Wine - Temperature and Taste Issues

You read about a wine that is strongly reviewed and hustle off to your local wine shop to get a bottle. You have some friends over and pop the cork for dinner. Much to your disappointment, the wine is okay but not nearly as good as the review suggested. The issue might be the temperature of the wine.

Wine is not like water. You can drink water at room temperature, ice cold or even a bit warm and still get relief. Warm wine is rarely very tasty. This is because the temperature plays a role in bringing out certain flavors and elements of the vintage. The temperature can also inhibit certain flavors and elements that might be to strong when the wine is at room temperature. Put another way, temperature is a key factor in bringing balance to the wine.


White wine is a classic example. It should be served just a bit cooler than refrigerator temperature in the 43 to 46 degree range. Obviously, that is Fahrenheit as the equivalent in Celsius would be a boiling wine! Regardless, this temperature range provides a perfect balance of the competing elements of the white. What if you serve it below this temperature range? The flavors all become bland and hard to distinguish. Serving the wine at room temperature, in contrast, produces a wine that is very acidic. Generally, it is best to start a white at around 43 degrees. As it warms up slowly in the glass, more flavors will emerge.

What about reds? Well, they say you should serve a red wine at room temperature. This cliché is from an older time and actually is incorrect in most modern environments. A red should be served at a temperature equivalent to the water coming out of your tap. I don't know about where you live, but that is a lot colder than the rooms in my home. To resolve the issue, just put your red in a tub of tap water for a few minutes and the temperature and flavor should balance out nicely.

Wine is very temperature sensitive. While we've covered the general guidelines for whites and reds here, always take the time to find out the optimal temperature for the specific wine you are going to drink. If you don't, you might think an otherwise fine wine has something wrong with it.

Wine - Temperature and Taste Issues

Thomas Ajava writes for Nomad Journals - makers of leather wine journals that make great wine related gifts for any occasion including wine tasting parties.

Wine Tasting Parties: 4 Easy Steps to Hosting a Great Wine Tasting Party

Thomas Jefferson said, “Good wine is a necessity of life for me”. No wonder he was one of our founding fathers!

More and more people are drinking wine these days and why not? It’s readily acknowledged by the medical community that drinking red wine in moderation has a myriad of health benefits including lowering your risk of contracting heart disease, breast cancer, prostate cancer and cataracts. I don’t know about you, but for me, that’s a good enough reason to enjoy a glass or two every night. In addition, it’s a nice way to relax after a rough day and getting together with friends over a glass of wine is a great venue for socializing and having fun.


One way to do this is by hosting a wine tasting party. Besides being a lot of fun, this is an excellent approach for learning about wine and maybe finding a few new wines you really enjoy. Below are some guidelines that will help you organize a wine tasting that’s sure to be a hit.

  1. Inviting your guests- The first thing you need to consider when organizing a wine-tasting party is how many people to invite. Generally speaking, 8 to 12 is considered the optimum number of guests. This size group is large enough to promote spontaneous interaction and small enough to be easily manageable. Whether you telephone, email, or sent written invitations is a personal choice. I happen to prefer sending email invitations. American Greetings has a great card site that includes “eInvites”. It’s a wonderful service where you can send invitations and your guests can simply click a button to RSVP. You can even schedule follow-up reminders. The American greeting site has a .00 yearly membership fee, but for all the ecards and services, I think it’s worth it.
  2. Choosing the wine- In my opinion, choosing the wine to taste at your party is the best part of the planning stage. But then, I happen to get mesmerized every time I walk into a large wine store. There’s so much to choose from. There are many different ways you can handle wine selection. One option is to consider a themed party. For example: “California Chardonnays”, “German Rieslings”, “Wines Under .00”, or “Italian Reds”. The possibilities here are endless, so don’t be afraid to be creative. Another option might be to choose wines from a particular winery or even to select different vintages (years) of the exact same wine. Selecting different vintages of the same wine is called a vertical tasting and this may be more costly to do since older vintages tend to carry a higher price tag. When buying the wine for your party, keep in mind that for tasting purposes, each pour should be about two ounces. This means that for eight people or less, one 750 ml bottle should be enough.
  3. The question of food- No party would be complete without food. However, depending on your goal for the event, you may want to wait until after tasting the wine to serve food because food affects the taste of wine and visa-versa. If your goal is to have an informal gathering of friends and experience new wines with good food, by all means serve food paired with the various wines. In fact, an easy and fun way to have a wine tasting party is to ask your guests to bring the various courses (appetizers, soup, salad, dessert) along with a paired wine while you provide the main course and wine. If your primary goal is tasting and judging new wine, it is more appropriate to wait until after the tasting to serve the food. Instead, during the tasting, provide only unflavored crackers (saltines) or bread to cleanse the palette between wines.
  4. Tasting and rating the wine- Remember to limit your pours to two ounces (visually, two ounces is about two inches in a normal size wine glass). Place pitchers of water out for your guests to rinse their glasses or cleanse the palate between tastings. Also, have buckets available for those who choose to spit out the wine instead of swallowing it. Spitting is not necessarily an indication of not liking the wine. Many wine tasters spit so they will not be affected by alcohol consumption. Especially if the tasting is to be followed by socializing and drinking wine. One suggestion for tasting and rating the wine is to simply hand out paper and pens to each of the guests as they arrive so they are able to make notes on each wine tasted. To make this process more structured and organized, you can download and print wine tasting forms from the internet. Clicking on the following link will take you to Wine-Reviewer where you may download a wine tasting review form. Wine reviews [] You may reduce the chance of ratings being influenced by personal preference or prejudice by having a “blind tasting”. To do this, completely wrap each of the bottles with aluminum foil and label it with a number. The wine will then be identified and judged by the number on the bottle. To make the evening a bit more interesting and educational, research the wine, winery and wine-making region. Your guests will probably find the information interesting and will appreciate your effort.

Using these guidelines, having a wine-tasting party is as easy as 1-2-3-4. Have fun, but please remember to drink responsibly and do not let others drink and drive. If possible, have someone be a designated driver to insure that everyone gets home safely.

