Food

Seasonal Spotlight - Comprehensive Guide To Champagne & Other Sparklers

Champagne Popping

3 Types of Sparkling Wines

Different sparkling winemaking techniques emerged thanks to technology and popularity at their respective times in history. Each offers up a unique style of tasting adventure. Traditional Method, so named because it became the norm; Pétillant Naturel, often shortened to “Pét-Nat”; And Tank Method, sometimes called “Charmat Method” which originated in France and Italy.

 

The Traditional Method – the Rise of Champagne

Holiday Spotlight - Thanksgiving Food & Wine

Turkey Day

As we approach turkey day a week from today, I am sharing my thoughts about wine and food for arguably the biggest feast of the year. Hopefully at this point you have a plan of what you’re doing and preparing, but have you thought about what wine you will be serving and with what foods. Most of us are headed to our family’s house with instructions on what to bring (or not) or hosting the festivities. Maybe you’re in charge of the wine allotment. I’m sure there are mixed emotions of excitement to gather, but also a sense of feeling overwhelmed.

Wine Spotlight - Late Harvest Wines & Why They Are Incredible

Late Harvest Sauternais

Late harvest wines are made from grapes that are left on the vine even after they’ve reached their peak ripeness. When grapes are (quite literally) left hanging, they become sweeter over time as each individual grape dehydrates and the sugar content becomes more concentrated.

Grape Spotlight - 2021 Harvest, Viticulture & Winemaking

Lamoreaux Vineyards rows

As the annual grape harvest begins to wind down here in the Finger Lakes (except for those grapes still hanging for late-harvest or ice wines/dessert wines) and many other Northern Hemisphere wine regions, it is a great time to talk about the different aspects of viticulture and winemaking. Oh! the magic of transforming grape juice to wine! I certainly don’t tout myself as being an expert in these areas and not a winemaker or viticulturist, but I’ve been around for different harvests at different wineries and each vintage is unique and different and has its own set of challenges.

Misnomers & Rules about Wine & Food

Don’t try to pair just flavors of food with wine all the time. Nice rhyme there. The best pairings can come from many other factors. Think about the acidity, spice, texture, weight, and dryness/sweetness (sugar)/fruitiness. Remember sugar in wine can help cut through and balance spice and acidity in food. Try a semi-dry/off-dry Rieslings, semi-dry Gewurztraminers, and Moscato with Thai food or other spicy Asian cuisine or high acid bubbly with, believe it or not, pizza. And traditional Champers and rose bubbly has enough structure and tannin (from grape skins) to stand up to fatty steak.

Aging of Wine - How To Tell If A Wine Is Age-Worthy???

 
What allows a wine to last?
 
In order to stand the test of time and age well, wine must have a good structure and the right amount of sugar, acid, or tannin.  These are the three preservatives in wine. Without a significant amount of any of them, most wines are better off being drunk at the next opportunity. 
 

Are wine descriptions, terms, or tasting notes helpful?

How do you buy wine when you don’t know what it tastes like? A lot of folks rely on reading wine descriptions to get an idea of what a wine will taste like. What do they actually mean? If you are relatively new to wine, it is quite helpful to know what to expect from a bottle, which is why some retailers highlight this in the name, although mainly at the cheaper end of the price spectrum.

By Request - Food and Wine (Does this wine need food ?!?!?!)

Food & Wine Pairings

As a follow up to my recent food and wine post as well as a request from long-time follower and friend Jim. Here is a short food and wine pairing primer. Jim asked me to expand on what it means when a wine reviewer states “this wine needs food” in her/his review. What was it about that wine that made them say that? The example he used was the magical pairing and flavor enhancement he experienced on New Year’s Eve when he paired a local Meritage (red blend) from Thirsty Owl with steak. When this happens, it is a “wow” moment.

FLX Winery Spotlight - Heron Hill

FLX Winery Heron Hill

My second stop on my personal winery tour was at the beautiful Heron Hill meeting with my friend Jacqueline and Bekka. It was a very cold and snowy early evening and i was the only person in the tasting room. Both these ladies took great care of me and gave me VIP treatment as we tasted through a wide variety of wines. My visit was cut short due to the weather conditions and the fact that they needed to close. It was a lot of fun.

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