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275 Cards in this Set

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What are the 6 levels of dryness for French Champagne?
1. Extra (or Ultra) Brut: very, very dry
2. Brut: very dry
3. Extra Sec: dry
4. Sec: slightly sweet
5. Demi-sec: sweet
6. Doux: very sweet
What is added to Champagne during bottling to adjust its sweetness?
Called a dosage, a mixture of sugar syrup and wine or brandy (called "liqueur d'expedition") is added right before final bottling.
What are the nine steps in the manufacture of Champagne as outlined in stained glass at the famous French cathedral of Reims?
1. Vendange: harvesting
2. Collage: clarifying
3. Recoupage: blending
4. Remuage: riddling
5. Dosage: adding the "liqueur d'expedition"
6. Bouchage: corking
7. Ficellage: attaching the wire cage over the cork
8. Habillage: adding the label and foil
9. Emballage: packing the wine in wooden cases
What famous absurdist author called his final book "a nice glass of Champagne at the end of a life"?
Kurt Vonnegut's last book, "A Man Without a Country," was published in 2005. It became a best seller, prompting Vonnegut's remark. He died in 2007.
If your are drinking an Amarone, what kind of wine are you drinking?
An Italian wine made primarily from the Corvina grape. Sometimes Rondinella and Molinara grapes are also used. The grapes for Amarone go through an unusual drying process that produces a unique flavor.
What is Barolo?
Sometimes referred to as "The King of Italian Wines," Barolo is made from the Nebbiolo grape.
Match the sparkling wine with the country where it is made:
a) Sekt 1) France
b) Cava 2) Germany
c) Spumante 3) Spain
d) Vin mousseux 4) Italy
a) 2. Sekt is a German sparkling wine usually made from Reisling.
b) 3. Spanish sparkling wines are called Cava.
c) 4. Italy's best known sparkling wine is Asti Spumante, made from Muscat.
d) 1. Vin mousseux is sparkling wine made in France outside of the Champagne region.
What kind of grape is Barbaresco made from?
Italian Barbaresco, like Bartolo, is made from the Nebbiolo grape.
What kind of wine is Brunello?
Brunello, or "the little dark one," is a clone of the Sangiovese Grosso grape; it is used to make some of Italy's best wines.
Name the twenty wine regions of Italy.
1. Abruzzi
2. Apulia
3. Basilicata
4. Calabria
5. Campania
6. Emilia-Romagna
7. Friuli-Venezia Giulia
8. Latium
9. Liguria
10. Lombardy
11. Marches
12. Molise
13. Piedmont
14. Sardinia
15. Sicily
16. Trentino-Alto Adige
17. Tuscany
18. Umbria
19. Valle d'Aosta
20. Veneto
What kind of wine is the classic accompaniment to foie gras?
a) Pinot Noir
b) Sauternes
c) Champagne
d) Chardonnay
(b). Rich, fatty foie gras is often paired with the sweet, rich taste of Sauternes. It's no wonder that gout was a common problem with French royalty!
Is Portugal's famous fortified wine really Portuguese?
Port was invented by British merchants who fortified local Portuguese wines by adding brandy to ensure that the wine would not spoil. Warres, a British company, opened the first Port house in the city of Oporto in 1670.
What are the six appellations of Cognac?
Cognac may legally only be distilled only from wine made in the following six regions:
1. Grande Champagne
2. Petite Champagne
3. Borderies
4. Fins Bois
5. Bons Bois
6. Bois Ordinaires
What grape is made into the wine that, once distilled and aged, becomes Cognac?
Cognac is distilled from wine made primarily from the Trebbiano grape, also known as Ugni Blanc.
What is Armagnac?
Armagnac is a Frency brandy distilled in the Armagnac region a little Southeast of Bordeaux. It is distilled once in a special continuous still and then aged in black oak.
What are the 3 regions of Armagnac?
1. Bas-Armagnac
2. Tenareze
3. Haut-Armagnac
Which of the following is not an aperitif?
a) Sherry
b) Vermouth
c) Champagne
d) Port
(d). Aperitifs are light alcoholic beverages consumed before a meal to stimulate the appetite. Port is a rich, high-alcohol wine that would do more to deaden one's taste buds than to awaken them.
What is ZAP?
The acronym for "Zinfandel Advocates and Producers." ZAP is an educational society formed in 1991 to promote Zinfandel in all of its incarnations. The group has about 7,000 members in the U.S. and abroad.
What is the significant about Heritage Vineyard in Oakville, CA?
This vineyard covers a little over one acre within the Univ. of CA, Davis, Oakville Research Station in the Napa Valley. The vineyard, planted with cuttings from all over California, contains over 90 different Zinfandel selections from vines averaging over 80 years of age. Some research and some winemaking are done on the site.
What is the grape that produces the most wine in both France and Italy?
In France, Trebbiano (called Ugni Blanc or St. Emilion) accounts for most of the wine used to produce brandy. In its native Italy, it is widely blended into both white and red wines. In fact, it is difficult to find an Italian white that doesn't include some Trebbiano.
What is Spain's most widely planted grape?
Spain's native Airen grape accounts for 30% of all grapes grown in that country. Because of an unusually low vine density, massive acreage is necessary. Airen vineyards cover more area than any other grape variety in the world. The wine tends to be low in quality, and much of it is used in the making of Spanish brandy.
What does the "Sack" in Dry Sack Sherry mean?
"Sack" is a 16th century English corruption of the Spanish word "sacar," which means "to export." It was used in the time of Queen Elizabeth I for Sherry wines from the Canary Islands and Malaga.
Are Syrah and Petite Syrah related?
Yes. Thanks to DNA testing it is now known that Petite Syrah (sometimes Petite Syrah) is a cross between the classic Rhone varietal Syrah and the lesser grape Peloursin; Petite Syrah was known as Durif in the Rhone Valley, where it is now all but extinct.
Does a screw-top bottle automatically denote a cheap wine?
No. The wine industry is moving more and more toward screw-top closures. They are cheaper, create a better seal, and greatly reduce the possibility of soilage. However, winemakers who use the screw-top must employ more careful production procedures in order to avoid sulfur contamination. Luckily, this occurs far less frequently than cork taint and often can be remedied by the consumer through decanting or swirling wine in the glass.
What drink was the Duke of Edinburgh referring to when he spoke the following words? "Champagne and orange juice is a great drink. The orange improves the Champagne. The Champagne definitely improves the orange."
Prince Philip, husband of Queen Elizabeth II, was referring to the Mimosa.
What is the primary difference between sparkling rose and still rose?
Sparkling rose is usually a white wine to which is added a little bit of still red wine. Still rose is colored by allowing the juice pressed from red grapes (which is more or less colorless) to remain in contact with the grape skins (which are dark red) for a spell.
What is the difference between the white wines Albarino and Vinho Verde?
Albarino is made in Spain. Vinho Verde is made in Portugal. Both are made, using similar vinification practices, from the Albarino grape.
What is a "bodega"?
"Bodega" is the Spanish word for "winery." It has also come to refer to a wine warehouse.
What varietal is Condrieu made from?
Condrieu, one of the Rhone's great white wines, is 100% Viognier.
What does "Chateauneuf du Pape" signify?
It means "new palace of the Pope" and refers to the time when Avignon and not Rome was the home of papacy. The red wines from that region in the South of France are made primarily from Grenache, Mourvedre, and Syrah.
What is Spain's most widely planted grape?
Spain's native Airen grape accounts for 30% of all grapes grown in that country. Because of an unusually low vine density, massive acreage is necessary. Airen vineyards cover more area than any other grape variety in the world. The wine tends to be low in quality, and much of it is used in the making of Spanish brandy.
What does the "Sack" in Dry Sack Sherry mean?
"Sack" is a 16th century English corruption of the Spanish word "sacar," which means "to export." It was used in the time of Queen Elizabeth I for Sherry wines from the Canary Islands and Malaga.
Are Syrah and Petite Syrah related?
Yes. Thanks to DNA testing it is now known that Petite Syrah (sometimes Petite Syrah) is a cross between the classic Rhone varietal Syrah and the lesser grape Peloursin; Petite Syrah was known as Durif in the Rhone Valley, where it is now all but extinct.
Does a screw-top bottle automatically denote a cheap wine?