Wine Tasting Parties: 4 Easy Steps to Hosting a Great Wine Tasting Party

Marcia Parks is a successful free-lance author,wine-reviewer and web publisher. Her current project involves traveling the United States to visit and review wineries. You may read more of her detailed wine reviews at

A Look At The World Of Vintage Campers

Campers from the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s are considered vintage. They are classics and evoke feelings of a time gone by. Many people choose to purchase a vintage model for the look and quality. Vintage campers typically have wood or aluminum frames and, depending on their condition and the brand of the camper, can be purchased for as little as a few hundred dollars (although these will typically need extensive restoration work). On the other hand, a completely restored vintage camper will easily cost several thousand dollars.

Vintage campers can be found online. Do an Internet search for “vintage campers” and you’ll get lots of hits (a recent search for “vintage campers” on Google returned 912,000 results). There are multiple sites that specialize in selling and restoring these campers. There are also clubs dedicated to the restoration and use of these campers; along with numerous forums dedicated to discussions about vintage campers. People who use these types of trailers do so for a variety of reasons. Some people like the classic look, while some want an economical way to camp in comfort. Others have no desire to use them for practical purposes and simply enjoy the restoration process.


The most popular vintage trailer is the Airstream (and often the most expensive). They started producing these in 1932 out of wood and then changed to the aluminum models that are widely recognizable today. Airstream trailers have always been high quality campers. Airstream campers have been manufactured for 75 years and over half of the Airstreams manufactured are still in use today.

Some other popular vintage camper brands are: Spartan, Alma, Silver Streak, Avion, and Prairie Schooner. Vintage campers can often be towed by smaller vehicles. This is not because they are lighter weight, but because the aerodynamic design and even weight distribution allows it to be pulled with greater ease.

Buying a vintage camper can be a lot fun but you should do plenty of research before deciding on one. Unless you are an experienced buyer, it is best to buy a camper in as good a condition as possible. Run down campers can take a lot of work to restore and can often times be more frustrating than you want. Working with a reputable vintage camper dealer can save you a lot of headaches. They are experts in their field and can give you vital information about the camper you are considering purchasing, such as if original components have been stripped from the camper and how much restoration work you can realistically expect to have to do on the camper.

Before buying a vintage camper, think about why you want it and what it will be used for. This will determine the model and size of the camper you may need. Inspect the interior and exterior to determine the condition. Some wear and tear is expected and dents may be found on the exterior. But, it should still be in relatively good shape. Ask the seller to demonstrate the plumbing and refrigeration to ensure there are no leaks. Check the floors to determine if they are solid or if there may be rotting. Tires should be in adequate condition to at least tow it to where it will be stored during minor repairs. It’s especially important to check the hitch and underbody areas of the camper to ensure they are in good condition.

After purchasing a vintage trailer, be sure to get it fully insured. Owning a classic piece of Americana can be a highly rewarding experience. It can also be a practical way to enjoy retro camping. If you like classic vehicles, this is a great option for spending time on restoration as well as having a great conversation piece to use for vacationing. Just imagine all the attention your restored vintage camper will get at the campground and how much fun you’ll have showing it off.

A Look At The World Of Vintage Campers

Gray Rollins writes for Want to learn more about the world of vintage airstream campers [] and the types of RVs, then be sure to stop by Camping Earth.

What Are the Best Red Wines For Resveratrol Content?

Red wine is a rich source of resveratrol, and contains significantly more resveratrol than white wine. This is because the grape skins are left in with the juice for longer when making red wine, and the skins are where most of the resveratrol is found. The resveratrol content varies considerably from one red wine to another, however. So, what are the best red wines for resveratrol content?

By far the highest resveratrol content (around 40mg/liter) is found in both red and white wines made from the thick-skinned Muscadine grape, which is native to Florida and other parts of the south-eastern United States. Muscadine wine is not widely available outside the US, however.


Other red wines typically contain between 2 and 12.5mg of resveratrol per liter. Of the more popular grape varieties, Pinot Noir produces wines with the highest average resveratrol levels. The Pinot Noir grape tends to thrive in temperate, damp climates which also encourage molds and yeasts that attack vines and other plants. In this humid environment, plants produce increased quantities of resveratrol to defend against oxidization damage from fungal growth and other external pressures. Scientists have discovered that resveratrol has similar antioxidant benefits for the human body.

Pinot Noir from its native Burgundy, France, as well as from Oregon, Washington State or New Zealand generally contains more resveratrol than the equivalent wine from a hotter, dryer area such as California or Australia. Levels will also vary significantly from one vintage to another depending on the temperature and rainfall during the growing period. You don't need to restrict yourself to drinking Pinot Noir, though - other red wines from cool, damp regions of the world are just as likely to offer good levels of resveratrol. The key to picking a red wine that gives you a decent amount of resveratrol is therefore to know a bit of geography.

What Are the Best Red Wines For Resveratrol Content?

Stella Rossa is an independent anti-aging researcher and writer for several websites. For more of her work on resveratrol health benefits, visit her informative resveratrol website:

Vintage Souvenir Scottish Jewellery Range by Exquisite

One of the best known range of jewellery by Exquisite of Solihull was the Souvenir Scottish Jewellery range.

The most popular piece of jewellery in this range were the brooches that were produced over a very long period.


The combination of lucky white heather sprigs and/or purple flower thistles, all tied up with the Exquisite trade mark ribbon or bow was produced in many different styles.

All things Scottish had become very popular by Queen Victoria's passion for her beloved estate Balmoral, and this popularity continued into the twentieth century

Exquisite made gilt jewellery from 1914,and before moving to Solihull in the fifties was already making souvenirs from their premises in Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter. Many of these souvenir brooches were sold in Scotland and were widely available in many small souvenir shops. From the number in Birmingham and other places - I think they were also readily available across the rest of the UK.

So far I have counted at least a dozen different styles of the Scottish brooch. One source confirms that three brooches were registered in 1962. These brooches will have "EXQUISITE" and "REG" with the copy right sign on the back. The design numbers were 905225, 905226 and 905227.

However many of the brooches have "EXQUISITE" signed on the back of the brooch only without a copy right mark
Some have Exquisite in script on a flatter plaque with no copy right sign.
You can also find brooches that are unsigned with a riveted pin fastening - denoting an much earlier date probably pre 1950s.

