Valentine Gifts (I)

Love bottleHere comes the month of love with Valentine’s Day, in which we celebrates Valentine. Have you thought about a gift? 

As we at Uvinum are so thoughtful and care about you, we can offer some suggestions to give to your valentine. Today’s is a customized label for a bottle of I love you

The labels come with a dual message, as many greeting cards, one in the front and one on back. In this you could read: “My love, I love you, you are the light of my life, the wind that blows my bla bla bla”, while in the back reads: “Now open the bottle and lose your clothes “.

They are romantic messages with a naughty touch, funny and sometimes slightly off-color. So do not read the message of the following label: 

Saint Valentine's day

How about you? Can you think of any message you write to your lover? What wine would you give as a present? Does it look like a nice touch to you?

 

 

Martin Berasategui’s bottle

Martin Berasategui's SystemMartin Berasategui, one of the best known Spanish chefs in the world, created a new design for bottles of Berasategui's SystemThe functionality of the bottle is that its double bottom allows the waste generated to be stored in the bottom, so it is not necessary to use a decanter with filter to remove impurities. 

This is a simple way of bringing this type of wine, more natural, to the average consumer who does not want dregs in his glass, but neither wants to take over the job of filtering the wine or assume the cost of an accessory for that purpose. 

This success is accompanied by the merchandizing of the bottle, which will be borne by a Spanish company, Estalpackaging, who will be responsible for the international distribution at the moment.

The most original accessories for wine

Wine aereator

Are you planning presents for the 2011? Boring socks and the “essential” scarf? We’ve searched for some of the most amazing gifts, from the (sometimes), amazing world of wine accessories, and we bring them here to you just in case you need to return the “detail” to a “friend”

First, we’ll go with an accessory that is elegant and practical: a fixture electric wine aerator, which lets your aged wine or large reserve wine on the best conditions in less than 1 minute: 

Bosch corkscrewIf the gift that you have received is fun for you, and comes from a “handyman” nothing better than this “Bosch screwdriver” limited edition which comes with an accessory to uncork wines:

And if the gift comes from an “artist” and you can afford it, try this piece of art: an exclusive decanter design, at about a price of 2.000 euros. Of course, looking at the size of the decanter in respect to the bottle stay away when serving wine! 

Decanter

But let us be bolder. Do you have a friend who is always getting fussy with the temperature of wine? Well, tease him … or his bottles. With this ultra-fast cooler, the bottles will be cool in about 5 minutes. As explained in this video. Just seeing how desperate the man is when he opens the fridge and sees that wine is not cold, we realize how bad we need this accessory:

But the pearl of this collection is the video that we present below. The device in question is called “The Chupistola”, so you can begin to imagine what it is. If someone really needs revenge and does not matter much if they realize of it, give them one of these and ask them to organize a party for the launch of “The Chupistola.” Suitable only for “trendies”: 

Have you got anything like these? Would you like to receive any of these? Do you suggest something else?

 

Happy 2011!

Cheers in 2011We’re in 2011!

From Uvinum we want to wish you a very Happy New Year. This 2011 will bring many new wines and lots of moments of happiness for everyone!

It is time for new purposes for 2011 and to forget all these problems we’ve had along this year that have just ended. And for a good start, we will offer you some tips for buying wine, if you have not try yet, we can help you to enjoy better the new life that awaits for you on 2011:

Aalto PS (Payments Selected) 2007: A great wine from Bodegas Aalto. One of the greatest in Spain at a price you can afford at least once in the 2011: 58 €. The best of the spanish Ribera del Duero.

Les Terrasses 2008: A quirk of Alvaro Palacios holds a much more affordable price, about 22 euros. If 2011 is not yet the year in which you can buy a bottle of L’Ermita 2007, you can comfort yourself enjoying Les Terrasses, a great wine suitable for any palate … and pocket.

The Vicalanda Reserva 2003, Bodegas Bilbaínas. One of the most modern and bold Rioja wines whose increasing its popularity in recent years. A wine to give you good vibes throughout the whole year.

