Red Wine

  • Blogs

    June 12, 2014

    Chilean Winemaker Delivers Surprising, Refreshing Food-Friendliness

    "When I was younger," said Chilean winemaker Felipe Tosso last night at an intimate tasting of his wines at Churrascos, "I made big and bold, intense, tannic wines. But now that I'm older [in his early 40s] and now that I'm a father and more mellow, I make more food-friendly wines. I want to have fu ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 8, 2014

    Navigating Chianti with the Houston Press Tasting Panel

    Just say the word Chianti and you evoke winding roads lined with cypress trees and old limestone farm houses in what is perhaps Italy's most photographed and photogenic region, Tuscany. Whether its mentions in pop culture (who can forget Hannibal Lecter's infamous pairing?) to the straw-flasked bot ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 14, 2014

    Upcoming Events: Haute Wheels Food Truck Festival Returns & Saint Arnold Takes Over Dry Creek Cafe

    In honor of National Ravioli Day, D'Amico's Italian Market in Rice Village will celebrate all things ravioli for an entire week. Beginning on Monday, March 17, D'Amico's will offer special ravioli dishes featuring a variety of fillings, including fresh salmon ravioli smothered in a delicate cream sa ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 10, 2013

    Killen's Barbecue Pop Up and Syrahvolution at Paulie's and Camerata Wows the Crowds

    Houstonians must be doing something right, as the barbecue gods have been really generous to our city as of late. A couple of weeks ago, Q for a Cause brought Austin-based barbecue legend John Mueller, his pits, his food, and his team to Cottonwood. This past weekend, Killen's Barbecue was served in ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 26, 2013

    Thanksgiving Vino, Part 2: Sommeliers Sean Beck and Vanessa Treviño-Boyd Guide You

    It can be complicated and difficult to properly pair wines with the Thanksgiving dinner. You have so many different types of dishes -- spicy, sweet, savory -- and with so many different types of wines to choose from, which ones should make it to the Thanksgiving table? We spoke with two of Houston' ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 3, 2013

    A Story of Love: Silver Oak Wines at The Houston Cellar Classic

    The great thing about wine is that it can be an endless source of conversation. You can talk about everything from the nose, to the feel on the palate, to how it pairs with food. You can debate how it should be made, whether it should be aged in oak, which varieties of grapes blend well together, wh ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 3, 2013

    Wine for Jews: Just Because It's Kosher Doesn't Mean It Has to Be Bad

    It's that time a year again: Like their brethren across the nation, Jewish Houstonians will make their way to their local supermarkets for last-minute kosher wine shopping. And like most Jewish Americans, they will find themselves ill-prepared in selecting the wines, partly because for most of them ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 25, 2013

    France Makes Coke-Flavored Wine; Americans Laugh and Start Planning Other Wine/Soda Combos

    When I first read it on NPR's food blog, I thought I'd somehow started reading The Onion without realizing it. I glanced up at the header at the top of the page. Still NPR. Oh God, it must be true... It seems it is true and also sad and funny and terribly confusing. French vintner Haussmann Famille ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 4, 2013

    Do You Know Your VinoType?

    How many of you actually really enjoy a glass of White Zinfandel or Moscato, but are afraid to tell your friends in fear of being judged for having a "beginner's taste" in wine? Probably a lot of you (including myself). Wine & Food Week 2013 began on Monday night with the Wine Wizard Kick-Off Even ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 31, 2013

    Sommelier Sean Beck Always Stumps Me at Backstreet Café

    "Anything but Italian!" I exclaim as I find a seat at the bar at Backstreet Café, where Sean Beck curates one of the best by-the-glass wine programs in Houston. I have nothing against Italian wines. In fact, I'm a big fan of Sean's Italian selections. But because Italian wines are my main vinous ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 11, 2013

    Big California Wine Crushes a Houston Import from Italy: Sutter Home Forces Trinchero Family to Remove Its Own Name from Labels

    La reproduction interdite... When a colleague showed me the new label for Trinchero Barbera d'Asti Superiore (2006 vintage) last night, I thought to myself, either he is playing a practical joke on me or this is a work of surrealist art. As if plucked from a painting by Magritte or a fountain by D ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 5, 2012

    Finally, A Malbec That I Can (Afford To) Drink

    "No, if anyone orders Merlot, I'm leaving," says Miles in what is perhaps the most memorable line from the 2004 film Sideways. "I am not drinking any fucking Merlot!" I, too, have my issues with "Merlot" (especially when uttered between air quotes). But if there were one wine category where Kantian ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 24, 2012

    A Taste of Texas Wines at Sullivan's

    Last week, Sullivan's Steakhouse played host to Messina Hof founders Paul and Merrill Bonarrigo for a wine dinner showcasing the Texas-based winery's award-winning wines. I was invited to attend, not only to reacquaint myself with the Messina Hof's wines, but also to sample the specialty menu create ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 1, 2012

    What Wine Didn't Romney Drink in Boca Raton?

