Archive for June, 2009

Alcohol Levels and Wine

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Have the alcohol levels in wine gotten too high? And, just what is too high? It’s a controversial subject, and one with many opinions about its relevance in today’s wines. Some say it doesn’t matter at all – “it’s just a number.” Others counter that it takes away from the wine itself, and hastens inebriation. How and why has this become a factor, and does it really matter, or is this a tempest in a wine glass?

Join us as we talk with Bartholomew Broadbent about the steady increase in alcohol levels in wine – its causes and its effects.

To find out more information on Broadbent Selections: www.broadbent.com

Sponsor- Champagne US: www.champagne.us

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Show #240
(43:33 min 30MB)

Oregon’s Willamette Valley

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Possibly no other grape variety is as subject to the differences of terroir, as is Pinot Noir. And, no discussion or tasting of Pinot Noir would be complete without including Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Located West and South of Portland, the Willamette Valley is 150 miles long and nearly 60 miles wide, with 200 wineries and over 12,000 acres of grapes. Bounded by the Cascade Mountains to the East, the Coast Range mountains to the West, plus a series of lower hill chains to the extreme north of the valley, the Willamette Valley is one of those regions that illustrates the diversity of terroir. So much so, that in 2002, the vineyards and wineries of the region delineated and submitted petitions to the TTB to divide much of the northern part of the Willamette Valley AVA into six more specific AVAs. During 2005-06, the petitions were approved and the following sub-AVAs were created within the Willamette Valley: Chehalem Mountains, Dundee Hills, Eola-Amity Hills, McMinnville, Ribbon Ridge, and Yamhill-Carlton District

Rusty Gaffney (Prince of Pinot) selected 12 wines for us to taste, 2 from each region or district. Join us as we explore the wines of these sub-AVA regions, to discover their differences, as well as their similarities. The wines:

CHEHALEM MOUNTAINS
2006 ArborBrook Vineyards Estate 777 Block
2006 Laura Volkman Vineyards Jacob Estate

DUNDEE HILLS
2006 Et Fille Maresh Vineyard
2006 Domaine Drouhin

EOLA AMITY HILLS
2006 Torii Mor Eola-Amity Hills Select
2006 Cristom Eola-Amity Hills Eileen Vineyard

McMINNVILLE
2006 Brittan Vineyards Basalt Block
2006 Raptor Ridge Meredith Mitchell Vineyard

RIBBON RIDGE
2006 Patricia Green Cellars Estate
2005 Beaux Freres The Beaux Freres Vineyard

YAMHILL-CARLTON DISTRICT
2006 Soter Beacon Hill
2006 Resonance Vineyard

Sponsor- Pinpoint Technologies, Mailing List Source: www.pinpoint-tech.com

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Show #239
(52:24 min 37MB)

The Wines of Virginia

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Virginians have grown grapes for wine for four centuries, beginning first with the Jamestown settlers. Unfortunately, early efforts to grow vinifera in Virginia were unsuccessful. In the late 1700’s and early 1800’s, Thomas Jefferson cultivated European grapes but his Monticello vineyards never produced wine. George Washington, at Mount Vernon, was also unable to make wine despite a decade of effort. In the late-1950s, experimental plantings of vinifera began to finally show promise and by the 1970’s a handful of wineries were established in the Commonwealth.

In 2009, Virginia has 140 wineries (and counting), ranking fifth in the US in terms of numbers of wineries. Wines from the Commonwealth are winning national and international recognition for their elegant qualities. Virginia’s terroir has helped vintners create wines stylistically between those of California and Europe that work very well with food. Virginia Viognier is one of a handful of varietals emerging as one of Virginia’s most notable wines.

Join Ted Burns and Scott Hendley as they talk Virginia wine with Virginia winemakers Michael Shaps and Jim Law, wine columnist Toby Beard and Professor of Viticulture Tony Wolf. The panel of Virginia wine experts discuss the strengths, challenges, characteristics, styles, trends and highlights of Virginia wine.

Sponsor- Pinpoint Technologies, Mailing List Source: www.pinpoint-tech.com

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Show #238
(51:16 min 36MB)

Château Suduiraut – Part II

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Welcome to our video podcast: Château Suduiraut – Part II – Video Show #70.

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The idea that wine was meant to pair harmoniously with food can sometimes create obvious misconceptions. For instance, in the case of Sauternes, one might automatically assume that because of its inherent sweetness, the wine can only be paired properly with desserts. As it turns out, inventive food and wine pairings can be genuine discoveries, as we were to learn by matching Sichuan Chinese food with Sauternes.

Join us as we visit Bordeaux’s Restaurant Au Bonheur du Palais. Beginning in the kitchen and proceeding into the dining room, we’ll see how Chef Shan creates cuisine to compliment and support several vintages of Ch. Suduiraut. Join us, along with Chef Shan, AXA’s Christian Seely, and Suduiraut’s Pierre Montégut, as we discover that while good wine and food matches are sometimes born, more often than not they are made.

For More Info on Château Suduiraut: www.suduiraut.com

The sponsor of this video is Millesima, Fine Wine Merchants: www.millesima-usa.com/

Château Suduiraut – Part I

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Welcome to our video podcast: Château Suduiraut – Part I – Video Show #69.

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If you’re a fan of Bordeaux – especially the sweet wines of Sauternes – the name Château Suduiraut will be no stranger to you. This Sauternes Premier Cru is situated at the southern end of the commune of Preignac, sitting almost literally in the shadow of it illustrious neighbor, Château d’Yquem. A part of the AXA Millésimes portfolio since 1992, Suduiraut’s 92-hectare vineyard is 90% Semillion and 10% Sauvignon Blanc, each averaging about 25 years of age.

What makes the Sauternes region so special is something called Noble Rot, which is a fungal organism known scientifically as Botrytris cinerea, and is almost single-handedly responsible for the world’s greatest sweet wines. Botrytis causes the berries to dehydrate and shrivel, which in turn concentrates the grape sugars. In the case of Sauternes, the region’s proximity to the Garonne River provides the fog and mists that allow this to take place.

Join us as we walk through the vineyards of Suduiraut, guided by Technical Director, Pierre Montégut. We’ll also watch as they bottle the 2006 vintage.

For More Info on Château Suduiraut: www.suduiraut.com

The sponsor of this video is Millesima, Fine Wine Merchants: www.millesima-usa.com/


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GrapeRadio is a wine talk show. Show topics cover issues such as the enjoyment of wine, wine news and industry trends - the hallmark of the show is interviews with world class guest (winemakers, vineyards owners, wine retail / wholesale leaders, restaurateurs and sommeliers). The scope of the show is international so expect to hear many guests from around the world.

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