No. The wine industry is moving more and more toward screw-top closures. They are cheaper, create a better seal, and greatly reduce the possibility of soilage. However, winemakers who use the screw-top must employ more careful production procedures in order to avoid sulfur contamination. Luckily, this occurs far less frequently than cork taint and often can be remedied by the consumer through decanting or swirling wine in the glass.
What drink was the Duke of Edinburgh referring to when he spoke the following words? "Champagne and orange juice is a great drink. The orange improves the Champagne. The Champagne definitely improves the orange."
Prince Philip, husband of Queen Elizabeth II, was referring to the Mimosa.
What is the primary difference between sparkling rose and still rose?
Sparkling rose is usually a white wine to which is added a little bit of still red wine. Still rose is colored by allowing the juice pressed from red grapes (which is more or less colorless) to remain in contact with the grape skins (which are dark red) for a spell.
What is the difference between the white wines Albarino and Vinho Verde?
Albarino is made in Spain. Vinho Verde is made in Portugal. Both are made, using similar vinification practices, from the Albarino grape.
What is a "bodega"?
"Bodega" is the Spanish word for "winery." It has also come to refer to a wine warehouse.
What varietal is Condrieu made from?
Condrieu, one of the Rhone's great white wines, is 100% Viognier.
What does "Chateauneuf du Pape" signify?
It means "new palace of the Pope" and refers to the time when Avignon and not Rome was the home of papacy. The red wines from that region in the South of France are made primarily from Grenache, Mourvedre, and Syrah.
What are the two types of Sherry?
Fino and Olorosso, which represent two different ways to make Sherry. All other styles are derivatives of these two.
Are wine grapes suitable for eating?
Yes. Wine grapes are actually quite tasty, though some varieties can be quite small and all varieties have seeds.
Viticulture, viniculture--what is the difference?
Viticulture = study of grapes and grapevines.
Viniculture = study of wine.
What is a Super Tuscan?
Red wine made from a blend of traditional Chianti grapes (Sangiovese, Canioli, Malvasia, Trebbiano) with traditional Bordeaux grapes (mostly from Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot). The combination creates a richer, denser, more tannic wine.
You are serving smoked salmon for dinner. Which wine will probably best complement it?
a) Sauvignon Blanc
b) Pinot Grigio
c) Pinot Noir
d) Riesling
(c) The white wines listed are too light to stand up to the fish's smoky flavor. The best choice is the one red wine from the list, Pinot Noir.
What are the two varietals used to make most white Bordeaux wines?
Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon.
What is the "wine lake" of Europe?
This term refers to the vast amount of low-quality wines produced in Europe that don't fit into the standard categories.
What does the term "blanc de blancs" mean?
The phrase literally means "white from whites," a white wine made from white grapes. When applied to Champagne, it means that the wine is 100% Chardonnay.
What kind of wine is Chianti?
Chianti, an Italian region known for its reds, produces a wine made from Sangiovese, Canaioli, Malvasia, and Trebbiano. The wine must contain a minimum of 75% Sangiovese.
What is Chablis?
Chablis is a village in France known for producing 100% Chardonnay wines that have very little or no oak. As a result, they are quite lean and austere. When the term Chablis is applied to wines from elsewhere it usually indicates low-quality bulk wine.
What does the term "blanc de noirs" mean?
"White from blacks" indicates that the wine in question--typically a Champagne--was made from red grapes, either Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, or a combination of the two.
Which was the first major winery to open in the Napa Valley after the repeal of Prohibition?
Robert Mondavi opened his winery in Oakville in 1966, over thirty years after the ratification of the 21st Amendment.
What does the French term "cuvee" mean?
From the word "cuve," which means "vat," "cuvee" means a blend of different wines--blending often took place in large vats in the past. A cuvee is often made by combining wines from different areas or wines from different years.
Who is known as the "Father of California Wine" and is credited with planting the first California vineyard?
Father Junipero Serra planted the first vineyard at Mission San Diego de Alcala. The first of California's Jesuit missions, it gave its name to the city of San Diego.
What was significant about the Champagne served at the baptism of Clovis I, the first French king, in 496?
It was probably red wine and contained no bubbles. It would be a thousand year's before bubbles would come to be seen as desirable in Champagne's famous white wine.
Is sake a beer or a wine?
Technically sake is brewed like a beer. However it is considered a class 6 wine (wine made from "other agricultural products") by the US Tax and Trade Bureau.
Name the eight (8) Middle Eastern personalities who lend their names to big wine bottles.
1) Jeroboam: sparkling wine and Burgundian wine jeroboams are 3 liters (4 standard bottles); in Bordeaux they are 4.5 liters (6 bottles).
2) Methuselah: 6 ltrs. (8 bottles)
3) Salmanazar: 9 ltrs. (12 bottles or 1 case).
4) Balthazar: 12 ltrs. (16 bottles)
5) Nebuchadnezzar: 15 ltrs. (20 bottles).
6) Melchior: 18 ltrs. (24 bottles)
7) Solomon: 25 ltrs. (33.3 bottles)
8) Melchizedek: 30 ltrs. (40 bottles)
As you are finishing your white wine you notice what looks like tiny crystal shards in the bottom of your glass. What are they and do they mean that the wine is bad?
They are called tartrates (cream of tartar or potassium bitartrate) and appear in some white wines and many red wines. In red wines they are usually darkened by the wine and considered sediment. In white wines they are clear and completely harmless--the only impact that they have is visual. The can be removed by cold stabilization.
What is "sabering?"
Sabering is the dramatic removal of the top of a bottle of Champagne with a saber. If the drip ring is struck hard enough, the pressure of the bubbles will blow the top clean off. It is rarely performed, possibly due to the influence of insurance adjustors everywhere.
What winemaker said about oak and wine, "If you want oak, chew on a plank?"
California winemaker Louis M. Martini.
Canada's climate makes it the world's largest producer of this kind of wine. What is it and where did it originate?
Icewine (or Eiswein) originated in 1794 near the city of Wurzburg, in Bavaria (now part of Germany). It was discovered that if grapes left to freeze on the vine were pressed, they produced delicious sweet dessert wines. Since the sugars in the grapes don't freeze, while the water does, the resultant juice is heavily concentrated, much like a botrytised wine or a wine made from partially dried fruit. With winters consistently colder than those in Europe, Canada has been able to produce larger volumes of naturally frozen grapes--and hence more icewine--than Germany. Hainle Vineyards made the first commercially available Canadian icewine in 1978.
Who said, "If coolness is impractical, steady warmth will do," and what was he talking about?
The famous wine writer Hugh Johnson provided that advice in "The World Atlas of Wine," and he was referring to storing wine.
What are wine futures?
Wine futures are payments made in advance of a wine's release. Many highly sought-after wines are hard to come by and take several years to make. Buying a future guarantees you the right to the wine when it is finally finished and released. It is a bit like playing the stock market: sometimes vintages get rave reviews, driving up the price of the wine at release, while at other times problems cause the wine to be worth less.
You get a headache after drinking a glass of red wine. Are you allergic to the sulfites in the wine?
Probably not. Sulfites occur naturally in all wine. Many winemakers add additional sulfites to wine to help it age. About one person in 1 million is seriously allergic to sulfites, and if you did suffer from this condition you wouldn't get a headache; other symptoms would predominate. You would also react to bacon, white wine, and even orange juice from concentrate. Your headache might be the result of an allergy or reaction to histamines, which are common in red wine.
What are sulfites?
Sulfur dioxide has been used as a food preservative for centuries. Adding controlled amounts, in a process known as sulfiting, continues today. Wine in the US must be labeled "contains sulfites" if the bottle contains between 10 and 350 ppm. Wines without added sulfites tend to spoil quickly.
What does "saigne" mean?
The past participle of the French verb "saigner," which means "to bleed," it refers to a method of making rose wines. Dark-skinned grapes are pressed and left in a stainless-steel vat. A small amount of juice is then drained off, or "bled," to make rose, while the remaining juice stays in contact with the skins a bit longer, to make red wine.
What country--in stark contrast to its tiny size--has long been the largest per-capita consumer of wine?
The people of Luxembourg consume a per-capita average of 16.7 gallons of wine annually.
Since oak wine barrels are expensive, wineries have come up with cheaper ways to produce oaky tasting wine. What are they?
