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10 Frequently Asked Wine Questions Answered

Wine Questions | www.drinks.ng

There is pleasure in enjoying a good glass of wine, but we can’t argue that there are some frequently asked wine questions (FAQs) that still bug wine lovers.

Should I refrigerate my wine? What other alcohol can I mix with wine? How many servings are there in a bottle of wine? The questions go on and on.

Whether it is a red wine, white wines, sparkling, rose or moscato, there puzzling factors about wines which leads many wine lovers to ask series of questions.

Well, here are answers to 10 of the frequently asked questions about wine:

  1. Should I chill my wine?

    The question should be why not? Chilling your wine makes the flavours of the wine to be sharp and fresh, and the wine’s textures will find full expression.

    Reds should be chilled between 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit, while white wines are best anywhere from about 40 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

    You are free to refrigerate, pop the bottle in an ice bucket or use a wine chiller. We advise against putting ice into the glass of wine as this will only water down the wine. Also, avoid putting in the freezer, as quick temperature change is no friend of wines.

    At the end of the day, how chill your wine is up to your own personal choice – just make sure to enjoy it.

  2. Should I decant my wine?

    Again, decanting is a matter of choice. But it is best to taste the wine before decanting.

    Reason why? If you taste a wine and it’s so tight then you can decant; if you decant first and then find that the wine lost some fruit to the air, there’s no going back.

    As a rule of thumb, it is always more advisable to decant older wine than a fresh one.

  3. How long does wine last after being opened?

    If placed on the counter, most wines will last a day when opened. Storing in the refrigerator allows most wines to last up to a week.

    Generally, it is better not to store wine for more than a week once its opened, it is only spirit drinks that can last a long time.

  4. Why do some wines give headaches?

    It is not the sulfites in the wine in case you have been told that before. ‘Wine headaches’ are really a personal issue – something best discussed with a physician.

    While some people could get a headache from red wines, others get it from just a sip of white wine. It all depends on how the drink works with your body metabolism.

    However, there is every possibility that the sugar in the wines contribute to the headaches as too much sugar removes the water in our brains, leading to a headache.

  5. If the cork breaks, does that mean my wine is bad?

    No. At least not in all cases. If a wine cork breaks while you are trying to open it, then either of three things have happened:

        1. The wine was not properly stored, leaving the cork dry and fragile. This is why it pays to store your wine in humid conditions, while lying on its side so that the wine stays in contact with the cork to keep it nice and moist.
        2. The wine might be prematurely oxidized. If this is the case, it means the cork shriveled up enough to let some air inside the bottle. It is best not to drink such a wine as most of the flavours must have escaped and it will taste blank on the palate.
        3. You didn’t screw the corkscrew in far enough (or centered well enough), leading to breakage because of the pressure applied. If this happens, push the cork in and decant your wine before drinking.
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  7. Can I buy a good bottle of wine under N5k?

    Why not? There are several good wines out there that go at an affordable price. If you are in doubt, click here to see the best wines you can get for N5k and under.

  8. Why are rose wines pink?

    Generally, wines get their colours from the grapes used to make them. Red grapes are used to make rose wines, but it is surprising why they turn pink at the end instead of red.

    There are three ways in which rose wines get their colour:

        1. Red wine grapes are allowed to macerate in the juice for short a period of time before the entire batch of juice is finished into a rosé wine.
        2. The juice is bled off when making red wines, and the bled-off juice is put into a new vat to make red wines.
        3. A little bit of red wine is added to a white wine vat to make a rose wine.
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  10. How many servings are there in a bottle of wine

    Most bottles of wine are between 70-75cl. The standard fill for a glass of wine is about 6 ounces, which means a 75cl bottle of wine  will serve four standard glasses of wine. Keep that in mind when getting set for that big family dinner.

  11. What wines should I serve at a party?

    Except your intended guests have a particular wine brand that they stick to, then its best to serve them a wine that ain’t too strong so they don’t have to stagger home.

    At best, any wine with an ABV around 13.5% is good enough for your party. You don’t want your guests getting too drunk, do you?

  12. I love so-and-so wine, should I get it?

    The question is, can you afford it? If you can, why hesitate. A bottle of wine is only as good as the drinker thinks. A recent study has confirmed that we taste wines with our brains and not our tongues.

