November 30th, 2016

vineyard-1402355While the trees continue to change, now is an excellent time to visit a local vineyard and take in the crisp autumn air and the beautiful scenery. Many states have vineyards, and you might be surprised to learn just how close one is to you. Do a quick search online and discover who is nearby and what sort of tours they have to offer.

You may find yourself ready to go on a nice, long stroll through rows of vines while the trees change around you or while the vast landscape stretches out in front of you. You may have a lovely day of wine tasting, enjoying all the different vintages that the winery has to showcase, maybe picking up a bottle or two before you leave.

Does anyone you know have a birthday or anniversary coming up? Treat them to a vineyard visit as a gift. They’ll be surprised and delighted at something so different and unexpected. Visiting local wineries also helps them out so they can continue to grow and produce favorite wines and maybe even craft a few new ones.

Everyone has to stop and step out of the endless working world now and then and enjoy a bit of nature. Try a vineyard near you and take a little time to relax this fall before the holidays.

 

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November 23rd, 2016

pumpkin-pie-3-616673-mYou’ve had the savory turkey and the spicy stuffing. You’ve had the tart cranberry sauce and the buttery mashed potatoes. Now it’s time for dessert – the classic of classics, pumpkin pie. But what if you’d like to have a glass of wine with your pie? What’s a good wine to pair up with all that pumpkin and spice?

Some wine experts are fans of finding wine that helps to echo all the spices involved in pumpkin pie for a great enhanced experience. The right aged Sherry, for example, can have warm nutty and spice-tinged flavors that make for a great duo. Other wines can help to balance out the creaminess and richness of the pie. A wine that is not overly sweet won’t be in a sugar competition with the pie.

A good Chardonnay can house notes of cinnamon and baked apples, which is a nice partner to pumpkin pie. Something with a crisp acidity can also help cut through the richness of the pie and make for a nice contrast.

You can go searching for wines with these traits, but as always there is nothing stopping you from drinking whatever wine you like best, pie or not. It’s about enjoying what you like in life – after all, isn’t that what we’re thankful for?

 

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November 16th, 2016

thanksgiving-table-1443940A lot of people feel like the holidays require them to go more expensive. You’re entertaining people – that means you should have the best of the best, right? Not necessarily.

There are a lot of wines out there that don’t cost a great deal and that everyone can enjoy. You may already have a few favorites yourself, but feel hesitant to use them. Don’t be! If you have delicious wine that you enjoy, even if it isn’t very expensive, go ahead and use it for your Thanksgiving dinner or any holiday parties you might want to have. People aren’t going to argue over good wine. In fact, you may have more than one person ask where you bought it so they can go get their own bottle later. Imagine their surprise when they realize it’s not going to cost them a lot.

This season people are interested in saving. Likewise, your friends and family are generally going to be similar to you in their lifestyles, which means if they, too, can get an inexpensive bottle of great wine, they’ll be more than happy. You can always search for lists online regarding inexpensive wine, and then head out and give them a try in order to have something new this season without breaking the bank.

 

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November 9th, 2016

britain-1631408New research has recently shown that Britain’s changing climate could eventually transform the country into a “major wine producer” as soon as the turn of the century. It all has to do with the slowly increasing temperature, and just how much the various grape vines might enjoy the warmer region.

Right now, it is expected that Britain’s temperature could increase as much as 2.2° C by 2100 and rainfall is projected to increase by as much as 5.6 percent. These changes, though they may seem slight to some, can mean large differences in how everything works for the ecosystem, and thus the vineyards that would currently be growing there and those that could pop up in the future. In the end, that means more wine and making Britain a major producer.

But 2100 is still quite far down the road and we’re all still making various changes scientifically and otherwise. While this future is entirely possible, it’s also possible we’ll finally switch back and Britain will stay just as it is – but that doesn’t mean you won’t still be able to enjoy a bottle from the region!

 

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November 2nd, 2016

cheese-1460387It’s long been known that cheese and wine can complement each other, but did you know this reasoning has a scientific basis? The Journal of Food Science, October 2016 issue, states findings that eating cheese and drinking wine can influence the description of, and preference for, various wines. Researchers have developed a new sensory evaluation “test” that indicates how the perception of wine can change over a period of consuming cheese and taking three separate sips of wine. Eating cheese between taking sips of wine can alter the preference for a certain wine.

With red wines, the astringency was decreased while the aroma of red fruit was brought forth. Sweet wines in the test were not changed. With dry white wines, the cheese did have an impact on the aroma. The bottom line from this survey was that regardless of the cheeses digested, they all seemed to improve the taste of the wine. Why not try this taste test for yourself and see if you come up with similar results?

 

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October 26th, 2016

1129_tSweeping up crumbs after a dinner or on the kitchen counter shouldn’t be done with your hand. And a paper towel doesn’t exactly always do the job either. At high class restaurants, waiters will carry around a crumb scraper. Once a meal is over and the table is being cleared, he or she will use the scraper to quickly and efficiently swipe the table free of crumbs. Or they may pop in during a meal while checking on guests to remove any rogue unwanted crumbs.

