(Alsace, France) $25 (750ml)

One of my favorite European producers, Domaine Weinbach, has been run by the Faller family of women for decades. The winery—a converted 18th century Capucin monastery—is both humble and inspiring. The domaine’s dry, mineraly rieslings are wines of great purity, crispness and cold sunlight. They aren’t conventionally fruity, and have a gravitas and density to them that’s stunning. To drink this Reserve Personelle is to drink in elegance and energy. (13.5% abv)

92 points KM

Available at Saratoga Wine

The wire cage that holds a sparkling wine cork onto the neck of the bottle is called a:

  • A. Birdcage
  • B. Stall
  • C. Helmet
  • D. Muzzle

Scroll down for the answer!

“One day her mother said to her, ‘Come, Little Red Riding Hood, here is a piece of cake and a bottle of wine. Take them to your grandmother, she is ill and weak, and they will do her good.’”

—“Rotkäpchen” (Little Red Riding Hood or Little Red-Cap) printed in Kinder-und Hausmärchen, a collection of German fairy tales first published in 1812 by the Brothers Grimm

In 1989 and 1990, two California school districts in Culver City and Empire, respectively, banned this version of the tale over concerns about the mention of alcohol in the story.


Why are many zinfandel wines good in alcohol? Several factors are at work, but one of the leading ones is this: Zinfandel has a genetic proclivity to ripen unevenly. On the same cluster, some grapes will be perfectly ripe, some will still be under-ripe and others will be so ripe that they’re virtually raisins. If a winemaker picks grape clusters like this, there’s a high chance that the wine will taste discombobulated—both unripe and overripe at the same time. To avoid this, most winemakers let zinfandel hang on the vine until the last of the grapes have become perfectly ripe (at which point some of them are overly ripe). Then, during fermentation, the yeasts convert the abundant sweetness of the overripe grapes into alcohol, resulting in zinfandels with a naturally high alcohol content.


From the Oh No! Files

Yeah so, everybody knows that when it comes to smelling fire hydrants, pooches are pros. Anything with urine? A dog will ace it every time. Certain aromas, however, elude man’s best friend. New research by Dr. John McGann and published in the journal Science suggests that when it comes to smelling wine (and bananas if you must know), humans perform better than canines. You can thank your complex orbitofrontal cortices and intricate olfactory bulbs for the advantage.

D.Known in French as a muselet or muzzle, the wire cage that holds a Champagne or sparkling wine cork in place is very important in opening a bottle of bubbly safely. The muzzle should not be removed before the cork is eased out. Rather, the muzzle should be loosened (about 6 turns will loosen it), and then the wire removed with the cork at the same time.