    So go ahead, if you love that bottle of merlot, or you are curious about that rose, or something about that cabernet sauvignon excites you, don’t dull; just pay for it and take your ‘baby’ home.

Extra

Can I mix wines with other alcohols?

Of course you can mix your wine with any other alcohol – it is why cocktails were invented. There are several amazing cocktails that are wine-based. Not only do these cocktails give off a good feeling to the palate, they infuse a whole new adventure to wine drinking.

So go ahead and do the mixing, but make sure to read up on cocktails you can make with wine so as to know the right amount to pour into the glass.

 

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What Do You Know About Non-Alcoholic Wines?

The goodness of wine is well known throughout the world and Nigeria. The unique way it moves in the mouth and glides down the throat.

The heady taste, aroma, enchanting colours and hues are simply captivating. As an added bonus, it is really good for the health because it helps reduce bad cholesterol and raise good cholesterol levels.

It reduces the risk of blood clotting almost as effectively as aspirin, regulates blood sugar levels, improves brain power, keeping your memory sharp, guards cells against free radicals, fights infections, cuts cancer risk and helps with weight loss.

No one should be left out of the unending benefits of drinking wine. This is why there is now a non-alcoholic version of your favourite past time.

Click here to order a bottle of non-alcoholic wine.

If you love wine but are unable to drink because of the alcohol content, you can do a dance now, because there is now non-alcoholic wine.

Non-alcoholic wine has all the goodness of alcoholic wine but without the alcohol. If you are light-headed and cannot handle more than a glass of alcoholic wine, you will be able to handle a whole bottle of non-alcoholic wine. The alcohol content is one percent or even less.

Non-alcoholic wines are different from fruit juice. In fact, they are regular wines that have gone through an extra stage where practically all the alcohol is filtered out, but with all the goodness intact.

Non-alcoholic wines retain all the flavour and characteristics of the original wine. One of the best non-alcoholic wine range to try is Ariel. They were introduced in 1986 and won the Gold Medal over all the other regular wines at the Los Angeles County Fair.

In the 1990s, endorsements from world-famous chef Dr Graham Kerr led to a wider acceptance of non-alcoholic wines as a healthier alternative. They now distribute over 65,000 cases per year worldwide. The company started out with just one wine – Ariel Blanc, and it is still one of their best-sellers.

Some of the wines in the Ariel range include:

Ariel Blanc

A crisp white Chardonnay-style wine with aromas of jasmine, floral and lilac. It has flavours of lychee, peach and lavender, with a nice acidity and just a hint of sweetness. You will love it with seafood and chicken.

Ariel Chardonnay

A wonderful blend of tropical fruitiness, with the character of oak barrel ageing. This wine has tastes of buttery baked apples, with butterscotch overtones, and a heady French toasted oak bouquet.

Ariel Merlot 

This is a robust wine with assertive flavours of raspberry, cassis and wild cherries, with pronounced aromas of white chocolate, cloves and oak. You should try it with roast beef, grilled steaks or even roast pork.

Tidbit

Non-Alcoholic wine is not the same as Alcohol-Free wine. To be termed non-alcoholic, a wine can contain up to 1% alcohol, but no more than that. Non-alcoholic wines are healthier than the alcoholic wines and they contain only about half of the calories.

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Do You Know the Residual Sugar Level in your Wine?

What Wines Have the Least Sugar? | www.drinks.ng

The sugar level in wine is determined during fermentation when the grape’s innate sugar is converted to alcohol.

If fermentation is stopped well before all of the sugar is converted to alcohol, the wine will contain more residual sugar and taste sweeter.

Generally, sweet dessert wines, late harvest wines, fortified wines, and many regional Rieslings with lower alcohol levels of under 11% ABV contain elevated sugar levels.

For wine lovers who happen to be dieters, particular attention is given to the amount of sugar intake. The empty calories in sugar wreak havoc on insulin levels, aggravate health issues in some of us and can lead to insomnia while also making us gain weight.

So, it’s only natural to know the level of residual sugar contained in a bottle of wine.