Some winemakers stir woodchips or sawdust into wine to impart that highly sought-after trait. They won't hurt you but they don't quite produce the same effect.
If you are allergic to eggs, should you be concerned about drinking wine?
Yes. Some wines are fined or filtered with egg whites. The egg whites absorb undesirable particles in the wine and then are removed. Unfortunately, depending on your sensitivity, there might be enough residue in the wine to trigger a reaction.
If a wine label lists the vintage date as 2000, does that mean the grapes were picked that year, the wine was made that year, or the wine was bottled that year?
A vintage refers to the year that the grapes were harvested. Wine is often aged for several years in oak barrels before it is bottled. Usually wine is allowed to ferment fairly quickly, but since grapes are picked in late fall it is possible that the wine wouldn't actually be made until the following year.
Is the Carneros region in Napa County or in the neighboring Sonoma County?
The Carneros AVA is immediately north of San Pablo Bay and contains wineries in both Napa County and Sonoma County.
Your newly opened wine smells bad. Really bad, like cooked cabbage or rotten eggs or perhaps even sewer gas. What can you do to fix this problem quickly?
The smells indicate the presence of too much hydrogen sulfide, an inorganic compound containing sulfur. Luckily it is easily remedied. Drop a clean copper penny--or a copper coin from any nation--into the wine. The penny's copper plating will react with the hydrogen sulfide, quickly turning it into odorless copper sulfide. If you are unsure where your penny has been, a silver spoon will also do the trick, turning it into silver sulfide instead.
Has blood ever been used in the manufacture of wine?
Yes. Dried ox blood was once used as a flinting, or clarifying, agent in wine. The blood would attract undesirable particulate matter and sink to the bottom of the vat, where it could be separated from the wine. The EEC banned the use of ox blood in 1997, partly in response to fears over the spread of mad cow disease.
Which of the following did the French monk Dom Perignon actually do?
a) Invented Champagne.
b) Said, "Come quickly! I am tasting stars!"
c) Invented better bottle and cork system for sparkling wine.
d) Promoted Champagne and made it more popular.
e) All of the above.
(c) Sparkling Champagne has been around long before the venerable dom. In fact, he thought of the bubbles as a flaw and did much to try to eliminate them. As for the quotation, it is almost surely a marketing ploy of the early 19th century.
Is Madeira a wine or a place?
Both. It is a fortified wine made on the islands of Madeira, located off the coast of northwest Africa and colonized by Portugal.
What are the four types of Madeira?
From lightest to heaviest they are:
Sercial
Verdelho
Boal
Malmsey
What Champagne house produces Dom Perignon?
Moet et Chandon produces Dom Perignon.
Riddle me this: what is riddling, in the world of wine?
Riddling is a process of slowly turning Champagne bottles so that the dead yeast cells in each gradually concentrate in the neck, where they can easily be removed. Madame Clicquot pioneered this process.
Name the other famous rice wine of Japan.
Mirin
What are the three towns that make up Spain's famous Sherry Triangle?
The Sherry Triangle is the wine-growing region in the southwestern corner of Australia. The towns that define the three corners are:
Jerez de la Frontera
Sanlucar de Barrameda
El Puerto de Santa Maria
Is Grande Champagne Cognac made with grapes from the Champagne region?
No. Grande Champagne is a region in the Cognac district and has nothing to do with the sparkling wine.
Who built the first winery in the Napa Valley?
Charles Krug, a Prussian immigrant, became the first commercial vintner in the Napa Valley when he built his first winery there in 1861.
Why did Prohibition lead to an increase in American consumption of wine?
In 1917 the 18th Amendment banned the commercial production and sale of alcohol in the US. The Volstead Act, ratified in 1919, softened some of the provisions of the amendment. Doctors could prescribe alcohol and it could also be consumed for religious purposes. As an added bonus, the head of a household could produce 200 gallons of wine a year for personal use. As a result, wine consumption increased dramatically, making it for the first time more popular than beer and spirits.
Which of these is the unquestioned ancestor of California Zinfandel?
a) Primitivo (Italy)
b) Crljenak Kastelanski (Croatia)
c) Zinfandel (native to California)
d) Plavic Mali (Dalmatia)
(b) It has been clearly established, through DNA testing, that Zinfandel is identical to Crljenak Kastelanski, an obscure varietal from Croatia.
Your friend just ordered a bottle of Vouvray. What kind of wine will you be drinking?
Vouvray is an appellation in the middle of France's Loire Valley. There the Chenin Blanc grape is used to make white wines that range from bone dry to very sweet.
What wine favored by hip-hop artists was first bottled at the behest of a Russian czar?
Alexander II (1818-1881) was unhappy that his guests couldn't see that the Champagne he served them was made especially for him: the labels on the classic dark green bottles were concealed by the towels they were wrapped in for pouring. He requested that a special leaded crystal bottle be made for his favorite Champagne--the colorless glass would be unmistakable, even if his guests glimpsed only the bottle's lip. Alas, today there are several producers that use clear glass bottles, but there is still only one Cristal.
Napolean is reported to have said, "I drink Champagne when I win, to celebrate...and I drink Champagne when I lose, to console myself." What was his favorite Champagne?
Napolean Bonaparte was especially fond of Jean-Remy Moets sparkling wine. So much so that one of his last acts as emperor of the French was to pin his own Legion of Honor cross on Moet. This happened at a special house built on the winery's grounds for the emperor.
What is the most planted red varietal in France's Bordeaux region?
Merlot covers almost twice as much acreage as Cabernet Sauvignon in Bordeaux.
In the classic French dish coq au vin, what kind of wine is used to cook the rooster?
Red wine, usually Burgundy (i.e., Pinot Noir).
In the classic Italian dessert tiramisu, which means "pull me up!" (as in, to Heaven), what fortified wine is used to get you there?
This dessert employs Marsala, an Italian wine, as well as liberal doses of rum, chocolate, and espresso. Heaven indeed!
Your friend invites you to a dinner party. She needs wine to cook the main dish of boeuf bourguignon. What kind of wine are you going to be bringing?
"Boeuf bourguignon" means "beef prepared in the Burgundian way." The red wine you will need to bring is none other than red Burgundy--Pinot Noir.
What is important to remember about your mouth when you smell wine?
Your sense of smell is connected to your sense of taste. Therefore it is important to keep your mouth open slightly when smelling wine.
What, according to the Court of Master Sommeliers, are the three (3) keys to identifying a wine?
Color, smell, and taste, are in combination, a wine's fingerprints.
Someone asks you to get a bottle of Chinon, but the local store only carries American wines. What kind of wine will you choose?
Chinon is a French village known for its medieval fortress and its light, fruity wines made from Cabernet Franc. Your best bet would be a wine made with that grape.
What is Austria's most widely grown white grape?
Gruner Veltliner
When is a Riesling not Riesling?
When it's Gray (or Grey) Riesling. This name is mistakenly given to Trousseau Gris, which is no relative of Riesling.
Is there really a wine called "Milk of the Holy Virgin"?
Actually, it is called Liebfraumilch, or "Milk of the Beloved Lady," a reference to the Virgin Mary. A sweet German wine made from several varieties of grapes, Liebfraumilch is Germany's most exported wine.
What grape is used to make the classic French Loire Valley wine, Savennieres?
Chenin Blanc. Due to the grape's high acidity, these wines can and should be aged for a considerable period of time.
Cote d'Or, Cotes du Rhone, Cote Rotie. What does "Cote" mean? Why is it so significant to grapes?
The French word "cote" means "slope." Grapevines need lots of water and are, by nature, climbing plants. Therefore, they tend to grow wild on slopes above water, most often rivers. That is why many wines take their name from a nearby valley or river.
What is a Claret?
Claret is a British term that refers to red wine from Bordeaux. It has no legal definition.
Trying to find a way to prevent wine and beer from spoiling, a French scientist ended up most famous for his contribution to the dairy industry. Name the scientist.
Louis Pasteur thought he could keep wine and beer from spoiling if he heated them to high enough temperatures to kill harmful bacteria. Unfortunately this process also kills the helpful bacteria that make wine change character as it ages. Ultimately this process became most beneficial to preserving milk; it is known as pasteurization.
