Winter Games 2010: Snow, Sabrage and Salmanazars

On top of the immensity of the Olympic Winter Games, it appears the Canadians are planning an after party of equally biblical proportions. Thanks to Andre Saint-Jacques, owner of the Bearfoot Bistro and its extravagant underground wine cellar of more than 20,000 bottles (a perennial winner of the Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence), the Champagne […]

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Empress Josephine’s Wine Cellar

Bordeaux wine lovers may credit the 1855 Exposition Universelle de Paris and Emperor Napoleon III’s “Official Classification” with putting Bordeaux wine on the map. But, it turns out that his grandmother the Empress Josephine, first wife of Napoleon Bonaparte may have ignited French passion for the wine. Prior to Josephine raising the status of Bordeaux […]

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5 Random Facts About Wine

1. The longest recorded Champagne cork flight was 177 feet and 9 inches, 4 feet from level ground at Woodbury Vineyards in New York state, on June 5, 1988. 2. Marilyn Monroe was said to have once taken a bath in 350 bottles of Champagne. Vintage not confirmed. 3. The largest cork tree in the […]

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Storing Wine in Davy Jones Locker

Is the wine cellar passe? Some French wine buffs believe there’s a better place for storing wine, at the bottom of the sea (OMG!). A couple years ago, French winemakers began submerging hundreds of bottles of wine at a depth of 30ft in Saint-Malo Bay off the coast of Normandy. After being “massaged by the […]

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Brits and Bollinger

Bollinger is a major Champagne house in France. They produce several labels of Champagne under the Bollinger name, including the vintage Vieille Vignes Francaises, Grand Annee and R.D. as well as the non-vintage Special Cuvee. Ever a favorite of the British, Bollinger became the official supplier to the British court in 1884, receiving a Royal […]

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Not So Buoyant Bordeaux

There was a time when excess Champagne was dumped into French rivers. As a matter of fact, wine-growers from Bordeaux and Burgundy used to say that the reason Champagne had bubbles was because the wine was no good. This may have been true at one time, but today, Champagne sales are experiencing significant growth. Recent […]

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Rose-Colored Wine-Glasses

Recently, the French court fined Moet and Chandon 30,000 Euros for its “La Nuit est Rose” campaign which shows a bottle of rose Champagne on a black background surrounded by pink petals. The court ruled that the ad created an association between drinking rose Champagne and leading a wonderful life ( a reference to the […]

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Tiny Bubbles… In My Wine…

OK, let’s turn Don Ho off (great New Years Eve party tune by the way). Tiny bubbles may make Don happy, but they make oenophiles pretty giddy too. An old adage about Champagne is, the smaller the bubbles, the finer the wine. The tiniest bubbles are the result of long aging, as well as the […]

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Inflated Bubbly

It usually starts right before Thanksgiving, there’s a huge increase in demand for Champagne, not just in stores but in restaurants and bars. This increase in demand puts incredible pressure on Champagne prices. Avoid the price hike. If in December you’re thirsting for a popular brand like Veuve Clicquot, choose a high-volume, warehouse-style store. Distributors […]

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