    This weekend, after-dinner conversation with family focused on presidential politics, the upcoming campaign, and politically hued media bias. Talk of Romney's "47 percent" comment got me thinking: Which red wine was in the decanter on the table seen in the now infamous candid video of Romney that ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 19, 2012

    What Wine for a [California] Veggie Sandwich?

    The first time I had a [California] veggie sandwich (in California, they just call it a "veggie sandwich"), it was at the legendary Source on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. By the time I got there (an undergrad at UCLA in the late '80s), founder Father Yod and the Source family were long gone (as ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 9, 2012

    Top 5 Red Wines to Serve Chilled in Summer

    Some are more apt to reach for white than red wine during summer months, and it's perfectly understandable: White wines are generally served chilled, red wines generally not. But when summertime arrives at our house, I find myself craving earthy red wines to pair with the smoked ribs we are offered ... More >>

  • Dining

    July 5, 2012

    1981 and Now

    The Top 12 Texas Junk Foods.

  • Blogs

    July 2, 2012

    Top 5 All-American Red Wines for July 4th Grilling

    It seems only natural to go All American for our Fourth of July recommendations. After all, wine -- and our nation's bizarre relationship with alcohol -- have been part of our history since the time of the Founding Fathers. "In nothing have the habits of the palate more decisive influence than in ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 25, 2012

    Like That Wine? Try This One: A Guide to Texas Wine Varietals

    In last week's cover story, we discussed the fact that Texas vineyards still stubbornly grow varietals that aren't suited to the Texan weather or soil -- well-known grapes such as Merlot, Cabernet and Chardonnay. But they're doing it for a reason: Too many wine drinkers don't want to stray from the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 18, 2012

    Eggs and Pinot Noir, a Guilty Pleasure

    Omelette Of all French dishes, the omelette is perhaps the most thoroughly representative. The French omelette is known far and wide, by reputation, at all events, and various are the parodies of the great French dish that are to be met with in the different corners of the world. In some places, om ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 15, 2012

    Forget the Boring Tie: 5 Wines for Father's Day

    Five years ago, it would have been unimaginable to give dad wine for Father's Day. Back then, in the age before the millennial generation decided that it would make wine its favorite luxury beverage, we still bought our fathers ties, golf clubs, and Weber grills and smokers to celebrate their "speci ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 30, 2012

    What Are "Tannins" in Wine?

    Have you ever been to a wine tasting or dinner party and heard some blowhard try to befuddle and belittle an enthusiastic however neophyte wine lover by asking can you taste how smooth the tannins are in this [red] wine? One of the most common misperceptions in the wine world is that you can taste ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 23, 2012

    B[ring] Y[our] O[wn] B[arbera]

    In the aftermath of recent posts here at Wine Time on corkage and tipping etiquette, Lucio's BYOB and Grill seemed like an ideal destination for a working dinner with a colleague -- a demilitarized zone, as it were. After all, it has "BYOB" in the name of the venue. Not knowing what to expect in ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 14, 2012

    Digging a German Red Quaffer from Pfalz

    Generally, when wine nerds like me think of fine wines from Germany, we think white: Mosel Riesling, with its enormous capacity for longevity and nuance, its bright acidity and vibrant minerality, is considered by many to be one of Europe's greatest wines. (Celebrity sommelier and winner of this yea ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 23, 2012

    Wine(s) of the Week: Austin Food & Wine Festival Preview

    Anthony Giglio is simply one of the funniest and most fun-to-be-around people I know in the wine writing business today. The New York-born son of Neapolitan immigrants, he loves wine, food, and life with a passion that spans the divide between old world and new. And whether he's guiding a tasting of ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 3, 2012