There are two main roads that run north to south in California's Napa Valley. One is Highway 29; what is the other?
In the middle of the 19th century, wagons used to transport mercury (then called quicksilver) from mines in Napa County to the goldfields. In 1921 their route was officially named the Silverado Trail. Today it is studded with dozens of wineries and is a popular tourist destination.
When Leif Eriksson spent the winter in North America, sometime around AD 1000, he named the spot where he camped Vinland after the grapes growing there. What variety of grapevine did he most likely see?
Vitus labrusca is the scientific name of a native N.A. grape; the best-known cultivar is the Concord grape. It is sometime used to make wine.
"No nation is drunken where wine is cheap; and none sober; where the dearness of wine substitutes ardent spirits as the common beverage." Who said that?
Thomas Jefferson was an early proponent of winemaking in the fledgling U.S.
If my wine label says "15.5% alcohol," does that mean the contents of the bottle are actually 15.5% alcohol?
Winemakers are given a 1.5% leeway in labeling. This means that the wine could be 17% (on a par with Port) or 14%.
Who made the first wine in North America?
Records indicate the French Huguenots made a wine from the Muscadine grape (also known as the Scuppernong) in a Florida settlement in 1564.
What do the words "table wine" signify on an American wine label?
They mean the wine has an alcohol content of between 7 and 14 percent. The designation is not an indicator of quality, merely of alcohol content.
What does the term "Tafelwein" (table wine) signify in Germany and Austria?
That the wine is of the lowest quality.
Arrange the following four French wine designations in order of quality, starting with the best:
a) Vin de Table
b) Vin Delimite de Qualite Superieure
c) Appellation d'Origine Controlee
d) Vin de Pays
1. c) Appellation d'Origine Controlee
2. b) Vin Delimite de Qualite Superieure
3. d) Vin de Pays
4. a) Vin de Table
Why was Thomas Volney Munson, a native of Illinois who moved to Texas in 1876, considered a hero to the French wine industry in the 1880's?
Munson shipped thousands of phylloxera-resistent rootstocks to French winemakers, helping them recover from the plant louse epidemic of the second half of the 19th century. The French government named him Chevalier du Merite Agricole of the French Legion of Honor for his work.
Which of the following characteristics is an unoaked Chardonnay NOT LIKELY to exhibit?
a) High acidity
b) Vanilla or caramel flavors
c) Minerality
d) Tropical fruit flavors
b) Aging in oak lends the flavors of caramel and vanilla to the wine.
What are the three great waterways of France's Bordeaux region?
Known in Roman times as Burdigala, Bordeaux is watered by the Gironde, a tidal estuary fed by the Dordogne and Garonne rivers.
Many German Rieslings are assigned a "pradikat" (distinction) based on when the grapes were harvested. List the following categories in order from sweetest to driest:
a) Kabinett
b) Beerenauslese
c) Eiswein
d) Auslese
e) Spatlese
f) Trockenbeerenauslese
f) Trockenbeerenauslese (35% sugar)
c) Eiswein (26-30% sugar)
b) Beerenauslese (26-30% sugar)
d) Auslese (20-25% sugar)
e) Spatlese (19-23% sugar)
a) Kabinett (17-21% sugar)
When tasting a wine, you detect a slight hint of petroleum. What kind of wine does this usually signify?
Taste of petroleum usually indicates a Riesling and is not considered a flaw unless it is overpowering.
In the US, sweet wine is often seen as inferior. What nation views sweetness as a plus, with the desirability, scarcity, and cost of its wines increasing with their residual sugar content?
Germany grades its wines according to the "Qualitatswein mit Pradikat" system; the more residual sugar (the sweeter the wine), the higher the price of the wine.
What does the Portuguese word "quinta" mean?
It means "farm," but in wine contexts it means "vineyard" or "estate."
What process invented by the French chemist Jean-Antoine Chaptal is legal in France and Germany but illegal in Italy and California?
In chaptalization, grape juice or sugar is added to wine during fermentation, allowing the wine to develop higher alcohol levels and thus better balance. It is usually employed with underripe grapes, whose sugar content is low. It is legal in some parts of the US.
What country are Stellenbosch wines from?
This growing region is located in S. Africa and is known for its Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Shiraz, Pinotage, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, and Sauvignon Blanc.
What is Shiraz?
"Shiraz" is the Australian name for the grape called "Syrah" in France. It has been cultivated down under since the 1830s. The name "Shiraz" is sometimes used for Syrah in other countries to suggest that the wine is Australian in style.
What is Pinotage?
Pinotage is a cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsault. It is grown mainly in S. Africa, although some is grown in Australia and California.
If a French red wine is labeled "Bourgogne" is it always going to be Pinot Noir?
No, the Beaujolais region is located in Burgundy and the primary red grape grown there is Gamay.
What is the primary grape used in the production of the massive Spanish red, Rioja?
Tempranillo.
Often New Zealand and Australian wines are lumped together in the same category. What is this inaccurate?
Australia and New Zealand are about 1,000 miles apart and are separate countries with different rules governing winemaking. Lumping them together is akin to putting all the wines in Western Europe in one category because of the geographic proximity.
What does the term "solera" mean when applied to fortified wines?
It refers to a process of mixing older wines with younger ones so that the finished product exhibits the character of both. If a bottle has a vintage date and "solera" on the bottle, it means that the oldest wine in the blend--very little, in actual practice--is from that vintage date. A similar process is used in making some brandies.
The waiter suggested a Sancerre with your raw oysters. What kind of wine is this and does it go with oysters?
Sancerre is a region in France that produces mainly flinty, minerally wines made from the Sauvignon Blanc grape. Sancerre and oysters is a classic pairing.
What author and wine columnist made the following comment about pairing wine with food? "If someone else is buying Chateau Petrus or Chateau d'Yquem, by all means drink as much of it as you can, no matter what the hell you're eating. Give the food to the dog."
Jay McInerney, author of "Bright Lights, Big City," wrote that in his 2000 book "Bacchus and Me: Adventures in the Wine Cellar."
What are the grapes used in the production of Chateau Petrus and Chateau d'Yquem?
Petrus is from the Bordeaux region of France and is considered one of the region's best wines; it is made exclusively from Merlot grapes. Chateau d'Yquem is a classic sweet wine made in the Sauternes region from botrytised Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon grapes. Both wines are incredibly expensive.
In the novel "Hannibal," cannibal Hannibal Lecter purchases a bottle of wine for Clarice Starling's 33rd birthday. What is it?
A bottle of Chateau d'Yquem bottled in the year of her birth.
In the 1991 film "The Silence of the Lambs," Hannibal Lecter says of a census taker, "I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti." In the book version, he claims that he ate human liver with "a big Amarone." Which wine would probably go best with liver?
Amarone is a massive red wine that would probably overpower most liver dishes. Of the two, a lighter Chianti would probably work best.
What two vegetables are best avoided when pairing food with wine?
Asparagus contains phosphorous and mercaptan; in combination with alcohol, these can produce a taste reminiscent of sewage. Artichokes contain an acid called cynarin, which causes wine to taste sweet.
Is plum wine (umeshu) a wine or something else?
Most plum wine is Japanese liqueur made from a combination of unripe plums (called "ume"), sugar, and "shochu" (a distilled alcohol) or sake.
Match each of the following famous French wine regions with the quadrant of the country where it is found.
a) Loire Valley
b) Bordeaux
c) Alsace
d) Cotes du Rhone

1) SW
2) NW
3) SE
4) NE
a) 2). The Loire Valley wine region lies along the lower Loire River which ends at the Atlantic in the NW.
b) 1). Bordeaux is on France's SW coast.
c) 4). Alsace is in the NE, across the border from Germany.
d) 3). The Cotes du Rhone region lies along the Rhone River, which ends at the Mediterranean in the SE.
What are the Allier, Limousin, Nevers, Troncais, and Vosges?
They are the French forests that provide much of the oak used in the production of wine barrels.
What is the world's oldest bottle of wine?
That depends on your definition of "wine." A Roman-style bottle still containing its original contents was found in 1867 in a vineyard near the town of Speyer in Germany. Probably undrinkable, the wine dates from approximately AD 325. Far older are alcoholic artifacts from Iran (7,000 years old); a grape-based wine mixed with tree resin) and China (9,000 years old: an alcohol made from rice and millet).
