Wine Column

The Best of Wine, Spirits and Food!

GOURMET HIGHWAY: Chef John Folse, America’s Ambassador of Louisiana Cuisine

By Doc Lawrence. “Wine is sure proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.” – Benjamin Franklin Chef John Folse is revered as one of the great American chefs from Louisiana. His eight cookbooks spread the gospel of indigenous Louisiana cooking to the world. The PBS mainstay, “A Taste of Louisiana,” is …

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Young Wines Mirror Spring Magic

By Doc Lawrence. Then younger than springtime, am I, Gayer than laughter, am I, Angel and lover, heaven and earth, Am I with you! (From “South Pacific.”) “South Pacific” was one of the first movies I recall from childhood. It played at Atlanta’s Fox Theater, an architectural and cultural treasure where over the years I …

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Gourmet Highway

By Doc Lawrence. A MONTH OF LOVE, WINE AND FINE DINING “He who loves not wine, women and song remains a fool his whole life long.” – Martin Luther February features Valentine’s Day, our gentle ritual, at midpoint. Tradition strongly suggests red roses, chocolates, candlelit dining and a card with a personal proclamation of love. …

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Gourmet Highway: The Year of the Oyster

By Doc Lawrence. “Charming oysters I cry: My masters, come buy, So plump and so fresh, So sweet is their flesh.” Oysters, by Jonathan Swift. My oyster journey began in the Florida Panhandle fishing village of Carrabelle, a lovely place on the Gulf where Atlantans like my father would go for a weekend, sometimes taking …

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Holiday Gifts for Gourmets

By Doc Lawrence. Perhaps this season’s most intriguing gift possibility comes from Samuel Adams’ founder Jim Koch with his new beer, Utopias. Strong, rich, dark, uncarbonated and served room temperature in a snifter glass, it weighs in at 27 percent alcohol and runs $150 dollars per bottle. The jug is a work of art. …

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Thanksgiving With Fine Wine

By Doc Lawrence. The year is winding down and we’ll help it go in high style. Gatherings and homecomings are highlighted by feasts. Laughter permeates and for a little more than a month we celebrate. Wynton Marsalis, the jazz maestro, told me about the magic of the blues, one of America’s original art forms. The …

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A Grape By Any Other Name

By Robert Paul. So, what’s in a wine’s name or should we say “Sancerrely Folks?” Should wine from the sauvignon blanc grape be called Sancerre, white Bordeaux, sauvignon blanc, blanc fumé, fumé blanc, pouilly fumé? The answer is, all of the above. The flavors of the sauvignon blanc grape, which is usually vinified in stainless …

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What’s a Fair Price for Restaurant Wine?

By Robert Paul. Have you ever looked at a wine list in a restaurant and thought, “you’ve got to be kidding.” Suppose you go to a restaurant and find a familiar bottle listed on the menu, say a Ravenswood Vintner’s Blend Zinfandel, which you regularly purchase for $7-$9 a bottle. This restaurant offers it for …

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The wines for when you want a meal to sparkle

By Robert Paul. Nearly a decade ago when talking to a French wine buyer for a large beverage chain, I asked him what wine he’d suggest when a couple’s meal choices were divided between fowl or seafood on the one hand and beef or lamb on the other. What he said has stuck with me. …

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