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We wine writers should revise our terminology when we speak of such Burgundy houses as Drouhin, Jadot, and Latour as being "négociants." "Négociant" is a French term used widely in both Bordeaux and Burgundy for merchants who buy grapes or raw wines from many smaller, independent growers and turn them into finished wines, usually blended and usually with regional appellations on their labels. Done well, it is a commendable art, one that allows us to drink good wines at reasonable prices.
"Most of the Burgundy négociants often own many parcels in the best vineyards" But, unlike Bordeaux, where a négociant may own a small château or two, most of the Burgundy négociants often own many parcels in the best vineyards — the premier cru and grand cru — which they cultivate and make into their own wines. Of course, in Burgundy some independent growers trust the négociants to do a better job even in the vineyard than they could do by themselves, so their wines are in essence more propriétaire than négociant.
Which brings me to the term I think better applies when referring in general to Drouhin and its colleagues — propriétaires/négociants. I intend to use from now on. And it brings me to four wines, all from the propriétaire/négociant Joseph Drouhin, which were made from individual vineyards in the commune of Nuits-Saint-Georges from the difficult 2010 vintage.
To be truthful, the four are more alike than different, which shouldn’t be unusual for wines made from the same producer in one commune.
♦ 2010 Joseph Drouhin Nuits-Saint-Georges ($63). This is a commune wine — from no one vineyard — made from purchased pinot noir grapes whose growers use Drouhin standards of dense planting and no fertilizers or chemical sprays. It is typical of the commune in that the wines are more firm than flowery or fruity, although that will change in four or five years as the wine ages in the bottle. In fact, it has a tartness straight out of the bottle that mellows with airing — a good indication of how it will develop with time. The fruits are cherry and red raspberry, and they are followed by chalkiness and lightly felt tannins in the finish.
♦ 2010 Joseph Drouhin "Damodes" Ier Cru Nuits-Saint-Georges ($102). Here, raw wine was purchased and "elevated" — that is, taken from a basic wine and polished into a finished one. I found the wine to be somewhat floral — a "pastel" fruit with mascarpone notes — on the nose. Generous cherry and cranberry fruit are followed by an enjoyable, somewhat-tangy finish.
♦ 2010 Joseph Drouhin "Procès" Ier Cru Nuits-Saint-Georges ($105). This wine is owned by Laurent Drouhin, one of four siblings who run the family-owned company. The wine is the firmest of the four with excellent structure, and it also has more savory notes in aroma and taste.
♦ 2010 Joseph Drouhin "Cailles" Ier Cru Nuits-Saint-Georges ($102). Of the four, this is the one that needs the most time — or, as we say, it is "less generous" at present. Also made from purchased wine that is elevated, it has the most-noticeable barrel flavors, which gives it a bit more present personality, and it is chalky and minerally. But its tightness argues for not opening the bottle for a few years, or at least to decant it for many hours if you, like this reviewer, must try it now.
Wente Vineyards' Burgundy Pot Roast
Try this melt-in-your-mouth pot roast recipe with burgandy wine from Wente Vineyards!
Pair With: Wente Vineyards Sandstone Merlot
Source: Recipe and photo courtesy of America’s Test Kitchen and Wente Vineyards
1 (5- to 6-pound) boneless beef chuck-eye roast, pulled apart at seam into 2 separate roasts, fat trimmed, and roasts tied individually at 1-inch intervals
salt and pepper
4 slices bacon, halved
4 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 onion, chopped
¼ cup all-purpose flour
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 (750-ml) bottle red wine
2 cups beef broth
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
2 cups frozen pearl onions
½ cup beef broth
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons sugar
1 pound white mushrooms, trimmed and quartered
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
FOR THE POT ROAST:
1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 300° F. Pat beef dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Cook bacon in Dutch oven over medium heat until crisp, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to paper towel&ndash lined plate. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat from pot and heat over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add beef and brown on all sides, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to plate.
2. Add carrots and onion to now-empty pot and cook over medium heat until browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in flour and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Whisk in wine and bring to simmer, scraping up any browned bits. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until reduced by half and slightly thickened, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in broth, thyme, bay leaves, and bacon. Return beef and any accumulated juices to pot and bring to simmer. Place large sheet of aluminum foil over pot and cover tightly with lid. Bake until fork slips easily in and out of beef, 2½ to 3 hours.
