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THE BEST WINES FOR CHRISTMAS Christmas is fast approaching; this means one thing, you will be thinking about the sips and bites you will be offering as part of your holiday spread. There will be numerous opportunities to pop a couple of bottles of wine. If it’s your duty to provide the festive sips at a Christmas dinner, or any other holiday gathering, you might be wondering what wine will be the best or how you will make the decision on which wines to serve. Not to worry, this write-up will clear those doubts. Below are some of our lists for the best wines for Christmas and get ready to enjoy the yuletide spirit. RUINART BRUT BLANC DE BLANCS  Since Christmas is a celebration, it means that no celebration can be complete without champagne. Ruinart Blanc de Blancs is a go-to for the holidays. The wine is super flexible at the table, with notes of golden apple, lemon curd, and almond. Most importantly, this brand of wine can be really enjoyed while unwrapping presents.  PROSECCO If there’s a Christmas brunch coming up, you can never go wrong with this Sparkling Italian wine. Prosecco does one thing; it leaves you open with plenty of options because your guest will have to enjoy the sweet tastes of white grape. Easily start your holiday season with a blend of honeydew, green apples, and creamy mineral textures. This brand of wine pairs well with fruits and baked goods covered in powdered sugar during brunch. SANTA MARGHERITA CHIANTI CLASSICO RISERVA The Christmas holiday remains a perfect time to enjoy a medium-bodied red wine. The Santa Margherita Chianti Classico Riserva is sophisticated, yet approachable, with seasonally proper notes of plums, cherries, and sweet spices. This wine can be served with both pork and beef, including any category of game meat. The more flavorful the dish, the better it will be for this wine. OLEMA PINOT NOIR You need to check this Pinot Noir from Olema if you crave for a slightly lighter red wine. This Sonoma County wine is a mixture of grapes from the Sonoma Coast and Russian River Valley, which comprises the very best of both worlds. A typical Christmas dinner of ham or turkey is the perfect pairing for this wine. It has fragrant, bright, and filled with red fruits, including strawberry and cherry. It goes so well with those lighter meats, including any vegetarian dishes. SCHRAMSBERG BLANC DE NOIRS 2015 Nothing speaks more of a Christmas holiday more than a bottle of sparkling wine. It makes everyone much more bearable, and the glowing lights from the tree reflecting off the glass full of bubbles give a special feeling. As it gets colder out, you will enjoy it more when you step outside and power your champagne with a Blanc de Noirs. It is entirely made with a red grape. The use of red grapes gives more structure to the wine. EGLY-OURIET GRAND CRU BRUT 2009 Besides being with family, one of my top must-haves during the holiday gathering is a Champagne. It has a way of bringing happiness, warmth, friendliness, and hospitality to any get-together. Champagne is enjoyable while opening gifts during Christmas morning. It is generous with a beautiful freshness and refinement. THE BOTTOM LINE Choosing the ideal wine to serve at Christmas dinner may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. When pairing wine with a special Christmas meal, just concentrate on your main dish. Red wines are preferred for pork or beef while white wine pair nicely with ham, poultry, or even seafood. If you are seeking for a wine to pair with your family and friend, these selections are sure to please your holiday crowd.