    A Wonderful Time at Brenner's on the Bayou's Wine Revolution

    This past weekend, beautiful Houstonians donning flats and bright resort-casual attire, per the event's invitation, skipped out on their Saturday country club visits and spa days in favor of Brenner's on the Bayou's third annual Wine Revolution. Set in tents under the bright sun, amidst Brenner's hi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 26, 2012

    Wine of the Week: Your Grandfather's Chianti But I Like It

    Italian wine is our thing. And when I say that, I don't mean that we don't like and drink French, Spanish, and Californian wine. But when it comes to the wine that my wife and I serve and drink in our home, that we drink most often when we go out, and what we stash away in our wine cellar, Italian w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 19, 2012

    Wine of the Week: Eyrie Vineyards Pinot Noir (Willamette)

    Of all the wine-growing regions in the U.S., none seems to make more sense to me than the Willamette Valley, Oregon (although the Finger Lakes in New York state comes in at a close second). When rich white dudes were inspired to plant French varieties in Napa like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Ch ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 12, 2012

    Wine of the Week: Who Needs Another Merlot When You Have Cerasuolo di Vittoria?

    Did the world really need another Merlot and Chardonnay in 1995? Evidently, the Planeta family thought so, and when the younger generation of this Sicilian clan launched the eponymous winery in the mid-1990s, they delivered bold, oaky, concentrated, and highly alcoholic Chardonnay, Merlot, and Syrah ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 20, 2012

    Odd Pair: What Wine Do You Serve with Your Baked Potato?

    Baked potatoes at our house are much more than a meal. They are a religion. We don't just do sour cream. We do sour cream-infused with freshly ground horseradish, a kiss of white wine, and kosher salt. We don't do "bacon bits." We do crumbled, crispy, center-cut bacon that's been fried the day bef ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 9, 2011

    Wine & Truffle Dinner at Valentino Vin Bar

    Photos by Christina UticoneDolcetto d'Alba​As if a wine hangover weren't bad enough, did you know you can actually get a truffle hangover? I woke up with one after five luscious courses of food at the recent Truffle & Wine dinner held at Valentino. Who can resist a hook like white truffles -- ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 30, 2011

    Tasting Notes: This Week in Wine Blogs

    Another Wine Blog: Love born in the blogosphere. It's a beautiful thing. A few weeks ago, when I shared a glass of stinky, delicious Cortese (from Piedmont) with tandem wine bloggers Amy and Joe Power, authors of Another Wine Blog, they told me the story of how they met in the "pre-blog" era, in a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 17, 2011

    10 Thanksgiving Wines (That We Actually Drink)

    Photos by Jeremy Parzen.Dolcetto can deliver character without overwhelming the palate or breaking the bank.​Yes, folks, it's that predictable time of year when everyone posts their Thanksgiving wine recommendations. Among the literally hundreds of blogs and feeds that I follow, one of my favo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 14, 2011

    Wine of the Week: An "Old Vine" Zinfandel from California (Where Else?)

    Photo by Jeremy Parzen.The "Old Vine" Zinfandel by Bogle showed judicious restraint in its alcohol content and concentration.​What does the designation "old vine" mean, anyway? And how did it come to be a "brand name" for California wines in the 2000s? Vine age is a key element in the qualit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 14, 2011

    What Do Wine and Saddles Have In Common? The Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo

    ​Over the course of a weekend, volunteers with the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo wash 20,000 wine glasses in two days. It's just one of the staggering statistics behind the annual International Wine Competition, the contest that leads to the Rodeo Uncorked! Wine Show and to a few lucky wineri ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 2, 2011

    Top 12 Wines Under $15 for the Holidays

    A $10 sparkling wine for the holidays: Toso is one of our top picks.​Last night, Whole Foods Market introduced its Top 10 wines for the holidays -- except that this year, like the days of Christmas, there are actually 12. Historically, some of the recommended wines have been held up at custom ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 21, 2011

    Odd Pair: Wine and Legs (or Tears That Rhyme with Ears)

    Photos by Jeremy Parzen.The legs of 2005 Langhe Nebbiolo Sperss by Gaja (Piedmont, Italy), tasted this week in Houston.​How many times have you been at a dinner party and heard some blowhard say something like the following (uttered with a fake British accent): Observe carefully: After swirli ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 14, 2011

    Odd Pair: Top 5 Wines to Take to Burger Guys

    Photos by Jeremy ParzenDuck fat fries at the Burger Guys.​A few weeks ago, in the first part of this series, we quoted one of the top chefs in the U.S. today, Eric Ripert of Le Bernardin in New York, on the virtues of the fast food burger in our country. "There is something about these ingred ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 13, 2011