FOR THE VEGETABLES:
3. When beef is nearly done, bring onions, broth, butter, and sugar to boil in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook until onions are tender, 5 to 8 minutes. Uncover, increase heat to medium-high, and cook until all liquid evaporates, 3 to 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and ¼ teaspoon salt and cook until vegetables are browned and glazed, 8 to 12 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and set aside until beef is done.
4. Transfer beef to carving board, tent with foil, and let rest for 30 minutes. Let braising liquid settle, then skim any fat from surface with large kitchen spoon. Bring liquid to boil over medium-high heat and cook until reduced to 3 cups and slightly thickened, 15 to 20 minutes.
5. Strain sauce through fine-mesh strainer into 4-cup liquid measuring cup discard solids. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reheat vegetables over medium heat, about 3 minutes. Stir parsley into vegetables. Discard twine, slice beef against grain into ½-inch-thick slices, and transfer to platter. Spoon vegetables around beef. Pour 1½ cups sauce over beef. Serve, passing remaining sauce separately.
Use a dry red wine, such as Burgundy or Côtes du Rhône. Don&rsquot thaw the pearl onions before cooking.
Grand Boisset Premier Cru Burgundy Wine Tasting and Dinner Featuring Neil Ruane
Please join us Thursday, November 19th at 6:00 PM, for a guided wine tasting and dinner featuring the fine Burgundies of Jean-Claude Boisset. In 1961, Boisset founded his namesake négociant winery in Nuits-St.-Georges. The winery is housed in a former Ursulines convent where winemaker Grégory Patriat strives for authentic wines that are naturally expressive of their terroirs. Today his wines are considered among the best in Burgundy. One of the wines we will be tasting is his Clos de La Roche Grand Cru 2012, which was voted World’s Best Red Wine at the International Wine Challenge. Neil Ruane, export director for the Boisset Collection, and our very own “Napoléon” in all of our Bastille Day Celebrations will lively guide us through the magic and history of one of the most fascinating wine regions in the world, before he returns to France on his final wine dinner with us. Neil returns to France on December 1, so this delectable and lively Experience will be very special send-off with amazing wines, and good fellowship, indeed. Bravo Neil and Merci!
A reception featuring seasonal canapés and Crémant de Bourgogne will be followed by a guided tasting of Premier and Grand Cru red Burgundies, to be followed in turn by a sumptuous Burgundian dinner created by Chef Jacques.
Very Limited Seating
2002 Burgundy Wine Tasting
"About the Wine Spectator and Robert Parker - samples submitted to publications are doctored constantly . If you think you're buying the wines reviewed, you're wrong. Go to tastings and decide for yourself. Take all reviews with a gigantic grain of salt."
-- John Miller
John Miller is the Director of Training and Education for the Boston Wine Company, and has been with the company for 10 years. John held a tasting of 2002 Burgundies in central Massachusetts, free to the public, with the aim to educate all both about the wonders of good Burgundy wines and to show them how to believe in their own palates. The quotes in this review belong to John.
I am an enthusiastic proponent of people tasting for themselves, and deciding for themselves what to like. The Burgundy tasting was a fantastic event for all who attended. Be sure to attend tastings in your own area, to learn for yourself what wines best suit your palate! In the meantime, read through these notes to get ideas and to learn about wines.
For those new to Burgundy wines, Burgundy is a region of France that only grows two grapes - Chardonnay (white) and Pinot Noir (red). This region has grown these wines for hundreds of years. The 2002 harvest was an extraordinary vintage, producing great wines both in the lower priced and higher priced ranges. The year was great for both red and white wines.
John pointed out that "There is no area where you can spend more money and get worse wine than Burgundy. But when you hit a great one, it's just magic". He explained that part of the issue is with size of production. "The problem with Burgundy is that production there is microscopic." A given winery might only make 3 barrels of wine - i.e. 75 cases for the entire world. The wineries are often tiny plots of land. "One can drive north to south in the Cote d'or in 1 hour. Most wineries really don't make that much money." You tend to pay more for Burgundy because the wine is so scarce and is hard to make.
