Wine Wisdom: Extreme Wines

Vines planted on slopes along the Mosel River in Germany

 

When we dream of taking a jaunt to wine country, what usually springs to mind are idyllic scenes of graceful hills and orderly vines. But when Mother Nature has her say, the world of wine isn’t always so tidy and tranquil. Here are four examples of formidable winemaking, from harrowing harvests to plundering pests.

 

Vertiginous Vineyards

In areas of Germany’s Mosel region, Riesling vines are planted on 45-degree cliffs that loom over the river of the same name. Mechanical harvesting is impossible on such a dramatic incline, so workers have to strap on harnesses and rappel down the terraced slopes to gather grapes. But the tough landscape has its purpose: it provides the fruit with maximum exposure to the sun, essential for developing flavor and body in such a cool climate.

 

Hints of Lava

Steep vineyards are of lesser concern to vintners on... Read more >

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Wine Wisdom: A Toast to Champagne

James Beard Foundation interview with Pascal Boyé of Nicolas Feuillatte

We asked Pascal Boyé, director of Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte sales in the Americas, to tell us what to eat with Champagne and why we should be drinking more of it.

James Beard Foundation: What’s your favorite Champagne from the Nicolas Feuillatte range?

Pascal Boyé: It sounds silly, but they are like my children and I love them all. However, I have to say my favorite is the Blanc de Blancs, which is made only with Chardonnay grapes. I love how crisp, fresh, and minty it is. It’s just fantastic.

JBF: What do you like to eat with Champagne?

PB: It depends on what’s being served. I enjoy Brut Champagne with sushi, Rosé with red meat, a Blanc de Blancs with white fish, and our Palmes d’Or Rosé, a vintage Champagne, with dessert.

JBF: It

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Giveaway: The Food Lover's Guide to Wine

Food Lover's Guide to Wine

When Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg published The Flavor Bible three years ago, they gave home cooks the know-how they needed to graduate from by-the-book recipes to assured improvisation. And now with the JBF Award–winning duo’s recent release of The Food Lover’s Guide to Wine (Little, Brown), which is just as thorough and informative as its predecessor, home cooks can now match wine and food with equal aplomb. This essential guide includes a clearly organized list of flavor profiles for more than 250 grapes; a fascinating timeline of the history of wine in America; and valuable tips dispensed by the country’s best sommeliers, like Monkey Bar’s Belinda Chang and Barbara Lynch Gruppo’s Cat

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Wines for Your Thanksgiving Spread

Food Lover's Guide to Wine

If you’re on a last-minute hunt for Thanksgiving wines, consider one of these recommendations from two-time James Beard Award-winning authors Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg, co-authors of the new The Food Lover’s Guide to Wine (Little, Brown), which was recently named one of the five best wine books of the year by the Wall Street Journal. Whether you’re looking for a multi-sipper that goes with everything you’ve heaped on your plate or for a variety of bottles to pair with all of the trimmings, this list has you covered.   Bubbles: We toasted our wedding at Lydia Shire’s Boston restaurant Biba in 1990 with Iron Horse Wedding Cuvée, and this iconic brand has been our critical and sentimental favorite to enjoy on special occasions ever since. If you only serve one

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