for pizza take into consideration these ingredients.
Oct 12, 2012
Wine Words: Disgorgement
Disgorgement is a wine word that pertains to Champagne and sparkling wines. Have you ever seen a notice on the back label of some bottles of Champagne saying “disgorged on X date”? Do you know what this means? And why do some bottles carry the notice while other do not? Disgorgement, or dégorgement in French, is a step in making Champagne and other bottle fermented sparkling wines.
Oct 1, 2012
Wine Words: Dosage
Dosage is a wine word specific to the production of Champagne and sparkling wine. It refers to the amount of sugar added to the sparkling wine just before corking, or to the sweetness level of the finished wine.The dosage, or liqueur d’expedition (as it is called in French), is typically a mixture of sugar and wine, though it could just be a sweet wine. The tradition of adding dosage comes from Champagne.
Sep 24, 2012
Wine Words: Tank Method (Charmat Method)
Last week I explained the wine word ‘Traditional Method‘. Tank Method is another wine word, specific to sparkling wine. Tank Method is also know as ‘Cuve Close’ or Charmat Method. Tank Method is a name for a sparkling wine making process. Unlike the ‘Traditional Fermentation’, whereby the second fermentation happens in bottle, in Tank Method it takes place in a large closed pressure tank.
Sep 10, 2012
Why Egg Whites Are Used to Make Wine
Did you know that egg whites play quite an important role in the making of red wine? They work as a fining agent. Interested in finding out more? Read on to find out why and how egg whites are used to help make wine! Most of us expect that when we pour a glass of wine it will be clear and bright. Unfortunately when a wine finishes fermenting it is far from so.
Sep 7, 2012
Wine Words: Traditional Method
Traditional Method (or méthode traditionelle) is a wine word associated with the production of Champagne and other bottle-fermented sparkling wines. It is an official, technical term denoting a specific method and process. It is sometimes referred to as the ‘Classic Method’ (méthode classique), while it used to be called the ‘Champagne Method.’Traditional Method means that the sparkling wine in question was bottle fermented. i.e.
Aug 27, 2012
Wine Words: Bordeaux Blend
How often have you heard a wine described as a ‘Bordeaux blend‘ even when it does not come from Bordeaux, France? “Bordeaux blend’ is a wine term used to describe a wine that is styled on a Bordeaux wine. But do you know what that exactly means?If a wine is described as a Bordeaux blend, it is because it is made from some or all of the grape varieties used to make a Bordeaux wine. While it can refer to a white wine, it is generally used when describing a red wine.
Aug 20, 2012
Wine Words: Non-Vintage
Last week I described the word vintage as it applies to wine. This week’s word is the opposite: non-vintage, often shortened to NV. As a wine word, non-vintage is most often used in regard to Champagne and sparkling wine, as well as many fortified wines like Port, Sherry or Madeira.If a wine does not carry a vintage year, it is generally described as non-vintage, in that the grapes used did not come from a single vintage.
Aug 6, 2012
Wine Words: Vintage
Vintage is a wine word that you frequently hear regarding wine. For the most part it refers to the year the grapes were grown. Most wines carry a vintage year. If a wine carries a vintage year, it means that it was produced from grapes from a single year – i.e single vintage.As well as referring to the year in which the grapes grew to make the wine, the word ‘vintage’ is used to refer to the actual harvest.
Jul 30, 2012
Great Value Wines: The Undiscovered Sparkling Wines of the Loire Valley
As regular readers know, I love bubbles — not just Champagne but a wide range of sparkling wines from all over the world. Following a recent trip to the Loire Valley in France I thought I would share some of the less well-known treasures of the region — the sparkling wines. Delicious Crémant de Loire, Saumur and Vouvray sparkling wines. Perfect for any occasion, and all for $20 (or less).The Loire ValleyThe Loire Valley wine region is large and diverse.
Jun 28, 2012
Wine Words: Variety vs. Varietal
Variety and varietal are two wine words that are so often confused and misused. Unfortunately wine professionals confuse the two as much as everyday wine consumers. Do you know the difference?Variety vs. Varietal: The easiest way to remember the distinction is to remember that one (variety) is a noun and the other (varietal) is an adjective.The word variety refers to the grape variety, grown and used to make the wine such as Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and so forth.
