wine predator.............. gwendolyn alley

Once a week, Jordan Winery posts a new video on their youtube channel. Yesterday, award winning Jordan blogger and PR person extradinaire Lisa Matttson and her team at Jordan went “Gangnam Style” and posted this parody of PSY’s K-POP youtube megahit that has had the most views of any video ever. While the Jordan video may not hit the million mark, it went from 250 yesterday to nearly 1000 views today and is sure to bring a laugh to wine drinkers familiar with the images in the original.

There are a number of parody videos out there; some like Jordan’s, parody the images but others also change the lyrics like “Annoying Orange’s Nya Nya Style” which is a favorite of my son or my personal favorite, NASA Style which combines intelligent lyrics with an amazing location–the Johnson Space Center!


PS Time for bubbles! Tomorrow 12/16 is the…

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Learn The Secrets of Each Red Wine Color

The wine blog publishes an impressive quantity of quality tutorials on all aspects of this wonderful industry. Here’s one about wine colors.


The color and opacity of a wine gives you many hints as to the style of wine you’re about to enjoy. Most places where we typically enjoy wine are too dark to observe a wine, such as a low-lit restaurant or, in my case, an office room lit by a computer screen at 2am in the morning! However, if you look at the color of wine in a more scientific setting with clean lighting (and a white background) you’ll see how the colors of red wines are substantially different from one another. Learning how to identify the colors in red wine will help you become a blind-tasting master.

Read the full article here.

Make wine at home

Step by Step guide to make wine at home from grapes. I have just sampled my first bottle after leaving it to mature for 10 months. It’s author, UK wine maker and artist Nick Mitch says “It is the best wine that I have ever made”.

wine predator.............. gwendolyn alley

This is the time of year where everyone wants to know which wine they should have with Thanksgiving dinner. Since most people don’t want to break the bank, what follows are a numbe rof recommendations that land squarely on the less expensive side of a $20 bill.

Personally, my go to wine for turkey OR ham is zinfandel. There is alchemical magic in that combination!

How do I know? Many years ago, I worked the tasting room at Ridge and so of course I brought a bottle of zin to that Thanksgiving table.

Last year, during the weekend before Thanksgiving, I convinced my husband to make a turkey AND then a ham so I could try a bunch of wines with these classic holiday meals.  I came up with these three blog posts:

white and rose wines with Turkey

red wines with Turkey

wines for Ham

Since holiday meals usually…

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UCLA astronomers at Keck Observatory discover pivotal star to test Einstein’s theory | W. M. Keck Observatory

October 4th, 2012

Today, UCLA astronomers using the W. M. Keck Observatory reported the discovery of a remarkable star that orbits the enormous black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy in a blistering 11-and-a-half years, the shortest known orbit of any star near this black hole.

The star, known as S0-102, may help astronomers discover whether Albert Einstein was right in his fundamental prediction of how black holes warp space and time, said Andrea Ghez, leader of the discovery team and professor of physics and astronomy, who holds UCLA’s Lauren B. Leichtman and Arthur E. Levine Chair in Astrophysics, and is a co-author. The research is published Oct. 5 in the journal Science….

Read the full article here: UCLA astronomers at Keck Observatory discover pivotal star to test Einstein’s theory | W. M. Keck Observatory.

Red Wine Really Rocks Your Health, Really

The public has been aware of the health benefits of red wine for quite some time and most of us will attest that they’re known as common knowledge around the world now.

In a recent interview which was part of a broader article pertaining to new findings related to red wine and published on the website, KYW Newsradio Medical Editor Dr. Brian McDonough says, “We already know resveratrol helps reduce inflammation of the body. It helps lower cholesterol and there have been some studies that show it reduces the risk of heart disease and certain forms of cancer.”

But there’s more… A lot more indeed. A new study performed at Duquesne University reveals that red wine as well as some berries contain a “miracle molecule” which, according to Assistant Professor of Pharmacology at Duquesne University Jane Cavanaugh, helps older individuals maintain and regain mobility. After testing with mice, Prefessor Cavanaugh said “As these animal age, they lose some of their motor coordination. Very similar as to humans do as they age. And when we gave them out the resveratrol, the older mouse has less loss of motor coordination.”

Read the full article:


Our vineyards are in full veraison right now—“What’s that?” you ask.  It’s the change of color grapes go through as they ripen or mature.  The entire bunch will have a variety of colors present from green to dark purple and all the shades in between.  When we see this, we know we have about 55 days until harvest and crush (we like to call it “caress”, since no violence is tolerated in our winemaking process, only love and tenderness!)  We used an image of Veraison for our label art and it’s a pretty good representation of the colors inherent in the progress toward ripeness.  We eagerly anticipate the bouquet of fermentation that occurs when the wild yeast meets the juice of the freshly pressed grapes in the fermentation tank and begins to devour the sugar.  Once the sugars in the berries reach 24-26 brix (a measure of sugar content) we harvest and press the grapes to extract the marvelous juice.  Wild yeast is naturally present in the winery and swarms to the sweet juice and in the process of enjoying the sugar, produces alcohol and CO2.  We wait for the total consumption of the sugars by the yeast, thereby leaving no residual sugar and producing a “dry” wine.  As most know, all grape juice is white, but by introducing the dark red skins into the fermentation tank for a brief time, we produce the red color and hence “red” wine.   If you have never seen the process you should visit your favorite winery and watch the process this Fall.