Sparkling White Sangria and Mouthwatering Dishes to Love
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
3d ago
‘Tis the season to dig out the punch bowl or your favorite vintage pitcher and mix a generous batch of Sparkling White Sangria. Why? This cool, refreshing drink is not only beautiful to gaze upon (colors everywhere!), but it’s a brilliant crowd pleaser on any warm afternoon while relaxing outside. With a bevy of fresh fruit, orange juice, white wine on the sweeter side and a dry sparkling wine chilled to perfection, Sangria offers bright acidity, citrus notes, and a hint of sweet on the palate. And what’s not to love about the bubbles? This easy to make beverage is a worthy complement to a ra ..read more
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At Cadgal in Piemonte, Moscato Unveils Its Updated Identity
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
1w ago
After visiting Piemonte a few years ago and understanding more about the Moscato Bianco grape and its varied styles, it was a pleasure to learn about a unique project at Cadgal, tucked in the breathtaking hills of Monferrato and the Langhe. The priority at the winery is to “redefine the identity boundaries of Moscato d’Asti” by emphasizing its complexity and uncanny ability to age. The location offers wines from Cadgal a distinct profile that is already causing a buzz in Piemonte and the international wine scene. To discover more about the new endeavor, I attended a virtual tasting with a han ..read more
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Savor Food and Wine Pairings with the Crush On This Crew
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
1w ago
Some of my favorite episodes of Crush On This are those that highlight food and wine pairings. When Allison and I develop the themes, we do our best to focus on intriguing wines with some of our favorite dishes that are hopefully yours, too. Most of the time, we’re hustling about in the kitchen prepping and cooking, but for the Burger and Wine Pairing episode, we purchased the burger at a local burger shop in our respective cities. Then again, in the Italian Wine and Cheese Tasting, we received the cheeses as samples. There’s never a dull moment and we always have fun! Please enjoy the followi ..read more
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A Compelling Wine from an Intriguing Region, Tannat is the Signature Grape of Uruguay
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
2w ago
If you’re reading this, you appreciate wine. But how many of us are familiar with Tannat, the flagship grape of Uruguay? When I began diving deep into all-things-wine many years ago, Tannat was a red varietal of which I wasn’t familiar. But now? After many many tastings of Tannat, whether in a blend or flying solo, I’m a huge fan. What is Tannat? High tannins are a prominent characteristic of the thick-skinned Tannat. It’s often blended with Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc to soften its bold palate profile. Other elements may include raspberry aromas, higher alcohol levels, a full body ..read more
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An Invitation: Let’s Discover Spain In Luxury – March 2025
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
3w ago
Let’s travel to Spain together in March 2025! From March 17-25, 2025, our group of 16 travelers will indulge in luxury during a most memorable experience exploring hidden and not-so-hidden gems in Barcelona, the Priorat region, and Costa Brava. Having traveled several times to this iconic country, it was an easy decision to help plan this decadent trip featuring stunning hotels (breathtaking views and relaxing spas, anyone?) and premium experiences highlighting regional art, music, architecture, history, food and of course, wine. Join me as we Discover Spain: A Grape Experiences Adventure. Cli ..read more
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A Quick Journey Through Victoria, Australia’s Diverse Wine Region
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
1M ago
One country that has always intrigued me is Australia. From what I’ve heard, stunning natural environments including mountains and coastlines, a lauded culture of culinary delights, welcoming people in country towns and vibrant city life are enticing. And the wines that I’ve tasted through the years have been quite good; many have been those I’ve purchased again and again. When I was invited to participate in a virtual learning and tasting experience (wines were sent as samples) with Kim Chalmers from Chalmers Wines, Matt Fowles of Fowles Wine, Brenden Hawker from Yering Station and moderator ..read more
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Dinner Tonight: Roasted Salmon with Béarnaise Sauce and 2021 Bouchaine Estate Chardonnay
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
1M ago
Are you wondering what to make for this evening’s dinner (that’s actually creative)? How many times have you opened the fridge or pantry doors and promptly announced that it will be take-out sushi night? To be honest, the mealtime conundrum is almost a daily occurrence in my world. A few days ago, I decided to revisit a classic dish, roasted salmon, that I have on a weekly rotation. To switch up the usual recipe, though, I made a surprisingly simple and tasty béarnaise sauce to spoon over the cooked salmon. Just wow! The sauce, with tarragon, vinegar and shallots blended with rich, creamy butt ..read more
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Albariño and Tannat Take the Stage at Alternative Tastes Wine Fest: A Celebration of Unique Varieties
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
1M ago
Officially announced is Alternative Tastes Wine Fest: A Celebration of Unique Varieties to be held in Paso Robles, California on Friday, June 7 and Saturday, June 8, 2024. During the two day extravaganza, Albariño and Tannat, two trending varietals on the Central Coast, are the stars. This festival was founded in response to popular  Albariño and Tannat special interest group tastings hosted by Damian Grindley, Owner/Winemaker at Brecon Estate. “Folks just love these focused wine tastings. Nowhere else can you deep dive into the next potential big thing,” stated Grindley, the festival’s C ..read more
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A Conversation with Angelina Mondavi
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
1M ago
News articles about yet another sale of a family winery to a large corporate conglomerate are published on a regular basis. Likewise, almost daily, an article or social media conversation revolves around the future of wine as it pertains to younger consumers. When I had the chance to chat with Angelina Mondavi (yes, that Mondavi), I felt compelled to address both topics to hear her thoughts. Angelina Mondavi – Photo Credit: CK Mondavi Angelina Mondavi, Fourth Generation Member of the Mondavi Family Everyone has heard the name Mondavi at this point. In 1943, Cesare and Rosa Mondavi purchased ..read more
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Bezel Wines, Cakebread Cellars’ Sister Brand, Showcases California’s Central Coast Charisma
Grape Experiences
by Cindy Rynning
1M ago
Who has not heard of or tasted wines from Napa Valleys’ Cakebread Cellars founded in 1972 by Dolores and Jack Cakebread?  Its storied history and exceptional wines not only reflect the character of the founders but the quality of their estate vineyards from Carneros to Mendocino County. Now, this historic winery is revamping its classic image with a new winemaker, Niki Williams, who pledges to maintain Cakebread’s signature style while putting her own stamp on the wines. But there’s more. Cakebread Cellars has also launched it sister brand, Bezel Wines with the intention to introduce Cake ..read more
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