Wine Lecture With Chef Danielle by Meghan O.

25 06 2008

On June 23rd we sat through a very interesting and fact-filled presentation by Chef Danielle about wine. She set up a power-point presentation for us and went through 10 wines. She started off with white, and then red. She compared wine in many different ways, like showing us two of the same grape varietals from different regions, old world wine vs. new world wine, and even compared two of the same wines from the same region, and we learned the difference the storage vats make. When you are observing white wines, you hold the glass at the stem or the foot to prevent the temperature from your hands warming up the temperature of the wine. You smell for tree fruit first, then stone fruit, then nonfood elements, such as earthy smells. Wine #1 was a Riesling from Columbia Valley, Washington. This wine had scents of pear, green apple, green grape, butter, and crisp mineral, and we learned that because it is grown in a cool climate, the wine will be sweeter. New World wine is less traditional than Old World wine, and this is considered a New World wine. Old World are from European places, and Wine #2 falls under this category. Wine #2 was a Riesling from Alsace, Germany with more pronounced non-fruit characteristics. Looking at it, it looked almost like white gold, and had a platinum shine. We were taught that when a wine has a shiny platinum look, that means that is was heavily clarified. They clarify wine just as we do with consomme, with egg whites. We also learned when looking at the color and visual characteristics, to look at two different parts of the glass, the concentration and the cheeks. The concentration is straight in the middle, the darker, and the cheeks are the sides of the glass, like the cheeks on our face. Also, the younger the white wine is, the more greener of a tone it will have. Wine #3 was a white wine blend of 4 different grape varietals. It is an Old World wine from Rhone Valley, France; with a very heavy finish, and because the grape was grown next to a river, it took on a very mineral taste. Because it was aged in oak, it carries a pastry, buttery smell. There was a high amount of alcohol in this wine high amount of legs on the glass. We were told that with wines like this, that have a heavy finish and strong mouth-feel, to eat with fatty and fried foods, because it will cut through the fat, and create a good balance. Wine #4 is California’s take on Wine #3. This is a New World wine, and is much more fruit-forward. Becuase this wine is straw yellow, and Wine #3 was golden dark yellow, you can immediately asses that this is younger. This wine has scent of orange, banana, and pineapple, and had the taste of burning wood, toast, and campfire. Wine #5 was a Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California that was aged in oak. Because the Chardonnay grape is such a neutral grape, it is easily influenced by the aroma of the oak vessel, and also the dark color. This wine is high in acid, but because it is raised in a hot climate, the sugar overpowers the acid, grows to quickly, and becomes a sweet tasting wine. A huge indicator of wine aged in oak is aromas and tastes of butter, nutty, and pastry objects. Wine #6 was also a Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California. The difference though was that this wine was aged in a stainless steel vat. When wine is aged this way, the steel does not add any flavor or influence the grape, it simply concentrates the flavors that are already there. This wine has aromas of onion and garlic. Odd, yes, but because these grapes are grown next to onion, what is called terware is resulted. It is when an object takes on resemblances of flavors of what it is grown around. Wine #7 was the start of the red wines. It was a Pinot Noir from Oregon. Pinot Noir is the main grape grown in Oregon. It has tastes and smells of cranberry and cherry, with a chalky finish. We were taught that the younger the red wine is, the more brightly red it will be, and opposingly, the older, the more brown it will be. When you have red wine with aromatics of red and blue fruit, you will know it was grown in a cool climate. When it is of black fruit, it was grown in a warm climate. This wine was raised in a cool climate. Wine #8 was a Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France. Burgundy only grows pinot noir and chardonnay grapes, it is what works best with the climate. This wine had an astringent finish, and a smooth beginning, with much higher acidity than #7. It has bakeshop, spice, and cherry smells, and we learned that Pinot Noir is a perfect pairing for lamb and duck. This wine came from the Cote de Beaune region of France. Finally, Wine #9 and #10 were my favorite two comparisons of the night. Wine #9 was a Merlot blended with a little Cabernet Sauvignon, and Wine #10 was a Cabernet Sauvignon blended with a little Merlot. Wine #9 was from Bordeaux, the right side, and was very woodsy, earthy, and smelled of tobacco. It had a dark color and was very heavy in body. Wine #10 was also from Bordeaux, the left side, and had a lighter color, yet heavier body, and was very floral and sweet.

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One response

31 12 2009
Cheryl Chan

hi, i’m from malaysia and i’m searched ur blog on google, actually i’m looking for a wine tester to give wine lecture to us, can i have more detail about Chef Danielle?

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