Early brooches are also different in that the pin is in a gilt or gold metal. Where as the later brooches, the pin is the same colour as the brooch (silver) Also differences in the manufacturing processes can be seen. Earlier brooches were cast on a much flatter plate than later brooches, which have a more rounder and sharper shape to the back

More research is still needed to confirm dating and reg numbers to designs.

The brooches were all hand enamelled and so not only can many different designs be collected but each will have a slight difference in colour. Some of the brooches have amethyst purple coloured faceted glass stones. Again some of these stones are a very pale pink ranging to dark purple in colour

The brooches differ by the way the ribbon is wrapped around them and the number of sprigs of lucky white heather. Brooches are also available in a basket design, which are slightly rarer than the floral bunches.

When I am discussing the Scottish brooch range I am only referring to the ones that are enamelled and have heather or thistles, with or without purple glass stones in silver or gold tone metal.

Exquisite also produced a range of Scottish themed jewellery very similar to "Miracle" jewellery with faux stones such as turquoise and agate which look quite different. These were produced by Exquisite during the late sixties to seventies when the rise in Miracle's popularity started to impact on their sales, and with the cheap imports into the UK of jewellery. Ultimately combined to the demise of their Exquisite range.

Vintage jewellery from Exquisite is easy to collect and very rewarding, as they produced some beautiful and traditional pieces for over 60 years.

Vintage Souvenir Scottish Jewellery Range by Exquisite

Sue Weaver Jewels and Finery

Decorating Your Kitchen With A 1940's Retro Theme

These days kitchen décor comes in all colors, sizes and eras. One fun way to decorate your kitchen is with a bit of 1940's nostalgia. Painted cabinets, glass knobs, and vintage linens combined with new appliances that have a retro look can give you a unique and functional kitchen.

You can get a great 1940's look without spending a bundle and still be able to fill your kitchen with some nice collectibles. Here's some ideas on how you can get a 1940's look in your kitchen.



Some popular colors from this era include jadeite and a red and white theme. You can find plenty of vintage accents to fill your kitchen for either one of these color schemes. Why not start a collection of jadeite that you can display in open cabinets as well as use for dishware? You can jazz the place up with vintage wooden handle gadgets that are painted jadite and cream. If you are going for the red and white theme, there are plenty of red vintage kitchen ware gadgets out there and vintage linens can really perk up the place. Another advantage of the red and white theme is you can also add in a fruit theme on top of it like apples or strawberries.

I would leave the walls a neutral color - white of off white so that it does not detract from all
your great accessories. Linoleum flooring in a checkerboard pattern would be perfect.
Some color coordinated throw rugs can add a bit of color to the floor and pull it all together.


Simple lighting is best. You can buy vintage ceiling lights and wall sconces if you want a
really authentic look. Of course you'll want to make sure you have enough task
lighting so some modern lights will have to be worked in. I suggest you make them as subtle as possible so they don't look out of place.

Window Treatments

Use vintage curtains for your windows. You can buy them with complimentary colors and great patterns.
If you can't find curtains make some out of vintage dish towels or tablecloths - you can buy tablecloths that have stains in 1 area pretty cheaply and then just use the good area for the curtains! If you are going with a red and white 1940's kitchen decorating theme, you might want to pick either cherries or apples as a secondary theme and look for curtains with those fruits in the motif.


Glass knobs will really jazz up your furniture and cabinets and add an authentic vintage look. If you have painted cabinets in either white or cream, try the green glass knobs. Your table and chairs should either be a chrome vintage style dinette (you can buy these new and you can still get vintage ones as well), or a vintage wooden style table with enamel top. If you can't find either of these, you can buy any type table and hide it with a vintage tablecloth.


Accessories for 1940's style kitchens can be found in antique malls as well as bought brand new.
Soften up the room by hanging vintage tablecloths and tea towels around. Chrome appliances go well with this look as do the retro style appliances you can buy brand new these days. And don't forget the vintage
breadbox and canisters - every kitchen had them on the counter and you can choose from chrome
or enamel in cream and green, or red and white to complete your look.

Decorating Your Kitchen With A 1940's Retro Theme

Lee Dobbins is the owner of A Kitchen Decorating Idea where you can get more ideas on how to decorate your kitchen on a budget .

Wine Serving Steps For Restaurant Servers

Why Learn To Serve Wine Properly?

If you have ever bought a bottle of wine in a nice restaurant, you may have noticed that the server does not just pop the cork and pour you a glass, but instead goes through a specific process of opening the bottle, letting the buyer test the wine, then pouring in a specific manner.


This presentation may seem unnecessary, but like many formalities it is based on tradition, and serving wine in the proper manner shows that the restaurant knows what they are doing. Most restaurants want to give their guests the impression that they are very important customers, especially when they are going to pay top dollar for a bottle of wine!

This formal wine presentation adds to the atmosphere of exclusivity of the restaurant, and makes the guest feel important. When you are serving the wine, it shows that you are professional and know your business well.

7 Steps to Serving Wine in a Restaurant

Step 1: Set up wine glasses ahead of time. Make sure there is a glass for everyone who will be drinking wine. Make sure you have the proper glasses for the wine (red, white, or sparkling wines require different glasses). If you are not sure about the glass, go to my website and see my wine glass types page for a guide on which glass should be used with which wine (this is important!).

Step 2: Bring the wine up to the table. Present it to the person who ordered it with the label facing them. Announce the wine to them. For example, say "the 2003 Chateau Latour Pauillac, sir". This is just so the person can verify that you brought them the correct bottle.

Step 3: Hold the bottle in one hand and use your wine key to remove the cork. Try to take out the cork without it making a pop. If it is champagne or sparkling wine, definitely do not pop the cork and shoot it across the room (even though it is fun)!

Step 4: Present the cork to the person who ordered the wine. Some people want to inspect it or sniff it to make sure it has not dried out.

Step 5: Pour a small amount into the glass of the head of the table (the person that ordered the bottle). Let him or her test it out to make sure it is OK.

Step 6: Fill up the glasses of the other guests, ladies first, in a clockwise order. Fill the host's glass last. Only fill the glasses about half full.

Step 7: If there is any wine left in the bottle, leave it on the edge of the table (if it is a red wine) or in a chiller (if it is a white wine). The guests will then refill their own glasses as necessary.

