Midsummer Wine Tricks

Its the time of the year that the sun does not set and it is light all day round. It is finally time for Midsummer celebrations. In Finland and Sweden (Norway too, I think) people have a day off tomorrow, and many head to their cottages in the woods. Me and M, we head somewhere else. Somewhere where Midsummer is not celebrated. It is not that we don’t like it, but there is nothing here for us when its on. All the shops, cafes and restaurants are closed, so we rather head somewhere where there is life. This year it will be to Krakow. Yay! Before we leave though, I would like to leave you with some tips for handling Midsummer wine-crises.  Continue reading “Midsummer Wine Tricks”

Glass Matters

I remember my first time in a Riedel glass tasting. It was around seven years ago at the Helsinki Wine-expo. I was not a wine geek then, wine curious perhaps. A friend convinced me to try out Riedels glass experience, where the same wine was served from four different glasses to make the point that Glass Matters. Yes, I tasted the difference. Or at least I think I did. How much is psychological is quite interesting. A friend, who is a neuro scientist, has written articles about tasting cheap and expensive wines. if you know the wine is expensive, you will be more likely to like it he says. It may be the same with the glass: if you know you are holding handcrafted fine crystal, you will like the taste better. The aromatic experience I truly believe is different due to different shapes of glasses, so that of course strengthens the total experience. Anyway, glassware matters to me, and that is most important. Continue reading “Glass Matters”

About the Author

Yes. That’s me smirking in the picture. After glasses a glass of wine(s). I don’t post things about myself that often. Or I do, but the comments are more embedded in posts about something else. I guess I have thought it is a bit self-centered to write just about yourself, but then again, it is nice to know your blogger. Blogs are popular partly because the writers are generous about themselves. You feel like you know them. So perhaps I should also be more generous with who I am. So I interviewed myself. Not schizophrenic at all… Continue reading “About the Author”

High Flying Wines – Does Altitude Effect your Palate?

A couple of days ago, M noticed this fun article talking about what makes wine taste better on planes. As we travel a lot, also with plane, we found the reading quite entertaining and relevant. Who knew, that altitude had such a big influence on your taste buds.  Continue reading “High Flying Wines – Does Altitude Effect your Palate?”

Discovering Serbia

For the past year, Eastern Europe has invaded space in our wine fridge. France, Spain, Portugal and the US still represent the majority. However, Slovakia, Hungary and Serbia, are gaining space. We have mainly been going for Nature and Orange wines, but there are some awesome “classics” out there that I am hoping to get my hands on. But before going on a shopping spree, I wanted to do a quick deep dive into understanding the wine making in the region. With the inspiration gained from last weekends Serbian Cabernet Sauvignon, I decided to start from there. Continue reading “Discovering Serbia”

When does Cava go Old

I have heard this question being asked many times. But seldom, have I, myself, had cava bottles lying around for such a long time without opening. Our wine storing capacity has grown tenfold during the past three years. What we thought at first was a long terms solution (a capacity of 100 bottles is more than sufficient, right) ended up growing and growing. This year, I think we have around a thousand bottles in our cellars (yes, we have several). Who on earth is going to drink all of that? Unlike champagne, cava is not for keeps. Or it is to some extent, but it lacks the acidity for long terms storage and development. I don’t know that much about the topic, but looking at our cava reserves, I felt obliged to find out. Continue reading “When does Cava go Old”

Sniffing Out Wine Faults

This week was a bit unlucky with wine. Several (two) of the bottles I have opened have gone right down the drain due to a wine fault. A wine fault is not always easy to sniff out. Many people just aren’t familiar enough with the flaws to confidently diagnose what’s wrong. But I live with someone with a super sensitive nose. He can smell a full trashcan from outside of the door, or if something has gone old in the fridge from the other side of the apartment. The same goes with wine. The smell-memory or -footprint that has been left in M’s mind is so strong, that no contaminated bottle can get away with it. It is a talent to be envied at times, but most of the time I really enjoy living in my bubble of ignorant bliss. For wine though, I would like to be more knowledgeable, so I a bit of studying can perhaps compensate for a weaker senses. Continue reading “Sniffing Out Wine Faults”

Loire on my mind

This week has been quite demanding. I will not go into details why, but to make the day a bit more cheerful, I started thinking about what kind of wines I want to drink in 2017. And what better to lighten up the mood than thoughts of “the garden of France”, Loire Valley. As mentioned in my forecast for the year, Loire wines are thought to be in high demand in 2017. Poilly-Fume and Sancerre are already well known and loved; however, I see less known appellations like Anjou, Saumur and Vouvray appearing on menus of wine bars and restaurants.  Continue reading “Loire on my mind”

Wine Trends 2017

A year back, I did a post about 2016 wine trends and predicted the following: Orange wine overtaking rosé; Urban wineries gaining attention (attention yes, volume no), and Coravin making rare wines by the glass more affordable. Was I right? I am not sure. Perhaps it is just me that has had my eyes open for these things, but I feel that all predictions have walked with me through the whole year. But past is the past and I think it is interesting to look at what is going to be big this year. So, I went wild on google and collected a few trends that I think I will at least be following in 2017.

The rise of sparkling red

This fall I wrote about my new-found curiosity for sparkling red wines. I have never been a fan of Lambrusco, and perhaps never will be, but suddenly many restaurants I visited had lovely, light sparkling reds from France (Loire) and Germany on the menu as aperitifs. This happened in restaurants in several countries (Finland and Spain), so it is not just a regional phenomena. Thus, I predict sparkling reds to be hot hot hot in 2017. There has also been some noise about Loire rising up as the trendy region of the year, so this could add up to a perfect combination.

The year of Portugal? – Focus on lesser known grape varieties

Me and M have been fans of Portugal for many years now. In 2015 M did a road trip, driving from Porto all the way down to Beira Interior and back. Regions like Dão are still relatively unknown to the masses, however, the average consumers have started drifting beyond their Merlots and Sauvignon Blancs, and are now interested in varieties such as Verdejo and Alvarinho. Portugal is especially interesting for its field blends from pre-phylloxeira vineyards. There might be something like 50 different varieties growing in those fields, and the wines that are born from them are interesting. So, perhaps it is finally the year of Portugal. Time to boost up the sales!

Movement of wine – exchange rates and barriers to trade

2016 was a significant year in global politics. I will not contribute my opinion to that discussion, at least not on the blog (especially not on the blog), but what is interesting from a wine-perspective is how will everything that has happened impact the movements of wine? I am more thinking of exchange rates and barriers to trade. I am already now distancing myself from US wines due to the strong dollar (and weak Swedish krona), and keeping to the old world, that is close and still moving freely within the EU. Brexit has not yet happened (I mean the concrete separation…the divorce has just been declared), but I wonder what will happen to the now thriving UK wine market? Will the rise of English sparkling come to a halt due to uncertainty? All in all, these things are hard to predict (I would be a millionaire if I could), but, my best guess is that people will be looking increasingly closer to home for good wines. Loire, I think, will be one of the areas I will be obsessing about in 2017.

xx Soile

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