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Archive for the Drink Category

Vitalie Taittinger on the Art of Her Family’s Champagne- Jan 27

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Sometimes, if your name is on a product, you’ll do anything to make sure you own it. That’s certainly the case with Champagne Taittinger, the venerable producer of one of the world’s most sought after sparkling wines who famously in 2005 lost their interest in the family winery only to buy it back in 2007 after much resulting debate within the Champagne community (and wine-drinking public) over what parameters constitute the foundation for making Champagne what it is. Yet, for all the news that story generated, it’s the wine and family behind it that is what keeps Taittinger on the […]

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A G’Day To Frankland Estate’s Hunter Smith in Western Australia

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When your wine is called Isolation Ridge, it’s a pretty sure bet that getting to where its made will probably include a lot of driving, and not necessarily on major roads. Of course, once one leaves the relatively few major cities on the world’s smallest Continent, that can be said for much of Australia. That said, driving to Frankland Estate, situated in a remote region of Western Australia about 250 miles Southeast out of Perth, one gets the feeling that reaching it may never happen (helicopter, please!). But it’s the wines that keep you driving, as Frankland Estate, founded in […]

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The Katz Out of the Bag About NY Distilling- Jan 20

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As the revival of cocktail culture has seen its bloom blossom over the last decade, and more and more people have hopped on the bandwagon to learn about, and make cocktails, one of the people they have turned to to help educate themselves has been Southern Wine and Spirits of New York Director of Spirits Education and Mixology Allen Katz. A longtime member of the cocktail community and one of the industry’s great speakers, Katz has been at the forefront of making sure the industry has gotten its methods and spirits right. Yet, somewhere along the way, Katz decided he […]

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Marathon Woman: Banfi Vintners’ Cristina Mariani-May

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Over the years, the name Banfi has become one of the top names when talking about Italian wines. Yet, Banfi Vintners, founded in 1919 by John Mariani, and now run by third generation family members Cristina Mariani-May and her cousin James, is actually an American company, started right in New York City. So how did a little NY importing company that had the misfortune of starting a wine importing business a year before Prohibition (it survived, of course) grow to become one of the true icons in the world of wine? Well, somewhere in the second half of the last […]

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Southern Y’All-Tide Greetings with Virginia Willis- Dec. 23

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Count on one hand the ambassadors of Southern Cuisine, and Award-winning writer, chef, TV personality, and cookbook author Virginia Willis will invariably own one of those five fingers. Georgia-born and French-trained, Virginia has been the go-to expert for such chefs and lifestyle experts as Bobby Flay, Paula Deen, and Martha Stewart, and has appeared on numerous TV shows such as Food Network’s Chopped, Fox & Friends, and NBC’s The Today Show. She’s also cooked with culinary world Grand Dames Julia Child and Nathalie Dupree (who gave Virginia her first job). She’s cooked for President Bill Clinton and, who knows, maybe she’ll cook […]

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Toddy Tales

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When the cold or flu hits me (as it did last October), I crave a warm Toddy. By definition a Toddy is a hot drink of  whiskey, sugar and water. But in the right hands, it is much more. It’s hot magic in a glass. According to cocktail historian and author, Dave Wondrich, the Toddy originated in 18th century Scotland. You can read more in this article he wrote in Saveur magazine entitled “Thank God for Toddies!” Thank God, indeed! Drinking a Toddy when you feel like hell can be a heavenly thing. The whiskey opens the sinuses; the warm liquid soothes the […]

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A Beer That Is Good for What Ales You

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Remember that college mantra  “beer makes you smarter?” Memory hint: it was usually uttered by someone with beer goggles on. We did a little research asking if drinking beer made you smarter. A 2012 study at Oregon State University reported that xanthohumol in hops, a main ingredient in beer, has been found to increase brain function in high doses. Here’s the catch: “High doses” equals about 3,520 pints or 2,000 litres of beer. And, the study was conducted on “young animals” and not “young men.” Maybe the folks in Oregon should stick to studying coffee. You can read this article on the subject Here’s a […]

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The Voice in the Wine World

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Long before there were any “women and wine” organizations or symposiums and back when the wine trade was a man’s world there was one woman whose voice stood out: Roberta Morrell. You can’t miss that voice. Roberta is a force to be reckoned with whose tenure in the wine industry spans 30 years as President and CEO of New York’s venerable wine retailer, Morrell & Company. The daughter of founders Sam and Charlotte who started with a small Manhattan liquor store in 1947, Roberta grew up in the business and later helped that business grow in leaps and bounds.  After college she married and […]

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It’s Time To Add Bolivia To Your Culinary Travel Bucket List- A Visit with Chef Kamilla Seidler

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One of the most fascinating places I have ever visited in South America is Bolivia. Albeit my trip was too short and too focused on recovering lost luggage when I visited many years ago with the intent on hiking. But the images still remain in my mind, and I am eager to revisit and linger longer. I remember taking a boat ride on Lake Titicaca on Christmas Day. I remember the other-worldly Valley of the Moon. I remember the fragrant markets and the women wearing colorful clothes and bowler hats. Yes, I remember the stunning visuals of this landlocked country located deep […]

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Wine Up Wednesday at The Connected Table LIVE Nov 25 with Beaujolais Vintner Caroline von Klitzing and Educator/Entrepreneur Josh Wesson

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We’re hosting our third Thanksgiving at Camp David here in the Hudson Valley. Last week Nathalie Dupree shared her time-tested tips for entertaining a group. 1. Take control and have specific seating times and limited “drinks time” 2. Stay organized with a flow chart 3. Two smaller roasted -not brined- turkeys in the oven are better than big one. Here’s the link to last week’s show  with Nathalie  which also featured Hervé Deschamps Chef de Cave and Cellarmaster for Champagne Perrier-Jouët who is only one of seven to hold this position in the company’s 200+ year old history. Melanie attended Citymeals-on-Wheels 29th Annual Power Lunch for Women at The Plaza Hotel November […]

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