These are the basic 7 steps for serving wine for a server or sommelier. There are other things to consider, including the serving temperature of the wine and whether or not you should aerate it or use a decanter. For more information on these subjects, go to my website.

Wine Serving Steps For Restaurant Servers

Matt from Matt is an expert author on EzineArticles. He has published many articles online and in print about various wine and food topics. View his website for more great wine tips and information.

White Wines - The Most Popular

Wine. Not what you do when you don't get your way. What you drink with a fine meal. Well, maybe not what you drink, depending on your tastes, but what a lot of people drink. Some would say that there is nothing like a fine wine. So the question we're going to try to answer in this article is just what IS a fine wine?

Well, there is basically red wine and white wine. And since it's bad etiquette to mixed them together we're going to concentrate on what are considered the finest white wines in this article.


Naturally there will be experts who will disagree when it comes to what the finest white wines are but the following list is a pretty safe bet with most people.

One of the most popular white wines today is Pinot Grigio. The wine comes from the Northeast region of Veneto and Friuli. The tastes of this wine range from melon to pear and some even offer a subtle tropical or citrus fruit, often there is a honey or smoky flavor component as well. As for color, Pinot Grigio is typically a pale, straw-like yellow with some golden hues thrown in to boot. This wine goes very well with seafood, light pastas and cheese cracker combinations. Since this wine is fairly acidic itself, avoid drinking it with foods that are high in acid concentration, like citrus fruits or tomato-based recipes.

Another very popular white wine is what they call a Chardonnay. There are many types of these wines. These are what they call "low maintenance" wines that adapt well to a variety of climates which means that quite a bit of this wine can be produced, usually in the millions of bottles per year. Because of this you can get a good Chardonnay for around . Some of the more popular Chardonnay wines are Jacob's Creek, which goes great with chicken, veggies or shrimp, Eola Hills which is fine with grilled salmon or smoked tuna, Carmenet, which is wonderful with cheese, Round Hill, which is a great wine to have with pork and poultry and the list goes on and on.

Another very popular white wine is champagne. Yes, champagne is a white wine, just a very fancy one. There is a light taste and fizz to champagne that is unlike any other white wine. There is no denying that nothing tastes quite like champagne. That is why you will find this wine at the fanciest parties and gatherings and of course it is the drink of choice for New Year's Eve. The best champagnes are very expensive. They are derived from a blend of grapes such as Chardonnay, Pinot Noir or Pinot Meunier. Champagne is considered a sparkling wine, due to the bubbles, which are formed during a second fermentation process. This second fermentation takes still wine and seals in the carbon dioxide that is formed when yeast converts sugar into alcohol, making for millions of bubbles with no place to go. The most expensive popular champagne of today is Deutz 1990 Cuvee William Brut at 5 a bottle. So if you're going to drink a lot of champagne prepare a nice budget beforehand.

The above is only the tip of the iceberg of white wines but they are the most popular. In our next article we'll see what red wines have to offer for our tastes.

White Wines - The Most Popular


Michael Russell

Your Independent guide to Wine []


Most Popular Red Wine Types for Your Rack

Wine is produced all over the world from single varietal grape selections to popular varietal blends to please almost every palate, from the novice to the seasoned wine taster. Red wine happens to be the most popular choice the world over.

Barolo and Barbaresco


Derived from the Nebbiolo grape, Barolo wines are typically deep red with a thick and complex flavor that is sometimes flowery, reminiscent of violets and roses. Other flavors are fruit, licorice or oak. Barolo should be enjoyed at 60F and can age for 5-10 years. Barbaresco is a red wine that is more elegant and aromatic, though still powerful. In a way, Barbaresco is the younger brother of Barolo. Both of these red wines are made in the Piedmont region of Italy and pair well with grilled meats.

Beaujolais Nouveau

A very young, light, fruity wine meant to be served chilled, around 55F, with dominant flavors of strawberry and raspberry along with a grapey appeal that is virtually free of tannins. It is grown from the Gamay grape in the Beaujolais region (part of Burgundy) of France. Beaujolais Nouveau is released annually on the third Thursday of November. In food pairing, it goes well with grilled or roasted meats both light and dark, a variety of pastas, salads and cheeses.

Cabernet Franc

Originally from the Bourdeaux and Loire Valley region, Cabernet Franc enjoys the growing climates of California, Washington State, Australia, Chile, Canada, and South Africa. It is a wonderfully fruity wine, having lower tannin levels and a more distinct flavor reminiscent of berry; mainly blueberry, raspberry and at times plum. Cabernet Franc is more subdued and softer than its cousin Cabernet Sauvignon and is sold as a single varietal. However, it is ideal for blending with its cousin Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Cabernet Franc is best served at 59-64F and pairs well with Mediterranean Greek and Middle Eastern dishes as well as poultry and pasta.

Cabernet Sauvignon

Originally from Bordeaux, Cabernet Sauvignon has a tremendous presence in the California wineries where the grape favors the warmer climate, and enjoys the popularity as the most sought after red wine. Cabernets are medium-bodied to full-bodied and characterized by a high tannin content which provides structure and intrigue to the wine and supporting flavors reminiscent of a rich, ripe berry, tobacco and sometimes green pepper. Cabernet Sauvignon is an ideal wine for aging, with 5-10 years being optimal for peak maturation. The longer maturation process allows the wine's flavors to mellow, and makes the Cabernets ideal for blending with other grapes, primarily Merlot to add appealing fruit tones, without sacrificing character. Cabernet Sauvignon is best served at 59-64F, and pairs wonderfully with red meats, lamb, cheeses of strong flavor and dark chocolates.

Cotes du Rhone

Southeastern France's Rhone Valley produces some of that country's best bargain red wines offering good flavor, generally full-bodied with rich but smooth tanins, with plenty of food pairing options. Grenache, Syrah and Viognier are the primary varietals grown in the region. Red and rosé wines are made from Grenache Noir, Syrah, Cinsault, Carignane, Counoise and Mourvèdre grape varieties. With the exception of Northern wines using a majority of Syrah, product must contain a minimum of 40% Grenache to be blended into the Côtes du Rhône. Best served at 59-64F and pairs well with game and other rich meat dishes.


