Now on the Food Channel
Now on Bonko TV
Episode 1 - The Big friendly Vintner
Norm Hardie was born in South Africa and moved to Toronto when he was 14. He is one of a select few winemakers who has mastered the art of tasting, growing and making wine in both hemispheres, in
six wine regions around the world. Over the years, his winery has established itself as one of Canada’s premier wineries.
Episode 2 - Tuscany In The County
Tony Auciello visited his family's "pezza di Terra" in Italy in 2004 and was saddened to see that instead of the fruit trees and vineyard that were once prominent, there was now only overgrown bush. But a seed was planted in his mind at the tender age of 24. 10 years later we drop by to find out how Tony's vineyard dream has grown into a fantastic reality.
Episode 3 - Home on the Grange
Today we visit the Grange Vineyard to hear about the unique story of a mother/daughter winemaking team. Caroline Granger grew up on the family farm with horses in the stables, then she got into wine and began the vineyard project in 1999. It was a simple plan for 10 acres of vines, but today she has 60 acres and is now building the business with her daughter, Maggie.
Episode 4 - Wine Is Where The Home Is
There's an old saying that goes something like, "Our home is our castle." However, if you take a drive down Wilson Road in the county you'll come across a couple who say, "Our home is our winery!" Rob and Sally Peck are what’s known as "garagistes", meaning they produce small batches of premium wine out of their garage.
Episode 5 - For The Love Of Wine
There is always a party atmosphere at Sandbanks where Catherine Langlois is the winemaker and owner. With wines like "French Kiss" and "Sandbanks Love" it's no secret why! Join me in Prince Edward County as I discover what makes Sandbanks so special.
Episode 6 - The Dream Lives On
Richard Karlo was the Founder and Master Winemaker at Karlo Estates and was referred to as a "Natural Adept" as he had no formal training. If you had asked him where he learned to make wine, his answer would have been, "On the Street." Sherry and Richard were married in the summer of 2014 but unfortunately Richard passed away in November of 2014. This is the story of Sherry Karlo, and how she is filling the giant shoes that Richard left behind to fulfill the legacy of what they were building together.
Dear Dr. Vinny, I've heard brettanomyces referred to as a "spoilage yeast." Does that mean it's dangerous to drink wines with a lot of brett? —Pam, Covington, La. Dear Pam, Brettanomyces is a type of yeast that can sometimes show up in wine and beer, and it can cause some pretty funky aromas (barnyard, leather, sweat) when it runs wild. Brett can develop at practically any stage of wine production—it can be on the grapes themselves, it can be hanging out in a winery, and it can hide in the barrels. And at elevated levels it is definitely a wine flaw. However, some people like a little barnyard funk in their wine and, in small amounts, brett can add complexity. In fact, in the beer world, the development of brettanomyces is even encouraged in some styles, especially sour beers. But you're right that brettanomyces is often referred to as a "spoilage yeast." That isn't because wine that has been tainted by brettanomyces is "spoiled" in the sense that it has gone rotten and unfit for consumption; rather, it is just a reference to the fact that the wine's potential bright fruit flavors and aromas have been "spoiled" by the musty, funky aromas of brett. But it's perfectly safe to drink! —Dr. Vinny
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Can alcohol be removed from wine by using alcohol dehydrogenase? (Wine Spectator)
Dear Dr. Vinny, Can alcohol be removed from wine by using alcohol dehydrogenase? —Elahee, Mauritius Dear Elahee, Alcohol dehydrogenases (ADH) are a group of enzymes that break down alcohol into other compounds that can be removed from the human body. Our bodies create several types of this enzyme in our stomach and liver, and when we take a drink and ethanol enters our body, it encounters ADH, which converts toxic ethanol into acetaldehyde. The bad news is that acetaldehyde is also toxic, but the good news is that it’s quickly converted to acetate and other molecules that can be absorbed rather harmlessly by aldehyde dehydrogenase-2 (ALDH2). Even better, ALDH2 may be associated with some of wine's cardiovascular benefits. Speaking of, if you read up on ALDH2 (and really, who wouldn’t?), you might see that its presence can vary. Some people have a genetic deficiency of the enzyme, meaning that they accumulate acetaldehyde, which can cause a red flush on their face (sometimes referred to as "Asian flush" or "glow"). Women also tend to have less of this enzyme per unit of body mass, which is one of the reasons that recommended alcohol allowances differ by gender. It sounds like you’re