Thursday, May 28, 2009

Do Not Drink Wine Today....!!

According to the Lunar calendar we are in a 'root' day face of the moon and drinking wine may be a No No. Really now?
( Calendar courtesy of Domaine de la Vougeraie--click to enlarge ) According to a recent article in the NewsScotsman there are days you simply should not be tasting wines.Two of the UK's major retailers, Tesco and Marks & Spencer's, who account for at least one-third of all bottles of wine sold in Britain, "now only invite critics to taste their ranges when the moon-related biodynamic calendar dictates that wine will be at their best...
Our first choice is a fruit day. We seek to avoid root and leaf days."
Today and tomorrow we are in a root day and a lunar node. Really bad! Had a lady friend over for lunch today. Made a nice salad and served a beautiful Pinot Gris from the Desert Hills winery in the South Okanagan Valley in BC. Followed this with a hot beef dip on a bun served with the Desert Hills Mirage, a big bold Bordeaux blend. Guess what? It was delightful. Then we went to a new release tasting of the wines of Tinhorn Creek, another great winery in the South Okanagan. Same thing! Tasted ten wines. Could not find a fault with any of them.What's going on here? The wines were fruity not rooty.
One wine merchant in Britain who does not subscribe to this theory is my good friend Nick, over at Bordeaux-Undiscovered. Nick writes an excellent, informative
blog and did a good review on this.Check out his take on this called Drinking by Moonlight
Could not help but wonder what Alice Feiring's opinion might be. Alice of course is the author of a gutsy little slap at Parker with her book called "The Battle for Wine and Love or How I Saved the World from Parkerization"
Since she discusses Biodynamics in her
book in several chapters and had a very interesting interview with Nicolas Joly. Nicolas is the unofficial leader of the worldwide biodynamic wine movement. So I wondered. Well Alice does have days when her wines do not quite taste right but has not attached it to any particular fruit, leaf or any other type of day.
So the question remains "Does wine change with the phases of the moon or do individual palates change with the lunar period?"
Tell you one thing though, while I was still practicing vet med, I did have some "colorful" character clients visit me claiming that their pets were not feeling well, Could never find anything until I looked at the calendar and found it to be a full moon period. Thankfully my wines taste good any old day.
What sayeth thou?

Monday, May 18, 2009

Rosé Wines by any other Name......

Is a blush wine a Rosé? Is a white and red wine blend a Rosé or just a blush wine? Is a white Zinfandel a Rosé? Not if the French have any thing to do with it. The continuing battle with the EU has a determined group of French wine makers up in arms about the pending EU Comission's decision to allow a white wine blended with a red to be called a Rosé. Now the Italians have joined the battle. The EU wine reform committee was to have voted on this proposal on April 27. Now,because the World Trade Organisation needed more time to look at the proposals this contentious issue has been delayed till June 19. In the meantime Rosé's popularity continues to increase. True rosé wines are even seeing rising sales in California, the home of US white Zinfandel. The good news is that all
this media attention is keeping rosé in the lime light. Just finished a rosé tasting for my newsletter with mostly rosés from Britsh Columbia and I love the way they are starting to lean to much drier versions. At this point in time the French have at least won the right to allow for a special label designation that their rosé wines are made with 'traditional' methods. Rosés are such great food wines and I for one am thrilled to see more and more of them available.Try them, you will love them!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Wine and Home!

Higher priced wines continue to suffer a slump in sales. This seems particularly true in restaurants. Restaurants need to be imaginative during the current economic downturn. One of my favorite local restaurants is doing just that.
They feature a different theme for every day of the week.Thursday is their Thirty for Thirty with 30 bottles of wine each selling for $30.
An annual state of the wine industry report just released by the Silicon Valley Bank forecasts that economic conditions will have a lasting impact on the fine wine business.
Is this perhaps a time where dining at home will become increasingly popular? Dine out by all means but share that expensive bottle of wine with family and friends.
When visiting friends in California last summer they did just that. Click on the pic and you will see what I mean.
You have heard this one before, but I love cooking with wine and sometimes I even put some in the food.
With the excellent help and encouragement of Katherine Andes, I have been making some changes to this blog and my email newsletter. Sign up for her very timely and topical newsletter.
As you can see I have Nat's Wine & Food Matcher. But I have just added a great source for recipes. In Recipes Looking for Wine you will find some taste tempting menus. But I always check out two of my favorite sources for recipes when I want something unique and tasty.
When you visit my British Bordeaux friend on my link list, Nick Stephens, and click on recipes you will find the Angels on Horseback recipe.
I just love that one. Nick's blog is always very informative and a pleasure to read. And I can hardly wait to try out David Crowley's latest,Tortellini with Garlic Spinach Sauce. You will find him at my link to "Cooking Chat"
So now the question remains, do you pick your recipe and then find a wine to match or do you choose your wine and and then search for that great recipe?
Have fun always and enjoy this precious gift of the fruit of the vine!