Jun 18, 2012
Wine Words: Sediment
Many wine drinkers have come across little solid particles in their wine at some time. Is the wine flawed? And are they harmful? What are they? No, the wine is not flawed and they are not harmful. Sediments are natural deposits thrown by the wine over time in the bottle.Solid particles in your wine glass or bottle are known as sediment. However, most wines that are destined for early drinking do not throw sediment.
Jun 11, 2012
Wine Words: Color
The first thing we notice about a wine is its color. At its simplest, a wine is red, white or rosé. However, the different nuances of a wine’s color can suggest lots of things about the wine’s age, its grape variety and even how it was made.White winesWhite wines tend to range in color from pale lemon to lemon to varying shades of gold. Young wines often have a slight green hue and quite a watery rim.
May 14, 2012
Wine Words: Balance
Balance is a word you very often hear wine people talk about.Do you ever wonder what it means in the context of a wine? What exactly is a balanced wine?Balance is extremely important in any wine and one of its most sought after characteristics. A wine is balanced when all the different components are working in harmony – a balanced wine is one where no one component protrudes or awkwardly sticks out.
May 7, 2012
Wine Collecting: 10 Tips for Beginners
Have you ever considered starting a wine collection but were unsure how to begin? Here are some useful tips for any readers considering having more than a few dozen bottles around at the one time.If you decide to collect wine, the most important first step is to be clear about your objectives. Are you collecting for your own everyday and future drinking pleasure? Or are you investing in an asset, which you plan to sell at a future date for a profit?
Apr 27, 2012
What is The Best Way to Remove Labels from Wine Bottles?
Q: Do you know how to successfully remove a wine label? As we’re building our wine collection, I’ve been wanting to remove wine labels and keep a journal of them alongside our notes.Sent by ErinEditor: The best method I’ve heard of for preserving the quality of wine labels is to actually bake the empty bottles for about 10 minutes in a 300° F oven. This melts the adhesive and lets you peel the label off (be careful of the hot bottles!).
Apr 26, 2012
Corked Wine: Can It Be Rescued With Plastic Wrap?
There’s nothing worse than opening up a bottle of wine and being hit with the smell of dank, wet cardboard the moment you lift the glass to your nose. It’s corked. Can anything be done? Food scientist Harold McGee shared an intriguing tip for saving corked wine using a piece of plastic wrap.
Apr 26, 2012
Leftover Wine? Make Wine Syrup!
Got a bottle of leftover wine – or perhaps a few, after a party? You could make jelly, or you could turn it into an exquisite sauce for fruit, ice cream, salad dressings, and more.To make wine syrup, you can use a single bottle or mix up the remainders of an assortment of wines. We have only tried it with red wine but white would work, too.
Apr 25, 2012
Freshen Up: Make Sangria with Fresh-Squeezed Fruit, Vegetable & Herb Juices
Sangria is a light, refreshing way to enjoy wine, especially as the weather warms up, but too often the fruity drink ends up sickly-sweet and cloying. That’s why I love the idea of using fresh-squeezed fruit, vegetable and herb juices, which complement the wine without overpowering it. And you don’t necessarily need a juicer: The Chalkboard has some inspiring ideas for spring sangria combinations using fresh-pressed bottled juices.
Apr 24, 2012
Wine Words: Sweetness
What do we mean when we refer to sweetness in a wine? Why are some wines sweeter than others? Where does this sweetness come from? Sweetness in a wine means it contains some residual sugar, measured in g/l, which makes it taste sweet. The process by which wines become sweet is due to one of the following reasons:1. Fermentation stops before all the grape juice (known as the must) sugars have been converted to alcohol.
Apr 16, 2012
Wine Words: Length and Finish
Length and Finish are words often used by wine tasters. What do they mean? And what words might you use to describe them? Length is a tasting term to describe how long the taste of a wine persists or lingers on your palate after you have swallowed (or spit, if tasting professionally) the wine…Length is essentially, as it implies, a measure. A wine’s length may be described as long, moderate or short. In general, a long length is considered a sign of high quality.
