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Whose are better?

EVERYBODY LOVES a wine bargain. Retail chains reflect the zeitgeist, so they’re rushing to cash in by creating house brands to keep their costs down and customers buying. The latest is US giant Walmart Inc., which rolled out its new Winemakers Selection collection in 1,100 of its nearly 4,000 stores in May.

A little bit of honesty from wines

THE SOUTHWESTERN region of France has played host to many films, from the classic Grace Kelly-starrer To Catch a Thief, to the comedy Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. But while they like to use it as a setting for movies about swindlers and con men, Thomas Dassé, Export Manager of Lionel Osmin & Cie, describes the people there as “more than honest.”

Aussie winemaker blending in fiery Chinese liquor

NOTHING IS sacred at Treasury Wine Estates Ltd. in the pursuit of profit.

Heaven for oenophiles

I was enthralled no end gazing at unopened bottles of some of my dream wines to taste — Chateau Latour 1936, Chateau Petrus 1961, Domaine de Romanee Conti La Tache 1978, Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1982, and Screaming Eagle Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 1999 — all in one room. These five bottles are worth over P4,000,000 (... yup, not a typo), and are some of the most outstanding wines ever made, not to mention, their rarity given the old vintages. But there is much more as these wines are just five among the over 2,000 wine labels the uberly luxurious Okada Manila Casino Hotel carries in its wine list.

French discover new pleasure… adult comics about wine

PARIS — It is no secret that the French love wine. But they are also the world’s second biggest consumers of graphic novels after the Japanese.

Hidden luxury from pantry: wine and tuna pairings

FEELING A little stressed out but unable to take the weekend off for a vacation? Pamper yourself at home with good bottle of wine, a couple of cans of tuna in the pantry, and a few odds and ends in your refrigerator.

WineGame app brings the Master Sommelier experience to the masses

LAST WEEK, Rob Wilder, the co-founder of ThinkFoodGroup, announced the release of WineGame, a simple app that instantly turns any bottle into a fun, multiple-choice blind tasting game. Even if you don’t know Wilder’s name, you certainly know his partner’s: star chef and humanitarian Jose Andrés. The game began as a late-night lark between Wilder and Andrés who would challenge each other to blindly taste and then correctly name the wine hidden inside a paper bag.

Drinking the Pope’s wine

POPE FRANCIS is a popular Pope, and while he answers ostensibly to God, he is like a normal celebrity: he has pictures taken with other famous people, people pay attention to what he wears, and he has to deal with some of the intricacies that other celebrities face. When he visited the Philippines in January of 2015, crowds swelled to the thousands to greet him. Like most celebrities too, what wine he consumes is of some interest, and on June 12, guests at Chef Jessie’s in Rockwell were treated to glasses of the very same wine that Pope Francis drank during his visit.

Now’s the time: 3 bottles of 1774 vintage wine on sale...

STRASBOURG, France — Tucked away in a vaulted cellar of eastern France for eight generations, they may be the oldest bottles of wine available...

These bad new pink wines prove that Rosé has gone too...

By Elin McCoy, Bloomberg NO MATTER what you do or where you go this summer, you won’t escape rosé. The pink boom just keeps expanding....

The very best (and worst) wines from the 2017 Bordeaux vintage

By Elin McCoy, Bloomberg WHEN I headed to Bordeaux to taste barrel samples from the region’s 2017 vintage, I was not hopeful. I’d followed reports of...

South Africa wine production drying up in water crisis

PARIS — South Africa is set for a steep decline in wine production in 2018 as the country grapples with a water crisis ravaging...

French Crémants are a delicious, sparkling alternative for Champagne

MADE BY the same method as Champagne, French crémants are the latest buzz-grabbers in the expanding bubbly universe — and a wise choice if...

Bignay and duhat wines get the gourmet treatment

THE FRUIT trees in your backyard, or the ones lining the highways you cruise down during road trips apparently yield excellent wine. Bignay, duhat, and...

The Titanic and underwater wine aging

WHEN CHAMPAGNE from the infamous sunken Titanic was recovered in 1985 — 73 years after the luxury ship went down on April 15, 1912...

Robots, giant bottles, and bubbly will define the wine world in...

By Elin McCoy, Bloomberg MOST OF the wine world was happy to wave goodbye to 2017, a year of vine-killing frosts, hail, drought, and destructive...

Organic Champagne making a slow fizz into glasses

REIMS, FRANCE — A bubble it is not: the organic movement is only slowly taking root in France’s Champagne region, although its proponents believe...

China’s most awarded wine is now here

The 17th edition of the Grand Wine Experience, subtitled “Degustation,” took place at the Marriott Hotel Grand Ballroom on Nov. 24. Once more the...