Allegro Gramona Brut Reserva, Bodegas Gramona. This past year was, without any doubt, the Gramona, was one of the most awarded worldwide in 2010. It is good to preserve the best of last year, right? This cava Allegro which you can find from just under € 9 a bottle, an excellent price to enjoy a delicious sparkling wine with a touch of gives elegance given by Chardonnay grape.

Cune Reserva 2004. If you want a year without incidents, choose the classic style, this wine is your wine. And if you haven’t tried it yet, don’t you think it’s time? Because Cune (CVNE), is one of the most historical wineries in Spain. If you want this to be your year, start with a classic: Over 13 €.

Gorgocil Tempranillo Crianza 2008. If what you want is to change your life and have a different year from last, make a change and get this wine. This Gorgocil Tempranillo Crianza 2008 will surprise you because it is a really good wine, balanced and character, it is made in Jumilla Viñas by the friends of Viñas de la Casa del Rico. Different areas, different wines, but always the higher quality. Costs around € 10 per bottle.

The New Year’s Eve dinner, better with wine

This is the time for great meals, and 2 new studies conclude that the best drink to pair them is wine, not only to improve digestion, but also to avoid having to make more holes on your belt.

The first study comes from the University of Navarra, and is part of the SUN project (Monitoring of the University of Navarra), which intends to follow the habits of thousands of people to find healthy norms of behavior.

They found that drinkers of beer and spirits tend to gain weight, gaining an average of 120 grams each year, while wine drinkers showed no weight gain. “There was no apparent association between wine consumption and weight change per year, or the risk of developing obesity,” wrote the authors of the study, scheduled for publication in a forthcoming issue of the medical journal “Nutrition.”

Further, and about heavy meals, in a study of the University Hospital of Zurich, published by the British Medical Journal concluded that drinking white wine with heavy meals like red meat and cheese fondue, despite having a longer digestion, was not accompanied by the discomfort associated by acidity and heartburn.

Red meat with cheese fondue is a dish typical of the area of Zurich, where the hospital that conducted the study is placed. That is usually accompanied by black tea or white wine, and the interest grew on knowing which of the 2 drinks would be healthier with this meal, because until then everyone had an opinion, but none was substantiated.

Following this study, we concluded that the digestion carried out by those who had accompanied this dish with white wine were those who had slower digestion, more efficient and with fewer problems.

And already in the Middle Age the benefits of drinking, but in moderation, with the meals where known. As the maxima says:

Inter prandendum parumque bibendum sit SAEP: While you eat, you must drink regularly and frugally.

Will you ignore it? What wine will accompany your New Year’s Eve dinner?

Wine and female sexual desire

Women enjoy wine

One myth that ended being.

There has been a lot of talking and speculation about the consumption of wine and women’s sexual desires. Today we can strongly assure that moderate consumption of red wine markedly increases female sexual desire, although it was known that the consumption of wine and other liquors increase blood flow in humans, the properties of wine make it a more powerful aphrodisiac than any other beverage.

A recent study by the University of Florence in Italy carried out some tests with 798 women, with ages ranging between 18 and 50 (Italian Chanti region of Tuscany). These women were divided in 3 groups:

  • those who did not drink wine at all, not even a drop of wine
  • those who had at least one drink a day
  • and those who had one to two drinks per day

 

With this test’s the results were that the women of the third group, those who drank one to two glasses of wine a day, the response to sexual desires were higher than in the other two groups. Although older women tend to have lower libido, wine also helped them to increase sexual desire. These important studies were published in the prestigious Journal of Sexual Medicine (Journal of Sexual Medicine.)

To reach these surprising results, the 798 women had a quiz of 19 questions; all of them were obviously of a sexual nature and basically female sex ratio.

As said, the spirits increase blood flow but wine does it in key areas of women, that’s the reason for its “aphrodisiac” power in females. These results have surprised everybody, and although the group of women tested was small, it is clear that wine has gained a new power from those we knew.

Another detail worth mentioning is the type of wine used in this test. Red wine was used and we speculate that it must be due to being one of the most concentrated of almost all varieties. Although it is not excluded that the same or similar effect can be caused by other kinds of wine.

