Author Archives: Rich Doherty

The Wines of summer

The wines of summer, clean crisp and bright, just like summer in Texas. And… it’s hot, very hot so we need something that is cold and refreshing. I turn to warmer climates in Europe for the summer wines that cool us off so well. Vinho Verde from Portugal, slightly effervescent clean, un-oaked and so very nice served ice cold. The white wines of Italy, Pinot Grigio is great, but so are the other whites of Italy don’t shy away from Verdicchio, Gavi, Orvieto and Trebbiano to name a few. Spain’s Albarino is a terrific pair for lighter summer cuisine, and seafood. White Rioja is an often overlooked summer wine.

Other options from around the globe, Torrontes from Argentina, The crisp Chenin Blancs of South Africa, and New Zealand’s aromatic and refreshing Sauvignon Blancs. We keep our cold box stuffed here at Twin Liquors so you’ll always find a nice cold wine to beat the summer heat.

Cheers, Y’all
Rich Doherty

Whiskey, Whisky, Whiskee

I have always had a passion for wine, but as I try more spirits I have found a new area of interest, Whiskey! Between Canada, Scotland, Ireland, America, and even Japan the diversity of whiskey rivals wine like no other spirit.

The smooth easy Canadian style is a great introduction to whisky. America’s own Bourbon whiskey, which can only be made in the USA, is a more mature and complex style, but still friendly and approachable. The Irish make whiskey in a slightly drier style. The Japanese are now the world’s whisky champions having recently claimed many top awards in international competitions. Lastly the Scotch whisky, the most unique of whiskies due to their use of peat to dry the malted barley lends a distinct smokiness the strength of which can vary tremendously across the many varied production areas of that country. Want to go further? Come see us for Whiskey Mash Up and Whiskey 101 events in our classroom!!

And, when you see me, don’t forget to ask me why I have spelled whiskey differently so many times.

Think Pink

The first time I tried Rosé, I fell in love.  What’s Rosé, you ask.

Rosé is a pink wine made by leaving the red grape skins in contact with their juice for a short amount of time. The color is extracted from the skins. After a few days the winemaker checks the color. When the winemaker feels it is the right shade of pink the skins are removed. The wine is then left to finish fermentation. A Rosé’s color runs from light coppery pink to almost fully red. The original, and in my opinion the best, come from the Riviera region in the south of France.

However, all Rosé is perfect for our hot dry Texas summers, especially for the red wine drinkers out there.  I think of Rosé as a less saturated red wine.

And, just a little bit of history for you… Dry Rosé was made intentionally, while it’s sweeter cousin, White Zinfandel was created by accident, when in an experiment of drawing off red juice to create a white wine, fermentation stopped with 2% residual sugar. The tasting room consumer loved the sweeter profile and boom, White Zin was born. Call it a happy accident that created wine lovers across the US who eventually moved over to drinking drier wines.

Please visit your Local Twin Liquors and, as always, we’ll strive to help you find the perfect wines regardless of its sweetness or color.

Happy Mother’s Day,

Rich Doherty

Italy

My father was stationed at Aviano Air Force Base in Italy when I was a small child.  It was then that I got my first taste of Italian wine. A weekend evening at the local Trattoria with the neighbors was a common event. The Italians served children a mix of mineral water with a splash of red wine, which I apparently fell in love with.  And the love has continued.

There are 3,000 plus grape varieties and Italy makes wine from almost all of them. Let’s touch on a few classics.  The Sangiovese grape of Chianti has a natural affinity for tomatoes.  Pair this wine with   Pizza, Tomato Sauce, and Bruschetta. Prosecco from the Veneto region, where we lived, is a clean refreshing sparkling wine value that is unbeatable.  The intense Nebbiolo Wines from Piedmont are easily among the finest wines on the planet. For dessert we have the amazing Moscato Di Asti. It’s like drinking a fresh apple soaked in honeysuckle blossoms.

I could write forever on the complexities of Italian wines, so come see our amazing selection of Italian wines at your nearest Twin Liquors, and we will help you find a great wine.

 

Ciao Y’all

Rich

TEXAS TEA?!

Texas Tea conjures images, to some, of their Texas roots, but today, in our industry, it is synonymous with Sweet Tea Vodkas! Oh, how the landscape changes… the current growth of wineries, craft breweries, and distilleries in Texas is astounding.

20 years ago there were a handful of Texas wineries.  Today, there are now more than 300 wineries in Texas. We are the 2nd most popular wine tourism destination in the USA.

As for beers, Shiner, Pearl and Lone Star paved the way. But, today, I can’t even count the number of Austin local breweries, let alone others from Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio. We’re brewing a river of great beer in the Lone Star State.  Austin’s own Jester King was able get a Texas State law changed so craft beers could be more accurately labeled and sold.

Distilled Spirits are the king of the industry though. Tito’s was the first and most successful spirit brand to start in Texas.  Numerous other have joined in.  Contrary to the highly individualistic Spirit of Texas, these distillers share their knowledge and experience with each other to promote a growing industry.  Vodka, rum, gin, bourbon, and whiskey are being made in the State of the Yellow Rose. The only spirit off limits for distilling in Texas is Tequila, which must be made in Mexico by Mexican Law and Regulation.

Austin’s own Twin Liquors proudly supports the local producers.  Come see us and we will show you our favorites!

Wines and Romance

Wine evokes emotions like no other beverage. It appeals to all of the senses in the same way that a true love appeals to all of your being. Sight, smell, touch and taste are all important factors in the appreciation of wine.

To help set a romantic and appreciative tone for your Valentine’s celebration. Select food, and wine that you are passionate about, that has high quality, and is worthy of the loves in your life. Any of our highly trained Wine Authorities are always available to help you select the perfect wine.

As only the best will do, here are some wines that are often considered the best in their class. French Champagne, Argentine Malbec, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, Oregon Pinot Noir, German Riesling, and California Zinfandel.
Finish the meal with sweets, and a dessert wine. Moscato Di Asti, Port, and Sauternes are three that are versatile and great picks to satisfy the sweet tooth in all of us.

To life love and peace, Cheers,
Rich Doherty