Hello, Wine Lovers! My Facebook LIVE “Wines of the Week” series continues with a timely episode featuring Aphrodisiac Wines just in time for Valentine’s Day. As lovers of wine (and each other) why not incorporate both during this most romantic holiday to heighten the mood for l’amour?
Research has shown that red wines rule as far as increasing arousal so today’s selections feature various incarnations of red wine including sparkling, still and fortified. And while 1-2 glasses has found to optimally enhance desire, too much more than that can have the adverse effect, leaving your romantic encounter, um, LESS than satisfying.
TODAY’S FEATURED WINES ( to purchase any of these selections through Wine.com, simply click the name of the wine):
RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
– Don’t miss my Glamorous Valentine’s Giveaway featuring a beautiful bottle of Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé Champagne – a $100 value! Entering is SUPER easy and I’ll be drawing a winner Sunday 2/11 at 6pm EST and announcing it on my Facebook Page.
– I’ve got TWO delicious Valentine’s Day menus here on the GG (1) Steak a Poivre a Deux with Roasted Rosemary Garlic Potatoes and (2) Mustard Roasted Fish with Roasted Vegetables + Coeur à la Crème with Raspberries for Dessert!
I hope you enjoy the Aphrodisiac Wines mentioned in today’s episode of “Wines of the Week” and I’d like to wish you all a very Happy and Delicious Valentine’s Day,
The post Wines of the Week: Aphrodisiac Wines for Valentine’s Day appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.
“I only drink Champagne on two occasions, when I am in love and when I am not.” – Coco Chanel
Nothing says Valentine’s Day like Champagne – especially when it’s pink! So in honor of this most romantic holiday, I’m happy to announce a glamorous Valentine’s Day Giveaway featuring a luxurious bottle of Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé Champagne that will go to a very lucky winner (a $100 value)!
In the 1960’s, making a non-vintage rosé Champagne was virtually unthinkable but Bernard de Nonancort, the charismatic Chairman and CEO of Laurent-Perrier at the time, was just the man to make it happen. Laurent-Perrier’s Cuvée Rosé was launched in 1968 in an elegant bottle inspired by French King Henri IV.
This gorgeous sparkler is a lovely, salmon pink hue with seductive aromas of fresh red berries, minerals, and smoke. The palate is lively and layered with notes of strawberry, black currant, gingerbread, and a hint of anise followed by a delightfully lengthy finish. While perfect on its own, the Cuvée Rosé pairs beautifully with a variety of dishes including foie gras with red currants, roasted chicken with mushrooms, beef tenderloin – or whatever your heart desires!
To enter the glamorous Valentine’s Day Giveaway for the Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé Champagne, simply leave a comment at the end of this post sharing your idea of the most romantic Valentine’s Day meal. So whether it’s a multi-course tasting menu complete with wine pairings at your favorite restaurant OR indulging in your favorite comfort food lovingly prepared at home by either you or your Valentine – I want to hear about it! Entering the giveaway is as simple as that and for additional chances to win, you can (1) sign up to receive my weekly newsletter by clicking here and/or (2) leave a comment on another blog post. Each additional comment left on a blog post here on my website will count as one additional chance to win.
This Valentine’s Day Giveaway is open to anyone 21 years of age or older who lives in the continental United States and ends Sunday, February 11, 2018 at 6:00pm EST when a winner will be randomly drawn. The lucky winner will be contacted immediately to arrange shipment/delivery in time for Valentine’s Day – the cost of which is included as part of the contest!
Thanks in advance for your participation, best of luck and remember, you have to play to win so please leave your comments now. I’m looking forward to drawing a winner on Sunday and can’t wait to hear your Comments!
With your New Year’s Eve hangover in the rear view mirror, here are 5 Fabulous Wine Resolutions to guide your vinous exploration in the New Year. From becoming a better taster to planning a trip to your favorite wine region, I’ve got ya covered:
1.) Mix It Up: Because the world of wine can be confusing it’s often easier to just stick with the same wine day in and day out – but how boring is that?!? To break out of your vinous rut, why not vow here and now to sample a different wine every week or at least every month. I’ll have plenty of great recommendations here on The Glamorous Gourmet as well as my weekly Facebook LIVE Show “Wines of the Week.” I also recommend finding a local retailer who can guide you towards selections based on your preferences. To sign up for my weekly newsletter with ALL the latest wine dish, please click here.
