The Hippo

HOME| ADVERTISING| CONTACT US|

 
Oct 24, 2014







NEWS & FEATURES

POLITICAL

FOOD & DRINK

ARTS

MUSIC & NIGHTLIFE

POP CULTURE



BEST OF
CLASSIFIEDS
ADVERTISING
CONTACT US
PAST ISSUES
ABOUT US
MOBILE UPDATES
LIST MY CALENDAR ITEM






Winter Wine Festival

This year, Wentworth by the Sea’s Winter Wine Festival kicks off in February, about a week after the state’s Wine Week. Here is the schedule for the New Castle hotel’s festival, which will run from Friday, Feb. 3, through Saturday, March 17. All tickets can be purchased at wentworth.com.

• The 8th Annual Grand Tasting Reception will be held Friday, Feb. 3, at 7 p.m., and feature hundreds of wines from around the world. Hors d’oeuvres will be served. Tickets cost $69.95.

• The Bogle in Blue Jeans “Not So Grand” Vintner’s Dinner
will be held Saturday, Feb, 4, at 7 p.m., with a reception at 6 p.m. Robbie LaBlanc of Bogle Vineyards will perform with his band after the four-course meal. Tickets cost $89.95.

• A Heidsieck and Stonewall Kitchen Bubbles and Jazz Brunch will be held Sundays, Feb. 5, 12, 19 & 26 and March 4, 11 & 18. The brunch, complete with chef-attended stations, oysters on the half shell and dessert, will include Piper Heidsieck Champagne. A jazz duo will perform. Tickets cost $44.95.

• The Voyage Français Reception
will be held Friday, Feb. 10, at 7 p.m. Sheilah McGovern of Vineyard Brands will present a variety of French wines and hors d’oeuvres will be served. Tickets cost $64.95.

• The Grand Vintner’s Dinner, which will feature French wines from Vineyard Brands and imported cheeses from La Cave a Vin, will be held Saturday, Feb. 11, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $99.95.

• A Valentine’s Day Grand Vintner’s Dinner
featuring Veuve Clicquot will be held Tuesday, Feb. 14, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course sweetheart dinner will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $129.95.

• The J. Lohr Vineyards & Winery Grand Vintner’s Dinner
will be held Friday, Feb. 17, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. The dinner will be created by guest chef Patrick Soucy of The District in Portsmouth and attended by Shauna Troy, New England regional manager and co-owner of J Lohr Vineyards. Tickets cost $99.95.

• Celebrate Mardi Gras with a Fat Tuesday Celebration Dinner
with Jerry Prial of Debachery and guest chef Johnny Espeland of 106 Kitchen and Bar on Saturday, Feb. 18, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception starting at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $84.95.

• The Merriam Vineyards Grand Vintner’s Dinner
with owner/winemaker Peter Merriam will be held Friday, Feb. 24, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $99.95.

• The Sommelier Smackdown featuring certified sommeliers Sarah Mackinley and Jess Sutton will be held Saturday, Feb. 25,  and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. Mackinley and Sutton will go head to head, pairing wines for the meal. Tickets cost $99.95.

• The il Gusto Del Vino Italiano Reception will be held Friday, March 2, at 7 p.m. Sarah McKinley of Perfecta wines and Jess Sutton of RP imports will be pouring tastes of a variety of Italian wines from their portfolios. Italian-inspired hors d’oeuvres will be served. Tickets cost $64.96.

• A Grand Vintner’s Dinner with guest chef Ryan Phillips of La Bella Vita Restaurant featuring Italian wines from Angelini Wines president Julius Angelini will be held Saturday, March 3, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $99.95.

• A Spellbound and Medusa Winery Grand Vintner’s Dinner with guest chef Simon Lampert of Four Restaurant will be held Friday, March 9, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $99.95.

•  A Frei Brothers Grand Vintner’s Dinner with Jim Collins of E&J Gallo Winery will be held Saturday, March 10, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $99.95.

• A Peter Paul Wines Grand Vintner’s Dinner with Jude Blake and guest chef Peter Metsch of Mombo Restaurant will be held Friday, March 16, and begin with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m.

• The Grand Closing Vintner’s Dinner celebrating Jess Jackson with Winemaker Randy Ullom and guest chef Ben Knack of Bedford Village Inn will be held Saturday, March 17, beginning with a passed hors d’oeuvres reception, at 6 p.m. The four-course dinner will start at 7 p.m. Jackson, the founder of Kendall Jackson winery, died in April. Tickets cost $99.95.





Rediscover the Old World
Why wine-lovers should remember France

01/12/12



Say bonjour to some of the French wines that are filling shelves at wine shops across the United States.

“French wines, I think, are becoming more popular because they have a real sense of place. ... it’s the whole idea of terroir,” said Roz Angoff, of A Grape Affair in Portsmouth. Angoff received her Bordeaux Master Certification through the French Wine Society last year.

