Understanding Sulfites In Wine

[ This article was written by Benjamin Spencer, #americanWineWRITER, and was originally published in Eligible Magazine, June 15, 2015]

[ This article was written by Benjamin Spencer, #americanWineWRITER, and was originally published in Eligible Magazine, June 15, 2015]

One of the most debated topics of wine is that of Sulfites: What are they? Where do they come from? Are they dangerous? One might ask the same questions of Love: What is it? Where does it come from? Is it dangerous?

The answers are as variable as they are helpful. Love and sulfites are natural. They come from our physical world. As to the danger of either, all good things in life have the capacity to cause pain or enhance pleasure. The key to the latter is at least partially found in the understanding of how each of us interacts with the elements. Continue reading

Entice Your Palate With These Intriguing Wines

Photo courtesy of Eligible Magazine

Preview this article and download the latest issue of Eligible Magazine here

Buying wine off the shelf is a lot like going to the club to find a mate. If you’re unfamiliar with the landscape, making a smart choice can be difficult. The environment is loud and chaotic, there’s too much chatter, and more times than not you have to guess. The good thing is that buying an intriguing wine doesn’t have to be a risk.

Sure, we could bet our money on France or California or Australia, but too often the wines we find leave very little margin for discovery. They are what we exactly what we expect. The first or second glass might be enjoyable, but would you spend the rest of your days drinking a cellar of the stuff?

Why don’t we take a look outside of the crowd, toward the more mysterious and (maybe a few) dangerous corners of the world?

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Fall In Love … With Rosé

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When the weather is hot and the sun is shining all I want to do is go outside with my baby and drink a little rosé.

There is no finer pairing with sunlight than a chilled pink wine. Maybe the bright fruit flavors mimic the tension and intensity of the light, or the cool temperature of the wine resembles the chill of romantic anticipation. Whatever causes us to reach for the pink wines during the summer season it is a phenomenon that sweeps the world each year.

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Should You Trust Wine Scores?

pinot-blind

Photo Courtesy of Eligible Magazine

There’s no way around it. We all use some kind of scoring system for qualifying our pleasures. Whether it’s a new romantic prospect, a restaurant, or a wine, the idea that the essence of a whole can be summed up in stars or points has been wound into our appreciation of pleasure. Scoring things is in our nature. But it can be a good or bad thing.

Wine is one of the most objectified gastronomic indulgences to succumb to the scoring system. Wine critics, journalists, and judges happily rate the color, aromas, flavors, and overall quality of a wine after a single tasting. Not only does it give the wine a “pre-screened” value, it gives the taster a bit of clout as well. The more wine a critic tastes, and writes about, the more they are trusted.

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[This article was written by Benjamin Spencer, AmericanWineWriter, and published by Eligible Magazine. Follow this link to read the full article.]

It’s Okay To Judge A Wine By Its Label

Photo courtesy of Eligible Magazine

Photo courtesy of Eligible Magazine

Have you ever found yourself wondering why some wine labels have a brand name or a grape variety on the label, while others have the name of a wine region? Does this make it difficult to decide what wine to buy? We don’t want to be wrong, after all. We want to know that the wine is a wine of quality and we want to be rewarded when we pop the cork and pour a glass.

If you are new to wine, don’t worry about making the occasional purchasing mistake. We’ve all made them. The trick is learning what the label is trying to tell us about the wine inside the bottle.

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[This article was written by Benjamin Spencer, AmericanWineWriter, and published by Eligible Magazine. Follow this link to read the full article.]

Celebrating Women In The Wine Industry

Photo courtesy of Eligible Magazine

Photo courtesy of Eligible Magazine

Women play a major role in the development of the wine industry. Some of the world’s most popular wines and brands have been created or piloted into the public spotlight by women. What’s more, women have been proven time and again to be better tasters than their male counterparts.

Whether they are pruning the vines, making the wines, developing marketing strategies, negotiating local and international business accounts, or entertaining visitors, the women of wine play an integral part in how we enjoy one of the world’s greatest beverages.

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[This article was written by Benjamin Spencer, AmericanWineWriter, and published by Eligible Magazine. Follow this link to read the full article.]

B-double-E-double-R U N – Beer Run!

This photo – found on Pinterest and luzfosca.tumblr.com – Erich Angenendt Historische Ansicht mit Bierfässern – Historical view with beer barrels.

The world of beer is about as old and diverse as the world of wine, dating back to Neolithic times (circa 9500 BCE) when grains were first planted for farming purposes.

Today, the type of grains and flavorings that craft brewers are using to create various styles of the prepared beverage are intriguing if only a little confusing for those of us who know very little about the ins and outs of the art.

Certainly, there are a plethora of opportunities for all of us to learn more: we can subscribe to magazines, or attend a seminar, or learn the craft first-hand through a local brewing course, or by buying a kit to make a bucket o beer at home … but what about those of us who are simply curious about the dark world of craft beer?

Now with a little help from our friends at CraftBeer.com, we have a portable style guide to light the way.

My goal here is not to do a long write up about the specific gravities, or differences in foam and flavor profiles found in CraftBeer’s 84-page eBook released last month – which fits nicely on a digital bookshelf on my phone. I’d rather turn you loose and encourage you to indulge your senses in what is quickly developing into an opportunity for all of us to enjoy beer more.

Life is too short to not drink good beer … period.

[Editor’s Note: The title of this short comes from Todd Snider’s song, “Beer Run”]