Can you pour wine like a pro, without spills, splashes or drips? Etty Lewensztain demonstrates a simple technique for wine pouring, whether white, red, or sparkling! (more…)
Editor’s Note: Why is stemware shaped differently? How does a glass affect the way a wine tastes? Can your wine glass improve your drinking experience? Menuism’s Wine Expert Etty Lewensztain introduces you to the various types of stemware, when each should be used, and why. (more…)
Madeline Puckette is the host of winefolly.com, a wine learning website serving up wine courses, videos and articles to inspire wine drinkers everywhere. A certified sommelier through Court of Masters, Madeline Puckette offers an alternative approach to loving wine: learn by drinking. Follow Madeline @Winefolly as she finds the most passionate people behind the wine.
Inclement weather gives way to bursts of sun during the month of March, inspiring us to look forward to the coming of summer. March also happens to be Pinot Noir Month. So, how does a single variety of grape deserve a whole month of appreciation? Perhaps it’s because pinot noir is the perfect complement to spring. (more…)
Wine is intrinsically related to the celebration of Valentine’s Day. Can you imagine a romantic V-Day dinner replete with an array of IPAs, porters, and stouts? How about some shots of añejo tequila or smoky Mezcal? Not quite what you had in mind, huh?
Libations of all types are said to release endorphins, boost our happiness levels, and loosen our inhibitions, and you know what that means. But what is it about wine specifically that speaks to the romantic voice in us and can instantly put us in the mood? (more…)
Guest Post by Etty Lewensztain
Wine packaging and label design have a much larger influence on your wine purchasing habits than you might think. When it comes to judging a book by its cover, wine-wise, no one makes it easier than the marketing-savvy wineries of the New World, who label almost every bottle they produce according to the wine’s primary grape variety. This practice, known as varietal labeling, is very common among consumer-conscious regions such as Australia, New Zealand, South America (Argentina and Chile) and the US (California, Washington, Oregon and New York). Walk the aisles of any wine store and you’ll see the phrases: Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, Mendoza Malbec and Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc scrawled across rows and rows of bottles. In labeling their wines by grape variety—as opposed to by region alone—these wineries are assuming that you, the consumer, is entirely ignorant and pretty much knows nothing about say, McLaren Vale. Shiraz, on the other hand, is something you can wrap your head around.
This is decidedly not the case with many wineries from the Old World, aka Europe. You’d be hard pressed to find a single bottle of Barolo labeled nebbiolo (the grape used to produce the wines of the Barolo appellation in Italy’s Piedmont) or a bottle of Marsannay labeled pinot noir (the grape used to produce the wines of the Marsannay appellation in France’s Burgundy). Maybe it’s that Euro-centric sense of entitlement that assumes that if you’re drinking a bottle of Priorat, damn you if you don’t know what’s in it, but the majority of European wines are labeled strictly by their appellation, not by their grape(s).
So what’s a wine lover to do when faced with a sexy bottle labeled Chinon? Check out this cheat sheet below for tips on how to decipher what’s actually in the bottle based on the label. Look out for these key European appellations and you’ll be busting out their associated grape varieties in no time. (more…)