Our recently concluded contest, ‘Fact or Fiction’, gave us an idea. We decided to delve a little deeper into the world of wines and dig out some hard truths for you. Often, urban legends gain a larger-than-life status, and many a time, fiction parades as fact. So here we are,trying to debunk some myths.
1. Wine was discovered by accident – No conclusive proof
The earliest references to wine date as far back as 6000 BC (some historians argue that it existed even earlier). This wine may or may not have been made from grapes. But there is one story that pops up quite often with regards to its discovery. It involves a disgruntled member of a harem with suicidal tendencies. This woman, who is believed to have suffered severe migraines, was extremely unhappy. One day, the king discovered that his favourite fruit (grapes), stored in jars, looked rotten and seemed to be frothy. He declared them unfit for consumption, and ordered their immediate removal. This woman, in a bid to end her life with the poisonous concoction, stole a tipple. To her surprise, the concoction didn’t just taste good, it cured her of her headache and even put her in a jolly mood! The king noticed this and tried a bit himself. And thus, wine was “discovered”!
2. Wines are meant to get better with age – Fiction
Not all wines get better with age. Most wines made in warmer regions like India are young (with the exception of wines like Big Banyan Limited Shiraz that can be aged up to 10 years). These wines have a short ageing period, and are meant to be consumed within a year or two of making them. So if you’re saving some wine for a special occasion, you might be in for a surprise…and not the pleasant sorts.
3. You can tell the quality of wine by smelling the cork – Fiction
You’ve seen this in movies. And it has probably happened to you at a high-end restaurant. On opening an expensive bottle of wine, the waiter offers the cork to you. You’ve seen others sniff it, and so do you. But what exactly does this tell you? Nothing. The cork is handed to you for inspection. To see whether the bottle’s seal has been tampered with. And to check whether it is from an authentic source (check for the logo, the name of the winery, etc.).
4. Red wines with red meat. White wines with white meat- Fiction
This is perhaps an oversimplified version of the truth. When pairing wine and food, you need to understand the flavour profiles of both the food and the wine. You also need to ask yourself how you’d like to pair something – do you want a complementary flavour, or do you want a contrasting flavour? With the surge of gastronomical explorations, an evolution in our tastes, and a willingness to try out new flavour stories, wine pairing has been reinvented. So, go forth, and experiment.
5. Global warming has an impact on wines – Fact
Global warming won’t just affect the ice caps. It will affect your wine too. Even the slightest change in temperatures has an impact on the production of grapes. And that in turn will affect the quality of wine. So you might want to rethink your stance on climate change and your carbon footprint.
Summer is a state of mind. The overcast skies of Bangalore sometimes make us long for warm sunshine. To cheer our spirits, we captured that elusive sunshine in a glass – with our citrusy, zesty white wine cocktail. It’s quick and (ridiculously) easy to make (like all our other drinks). You will find all the … Continue reading A citrusy affair
The name says it all. ‘Dessert’ wine. This is a sweet wine that’s typically served as dessert. Or with a dessert.These wines are typically made from grapes like Muscat, Riesling, Pinot Gris, etc., and are left of the vines till the grapes extend beyond the standard stage of ripeness.
When you read a wine label, you encounter poetic descriptions about the aroma of wine. It may be made of grapes, but the smell includes a whole host of other elements. They conjure images of fruits, flowers, herbs, spices, wood and even the most intangible, esoteric ideas.
Put it down to our childhood, or just the scorching heat, summers leave us longing for a nice, long holiday. This week, we had the perfect opportunity to take that break. We came over to Goa for the Grape Escapade. For those of you who haven’t heard of it before, the Grape Escapade is a … Continue reading Let’s go on a Grape Escapade!
Summer’s here, and it’s official. The languid afternoons call for drinks that are cool, fruity and refreshing. Our absolute favourites for this season are Sangrias. These wine-based cocktails originated in Spain. But today, they are loved the world over. Traditionally,a Sangria was a punch made with red wine, chopped fruit, fruit juice, and other alcohol … Continue reading Strawberry Orange White Wine Sangria
It is just the beginning of summer but the temperatures are already spiking. Cool, inviting pools are a regular feature of our daydreams. Wide brimmed hats, sunscreen and sunglasses are part of our daily garb. But most importantly, we long for ice filled drinks with all kinds of fruity little bits, laced with alcohol. Hydration … Continue reading 3 wine cocktails for Indian summers
Today, we go back to the basics, and master the art of cooking with wine. We introduce you to terms you may have read in cookbooks, and even perhaps, tried practicing at home. This blog will elevate your home cooking experience, and turn your dishes into culinary masterpieces. To aid us in our efforts, we … Continue reading Cooking with wine: Your guide to cooking with red and white wine
It’s the season of merry making. The last week of December is one endless stream of parties. Wine is almost the natural choice of drink during this season. Serving it up in interesting ways can pose quite a challenge. To keep it pocket friendly, specially when you’d like to pair it with cheese, can seem … Continue reading How to make the Ultimate Wine and Cheese Board on a budget
This seems like an obvious thing, right? The pairing choice is so natural that you’d not think twice about it. Be it at home, or your favourite Italian restaurant, your choice of drink with pasta is inevitably wine. But do you know what wine works well with the pastas on the menu? If the restaurant … Continue reading Pairing your pasta and wine
There’s a nip in the air, and the first signs of winter are everywhere. We love the darker, full-bodied reds for this season, as they are so hearty. Today, we’re going to introduce you to Shiraz, a red wine with a distinct, robust personality. Regions with warmer temperatures, like Australia and India, are perfect for … Continue reading Know your wine: Shiraz