Glassware Matters

December 8, 2014

Review of Twin Suns Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 and a cocktail suggestion: The Hot Toddy.

In one of the final scenes of the 2004 multi-Oscar nominated film “Sideways” (it did win for best adapted screenplay) we see Miles—a joyless, glass half-empty type character who has previously declared his disdain for Merlot grape wines—drinking his prized 1961 Château Cheval Blanc in a fast-food joint out of a Styrofoam coffee cup. For most wine connoisseurs, there is a special place in hell reserved for folks who drink wine out of a Styrofoam cup, and for wine geeks in particular, hell doesn’t begin to repay the crime of drinking such a wine out of such a container.

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Technology

December 4, 2014

Reviews of Domaine du Castel Grand Vin 2009 and Bushmills Original Irish Whiskey.

An interesting exhibition at Berlin’s Jewish Museum called “Die Erschaffung der Welt”, or “the Creation of the Word,” includes a work called “bios [torah]” that in some part examines the relationship between technology and man.

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Thanksgiving – A Perfect Time To Try New Wines

November 26, 2014

Wine suggestions to accompany your Thanksgiving Feast.

While Thanksgiving is a time for celebrating family and friends, it is also an opportunity to try some unfamiliar wines. The classic meal of turkey, stuffing and various side-dishes provide a broad palate of flavors, textures and aromas as a starting point for selecting accompanying wines. As with any complex meal, look for wines that have good fruit flavors, refreshing acidity for balance and are not too tannic or oaky.

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Earthquake in Napa

November 24, 2014

Reviews of Covenant “RED C” Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, 2011 and Tito’s Handmade Vodka.

On August 24 an earthquake struck one of California’s most popular winemaking regions injuring over 200 people, and causing at least $100 million in damages. The strongest quake in the area for 25 years and centered just south of the city of Napa, the 6.0 quake even damaged buildings that were specifically retrofitted to resist tremors, and of course led to fires. It is estimated that 60 percent of Napa’s wineries were affected in some fashion by the quake with 25 percent sustaining moderate to severe damage.

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Baroness Philippine de Rothschild

November 20, 2014

This past August saw the passing of Baroness Philippine de Rothschild.

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Wine Bath

November 17, 2014

Reviews of Neve Midbar 2011 and several Glenfarclas Single Highland Malt Scotch Whiskies.

Professional basketball star Amar’e Stoudemire, who proudly proclaims an ill-defined Jewish heritage of some sort—“I am a Hebrew through my mother” is how he put it in 2010, though his agent was quick to note “but he is not [Jewish]. He thinks there may be some Jewish blood on his mother’s side and he is researching it”—has added something called “vinotherapy” to his post-workout recovery program. Sounds like code for simply getting buzzed on wine, right? Well, not in this instance.

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Green Wine

November 3, 2014

Reviews of the Aveleda Grinalda 2012 and two Old Pulteney Single Malt Scotch Whiskies.

It is not yet, thankfully, too cold for us to be able to enjoy a warm weather wine from Portugal: Vinho Verde (pronounced “veen-yo vehrd”). The name translates to “green wines.” Vinho Verde is not a grape varietal. The “green” is meant as “young” as in they should be consumed young in order to best appreciate their vibrant fruit flavors.

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What Wines Did King David Drink?

October 28, 2014

Reviews of Shiloh Legend II 2010 and several Speyburn Single Malt Scotch Whiskies.

Although the biblical texts are replete with references to wine, the exact varietals employed to create these libations remain a mystery. From the seventh century Islamic conquest of the region until the rebirth of the modern Israeli wine industry in the late 1800s, wine production in Israel was essentially dormant. Consequently, the indigenous wine grape varietals were largely lost. Currently, the grape varietals being widely grown in Israel are mostly European imports, including such familiar names as Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Riesling, Chardonnay and Syrah.

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A Little Bit Of The Bubbly

October 20, 2014

A look at the complexity of US whiskey regulations along with reviews of Deccolio Prosecco and Old Grand-Dad 100 Proof Bonded Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey.

The holidays are a great reason to pour some special wines with friends and family. And while we seldom need an excuse to enjoy some sparkling wine, and have frequently complained such wines are too often saved for “special occasions,” at this time of year, a bit of bubbly does seem appropriate.

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