Levels of Residual Sugar in Wine

  • Dry Reds and Dry Whites: These wines tend to be lower in residual sugar levels weighing in at 0.1-0.3% sugar per litre. In other words, with 1 to 3 grams of sugar per litre of wine, red and dry white wines often have considerably low sugar levels.
  • Champagne: If you’re looking to lower sugar intake on sparkling wines, go for extra dry, brut, or extra brut sparkling wine and Champagne as the residual sugar levels will be in the 0.6 – 2.0% sugar per litre range (or 6 to 20 grams of sugar per litre of wine), with extra brut being the driest wine and lowest in sugar content.
  • Off-Dry Wines: Most of these have a residual sugar range of up to 1-3% (or 10 to 30 grams of sugar per litre), so they tend to be a little sweeter on the palate.
  • Fortified Wines: The sweeter fortified wines such as Port, Sherry, and Marsala can weigh in as high as 15% residual sugar (or 150 grams of sugar per litre) but often runs a little lower in the 5% range.
  • Late Harvest Wines: While popular for being a sweet treat, and often served as dessert, late harvest wines can run as high as 20+% residual sugar with a whopping 200 grams, or more, of sugar per litre.
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All you need to know about Sauvignon Blanc wines

Sauvignon Blanc | www.drinks.ng

Sauvignon Blanc is one of the most popular white wines in the world, with strong ties to Bordeaux and the Loire Valley in France.

The name ‘Sauvignon Blanc’ means ‘Wild White”, and it is quite different from other white wines like Chardonnay due to its  green and herbaceous flavour.

The Sauvignon Blanc wine grapes is one of the most widely cultivated in the world, thus giving the wine itself a wide range of styles and flavors from grassy to tropical as well as floral, unique to particular brands.

How is the taste?

Like all white wines, Sauvignon Blanc comes with a fruity taste, the primary ones being lime, green apple, passion fruit and white peach. Also, the ripeness of the grapes as well as the time when the wine is produced ensures for how the wine will taste – either zesty lime to flowery peach.

However, the wine stands out from other wines due to its other herbaceous flavours like jalapeño, gooseberry, bell pepper and grass – which all come from aromatic compounds called pyrazines and are the secret to Sauvignon Blanc’s taste.

Sauvignon Blanc is a dry wine.

A sip of Sauvignon Blanc leaves a bit of dryness that comes along with its unique taste. Aside from winemakers in a few producers in regions like New Zealand and California who add a little sugar for a richer texture, most Sauvignon Blanc wines are dry.

Sauvignon Blanc Regions

There are two classes of wine regions that the Sauvignon Blanc belong to. There is the Old World Regions and the New World Regions.

France, with 71,000 acres of Sauvignon Blanc grapes leads the Old world category with vineyards found mostly in Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. Also known as Pouilly-Fumé, Sancerre, Graves, Entre-Deux-Mers, and Touraine.

Italy has over 45,000 est. acres of the grapes found primarily in Northeastern Italy, while Spain follows with about 6,200 acres grown in Central Spain.

Other Regions in the Old world are Romania and Moldova.

The New World Regions include New Zealand with 41,500 acres in the regions of Marlborough, Martinborough, Gisbourne, Hawkes Bay, and Waipara Valley.

The USA has 40,000 acres found mostly in Sonoma and Napa California, Chile has 31,000 acres, South Africa has 23,500 acres and Australia has 17,500 acres grown predominantly in South Australia and Victoria.

What else about Sauvignon Blanc?

The wine has medium acidity which demands it to be served in a temperature of 46 ºF (8 ºC) unoaked, and 52 ºF (11 ºC) oaked.

It is the parent grape to America’s Cabernet Sauvignon and other varieties similar to it include: Verdejo, Albariño, Colombard, Grüner Veltliner, Verdicchio, Vermentino, Tocai Friulano, Savignan (rare), Traminer, Sauvignon Vert (rare)

In the US, the wine is known as the Fumé Blanc,  Austrians call it Muskat-Silvaner, the Germans know it as Feigentraube while in Italy, it goes by just Sauvignon.

Sauvignon Blanc blends well with Semillon and Muscadelle in White Bordeaux, and can be served with white meat, fish, herbs, cheese and vegetables.

