California, Chardonnay, 2012
Once again, we're sampling a wine from the Cliffside gift basket. This time we've got our mitts on a Chardonnay, so we've chilled it to a cool 50 degrees fahrenheit, and are about ready to enjoy. Although it's never been my style to play by the rules of service temperature when it comes to wine, I decided to give it a go this one time to see what happens. Oftentimes I find wine enthusiasts to be a bit on the windy side, as much of the pomp and circumstance surrounding wine culture comes with a large
It isn’t very often that I get a chance to be out on the town for an evening to have a beer with a friend, but a few weeks ago I happened to find myself at the British Beer Company in Manchester enjoying the company of a friend. I don’t go out on Wednesday nights anymore, that’s for sure, so this called for something special to commemorate the occasion. Looking over the selection I picked a Sam Adams Rebel IPA, since it has been all the rage out there, Avid Reader, and I thought it was pretty good for a California style IPA made in Boston -- but we’re here to talk about the second brew that I had, and why I should try this stuff at home instead of out and about.
My eyes fell upon the phrase "double IPA" with a 9.1%, and I thought to
Should you strain it? No. I mean, if it bothers you, drink as you please but it will not adversely effect the flavor of your wine. A lot of producers send their wine through rather strenuous straining procedures to make the wine as palatable as possible, making sure it fits the color, complexion and flavor of the style.
Italy, Barbera d'Asti, 2011
Italian vineyards have a longstanding tradition of being held in high regard for their incredible varietals brought about by rich soil and careful harvesting. Home to some of the oldest wine producing regions in the world, Italy boasts an incredible number of 20 distinct regions, including Toscana, Piemonte, and Calabria, just to name a few. The vast differences in grapes from region to region highlight what is perhaps my favorite part of enjoying wine — not only do they usually pair well with a box of chocolates, but wine varietals are not too dissimilar from the box itself.
The posh, purple label, busy with various amounts of Italian script, gives very little in the way of description:
The Italian phrase, "Denominazione di origine controllata e garantita." translates to "Denomination of controlled and guaranteed origin," while the Italian prahse, "Imbottigliato all'origine da Braida." translates to "Bottled at the source, Braida."
Montebruna displays rich
I had fun the other week reviewing a vermouth, so today I am looking at one of my favorite fortified drinks, Dubonnet Rouge. Dubonnet is drunk like vermouth, an aromatized fortified wine, but contains quinine and herbs, making it quinquina. Similarly to vermouth, fermentation is cut off early by the addition of brandy, its fortifying spirit. Much like the gin and tonic, Dubonnet was reportedly given to soldiers entering Africa to fight off malaria due to its addition of quinine, a known fighter of the disease. I'm still not sure how effective of a method that is for soldiers, but it was a different time.
Rouge is much sweeter than ordinary red vermouth, with quickly fading herbal notes and a nice, not bitter, citrus finish. It's contagiously good, I'm not a terribly huge fan of fortified wines by themselves, but I absolutely would run through a bottle of this fast.