    Ingredient of the Week: Cabernet Sauvignon

    Photo by John SuhA good cheap wine from Costco​What is it? Cabernet Sauvignon is a dry red wine discovered during the 17th century by crossing the Cabernet Franc and the Sauvignon Blanc grape varieties. Its origins are in the Bordeaux region of France, but it has since spread all over the wo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 10, 2011

    Wine of the Week: Brunello di Montalcino

    This week finds me on my annual pilgrimage to Montalcino (in the province of Siena, Tuscany), land of one of the world's most famous and highly prized wines, Brunello di Montalcino. That's the ancient and now extinct volcano Mount Amiata in the photo (taken on Saturday morning at daybreak in the vi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 6, 2011

    Wine of the Week: Texas Blanc du Bois

    ​Above: Blanc du Bois grapes from the 2010 harvest at the Cruz de Comal Winery in the Texas Hill Country. To tell the story of winemaking in Texas today, we need to start with what happened in California back in the 1970s and the way wine has been marketed historically in the U.S. When I was ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 2, 2011

    Odd Pair: Pseudo-Italian Sports Bar and French Wine

    ​Let's face it: No matter how you dress or slice the meatballs (more on that below), if you have ESPN constantly streaming on monitors that hover above your bar and dining room, you are a sports bar -- even if you slap ristorante italiano onto the name of your restaurant. According to its web ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 19, 2011

    Odd Pair: Cheeseburger and Barbaresco

    ​My friend and blogging colleague Franco Ziliani -- Italy's top wine blogger and veteran enojournalist -- is always astonished at how Americans "apply" the great wines of Italy. In Europe, the food and wine canon guides the "user" in ensuring that the wine will be enjoyed to the fullest by pa ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 8, 2011

    Wine of the Week: Pinot Noir Isn't the New Merlot

    ​Three years ago, when I attended a talk by Wine & Spirits Magazine editor-in-chief Josh Greene at the Unified Wine and Grape Symposium in Sacramento, California, he discussed the rising popularity of Pinot Noir and its eclipse of Merlot as the by-the-glass go-to grape among young wine profes ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 26, 2011

    Wine of the Week: Zweigelt, a Red to Chill for Summer

    ​1888 was a momentous year in the history of Western Civilization. It was the year that Nietzsche went mad and the year he scribed his last cogent and coherent works (I, for one, am a huge fan of Twilight of the Idols, or, How to Philosophize with a Hammer). And it's also the year that marked ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 20, 2011

    The Generous Pour Event at Capital Grille

    Our server, Susan, kept us happy with "generous pours" during the Generous Pour Event​To truly understand wine, its complexity, what distinguishes a good wine from bad one, and how it should pair with food, takes years of study. That's why there are only 171 Master Sommeliers in the world, and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 12, 2011

    Who Doesn't Like Heitz?

    ​If you've been following along here at Wine Time on the Eating Our Words blog, you know that we don't drink a lot of Californian Cabernet Sauvignon at our house. Fact of the matter is we rarely drink monovarietal (i.e., a wine made from a single grape variety) Cabernet Sauvignon at all. Ca ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 7, 2011

    Odd Pair: Hot Dogs and Claret

    ​Hot dogs and their preparation command a quasi-spiritual reverence in our home. Great -- even extreme -- care is taken in preparing the condiments: Heinz Ketchup, Grey Poupon Mustard, Best Maid Sweet Jalapeño Relish, celery salt, and sliced half-sour pickles, in this case requested especiall ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 20, 2011

    Wine of the Week: "Oaky May Be Bad, but Oak Is Good."

    ​If you're anywhere between 21 and 51 years of age (I'll be 44 next month), you were brought up with the notion that oak flavors were a sign of a fine wine. Back in the 1970s, when huge investment in the Californian wine industry began to take shape, the dudes in charge -- think Gallo and Mo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 7, 2011

    Wine of the Week: A Cool-Weather Cabernet Sauvignon from California

    ​When we think of "California Cabernet," the next two words that come to mind are invariably "Napa Valley" -- the AVA (American Viticultural Area) that changed the way the world perceived American winemaking back in the 1970s. Since that time, "Napa Valley Cab" (oh, how I wish people would st ... More >>

  • More >>