Oscar Wines are Here

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The Fighter

Well, without a specific wine called The Fighter what are you gonna do? How about going after The Boxer? Well, at least  there is Redbank’s Fighting Flat Shiraz, the perfect wine to cheer on The Fighter: a little rough around the edges, in your face, and in the end a winner.

  

127 Hours

OK, this is a bit of a smart arse suggestion. It wasn’t funny when it first happened and it can’t be funny in this gripping re-creation. While James Franco can be hilarious, I have a feeling this is going to be recognized as quite the serious turn for him. So, what should we be drinking? Well, there’s only one choice a great Shiraz from Australia produced by D’Arenberg called “The Dead Arm” and that’s just going to generate some ill will, methinks. But it’s delicious, so I’m going with it.

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THE GRAPEFRUIT ELECTION SPECIAL

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Midweek Movie Wine

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In my opinion one of the most enjoyable things to do during the week is zone out with a film, a nice meal, my preference is pizza as you can still enjoy it when it’s cold and a nice bottle of red. While my wines tend to vary one type I keep coming back to with pizza and Bolognese for that matter is Barbera.
 
To me Barbera and tomato based dishes are a match made in heaven!  Barbera is a high acidity red grape from Piedmont, with a juicy cherry, strawberry, and often tar-like touch. A tomato is a fruit-vegetable with sweet overtones and a high acidity bite. This pairing is a classic case of matching like to like. Although it might sound somewhat stupid to pair tomato with an acidic red wine, it works amazingly well. The best Barberas to match with tomato based dishes tend to be the more traditional and less oak influenced style. So the next time you sit down to watch the magic, grab a pizza and a good bottle of Barbera, or whatever wine you fancy.

Marvelous Merlot!!

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Merlot has had a rough time over the past decade or so. Once everyone’s favorite easy-drinking red, Merlot was stigmatized by Miles’ famous line in Sideways: “We are not drinking any %^@#ing Merlot!” We flirted briefly with Pinot Noir, again probably at Miles suggestion, before we moved on to Shiraz and Cabernet but the question is where is Merlot today? It’s a good question and one the savvy consumer should be asking.

All the attention that had once been focused on Merlot, but quickly switched allegiances, left Merlot producers oversupplied for the marketplace. You know what that generally means: falling prices as production exceeds demand and increased quality as lands that may have been over-cropped or irrationally planted to Merlot get budded over to more valuable varieties or farmed for quality over quantity. Now many of those who produced some god awful Merlots have decide to plant the current trendy variety, and that means that we can once again go back to enjoying good quality juicy Merlots from France, Italy, Australia and most definitely Chile.  Maybe now is the time to give this wonderful grape a second chance!!

Pairing Wine and Chocolate

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Wine and chocolate is a mysterious pairing that seems to have hugely different results for different palates. Which, of course, is fine since the only match that is good is the one that works for you. But it does make offering pairing recommendations a bit more difficult than it ought to be!

There is one standby that works wonders with most chocolate: the sweet red wine Recioto della Valpolicella. This wonderful wine seems to have the elusive balance of fruit, sugar, acidity and tannin that makes it chocolate’s perfect partner. Similar to Recioto is Port — in particular, the fruity style of port referred to as Ruby Port, which accounts for most of the port wines that we see.

So, what is it about chocolate that makes it so hard to pair?

Well, for starters there’s all that sugar and sugar generally requires sugar to achieve a balanced food and wine pairing. In addition, sugar can highlight the acid of a particularly high-acid wine, while at the same time it can make a low-acid wine seem remarkably dull and flat. The best chocolate is also a must with good wine, your dairy milk will do for your cup of tea but treat yourself to a bitter sweet rich dark chocolate when combining with wine.

The perfect wine for Valentine’s Day

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With Valentine’s Day upon us, many people will be analysing every detail to ensure a perfect evening. From the flowers to the chocolate, menu to music, every element will be considered and reconsidered for maximum love impact.

If we’re honest with ourselves, our choice of wine is easy, as it always is. Simply serve the wine he/she likes best! That’s the ticket to a successful meal after all, isn’t it? Pair it with what you like. Well, if it’s not and you need some suggestions for a wine why not go with sparkling rosé, to set the mood!!

All that Sparkles is not Champagne

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Cava from Spain is a sparkling wine made in a fresh style. The grapes used in Cava are typically Xarello, Macabeo and Parellada (instead of the Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier usually used for Method Champenoise wines), so the flavor profile of Cava is distinct from that of Champagne; the wines are zippy and fruity. As with Chamapagne, Cava labels generally will tell you the style be they Brut or secco.
 
Italy is one of the world’s largest sources of sparkling wines and many are quite well-known, like Prosecco. Prosecco from the Veneto Region is much like Cava in that they’re better priced than champagne, though Prosecco’s flavors are generally more orchard fruit-driven, thick apples and pears and perhaps ultimately simpler than Cava. Also like Champagne all prosecco must be produced in a designated area around Valdobbiadene and must be made of 100% Glera grape (formerly known as prosecco). So why not give these two sparklers a twirl this Valentines Day!

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