Ethiopia Has a Burgeoning Wine Scene

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At present, coffee is the beverage most associated with Ethiopia, one of Africa’s poorest countries, but it could soon become wine. According to The Guardian, Castel, a large French beer and wine company, has begun to bottle its first round of Ethiopian-grown wines. In an effort to better its image abroad, the conglomerate began to cultivate [The Guardian]

Tiger Bone Wine Not Banned in China

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There is a long held belief in China that tiger bones are beneficial to one’s mental and physical health. In fact, traditional Chinese medicine has used nearly every part of the tiger for homeopathic remedies including its skin and whiskers. These days, killing tigers for its skin is banned, but killing tigers for its [The Daily Beast ]

Burgundy Vineyard Held Hostage for 1M Euros

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A decent bottle of Domaine Romanée-Conti costs about $10,000. A prized vintage has been auctioned for upwards of $100,000. Wines from “The Domaine” in Burgundy have cult status amongst collectors who can afford them, and, in 2010, were the victims of an unlikely hostage situation. This is the subject of recent book release Shadows in the Vineyard [New York Post]

California Wine Industry Majorly Stressed by Drought

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After three consecutive years of drought in California, vineyards could be the next big casualty, according to The Telegraph. The Golden State is facing the worst drought in a century, and the water levels are dangerously low as a result.  The damage to Californian vineyards could be devastating for the global wine market; 90 percent [The Telegraph]

Iceland Just Discovered Cocktails

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A land of very long winters, Iceland has only just begun to discover cocktails, according to Men’s Journal. Having gone through a dark period of prohibition from 1915 to 1935, just like the United States, the Nordic country is playing catch up. If they weren’t aware of Toddies and Smoking Bishops, what have they been drinking? Although spirits were reintroduced [Men's Journal]

Know Thy Ice: Why Shape and Size Matter

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The cocktail renaissance that brought us better booze and fresher ingredients has also brought us better ice. Lots of it. In fact, navigating the spectrum of shapes and sizes has even become the realm of home bartenders. And luckily, Wine Enthusiast offers a handy guide to ice types and their characteristics.  “Ice is to the bartender [Wine Enthusiast]

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Fake Wines Plague the UK, Including “Shardonnay”

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More news on the fake wine front: There is a one in five chance that the wine from local corner shops in England is counterfeit, according to the Daily Mail. Criminals seem to be printing convincing labels of recognizable wine brands like Jacob’s Creek and offloading them at small independent shops.  Recently, a store in North [Daily Mail]

Strapped for Cash? Pawn Your Wine Collection.

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A couple of pawnbrokers in New York are accepting auction-grade fine wines as collateral for loans, according to the Wall Street Journal. Both Borro Co. and New York Loan Co. lend money to cash strapped New Yorkers, although—unsurprisingly—wine is not their specialty. Wine-based loans tend to be large due to issues with storage and delivery. [The Wall Street Journal]

What Does the Future Hold for Artisanal Spirits?

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As the category of craft spirits continues to grow, their influence in the world of artisanal food gains momentum as well. Next week on July 23rd, in a panel discussion and tasting put on by Gotham Media “Artisanal Spirits and the Future of Drinking,” a handful of spirits entrepreneurs and experts will talk on the movement’s More

Is Idaho the Next Bourbon Country?

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The rising popularity of whiskey has seen independent distilleries pop up across the states in recent years, now including Idaho. Boise Weekly highlights its recent crop of local distillery openings, many of which are using locally-sourced ingredients.  8 Feathers Distillery plans to produce bourbon and “Scotch-style, single malt whiskey,” as well as experiment with unconventional grains like [Boise Weekly]

The Punch A-Z

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A direct descendant of punch, the basic sour forms the template for a host of modern drinks. First mentions of the sour, made from a base spirit, citrus, sugar and water and served neat in a small bar glass, can be traced to the mid-19th century in the United States. The name—a reference to the […]

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