Wine Tasting

Cassis: A Timeless AOC

Cassis is the most beautiful AOC (appellation d'origine contrôlée) in France: the vineyards cling to the slopes of a magical amphitheater that plunges towards the shimmering Mediterranean. The Phocaeans (ancient Greeks for Asia Minor) must have been enchanted with these slopes when they first saw them 2,600 years ago. And they did well to plant them to the vine. The perfect exposure, dry and nutrient-poor soils and the cooling Mediterranean breezes still give rise to some of the most expressive wines of the Mediterranean. The wines of Cassis have made this tiny seafaring village tucked right next to vibrant Marseille one of the references for white wine not just in France but in the world.

In the 16th century, Cassis became renowned for white wines, a unique distinction in a region that at that time produced mostly reds. Today, the Cassis AOC remains unique within Provence with white wines accounting for 67% of production. Rosé, which constitutes about 90% of the production of Provence, in Cassis accounts for 30% and reds account for only 3%.
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Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

Chilling With Friends

It was the eve of a minor surgical procedure that was to keep me off my feet for four to six weeks. What was I to do? Naturally, I invited friends over for meal-worthy charcuterie board to chill, try out some wine ... and to keep my mind off the knife. What would you have done?

While there is no one “recipe” for putting together a charcuterie board, I invite...
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Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

Spice is Nice

When faced with a recipe that is very spice-forward, I am sometimes at a loss for the wine selection. Spice, in this case, is all spice and no heat. The hottest spice within the recipe is the dried mustard powder. Ancho chile (sweet, not hot), cumin, coriander, and mustard are the other ingredients in...
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Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

The Luck of the Draw

I’m a typical Virgo. I am very particular about things - from the color of my socks, to the route I drive to and from work. I would say that I am deliberate, especially when it comes to food and wine. I don’t do potlucks; I don’t believe there should be any “luck” in a meal, or with its accompanying...
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