Thursday, February 09, 2006

Move Over Bacchus!

Move over Bacchus! The Wine Goddess is taking over.

A year ago, February I bought the book Wine for Women by Leslie Sbrocco. She was one of the speakers at Taste Washington last year and although I had won tickets, I was sorry I could not get there to hear her speak.

Wine for Women is fairly complete book teaching the reader about wine, regions and also giving ideas on pairing wines with food, which I always enjoy. However, I wish that there would have been less advertising of labels in the book. I will confess that when it comes to wine books, I am a Jancis Robinson fan.

I think since women are becoming the prominent buyers of wine, at least in the supermarket, we will be seeing more suggestions of wine pairing with food. Wine and food are a natural. They belong together. Visiting with a European woman winemaker last night, wine is considered food. It is the intricate part of the European meal, unlike here in the USA we often regard wine as the happy hour or cocktail party beverage.

Some progressive supermarkets are using shelf-talkers in their wine sections giving the customer suggestions on what wine will pair well with particular foods in their market. An example would be "Brand Walla Walla Wine pairs perfectly with the crimini mushrooms and Kobe beef in the organic section and remember dessert with a Valrhona chocolate bar from France." More and more wineries are understanding the importance of food and their wines, as they give out tried recipes that include their wine in the recipe and/or suggested wine and food pairings.

Bart O’Brien of O’Brien Family Vinyards says:

“Women buy wine to be shared, to create an emotional moment. Men often buy wine to be hoarded. They take it back to their cave and save it until another collector comes over. ... It's about scores and history -– it's a little game of one-upmanship."

From my experience, Bart speaks volumes.

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