The Sip Better wine club is a teeny tiny business that I run out of Minneapolis. But that doesn't mean I do it alone! Below, meet three of the people who keep the Sip Better juice flowing behind the scenes. They'll be popping into the blog here and there to share what they know, so keep your eyes peeled and enjoy! --Leslee, Sip Better Sommelier
What is your role at Sip Better?
Spreadsheet Queen: I manage Sip Better's social media calendar and content.
Favorite weird wine pairing?
Sometimes I eat a can of black olives for dinner + a glass of Albariño.
Favorite place you've traveled?
When I studied abroad in Rio de Janeiro, I traveled inland to Ouro Preto for Easter weekend, and it was the most beautiful experience in such a historic town. They do an overnight art festival to paint the streets with flower petals for Easter morning and the entire town does a passion play in the streets.
How about a hidden talent?
I’ve played classical piano since age 4 and guitar since age 7.
What are 3...
Photo: Kelsey Curtis via Unsplash
When it comes to healthy living, wine--and alcohol in general--often doesn't fit into the picture. Whether you're counting calories or just trying to keep your alcohol consumption light, an abstract wine label can leave you wondering what the heck you're actually consuming and what it might mean for your health. Luckily, you really only need to know one thing: Alcohol content matters! When you see that little percentage on a wine label, pay attention.
Alcohol content signals a few things. First of all, it's the primary way to decide whether or not a wine is high in calories. Because alcohol is produced with sugars (in wine's case, natural grape sugars), we know that wines with a larger alcohol content (15% +) may contain left over sugar (called residual sugar) because the yeast used in the fermentation process has been exhausted. Remember, yeast eats sugar--kind of like Ms. Pac-man--during the fermentation process, and the bioproduct is alcohol. Wines that contain this left over...
Photo: Leonardo Sanches via Unsplash
Every year it's a challenge: The perfect, non-cliche, not-too-sappy yet totally memorable Valentine's Day date. Phew! We got your back. Here's a quick list of unique date ideas led by some fantastic wines. Cheers to you and your sweetie!
PUZZLE IT OUT
Get analog! Because so many of us are glued to screens these days, something as simple as doing a puzzle seems suddenly kooky and new. So, do a puzzle with your boo this February 14th! There are some genuinely gorgeous puzzles out there (check out Galison for some options!) to spice things up, and puzzling offers a natural environment for alllllmost grazing the hand of your hot date as you reach for another piece. [eye flutter]
PAIR WITH: François Montand, Brut Méthode Traditionnelle Blanc de Blancs | A sneaky and sophisticated sparkling wine for thoughtful types
KICK IT AT KARAOKE
Dress up in your favorite 80s metal gear and go crush it karaoke with a bangin' duet! Karaoke is like aerobics for the soul––guaranteed to make you sweat and...
Photo: Vinnie Biskupic
Kansas City vs. San Francisco. A BBQ mecca vs. the wine capital of America. Don’t know who to pick for tomorrow’s big game? Here’s a Super Bowl pairing we can all cheer for!
KC-style barbecue is known for its dry-rubbed and smoked meats that are slathered in thick tomato and molasses based barbecue sauces. For a dish with smoke, spice, and savory sweetness we want a wine to match those classic tailgate flavors. Turns out Northern California pumps out some killer barbecue wine with higher tannins to cut through that melt-in-your-mouth fatty meat.
Created by Vinnie Biskupic
*Pair to Peterson 'Mendo Blendo' 2013 Petite Syrah, Syrah, Carignane, Grenache| Sonoma, California
*Check out our other Football wine recommendations in the "What Your Tailgate Life is Missing” Shop Page
Three Slabs of Spare Ribs
Kansas City Dry Rub:
- 3 cups brown sugar
- 3/4 cup dried mustard
- 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
- 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoon smoked paprika
Photo: Leslee Miller
Have you heard about Pét-Nat? This cute little word seems straight from the mouths of millenials, doesn’t it? Pét-nat, or pétillant naturel, is the French term for “naturally sparkling” wine. And here’s the thing: pét-nat is NOT a frothy trend. In fact, it’s an ancient type of wine, and its recent rise in popularity is more than well-deserved.
Pétillant naturel is a genre of sparkling wine that predates Champagne, if you can believe it. Its méthode ancestrale involves bottling an unfinished (or still-fermenting) wine and allowing it to finish fermenting inside of the bottle. Contrary to the Champagne method—which requires one fermentation in tanks and then a second fermentation in the bottle, with added sugars and yeast—the pét-nat way is wild and volatile. When making a pét-nat, the winemaker must trust the grapes’ naturally-occurring yeasts and sugars to do their dance without interference or alteration. The result is fizzy, frenetic wine that is refreshing and surprising in its...