What makes a wine kosher?
Kosher wines must be made according to rabbinical law, the process must be presided over by a rabbi, and the wine must be handled only by workers who are Orthodox Jews. Most Kosher wines are made with Concord grapes and so are quite sweet.
What is a "corked" wine?
A "corked" wine is one coming from a bottle with a tainted cork that has given rise to the compound 2,4,6-trichloroanisole, which tastes like wet cardboard. Though there are many degrees of corkiness, the compound can be detected in humans in as few as 30 ppm. Many winemakers concede that up to 5% of wines with natural corks are affected.
Banyuls looks like Port, has about the same alcohol content, and tastes similar. It's not Port, but what is it?
Banyuls is a fortified French wine made on the southern border of France close to the Pyrenees mountains. Made from at least 50% Grenache grapes, it ranges from dry to sweet--but all Banyuls must have an alcohol content of at least 15%.
Can you bring your own wine to a restaurant?
If local laws omit, some restaurants may allow this. Restaurants are not obligated to do so and many charge a "corkage" fee. The fee may be whimsically adjusted, so it is best to ask about it in advance.
Why might buying wine at an auction be risky?
a) Wine labels can be forged.
b) Older wines are fragile and you never know how the wine was stored.
c) It might be years before you open the bottle and by then it will be too late to recoup your loss.
d) All of the above.
d) All of the above. Even if your dealing with a reputable company, it is risky to purchase wine at an auction. It only takes about 20 minutes of high heat to destroy a wine (or one hot afternoon in the trunk of a car on the way home from the winery). If you are buying an older wine, you need to be sure that at no point in its entire history was it subjected to extremes of cold or heat. There is also a lot of money to be made on fakes, so when it comes to wine it is really caveat emptor.
What was the best-selling wine in the US at the beginning of Prohibition?
North Carolina's Virginia Dare wine, made from the native Scuppernong grape, survived Prohibition by lowering its alcohol level.
Name the three appellations on New York's Long Island that encompass nearly 750,000 acres of grapes.
1) North Fork of Long Island AVA.
2) The Hamptons of Long Island AVA.
3) Long Island AVA.
How many states in the United States have at least one winery?
50. Every state has at least one winery, including Alaska and Hawaii.
On average, how many pounds of grapes does it take to make a bottle of wine?
It takes about 2.8 lb. of grapes to make one 750 mL bottle of wine.
How many glasses of wine are in a bottle of wine?
It depends on the size of your glass. A typical bottle contains 750 mL or 25.4 fl. oz. A 4-ounce glass yields about six servings per bottle; a 5-ounce glass yields five servings; a 6-ounce glass yields four servings. Keep this in mind when comparing wine prices at various restaurants.
Arrange the following wines in order of caloric content, starting with the highest amount of calories:
a) Dry Champagne
b) Chianti
c) Cabernet Sauvignon
d) White Zinfandel
a) Dry Champagne (105 calories).
b) Chianti (100 calories).
c) Cabernet Sauvignon (90 calories).
d) White Zinfandel (80 calories).

These estimates are based on a 4-ounce serving.
What is the translation of "Borrado das Moscas," the name of a Portuguese white wine?
A polite translation would be "fly droppings." It is usually made into sparkling wine.
Who said, "No poem was ever written by a drinker of water"?
It was said by the Roman poet and satirist Horace (63 BC-8 BC).
What five things must be listed on an American wine label?
1. Who made it (vintner).
2. Where it was grown.
3. What sort of wine it is (red, white, rose, sparkling).
4. The volume of the bottle.
5. The alcohol percentage.
You are given a bottle of red Sancerre. What kind of grape is it made from?
It is made from Pinot Noir.
What can you tell about a wine that is labeled "reserve," "special reserve," or "select"?
Nothing: these categories are not legally defined. Some wineries make only reserve wines.
What is confusing about the term "premier cru" as it's used in Burgundy and Bordeaux?
"Premier cru" indicates the best quality in Bordeaux; in Burgundy it is second to "grand cru."
What white wine did oenophile and Francophile Thomas Jefferson anoint in 1787 as "the finest of white wine"?
Jefferson said this about the white wine of Hermitage, which is made from Marsanne and Roussane grapes in the northern part of the Rhone region, near Lyons.
What pertinent information is often left off Italian and French wine labels?
What type of grape the wine is made from. European winemakers assume a certain amount of savvy on the part of their consumers.
The Bordeaux region is bisected by the Gironde Estuary. The left bank is primarily known for one variety of grape and the right bank is known for another. What are they?
The gravelly left bank is known for producing wines in which Cabernet Sauvignon dominates. The heavy clay soil of the right bank is known for producing fabulous wines made primarily from the Merlot grape.
Put the regions in order according to total acreage of vineyards planted:
a) Loire
b) Burgundy
c) Alsace
d) Bordeaux
d) Bordeaux: 280,000 acres
b) Burgundy: 110,000 acres
a) Loire: 85,000 acres
c) Alsace: 33, 000 acres
What is important to note about a bottle labeled "British Wine"?
It means that the wine was made from a grape concentrate or must (grape juice that may contain seeds, pulp, and skins). "English Wine" refers to wine made from grapes grown in England.
What are wine "legs" and what do they indicate?
When wine is swirled in a glass, it may leave a sheen of wine on the sides of the glass that then forms into rivulets. These are called the legs, or tears. They usually indicate a wine with high alcohol content.
Which of the following famous chateaus was not named a first-growth in the original 1855 classification of Bordeaux's Medoc region?
a) Lafite Rothschild
b) Latour
c) Margaux
d) Haut-Brion
e) Mouton Rothschild
e) Mouton Rothschild was upgraded to first-growth status in 1973.
What is the legal definition of the term "old vines"?
The phrase "old vines" carries no legal definition anywhere in the world, so it means whatever the winery wants it to mean.
What grape variety is Oregon most known for?
Oregon's cool climate is perfect for Pinot Noir.
People often compare Oregon's Willamette Valley with the Napa Valley in California. Is this a fair comparison?
It is not a fair comparison. Oregon's Willamette Valley is enormous: covering nearly a third of the state, it stretches 175 miles and averages about 75 miles in width. The Napa Valley is about 5 miles wide at its widest and barely 30 miles long.
How do you pronounce the name of the famous French Champagne house Moet & Chandon?
a) Mow-ay ay shan-don
b) Mow-ay ay can-don
c) Mow-et ay shan-don
d) Mow-et ay can-don
c) Mow-et ay shan-don. Moet is pronounced with a hard "t."
Is oxidation undesirable in all wines?
No, some old-style white Spanish Riojas are deliberately oxidized.
Is grappa made from wine?
No, it is actually made from the residue of wine, namely, the grape skins and seeds left over after crushing. This "pomace" is fermented and then distilled into grappa.
What is a Kir?
A Kir is a mix of still white wine and Creme de Cassis, a black currant liqueur. It is named after Felix Kir, a French war hero who was also the mayor of Dijon, because of his penchant for serving the drink at official functions.
What is a Kir Royale?
It is a Kir made with Champagne instead of still white wine.
What is the unlikely companion of Champagne in the classic cocktail known as a Black Velvet?
Guinness, a dark beer, is combined with Champagne to create a unique sensory experience.
Put the following Napa Valley wineries in order by age, beginning with the oldest:
a) Schramsberg
b) Charles Krug
c) Beaulieu Vineyard (BV)
d) Beringer
e) Inglenook
b) Krug in 1861
a) Schramsberg in 1862
d) Beringer in 1876
e) Inglenook in 1879
f) BV in 1900
Devout Muslims are forbidden to drink alcohol. Does this mean they cannot drink vinegar made from wine?
Arguments persist, but some devout Muslims believe that they may consume vinegar made from wine if it has not been manipulated, at all, by man. Meaning the original wine (or malt beverage) may have nothing added to it and it may not be artificially heated or handled in order to produce the vinegar. If the wine has turned into vinegar all by itself, some believe it may be consumed. This, of course, virtually eliminates all mass-produced wine (and malt) vinegars.
If I cook with wine, will the alcohol burn off?