Apr 2, 2012
Wine Words: Texture
What do we mean when we talk about the texture of a wine? What words might we use to describe a wine’s texture ? When we talk about the texture of a wine, we are essentially describing the mouthfeel or tactile sensation on the palate. Read on for some thoughts on describing and characterizing a wine’s texture!I am sure all our readers are familiar with texture when it comes to tasting food. Well, it is the same with wine – that physical sensation in our mouth.
Mar 26, 2012
Wine Words: Minerality
Minerality—a word you hear bandied about by wine tasters and professionals. What exactly is minerality in a wine? What does it taste like? Where does it come from? And, do all wines have it?Defining MineralityUnfortunately there is really no real agreement among wine experts or even wine scientists as to how to define minerality in a wine.
Mar 19, 2012
Wine Words: Flavor
Last week in posting about wine ‘aromas’ I mentioned how wine flavors are closely connected to wine aromas, because when we taste a wine we also absorb its aromas through our retro-nasal passage that connects our mouth to our nose.What do we mean when we talk about flavor in wine?Flavor refers to the taste of a wine in your mouth.
Mar 12, 2012
Wine Words: Aromas
Aromas are a very important component of tasting and enjoying wine. Wine aromas are strongly linked to wine flavors and taste, since when we taste a wine we also absorb its aromas through our retro-nasal passage that connects our mouth to our nose.So what exactly do we mean when we talk about aromas in wine?If we like what we smell, we tend to want to drink the wine. Another key reason that aromas are important is to see if the wine is in good condition.
Mar 5, 2012
Wine Words: Alcohol
Alcohol in wine is created through a process called fermentation, whereby yeasts (either native or selected) convert the sugars in the grape juice into alcohol.But what do we mean when we talk about the word alcohol as it relates to wine? There are so many things implied by the word. Here are a few major issues relating to wine and alcohol.Alcohol and the GovernmentThe level of alcohol in a wine is indicated on the bottle either as degrees or by percentage of volume (written as abv or %).
Feb 27, 2012
Wine Words: Acidity
Do you ever wonder what we mean when we say a wine has high or low acidity? Or when your wine geek friend describes him/herself as an acid guy or girl? What does acidity in a wine taste like?Welcome to the first installment in a new series — wine words. We’ll look at a different word every week and explore what it really means in the context of wine. What are its nuances and unspoken meanings?First up: Acidity.If you have ever tasted a lemon you know what acidity tastes like.
Feb 6, 2012
Budget Wine: 5 Tips to Save You Money on Wine
Happy New Year! The holidays are over. It is January, a month much associated with cutting back and shopping more wisely. Still love your wine? Read on for some great wine shopping tips to help you find the best deals, and save a few dollars.Tip #1 – Buy By the Case and Not By the BottleI have mentioned this a number of times in previous posts. While it might seem extravagant to order a case of wine, you generally get a discount of anything between 10% and 15% by doing so.
Jan 5, 2012
Red Wine Tip: Aerate Inexpensive Red Wine in a Blender
When you open a bottle of red wine, it often needs a little time to open up and breathe. This can take anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours, but what if you simply don’t have that long? Perhaps you forget to open it and then find the wine is too tight, or you have a guest drop by and want to pour out the wine right away? Well, an unexpected kitchen tool can help you out.First, why aerate your wine in the first place?
Jan 4, 2012
Wine or Juice Tumblers Like Those In Italian Restaurants?
Q: For years I have been looking for the short, narrow, juice-glass type wine glasses often used in old school Italian restaurants. My brother loves them and has been asking for them for at least a decade (they are a great space saver in tight city apartments). He’s recently engaged, and I am on a hunt for these glasses.Does anyone have an idea of what I’m looking for and/or where I might find them?Sent by JeniEditor: Jeni, are these close to what you’re looking for?