Originating from Bordeaux France, Malbec is generally a grape used for blending. In the sun-drenched climate of Argentina, Malbec has found renewed appreciation and acclaim and has become Argentina's signature grape producing a medium to full-bodied red wine. Malbec wine is reminiscent of ripe fruit flavors of plums and blackberry jam. The tannins are typically a bit tight with an earthy, wood appeal making for a fairly rustic wine that is quickly making a new name for itself with red wine lovers. Malbec is best served at 59-64F and pairs well with tomato-based sauces, Italian fare, red meat, Mexican, Cajun, and Indian dishes.


A soft, medium-bodied red wine with juicy fruit flavors reminiscent of plums, cherries, blueberries and blackberries mixed with black pepper tones. Tannin levels are fairly low. Merlot is a prime wine for consumers just getting into red wines. Merlot originated from the Bordeaux region of France and is often blended with other varietals, such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Blending Merlot with these wines mellows and softens the Cabernets. Merlot wines are very versatile with food pairings and are best served at 55- 60F degrees and enjoyed with poultry, red meat, pork, pastas, and salads.

Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is a lighter flavored and colored red wine with flavors reminiscent of plums, tomatoes, cherries and red berries and, depending on the varietal's growing conditions, an earthy or wood flavor. Pinot Noir is planted in California, Oregon, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Australia, and other regions around the world. You are likely to pay a little more for Pinot Noir because it is produced in smaller quantities than most of the other popular red wine types. Pinot Noir is a versatile food wine best served at 55-60F, pairing well with spicy seasonings, creamy sauces, beef, ham, lamb, pork, poultry and fish.


Italy's most commonly planted red grape varietal predominantly producing the popular wines Chianti and Chianti Classico, wines of medium- to full-body with a tannin structure range from medium-soft to firm, and a medium to high acidity content. Flavors associated with Sangiovese wines are reminiscent of cherry, plum, strawberry, cinnamon and vanilla with a finish that can range from elegant to bitter. Best served at 59-64F, Sangiovese varietal wine pairs well with chicken, red meat, fish, lamb, pork, pastas, stews or well-aged cheeses


Australia and South Africa call it Shiraz. In France, it is known and grown as Syrah, but it happens to be the same grape varietal that produces a deep-purple color and bold, spicy, red, medium- to full-bodied wines with firm tannins with rich flavors reminiscent of black cherry, blackberry, plum, bell pepper, black pepper, clove, licorice, dark chocolate and smoked meat. Best served at 59-64F, Shiraz/Syrah pairs wonderfully with spicy Mexican, Cajun and barbeque dishes, grilled fare, beef stews, red meats, even pizza and meat lasagna.


California's #2 most widely planted red wine grape. Originating in Croatia, not southern Italy as previously thought, where it is a kin to the Primitivo grape . DNA "fingerprinting" recently proved that both Zinfandel and Primitivo are clones of the same grape. California is the largest grower of Zinfandel and produces various styles, ranging from a blackberry and black pepper, to light and juicy-fruity, to rich, elegant, oaked red with medium to high tannin levels and higher alcohol content. "Zin" is frequently blended with other grapes. Best served at 59F, Zinfandel pairs well with grilled red or white meat, fish, lamb, gorgonzola cheese and dark chocolate. Lighter Zinfandels can also pair well with rich, creamy pastas, rotisserie chicken, duck, baked Italian dishes like lasagna, cannelloni and Cajun to Asian fare.

Most Popular Red Wine Types for Your Rack

We created because we passionately want to share with those with an interest the art, science, and physical and psychological aspects of the wine tasting experience. An experience without pretension which both the novice and seasoned wine lover can enjoy and appreciate. Some of the most exquisite wine experiences are made by passionate vintners creating wines with more styles and tastes than ever could be imagined and YourLoveOfWine can take you on a wondrous journey, tracking down some truly exciting wines to bring to your door when you need them. Our mission is to deliver a greater online wine buying value than you will find anywhere through the combination of our outstanding customer service, depth of product offerings, value pricing and commitment to online wine buyers' satisfaction. Including 8 DIFFERENT WINE CLUBS (one for EVERY TASTE and BUDGET), the best of the elite Red and White Wines, Gift Baskets, Glassware, Wine Openers and Charms. See our selection of Quality Wine Racks at

Finding the Right Wedding Hair Style

Your wedding day is one of the most important days in your life and you want to look your absolute best. Finding just the right wedding hair style to compliment your face, your eyes, and your wedding gown - can be one of the most difficult tasks of preparing for your wedding.

How do you decide what is the right wedding hair style for you? How you decide which style is right for you has a lot to do with personal preference. Secondary considerations would be factors such as is your wedding a daytime wedding, or an evening wedding? Will the wedding and reception take place indoors or out? Are you going to be wearing a headpiece, and if so - what kind?


Generally the guidelines are just that - guidelines. Your choice to follow the wedding hair style guidelines depends on the theme you've chosen for your wedding and how formal or casual you want your wedding to be.

Up styles are suitable for all wedding settings. Wearing your hair up lends an appearance of elegance and sophistication. So if you are having a formal, black tie event then an up style might be a good idea and in some circles it might even be demanded.

Even if your wedding is not an ultra elegant affair. Even if you are having a beach wedding with cookie favors instead of wine favors an up style is still appropriate and will still lend a touch of class to your wedding day.

Wearing your hair half up is suitable for both indoor and outdoor weddings; though the style is used most of the time for daytime weddings - it also works very well for night weddings. This choice has become popular because it combines the flattering and softening features of wearing the hair down without giving up too much of the formal advantage of an up style. Check with your fiance. This hair style is often preferred by guys for that very reason.

Wearing the hair down is gaining in popularity, but if you will be outdoors for any amount of time - it might not be such a good idea. It is a beautiful look and compliments many style of headpieces, but its staying power may not be exactly what you will be looking for. This is the easiest wedding hair style to create, but the hardest to keep looking fresh.

Whatever you choose, your style should reflect you and go a long way in complimenting your gown and headpiece. These are just a few things to keep in mind when deciding on a wedding hair style.