2.) Start a Wine Collection: If you’ve been drinking wine long enough to have a favorite wine region and/or producer why not sock a few bottles away for a later date? Aged wine can be a truly enjoyable revelation but collecting wine does NOT mean you have to commission a custom built, 15,000 bottle capacity cellar, in fact, far from it! All you’ll need is a small wine fridge and a few age-worthy bottles to put in it. This piece of equipment is VERY important since varying temperatures and humidity levels as well as any mechanical vibration (i.e. refrigerator, A/C unit) are the arch-enemies of wine. Also, if your budget allows, purchase a fridge with a little room to grow, wine lovers have a habit of outgrowing them faster then they think.
3.) Learn to Taste Wine: I know we all know how to physically “taste” wines, just take a sip, right? But to really learn about wine you need to taste it in a particular way, utilizing ALL of your senses including sight, smell AND taste. This sensory information provides valuable insight into a wine’s place of origin, grape variety and “terroir” which are all critical factors to learning about and understanding wine. So if becoming a better wine taster is on your list of New Year’s Resolutions, please join me every Friday at 5pm EST for my brand new Facebook LIVE show “Wines of the Week” where you can taste four wines along with me EVERY week (click here to be taken there).
4.) Drink more sparkling wines: The focus on sparkling wine/Champagne consumption around special occasions like New Year’s Eve leaves the majority of the year unbearably bubbly-free. While Champagne’s price tag may limit it to more of a special occasion wine, there are many sparklers from around the globe that are priced for everyday consumption. Wines like Prosecco, Cava and Crémant (for some examples, please and here) are perfect for enjoying on a Tuesday night after work or when a friend stops by to visit. As an added bonus, sparkling wines also have less calories and alcohol than a glass of Chardonnay or Pinot Noir – affordable, delicious AND figure-friendly – what’s not to love about that?
5.) Wine-related Travel: Next time you’re booking a getaway why not head to your favorite wine region? Whether you’ve collected wine for years or are new to it, nothing will give you a greater appreciation for what’s in your glass than standing in the vineyard where the grapes are grown and talking to the people who make the wine. Most wineries offer tours and tastings which you can sign up for via their website and they’re usually very happy to hear from you! Here’s a link to some of my travel-related articles.
I hope these suggestions inspire you to further embrace the world of wine in the New Year! If you have any other wine-related resolutions I’d love to hear about them, please let me know in the Comment section below.
On this special Holiday edition of Wines of the Week on FB LIVE I’m sharing some of my favorite wines AND wine-related gifts perfect for the wine lover in your life. So in this episode I’ve got you covered with creative ideas for everyone from: (1) The Holiday Hostess, (2) The Red Wine Lover, (3) The Collector and (4) The Champagne Lover.
1.) THE HOLIDAY HOSTESS: Nobody wants to show up to a holiday party empty handed but what to bring? Flowers? Another lame candle? How about something sparkling that won’t break the bank? In all the years I’ve hosted holiday parties I’ve always been happy to receive bubbles which are universally appealing and super festive. I especially like these delicious bottles:
Mionetto Prosecco Brut Treviso, Veneto, Italy, NV ($14): Hailing from Veneto region of Italy, this delightful Prosecco is light, crisp and refreshing with notes of white flowers, apples and citrus. While delicious on its own, this wine is also perfect for sparkling wine based drinks such as Mimosas, Bellinis and one of my faves: Rosemary Pomegranate Royales!
Mumm Napa Brut Prestige, Napa Valley, California, NV ($20): Made in the same method as Champagne, this delightful domestic sparkler is a blend of 45% Chardonnay, 45% Pinot Noir and 10% Pinot Gris. It has lovely notes of citrus, apple, vanilla, with hints of toast, honey and gingerbread spice with ith a fine acidity and rich, lingering finish.
And since your Hostess went through lots of effort to create a magical evening (even if she won’t admit it) why not surprise her with one of these stylish and unique accessories:
“Bring on the Bubbly” Flutes ($28 – set of two)
Rose Gold Jewel Wine Glasses ($25 – set of two)
Both sets of glasses are available at Linen Closet boutique in downtown Delray Beach (303 NE 4th Street, Delray Beach, FL 33444 (561)266-0766. Ask for Christina or Carolann & tell them The Glamorous Gourmet sent ya!
2.) THE RED WINE LOVER: This is the time of year to sip and savor those big, bold red wines and what’s better than a Cabernet Sauvignon? I especially adore these two California Cabernets available at two different price points to suit your budget:
Fortress Knight’s Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Sonoma, California, 2013 ($35): This wine is an interesting blend of grape varieties including 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Syrah, 3% Petit Verdot, 3% Malbec and 3% Cabernet Franc. It’s aged in a mixture of French and American oak and has delicious notes of dark fruit, mocha & spice.
