The Right Bottle Of White For A Hot Summer Day

July 8, 2009

Some summer wine recommendations.

Chardonnay is not the only chilled glass of white wine to treasure in the summer heat. Many other varietals offer the invigorating crisp flavors and balanced acidity enhance warm weather meals. It is also worth exploring the shelves to find treasures and the occasional bargain from less familiar regions.

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Wines To ‘Steak’ A Claim With

January 29, 2009

Buccella Cabernet Sauvignon

Wines perfect to pair with a grilled rib-eye.

One of the ways we coax our son to visit us from college is to prepare his favorite meal: a grilled rib-eye steak prepared with CharCrust Hickory rub. And now that he is 21 years old, we also have to find the perfect wine to match the steak. Rather than figuring this out for myself, I solicited expert advice from the folks responsible for the wines at several of Washington, D.C.’s finest steak restaurants.

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Choose Young Wines For Feasting

November 20, 2008

Helfrich Reisling

Wine suggestions for Thanksgiving.

Think young when choosing a wine for the Thanksgiving feast. The meal’s complex variety of aromas, flavors and textures are best complimented by a fruity, youthful wine with refreshing acidity. Resist the temptation to serve an aged treasure to family and friends since the typical fare can easily overwhelm their subtle flavors and make more tannic wines such as Cabernet taste unpleasantly astringent. The half-hour rule applies; remove the white wines from the refrigerator and refrigerate the red ones 30 minutes before serving to bring out their best characteristics.

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Local Wineries Deserve More Respect

October 14, 2008

Black Ankle Crumbling Rock

A look at some Maryland wineries.

Many regionally produced wines are as good as their West Coast cousins, although consumers often overlook them. With wine being made in all 50 states, it is fitting that attention be paid to the accomplishments of these small wineries.

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Grapes From Cool Climes Produce Subtle Wines

July 19, 2006

Omrah Shiraz

A review of some cool-climate grown wines.

Grapes grown in cooler climates have significantly different flavor profiles than those from warmer areas.‘‘Cooler-climate wines are not fruit driven,” says importer Robert Whale. ‘‘They are more subtle. While still expressing the essence of the varietal, these wines have elegant flavors and are more food-friendly.” Whale, a tireless advocate of cooler-climate wines, insists that ‘‘there is more to Australian wine than big fruit bomb Shiraz from the Barossa.”

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Bright, Refreshing Summer Wines

June 16, 2005

Rodney Strong Chardonnay

Some summer wine recommendations.

Summer is the time to put away the heavy, winter wines and pick up wines appropriate for the warmer weather. Look for white wines that have bright flavors balanced with enough acid to make the wine crisp and refreshing so it pairs well with warm weather foods. Summer red wines should have great fruit flavors without a lot of complexity or power.

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Wine Writer’s Tour Reveals Choice Chilean Vineyards

May 18, 2005

Veramonte Sauvignon Blanc

Wine recommendations from my recent visit to Chile.

One of the nicest people to share a bottle of wine with is Alfredo Bartholomaus, founder of Billington Imports. His generous nature and depth of knowledge impressed everyone on a recent wine writer’s trip he led to Argentina and Chile. The gregarious poetry lover with a warm smile and an easy manner emigrated from Chile 20 years ago to establish a company dedicated to bringing South American wines to the U.S. market. His portfolio now includes wines from Chile, Argentina, Spain and New Zealand. He searches for high-quality, value-priced wines, and both new and established wineries seek his guidance.

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Alsace Region Produces Some Of France’s Best Wines

July 22, 2004

Alsace makes some terrific wines.

Hot weather calls for cool wines. And some of the best wines to serve this time of the year are the white wines produced in the Alsace region of France. Located on France’s eastern border, the Alsace region has, at various times, been a part of Germany, which explains the “un-French” sounding names of some of the Alsace wine producers. Since the end of World War I, Alsace has remained a part of France and its wines are some of the best made in the country.

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Lighter, Crisper Wines For Summer Dining

July 1, 2004

Cousino-Macul Dona Isadora

Some summer wine suggestions.

Summer is a great time to try different wines. “People move away from the oaky chardonnays and heavy reds when the warm weather arrives,” said Marty Meyrowitz, the owner of The Wine Harvest, “they prefer lighter, crisper whites and fruitier reds.” These types of wines have the acidity to be refreshing and to hold up to summer foods such as salads and barbeques. A large number of inexpensive wines perfect for summer entertaining are made from regions all over the world. In white wines, look for crisp acidity that tastes clean and refreshing. The red wines should be simple, young, and fruity. And be sure to chill both types of wine before serving.

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