'Serious Grape' on Serious Eats

Serious Grape: Stellar Sauvignon Blanc for $18 and Up

As you move up the price ladder, wines made from Sauvignon Blanc become worthy of a special occasion, and perfect for pairing with savory fall foods. f you think Sauvignon Blanc is a just a throwaway thirst-quencher, a wine to please margarita-lovers, check out what we found in our high-end explorations. These are serious wines made with care. More

Serious Grape: A Look at This Year's Growing Season

Back in April, Michael Honig reminded us that at the heart, winemakers are farmers. "We don't grow bottles," he said, "we grow grapes." So today I wanted to take a look at how those grapes have been growing around the country. The weather has been somewhat erratic, hotter than usual in New York's wine regions, and cooler in California (with a few scorching days), but winemakers are hopeful about what they're seeing. Will 2010 be a great vintage or a catastrophic one? More

Wine for $9: Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc is the fresh, tart limeade of affordable wine—a thirst-quencher for gulping on the patio on a hot summer evening. It's bright, tangy, and tasty, especially with some salty chips and guacamole or a plate of grilled fish. Whether you're stocking up for a party or just watching your budget, you can find quite a few decent bottles that sell for under ten bucks. In fact, we found more than a case full. More

Critter Wines: Do They All Suck?

"Critter wines"—which feature a cat, dog, rooster, or other cute "critter" on the label—are generally sniffed at in the wine world. Some people love critter wines, but I've been warned that good critter wines are few and far between—that cute labels often compensate for mediocre wines. Today, I'm putting that theory to the test. More

Serious Grape: Grenache Blanc

Today we wind up our Grenache series with six wines made from Grenache Blanc. This grape probably developed from a mutation in red-skinned Grenache—the same way Pinot Gris arose from Pinot Noir. Grenache Blanc is common in southern France, where it's blended into white Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Côtes du Rhône wines. More

Extreme Wine Pairings: What to Pair with Snake, Bat, and Grasshoppers

Red wine with snake meat, white wine with bat? If you were ever a fan of Survivor, the reality show where contestants survive on some pretty funky foraged foods, you might have wondered if the right wine might have made that meal a little more palatable. We asked two gutsy, irreverent wine professionals to recommend wines to pair with "extreme" food choices. We even included suggested preparations. More

Sustainable Wines: Saving the Earth, One Glass at a Time

The natural wine movement is growing, spurred by winemakers' concerns about the long-term viability of their land, the quality of their wine, and the protection of the environment. In honor of Earth Day on April 22, we chatted with Michael Honig about his efforts toward sustainability at Honig Vineyard and Winery in California, and taste-tested a few great natural wines to recommend. More

Wine for $9: Grenache

The wine made from Grenache (known as Garnacha in Spain and Cannonau in Sardinia) can be humble or haughty, rough or refined. Grenache can yield pale, delicate wines that are perfect for picnics, or deep gamey wines with a punch of peppery spice. Grenache wines can have concentrated baked-cherry and strawberry-jam flavors, and the high alcohol that results from making wine with very ripe fruit. Some have a fresh green herbal note—look for hints of mint and eucalyptus. They're good barbecue wines and they're perfect for serving with duck or lamb. More

Serious Grape: Decanting Demystified

The idea of decanting a wine—pouring the contents of a bottle into another vessel—may strike you as fussy and pretentious act, conjuring up images of white-gloved butlers and wine snobs. People have been decanting wine since at least Roman times because until recently, wine was not filtered and clarified as part of the wine-making process. More

Serious Grape: A Mixed Case of Interesting Reds and Whites for Fall

If you're longing to learn something new this fall, how about grapes? Most of us gravitate to the same few grapes when we buy wine and prefer to bank on familiar favorites rather than take a risk with something we're not sure we'll like. But these grapes will please most palates and provide you with an opportunity to expand your wine knowledge--and your wine comfort zone. More

Serious Grape: Back to Basics, The Noble Grapes

There is a price to pay for eclecticism: you can forget to drink the six grapes that provide the backbone for wine production throughout the world. These six "noble grapes"--Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Pinot Noir--have been cultivated all over the world and been made into distinguished, even legendary wines. More

More Posts