Round Pond Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford, Napa, California, 2012 ($60): This wine is from one of my FAVE producers in the Napa Valley who make exceptional wines from the acclaimed Rutherford AVA of California’s Napa Valley.
One potential problem when drinking red wine can be those pesky tannins which can make a wine taste too astringent. In order to tame those tannins you need to aerate the wine and I especially love these two accessories which should be in every red wine lover’s repertoire:
Vinturi Essential Wine Aerator ($20): This handy aerator is perfect for when you don’t feel like indulging in a whole bottle of wine.
Riedel Ultra Wine Decanter ($170): This beautiful and functional crystal decanter is perfect for decanting an entire bottle of wine. It is easy to use and clean and can also be used in conjunction with the Vinturi for extra aeration!
3.) THE WINE COLLECTOR: People collect wine to observe and enjoy how it ages over time. All types of wine can benefit from aging including sparkling, red, white and even dessert wine as long as it has the right combination of acid, tannin and/or sugar. Here are two of my favorites:
Le Serre Nuove dell’Ornellaia Bolgheri, Tuscany, Italy, 2014 ($75): From the famed Ornellaia estate’s younger vineyards, this true, imminently ageable “second wine” is a delicious blend of 50% Merlot, 34% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Cabernet Franc and 7% Petit Verdot.
Chateau Suduiraut Sauternes, Bordeaux, France, 2014 ($40/375mL bottle): This delightful blend of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc gets its magical flavor profile from a mold known as “Noble Rot” which shrivels the grapes on the vine which then produce a heavenly viscous sweet juice. Sauternes are some of the most ageable wines on the planet and would be a welcome surprise to any wine collector!
How do you know when those special bottles are ready to open? If ONLY there was a way to sample a wine so you could tell when it was JUST perfect without opening the entire bottle too early or too late. Well, friends, the Coravin is the answer to your vinous prayers. The device’s thin needle allows wine to be siphoned out of the bottle without removing the cork and spoiling the wine. While initially only found in restaurants, consumer models are now available and, for the wine collector, – money well spent!
Coravin Model One Starter Wine System ($230): If you’re a budding oenophile this model is perfect with easy to use, convenient silicone, soft touch grips.
Coravin Model Two Elite Wine System ($349): The Ferrari of the Coravin models with a graphite body and chrome clamps and trigger. You can also get it in custom colors to match your home as well as bundle it with other accessories.
4.) THE CHAMPAGNE LOVER: There’s no better time to indulge in decadence than the holidays and if you really want to dazzle the Champagne lover in your life, here are a few of my favorite bottles.
Taittinger Brut La Francaise, Reims, France, NV ($45): I love this spectacular sparkler from one of the few remaining family owned and run Champagne houses in France. This wine is predominantly Chardonnay, the signature grape of the House, which produces a light, crisp and elegant wine with aromas and flavors of citrus, apple and toasted brioche.
Laurent Perrier Cuvée Rosé Champagne, Reims, France, NV ($80): This unique bottle was inspired by King Henri IV and the fabulous wine inside is 100% Pinot Noir. The wine gains it’s gorgeous deep pink color from a 48-72 hour maceration with the grape skins which imparts added body and tannin structure to the wine. The wine has gorgeous aromas and flavors of raspberry, red currant, black cherry and spice.
Pair of Juliska Amalia Champagne Flutes ($150): These exquisite hand blown flutes of lead-free glass are made in the hills outside of Prague by Capucine and Dave Gooding.
Laguiole en Aubrac Champagne Saber ($200): Handcrafted in France, this special saber is used to perform the traditional ritual of Sabrage in which the top of a Champagne bottle is removed as the dull edge of the blade hits the neck of the bottle. This saber come in a beautiful display box and features a stainless blade complete with the “Laguiole en Aubrac” insignia and a beautiful horn handle.
Kate Spade Finer Things Champagne Bucket Bag ($358): If the Champagne lover in your life also happens to like fashion, this whimsical bag is a must! It features a cross-body strap and a silver glitter-encrusted bucket complete with faux Champagne bottle and ice cubes. The bag opens with a discrete magnetic closure and comes with a stylish dust bag as well – FABULOUS!
To view the entire Facebook Live Holiday Episode, please see FULL video below:
The post Wines of the Week: Holiday Gifts for the Wine Lover appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.
If you’ve ever stood with clammy hands looking up at the 10-foot tall “Wall of Wine” in the grocery store wondering how the heck you’re going to pick wines to pair with all the crazy flavors of the Thanksgiving meal, not to mention satisfy your crazy family members, this episode of “Wines of the Week” is for you! In it, I recommend wines that will alleviate your Wine Pairing Paralysis and pair beautifully with EVERYTHING and EVERYONE at your holiday table.