Humidity is an indispensable, yet often ignored feature in wine storage design. A relative humidity (RH) of 50% to 70% is standard for an adequate wine storage humidity level, with 60% being the best. In the absence of the perfect humidity, the quality of the wine is likely to be altered in several ways. Such as; When the humidity exceeds 70%, it will likely cause degradation and mold of the labels, including the glue. When the humidity is not up to 50%, the corks will start to dry out. This results in the loss of liquid in the bottles and possible wine degradation. Upholding the correct temperature in a cellar will go a long way to preserve your valuable investment until it has gotten to its maximum consumption age. With some wines taking about ten years or more to reach maturity, your wine storage system’s quality and longevity cannot be overemphasized. TIPS FOR STORING WINE Problems resulting from humidity issues can be avoided or solved with the right planning. One of the proven tips for storing wine in hotter climates is to keep it away from heat. Wine can be referred to as a living organism that breathing, so heat is not perfect for it, because it causes it to age speedily than desired. Temperatures that cause wine heat damage are remarkably low, generally at 80 degrees. A minimum of 4mils vapor barrier installation round the entire room. Plastic is preferable, with seams taped and overlapped. The vapor barrier usually installed on the warm side (or outside) of the cellar insulation. This is to avert condensation from forming on the vapor barrier, which will possibly cause mold. Only a cooling unit cannot add moisture or humidify cellar air. A humidifier integrated into the cooling system is needed to do so. This helps operates and dispenses the moisture regularly in the re-circulating air. Though, a freestanding humidifier can also be installed in combination with a cooling unit as long as a wall-mounted and high-quality thermostat controls this. THE BOTTOM LINE Humidity can cause significant harm to wine. High humidity helps keep moisture in the wine bottle, rather than allowing it to travel into the cork and eventually evaporate. On the other hand, hot temperatures, too cold (or fluctuating much) are reasons for climate control, too much, or a lack of humidity.



This is a question majority of people often ask. There is a distinction between sparkling wine and actual Champagne. We are here to explain the specific differences between the two. About Champagne The important thing you need to be aware of Champagne is that it is a sparkling wine from the region of France. The name is peculiar to wines from this region. However, there are other kinds of sparkling wines, but those different types are not referred to as Champagne because they are not produced within the Champagne region. The Champagne region is known for mild climate together with a chalky soil so rich in quality minerals. The uniqueness of the soil gives a distinctive flavor to the grapes grown on it. Another essential fact that separates Champagne from other sparkling wines is that it must be made following the appellation d’ Origine Contrôlée (AOC) designation. This body regulates the production process and also ties a product to its region of origin. Along with Champagne, Armagnac and Calvados also have the status of AOC. The method of champagne production is called Méthode Champenoise is Méthode Champenoise which involves a two-step fermentation. The grape juice is fermented before bottling to trap the CO2 from escaping. The trapped CO2 is what produces the bubbles, which in turn make Champagne effervescent. Another essential fact about Champagne is that only six grapes varieties are used in producing it. Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, and Chardonnay are some of the most popular grapes. Furthermore, Champagne can also be produced with Petit Meslier, Pinot Blanc, and Arbane grapes. However, these are rarely used as the three mentioned above. Grapes for making Champagne are specially handpicked before being pressed. According to AOC, the grapes can only be pressed twice. Concentrated Cuvée also undergoes the same process.   What is “sparkling wine?” In its simplest form, sparkling wine is a wine with C02 bubbles suspended in it. How those bubbles got trapped and where they got there is what makes a significant difference. Spotting Sparkling wine is not difficult. It’s a carbonated wine with bubbles. If you must know, Champagne is, in fact, a sparkling wine, too. But not all sparkling wine is Champagne. This is very important. The method and location are what matters. Sparkling wines are made worldwide with different formulation methods to bring out numerous qualities in each wine. For example, the bubble size, including the fruitiness level makes sparkling wines different from each other. The different varieties of sparkling wines include: Prosecco.  This is a very dry Italian sparkling wine that comprises larger bubbles. Globally, Prosecco is used in mixed drink production. Sekt.  This is Germanys’ version of sparkling wine. It is sweeter and contains less alcohol when compared to Champagne. It also comprises of other aromas, such as pears and apples. Cava. This Spanish sparkling wine is made from Macabeu grapes, which has a similar flavor to Champagne. Cava production is modeled from champagne production though the grapes used in this process originated from Spain. Just like Champagne, cava comes from only a particular region in Spain, and the production uses one specific method. Methode Champenoise is the Spanish equivalent of Método Tradicional. THE BOTTOM LINE To determine whether a wine should be classified as Champagne or sparkling, you need to note the location it was produced. Looking out for the word “Champagne” on the bottle’s label is the easiest way to spot real-deal. In most cases, sparkling wine will be much less expensive when compared to Champagne. If you are in a difficult position of determining which one to go for, then you need to think about how you expect to use the wine. If you want to drink a bottle of quality wine, Champagne, or one of the higher-rated sparkling wines, is preferable.