Wines are fashionably dressed

Dame VidaThe design is a fundamental part of the success of a product. Until recently the world of wine stood apart because it was thought that the prestige of a company was grounded in years and years of work, but it is also true that those who want to enjoy a wine may not know the history of every winery in the world.

In 2 words: label sells. It catches your eye. And if behind the label there’s a good wine, it will sell.

That is the thought that many wineries around the world who have modernize their labels fallow, new or younger products and more commercial or aggressive. We present some examples:

In first place we have the Dame Vida 2009, which appears in the image on the right. It is a new winery in Rueda presents the wine like something waiting to come alive in the glass.

 

If we go to France we have the Armand de Brigniac winery, which produces some of the best rated Champagnes in the world. And they enhance the feeling by presenting them as aces.

Armand de Brigniac

Another type of design is “Julian Madrid Reserva 2005”, That Rioja wine has a very personal image. So personal, that the grape on the label is, in fact, the fingerprint of the self Julian Madrid:

Julián Madrid Reserva

The last is the 2007 Petite Syrah Dessert Wine, from Francis Ford Coppola’s wineries, owned by film director. It’s a dessert wine, with 17.5 degrees, and where the letters fall apart.

Coppola Wines

What do you think of the labels? Do you think they can help to sell the wine better? is it just marketing? What is your favorite label?

Tasting or wine tasting?

Tasting winesTasting wine or Wine tasting? That´s the same really, although the former may and better accepted might be the first one by all those who have been attracted by a bottle of wine, them who felt the pleasure of tasting a good wine and want to make the experience repeated, without ever becoming technical or critical with the famous drink.

The term Wine tasting is usually associated with an expert taste of wine, but must not necessarily be taken that way.

 

Hugh Johnson, an expert in the world of wine, said in one of his books:

“A lot of good quality wine, even a great wine gets wasted. It flows on through throats and tongs unsynchronized with it, unreceptive to what it can offer you. Minded People or submerged in a conversation that might have just drunk a strong alcoholic beverage has stiff the sense of taste, or have swallowed a salad with vinegar that has been imposed on it, who has a cold, or simply not know where lies the difference between an ordinary wine and great wine. Nothing than a winemaker can do disclaims the need of a sensitive or interested drinker. “

Tasting is the ability to transform a common and ordinary act, in a more reflective one, with more detail on what is being done. When tasting a wine you are trying to figure out its secrets, get in a sip as much information about the product that we can. Experts call them organoleptic characteristics, between us; they refer to aroma, color and hidden flavors of wine.

When you visit a winery it is possible to be invited to the tasting room, and it may call your attention its poor decoration, the lack of items or elements capable of distracting the attention, this is so for one simple reason: all senses should be doomed to wine tasting. Even professional tasters generally winemakers, should concentrate the maximum and for them is best if these rooms have sober furniture and decoration.

According to the experts in the tasting or wine tasting there are various factors: the stimulus, sensation and perception. The first of course is the wine to taste itself, the sensation is a subjective phenomenon, dependent on the stimulation of the senses and finally we have perception that is what interprets the sensations.

Just this last factor, the perception is what requires to be learned, to achieve an independence from past experiences and be objective. It is important to have in mind that the classification of a wine as “good” depends on personal assessments, but when it comes to dry wine or astringent, it is an objective adjective referred to concepts that can be shared.

Wine in literature

El vino y la literaturaNo doubt wine is the favorite of all drinks for the world literature, its best exponents of Occident and Orient have never ignored it for better or for worse.

The Bible and Wine

The first mentions of the poetically called “tears of the vine” can be found in the most printed book and perhaps read of the history of mankind, the Bible. Perhaps the most famous of the appearances of wine in the sacred text, is the miraculous conversion of water into wine by Jesus of a wedding in Cana at Galilee. The wine makes countless appearances in the Bible, including Old and New Testament, so one could say that this drink is the most named after water.

“Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim. Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.” They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine.”(Paragraph John 2:6-11 the Bible)

Shakespeare and wine

Not all poets, dramaturges and writers have treated wine with finesse and deep devotion. The most famous is the “immortal bard” by William Shakespeare, who named the wine with not very kind words and blamed it for degrade human traits. Although his aversion to wine is not entirely proven, we can recall some of his work where he speaks about the enmity of Shakespeare and wine.

“Why do you associate with that trunk of bodily fluids, that sifting bin of beastliness, that swollen sack of disease, that huge jug of wine” … (Paragraph of Henry IV, William Shakespeare)

More wine in literature

All of us who read Cervantes, know about the love for wine of the Ingenious Hidalgo Don Quixote and his faithful Sancho Panza. We also remember the nights of gathering drowned in wine by Athos, Porthos and Aramis, the Three Musketeers of Alexander Dumas. We may never end, to quote the time that wine was remembered with love, devotion or mischievous admiration in world literature.

Nowadays, although literature is not going through a happy time due to the flood of technology and globalization, wine drinking is still king for all poets and writers, who see in this elixir of the vines as the best partner in a glass .

“ Day-colored wine, night-colored wine, wine with purple feet or wine with topaz blood,
wine, starry child of earth, wine, smooth as a golden sword, soft as lascivious velvet,… “(Pablo Neruda’s Ode to Wine ).

Development and variations of sherry

Sherry from JerezSherry is not a single wine, it embraces 4 variants at denomination of origin made from a base fluid prepared in the same way: 

  • Fine
  • Amontillado
  • Oloroso (Odorous)
  • Palo cortado 

By law, the 70% of the initial pressing is used to develop the fine wines, light sherry or ordinary sherry, the next 20% goes to the odorous wines and other wines of lesser quality. While any remaining liquid to be distilled (become a spirit, like brandy). 

In developing these wines, it‘s important to go though these procedures; after the grape harvest, the grinding, crushing, fermenting and header (addition of wine alcohol to raise their graduation), which lies in the barrel where it grows is known as “flower”: a fungus that develops a layer that provides unique properties to wine protecting it from the harmful effects of oxygen.

Anyway, there’s a difference with what happens with the traditional wine and oxygen is not always a bad company, on the contrary, sometimes the deterioration caused by its presence is wished, like in this case for example, to obtain“Jerez Amontillado”. “The alcohol content of fortified wine shall define it. In the case of the “Fino” “Amontillado” and “Olorosos” requires 15 volumes and the “Palo Cortado”, 17 volumes (the “flowe”r can not be developed in this environment). 

The ultimate expression of these wines is the “fino”, pale golden color and nutty aroma. This is a dry mild flavor drink. In this case, the flower is kept for at least 3 years of biological aging of the liquid oxidation. For many, the perfect aperitif, is consuming this wine at 8 ° C, and combines well with fish and seafood, as well as typical Spanish tapas. 

The “amontillado” Sherry’s color reminds amber and has like hazelnuts flavor. This dry drink is a double ageing, biological and oxidative. Beginning its development as a “fino” with flower, but as it loses it; oxygen starts acting on the liquid printing new characteristics. Better Serve at 14 ° C, the experts recommend drinking this wine with soups, white meat and oily fish. 

“Oloroso” is the term used to identify a darker sherry than the other ones, with notes of nuts and toast in the mouth. With higher alcohol content than the “fino” or “Amontillado”, this sherry wine is the result of a prolonged contact with the air inside the barrel. It is usually consumed with game meat for the pronounced flavor, at around 14 ° C. 

Among the “amontillado” and “oloroso” we have the “palo cortado, which is achieved when the tasters identify citrus notes during aging of fine sherry, and add more alcohol to remove the flower and give way to an oxidative phase that leads to potencial the special features found in the barrel. This wine is taken at 13 ° C, and is great to drink it alone or with nuts. 

In the area of Sanlucar de Barrameda, winters are warmer than in Puerto de Santa Maria and Jerez de la Frontera, because of the proximity of the Atlantic Ocean which moderates the cold weather. Nature does the flower to be active all year in this area to provide a special feature to “Fino”, actually known as Manzanilla.