Finding the Right Wedding Hair Style

Jeanette Shinn is a wedding professional with over a dozen years experience making dreams come alive. Find more helpful ideas from choosing bridal footwear to ideas for pulling off a fairytale wedding at

Garden Tips On Buying The Best, Cold Hardy Flower Bulbs For Outdoor Planting

Buying flower bulbs to plant and grow is an exciting experience that begins in the fall and continues through the spring. Dutch flowering bulbs are usually delivered to American ports by the month of September for fall planting. Major Dutch bulbs offerings include Dutch Amaryllis and African Amaryllis; daffodil bulbs and the famous, Tulip bulbs.

Amaryllis flower bulbs grow the showiest blooms and are pre-cooled to force fast flowering in 3 weeks after containerizing. Dutch bulb importers of Amaryllis offer a larger variety of selections and more bulbs to tempt the buyers. The African growers of Amaryllis bulbs appear to be enslaved to the Dutch Amaryllis importers distribution network, however, the African flowers that emerge on the Amaryllis stems are superior in many respects to the Dutch Amaryllis. The African Amaryllis blooms appear to offer clearer colors, more compact flower stalks, leaves that grow as the flowers appear, and more numerous flower stalks and grow from smaller bulbs. The large array of bloom colors from amaryllis includes red, pink, lavender, orange, yellow, white, green, maroon, red stripe, white stripe, pink stripe, and bi-color. Double numbers of petals on Amaryllis flowers are fast growing to be very popular choices to buy, since the petal count is increased to 12, instead of 6 that grow on most Amaryllis bulb flower stems, looking very similar to a huge carnation flower.


Daffodil flower bulbs are important Dutch bulbs for fall planting, because of their reasonable market cost, the ease of planting, and the growing of flower stalks in the Spring in various colors of yellow, white, orange, and the rare pink daffodil. Daffodil bulbs are easy to naturalize to bloom again every year.

Tulip bulbs are a native flowering plant of Turkey, but long ago tulips were hybridized on a large commercial scale by Dutch bulb growers. The cost of Dutch tulips has not always been inexpensive to buy, but tulip buyers today still love the spring flower colors of red, pink, orange, yellow, blue, purple, white, and bi-color. Cities and government organizations anxiously buy tulip bulbs in huge numbers during winter seasons to grow in beautiful landscape displays for the Spring.

The Canna lily rhizome has been long considered to be tropical in nature, with very little cold hardy resistance. The early American botanist and explorer, William Bartram, wrote in his book, Travels, in 1773, the discovery of Canna indica in Alabama near Mobile, "Canna indica is surprising in luxuriance, presenting a glorious show, the stem rises six, seven, and nine feet high, terminating upwards with spikes of scarlet flowers." Bartram also discovered the native Canna flaccida, growing near Fort Frederica, Georgia, located on the Island of St Simon's. Canna lily colors are broad, red, white, pink, lavender, orange, yellow, speckled, bi-color and others. Some Canna flower growers plant cannas with variegated leaf forms that are striped with red, green, yellow, white, and pink. Dutch distributors of canna rhizomes still flood retail box store, garden centers with "Victorian-age" canna bulbs of poor quality; varieties that had declined, "run out", 50 years ago, and they should have been discontinued and not presented to buyers at a garden center nursery.

Ginger lily rhizomes grow flowers with fragile, delicate blossoms - many looking like miniature orchid flowers. The foliage of Ginger lilies is interestingly variable, growing in colors of green, yellow, maroon, and stripes of yellow or white. Interest in planting ginger lilies has surged in 20 years, because of the realization that many ginger lilies are cold hardy, surviving temperatures as cold as zero degrees F. The foliage and the flowers are pleasantly aromatic.

Daylilies are actually not bulbs but rhizomes, but are sold extensively as daylily bulbs. Thousands of named varieties of Daylily bulbs have been easily hybridized by legions of backyard gardeners and the selection improvement and flower quality is absolutely astonishing. The improvement has resulted in growing double flower daylily, miniature daylily, cold hardy daylilies, and compact clumping or large clumping daylily plants. It is staggering to realize all these many colors - red, white, yellow, orange, purple, pink, and bi-color originated from an original native plant -a seedy, yellow daylily growing wild on the forest edge.

Crinum Lily bulbs offer to an adventurous hobbiest or gardener an antique garden bulb selection that has been reintroduced as improved crinum clones by the brilliant inductiveness of chemist, Lester Hannibal of Fair Oaks, California. Lester Hannibal back crossed and intercrossed many native crinum lily species to offer the gardener an excellent, cold hardy crinum, an "interspecific hybrid", that can be grown as far North as Philadelphia, PA, zone 6, and to survive intense freezes of below zero temperatures. Many of Lester Hannibal's crinum flower hybrids were a re-creation of obsolete but popular commercial crosses that were made by Cecil Houdyshel in the 1930's, but largely improved upon from the original "Powellii" forms with clear, white and pink colors, an increase in the number of flowers in the umbel, extended flowering periods, an eliminatio of drooping flowers, an intensification of fragrance and early flowering after sprouting from the germination of the seed. The "milk and wine" crinum lilies were named, because the flowers were white (milk) and wine striped colors. Crinum colors are burgundy, red, pink, white, greenish-yellow, and orange. Crinum bulbs increase by growing into clumps of multiple offsets from the central mother bulb, or by planting the seed of some cultivars or species.

-Rare, Hard-To-Find Flower Bulbs of Merit- Many rare minor flower bulbs are unavailable to buy anywhere, except by possibly exchanging plants with collectors and hobbiest. The Amazon lily, Encharist grandiflora, blooms with six white, daffodil like petals, and a green or glowing yellow cup radiating from the center. This delicate flower can be remembered from days past for its wonderful charming fragrance. The Bird of Paradise is known for the two tropical forms, the Strelizia reginae, the most common: brilliantly colored flowers with orange, red, and blue glaring blossoms; and the Strelizia nicholae that grows large, showy, white flowers. The Blood Lily, Scadoxus mutliflorus, forms baby-head sized globular flowers with red filamented petals and radiate fragile threads of red that are affixed to the to the center of the bloom, great for container culture. The Red Butterfly lily, Odontonema strictum, won the perennial plant award of the year in Florida in the year 2000, and butterflies and hummingbirds flock to visit the fiery red spikes, beginning in mid-August and continuing until the first hard freeze. The Calla lily, Calla palustrus, has been hybridized with many other Calla lily species to grow into many splendid colors, but the new hybrids are not as popular as the white, fragrant, winter-blooming, Calla aethiopica; and the yellow calla, Calla aethiopica. Clivia lilies, Clivia minata, are choice heavy shade-requiring plants that produce gigantic clusters of orange flowers, cup shaped, with a yellow throat, and often will re-bloom two or three times from large bulbs.

