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How to appreciate your wine

November 29, 2013 Leave a comment

More than 100 years back, Robert Louis Stevenson stated, wine is bottled poetry.

We cannot agree more since like all poetry, wine also must be understood to be enjoyed. It does not matter whether you are a wine expert or just a beginner; it sure feels good to look at the basics of drinking and enjoying wine.

So let us start from the start.

Attributes to consider in wine

Wine is appreciated based on its taste, appearance and smell. The following attributes are looked into to gauge the type and quality of wine:

  1. Alcohol: Without alcohol, wine would not exist. The level of alcohol present in wine depends on a large extent on the place of its manufacture. For example, wine made in colder regions where vineyards struggle to ripen their wine, the sugar levels would be minimal and hence such a wine would only have 7-8% strength. On the other hand, wines made in warmer climates will have the yeasts deciding the level of alcohol content in it but even over here, the alcohol level can seldom reach over 14% due to the yeast cells dying off over 14% alcohol.
  2. Flavors: The flavors in wine come from 3 distinct sources – the grape used, the winemaker and the age of the wine. These are not added to the wine but come about naturally by the means of its production and its age. Wine could contain flavors of fruits, vegetables, flowers, nuts, spices, etc, which add to its taste.
  3. Tannins: Tannins are naturally occurring poly-phenols found fruit skins, seeds and stalks. Usually found in red wines, these could be present in white wines too which have been matured in wooden barrels. The presence of tannins adds complexity, astringency and bitterness to the wine. Tannins coat your mouth and give you a dry feeling. Wines, which have strong tannins, are usually referred to as having ‘mouth puckering tannins’ and those wines which have light on tannins and consequently softer on the palate are referred to as ‘soft rounded tannins’.
  4. Acidity: Acidity balances the taste of the wine and for all wines; it plays an important role in its taste.  Too little, of acidity will make the wine taste flat, dull or even overly sweet while too much of acidity may lead to a wine that is sharp, harsh and undrinkable. Acidity is detected by the sharpness of the wine in the mouth, particularly around the edges of the frontal part of the tongue.  
  5. Sugar: During the fermentation process in wine making, if the major amount of sugar is converted into alcohol then the wine is said to have a low residual sugar. In such a case the wine would not taste sweet and would be called a dry wine. Sometimes even if the wine has a high residual sugar but due to the overpowering presence of alcohol and tannins if it does not taste sweet, it would still be considered a dry wine. If it contains a reasonable amount of residual sugar or sweetness, it is medium dry or off dry. Dessert wines are generally referred to as sweet while red wines are usually dry.
  6. Yeast: Yeasts are single celled microorganisms, which are added to the crushed grapes along with sugar to initiate the process of fermentation. These yeasts are of many different kinds and are themselves the cause of certain flavours. After the fermentation process, the wine remains cloudy and contaminated with dead yeast cells for which different techniques are used to clarify it. These different techniques used also can give a distinct flavor to the wine.
  7. Body: This feature of a wine denotes how the wine feels in your mouth. A light bodied wine has a thin feeling like water. A medium bodied wine is full flavored without being too heavy like milk. A heavy bodied wine has a rich and robust feel in the mouth like cream.
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7-day ‘Wine in Food’ odyssey with Chef Michael Swamy!

November 21, 2013 Leave a comment

Nine Hills Wine and Starwoods Hotel have come together to present…

… A mind blowing 7 days, 7 cities, 7 chefs, ‘Wine in Food’ event presented by the renowned Le Corden Bleu Maestro, Chef Michael Swamy.

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Now get set to learn how to cook with wine and find out all about the yummy dishes you could conjure up with your wine!

Want to attend this exclusive event in your city?

Here is how it is possible!

  1. Stay tuned on the Facebook page of Nine Hills Wine for some exciting contests. These could be as simple as completing a sentence to as fun as showing your love for Nine Hills Wine through photos.
  2. Participate actively
  3. Those from the below mentioned 7 cities can win a couple pass ( 1 couple pass for each city) by hashtagging the name of their city in their contest entries

The schedule of this event is as follows:

Mumbai:  29th Nov – Friday

Pune: 30th Nov – Saturday

Bangalore:  5th Dec – Thursday

Gurgaon:  6th Dec – Friday

Chennai:  7th Dec – Saturday

Dhaka:  8th Dec – Sunday

Hyderabad:  10th Dec – Tuesday

So get ready for some great times with food and wine!

Terms and conditions for the contest:

  • The Contest shall be valid in India only
  • Employees of Nine Hills Wine and their parent and affiliate companies, as well as the immediate family (spouse, parents, siblings and children) and household members of each such employee are not eligible
  •  Nine Hills Wine reserves all rights to use the tips so submitted by the participants in the contest
  • Nine Hills Wine reserves all rights to make change(s) and/ or amendment(s) to the existing Rules, at its sole discretion, without any prior notice
  • The outcome of the selection and/or the decision made by Nine Hills Wine regarding selection shall be final and binding on the Nominee(s) and in no event shall the Nominee(s) dispute the decision made by Nine Hills Wine and/or its employees in connection to the awards and/or otherwise
  • Prizes cannot be exchanged for cash
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Surrender to Your First Crush-The Bandra Wine Tasting Festival

November 12, 2013 Leave a comment

The making of wine has been around for thousands of years, the ancients as early as 200 BC stomped their grapes creating wine in an act of celebrations. Some traditionalists even prefer it to modern methods feeling that with the human intervention of feet (Very Clean ones!) hot spots can be avoided by feeling for and crushing clumps!

Bandra Wine Tasting Festival

Nine Hills Wine Grape Stomping at Bandra Wine tasting Festival

Honouring the traditions of grape stomping also known as pigeage, Nine Hills Wines was the proud sponsor of the Grape Stomping at the 4th Bandra Wine Tasting Festival that saw wine lovers from Mumbai’s favorite suburb and beyond flock to the D’Monte Park Recreation Club (DPRC) on the 9th and 10th of November, 2013.

The two day event was also filled with events catered to tastes of any wine lover included Blind Tastings, Dance Workshops, Tasting Tips from experienced Sommeliers  and food from across the globe specially chosen to titillate the taste buds.

The wine lovers came, they saw and they stomped! And of course they graciously posed  🙂 !

 Check out these snapshots from the event!

The Grapes Await!

 

Though cautious at first several visitors got into the flow of things joyously leaping as they crushed the grapes beneath their feet! They truly enjoyed all the throes of surrendering to their first crush!

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