ERA Members Get To Know More About Wine & Dine

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On 19 July, ERA arranged for a Wine tasting and appreciation talk hosted at a major wine dealer Quality Wine Sdn Bhd in Subang Jaya. The owner of this Wine dealership, Mr Robert Tan who has close to 20 years’ experience in the wine business, gave the members an interesting understanding on wine varietals (type of grapes used in the production), wine notes and bouquet etc.

Brief Wine Tales

Early days of wine making goes back more than 3,000 years in early Persia (currently Iran) in the Syrah region, which the famous varietal Shiraz originates. This was long before the prominent wine making countries like France, Italy, Germany and Spain which Wine Connoisseurs term these wine making countries as “Old World Wine” regions. The grape varieties depending on type of wine to be produced go through a specific period of fermentation process. For example, Red wine is produced with the crushing of dark skin colour grapes variety together with its skin that will stain the juice red or dark maroon. The natural chemical “tannin” from the skin which has a strong anti-oxidant property, provides specific character to the wine and also perhaps what people claim about the “health” benefits of red wine?

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Robert Tan briefing the group including ERA President Datin Paduka Yong, members and guests.

Wine Appreciation Lesson 101

The finer points of appreciating wine drinking is to know what wine you are drinking and what enhances the flavour or complement the palate. Good Red wine which has maturing / ageing properties, need to be uncorked to “breath” or “open up” so that the flavor and bouquet are enhanced with oxidation.

Some wine is Semi-Dry (level of natural sugar content – lower alcohol levels) which is naturally “sweeter” and some are dry (with low sugar content with higher alcohol level of between 11.5{19eb38c1b83d5d29fbbb5fcafd2ea2075c90f1df4554789572ffea0ad4fd1559} to 14.5{19eb38c1b83d5d29fbbb5fcafd2ea2075c90f1df4554789572ffea0ad4fd1559}). Variety of wine are aplenty, for example, the most popular “Red” varietal is from the Cabernet Sauvignon grapes, pronounced as “Car ba neeh Saw vee nogh” and the most popular for “White” is Chardonnay, pronounced as “Char doh neeh

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Entertaining with Food & Wine

Robert provided tips to the group on the making of the famous Spanish Wine Cocktail – Sangria. This is an excellent starter drink that is cold and refreshing with a combination of Orange and Lemon juice mixed with a cocktail of Cognac and Red wine. The wine need not be a top of range Red but a decent semi-dry wine made from Tempranillo or the Grenache varietals will suffice.

Members get to try 7 different wines + SANGRIA – Welcome Drink….

Robert will show guests how to prepare this popular Spanish Starter Drink

Brand  Varietal (Country)

  1.  LOS RISCOS Chardonnay – White (Chile)

  2.  QUERCOILI   Reggiano Lumbrusco – White D.O.C.G (Italy)

  3.  REDWOOD PASS Pinot Noir – Red (Marlborough, N. Zealand)

  4.  BAJOZ Tempranillo – Red (Toro, Spain)

  5.  DULONG Merlot/ Cabernet Sauvignon – Red (Bordeaux, France)

  6.  TORO DE PIEDRA Cabernet Sauvignon Gran Reserva – Red (Chile)

  7.  PATRIZI Moscato d Asti – White D.O.C.G.(Italy)

• Wine “Finger-food” like Cheese, Carrot/Cucumber strips, Fish Toufu, Pizza, Toast with spread, Ayam Goreng & fruits served

• Briefing on wine information for each wine being sampled,, food & wine pairing tips & other useful wine appreciation tips for example Wine notes etc.

The Night’s Program – published earlier in the ERA Website

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As for food, Cheese and fruits are excellent with a variety of White wine while some seafood can be enhanced with sips of certain White varietals. Even the humble Fish Cake can go very well with a cold glass of Chardonnay. Roast meat with a bit of fat, pairs extremely well with stronger full bodied Reds like the Cabernet Sauvignon as well as Shiraz. The group had some lip smacking combinations during the session.

A Night of Networking Too

The group especially our President Datin Paduka Yong, while busy with wanting to learn more about the art of “Wining” and food pairing, did not miss the opportunity also promote ERA membership to the invited guests. Not only we may have a better appreciation of wine drinking, we should be able to bring more expertise from other fields to join ERA in the near future.

The night ended with the group also bring back bottles of wine which were bought at wholesale prices, back to be enjoyed with family and friends, together with the enhanced knowledge of “What’s your Wine?

It is crucial to note that the whole group enjoyed the drinks and finger food “responsibly” that night and all got home safe and sound.…

Article contributed by R.Lye

Attached photograph courtesy of Datin Paduka Yong

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