The cat that sold millions of bottles of wine

Gato Negro -- Spanish for “black cat” -- was born as a wine brand in Chile in 1960, making it probably the oldest wine...

On the road to being a ‘super second’

Château Montrose: bridging the huge price gap between the first growths and the rest. WORDS  SHERWIN A. LAO Château Montrose is one of only two Saint-Estèphe appellation...

Thanksgiving gift and menu ideas

Thanksgiving party is the perfect time to gather family, friends and dear ones who have become a special part of your life. It is...

From grape to table, Dutch community toasts urban vines

THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS — As a high-speed train rattled past their heads, amateur Dutch wine makers were busy gathering the last of the season’s...

World’s earliest evidence of winemaking found in Georgia

MIAMI — The world’s earliest evidence of grape winemaking has been detected in 8,000-year-old pottery jars unearthed in Georgia, making the tradition almost 1,000...

The Pink Phenomenon

ROSÉ, PINK or blush wines are getting more and more popular lately, both internationally and also here locally. In the Philippines rosé wines seem to...

Tapas and wine

Every Friday and Saturday of November, wine and Spanish cuisine lovers will find a treat at the Lush Bar and Lounge of Luxent Hotel....

Chateau Kirwan on the rise

CHATEAU KIRWAN has always been a great Medoc wine. There was never a doubt that when then Emperor Napoleon III wanted a classification system...

Italy plies visitors with wine as it eyes tourism catch-up

BOLGHERI, ITALY – Eating lunch in Italy’s Bolgheri wine country, it is not hard to understand why the number of international visitors to this...

World’s smallest wine vintage since 1961 may lift booze prices

THE WORLD may produce the least wine this year in half a century, after small grape harvests in Italy, France, and Spain, a global...

Bordeaux wine makers optimistic on 2017 quality after frost damage

BORDEAUX wine makers harvested healthy, ripe grapes this year even after the worst frosts in a quarter-century hit vineyards in April and significantly reduced...

No longer just a man’s world

A SMILE CAN sell, and the wine scene in Manila has seen boatloads of handsome men from wineries promoting their wares. But a woman...

This year’s extreme weather had a serious effect on global wine

EARLIER this summer, the Napa Valley was on track to be one of the world’s luckiest wine regions this year, having escaped everything from...

Days of wine and… more wine

WINE IS entangled in French history and identity, and Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila pays tribute to its French roots with its annual Sofitel Wine...

Wine tales for oenophiles

For this column, I will do something different. Lawyers have lawyer jokes, anecdotes, and tales, and so do doctors, athletes, and other professions. How...

Pet peeves Pet peeves

EVERYONE has pet peeves when it comes to day to day living. My two major pet peeves include enduring people speaking loudly in movie...

Ambitious wine makers, climate change makes for good, cheap Pinot

GREAT Pinot Noirs, as a friend once put it, have a near-sexual allure. The first taste can turn you into a bottle stalker, which...

10 canned wines taste-tested so you don’t have to

By Joel Stein, Bloomberg THE wine-in-a-can revolution began its ascent in 2004 when film director, hotelier, and wine maker Francis Ford Coppola introduced Sofia Blanc...

Sweet Canadian victory

WHO WOULD have thought that one of Europe’s most well-kept wine secrets, the ice wine (also written as one word, icewine), would also be...

Common wine myths

(Second of two parts) CONTINUING from where I left off in my last column, there are more wine myths that need to be explained and...

To lure wine lovers, sake makers learn it’s all about the...

BREWERY EXECUTIVE Kosuke Kuji brought his best sake to a New York booze showcase 16 years ago hoping to promote high-end Japanese rice wine...

Sofitel celebrates France with food and wine

WHILE the celebrations for French National Day -- Bastille Day -- (celebrated on July 14) are over, Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila, mindful of its...

Common wine myths

WINE CAN be a baffling product. This is also the reason why wine enthusiasts are fascinated no end by the multitude of flavors, all...

From investment banking to wine

By The Glass By Sherwin A. Lao I MET with one of the most fascinating wine owners last week -- Luis Felipe Edwards, Jr., of the...

Free wine endangered on Asian airlines after OPEC accord

SOME OF Asia’s marquee airlines that spoil passengers with free alcohol and in-flight entertainment may soon have to kick the habit. The on-board giveaways, famously...

Grape grower’s savior

How one man’s legacy put Barossa on the wine-making map. WORDS  SHERWIN A. LAO Some of the finest and most expensive wines in Australia come from the...

France’s new ‘Disneyland of wine’ sets heads spinning

PARIS -- It has already been dubbed an “adult Disneyland” and “the amusement park of our dreams” by US college students. But the Cite du...