This week’s episode features 4 All-American Thanksgiving Wines from some of my favorite producers to pair with this most All-American holiday. These wines are all relatively easy to find, but if you can’t locate them, simply ask your local wine retailer to recommend a similar wine.
These wines are also crafted from grape varieties which are legendary for “playing nicely” with a wide variety of flavors. You definitely want to avoid wines with lots of oak or harsh, aggressive tannins that’ll clash with many of the flavors commonly found in a Thanksgiving meal.
4 Fabulous All-American Thanksgiving Wines
(Please watch full episode below for detailed tasting notes & MORE helpful advice):
1.) Domaine Carneros Brut Rosé Cuvée de la Pompadour, Carneros, California, NV ($42)
*SHOW NOTE: To read more about sparkling wine & Champagne production, please read my “Champagne 101” post by clicking here.
2.) King Estate Backbone Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley, Oregon, 2015 ($28)
*SHOW NOTE: This wine was aged “sur lie” a French term that means “on the lees” and to find out what the heck that means, simply click here.
3.) Résonance Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley, Oregon, 2015 ($45)
4.) Duckhorn Merlot, Napa Valley, California, 2014 ($50)
For ALL the details on this week’s All-American Thanksgiving Wines please watch the Facebook LIVE video above. To view previous episodes of “Wines of the Week” on Facebook LIVE, please click here. And if YOU have any favorite wines you’re looking forward to enjoying next week, I’d LOVE to hear about them! Please let me know in the Comments section below.
Wishing you a Happy & Delicious Thanksgiving,
The post Wines of the Week: 4 All-American Thanksgiving Wines appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.
Make Mom feel like “Queen for a Day” with a special Mother’s Day Cocktail, the Strawberry Rhubarb Fizz!
This delightful drink incorporates some of my favorite Springtime flavors as well as one of my ALL time favorite things, Champagne! While I normally don’t mix anything with Champagne (I usually opt for Prosecco or Cava to make sparkling wine-based drinks such as Mimosas or Bellinis), I find the heavenly notes of strawberry, rhubarb, thyme and citrus nicely accentuate Champagne’s sublime flavors and bubbly texture.
Strawberry and rhubarb go together like peas and carrots, eggs and bacon, wine and cheese and any other such pairing you can think of. Since it doesn’t roll off the tongue as easily, however, I don’t think it gets enough play but it is no less delicious, I promise you!
If you’re not familiar with rhubarb it is a plant with triangular-shaped, bright green leaves and rosy-pink stalks. You’ll find it in your local grocery store in early Spring, usually just the stalks are packaged since the leaves are somewhat poisonous. The tartness of the rhubarb balances the sweetness of the strawberry to create a divine, unique flavor that’s perfect for pies, tarts, crumbles…or even cocktails.
Making the Strawberry Rhubarb Fizz, is also super easy. A little day-in-advance strawberry rhubarb simple syrup prep is all the work that’s required. Thankfully, simple syrup is just that, incredibly simple to make!
Simply combine equal parts sugar and water along with a pound each of strawberries and rhubarb, a handful of fresh thyme and some lemon zest in a saucepan. Simmer for 20 minutes, allow the mixture to cool and you are ALL done! Refrigerate the mixture overnight and when ready to serve, simply pour some of the delightfully pink syrup into the bottom of a flute, top with the Champagne and garnish with a strawberry slice and thyme sprig.
You can also serve this delicious Strawberry Rhubarb Fizz paired with some of our favorite Mother’s Day brunch treats such as Blueberry French Toast or Neiman Marcus’s Popovers with Strawberry Butter.
Wishing all you fabulous Moms out there a very Happy Mother’s Day!
The post Mother’s Day Cocktail Couture: Strawberry Rhubarb Fizz! appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.
The travel plans are made, the gifts are bought and, if you’re hosting your family’s holiday dinner, your menu is probably all set. But what about…the wine? If you haven’t given your holiday wines a thought yet, never fear! Whether money is no object or you’re hosting on a budget, The Glamorous Gourmet’s got you covered with fabulous holiday wine selections at EVERY price point.
Benvolio Prosecco DOC, Friuli, Italy, NV ($15): We were dazzled by this fabulous bubbly made from 100% estate grown Glera. Since the wine’s secondary fermentation takes place in steel tanks via the Charmat method (for more deets, please click here), this delightful sparkler has an extremely reasonable price tag! This wine is vibrant, fruity and fresh with notes of citrus, apple, peach and white flowers with enough backbone to stand up to hors d’oeuvres AND the holiday meal itself!
Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut Rosé, North Coast, CA, NV ($25): This wine hails from the Davies family, California’s first family of sparkling wine! Their Mirabelle sparkler is a multi-vintage, brut sparkling wine made in the same method as Champagne, aka methode champenoise or methode traditionelle. A blend of 61% Pinot Noir and 39% Chardonnay, we love this wine for its sheer value as well as its crisp, food-friendly acidity and depth of flavor, featuring enticing notes of toasted brioche slathered with strawberry butter – yes, it’s THAT good!
Charles Heidsieck Brut Réserve, Reims, France, NV ($65): This classic Champagne is truly the wine insider’s favorite! A blend of equal parts Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier this delightful sparkler contains 40% reserve wine, a much higher proportion than most Champagne houses, which imparts a sexy voluptuousness to the wine. The result is a Champagne with a deep, golden hue and enticing aromas of freshly baked brioche, citrus and peach. On the palate, flavors of pastry, citrus, red cherries, vanilla and a hint of praline delight all the way through its long, lingering finish.
Charles Smith’s Kung Fu Girl Riesling, Columbia Valley, Washington, 2014 ($12): While this delightful Riesling from rock-band-manager-cum-winemaker Charles Smith is inspired by his love of the 2003 film, Kill Bill, it is still perfect for your holiday feast! Crafted from 100% Riesling, the grapes for this wine hail from the Evergreen vineyard in the Ancient Lakes AVA in Washington’s Columbia Valley. The wine has lovely aromas of crushed minerals, white peach, lime leaves and Linden tree that echo on the palate as well as through the long, fresh finish.
Patient Cottat Sancerre Anciennes Vignes, Loire, France, 2015 ($20): The Fournier family has been making wine in the Loire Valley’s Sancerre region for many generations. This classic incarnation of Sancerre, which is always 100% Sauvignon Blanc, is crafted from 35 year old vines planted on the region’s legendary limestone soils. It’s fermented entirely in stainless steel, with no malolactic fermentation or oak, resulting in a wine with delightful aromas and flavors of citrus, white flowers, minerals, passion fruit and a vibrant acidity and that is sure to keep your palate refreshed during any marathon holiday meal!
Cuvaison Kite Tail Chardonnay, Carneros, CA, 2014 ($45): Established in 1969, Cuvaison winery is dedicated to the production of vineyard-driven wines that showcase their cool-climate estate in California’s Napa Valley. Crafted by winemaker Steve Rogstad, this special, single-vineyard Chardonnay is both graceful and powerful exhibiting aromas of orange blossom, citrus and spice followed by an opulent mouthfeel and flavors of honeyed citrus, spiced pear, vanilla and juicy persimmon. If you enjoy a rich, full-bodied Chardonnay with some oak treatment – this is the white wine for you!
King Estate Acrobat Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley, Oregon, 2014 ($18): Founded in 1991, King Estate remains a family owned and operated winery with a focus on organic winemaking. Grown responsibly in the hills and valleys of Western Oregon, the winery focuses on versatile Pinot Gris and Pinot Noirs that pair wonderfully with a variety of foods. Pinot Noir is one of the most versatile red wines on the planet with its fruity, cherry perfume, medium body and supple tannins that make it imminently likeable. This wine exhibits aromas of bright red cherries and Oregon earth while on the palate, a food friendly acidity and balanced tannins accompany lush red fruit.
Cerulli Spinozzi Torre Migliori Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Abruzzo, Italy, 2014 ($22): The Cerulli Spinozzi family in Italy’s Abruzzi region, specializes in working with the region’s native red grape, Montepulciano. Cultivated predominantly in central and southern Italy, this grape is known for producing deeply colored, food-friendly red wines with ripe tannins. This delightful selection is 100% Montepulciano with a beautifully intense, ruby red color with violet hues. Fragrant aromas of ripe cherry, blackberry, and violet accompany flavors of juicy black fruit and spice with supple tannins and a delicious acidity.
Round Pond Estate Kith & Kin Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, CA, 2013 ($35): Established by Bob and Jan MacDonnell in the 1980’s, this family-owned and run winery consists of over 400 acres in Napa’s acclaimed Rutherford region. While the family are farmers first and sell off most of their grapes to well-known Napa wineries, in 2002 they decided to make their own wines, starting with their “Kith and Kin” line, named after the Old English expression for “Friends and Family.” The 2014 Kith & Kin Cabernet is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (82%), Petit Verdot (13%), Petite Sirah (3%) and Malbec (2%) with delicious notes of candied cherries, cassis, strawberries, toasted nuts and tobacco followed by a harmonious mingling of smooth tannins and a lingering finish.