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Archive for October, 2011

Please vote for our blog in the 2011 South African Blog Awards.

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Where’s Douglas Green? In Johannesburg this week!

Looking forward to meeting our fans at Winex.
See you there?

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If you’re looking for something to go with wine, it will often be cheese. And if you’re looking for something to go with cheese, then it will definitely be wine. At dinner parties around the world, when you’ve exhausted the menu and are looking for something to nibble on, the wine and cheese pairing will never disappoint. But why do wine and cheese go so well together? Is it simply that they please our taste buds, or is there a more scientific reason for this match made in heaven?

Tannin – What Is It?

Actually, both are true. Most wine and cheese buffs will tell you that this food and beverage combo goes together because of the tannin. Whether they can explain it any more than that is unlikely, as most laymen don’t know the science behind this answer and don’t really know what tannins are.

Tannins are natural organic compounds usually found in grape skins as well as seeds and stems. They’re great antioxidants and wonderful preservatives, which is part of the reason they are added to wine. When the wine is being aged in oak barrels, tannins are added for structure and texture – and preservation.

Winemakers use tannin to give wines the distinctive flavors we recognize. Variations in the process result in variations in the taste, so there’s fine control over the bottle of wine we finally get to drink. Depending on the desired flavor, vintners can squeeze the grapes to remove the juice and ensure that little tannin is released. Alternatively, they can crush the grapes to release more tannin, as they do with red wine.

When there’s a concentrated amount of tannin, it can cause the mouth to pucker and result in a bitter aftertaste at the back of the mouth. That’s known as tannic, which is also the natural sediment found at the bottom of a wine bottle.

The amount of tannin also affects when a wine is drinkable. Red wine with only a little tannin is drunk at a young age. In contrast, a wine that improves with age will have plenty of tannin, but the ageing process will soften the taste and reduce any bitter aftertaste.

Tannins are also found in tea, resulting in the chalky, dry taste that hits the back of your mouth when you drink strong tea. And that’s why the English put milk in tea – to soften the taste of the tannins.

The Wine and Cheese Pairing

So what does all this have to do with wine and cheese? It’s this. Scientists have found that high fat, high protein foods balance the taste of tannin. That makes cheese the perfect food to go with wine. Of course, it doesn’t stop there, because there is always the question of which wine goes with which cheese, a hotly debated topic. After decades of testing, and countless “experts” brainstorming on holidays and have-a-go wine buffs drinking Merlot on the most expensive ski deals Austria has to offer, there are mile-long lists on the internet that claim to have the answer. And if you have a favorite wine or cheese, a quick Google search will help you find a good complement to add to your shopping list before your dinner party.

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Snacks and snacking has sunk many diets but there is hope.  Snacks are a terrific way to satisfy your hunger and speed up your metabolism but you need to snack right.

It’s so much easier to eat on the go, but snacking can do major calorie damage to your system. Luckily, it’s possible to treat yourself to snacks and remain healthy

“Snacks are a terrific way to satisfy your hunger and speed up your metabolism,” says nutritionist Bev Croock. But it’s important to pay attention to what you eat: stay away from foods that are high in calories and saturated fats.

“Let no more than three hours pass between meals or snacks,” Croock says. “This way, you’ll ensure a constant supply of glucose to your body’s cells. More energy and fewer cravings for sugary and fatty foods will be your reward.”

Croock has a few quick and healthy snack ideas:
– Apple or banana with almond butter
– Cottage cheese mixed with yogurt, berries and walnuts or pecan nuts
– Hard-boiled eggs with carrot and celery sticks and hummus
– Celery sticks with organic peanut butter (a classic quick snack)
– Avocado slices wrapped in deli turkey breast
– A piece of sprouted grain or whole grain toast with nut butter and berries
– Freshly sliced pineapple with a handful of macadamia nuts
– A bowl of blueberries mixed with raw almonds
– Cottage cheese with cinnamon, apple slices and walnuts

Snacking strategies
Here’s how to ensure healthy snacking becomes a part of your dietary routine:
– Prepare your snacks in advance
– Keep your snacks with you
– Give yourself a variety of choices
– Satisfy cravings with healthy alternatives
– Read serving size information

Read more on destinyconnect.com 

 

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“What a great honour!” says Oenologist Jaco Potgieter in celebration of Douglas Green Vineyard Creations Chardonnay 2010 that received a coveted Diamond at the Winemakers’ Choice Awards.

 

The Winemakers’ Choice Awards is the only Competition that is judged exclusively by winemakers and claims to be ‘a true reflection of wine perfection’. “Douglas Green is not made in isolation, and this recognition shows the great teamwork between our growers and cellars,” says Jaco.

This was one of only three Diamond Awards for wooded Chardonnay, and the news follows the recent Gold medal victory at Michaelangelo International Wine Awards for this same Chardonnay, confirming its consistency, quality and value.

“It’s a very lightly wooded style with a focused core of tropical fruit enhanced by a creamy complexity and great body from extended fine lees contact. It’s a very attractive wine at a very attractive price,” says Jaco.

Douglas Green Vineyards Creations Chardonnay 2010 is already flying off shelves of grocers and fine wine retailers across the country at around R35.

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