Dec 9, 2011
Thanksgiving Wine Choosing 101: Helpful Tips
Thanksgiving is upon us again. I am sure all of you are looking forward to relaxed gatherings with friends and family. Small or large, thoughts are not just on the food to be prepared, but also on what wines to serve if you are hosting. Maybe you have been invited to friends and are looking for a nice wine to gift. This should be an enjoyable task, not riddled with anxiety. Read on for some tips and ideas to help you chose confidently and stay within budget.
Nov 17, 2011
Why I Always Have a Bottle of Sherry in My Kitchen
I nearly always have a bottle of dry sherry in my kitchen, and no, it’s not just for tippling while cooking. Here are a few reasons why I keep this lovely, inexpensive wine around all the time: First, a quick refresh of a primer on sherry: Sherry is a fortified wine, meaning that it is fortified with a neutral spirit, which makes it both higher in alcohol and longer-lasting. Sherries range from very sweet to quite dry, and these drier sherries are phenomenally food-friendly.
Nov 1, 2011
Chablis Wine: One of the Finest Expressions of Chardonnay
There is one wine that I find myself constantly coming back to as an all time favorite. It is the white wine Chablis. It has a truly unique steely minerality and strident sense of place. For me Chablis is one of the best manifestations of the Chardonnay grape. Here are some reflections on Chablis, and some bottles to get you started.The Chablis wine region is located in the most northern part of Burgundy, not far from the beautiful city of Auxerre.
Sep 22, 2011
Is Cork the Best Wine Stopper?
When the issue of wine screw caps versus corks comes up, the message often seems to be this: metal caps are more practical, but people can’t let go of the romanticism of corks. A recent article on Gizmodo says, forget romanticism. Corks are better in every way. Are they right?Writer Rachel Swaby points out that cork has been successfully stoppering bottles for thousands of years.
Sep 14, 2011
Chianti Rufina: A Jewel of Italy’s Best Known Wine Region
Before you read Mary’s post below, we wanted to let you know that Mary, our dear wine writer, is to be hugely congratulated today. This week she received the good news that she has passed the final hurdle to receive her Master of Wine degree. This is a huge achievement, one possessed by only about 300 people worldwide. You can see her Masters of Wine profile here. Congratulations Mary! I am sure most of our readers are familiar with the wines of Chianti in Tuscany.
Sep 8, 2011
Mixer Math: How To Calculate Alcohol Needs for a Party
Figuring out how many bottles of wine you need for a small dinner party might be easy, but what about planning for a large event like a wedding reception or a family reunion? Here are some guidelines for calculating how much wine, beer, and liquor you’ll need for a party, no matter the size.First, figure out how many drinks you’ll need for the duration of the party.
Aug 12, 2011
Picpoul de Pinet from the Languedoc: Delicious, Racy & Great Value Wines
One of my all time favorite summer sippers has got to be Picpoul de Pinet, the deliciously crisp, refreshing white wine from the Languedoc region in France. Even more wonderful is the price point, as most Picpoul de Pinet wines retail for $9 to $12.The Picpoul de Pinet wine region is in the Languedoc. Just west of the Mediterranean, it is roughly triangular in shape with the historic, and beautiful cities of Agde, Sète and Pézenas as its points.
Aug 4, 2011
Wine Labeling Laws & Regulations: Do You Care?
Next week I am giving a seminar on the new European Union wine reforms and new wine labeling regulations. As I have been researching the subject I began to wonder how much this all matters to consumers. When you head out to buy a bottle of wine, does the official quality designation or quality symbol on the wine matter and does it influence your choice to buy or not to buy?The production and labeling of wine is highly regulated.
Jul 28, 2011
Chilled Tawny Port: Refreshing, Relaxing, Different
You may wonder why I am writing about Port and calling it a refreshing summer drink. Most people consider Port a winter drink, to be enjoyed curled up by the fireside. Well, not necessarily so. One of my favorite summer drinks is actually chilled Tawny Port. In fact the Portuguese themselves have long been known to enjoy this invigorating tipple on a hot summer’s day.What Is Port?Let me explain Tawny Port in the context of all Port wines. Firstly, Port is a protected designation.