John spoke for a while about tasting wines in general. He suggested that newcomers to wine "buy a great producer's cheapest wine" since those wines are made with the same skill and quality as the higher end wines. He also added, "If you eat different foods every night of the week, you should drink a different wine every night of the week" because a wine should pair well with the food it is drunk with. John has no one favorite wine - it depends on the food being eaten, the heat or cold, the weather, and other situations. When visiting a wine region, John suggested for visitors to "go to restaurants and ask what the best wines of the area are". The restaurant owners will typically know which are the best and recommend those.
John talked frequently about how each person's palate is quite unique. "We're dealing with a totally subjective area like music and art", he pointed out. "If you like it, you like it." No one taster - no matter how experienced - can speak for others. "If you dislike it, there's probably someone who likes this characteristic of it."
John spoke about how for example some people are very sensitive to corked wines, but some are not. While some of a person's tasting ability is genetic, much of a person's palate depends on where that person lives! As you spend months in a given location, your nose gets used to the local smells and starts to ignore them. Since most of a wine's flavor comes from its aroma, what you sense in a wine can depend on what aromas your nose is typically "used to" in your home climate. There are other factors in tasting, too. For example, women have more taste buds then men. In the end, many things determine what a given person likes and dislikes. It's important for each of us to determine for ourselves what wines we enjoy the most.
Cynthia Lohr noticed a small raptor in a tree “guarding” J. Lohr’s Pinot Noir vines in Monterey County from unwanted pests.
Quick and easy suggested cheeses, fruits, nuts, and charcuterie choices for pairing and sharingCheeses Gruyère Taleggio Feta Monterey Jack Swiss Fruits Dried or Fresh Cherries Plums Raspberries Blueberries Dates Charcuterie Prosciutto Jamón (Spanish ham) Mortadella Dry-Cured Salami Summer Sausage foie gras Nuts Hazelnuts Toasted Almonds Walnuts Pistachios
Burgundy Wines That Won’t Break the Bank
WHEN WINE CONNOISSEURS talk about Burgundy, they are invariably referencing famous three- and four-figure grand crus like Chambertin and Montrachet. And yet wines produced in more humble appellations like Marsannay, Auxey-Duresses or even Côte de Beaune can also provide a real taste of the region—and at a price that regular drinkers can actually afford.
The word “affordability” is rarely associated with wines from this region of France, especially in recent years. Burgundy is currently one of the priciest precincts in the winemaking world. Every serious drinker seems to be focused on buying its best bottles, to the exclusion of almost everything else, including that former collector staple, first-growth Bordeaux.
In fact, when it comes to Bordeaux versus Burgundy, wine merchant Geoffrey Troy, of New York Wine Warehouse in Long Island City, N.Y., said bluntly: “Bordeaux is dead.” Mr. Troy isn’t alone in his opinion wine professionals have been declaring Bordeaux dead for several years thanks to a few dismal vintages and excessive prices. The Burgundy market, meanwhile, has been hot since the 2005 vintage, according to Mr. Troy. He noted that many of his top clients have transitioned from Bordeaux to Burgundy, making the market for the region’s best wines “stronger than ever.”
More On Wine
Message in a Bottle
Jeff Zacharia, president of Zachys, a wine retailer and auction house with offices in White Plains, N.Y., and Hong Kong, said he has seen a similar trend at auction. While prices of Bordeaux have remained stable, according to Mr. Zacharia, “prices of Burgundy continue to push higher and higher.”
One explanation, which any economist would love, is a matter of scarcity. The amount of wine produced in Burgundy has always been much smaller than that made in Bordeaux. The latter is the largest producer of appellation d’origine controlée, or AOC, wines in France, whereas the former is roughly a quarter of the size and produces only 3% of the country’s AOC wines. Burgundy’s supply has been further diminished in recent years in 2012 and 2013, bad weather of all sorts cut some producers’ total harvests in half.
Still, a surprising number of very good, very affordable Burgundies are available right now—even if they aren’t the kind of wines a collector might covet. As Mr. Troy said, none of his big Burgundy collectors would drink a Marsannay or a Rully, let alone a Bourgogne. Not even on an ordinary Tuesday night. “They might drink a premier cru or a village wine,” he said.
