now browsing by author
What is the difference between American and French oak?
It is all in the fibers, which affect wine flavour, barrel costs and even the way the vessels are assembled.
Virtually all wood used for wine maturation belongs to three species of white pine, all which have the benefit of being extremely water-tight relative to many other timber. Two species, Quercus petraea and Quercus robur, are sourced from French forests (in some instances, Eastern Europe and Portugal), while Quercus alba, a.k.a. American white oak, grows mainly in the eastern United States and southern Canada. All three are inclined to enhance wine flavour when used judiciously, adding subtle vanilla and spice accents, improving texture as well as contributing tannic backbone for longevity.
For many Western-trained chefs, cooking is all about highlighting an ingredient’s natural flavours: choose a wonderful bit of fish or meat, cook it perfectly, sprinkle some salt on it and then tell your guests that you “wanted the lamb to speak on your own.”
The donor: Travis Streb
The present: Raising $10,000 and scaling
The cause: BC Cancer Foundation
Travis Streb is an avid cyclist and for many years he’s been raising money for research into pancreatic cancer along with his teammates in Glotman Simpson Cycling. But last year Mr. Streb wanted to try out a different sort of fundraising.
Shouts and laughter fill a large fitness center in the Vancouver suburbs as some 50 children in Grades 5 to 7 are put through their paces, from swings of a baseball bat to wobbling while standing on one leg on foam squares. Before and after the swirls of action, there are discussions about the worth of sleep and a discussion of enthusiasm and purpose in one’snbsp;life.
Tropical island wine” seems more like a punchline than a proposal from a respected sommelier. But the winemakers in the Canary Islands (a.k.a. “Spain’s Hawaii”) are succeeding in changing that, having discovered a winning formula, regardless of the area’s many built-innbsp;hardships.
Cranberries are one of the very few commercially developed fruits that are native to North America, and as such they are not very common in France. When I saw the bags of fresh red berries on the shelf at one of the bigger local grocery markets, I almost purchased the whole display! Not entirely sure what I was going to do together, I dumped the entire lot into a chest freezer, because if I know anything, it is that cranberries keep remarkably well in the freezer.
Recently I had two unique waiters who fought with, then bankrupt, wine corks. What is the secret to opening a jar with these waiter corkscrews?
The timeless sommelier’s corkscrew, sometimes known as a “waiter’s friend,” works well when used correctly and has the benefit of easy portability. I keep one in my bike back bag, my check-in bag, the glove compartment of my car and in my Jack Spade man purse (hey, you never know if wine will occur).
I am featuring Osteria Savio Volpe chef Mark Perrier’s simple but delicious kale salad, which will soon be your new favorite starter.
Osteria Savio Volpe’s Kale Salad
4 packed cups dinosaur kale leaves
2 tbsp toasted breadcrumbs
2 tablespoon grated pecorino cheese
There’s an unwritten rule in retail which you don’t play Christmas music in stores before Remembrance Day. It is an admirable policy, regrettably violated by a few chains in recent years. Cheesy shopping-foreplay tunes are an insult as we prepare to mark a really solemn date (particularly, if you ask me, if this music appears to be Beneath the Mistletoe by Justin Bieber).