That depends upon the type of cooking. The USDA offers some startling statistics on what type of cooking retains the most alcohol. Flaming or flambeing something will allow up to 75% of the original alcohol to remain. Adding alcohol to a boiling liquid and removing it from the heat will allow 85% to remain. Pouring alcohol onto the top of a dish and baking it will preserve up to 45%. Simmering in an uncovered pan will reduce the alcohol content at a rate of about 10% every 30 minutes.
What is an AVA?
AVA stands for American Viticultural Area. This is a legal designation implemented in 1978 to identify American wines by the area where they are made, much like the French AOC (Appellation d'Origine Controllee). In practice, the rules for American wines are much broader and far less strict than those for French wines.
What are the seven (7) famous wine producing valleys--all AVA's--of California's Sonoma County?
a) Alexander Valley
b) Bennett Valley
c) Dry Creek Valley
d) Green Valley
e) Knights Valley
f) Russian River Valley
g) Sonoma Valley
The Napa Valley is famous for its wines, but surrounding the valley floor are five equally important mountains--each of them an AVA--where grapes are grown. Name them.
1) Atlas Peak
2) Diamond Mountain
3) Howell Mountain
4) Mount Veeder
5) Spring Mountain
What was the 1st AVA ever established in the U.S.?
The first AVA area ever was the Augusta AVA, established in 1980 in eastern Missouri.
Named for a famous Italian painter, what is the cocktail made with sparkling wine and white peaches?
The Bellini, often made with Prosecco.
What is a "blind tasting"?
During a blind tasting the tasters are not informed who made the wines they are tasting. They are often told the varietal and, less often, the year, but they must guess the producer.
What is a "double blind tasting"?
In a double blind the tasters aren't told the varietal, the producer, or the year of the wines they try: they must guess all three. (The term "double blind" is used more loosely in wine tasting than in the world of science.)
What is a "vertical tasting"?
A vertical tasting samples wines of the same type from different years, all by the same producer.
What is a "horizontal tasting"?
A horizontal tasting samples wines from the same year, usually of the same varietal, all from different producers.
What gift did American grape growers accidentally give to the French in 1860? (It almost wiped out the French wine industry.)
Cuttings from grapevines in the eastern U.S. transported the phylloxera aphid to France, and within a decade this tiny insect killed more than half of the country's grapevines.
Chile is hemmed in by the Andes Mountains on one side and the Pacific Ocean and the Atacama Desert on the other. How has the country's isolation made it the envy of viticulturalists?
Because of their isolation, Chilean vineyards have never been infested with phylloxera. This means that rather than being grafted onto alien rootstock, Chilean vines can be grown on their own roots, something rare in the wine industry.
What beverage originally produced in Spain is a mixture of fruit and wine?
Sangria. The name means "bleeding" in Spanish and originally referred to the drink's blood red color--a result of the red wine it's made from.
If a winemaker asks for "medium toast," what is this?
"Toast" refers to the deliberate burning of the insides of wine barrels. The more "toast," the less tannic the wine--but toast adds complexity.
What wine marketed as a "French aperitif wine" is actually made in Bardstown, KY?
Dubonnet
What school in Northern California is considered the best in the U.S. for studying viticulture and enology?
The University of California @ Davis.
What wine would go best with a dozen raw oysters on the half shell?

a) A buttery CA Chardonnay
b) A medium-dry German Riesling
c) A flinty, minerally French Chablis
d) None of the above
c) The classic pairing is oysters and Chablis. The Riesling's residual sugar would tend to overpower the delicacy of the oyster, as would the buttery taste of a fat Chardonnay.
If you taste a red wine and the predominant flavor and aroma make you think of leather, what varietal are you most likely tasting?
Syrah (or Shiraz) is known for its leathery taste and smell.
Which of the world's red wines is the first to be released each year, vintage after vintage?
Beaujolais Nouveau is a fruity, unoaked French wine available a few weeks after harvest--usually right before Thanksgiving. Since it is not aged, it is available in the year the grapes are picked.
What is the French version of grappa?
"Marc" is the French term for brandy distilled from the pomace of grapes.
Besides Cognac and Armagnac, name a famous regional French brandy.
Calvados, made in the Normandy region of the same name, is a brandy distilled from fermented apple juice.
When tasting anything, including wine, humans are thought to perceive 5 elements of taste. What are they?
1) Saltiness
2) Sweetness
3) Sourness
4) Bitterness
5) Umami

Often considered to be more of a sensation than a flavor, umami is linked to the presence of l-gluatamine and is translated as "savoriness."
Your wine geek friend looks at the prized 1955 French wine with the unpronouncable name that you inherited from your uncle and says, "It has a rather large ullage." What does that mean? Is it bad?
Ullage simply refers to the air space at the top of the bottle. Wines and liquors will evaporate over time, even though they're in a sealed bottle. With older wines, some evaporation is to be expected. With a younger wine, it is probably due to a faulty cork.
What wine makes gin into a Martini?
Dry Vermouth is the distinguishing factor; a martini without Vermouth is really just cold gin.
In the movie "An Affair to Remember", Terry McKay (Deborah Kerr) and Nickie Ferrante (Cary Grant) agree their affair should be "fun, light, enjoyable"--like Terry's favorite wine. What wine is she talking about?
She is referring to "pink Champagne" which they drink throughout the movie. Pink Champagne is actually a rose, an almost colorless sparkling wine tinted by the addition of a small amount of red wine.
What is a Champagne cocktail?
A classic combination of a sugar cube, Champagne, and a few dashes of Angostura bitters.
In Peter Benchley's 1974 novel, "Jaws", Sheriff Brody's wife, Ellen, displays her pretentiousness by asking him to open some wine, adding, "Oh, and the tire-bouchin is on the counter next to the red." What is she talking about and how is it wrong?
"Tire-bouchon" (literally, "pull cork") is the French word for corkscrew; Ellen Brody is mispronouncing it.
In the movie "Sideways", Miles, the uptight wine snob, waxes poetic over his dream wine--a 1961 Cheval Blanc--which we later see him drink. Why is his choice ironic?
Earlier in the movie, Miles clearly states his feelings by uttering the famous line, "I am not drinking any f**king Merlot." Cheval Blanc is a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc.
What does "frizzante" mean?
It is Italian for "lightly sparkling." Germans say "spritzig," and the French say "petillant."
In the classic bar manual, "Burke's Complete Cocktail and Drinking Recipes" (1934), the world's fourteen most famous cocktails are listed. Two of them are primarily wine-based. What are they?
a) The Champagne cocktail and the Bishop
b) The Sherry cocktail and the Dubonnet cocktail
c) The Kir and the white wine spritzer
d) The Kir Royale and Sangria
b) Both the Sherry cocktail and Dubonnet cocktail have essentially vanished from the scene.
What personal hygiene routine should not be engaged in directly before tasting wine?
One should not brush one's teeth immediately prior to tasting wine. It can take up to an hour for your taste buds to return to normal.
What was significant about the most expensive bottle of wine ever purchased?
The most expensive bottle of wine ever sold at auction was purchased from Christie's auction house in London on December 5, 1985. On the bottle were the word "Lafitte," the letters "Th.J.," and the number "1787." It was reported to have been owned by Thomas Jefferson and was purchased for $160,000 (105,000 British pounds). It has seen been identified as a fake.
A founding father wrote in his diary, "There was, as usual, a dissertation upon wines...Not very edifying." Who was the diarist and whom was he describing?
John Quincy Adams wrote that about Thomas Jefferson in 1807.
An esteemed wine writer and connoisseur assigned a magnum of 1921 Petrus one hundred points in 1995, the highest rating possible, pronouncing it "out of this universe." Why is this significant?
According to the people at Chateau Petrus, they didn't make a magnum bottle in 1921, meaning that the bottle was a fake. When asked about his gaffe by "The New Yorker" magazine, Robert Parker implied that even wine critics make mistakes but insisted that particular bottle of wine was still "wonderful."
If the bottle of wine on your table is from France's Beaujolais-Villages wine region, what kind of grapes were used to make it?
Wines from this AC in Beaujolais are made from the Gamay grape and considered one of the best the region has to offer.
What is barley wine?
It is a beer. In the U.S. this type of strong ale (8-12% alcohol by volume) must be labeled "barley wine-style ale" so there is no confusion with actual wine.
What is a microclimate?