A village wine is a few rungs above a basic Bourgogne in the Burgundian hierarchy, where wines are ranked according to place rather than producer, as they are in Bordeaux. The more specific the place, the better the wine—in theory at least. For example, Bourgogne is made from grapes planted anywhere in the region, and consequently is the lowest-ranking wine. Bottles that carry a more specific place of origin—such as Côte de Beaune, an appellation of the Côte-d’Or subregion—are one step up, followed by village wines identified by the name of a town. Further up the quality ladder are wines from the region’s almost 600 premier cru-designated vineyards. The highest classification, grand cru, goes to just 39 vineyards and is concentrated in two of Burgundy’s five subregions, with 32 in Côte-d’Or and seven in Chablis.
Without a grand cru to their name, the other subregions—Mâconnais, Côte Chalonnaise and Beaujolais—are much less fashionable. But this also means their land is much more affordable. These areas are now home to more and more ambitious young producers unable to afford land in the Côte-d’Or, where a hectare (almost 2.5 acres) can cost more than €1 million ($1.1 million).
Becky Wasserman-Hone, a highly regarded importer based in the town of Beaune, is a fan of simple Burgundies, saying they can help aspiring drinkers understand both the region and a producer’s style. And though she has spent her career helping to make famous such sought-after producers as Denis Bachelet, Michel Lafarge and Comtes Lafon, Ms. Wasserman-Hone said she is dismayed at the frequency with which these more affordable wines are overlooked. “There are rarely headlines about the Boy Scout who helped an old age pensioner across the street, and rarely any thought given to ‘Burgundy on a Budget,’ ” she wrote in an email.
For my own budget Burgundies, I decided I wouldn’t spend more than $35 a bottle. That may sound like a lot for “budget” wine, but even Bourgognes from some top producers can cost close to $100 a bottle. I looked for bottles from good producers in every subregion—save Beaujolais, which warrants a column all its own.
&ldquo Wines produced in Burgundy’s more humble appellations can provide a real taste of the region—at an affordable price. &rdquo
While a few examples were less than thrilling, most were quite good. The 2013 Domaine Faiveley Mercurey Clos Rochette ($31), a full-bodied white from Côte Chalonnaise, was a standout. Producer Erwan Faiveley called it “one of, if not the best value white we have in our portfolio,” which includes many famous grand crus.
Another terrific Côte Chalonnaise was the 2013 Domain Dureuil-Janthial Vauvry Rully Premier Cru ($36). A wine of great texture and depth from the Rully appellation, produced by the talented young Vincent Dureuil-Janthial, it justified slightly blowing my budget. The wines of Rully have become increasingly fashionable, delivering unexpected quality for the price.
There were some memorable wines from the unchic Côte-d’Or appellations of Marsannay and Auxey-Duresses. The former is the northernmost appellation in Côte-d’Or, near famed Gevrey-Chambertin while the latter is far south, next to the much more famous Meursault. The 2013 Domaine Bart Marsannay Les Champs Salomon was a big, rich, showy wine—and a great deal at $26. On the opposite side of the scale, and the other end of Côte-d’Or, the 2012 Domaine Jean & Gilles Lafouge Auxey-Duresses Premier Cru Les Duresses ($33) was a delicate and savory red.
I also found several notable Chablis, including the wonderfully minerally 2014 Patrick Piuze Terroir de Chablis ($22), the 2014 Moreau-Naudet ($29) and the refreshing and bright 2014 Jean-Marc Brocard Chablis Domaine Sainte Claire ($16).
I shared many of my finds with friends, all of whom were wine lovers but not collectors. Unaware that the wines were obscure and/or lacking in status, my friends were pleased with the wines’ generous character, lively acidity and true sense of place. These were Burgundies without pretense yet still worthy of praise.