WHAT ARE THE BEST WINES FOR A SUMMER BBQ? Summer is here! Cooking outdoors with family and friends remains a better way to celebrate the warmer months, even if the current situation around the world means that you can only have your immediate household present. And with a great meal some family members, you will want a bbq wine to match. Choosing good bbq wine can elevate the occasion. Most people associate bbq and grilled foods with beer, but did you know that wine pairs are exceptionally well? What we recommend is the kinds of wines that are for outdoors, fun, and friendship gathering. For this kind of summer gathering, you don’t want to serve your most exclusive wines, lest their subtle nuances wind up, and are overshadowed by the bold aromas and smell of the barbecue.  Below are some of our best bottles of wine for pairing with grilled foods of all kinds. Considering this list of the best wines for a summer barbecue, you will have enough twists and turns to keep summer exciting. 2017 Halter Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon If you crave Cabernet Sauvignon with a plate of grilled meats, consider a slight splurge for this wine. A bright rendition of this blend from Paso Robles offers a freshness reminiscent of California sunshine. Black current and cherry flavors dominate with hints of caramel. NV Allan Scott Cecilia Brut A well-priced sparkling wine presents freshness and grapefruit acidity assured to cut through even the deepest of barbecue flavors. And because this wine gives hints of juicy, sweet grilled pineapple on the palate, it is the bubbly just made for a summer barbecue. 2015 Jonata Todos Red Wine Vineyard Blend This is from California’s Ballard Canyon region. It is the blockbuster on the list. It’s bigger both in price and in the body. If you want to turn a summer gathering into an event to remember, consider splurging on this lesser-known blend. This unique blend offers an interplay of savory and sweet flavors.  Pinot Noir Overtime, Pinot Noir has been one of the most food-friendly red wines out there. Its flavors are subtle enough not to suppress the food that you are eating it with, and it makes an excellent match for poultry, seafood, and red meat. It’s mostly tasty paired with smoked meats because it has an earthy, smoky quality to it. Dry Rosé Rosé is a fun, flirty wine, ideal for sipping. With the aroma of watermelon, strawberry, and citrus, rosé has the right amount of acidity that stands up to grilled foods. Like Pinot Noir, Rosé can pair with a wide variety of dishes from grilled pork to seafood. It’s also a perfect match for grilled turkey burgers or even veggie burgers.  Zinfandel A big red wine is a necessity whenever you are serving up something big and beefy at your barbecue. The refreshing, coastal fruit gives balancing acidity to the vibrant red berry compote flavors, and while not complicated, it’s smooth and juicy and a perfect match for summer bbq. Also, Zinfandel has a silky feature that helps to tone down the smokiness of some grilled dishes in your face. The bottom line The key to effective wine for a summer bbq is simplicity. Avoid a wine that requires too much thought because summer setting doesn’t call for that. The wines should fit the food, and also fit the casual mood of the gathering.


