The root of the wine making process
Want something good for the heart? You're thinking love, but how about wine? Wine, mostly red, has been known to be good for the heart. So to learn about different kinds of wine, what you like, and those that may also be helpful to your health why not go to wine tasting? The wine-educating website, www.learnaboutwine.com
, offers intuitive and useful tips on finding a certain kind of wine that suits your palate by means of classes and special events. Every Friday during the summer they host an event called "Wine Tasting Under the Stars" at The Crescent Hotel in Beverly Hills. You go to each wine vendor as they explain the contents in the wines that they have available and you try them, deciphering which one you appeals to you. The Friday, August 20 event showcased wines in the theme of "California Stars" with eight different wineries all around California.
The setting at the hotel was very simple and sweet, with white candles lit everywhere and comfortable lounging areas available while you sip from a glass that you may (or may not like). Between each different glass of wine, delicious hors d'oeuvre, created by The Crescent Hotel Chef were served. LearnAboutWine is a great source of entertainment and education for wine enthusiasts.
My personal preference is red wine. One of the wines that I liked at the event was Cakebread 2001 Merlot, Napa Valley, which is smooth, fruity, ripe, and yet bittersweet. Another wine I enjoyed was Grgich Hills Cellar 2000 Cabernet Sauvignon, which is the only other Cabernet Sauvignon, besides Jerry Garcia's, that I like (I favor Merlot). It has the scent of ripe black fruit, cassis and cedar. Another, which happens to also not be a Merlot, is Renwood 2001 Old Vine Zinfandel, Amador County, which is an ageless, fruity, sweet red, consisting of blackberries, plums, chocolate and spice.
My favorite of the night, again not a Merlot,was Renwood 2001 Barbera, Amador County. It comes from a traditional grape grown in Italy, with a strong sense Merlot. Rising popularity for Barbera began in the 1950's and 1960's, when grapes were planted in California, but large production of different blends began to surface with the likes of Zinfandel, Cabernet, Merlot, etc., which appealed to consumers more. Now, with Barbera making a comeback, in its own genre, people are able to savor the sweet, but strong flavor of the grapes, with a refreshing Chardonnay-like taste first going down, then once on the palate, Merlot elevates to the mind.
The advantage of growing a different Italian vine, such as Barbera in the Sierra Foothills is that a higher degree of ripeness and maturity in the fruit is gained. It brings the acid levels down to a finer balance with the characteristics of other wines.
The 2001 Sierra Series Barbera offers the mouth swelling richness of berries, with chocolate and hints of sweet, spiciness. Finishing with velvety flavors of blueberry and black cherry, the Barbera ends with lasting traces of black currant and vanilla, that are long and drawn out.
One of the wineries included in the event
All of the wines covered at "Wine Tasting Under the Stars" showed intricate information on some of the biggest wineries in all of California. Discovering what you like, and hearing the thoughts of others is a fun way to experience new wines and try something that you normally would not. Learning about different types of wines will inspire you when having parties, cooking dinner, or just relaxing, because you will then know what kind of wine suits you best.
"Wine Tasting Under the Stars" Fridays, 6 - 8:30pm, through Aug. 27
$30 per person
2118 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 462
Santa Monica, CA 90403
Tel (310) 451-7600
Allison Levine at [email protected]
Jennifer Appleman at [email protected]