Jul 14, 2011
Wine From a Barrel: Wine on Tap from Deloach Vineyards
I’ve written quite a bit about the increasing quality of bag-in-box wines. But is a box of wine not quite classy enough for you? Well then, how about a barrel instead? Deloach Vineyards has gone a step further in consumer-friendly wine packaging with its new Barrel-to-Barrel wine program. Your own barrel of wine?
Jul 7, 2011
Unexpected Pairings: Wines to Drink with Doughnuts & Slim Jims
Snacking on a handful of potato chips instead of a carefully-prepared plate of expensive cheeses and charcuterie doesn’t mean you have to forgo drinking a glass of well-matched wine, at least according to Ray Isle, Food & Wine’s executive wine editor. On the CNN Eatocracy blog, he reveals which wines to pair with doughnuts, Slim Jim’s — even Spaghetti-O’s!
Jul 6, 2011
Old World & New World Wines: What’s the Difference?
I am sure that most of you have used, or at least heard bandied about, terms such as ‘Old World’ or ‘New World’ when talking about wines. What do these terms really mean? How did they originate? Do they matter? Read on to find out more.
Jun 16, 2011
Yes, You Can Drink Wine With Birthday Cake. Here’s How!
It is Birthday Week on The Kitchn. This set me thinking about how easy (or difficult) it is pairing wine and birthday cake. It is probably not something you automatically consider, but believe me, it can be fun. Chocolate, coffee, vanilla, strawberry, or coconut cream — birthday cakes come in all sorts of flavors and textures — so there is a lot of scope to have fun playing around with different wines. What are some of your favorites?
May 19, 2011
Party Tip: Use Zipper Pulls Instead of Wine Glass Charms
Wine glass charms have a practical purpose (to prevent you from accidentally sipping from your boss’s girlfriend’s rosé at a party). But I find most of them inherently twee, if not downright ugly. Don’t get me wrong — many are colorful, swirly and cute, but they usually feel like something a 12-year old-girl would draw in her notebook in class while day-dreaming. Personally, I am looking for something a bit punchier, not to mention cooler, for a more grow-up party.
May 10, 2011
Grüner Veltliner: Austria’s Most Popular White Wine
I have been writing for The Kitchn for almost three years and cannot believe that I have never dedicated a full post to one of our favorite go-to wines – Austrian Grüner Veltliner. It has become a staple in our house for its deliciousness and versatility. How many of our Kitchn readers are also ‘Grüner’ fans?Grüner Veltliner is Austria’s most important white grape variety, accounting for around one third of all white grapes planted.
Mar 31, 2011
Vin Santo: The Perfect Sweet Wine for Christmas Cookies
Cookie Week at The Kitchn has made me think about what wine I would ideally like to sip while enjoying some delicious homemade holiday cookies. Conjuring up memories of sweet mince pies, gingerbread and plum pudding, the first wine that came to mind was Vin Santo — Tuscany’s famous dessert wine.Vin Santo is a sweet wine made from dried grapes. It is typically made from the local white grapes Malvasia and Trebbiano, although sometimes some proportion of Sangiovese grapes are included.
Dec 16, 2010
Winemaking 101: How White Wine Is Made
Ever wonder, as you sip that glass of Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, how it was made? Fermented grape juice of course. But what does that mean? And what choices are made along the way? Here’s a bird’s eye view of how wine is made, from start to finish. The first decision is when to harvest. The longer the grapes are left to ripen on the vine the more sugars accumulate in the grapes. When to harvest depends on many things.
Oct 28, 2010
Know Your German Riesling Wine Regions: Mosel, Rheingau, & Pfalz
In previous posts I’ve discussed German Riesling in general as well as the many different styles and levels of sweetness available within German wine law. This week, style and sweetness aside, I am going to focus on the differences that exist between the various German wine-growing regions with particular focus on the Mosel, Rheingau and Pfalz areas. Want to know more?Riesling is the lynchpin of the German wine industry.
Oct 14, 2010
Who Loves German Riesling Wines?