The Gloriosa lilies, Gloriosa rothschildiana, a climbing vine that clothes itself with recurved, star-like flowers that are favored and admired by florists and flower arrangers, because the blooms last so well. The Inca Lily, Alstomeria aurantiaca, has become naturalized in America, as an escaped bulb from the tropical jungles of Peru. The Alstromeria flowers last well as a cut-flower, and waxy, greenish-red funnels begin blooming vigorously in the spring. Lycoris are a charming group of flower bulbs that called "Spider Lily", and they bloom in floral colors of pink, yellow, white, and red, Lycoris radiata, which is the most widely grown. The Pineapple Lily, Eucomis bicolor, grows into flowers that are shaped like miniature pineapple fruits in colors of white and rusty-red. Scilla flower bulbs are grown in large numbers as bedding plants, many Dutch varieties are small and make good cut flowers, but the best cold hardy Scilla is the Scilla peruviana that forms and grows into glowing, purplish-blue flowers that either grow as well as bedding plants, or containerized plants. Voodoo lilies, Amorphophallus bulbifer, are strange and bazaar leafy bulbous plants, both in leaf and flower, with a suggestive look of snakes, cobras, and other vermin that may be lurking beneath the leopard-spotted menacing leaves. Zephyranthes are called "rain lilies", and softly bloom in colors of pink, Zephyranthes grandiflora; yellow, Zephyranthes citrina; white, Zephyranthes atamasco; and a mind-numbing number of Zephyranthes bulb mongrels that are distributed by a retired breeder in San Antonio, Texas, who apparently has nothing better to do, than paralyze all the worlds earnest taxonomists into the task of assembling the records of his Mexican-American bulb-children lineage into a staggering Encyclopedia publication.

Garden Tips On Buying The Best, Cold Hardy Flower Bulbs For Outdoor Planting

Learn more about various plants, or purchase ones mentioned in this article by visiting the author's website: TyTy Nursery

Making it Special With Cushion Cut Wedding Rings

One's wedding day is definitely special. This is a fact that no one can deny. It is a day to unite two individuals together in love for the rest of their lives. There is no better way to do this than with cushion cut wedding rings.

Getting married is something that entails a lot of good emotions. There is excitement in the new life to share with someone who is special and dear, happiness in being able to spend every minute of one's life and a little worry about what the future brings for both individuals.


Amidst the myriad of emotions lie the different concerns regarding the wedding ceremony itself. One of the biggest issues to decide on is the wedding ring to use. There is actually a large pool of selections when it comes to wedding bands. They come in different sizes, different gemstones in different cuts and different settings. This can prove to be hard to choose from.

Knowing about the different settings for the stones can help a lot in determining the wedding ring to suit the couple's choice. There are actually difference choices to choose from.

One of the varied options available is in the form of cushion cut wedding rings. This term is based on the overall appearance of the gemstone which basically resembles that of a stuffed cushion. The stone is usually in square or rectangular shape but with rounded edges. It is cut in such a way that the end product comes with a puffy effect. This is the perfect vintage ring design.

Cushion cuts were one of the most famous designs in the late 1800s to early 1900s. They go well with brightly colored gems to create that boldness that signifies the said era. This style has been revived in the modern time, and fashion enthusiasts are scourging the antique shops.

It is definitely easy to stand out in a crowd with cushion cuts. They add a romantic and unique touch to the jewel and can be highly attractive in any settings. However, cushion cuts end up with lesser facets than others. Finding a cushion cut ring can be a little hard. It works better if one looks up for a loose diamond that can simply be attached to the band.

Going uniquely stylish during the ceremony can be pretty easy with cushion cut wedding rings. Their brilliance and natural beauty are going to be an effective reminder of one's promise of love before the altar of God.

Making it Special With Cushion Cut Wedding Rings

Paul Easton is working with Daniel Joines the owner of Polished Diamonds. For High Quality 3 Stone Diamond Ring Design at 1/2 retail shop available at: - The Diamond Ring Specialist

How To Have A Healthy Day

You can have a healthy day all day long by making good choices about diet, exercise and activities through out the day. The following plan is part of my healthy lifestyle which I try to follow as often as possible. Keep in mind I am retired and can adjust my daily schedule anyway I please. You may have to fit in work! Yikes, what a thought! More...

7:00 AM... Begin your day with a few stretches or exercises when you climb out of bed. This puts oxygen into your muscles and gives you energy to start your morning. Stretches and exercise in the morning gets your metabolism going.


8:00AM... Have a heart healthy breakfast of oatmeal,nuts and an apple. "An apple a day away keeps the doctor away". Apples are low in calories and increase your longevity. Top it off with a cup of green tea to boost your bodies defenses against toxins. Toxins can contribute to heart attack, stroke and many other illnesses. Don't skip breakfast it revs up your motor for the entire day. Remember to take your vitamins and or supplements before starting your day. You can brighten your mood with happy colors when you get dressed. Yellow is a happy color, red is for energy.

9:00AM... Take a walk, run or ride your bike for an hour. I ride my bike to the gym for a great warm up before hitting the treadmill. A little sunlight provides the vitamin D needed to slow down the process of aging. Be sure to protect your skin and wear sunscreen to keep those wrinkles and skin cancer at bay. Drink plenty of water all day. Fill your water bottle and carry it with you.

10:00AM... I hit the gym about 3 times a week for a good hour or 2 hour workout. On the off days and weather permitting I will ride my bike for an hour. Be sure to take lots of water with you to hydrate your system.

11:30AM... Take time to refresh yourself in a nice warm shower after your workout. What is really invigorating is to run a little cold water over your body right at the end of your shower to stimulate your body and mood.

12:30... Be sure to eat a healthy lunch and drink a glass of iced tea or water. I love a good salad. There is lots of vitamin K in lettuce and spinach. Vitamin K helps boost the elasticity in the skin. Another great antiaging remedy. Add a some chicken to your salad for protein to build muscle and help you stay alert.

