Monday, October 16, 2017

Is Wine Gluten Free?

Gluten is a protein that's found in wheat, cereals, and grains. Many people these days suffer an immune reaction to gluten, commonly known as coeliac disease, where they experience abdominal problems from consuming gluten. This prevents many people from drinking beer, which is brewed with grains. Since wine, however, is made from grapes and contains less than 20 parts per million of gluten, it is generally considered gluten free.

There are a couple instances in which gluten can come in contact with wine such as ageing and fining. It is very uncommon these days, but some wine makers use a flour based paste to seal the wine barrels which can contaminate the wine during ageing. The process which filters out unwanted particles from the wine to make it clear is called fining. Gelatin and isinglass are the most commonly used agents during the fining process but this causes issues to those who want vegetarian or vegan wine. To create vegetarian or vegan wine, gluten can be used instead, but this causes issues for coeliac sufferers. After the fining process, centrifuge can be used to remove the gluten but this is costly and the amount of gluten present is usually very minuscule.

The good news for those effected by coeliac disease is that it's pretty safe to consume all the delicious wine they want! Any wine that's produced with higher than the legal requirement in the UK and the US (20 parts per million gluten) would have to alert buyers on the bottle's label.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Enjoy the Fire

Sitting next to a fire while dining, drinking wine, or just relaxing is a great way to unwind and enjoy yourself and Napa Valley offers many locations with the perfect fire-side atmosphere. A lot of lodging in the area offer rooms with fireplaces and/or outdoor fireplaces to warm up next to. Here are some beautiful fireplaces you should visit:

Hotels that offer fireplaces in your room

Where to sit outside by the fire
• Cosentino

Where to dine next to a fireplace

Monday, October 2, 2017

Wine & Pumpkin Food Pairings

October brings sweater weather, beautiful changing leaves, and delicious pumpkin flavors. While apples and squash are popular in the fall season, pumpkin is still the favorite flavor and it doesn't need to be paired with only sweet or spicy wines. Here are some wines to pair with different pumpkin dishes:

Pumpkin Risotto - This rice dish pairs wonderfully with a dry Prosecco or a Chardonnay. The floral accents of the pumpkin are brought out through the sparkling white wine's clean, light flavors.

Pumpkin Cream Sauce - Cream tends to make a dish heavier so a wine with some weight to it helps balance it out. A wine like Sangiovese can match the strength of a cream sauce without overpowering the pumpkin flavor.

Pumpkin Pie - Oloroso Sherry or Riesling are great wines to pair with pumpkin pie, cake, or other pumpkin desserts because they bring out the spicy flavor.

Pumpkin Soup - Since it's a rich and creamy soup, pumpkin soup pairs well with the bold, tangy flavors of a Sherry to create a delicious contrast.