“Terroir” is a term used to encompass everything relating to the grape itself — the soil and climate it is grown in, where it is in the vineyard, how many grapes are on the vine, the age of the vine, what happens to it at the winery. “All of those things relate to terroir,” Angoff said. “You get it less from domestic wines because there is more of a sense of … trying to keep a consistent brand.”

“A Beringer cabernet sauvignon will have a certain flavor profile and will taste pretty much the same year to year, they do that through a lot of technology in the winery, but I think French wines have more of a terroir quality to them more than a branding” she said.

The terroir, Angoff said, can lend a little bit of surprise when it comes to the notes found in French wines. French wines, she added, are typically earthier than New World wines, which tend to boast a more fruit-forward flavor.

“You’re tasting the soil,” she said of the minerals found in French wines. “You’re tasting where it’s from.”

Wine in France is named after the region in which the grapes are produced: Bordeaux, Beaujolais, Rhone, etc. Bordeaux wines can also be produced in satellite areas of the country, Angoff said. Domestic, or New World, wines are named for the grape varietal used.

Bordeaux-style blends are often referred to as Meritage in the U.S.

“That is a relatively new term to describe a domestic Bordeaux-style blend,” Angoff said. “They are similar in varietals and try to get a similar flavor profile.”

A Bordeaux is a blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc, malbec, petit verdot and carmenere grapes. The white grapes found in white Bordeaux blends are sauvignon blanc, semillon and muscadelle. merlot, cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc are the most common red varietals found in the Bordeaux region of France and are therefore most often the focus of the blends.

Angoff said it’s a hedge for winemakers to blend their wines. “Every grape grows at a different time, flowers at a different time,” she said. “Merlot ripens earlier than cabernet sauvignon, so that if you have a cold snap at the end of a season, you can have more merlot [in your blend] … blends change year to year in France because of those kinds of traditions.”

While not all grapes in Bordeaux wines ripen on the vine at the same time, Angoff said the blend gets warmer with age: “The aging literally mellows it out,” she said.

Serge Dore, of Serge Dore Selections in New York, works with winemakers in France to bring their wines to the U.S. He arranged for many of those winemakers to take part in this year’s Winter Wine Spectacular, including Amelie Aubert, a seventh-generation winemaker from Bordeaux.

Dore called Bordeaux “the most important region of production in the world.”

“Wherever you go … wherever you produce wine, the Bordeaux name always comes up,” he said. “Everyone knows Bordeaux.” Dore said many wines are modeled after the Bordeaux blend because “it means security, it means quality.”

Growing climates also vary by region in France. Bordeaux and Champagne have “a little bit of an Atlantic climate” as they border the ocean and are hit with many storms off the Atlantic.

Battle of the bubbles

Don’t let the bubbles fool you. Like all other French wines, Champagne is named after the region in which it is grown and boasts the flavor profile of its terroir. Champagne, Angoff said, is grown on the cusp of how far north grapes can grow successfully in the region.

“Every year there is a little bit of a question mark and that is one of the reasons why the wine tastes so wonderful,” Angoff said. “They actually harvest the grapes a little bit on the unripe side.” The grapes, she added, are not yet ripe enough to produce a still wine.

Two fermentation processes are used in the production of Champagne. The first breaks the grapes down into still wine. The wine is then bottled for the second fermentation. When yeast and sugar are added to the bottle product the carbon monoxide is trapped inside, resulting in the formation of bubbles. The yeast then begins to die and rests on lees — deposits of dead yeast cells — for a period of time.

“Depending on the quality of the champagne, the longer it rests on them, the better it is,” Angoff said. “The lees leaches a wonderful toasty brioche type of flavor. That’s the toastiness you can sometimes get from a really good Champagne.”

Sparkling wines, including Cava and Prosecco, are not made in Champagne and the second fermentation process is often done in a tank rather than a bottle, Angoff said.

“If you’re looking for a better-quality sparkling wine look for something that says ‘method traditionale,’” she added. “That means it’s made in the way they make Champagne.”

More fruit-bearing French regions

Beaujolais has similarities to burgundy wine but has become more deep and complex of late, Angoff said. A “nouveau,” or new, Beaujolais is very fruit-forward — it usually boasts hints of banana, candy and sometimes even bubble gum — and is released every November following the harvest as it is meant to be consumed when it is still young, she said.

Dore will be on hand to answer questions and pour samples of Rhone wines at the Spectacular. The syrah- and grenache-based wines often boast a nose of thyme, rosemary, raspberries, blackberries and black licorice, he said.

“They’re wines that have sun … when you drive through Rhone Valley you can smell the thyme and rosemary that grows wild into the fields,” Dore said. “It gets right into your car.”






®2014 Hippo Press. site by wedu