 

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5 Rosé Wine Questions Answered

Rose Wines | www.drinks.ng

The craze surrounding rosé wines is almost assuming a cult-like following with many millennials opting for the pink-hued wine at weddings, parties and other social functions.

Rosé wines offer a light refreshing feeling which matches any occasion and suits the sweet palate of the 21st-century wine drinker.

However, while you enjoy the amazing flavours of the rose wine, there are a few things you should know to stand you out among your peers.

1. Where does Rosé get its colour?

Rosé wines do not only get their colour from the mixing of red and white wines. While some producers adopt the method of adding a little red wine to white wine to make rose, others have stuck to the traditional method. That latter involves the immersion of the skin of red grapes in the wine for a short period of time (typically anywhere from 2 to 20 hours). The sooner the grape skins are removed, the lighter the rosé will be; the longer they are allowed to sit in the wine, the deeper pink the rosé.

2. Can I age my Rose?

Wine aging is believed to make the wine taste better. However, for Rose wines, it is best to drink it within 3 years of purchase. Rose does not have the same amount of tannins contained in red wines to enable it to age properly. Even some red wines are no longer capable of aging for long due to the need for commercial production.

3. Can I use Rose Wine for Cocktail?

Rose wines can be used to create a mean cocktail, it all depends on the skills of you mixologist or bartender. Rose can be used in making any style of cocktails, especially when considering most roses are rich in honeydew melon, citrus and rhubarb.

4. What food can I pair it with?

Rose is not selective when it comes to food pairing. From spicy Indian meals, to salads, pizzas and rich burgers, rose is a perfect pair. For those in love with tradtional African dishes, your rose wine pairs beautifully with melon (egusi) soup.

5. What is the best temperature?

Agreed that rosé is awesome when served chilled but there is no wrong in drinking it warm – the flavours are still released, just differently. Because of the casual nature of rosé, you can add ice to it before drinking.

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Don’t Know About Port Wines? Find Out

Port Wine | www.drinks.ng

Port wines are about one of the sweetest types of wine in the market, and they are unique for a reason. It is a fortified wine that puts the crown on an evening of delicious dinner, inspiring chatter and hearty laughter.

While we all enjoy a glass off port for its distinctive characteristics, some of us may lack certain knowledge about what makes it different from other wines.

Here is everything you should know about Port Wines:

What is Port Wine?

Port is a sweet, rich red wine made in the Iberian Peninsula of Portugal. Although port wines are mostly red, there are a few white port wines. Due to its extra sweet flavour, it is sometimes referred to as a ‘dessert’ wine.

The taste of Port wines differs according to the style with which it was made. However, all Port wines come with a few common flavours. Some of these flavours include berry fruits, chocolate, dried fruits, prune, cinnamon and nuts.

How Port Wine is Made

Port wines are made predominantly from red grapes grown in the Douro Valley in northern Portugal. Traditionally, Port is fermented in lagars with people stomping on the grapes with their feet while the wine ferments. With technological advancement, most Port wineries now make use of automatic lagars with mechanical “feet” in place of manual labour.

During fermentation, brandy is added to the wine.The high alcohol content of the brandy prevents the sugars in the wine from turning into alcohol as it ferments. As a result, the wine contains more sugar than other wine, which explains its sweet taste. The addition of brandy to the wine is why it is called ‘fortified wine.’

The Character Of Port

Port wines are usually very sweet owing to the high level of sugar contained in the final product. Also, port wines have a high alcohol volume, with most ports having an alcohol percentage of between 19 and 22 percent.

On the palate, port wines are unique and rich with a heavy mouthfeel. It balances the sweetness and high alcohol in the finish. Fine aged Vintage Port or 30+ year Tawny Port have an even wider array of subtle flavours including graphite, green peppercorn, hazelnut, almond, butterscotch and graham cracker.

