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Apr 20

Learn from Andrea Immer Robinson

Andrea Immer Robinson is coming to Macy's this Saturday afternoon.

Who? Well, that depends on what channel you watch. Andrea Immer Robinson is host of the Fine Living Network's Simply Wine and Pairings with Andrea. She's also popped up on the Food Network's Cooking Live Primetime, Hot off the Grill, and Emeril Live. She shows up periodically on CBS This Morning and NBC Nightly News, as well as countless publications.

Now I don't get the Fine Living Network – we're basic cable kind of folks – but I like Andrea for different reasons. Namely, she's made a name for herself as a woman in wine. Here's a snippet from her rather impressive biography:

Andrea is one of only 16 women in the world
who have been appointed Master Sommelier by the prestigious Court of
Master Sommeliers. She was the first woman ever chosen Best Sommelier
in the United States by the Sommelier Society of America. Andrea also
became the first appointed Dean of Wine Studies for COPIA: The American
Center for Wine, Food and the Arts in Napa in 2008. In 2007 she was
appointed Master Sommelier for Delta Air Lines, for whom she chooses
all of the in-flight wines for its Business Elite cabin.

Amidst everything else, Andrea is the head of Macy's Culinary Council. She'll be offering
a free seminar from 1-2 pm at Macy's Kenwood location this coming
Saturday, 4/25. You have to call for reservations as seating is limited
(513.247.6411). I've already made reservations for two.

Thanks to my friends at Vinoklet Winery for letting me know!

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Posted by Michelle at 10:20 am in Wine Events | Permalink | Comments ()
Apr 20

Changes are a-comin’

Just a quick note to let you know you might be tripping over construction tools around here over the next 6 weeks or so. As we have time (outside of the "real" jobs), we're going to start re-designing this blog with the help of some of our talented graphic designer friends. We might even move to WordPress. Don't worry though – as long as you're getting here via wine-girl.net, you'll find us no matter where we are.

Our first two changes are rearranging the column layout a little (sort of like rearranging the furniture) and upgrading our happy face scale to have a little more depth and dimension.



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Posted by Michelle at 9:50 am in News | Permalink | Comments ()
Apr 15

WBW #56: Kosher Wine: Galil Mountain Barbera

So our monthly learning and tasting experience in the wine blogosphere, Wine Blogging Wednesday, occurs during Passover this year. Our host, the Corkdork, suggested that we put aside the Manischewitz bias and find ourselves some good Kosher wine.

I didn't have to go too far this time, as the kind folks at Yarden Wines had recently sent me a few samples. Last night we decided to pop open the Galil Mountain Barbera 2006, from Galilee in Israel.

Before I get to the wine review, however, let me explain a little about what makes a wine kosher. According to the Convenant winery web site, wine is considered a holy beverage in Jewish tradition.

The blessing
over the wine—or Kiddish—is an important part of many religious
ceremonies. For this reason, a kosher wine at its most basic level is
one handled only by strictly Sabbath-observant Jews. In addition,
kosher wine makers are forbidden to use any products, such as
unauthorized yeasts or other potentially non-kosher ingredients that
might fall outside the parameters of kosher convention. Kosher wine
makers can, however, use natural, indigenous yeasts, such as those
favored by many top winema
kers in the U.S. and Europe.

Now, if the wine is to be designated mevushal, it gets a bit more complicated. In Hebrew, mevushel is defined as "boiled." Back to the folks at Covenant for the details:

Mevushal wines are
nonetheless flash-pasteurized to a temperature that meets the
requirements of an overseeing rabbinical authority. The technique does
not necessarily harm the wine. In fact, a few well known non-kosher
wine makers believe it may enhance aromatics.

But that is not
why certain wines are made mevushal. For Jews, the technique simply
alters the spiritual essence of a kosher wine, making it less
susceptible to ritual proscription. That means anyone—whether kosher or
ot—can open a bottle of mevushal wine without altering its kosher

So that's a benefit, right? That means that I could pour wine for my observant Jewish relatives without removing the kosher status of the wine. If it's not mevushal, the minute I open the wine (as a non-Jew), it is no longer kosher. The same applies, interestingly, if a non-Sabbath-observant Jew opens the wine – it's not kosher any more.

Between the need for special ingredients, an extra process for creating a mevushal wine, and the need to observe Jewish holidays and the Sabbath, well, making Kosher wine seems exceedingly difficult. No wonder it's hard to find!

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Posted by Michelle at 11:45 am in Tastings, WBW, Wine Notes | Permalink | Comments (3)
Apr 14

Don’t Miss It: Who’s Coming and What You Can Get

I know, I've been a lousy blogger in the last few weeks. I haven't done the weekly events round-up and daily posts aren't really happening. Because I'm one of only four people on the organizing committee for the Krystal Pepper Memorial Scholarship – and the big benefit is this coming weekend – I've been a bit distracted. I'll be back to normal after Saturday.

So, who's coming?
Our benefit can't help but be good when folks like Monika from Such a Redkat Blonde, Bob & the Mrs from 5chw4rtz, and Amy & family from Amy in Ohio are in attendance. Twitterer Chris Bergman is serving as our resident photographer for the night, wandering around and snapping photos of everyone and everything.

What'cha got to drink?
My living room has been overtaken by the wine portion of the Silent Auction. I can't wait for the event to be over just so I can have the room back.


As you can see, we've got a lot of wine.  Here's just a sampling:

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Posted by Michelle at 12:37 pm in Charity Benefits, Local, Special Events, Wine Events | Permalink | Comments (1)
Apr 09

Pouring: Hahn SLH Pinot Noir

On Friday and Saturday this week, I'll be hosting a tasting at Liquor Direct.
On Friday, you'll find me at the Covington store and on Saturday, I'll
be at Fort Thomas. My theme, of sorts, is Spring Wines (or perhaps,
Wines That Remind Me of Spring). All week I"ll be posting the tasting
notes for some of the wines I'll have on my table. Come out to the
tasting this weekend – I'd love to see you  and the tasting is free!

So, because some of my choices weren't available, we're only going to have one red wine on the table this weekend (but a lot of great whites). If you scorn reds, that's okay. Mike will have a whole slew of them on his table at the opposite store.

Our lone red for this tasting is the Hahn Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir. I think a Pinot is perfect year round, but because it's not as heavy of a red as say a Cabernet Sauvignon or a Zinfandel, Pinot Noir is a pretty good choice for Spring as well.

Back in January, I got to meet Adam Lazarre, former winemaker for Hahn, at The Party Source. I was instantly smitten with the man and his wines, so it was a no-brainer to put one of his amazing Pinot Noirs on my table.


Here are my notes for this particular Pinot from that Party Source event:

Ah, pinot. I love
a good pinot noir. According to Lazarre, making the wine is easy – it's
growing the grapes that's hard. I think a good pinot noir can be sexy,
of all things, and Lazarre's pinots get sexier by the bottle. This one
is a blend of four different vineyards. I found the nose to be smoky,
with a lot of recessed fruit that was begging to be let out. The taste
had a lot of black cherry in it, sort of velvety. I bet this wine would
open up even more, given the chance. In my head there was a black
cherry in a short skirt, strutting into a smoky bar.

So it's a sexy Pinot, and I bet you'll enjoy it. I hope to see you this weekend!

Don't forget to buy tickets for the 2nd Annual
Krystal Pepper Memorial Scholarship Dinner & Silent Auction. It's
April 18, 6-10 pm. Buy Tickets Now

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