Global warming is talked about a lot in wine circles, but now that it’s about to affect beer, maybe things will really heat up. Welcome to the grape/barley axis…Read More
A favorite game among wine lovers is trying to trick friends with questions about barrel size - just how big is a puncheon, after all? And how many bottles are in a hogshead? And what is a pipe of Port? Barrels come in dozens of sizes, some fairly standard and other sizes used in in a single region. The traditional hogshead is about 238 liters, but in Cognac a hogshead holds around 215 liters, and in Madeira, a hogshead is even smaller. Whew!
The closest we have to a barrel standard is the "Bordeaux Barrel" or barrique that holds 225 liters, or 300 normal sized bottles of wine. This barrel is almost a meter long, and about 69 cm in diameter, which stands in rather stark contrast to the barrel Gérard Bru of Château Peuch Haut in the Languedoc region of southern France announced this week. He had a local carpenter build him a barrel that is 12 meters long, six meters in diameter and weighs more than 40,000 kilos empty. And it holds 300,000 liters of wine, which is 400,000 bottles. That's a lot of wine.
Bru says he won't fill the barrel though - he wants to make an event space out of it and hold tastings and parties inside it. So now we will have toasted guests who are themselves barrel fermented, after a fashion.
Wines of Chile just named Emiliana the country's Winery of the Year, signaling a broad acceptance of biodynamic and organic farming in the country's wine industry. For us consumers it is a reminder that great red and white wine can still go green, and that there is more to wine that what we can measure in the soil.Read More
In The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, the poet wrote "Drink wine and look at the moon." I've been doing that under the recently full moon, especially since I learned our lunar neighbor might very well affect how my wine tastes. New Age malarky? Perhaps not...Read More
Few wines are as idiosyncratic and storied as Lebanon's Chateau Musar. The story of Musar is a story of determination, inspiration and faith (and no small amount of winemaking expertise). Winemaker Serge Hochar has ushered this wine through 50 vintages and says, "I am here because of war." His story, like his wine, is entrancing, and you will find it here on "Engaging the Senses."Read More