Types of Port Wines

  • White Port – is usually a lighter type of port, made with white grapes. Common flavours include citrus peel, roasted nuts, baked apple, and apricot. There is less sweetness to this type of port, and it isn’t aged for as long.
  • Rosé Port – is made with stronger berry flavours including strawberry, raspberry, and cranberry sauce. It usually has a delicious jammy note that gives it a bit more sweetness than the white port, but it’s not as rich as the tawny or ruby port.
  • Tawny Port – gets its name and colour from extended ageing in wooden casks before being bottled. It has mellow flavours of caramel, cloves, cinnamon, hazelnut, fig, and prune.
  • Ruby Port is usually aged for two-three years in vat before being bottled and sold ready to drink.
  • Reserve Port –  it has deep flavours of raspberries, blackberries, chocolate, and cinnamon. It is aged for at least three years before release.
  • Vintage Port – the most expensive Port. It is made in tiny quantities from the best grapes, and only in the very best years. It is aged for two years before being released but can improve for decades in bottle.

How to Drink Port Wine

Serve Port just below room temperature, around 60 °F (16 °C).

Pairing Port Wines with Food

Port wine is best paired with richly flavoured cheeses, chocolate and caramel desserts, salted and smoked nuts, and even sweet-smoky meats (like barbecue). One popular way to serve Ruby Port is on the rocks with a peel of lime.

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How Alcohol Makes You More Creative

Alcohol and Creativity | www.drinks.ng

Whether in form of business innovation, artistic creations, scientific experiments, creativity is something we all crave for – even more than alcohol.

Often times, we engage in certain rituals in the hope to boost our creativity. Meditation, sleep, exercise and alcohol are some of the means through which we try to bring our creativity to life.

We don’t know much about the others, but alcohol certainly is a catalyst for being more creative.

How does alcohol boost creativity?

The answer certainly revolves around the effect of alcohol on the brain. It loosens the brain’s controlling instincts, thus allowing you spontaneous thoughts to infiltrate your head. It is one of such thoughts that births a new idea or solves a persistent problem – creatively.

Getting alcohol into our system usually leads to ‘executive functioning’ in our brain, processes that involve focus and planning. This comes about through an altered state of consciousness induced by alcohol. No wonder people come up with the most amazing thoughts when they have a glass or two of wine, whiskey or cognac.

However, the underlying factor is that getting overly drunk does nothing in getting us to think creatively. Getting tipsy is what triggers the creativity.

Scientists Even Have A Proof

Scientific research has corroborated the fact that a drink can help us become more creative in our thoughts and actions as it frees up the brain to think in a different way.

It doesn’t immediately turn you into Picasso or Einstein, but the equivalent of a pint of beer or a small glass of wine was proven by Austrian scientists to help in unleashing creativity.

‘We wanted to do this study because alcohol is so linked with creativity and great writers like Ernest Hemingway,’ said lead author Dr Mathias Benedek, from the University of Graz in Austria.

‘Previous research has found almost half of the great writers had a history of drinking.

‘We found that a small drink can indeed help with certain aspects of creativity, although it may make hard, focused work more difficult.

‘So it might well work for someone who is sitting down to do creative writing or brainstorming ideas in a boardroom.’

The Research

Seventy participants were given a drink of either beer or non-alcohol beer, which they were unable to distinguish between. Half of the participants were given a 0.5% lager, while the other half were asked to drink a 5.2% beer, which they weren’t able to distinguish between.

They were then given a word association task, which included determining one word linking the three words Swiss, blue and cake. The answer is ‘cheese’ and the second group, who had the stronger beer, scored an average of 6/10 in the test. The other half of drinkers scored an average of 4/10.

The alcohol-drinkers also exceeded in a creative thinking task, in which they had to suggest alternative uses for tyres with “a swing” deemed one of the most creative answers.

 

 

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Which Type of Wine Drinker Are You?

Wine_drinkers | www.drinks.ng

Wine tasting is one of the oldest practices in the world. It is as old as wine production itself and usually involves a systematic procedure in order to properly evaluate the wine.

Tasting of wine usually occurs among connoisseurs, wine enthusiasts and wine makers. However, within the comfort of our homes or on dates in restaurants, each of us is a wine taster. While some of us just take regular sips of our wine, others go through  the “five S” steps – see, swirl, sniff, sip, and savour.

Also, some drinkers are attracted to brands, others are drawn to the taste while others will simply drink any type of wine placed before them. The underlining factor in drinking wine usually lies with the palate of the drinker.

