Friday’s food: Wine

His first miracle - water into wine

It is used in religious rituals, has been consumed for thousands of years, and you don’t make it – you craft it.

Wine is food…and as with any food, having enough is great – having too much is a mistake.

Just so you know, oenophiles are people who have an interest in things wine related.  Toss that tidbit out at your next dinner party.

“Exactly where wine was first made is still unclear.  It could have been anywhere in the vast region, stretching from North Africa to Central/South Asia, where wild grapes grow.  However, the first large-scale production of wine must have been in the region where grapes were first domesticated, southern Caucasus and the Near East.  Wild grapes grow in Georgia, northern Levant, coastal and southern Turkey, Northern Iran, and Armenia.  None of these areas can be definitively singled out yet, despite persistent suggestions that Georgia is the birthplace of wine.”
History of Wine

Regardless of wine’s birthplace, it did travel on to ancient Egypt, the Middle East, ancient Greece & China, medieval Europe and the New World.  Today it is enjoyed worldwide and is considered beneficial when consumed in moderate amounts (5 ounces daily for women and 10 ounces for men)

Resveratrol, a powerful antioxidant in red wine and grape juice is believed to lower levels of bad (LDL) cholesterol and is the suggested answer to the French Paradox.  This antioxidant is also available as a supplement since you’d need to drink a lot of wine to achieve the same benefit level as supplements.

…French paradox, the fact that the French, who don’t stint on eggs, butter, cream or foie gras, have less cardiovascular disease and fewer heart attacks than Americans.  The reason, some researchers suggest, is that the red wine the French drink with their meals contains resveratrol as well as another LDL-lowering compound called quercitin……theorizes that the reason the French suffer fewer heart attacks is that they take their main meal at noon and do not snack before dinner, which comes at least five hours later.”
The Nutrition Bible, William Morrow and Company, Inc., New York

Wine is generally divided into two broad categories – alcohol count determines calories – sugar levels to a lesser degree:
Table (red, white, rose) and sparkling wines which range from 9 – 14% alcohol
Fortified (sherry, port, madeira, malaga, marsala) which ranges from 14 -24% alcohol

Calorie counts for one ounce of various types:
Table: about 17-29
Sparkling: 21-42
Dessert: 35-52
Dry French Vermouth: 27
Sweet Italian Vermouth: 43

When used as a cooking ingredient, almost 100% of the alcohol is burned off in the heat and it has a synergistic effect – intensifying and fortifying flavors.  Click here for great recipes and cooking tips.  People which alcohol dependency problems should still be careful even if almost all the alcohol is cooked out.

Some Fort Worth (and area) wine events:

Wine Dinner – $150
March of Dimes Signature Chef’s Auction
Click here for ticket info
September 29, 2011

Light Catcher Winery & Bistro – $10 at the door
Jazz Sunday Sept 18th
Gypsy Jazz Stylings à la Django Reinhardt & Stephane Grappelli
by Kim Platko, Mark Menikos and co.
6925 Confederate Park Road, Fort Worth, 817. 237. 2626

25th Anniversary Grapefest
Grapevine, Texas
September 15, 16, 17, 18

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Links are provided so that you may investigate for yourself and draw your own conclusions.

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