The Scoop on Tannins

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You’ve probably heard the word “tannins” many a time, and if you asked what they are, you probably got a vague explanation like “it’s the thing in wine that makes your mouth feel dry and your lips pucker.”  While this is a good description of the sensation tannins cause in your mouth, it doesn’t really…

How Sweet Wine Is Made

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Sweet wines are sweet because they contain residual sugar. Residual sugar is natural grape sugar that either remains unfermented at the end of the fermentation process or is introduced to the wine after fermentation via a sweetening agent. Dry wines typically have only 0.1–0.2% residual sugar. By comparison semisweet wines usually have 1–3% residual sugar,…

Bomb Squad Destroys Pre-WWII Wine Collection

Decanter reports that a pre-World War II wine collection was recently discovered in a British garden—but, sadly, it was blown up by the bomb squad a short time later. Here’s what happened… Tim Woodall told Decanter that he was recently digging in his garden in Suffolk, England when he found a metal cylinder. Thinking it…

Fun Facts: Thomas Jefferson and Wine

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Thomas Jefferson’s fondness for wine is well known. Here are some fun facts on his lifelong interest from Thomas Jefferson on Wine by John Hailman. •Thomas Jefferson was interested in wine from an early age. It is believed he was first introduced to fine wines by the royal governor of Virginia, Francis Fauquier, who Jefferson…

Climate’s Impact on Wine

Vineyard at sunrise, Anderson Vally, California, USA

Climate has a major impact on the quality of a wine because is the most important factor influencing the yield and quality of grapes. The best wine growing regions in the world tend to lie between the 30° and 50° latitude on both sides of the equator.  Wine producing areas are divided into two climactic types,…

“VINE TALK is…” Contest Winner

Thanks to everybody who participated in the “VINE TALK is…” Contest — both the contestants who submitted great phrases which we have all enjoyed, and to the many, many fans who voted for their favorite! All the votes have been counted, and we have a winner! Congratulations to Rich K. for his winning entry: “VINE TALK is…

Phylloxera: Tiny Pest, Huge Impact

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      In the late 19th century, an insect commonly referred to as phylloxera, spread throughout Europe destroying every vineyard in its path, and then made its way to South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, continuing its rampage. At the time it was thought to be the biggest disaster in the history of wine,…

Pairing Wine with Chips and Dip

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Wine is not only for special occasions. It can be enjoyed all the time with all kinds of food! You may be surprised by the number of easy, versatile pairings involving popular nibbles and wine. Corn Chips and Salsa: Two things come to mind. First, a dry Riesling from Germany, Australia, or even the Finger…

Wine in China Fun Facts

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Here are some fun facts on Chinese wine consumption and production… • Wine consumption in China has increased considerably. Since 2006, the market has experienced annualized growth in excess of 20%, and according to consulting firm International Wine Spirit Research, China was the seventh-largest consumer of wine by volume in 2011. China has the potential…

Athletes in Wine, Part II

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Following up on our previous post “Athletes in Wine, Part I”, here are a few more top athletes who have turned to winemaking as an outlet for their creative drive after retiring from the racetrack, golf course, and gridiron… Mario Andretti Mario Andretti, the only racecar driver in the world to win the Indy 500,…