A recent study by Tim Hanni MW has shown that there are mainly four types of wine drinkers according to palate differences and genetics. The study reveals the four ‘vinotypes’ to be sweet, hypersensitive, sensitive and tolerant.

So which type of wine drinker are you?

Sweet Wine Drinkers

Women populate this category because their genetically sweet palate. Sweet wine drinkers are highly selective with their wine choices. They usually end up with light and sweet wines of which rose wines are the most frequent of their choices. For the sweet wine drinker, wines that are either harsh or strong in taste are a turn off.

Hypersensitive Wine Drinkers

Hypersensitive wine drinkers go several steps ahead of the ones with sweet palates.These set of wine drinkers tend to be much more adventurous. Usually they are ready to try out new wines, but at the same time love clean styles. It is quite normal for the hypersensitive wine drinker to go for a wine that is not too loud on flavour.

Sensitive Wine Drinkers

According to Hanni’s study, sensitive wine drinkers are at the centre of the sensitivity spectrum. This is the category were majority of wine drinkers fall into.Sensitive wine drinkers are notably flexible, free-spirited, adaptable and adventurous. Whether it is a sweet wine, clean or strongly-flavoured, this category of wine drinkers are ready to have a sip. With these wine drinkers at your event, you do not have to bother about the style of wine you are serving as they go for any wine type on the menu.

Tolerant Wine Drinkers

Tolerant wine drinkers are the ones whose palates are suited to strong-flavoured wine types. These type of wine drinkers never say no to wines with intense and powerful flavours. For the tolerant wine drinker, the more rich and full-bodied a wine is, the more enjoyable it becomes. Tolerant wine drinkers are almost always in complete wonder as to why others settle for ‘wimpy’ wine styles.

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A Brief History of Wine Glassware

wine-glasses-history | www.drinks.ng

Wines look beautiful in bottles displayed in malls and liquor stores, but they are even more beautiful when poured into a glass. From the aromas that hit the nose to the amazing flavours that crown the palate, drinking wine is an experience that most wine lovers savour in its entirety.

Storing wine in bottles has helped it to age better since the Romans invented glass, but what has defined the wine experience even more is the invention of wine glasses. It is an established fact that various types of glasses enhance the flavours of the beverages poured into it.

Anthony Shishler, MD Mason Fahrenhait, in a recent interview with Spirit magazine,

“The ball on the red wine is larger because the wine needs more air to bring out the flavours. The white wine glass on the other hand has a smaller ball, which keeps the air concentrated above the wine, so when you drink a white wine, you get fruitier, condensed, saturated flavours.”

More than just giving you pleasure from the size and shape of the different wine glasses, knowing the rich history of how wine glasses came to be brings a whole new level to the wine drinking experience.

History of Wine Glasses

The history of wine glasses is almost as old as the history of wines itself. After all, there would have been no distilling of wine if man did not find a way to consume them.

However, the earliest type of wine glasses recorded in history are said to be baked clay goblets. The baked clay goblets were first used by  the Iberians and later by the Britons during the Pleistene age. With the rise of the Bronze age, timber and bronze tankards came into existence and became the main tool for the consumption of wine.

In the early days of the Roman Empire, the Roman emperors and senators were known to have drank wine using silver and pottery goblets characterised by ornate scroll work of pairs of leaves with buds. The Romans also used lead goblets at the time to drink their wines.

Between 500 – 600 AD, a shallow cup with a thin stem was introduced and mainly used by the upper class. sturdy pottery goblets were used by the lower class in Europe. When the Saxons invaded England in the 5th Century AD, they brought with them gold goblets covered in jewels. Alongside these, were horns that when used had to be taken as one drink because they had no stems or legs and had to be laid down.

By the next century, silver was used to produce the horns and goblets for drinking wine. However, the horn cups were not allowed for use in the Church for communion.

Wine drinking soon progressed to the use of wooden tankards by the late 900 AD, and by late 1000’s, clear glass cups were used for the first time to consume wine.

The mid 1300’s experienced the use of the ‘Black Jack’, which was a leather vessel, sewn all round with the join forming a handle with a separate leather base sewn in and lined with pitch to make it watertight. The black jack was in use up till the 1800’s were it is still mentioned in history.