Oenofile // Five Bargain Burgundies That Are More Than You Bargain for
From left: 2013 Domaine Bart Marsannay Les Champs Salomon 2013 Domaine Rapet Pere & Fils Pernand-Vergelesses Les Combottes 2013 Domaine Faiveley Mercurey Clos Rochette 2013 Domain Dureuil-Janthial Vauvry Rully Premier Cru 2014 Jean-Marc Brocard Chablis Domaine Sainte Claire
2013 Domaine Bart Marsannay Les Champs Salomon $26
Leading producers in the overlooked Marsannay appellation on the northernmost end of the Côte-d’Or, Martin and Pierre Bart have turned out a particularly powerful and impressively well-structured wine.
2013 Domaine Rapet Pere & Fils Pernand-Vergelesses Les Combottes $34
Both red and white wines are produced in this Côte de Beaune region close to the grand cru appellation of Corton. This minerally white from a highly regarded producer is restrained and elegant.
2013 Domaine Faiveley Mercurey Clos Rochette $31
This wine from the often-underrated Côte Chalonnaise’s Mercurey appellation is a rich, barrel-aged white that Erwan Faiveley believes may be the biggest bargain white in the estate’s portfolio.
2013 Domain Dureuil-Janthial Vauvry Rully Premier Cru $36
I went $1 over my budget for this terrific expression of Pinot Noir by Vincent Dureuil-Janthial, one of the great talents of the Rully appellation. Produced in a premier cru vineyard, it’s a beautifully balanced, graceful wine.
2014 Jean-Marc Brocard Chablis Domaine Sainte Claire $16
There are many great bargains to be found in Chablis, the northernmost subregion of Burgundy. This basic bottling—a crisp, dry, almost austere white from Jean-Marc Brocard—is definitely among the best.
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A Cheese-Tasting Party
A cheese tasting follows the same rationale as a wine tasting. Start with the mildest cheese and progress to the strongest. For an almost spur-of-the-moment party that requires no cooking, try a cheese-tasting buffet, mating each cheese with a complementary fruit or vegetable. Wine enhances cheese and offers many options, from a tasting of California Zinfandels or French Beaujolais, to a choice of Merlots, Pinot Noirs, or Cabernet Sauvignons from two vintages. Offer a combination of at least six cheeses, each paired with a fruit or vegetable:
- Jarlsberg with Golden Delicious or Gala apples
- Havarti with red bell peppers
- Gorgonzola with fennel
- Boursin or herb-flavored natural cream cheese with cucumbers
- Port-Salut with Comice pears
- Provolone with pineapple
- Brie with Muscat grapes
- Vermont or Canadian Cheddar with Fuji apples
- Goat cheese with mushrooms
- Baguettes, focaccia, water biscuits
Shopping: Count on one-half bottle of wine and 4 ounces of cheese per person. Figure on 1-1/2 whole fruits and a smaller amount of vegetables per person. For 24 guests, offer a combination of 3 cheeses and 3 fruits and 3 cheeses and 3 vegetables. A sample list would include 12 apples, 12 pears, 2 whole pineapples, 8 red peppers, 2 heads fennel, and 4 cucumbers
Serving: Let the cheeses warm to room temperature for about 1 hour before serving, depending on the kind of cheese and the heat of the day. Serve in wedges or blocks and accompany with a cheese plane, slicer, or cheese knives so guests can cut their own. Arrange and serve the cheeses beginning with the mildest and ending with the strongest in flavor. Thinly slice the baguette, cut the focaccia into squares, and offer the crackers in a basket. If you like, place a different wine at each cheese station.
