Sweet Wines for Your Pumpkin Pie

Sweet wines have a bad reputation in the United States as cheap, watered-down alternatives to the more refined, dry styles. Keep your sticky white zins to yourself, I thought when I began getting interested in wine. I’ll drink my zippy sauvignon blancs and tannic cabernets. Continue reading

Pairing Notes: A Wintry Vegetarian Dinner

Putting together a pairing for this menu, which features “rich Mediterranean-inspired flavors,” I wanted to focus on the best ways to highlight its risotto centerpiece:

The citrusy creaminess of the lemon risotto needs a comparable wine in both weight and flavor. We recommend a heftier white like a Fumé Blanc from California, a richer style of Sauvignon Blanc that’s aged in oak. For something a little more festive, try a sparkling wine from Italy’s Franciacorta region in Lombardy, where risotto is a traditional dish; the bubbles will provide a lighter complement to the dish, refreshing the palate between bites.

Txakolí: Summer’s Coolest Wine

Even though I was born and raised in Atlanta, I’ve never tolerated hot weather very well. I kept my childhood room as cold as a meat locker, and now as an adult, I seek out more grown-up ways to stay cool. Nothing snaps me out of my heat-induced stupor like a cold, zippy wine late in the haze of the day. This summer, my perfect refreshing wine has been Txakolí, the effervescent, bone-dry Basque white that makes an ideal toast to the last days of the season.

I discovered Txakolí (pronounced cha-co-lee) a few years ago during a meal at Mercat, a Barcelona-inspired Spanish restaurant in downtown New York City, where the bartender suggested I try it when I asked for something crisp and dry. To enhance its natural effervescence (it’s not quite as bubbly as Champagne, but there’s definitely fizz in there), the wine is traditionally poured with one hand holding the bottle far above your head, and the other hand holding the glass far below. A T-shaped spout helps aerate the wine even more, and brings the bubbles to life. Sitting at the bar at Mercat, I was amazed while watching my bartender pour, impressed that she let not a single drop fall to the floor. Continue reading

Friday Cocktails on SAVEUR.com

I got into sherry a few years ago at a tasting party at Stevie’s house. Recently, I revisited the experience recently at The Noble Rot, a traveling wine club which hosted its own sherry party recently. Along with the lovely tastes provided by Kerin Auth of Spanish wine shop Tinto Fino in NYC, I greatly enjoyed a sherry martini that started the night. Check out my piece on SAVEUR.com to learn more!

 Courtesy of Anna Stockwell, SAVEUR.com

Food Adventure: Cheesemaking in Upstate New York

Lots of cooking coming up this week, but in the meantime, check out my post on SAVEUR.com on cheese-making in upstate New York! 

Here’s a teaser: When I was a little girl, I used to fancy that I was Laura Ingalls in Little House in the Big Woods, churning my own butter and frying crackling — despite not really knowing what crackling was. Last month, I visited Sprout Creek Farm, a working farm, creamery, and educational center in upstate New York, and watched a version of my dream come true. Read more at SAVEUR.com»