From the 1600’s, there were no shortage of various drinking vessels. Some of the most relevant names of drinking vessels recorded in history include:

Piggin

A leather cup from the Middle Ages.

Goddard

A pewter vessel used in Churches for communion.

Whistle Cup

From the Middle ages, whoever could drink the most for the longest got to blow the whistle as the ‘last man standing’ to order more drink

Wine tasters

A little silver flat bowl with two handles on each side  or just one handle, flat with the top rim. From the Medieval days to taste the contents of bowls to convince guests that nothing was poisoned.

The wine glasses as we know today were first made in the 17th century to the late 18th century. The most popular was a simple goblet with a glass stem.

Other popular wine glasses from that period are:

Jacobite glass

A Freemason glassware that had different designs according to each lodge.

Dice glass

A glass with two dice sealed into the base, used in old taverns to settle who pays for the purchases.

Last drop glass

A glass which featured an engraved man hanging from the yardarm that is not visible till the last drop is drunk.

Today we have various typed of wine glasses, each specifically shaped to cater for each type of wine. This is done to help the wine go to the right area of the tongue, bringing about a unique experience. The most popular wine glasses are made by Reidel company.

For wine tastings, wine glasses called the ISO wine tasting glasses are used. ISO stands for International Standards Organization. Each glass is made to a specification to suit each wine. They are made from clear crystal and have a tapered bowl that help circulate the wine and funnel the vapours to get an accurate ‘nose’. It’s the workhorse wine glass for all reputable wine shows.

Read Anthony Shisler’s interview on Spirit Magazine for more on wine glass types and glassware etiquette.

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What is a Pinot Grigio?

What is a Pinot Grigio | www.drinks.ng

Pinot Grigio is one of the world’s most popular wines. The white wine grape variety is known by a few different names including Pinot Gris in France and Ruländer in Germany.

Pinot Grigio wines vary depending on where they are grown and how they are made. Italian Pinot Grigio is usually light and fruity while French Pinot Gris has more of a mineral flavour. As a mutation of the Pinot Noir grape, it can be found around the world and in a number of different expressions from crisp to velvety and dry to sweet. Being something of a chameleon, the Pinot grape can be found in a variety of colours from pale gold to pink.

Pinot Grigio is an often easy-drinking white from north-eastern Italy. In this part of the world, Pinot Grigio pairs well with a variety of foods and nearly anything from the sea, baring its crisp, sweet fruit flavours, brisk acidity and quaffable personality. But in other parts of the world, such as Alsace and France, Pinot Grigio puts away its light heart and wears a shroud of structure and spice. In these parts, they are serious wines that can sometimes need time in the cellar to fully express their potential.

When it comes to Pinot Grigio, you have to know what buying because each style comes with a whole new variety of food pairing dos and don’ts. Over the years, experts and enthusiasts have tasted it from all over the world and even delved into “orange” style wines which often use Pinot Grigio, pairing them with different recipes to find what pairs best. What they’ve all learnt is these wines are well-worth their attention and ours.

It is best to drink Pinot Grigio when it’s young and it’s the perfect choice for warm weather like we have almost throughout the year in most parts of Nigeria. It pairs well with light food like chicken and seafood, but the acid is also great for balancing some rich sauces and slightly spicy edibles. It’s best to avoid serving Pinot Grigio with acidic dishes like tomato sauce and citrus.

We know how intimidating pronouncing some French and Italian wines could be, especially when you need to order them in that fancy restaurant on that important date. Pinot Grigio is pronounced “pee-noh gree-jhee-oh”. The “t” is silent and the second “g” rolls of the tongue as in “gist” and not “game”. Pinot means “pine cone” and it is probably called this because the grapes grow in clusters of that shape. Grigio means “gray”, which may be describing greenish-gray colour of the grapes even though they come in other colours.

As mentioned earlier, Pinot Grigio is one of the most popular wines in the world and many say this is because more often than not, it is pleasing to the palette. However, its popularity is a reason why wine snobs may turn their noses up faster at them than they will at a Merlot or Chardonnay. But what do they know? Now that you know a lot more about Pinot Grigio, you should pick up a bottle or two and enjoy them.