True wine enthusiasts have mastered the art of storing wine. They know that ever since Ancient Egypt, there have been four factors affecting proper wine storage: the temperature ranging from 11 to 14 degrees Celsius, the humidity level of 60%–80%, the appropriate ventilation and no vibration. To satisfy all these elements of wine storage, wine pins came into existence. Now the connoisseur of fine wine can also be a connoisseur of beautiful wine pins. Whether you have an extensive cellar to designate to your fine wine collection or just a smaller space, there is a wine pin that is just right for your home and your requirements. Wine pins offer the perfect opportunity to build your dynamic showcase. They are of utmost necessity for anybody who is a wine connoisseur and has or intends to make a wine cellar at home. They are both decorative as well as practical. For whatever purpose, wine pins can serve as wine bottle storage and also add a beautiful display to your room. At Corbello Loxstone, we provide a solution to fit every purpose, décor and personality which will add ambience to a room, protect wine bottles in a cellar, or keep wine handy on the counter. Our wine pins comprise of precision-machined top grade of Brass or Aluminum; the groundbreaking design is constructed to last a lifetime and beyond. This is the ideal solution for wine cellars and interior decorators to display all sizes and applications. Furthermore, it ensures superior bottle stability compared to other conventional peg style with a more substantial portion of each bottle resting below its support. The design is simple while eliminating the need for additional materials or clutter such as rubber gaskets, straps, etc. It is important your wine storage facility looks good and adds to the décor of the room. Safe and stylish remains the ideal way to go. At Corbello Loxstone, we provide traditional wine pins that secure storage for your wine bottles. We have the wall mounted pins that offer just the right hanging wine style that you are looking for. With this beautiful technique, you will be able to feature an added display to your room as it completes the look there. These wine storage pins are well-made to fit any space; which in turn allows for accurate airflow and a suitable temperature to keep the wine at its best flavor and appearance. We are proud to offer such a varied range of wine pins and hope you find what you are looking for. Final Thoughts Mounting wine bottle storage pins on your wall is an excellent way to add style and decor to any home. It allows you to showcase a portion of your collection and not to keep wines at arm’s length. It also delivers optimal label visibility, allowing all bottles to be recognized at a glance, making hidden labels a thing of the past.


Many of us are unaware that the majority of fine wines are stored or aged in barrels made of oak. The reason for this is less well known. What are the advantages of oak? Are there disadvantages? Does oak barrel come in different varieties? Is there any major thing it does to the wine? How does the whole process work? Once the wine fermentation process is accomplished, wine is frequently racked to eliminate any larger solid particles. This young wine is usually ‘green.’ At this stage, it’s still raw and rough. It needs time to age gradually in vessels or containers that are comprised of inert materials. Old casks, stainless steel, or cement vats are often used for this. On the other hand, unoaked wine can originally be aged in little wooded barrels. These above-listed containers are not neutral because they tend to affect the wine as it ages. Oak Aging Wine As wine ages in wooden barrels, fine flavours from the oak gradually begin to influence its development. American, European, or French oak are some types of wine barrels normally used. Oak barrels are manufactured from staves. These are long pieces of oak wood fitted firmly together with metals made of hoops. The barrels are roasted over a fire to achieve either a light, medium, or dark toast level. Wine experts believe that barrels that are new with a light toast most likely will give lots of caramel and vanilla notes, while a darker toast will produce a roasted smokey, aromas. These barrels are obtained from different regions to impart somewhat different flavours and also affects how long to age wine in oak barrels. As the wine rests inside the barrel, chemical changes begin to react to the wine. The outcome is the softening of the harsh tannins existing in the fermentation process and a more intricate flavor. The different effect of a particular wood is always a captivating subject when discussed by winemakers. The barrel serves two purposes for the aging wine: it allows entrance of oxygen gently into the wine over time and conveys some of the character, or flavour of the wood into the wine. A brand-new barrel with oak chips for wine is always the best for this, and the outcome reduces gradually with repeated use. The Difference between Stainless Steel and Oak Barrel Aged Wines. The core difference between stainless steel and oak-aged wines is the presence or absence of oak flavours and aromas. Some grapes respond better to the various aging regimens. Chardonnay (neutral grapes), which lacks much aroma, will often be aged in oak to for more complexity. Stainless steel aging is more suitable for Riesling which is an aromatic grape whose characteristic aromas would vanish under the flavors of oak aging. An additional difference between stainless steel aged wine and oak barrel-aged wine is the price. Stainless steel aging is considerably less expensive than using oak because unlike oak barrels, steel barrels can be used again forever and are much stress-free to clean. Using a stainless steel aging also takes less time when compared to oak aging, which saves winemakers an essential space in the wine cellar. In conclusion, these outlined factors mean that wines made through stainless steel are expected to be less expensive for the consumer.


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