As you read this post, I am in the midst of a visit to the Mosel, Rheingau and Pfalz wine-regions in Germany. I have had a love affair with German Riesling for over ten years, so this is a great week. Unlike Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio, which seem to have broad appeal, Riesling, especially German Riesling, seems to fall into two very distinct and separate camps — those who absolutely love the wines and those who cannot take them at all. Which camp do you sit in?
Sep 16, 2010
Just Add Water: Trying McGee’s Experiments With Wine
I read with huge interest Harold McGee’s article in last week’s Dining section of The New York Times, about how adding water to a variety of alcoholic drinks — including wine — can enhance flavor. While the theory and examples were compelling, I just had to experiment myself. When we add water to something we usually do so to dilute rather than concentrate.
Aug 5, 2010
Reserva, Riserva, Reserve: What Do They Mean for Wine?
These terms: Reserva, Riserva, Reserve, Grand Reserve, Vintner’s Reserve and so forth — what exactly do they mean on a wine label? And is there any consistency between them? Simply answered, these terms mean different things, depending on the origin of the wine. Old World Wines In general, the use of these terms in the old world is fairly regulated. Firstly, it is supposed to indicate a superior wine, a wine made from riper grapes, resulting in a higher minimum alcohol.
Mar 25, 2010
Cooking with Alcohol: The Science Behind the Scenes!
You learn something new every day! We’ve always thought that using a splash of wine to deglaze a pan or adding beer to a braise was just about boosting flavors and adding some intrigue to our dishes. Well, according to an article in the latest issue of Fine Cooking, there’s actually something more going on in there!This article explains that alcohol actually enhances the flavor of foods in two ways.
Mar 9, 2010
Burgundy Wines: Demystified and Affordable
When it comes to wine, for many people Burgundy represents the ‘Holy Grail’. Elegance, pristine fruit and perhaps some of the greatest terroir expression in the wine world. But isn’t Burgundy horribly expensive and very complicated? Read on to find out more about the myths, the realities and some wonderful affordable wines.The reality is that high-end Burgundy wines, such as Grand Cru or Premier Cru wines, are very expensive.
Mar 4, 2010
Can I Also Store Food in My Wine Refrigerator?
Q: My partner and I live in a small NYC apartment. One thing we couldn’t part from when we moved here was our 50-bottle wine refrigerator. It keeps a temperature of around 45-47 degrees. Half of it is always empty and we were thinking of putting some food items in here – what do you suggest?Our thoughts run from artisan cheeses, potatoes, onions, garlic, fruits…?Sent by MichaelEditor: Michael, you can definitely double-task your wine refrigerator for certain food items.
Feb 24, 2010
Italian White Wines and Harold McGee’s Octopus Recipe Wine Pairings
After savoring the succulence of perfectly cooked octopus in Greece and Spain, cooking octopus has been on my to-do list, as I wanted to have some wine-pairing fun. I am an amateur cook that will attempt almost anything, but somehow the octopus challenge remained on the to-do list for quite a while. Until January 2010, when accidentally (or should I say serendipitously), I bought two whole, raw octopi!Early January I headed to London for my wine studies.
Feb 18, 2010
Oaked White Wine: Dated, Timeless, or on a Comeback?
The late 80’s and 90’s were boom years for big, oaky white wines, especially Chardonnay. Over the past decade, it has been all about unoaked whites, with Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc taking center stage. Is oaked white wine still a timeless classic? Largely outdated? Or is it primed for a strong comeback? What are your views?Oaked white wines were all the rage 10 to 15 years ago. All those creamy, spicy vanilla aromas and flavors were delicious. These wines made bold statements.
Jan 21, 2010
How Can I Store Leftover Wine (and How Long?)
Q: I had a party and we opened a bunch of bottles of wine. How do I not waste that wine? I’m drinking as much as I can (Haha — I don’t want to waste any!) but there’s only so much I can drink or use in sauce before it goes bad.Any ideas? Can I freeze it? How long will wine be good for in cooking before it goes bad?Sent by CherieEditor: Cherie, first of all, we have to admit we’re pretty cavalier about wine for cooking.