Wine and Cheese Combinations
With countless varieties of both cheese and wine, the possibilities are endless. Yet certain rules apple. Often, pairing the regional wines with local cheeses makes and ideal combination, such as Muenster with Alsatian Gewurztraminer, chevres with Sancerre, or Roquefort with sauternes. Consider other beverages, too: tart cider or Calvados has a natural affinity for soft-ripened cheeses such as Camembert, and beer is a good partner for strong cheeses. Good combinations include:
- Asiago with lively Piedmontese reds or Cabernet Sauvignon
- Brie or Camembert with Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux reds
- Cheddar with many reds: Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Shiraz, Burgundies, pair the quality of the cheese with a similar-quality wine, or beer
- Chevre: soft types with Merlot, French country reds, and dry whites such as Sauvignon Blanc and Sancerre, aged chevre, such as taupiere or Fourmes, with Cabernet Sauvignon
- Emmentaler, Gruyere, Edam, Jarlsberg, and Gouda with fruity reds or whites, Pinot Noir
- Feta with dry Greek whites, retsina, ouzo
- Fontina with Merlot, Pinot Grigio
- Gorgonzola with Barbera, Provencal reds
- Mascarpone with Moselle, light sweet whites
- Monterey Jack with Sauvignon Blanc
- Mozzarella with a light Chianti
- Parmigiano Reggiano with wines of the Piedmont: Barolo, Barbaresco, Chianti, Pinot Noir
- Roquefort with late-harvest Zinfandel, minor sauternes, Rhone reds
- Stilton with tawny port, red Rioja, Barolo
Cheese: Quick and Easy Recipes for Elegant Entertaining
Nestled between slices of fresh bread, baked into a souffle, sprinkled atop pasta, or accompanied by a glass of wine and a sliver of fruit, cheese is as perfect for entertaining as it is for everyday snacks and meals. Cheese includes a host of delectable recipes and menu suggestions featuring such international favorites as Parmesan, Gorgonzola, Edam, Cheddar, Gouda, Brie, and more.
Short descriptions of two dozen varieties of cheeses and suggested pairings with wines, fruits, and breads, as well as three dozen quick and easy recipes for cheese appetizers, soups, salads, entrees, and desserts, will help make your next family meal or social gathering a delicious success. Enjoy a French Onion Soup baked to golden brown perfection with melted Jarlsberg. Savor a tasty sandwich of Grilled Eggplant with Mozzarella or of tangy Monterey Jack with Chutney and Prosciutto. Or serve a classic Greek Seafood Casserole of Shrimp and Feta as a delightful light supper followed by a luscious Coeur a la Creme with Raspberries for a tantalizing dessert.
Illustrated with charming watercolors, Cheese is an elegant and compact guide to a tasty and versatile food-and it makes the perfect gift.
Food has been Lou Pappas's passion for most of her life. She is the author of 28 cookbooks, including 8 other titles in the Artful Kitchen series-Biscotti, Cheesecake, Holiday Feasts, Pesto, Cinnamon, Chutneys & Relishes, Ginger, and Pizzette-published by Chronicle Books. Her many food, wine, and travel articles have appeared in national magazines and newspapers. A former newspaper food editor for the Peninsula Times Tribune, Ms. Pappas lives in Palo Alto, California.
Quick and Easy Recipes for Elegant Entertaining
by Lou Seibert Pappas
Illustrations by Melissa Sweet
(Reprinted with permission)
All About Cheese
This page originally published as a FoodDay article (circa 1997).
Alex Guarnaschelli's Ninth Avenue Childhood Baked Ziti from Cook with Me
Megan duBois/Eat This, Not That!
You might know Alex Guarnaschelli from Food Network shows like Chopped, The Kitchen, or Iron Chef. She's known for her approachable food that pleases the masses, including her take on baked ziti. This was a classic comfort food dish I couldn't get enough of.
How easy was the recipe to follow and make? The recipe was fairly easy to follow and make. One thing I didn't like about this recipe was how the steps were laid out. It made it seem like you had to do each individual task one at a time, which isn't the case. Next time, I'll know that I can make the sauce and boil the pasta at the same time and cut down on the amount of prep and cook time for the overall dish.
How easy are the ingredients to acquire? You likely already have at least half of the required ingredients in your house right now. This is a very basic recipe, using things like garlic, onions, canned tomatoes, and dried pasta. Many of these are considered pantry staples. I would whip up this dish again on a night I didn't feel like cooking much knowing I likely have everything already and wouldn't need to run to the grocery store.
The look of the pasta coming out of the oven: The dish came out of the oven bubbling like a cauldron straight from the pasta heavens. It smelled like garlic and basil, and the cheese on top was perfectly browned. This was a dish I couldn't wait to dive into.
Overall taste and thoughts: Alex's baked ziti was one that will please your entire family, and it looks like something that took almost all day, but it only took about an hour from prep to table. I would definitely make this dish again, if not just for the leftovers the next day, which were even better than the first night because the pasta had a chance to soak up more of that tasty sauce.
