May 6, 2009 |
Air is one of the most talked about but most misunderstood elements in wine. We say a wine needs to "breathe" as if it just needs a few minutes to freshen itself up, releasing its seductive perfume. In fact, most wines have been waiting years just to cast off a little gas. In the end, the result is the same: To be appreciated, a wine needs to smell its best. To do that, it needs more air, faster, than you might think -- but not for the reasons you might have heard.
August 12, 2012 |
For a one-horse town, Los Alamos, Calif. (population 1,890), has an impressive assortment of art galleries, antiques shops and tasty restaurants. The picturesque community, near the Santa Ynez Valley in Santa Barbara County, also has two fun wine-tasting rooms that offer a breezy respite from those in nearby tourist-clogged wine towns. The bed The 1880 Union Hotel (362 Bell St.;  344-2744, http://www.1880unionhotel.com ; rooms for two, from $105) was built in 1880 as a stagecoach stop — and it looks as if it hasn't changed much since.
June 3, 2010 |
Reporting from Paris — At L'Ebauchoir, an upscale bistro in Paris' 12th arrondissement, a quickly gentrifying neighborhood east of Bastille, a swarm of wine professionals — journalists, bar owners and sommeliers — is diligently tasting a range of Chenin Blancs from the Montlouis area of France's Loire Valley. At the stroke of 7 p.m., two vignerons, Bertrand Jousset and Damien Delecheneau, interrupt the tasting with an ear-splitting call to attention. They are standing at the front of the restaurant, beside an oak wine barrel attached to a small bottling machine, and are about to demonstrate a crucial step in the making of a new kind of Montlouis: a thoroughly dry, gently sparkling wine officially named Pétillant Originel but often called by its makers Pétillant Naturel, or more affectionately, Pet'Nat.
November 25, 2009
Noir Food & Wine . LOCATION 40 N. Mentor Ave., Pasadena; (323) 634-0700; (626) 795-7199; www.noirfoodandwine.com. PRICE Cheese and charcuterie, $9 to $16; soups and salads, $8 to $15; main courses, $13 to $19; snacks and sides, $4 to $11; desserts, $8. Corkage fee, $15, or one bottle free corkage per bottle purchased. DETAILS Open from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 to 11 p.m. Monday through Friday, and Saturday from 5 to 11 p.m. Wine and beer.
January 26, 2013
Green papaya salad Look for a white blend from Vienna or Austria that's sweet with a crisp minerality, such as a Gemischter Satz. Phan especially likes it with the 2011 Bernreiter Gemischter Satz, a field blend grown within the city limits of Vienna, typically drunk only at a Heuriger (a wine tavern attached to one of the city's many wineries). Gemischter Satz can have up to 20 varietals blended together. Some add acidity, some musky sweetness some crisp minerality. Grilled pork chops with sweet lemon grass marinade Look for very dry, minerally Rieslings from the Wachau or Kamptal in Austria.
October 5, 2012 |
Every few years, I pick up my copy of “A Compass Error” by Sybille Bedford (first published in 1968) and read it again for the writer's evocation of life between the two great wars in the small fishing port St.-Jean-le- Saveur (a fictional version of Sanary near Bandol) on the Côte d'Azur in Provence. Born in Germany , she had an aristocratic father, a wandering German-Jewish mother and an unconventional education. She grew up, essentially in France where she knew Aldous Huxley (and later wrote a fine biography)