Jan 13, 2010
An Easy Guide to Choosing Lower Alcohol Wines
The feasting and festivities of the holidays is over. Having over-indulged, many of us have made resolutions to cut back on or cut out certain foods and alcohols during January. So how can we reduce our alcohol intake, whilst still enjoying a glass or two of wine? Obviously, one way to cut back on alcohol intake is to stop drinking it. However, if like me you enjoy the way wine enhances food, and vice versa, here are some options. Look out for lower alcohol wines.
Jan 7, 2010
The Real Face of Zinfandel Wine: Dark and Dry
Red Zinfandel, or the ‘real’ Zinfandel, is regarded as the quintessential California wine. Incredibly popular and delicious, Zinfandel wines are perfect for a host of fun gatherings. It is no wonder it is considered California’s heritage grape.Despite the proliferation of ‘White Zin’ – the very popular pink, slightly sweet wine – Zinfandel is actually a red grape, capable of producing some of California’s most distinctive and enjoyable wines.
Sep 24, 2009
Escape to Greece: Great Wines from The Peloponnese
I have just returned from a breathtaking wine trip to Greece, where I visited the wine regions of the Peloponnese and Santorini. With a winemaking history that dates back over 4000 years, unique soils and micro-climates, and over 300 indigenous grape varieties, it is little wonder that wine drinkers around the world are embracing Greek wines so enthusiastically. Cook up some Greek food and find yourself a great bottle of Greek wine for an easy escape to this beautiful land.
Jul 16, 2009
Food Science: Artichokes and Sweetness
Did you know that artichokes can make other foods taste sweet? We’ve never noticed this ourselves, but an article in the March issue of Saveur Magazine mentioned the fact in relation to pairing artichokes and wine. Now we can’t wait to get our hands on some fresh spring artichokes to see for ourselves!The article explains that artichokes naturally contain an acid called cynarin.
Mar 31, 2009
Affordable Wines for Gift Giving: Red and Sweet Wines
I hope you enjoyed last week’s sparkling and white wine holiday gift recommendations. This week, it’s time to move on to red and sweet wines. Whatever your budget, whatever the occasion, there are so many interesting wines to choose from that make great gifts. Happy shopping!Red wines probably form the backbone of any gathering around food. As with last week’s wines I have been keeping special notes all year on wines that I feel would make great holiday gifts.
Dec 18, 2008
Does Putting a Spoon into Champagne Keep it Bubbly?
You may have heard the one about putting the end of a silver spoon down into an open bottle of champagne. The story goes that it keeps a bottle bubbly for days after you pop the cork. We’ve done it—many times. And you know what? The champagne does stay bubbly until at least the next day, but not for the reason you think…Turns out the spoon has nothing to do with it. Robert L.
Oct 23, 2008
Wine: All About Fair Trade Wine
While Fair Trade wine has been available in Europe since 2003, it was only in 2007 that the first Fair Trade wines became available in the United States.Like other Fair Trade products, Fair Trade wine means that the wine was produced in a fair and humane way, to meet the Internationally recognized Fair Trade standards. Farmers are treated with respect, paid a decent wage, and the grapes are cultivated in an environmentally sustainable manner.
Oct 9, 2008
Wine Bottle Closures: Cork vs. Screw Cap
Do wine closures matter to you? When buying a bottle of wine are you influenced by the type of closure? Do you consider screw caps to contain cheaper or lower quality wine? Have you embraced screw caps or are you a die-hard devotee to cork?At its simplest the closure on a wine bottle must keep the wine in and oxygen out. Tradition, regulations, cost, the style of wine, and consumer acceptability all influence the closure selected by the producer.
Sep 4, 2008
Wines for Hot and Spicy Foods
Do you ever wonder why so many people automatically reach for a beer to go with African, Asian, or Caribbean foods? Answer: Beer is refreshing, and does not clash with the many feisty, fiery flavors of chilies, herbs and spices that are the signature of these many and varied cuisines.
Aug 21, 2008