A microclimate is a specific climate that exists in a small area. This area can be as small as a few yards and may encompass only one grapevine. Microclimates are often invoked when comparing the differences between grapes grown in the same vineyard.
Is Stags Leap a winery or an area?
It is both--or, actually, it's three different things. Illustrating the complexities of wine area naming, there are two Stags Leap wineries, Stag's Leap Wine Cellars and Stags' Leap Winery, both located in the Stags Leap District, an AVA in northern Napa Valley.
Are the small Champagne grapes seen at the local supermarket the same grapes used to make the sparkling wine?
No, the grapes used to make the sparkling wine from Champagne are Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier. The grapes at the market are actually of the Black Corinth variety.
The original "judgment of Paris" brought down the legendary city of Troy. Do you know the story of the other "judgment of Paris," the one that pertains to wine?
The more recent event was a wine tasting organized by Steven Spurrier in Paris in 1976, French Chardonnays and Cabernet Sauvignons were pitted against their American counterparts in a blind tasting. Considered pivotal because American wines won first place in both categories, this event did much to destroy the myth of the absolute superiority of French wines.
What American Chardonnay placed first in the Paris wine tasting of 1976?
The 1973 Chateau Montelena, made by Mike Grgich.
What American red won first place at the Paris wine tasting of 1976?
The 1973 Stag's Leap Wine Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, made by Warren Winiarski.
Who first brought European wine grapes to the New World?
The Marquis Francisco de Caravantes is credited with bringing wine grapes to S. America from the Canary Islands in 1553.
What is Pisco?
Pisco is a colorless S. American brandy made in Chile and Peru, primarily from Muscat grapes.
Is there such a thing as a sparkling red wine?
Yes, deeply colored sparkling wines are sometimes made from Pinot Noir grapes. In Italy there are various examples, and Australia has recently produced some delicious sparkling Shiraz.
If the wine in your glass is inky black and you are unable to see through it at all, odds are it was made from Teinturier grapes. What sets these grapes apart?
The Teinturier grapes--Alicante Bouschet, Royalty, Rubired, and some others--are dark-skinned, dark-fleshed grapes. Most red grapes have dark skins and white flesh; the color of the wines they produce depends on how long the must is in contact with skins after pressing.
Wine glasses without stems are all the rage. Why are these not such a great idea?
The human body generates a lot of heat, 98.6 degrees. Holding a wine glass by the bowl will only serve to heat the liquids inside. That is why wine glasses were designed with stems in the first place.
What famous school (with interesting initials) now occupies the old Christian Brothers Winery in St. Helena, California?
In 1995 the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) took over the former Christian Brothers Winery, which it now uses for its Napa Valley campus. Formerly known as Greystone Cellars, it is beside Highway 29, just north of the town of St. Helena.
If you are visiting Australia's Chateau Hornsby, the only winery in the Northern Territories, how will you most likely be arriving?
Due to its location (and partly as a tourist gimmick), most visitors arrive by camel.
What is Cold Duck?
Cold Duck is a type of pink wine originating in Germany. Leftover sparkling wines and Pinot Noir are mixed with sugar and bottled. The name was originally "kalte Ende" (cold end) but on expert labels it came to be spelled "kalte Ente," which means "cold duck."
What famous filmmaker purchased the Napa Valley's old Inglenook Winery in 1975?
Francis Ford Coppola purchased Inglenook, renaming it Niebaum-Coppola in honor of its founder, Gustave Niebaum.
As of 2008, which company was the world's largest producer of wines?
a) Almaden
b) Paul Masson
c) Vendange
d) Inglenook
e) All of the above
e) They were all part of Constellation Wines, the largest producer of wine in the world.
Which of the following personalities is involved in wine making?
a) Porn star Savanna Samson
b) Race car driver Mario Andretti
c) Hockey great Wayne Gretzky
d) All of the above
d) This just proves that everybody who is anybody is getting involved in the wine business.
White wines from France's Touraine region are made from two kinds of grapes. Name them.
Chenin Blanc and Sauvignon Blanc, but the two are not normally combined.
What two California brothers of Italian heritage (giants in the wine industry) were known for their well-publicized family feud?
Take your pick: Ernest and Julio Gallo or Robert and Peter Mondavi.
Can white wines be produced from dark-skinned grapes?
Yes. If the juice is pressed out of the grapes and quickly moved into a separate container, so there is almost no contact with the skins, the juice itself is relatively clear. A bit more contact yields a rose or blush wine, and longer contact results in a red wine.
What are the similarities between Pouilly-Fume and Pouilly-Fuisse?
a) They are made from the same grape.
b) They are from the same region
c) They are both from France
d) All of the above
c) Pouilly-Fuisse is from France's Burgundy region and is made from Chardonnay grapes, whereas Pouilly-Fume is from the Loire region and is made from Sauvignon Blanc. The similarity in name is just a coincidence.
What season are grapes harvested?
Autumn
What is distinctive about harvest time in Chile, Argentina, Australia, S. Africa, and New Zealand?
Since they are all below the equator, the seasons are reversed: their fall is our spring.
If a wine is 15% alcohol, what proof is it?
Since you arrive at proof by doubling the alcohol percentage, the answer is 30 proof.
Why would you swirl wine around a glass?
a) To oxygenate it
b) To check for legs on the glass
c) To observe its color
d) Because it looks cool
All these reasons are used for swirling wine. Which best describes your reason?
Who is the patron saint of wine?
St. Vincent
What is the difference between wine coolers and wine spritzers?
Coolers are usually made of a mixture of lemon-lime soda and wine. Spritzers are made with wine and seltzer water.
If a wine critic describes a wine as foxy, this is no Jimi Hendrix quotation. What is the reference to?
Foxy is a term used to describe wines that possess the musky quality characteristic of the N. American grapevine known as Vitis labrusca.
What famous wine critic's nose is insured for the same amount as the late actress Betty Grable's legs?
Robert Parker had his nose insured for one million dollars.
Cote Rotie is a famous French red Rhone wine. What white Rhone wine is often included in it?
Cote Rotie is made primarily from Syrah but often as Viognier added to it.
What is S. Africa's oldest winery?
Groot Constantia is the country's first winery. It was established in 1685 by Simon van der Stel.
Besides grapes, what else do winemakers crush at harvest?
Stems and leaves are often deliberately left in with the grapes to add flavor.
J.M. Coetzee wrote in his 1999 Booker Prize-winning book, "Disgrace," "He stares, frankly ravished. She lowers her eyes, offering the same evasive and perhaps even coquettish smile as before. In the kitchen he opens a bottle of Meerlust and sets out biscuits and cheese." What is Meerlust and where is it from?
Meerlust is a wine estate on the banks of the Eerste River in the district of Stellenbosch, S. Africa.
Where did the vines for Australia's first vineyards come from?
According to the British military colonist Watkin Tench: "On the 24th of January [1791], two bunches of grapes were cut in the Governor's garden [in Port Jackson--later called Sydney--Australia], from cuttings of vines brought three years before from the Cape of Good Hope."
Crime novelist Michael Dibdin compared Italian wines to composers in his book "A Long Finish." Match the wine with the composer.
a) Barolo 1) Beethoven
b) Babaresco 2) Bach
c) Brunello 3) Brahms
a) 2). Barolo and Bach are both strong, supremely structured, a little forbidding, but absolutely fundamental.
b) 1). Barbaresco and Beethoven take the qualities of the previous pair and lift them to heights of subjective passion and pain.
c) 3) Brunello and Brahms are softer, fuller, more romantic--the afterglow following so much strenuous excess.
Who is the quirky winemaker near Santa Cruz, CA, known for his stream-of-consciousness newsletter and such promotional flights of fancy as his celebratory "Death of the Cork"?
Bonny Doon's owner and winemaker, Randall Grahm, has a propensity for oddly named wines--Cigare Volant, A Critique of Pure Riesling--and outrageous antics. His 2002 "Death of the Cork" party seems to have been a bit premature.
What is a "negociant"?
A negociant (French for "dealer") is a wine wholesaler who buys wine from small producers and then sells it under his or her own name. Sometimes they buy grapes and make the wine themselves; sometimes they merely bottle it. The phrase "neogiciant-eleveur" identifies those who play a significant role in the manufacture of the wine.