asking if you could use ADH outside of our bodies to remove ethanol from wine. If you’re into theoretical chemistry, then … sort of? My chemistry professor friend tells me there is some experimental research out there looking at this process as a tool in the future. But for now there are a couple problems, starting with the fact that you can’t exactly go out and buy the enzyme. Even if you could, the enzyme works at the cellular level, in our body’s mitochondria, and not so well in a wineglass. Finally, there’s another molecule in the equation, a co-enzyme that’s found in living cells with the totally made-up-sounding name of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, which helps break the ethanol down completely. You’d need to add that to the mix as well, and my research indicates that this stuff is really bitter. I’m sorry to say the science isn’t quite there yet. —Dr. Vinny
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What does it mean to say a wine is made in the “New World” style? (Wine Spectator)
Dear Dr. Vinny, What does it mean to say a wine is made in the “New World” style? —Richard, Richmond, U.K. Dear Richard, The terms “Old World” and “New World” have been shorthand to describe Europe/Asia/Africa and everywhere else (respectively) for hundreds of years. It’s relatively new to refer to wine in these terms, but they became useful as the wine world became more globalized. As far as a “style,” New World wines (think California, Australia, South Africa) are typically grown in warmer climates and have become known for their riper, more fruit-forward styles. Old World wines, typically from cooler climates, classically showed off more savory, structured styles. These days, the terms are a bit of a relic. There is much more crossover, and more regions and styles than ever before. There are savory, cool climate wines made in the New World, and some vintages in Europe that show off riper flavors. I don’t really hear the terms used as broadly as they were 20 years ago, and these days you might hear about a Bordeaux made in a New World style, or a Napa Cabernet made in an Old World style. —Dr. Vinny
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What are the similarities between red and white wines? (Wine Spectator)
Dear Dr. Vinny, What are the similarities between red and white wines? —Adekunle, Lagos, Nigeria Dear Adekunle, All wine, by definition, is made from fermented grapes, and that’s what both reds and whites have in common. Well, that and being wet. There are a lot of different types of wine grapes out there: Some are dark red, purple or nearly black in color, with highly pigmented skins, and those make the red wines; and lighter colored "green" grapes make the white wines. But you can take red wine grapes and limit the skin contact and make pink or rosé wines, and you can take white wine grapes and extend the contact with the skins and create those “orange” wines all the cool kids are talking about. Red wines and white wines tend to be made differently. Most typically, when making white wine, the grapes are pressed and just the juice is fermented, while with red wines, the skins are left in with the juice (a process called "maceration"), and sometimes even whole clusters of grapes are left intact during the process. That gives red wine both its darker color, higher level of tannins and fuller body and structure. —Dr. Vinny
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Can an aerator serve the same role as a cork in an open bottle of wine? (Wine Spectator)
Dear Dr. Vinny, Can an aerator serve the same role as a cork in an open bottle of wine? —Dave, Terrell, Texas Dear Dave, I think you’re referring to plastic aerators that also work as pourers. You insert a rubber stopper into the neck of a bottle, and as the wine is poured through the long stem of a pouring spout, you can see it bubbling away, aerating. There are also hand-held aerators, and they work by pouring the wine through it into your glass. For the record, I’m not a huge fan of these products. They claim to provide the “optimal” amount of air to a wine to make them most expressive, but in my experience the ideal amount of air varies from wine to wine. I’m happy simply swirling my glass, or using a decanter if the occasion calls for it. Adding another variable into the equation doesn’t help me. But some people love them. By definition, an aerator serves the opposite function of a cork or any other closure—closures keep oxygen out, aeration exposes the wine to oxygen. Even though these particular aerators have a rubber stopper, they will not seal a bottle of wine and protect it from further exposure to oxygen, which will probably cause the wine to fade after a day or two. I’d recommend putting the cork back in, and storing the wine in the fridge to slow down the oxidation. —Dr. Vinny
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