Last Sunday, I wrote about our Easter trip to the capital of South Korea, Seoul. During our travels, we stumbled on a traditional Korean drink that really tickled our fancy – Makgeolli. Makgeolli is a Korean alcoholic beverage made from rice. Its a kind of rice wine, like Soju, but low in alcohol (from six to nine percent). Makgeolli is milky, creamy, and lightly sparkling with a some viscosity. The taste can be sweet or slightly bitter, and and the texture chalky with sediment that gives a cloudy look. Magkeolli is considered a happy communal drink, and due to its history as the “farmers” wine, it has been mostly unpopular since the 80’s. But recently the 2000 year old drink has been resurrected as young korean’s prefer low alcohol and healthier beverages. Continue reading “The Resurrection of Magkeolli”
Since I am only writing on Sundays now, it does not really make sense continuing Wineweek as it is. My workload has increased both at my “adult job” as well as with Tripsteri, so I don’t find it enjoyable to write several times a week any more. But on Sundays, I feel relaxed and inspired, and writing this blog contributes to my overall sanity. But this is not the topic of today’s post. This week, I had the pleasure and honor to visit Azerbaijan for the first time in my life, and I took a few pictures from the coast of the Caspian sea as souvenirs. Continue reading “From Baku with Love”
Riesling – one of the most well known grape varieties in the world, and the enormous gap in my knowledge of wine. I have been dodging Riesling for years. Probably because it is one of those varieties that produces so many different types of wine. Learning Riesling has just felt like too much work. But now I have come to my senses. During this fall, we have been taking a walk on the sweet-side, so Rieslings have no longer been on the list of “too much sugar”. But to be able to become serious about Riesling, one has to do some studying. So here are some of my findings about my new grape-obsession. Continue reading “Wineweek 170: Decoding Riesling”
Every year M tells me that this year, there will be no Christmas calendar. I have already stopped believing him; Every year there is, and there is always some new twist to it. This years calendar is great fun, read on to find out more about it. Continue reading “Wineweek 162: The Christmas Calendar”
I think I write about this same topic every year; I rave about the awesomeness of having a wine calendar for Christmas. I think it was three years ago that I got one from M, and I still remember it vividly: 24 boxes, stacked in four rows of six, waiting for me on top of the wine fridge on the first day of December. I will never forget it because it was so awesome. So if you truly love someone who truly loves wine – trust me, this is the best way to show your affection. Continue reading “Three Tips for Making a Wine-Calendar”
Although my job is to manage and solve complex problems, I appreciate simplicity in most things (in everything). Wine is not simple: it is a result of science, engineering, powers of nature, and taste. There are over 10 000 different grape variants, hundreds (maybe thousands) of different winegrowing regions with different soil and climate, and millions of nuances to making wine. So if you want to master wine, it is quite a journey to learn everything. Wine Folly, however, makes it as easy as it can get. And you will have fun while you study.
Wine Folly is a wine blog and book written by sommelier Madeline Puckette. All of her articles summarize quite large topics, contain pictures and infographics, and use storytelling as a tool, keeping the reader engaged from start to finish. Madeline also has a tongue-in-cheek style of humor in her texts, that give a friendly edge to the topic. The information shared on Wine Folly is a bit black and white (not in the context of colour but with facts), however the high level of simplification is what makes the information easy to consume. So if you want to learn about a specific type of wine or grape quickly, Wine Folly is the perfect place to gather those nuggets of information that help you know what you are drinking. I wouldn’t start arguing about the facts with a specialist though, as the high level of generalization also means that the statements in the book do not take into account exceptions. For example, the book states that there are only three grape varieties allowed in Champagne. In truth, there are seven, but four of them are very rare.
I ordered the book to M for his birthday. Its rich with colour and pictures, which I love, and information is easy to find. It contains information on science related to wine, taste profiles for wine regions and grape varieties and deep dives into accessories. Madeline has really applied her graphic design skills into the visualization in the book. You don’t have to read long, dry descriptions, but rather explore pictures of taste wheels and other informative illustrations. It was not very expensive for a wine book, and is a suitable read for anyone.
What I particularly like about this book is that there is no snobbery, just enjoyment and fun of discovering wine. It’s kind of feel-good wine book, a rare one of its kind.
The Wine Folly can be ordered from internet bookstores for about 200kr
On Sunday I hinted that I had a new obsession. I do, and it is bit surprising. I never thought I would fall for sweet wines. As many of my other obsessions, this one has started with a good sommelier, who has managed to sell me a glass that I would never otherwise try. Must have been a good sommelier, as I never even peer at that section of the wine list. Continue reading “Vins Doux Naturels – Naturally Sweet Wines”
Sugar in wine – a topic that has claimed a lot of interest in the past ten years. For many, the topic has spawned from more focus on health and weight. For a smaller majority, sugar, or rather lack of sugar is a sign of quality of wine. I must admit that for me it was initially the first, and during recent years, as I have learned more, the latter. As I have started understanding different methods of wine making, I have also understood the role of sugar and the importance of where it comes from. Here is a quick summary and my attempt to demystify the topic of sugar in wine. Continue reading “Sugar in Wine Demystified”
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”
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”