Ultimate Guide to the Burgundy Wine Region
When your friend tells you she bought a new burgundy car, you probably know that means it is a shade of the color red. But what if that friend told you she bought a bottle of Burgundy? Would you know that means that she bought a bottle of French wine? Considering what burgundy signifies in terms of color, would you be expecting a red or a white wine? Actually, it could be either one. It may surprise you to find out that the Burgundy wine region actually produces more white wine than red wine. Each year, the Burgundy wine region produces about 180 million bottles of wine. Of those millions of bottles, 65 percent are dry white wine and only 35 percent are red wines [source: Terroir France].
You might wonder how large this region is if it can produce 180 million bottles annually. When you see the Burgundy region highlighted out from the rest of France, it is an unusually shaped region, looking like a long strip of land running north and south. It expands over an area of about 12,000 square miles (31,500 square km) in central east France [source: Saunders].
Burgundy separates itself from other wine regions in France. Rather than being divided mainly between a few large vineyards, the region is divided between several thousand smaller vineyards and growers. Each grower's land varies in size, ranging from small to large. This size difference means that some growers simply focus on one particular wine while others are able to produce a dozen different wines or more [source: Cannavan].
In this article, you will learn about the history and culture of this region, the agriculture behind the great wines and the most famous red and white wines of the region.
Burgundy Wine History and Culture
The Burgundy wine region's rich history stretches back many centuries and involves revolutions, churches and the government. The oldest written reference to the region being a hub of wine production is from Eumenes' Discources in A.D. 312. We know that the Romans were the first to bring grape vines to the area to begin the planting process. By the time the Middle Ages rolled in, monks were managing the vineyards spread throughout the area. There are records from A.D. 865 of monks making wine in the Saint-Martin-de-Tours area and selling it in nearby towns. Eventually that wine made it to Parisian markets [source: Sonkin].
In 1395, Duke Philip the Bold created laws dictating a certain level of quality and standards for Burgundy winemakers. Then in 1416, King Charles VI officially set the boundaries of the Burgundy region, stretching from Sens to Macon. It was clear to those in charge that the wine that Burgundy produced was special enough to be distinct [source: Burgundy Wines].
Burgundy wine wasn't only enjoyed by the locals in the country, thanks to trade agreements with other European regions. There are records showing that Chablis, a famous white wine of the region, was sent on boats to England and Belgium. When the French Revolution happened in 1789, many of the monasteries where the wine was produced were destroyed. The vineyards were then broken up into smaller plots of land, and that's why there are so many small growers in the Burgundy region today.
The Appellation Controlée, often abbreviated AOC or AC, started as a government program in 1935 in response to the fraud spurred by the vine blights in the late 19th century. The AOC is in charge of designating, controlling and protecting the geography and quality of wines, in addition to other foodstuffs like cheese and whiskey. The AOC has now divided Burgundy into strict, smaller regions in order to designate names [source: Wine Pros].
10 Kale Smoothie Recipes That Actually Taste Delicious
I’m a smoothie-lover all year round, but I find I drink them the most when the weather starts getting warmer. Something about summer makes me crave a tasty beverage, and a healthy, delicious kale smoothie is my go-to! Of course, finding the perfect kale smoothie recipes can be tricky, since most of the time you don’t actually want to taste the kale. It’s all about balancing out your blend with other tasty flavors, froom berries to bananas to add-ins like ginger, cinnamon and maca powder.
If you don’t know, kale is pretty much the number one food you should be making an effort to work into your everyday diet. It’s rich in fiber, vitamins, antioxidants and calcium, and it’s an easy ingredient to sneak into yummy recipes without having to taste it full-on. If you have a go-to green smoothie recipe you’re already obsessed with, you can swap out any spinach for kale and end up with a similar flavor, but if you need a bit more inspo, there are 10 tasty treats below to try out as you please. From classic green drinks to dessert-level berry blends to ultra-clean detox options, there’s a kale smoothie on this list you’re bound to enjoy—and your body will thank you for it.
Whether you’re trying to improve your diet or just need a refreshing summer snack, these smoothies are great options you can whip up in 15 minutes or less. Just blend, pour and sip! Read on for 10 irresistible takes on the perfect kale smoothie.