Whatever the case may be, having your own crumb scraper on hand can be useful. It makes getting crumbs out of the way much easier. They come in a variety of colors, materials, and plating. From bright enamel coated to simple aluminum, you’ll find one that you enjoy best. They don’t cost much, which only adds to their appeal. You can also choose from the simple, smaller option, or pick out the wide blade design. Whatever works best for you.

No matter what, you’ll find that a good crumb scraper is well worth having on hand – and no more using your hand to scrape crumbs!

 

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October 19th, 2016

8294_tPerhaps you have a friend or two coming over to play house sitter while you’re out for a week or two. Or maybe you’re having a party and have a lovely selection of wines for people to try – and occasionally someone other than yourself will (with permission, of course) visit your wine cellar to pick out a fresh bottle. But what if you have a bottle or two of Champagne that you’re saving for a special occasion? How do you make sure that these bottles aren’t accidentally opened by folks with good intentions?

A Tantalus wine bottle lock is an excellent answer. The bottle lock goes over the entire top of the opening, from the top of the cork all the way down the neck. The spring-loaded cartridge snaps over the top and is secured by a key. Turn the key, and voila! The bottle can now be opened by no one except yourself, the key holder. The bottle lock itself is an excellent visual deterrent for anyone looking to open a bottle of wine or Champagne. They’ll see that clearly this bottle is meant for something else, and will make another selection. Without the key, there is no accidental opening of the bottle you have been saving for bigger events.

Pick up a few Tantalus wine bottle locks and feel better knowing that your Champagne is secure until you decide it’s time to drink.

 

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October 12th, 2016

halloween-decorations-1466014With Halloween approaching, a lot of people like to host parties. Since going out and trick-or-treating isn’t exactly an option anymore, it’s still a fantastic time to dress up, get together with friends, and have a good time. Then it’s just a matter of putting up decorations and getting food and drink all set up in fun, spooky ways.

Dry ice is a popular way to make a drink look magical and interesting – like a bubbling witches’ cauldron. As the dry ice melts, it creates a fantastic looking effect, like smoke pouring out over whatever container it’s in. But is it okay to put dry ice in your wine? Will it affect the flavor? Or should you steer clear?

When you decide to put dry ice in wine, it’s important to realize that it will cool down the wine simply because of its temperature. As it melts down, it may have a bit of gaseous CO2 that gets dissolved into whatever liquid it is submerged into, which can give it mild carbonation. However, it isn’t going to significantly alter the taste of the drink. People use dry ice in dozens of different drinks without worry.

So feel free to pop a few cubes of dry ice into your wine containers (make them spooky!). If not, you can always surround a few bottles with dry ice in order to get the effect you want. Just make sure to be careful when handling the ice itself!

 

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October 5th, 2016

8350-8351BBWine charms are a fun and delightful way of identifying someone’s specific drink. They’re particularly handy when hosting a party or other gathering that will have a lot of people milling around, occasionally setting down their drinks.

Seasonal wine charms can add a little more uniqueness to the mix. Instead of a few wine charms that you use over and over, you can have some for each season. And the possibilities for wine charms are just about endless. Suns, flip-flops, starfish, and seashells for summer. Flowers, clouds, and birds for spring. You can tailor your charm choice however you like. And you can also go as detailed as you want. October is perfect for both fall and Halloween. Colorful fall leaves of different shapes and colors can be used for one party, and as the holiday creeps closer, bats, skeletons, witch hats, ghosts, and other things can be used.

Changing up your wine charms will always make for a fresh new party with people happily picking out their favorite little charm for their glass. Just be sure to buy quality charms so you don’t have to worry about discoloration or breaking over time. Then you can use all your different charms during the seasons – or mix it up to use them at all sorts of different times to match the theme of your party!

 

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September 28th, 2016

8470otherWine bags are awkwardly shaped and once you’re finished with one, there isn’t really a good place to put it. This is especially true if you prefer to bring your own wine to your favorite restaurant. With just the corkage fee to worry about, why not?

The Wine Bottle Wallet is the perfect solution. Just the right shape to carry your wine in, once the bottle is gone, the entire bag folds down to the size of a wallet, making it easy to put away and focus on your dinner. Crafted with strong materials and featuring a reinforced bottom, you can feel secure knowing your wine is tucked safely away for transport. The wallet design stays shut with the use of smartly placed Velcro tabs.

Choose from different colors to suit your style. Tidy, simple, and for a fantastic price, it’s the best way to carry your wine to the restaurant, or back from the store. Keep it anywhere you need it – in the kitchen drawer, as a handy bag in your purse, or simply in your pocket.

Take a look at the Wine Bottle Wallet and pick out the best color for you. And maybe grab one for a friend as well. You never know when someone might need a truly handy little wine bag!

 

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