Which grape is not a member of the Pinot family?
a) Pinot Blanc
b) Pinot Gris
c) Pinot Blanco
d) Pinot Noir
c) Not to be confused with Pinot Bianco, Pinot Blanco is actually Chenin Blanc and unrelated to the Pinot family.
What do the terms "Charmat process," "carbonation," and "transfer method" refer to?
Those are the three ways used to make sparkling wine by vintners who do not employ the traditional "methode champenoise."
When cloning animals, the clone is produced from a single somatic cell. In wine parlance the term clone is a bit broader. What is a wine clone?
A clone is a plant that has been propagated asexually by grafting or by taking a cutting. Within a variety, Chardonnay for instance, the word clone indicates a subvariety. While it is still genetically Chardonnay, it may have a serial number--FPS20, FPS15, etc.--that distinguishes it further.
What is the "French paradox"?
It has been noted that in spite of a diet rich in saturated fats, the French have a lower incidence of heart disease than many other groups. Originally put forth by an Irish doctor in 1819, it was a 1991 episode of "60 Minutes" that suggested that the secret was the French consumption of red wine. As a result, sales of red wine soard. The theory does seem to have some merit; however, it is far from proven.
If someone raves about a wine from the Shenandoah Valley, where is that wine from?
There are two AVA's that use Shenandoah in their names. One is in Virginia, the Shenandoah Valley AVA; the other is the California Shenandoah Valley AVA, located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada.
What makes a Port a Late Bottled Vintage (LBV)?
An LBV is a ruby Port made from grapes from a particular vintage year that either from lack of demand or poorer quality have been left in the barrel to age longer. Aged usually 4-6 years, they are not considered to be as fine as vintage ports.
What is a Vin Jaune?
It is a type of fortified wine made like Sherry in the Jura region of France.
Match the wine with its classic cheese pairing.

a) Port 1) Muenster
b) Sauternes 2) Stilton
c) Gewurztraminer 3) chevre
d) Sancerre 4) Roquefort
a) 2). Port and Stilton
b) 4). Sauternes and Roquefort
c) 1). Gewurztraminer and Muenster
d) 3). Sancerre and chevre
If you order a Volnay wine, there are two things you can be sure of. What are they?
1. It is from France.

2. It is made from Pinot Noir.
What is the "Holy Wine" that is primarily made in Tuscany?
Called Vin (or Vino) Santo, it is a type of dessert wine made by drying grapes until their sugars are heavily concentrated and then combining them with a little of the must from the previous vintage.
What is Lillet and what type of wine is used in its manufacture?
Lillet is an aromatized French wine made from cru bourgeois Bordeaux wine in the commune of Podensac, twenty miles from the city of Bordeaux. Usually served as an aperitif on the rocks, it gained renown as one of the original ingredients in James Bond's first martini.
Can wine be made from frozen grapes?
Yes. In fact, Eiswein (German for "ice wine") is a highly sought-after dessert wine. Because much of the water stays frozen, the pressed juice is heavily concentrated with sugar. Eiswein hails from Germany, but many cold-weather countries are now also producing it. Sometimes the grapes are artificially frozen using CO2.
Named after the color of a bishop's robes, what is this famous wine cocktail?
The Bishop is a combination of red wine, orange juice, lemon juice, and sugar.
What is the largest AVA in the U.S.?
The largest AVA in the U.S. is the 25,000 square miles (16 million acre) Ohio River Valley, spanning four states: W. Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky.
What is the smallest AVA in the U.S.?
The smallest AVA in the U.S. is the Cole Ranch AVA which comprises just 60 acres in Mendocino County, CA, and is owned by the Sterling family.
What is Vino Puro?
Vino Puro is the Spanish name for sacramental wine. Since such wines can be made only from grapes, with nothing else added, aromatized and flavored wines are deemed unacceptable. The Catholic church makes no stipulations as to what kind of wine it can be--in theory, red, white, sweet, kosher, and even sparkling are all acceptable. The Eastern Orthodox church stipulates that it must be red.
At long last you've decided to open that special Cabernet you've been cellaring. However, once you pop the cork you detect a strong sulfur smell reminiscent of a burnt match. Is the wine bad?
Don't fret. What you are experiencing is called "bottle stink." Sometimes excessive sulfur dioxide is added during the bottling process in an effort to keep the wine fresh. The smell should dissipate quickly and does not affect the wine in any way.
What is the difference between Sauterne and Sauternes?
Sauternes is a legally defined region in France that produces some of the best desert wines in the world. Sauterne is a cheap white wine made in the U.S. from low-quality grapes; it bears no relation to the French standard.
"Riunite on ice...That's nice!" What kind of wine is Riunite?
Riunite is part of an Italian wine cooperative. The most popular Riunite wine is a red Lambrusco. This vareity has many subspecies and is grown all over Italy. Wines made from this grape are usually sweet to off dry. Lambruscos don't age well and should be drunk young. There are red, white, and rose versions available.
What vodka made in California contains Viognier wine?
Hangar One, a joint venture of St. George Spirits and Germain-Robin (through Craft Distillers), produces a straight vodka that uses distilled Viognier wine in its production. The end product is a clear, odorless, colorless vodka that is smooth and silky.
What famous San Francisco brewer is combining winemaking with his family's famous cheesemaking background?
Fritz Maytag, scion of the Maytag washing machine family (the family is also responsible for a famous blue cheese) makes wine from his property in Napa County, California, under the York Creek label. The winery is across the street from Maytag's other business venture, the Anchor Steam brewery.
Should red wine be served at room temperature?
No. What if the room is 95 degrees? Red wine, without getting too ridiculous, should be served around 62 degrees. Some lighter reds should be a little warmer and some heavy reds a little cooler. If you order a red wine in a restaurant and it's too warm, about 10 minutes in an ice bath will cool it down.
Should all white wines be served ice cold?
No. Many of the subtle flavors in white wines are muted at cold temperatures. Most dry white wines taste or "show" better at temperatures just below standard cellar temperature, about 45-50 degrees.
What is the standard temperature for a wine cellar?
The most common temperature is 55 degrees, which is about the same as most caves. But as with most things wine, there are people who will argue fervently over a degree in either direction.
Why were grapes so important to the early missionaries in California?
They needed the grapes to make sacramental wine. No wine, no Mass.
He played Davy Crockett in the eponymous 1950s TV show and now makes wine in the Santa Ynez Valley. Who is he?
Fess Parker founded his eponymous winery in 1987. Much of the movie "Sideways" was shot on his land.
In 1993 he sang "Fine, Fine Wine," which was actually more about sex than wine. What heavily tattooed rocker now has his own winery?
Vince Neil of the band Motley Crue has been producing wine under the name Vince Vineyards since 2002.
Which Australasian superstar does not own a winery?

a) Singer Olivia Newton-John
b) Golfer Greg Norman
c) Actor Sam Neill
d) Cricket player Shayne Warne
e) Rock guitarist Angus Young
e) As of right now, AC/DC's guitarist is the only celebrity on the list who is not involved in a winery.
In 1968 he sang, "Businessmen, they drink my wine." Now they probably do. Who is he and what wine is he involved with?
Bob Dylan lent his name to an Italian wine. It is a blend of Montepulciano and Merlot from Le Terrazze winery and comes in a bottle signed by the singer/songwriter. The wine is named after his 1974 album "Planet Waves." The line quoted is from "All Along the Watchtower," off his album "John Wesley Harding."
How many bubbles are there in a bottle of sparkling wine?
According to research by the people at Bollinger Champagne, there are about 250 million bubbles in a bottle of Champagne, compared to about 49 million in a bottle of ordinary sparkling wine.
Who is not a famous wine writer?

a) Jay McInerney
b) Sharon Tyler Herbst
c) Michael Jackson
e) Robert Parker
c) The late Michael Jackson was a famous beer and whiskey writer.
Your wine tastes like pine resin. What wine is it and where does it come from?
It is called Retsina and it hails from Greece, where it has been made for almost three thousand years.
Are Sauvignon Blanc and Savignin Blanc the same grape?
No. Sauvignon Blanc--better known simply as Savignin--is used to make the excellent sweet wines of France's Jura region. Sauvignon Blanc is the famous white Bordeaux varietal used all around the world to make light, refreshing wines.