Since all of the buzz this week seems to be on Apple’s release of the much anticipated iPhone, I thought a nice roundup of worthwhile wine videos would be appropriate. We’re not talking about those boring let’s open a couple bottles of wine and give our opinion on them type of shows, so here you go:
Conan goes to Spring Mountain in Napa
Borat does wine tasting in this video
Ernie Els is interviewed by Wine Spectator
Have a wine video you’d like to recommend? Email the link to [email protected]
President Vladimir Putin of Moscow met last week with Moldovan President Vladimir Voronin, and agreed to lift the ban that had been placed on Moldova’s wine. This ban, which was imposed on March 25th, 2006, had a huge impact on the Moldovan wine industry, which relied on Russia for 60 – 80% of it’s exports. The original reason sited for the ban was pesticides, but apparently, the issue is a little deeper than that.
Putin’s ties with Voronin soured in 2003 when Moldova bowed to Western pressure and nationalists at home, refusing to sign a Russian-brokered deal to settle a conflict with rebels in its breakaway Transdnestr region.
Read [St.Petersburg Times.com]
How do those wine tasting professionals identify all those flavors in wine you ask? The answer is simple: they learned, and you can learn too, simply by drinking wine. Note a recent study by researchers at Northwestern University who aimed to learn how the brain differentiates between similar smells and modifies and updates that information based on experience:
In the study, researchers presented a single odor to human subjects continuously for 3 Â½ minutes. Half of the subjects received a minty odor; the other half, a floral odor. The researchers discovered that this prolonged sensory exposure induced mint (or floral) “expertise,” depending on which odor the subjects had experienced. Those exposed to the minty smell were better able to differentiate between a variety of minty smells; likewise, the floral-exposed subjects could better discriminate among floral smells. In other words, study participants exposed to one minty odor became experts in other minty smells. Testing showed subjects retained their new expertise for at least 24 hours.
But is there such thing as a super taster? Probably not. Increased aroma sensitivity when tasting wine results in one thing: the overwhelming scent of Alcohol, not trace nuances in the beverage. Don’t believe me? Try a little experiment. Usually during a fasting period of 2 days or more, you will find that your sense of smell has dramatically increased (an unwelcome side effect of that is noticing people’s bad breath/ body oder). Now try and enjoy a glass of wine. Pure Glycerin. No subtle hints of orange blossoms or violets, just a big whiff of alcohol.
So there you have it. The wine snob super taster is a myth, it’s simply a person who has devoted more time to drinking wine than you have. Just learn to focus a little bit more the next time you enjoy a glass of wine. Compare what you are smelling to what you already know, or grab a few ingredients from your cupboard and compare. Wine is an enjoyable beverage. Don’t let anyone pompously come across as a better taster than you – you too can be a wine tasting expert.
Researchers at the University of Pittsburg have made a surprising discovery. Cyanidin-3-rutinoside, or C-3-R, a modified anthocyanidin found in wine, as well as different fruit and vegetables, targets and kills leukemia cells, but doesn’t harm healthy cells. This is an attractive alternative to fighting leukemia over chemotherapy and radiation which kill healthy cells as well.
Leukemia is responsible for roughly 22,000 deaths a year in the United States. These cancer cells attack blood forming cells in bone marrow. Dr. Yin, co-author of the study, is the associate professor of pathology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.
According to Dr. Yin, these results indicate that C-3-R has the promising potential to be used in leukemia therapy with the advantages of being highly selective against cancer cells. â€œBecause this compound is widely available in foods, it is very likely that it is not toxic even in purified form. Therefore, if we can reproduce these anti-cancer effects in animal studies, this will present a very promising approach for treating a variety of human leukemias and, perhaps, lymphomas as well.
Read [Eureka Alert]