1:00-3:00...This is a good time to run errands, clean house or just read. Reading is my favorite past time and a great way to keep the mind alert and healthy. Give your brain a boost and master something new. Do a puzzle or play a game. Journal writing is also great for your mind and spirit.

3:00PM... You should always have a snack, maybe 2 during the day, so your body does not store up fat. The body will do that if you wait too long between meals or skip a meal. Nibble lightly but do have a snack. A handful of nuts, a piece of fruit or a small piece of dark chocolate are great choices. An orange has vitamin C, fights wrinkles, helps defy age related dry skin and is only 70 calories. Strawberries, kiwi papaya and cantaloupe also contain vitamin C.

3 :30PM...In the summer I like to spend this time outdoors, in the pool, on the patio, or working around the yard. Unwind, bond with a friend or play with your pet. This will decrease depression and boost your immune system.

6:30-7:30PM...Dinner is around this time, I try not to eat any later than 7:30 to be sure I have digested my dinner well enough to ensure a good nights sleep. It is important to keep the immune system healthy with lots of omega 3's that regulate your metabolism, reduce inflammation and balance your blood sugar. Fish, salmon especially, and vegetables like broccoli are favorites of mine both have omega 3's. A cup of herb tea or a nice glass of wine makes dinner special.

7:30PM...This is a good time to relax and enjoy the evening. Watching TV, listening to music, working on the computer or curling up with a good book are some of my favorite things to do. When it is warm weather just sitting on the patio or taking a short walk is most pleasant. All of these activities reduce stress and prepare you for pleasant dreams.

11:00PM...Early to bed and early to rise makes a man (or woman) healthy, wealthy and wise. An old proverb, but true, especially the healthy part. I'm not so sure on the wealthy! Go to sleep at the same time each night with something pleasant on your mind. This will help you get a good nights sleep so you can wake up refreshed and ready to start another healthy day!

Taking care of yourself physically, mentally and spiritually will help you maintain your youth and add years to your life. Plan one perfect healthy day that includes good nutrition, exercise and a way to relieve stress. One will lead to two or three and soon all your days will be healthy ones.

How To Have A Healthy Day

Chuck Marone and Gayle Larson are both retired senior citizens who are passionate about sharing with others tips on staying youthful, anti-aging, as well as health, fitness and good nutrition for their age group.


How To Make Homemade Wine With Simple Household Utensils

To make homemade wines with the recipes and ingredients here
all one needs is a gallon-size glass bottle, a saucepan and
a polyethylene pail. Make certain to use polyethylene as
some plastics are not suitable. Do not use aluminum, copper,
or enamel vessels to make your homemade wine with.

Sterilization is mandatory for all utensils, bottles and
corks, especially corks. One should use commercialy
available plastic corks until you know how to properly
sterilize natural corks.


Ordinarily, baker's yeast and white granulated sugar are
used by the average homemade wine maker. A special wine
yeast and invert sugar makes the best wine possible.

Wine yeast is capable of producing eighteen per cent of
alcohol by volume (32 proof), against the fourteen per cent
of bakers' yeast.

Starting what is called a 'nucleus ferment'or nutrient. A
small jar will do for this. About a 1/2 cup of water
and a teaspoonful of sugar are boiled together for a minute
and then allowed to cool. This is then put into a
sterilized jar and the yeast added in whatever form it is
obtained. Allow to set for 3 days covered with plastic wrap
and rubberband.

Preparing the fruit: Various types of wild yeast and
bacteria are on the fruit naturally and must be dealt with.
Our method, known as the 'sulphiting' method, does
this. For more detailed information on "sulphiting" go to

How to make homemade wine:

Crush the fruit by hand in the poly pail and pour on one
quart of distilled water. Mix well. Crush one campden tablet
and dissolve the power in 1/2 cup of warm water and
mix with pulp. Leave the mixture for 1 or 2 hours. A little
discoloring may happen. After this, take 1/3 of the sugar
to be used and boil this for 1 minute in 3 pints of
water. Allow this syrup to cool and then stir into the
pulp. Then add the yeast (or nutrient) and ferment for 7

After 7 days, strain the pulp through fine cloth and wring
out as dry as you can. Put the strained homemade wine into a
gallon jar and discard pulp. Then boil another 1/3
of the sugar in one pint of water for 1 minute and when
cooled add it to the rest. Plug the neck of the jar with
cotton wool or fit a fermentation lock and continue to
ferment the homemade wine in a warm place for a further 10

At this stage, pour the homemade wine into the poly pail
leaving as much deposit in the jar as you can. Clean
out the jar, sterilize it and return the homemade wine to
this. Boil the remaining 1/3 of the sugar for 1 minute
in 1 pint of water. When this has cooled, add it to the
rest. Refit the lock or plug the neck of the jar with
fresh cotton wool.

After this, the homemade wine should be left in a warm place
until all fermentation has ceased.

Clearing: it is usual to have a brilliantly clear homemade
wine a month before fermentation has ceased so
patience is required here. After all fermentation has
ceased, siphon the clear homemade wine (if not yet crystal
clear) into another jar leaving the deposit behind. Then
when the homemade wine is finally crystal clear it should
be siphoned into bottles and corked.

To get the maximum alcohol and to get total fermentation the
ideal temperature at which to keep a 'must' is
between 65-70 degrees F.

Fully ripe fruit is essential if we hope to make the best
homemade wine.

CHERRY WINE (A Delightful Sweet Wine):

8lb. black cherries, 7pts. water, 3 1/2lb. sugar (or 4lb.
invert), all-purpose wine yeast or Bordeaux yeast, nutrient.

PLUM WINE (Port Style):

Dark red, fully ripe fruits must be used. 10lb. plums,
7pts. water, 3 1/2lb. sugar (or 4lb. invert), port yeast,


Homemade grape wine is much more difficult and requires 20
pounds of grapes so unless you own a vineyard it is
not cost effective to make homemade grape wine.

After several batches you will get the rhythm of making
homemade wine down to a tee. With further knowledge you
will be able to make homemade wines with a strength,
clarity, flavour and bouquet of which you will be justly proud.

How To Make Homemade Wine With Simple Household Utensils

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