black holes and gray matter. in one thousand tangos.

             
"Red wine does a body good—except for when it’s slowly killing you. For every study that touts the health benefits of red wine, there’s some buzzkill reminding us that booze is bad. The conflicting advice is so confusing it’s dizzying, which can leave you feeling sorta drunk.
For starters, you may have heard about red wine being “heart healthy.” That’s because the flavonoids in red wine are believed to lower “bad” cholesterol and raise “good” cholesterol, which is supposed to prevent blocked arteries. It’s has anticoagulant properties, which reduces blood clotting, but that only works while the wine is in your system, so in order to stave off a heart attack, you’d have to keep tossing ‘em back. But then you’re placed at a risk of the long-term effects of excessive alcohol use, which, ironically, includes cardiovascular problems.
Drinking red wine can extend a person’s life, except for when it makes them die. The natural chemicals found in red wine are believed to help prevent Alzheimer’s disease, but then again, wine consumption is linked to dementia.
Resveratrol, the magic ingredient responsible for most of the health benefits of red wine (the magical aspects of which have been greatly exaggerated), is thought to slow the aging process. But most people recognize that heavy drinking eventually leaves you looking old and gross.
Speaking of magic and the way you look, red wine actually blocks fat cells from forming. The bummer with that, though, is that booze calories “count more” for moderate drinkers. Also, red wine could negate the health effects of exercise, so it doesn’t seem like a very good weight loss plan. The compounds in red wine can prevent cavities and plaque buildup, but dentists warn that alcohol is super corrosive for your gums. And anybody who’s looked in the mirror after a glass or four has been presented with the horror of wine teeth and chapped wine lips. …
The compound in red wine might help treat some kinds of cancers, and red wine can be helpful in preventing bone cancer and breast cancer. Except that boozing is linked to breast cancer as well as mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, and colon cancer.
So how much is too much? At what point does wine turn from being healthy to unhealthy? Apparently, for women, it’s one 5 oz glass per day. Men get to drink two glasses per day, which is bullshit.
If that depresses you, pour yourself a glass of pinot noir. People who drink a glass of red wine a day are less likely to be depressed. And if nothing else, just know that if you drink a lot of red wine, you’re still less of a drunk than a white wine drinker.”
This is all true.

"Red wine does a body good—except for when it’s slowly killing you. For every study that touts the health benefits of red wine, there’s some buzzkill reminding us that booze is bad. The conflicting advice is so confusing it’s dizzying, which can leave you feeling sorta drunk.

For starters, you may have heard about red wine being “heart healthy.” That’s because the flavonoids in red wine are believed to lower “bad” cholesterol and raise “good” cholesterol, which is supposed to prevent blocked arteries. It’s has anticoagulant properties, which reduces blood clotting, but that only works while the wine is in your system, so in order to stave off a heart attack, you’d have to keep tossing ‘em back. But then you’re placed at a risk of the long-term effects of excessive alcohol use, which, ironically, includes cardiovascular problems.

Drinking red wine can extend a person’s life, except for when it makes them die. The natural chemicals found in red wine are believed to help prevent Alzheimer’s disease, but then again, wine consumption is linked to dementia.

Resveratrol, the magic ingredient responsible for most of the health benefits of red wine (the magical aspects of which have been greatly exaggerated), is thought to slow the aging process. But most people recognize that heavy drinking eventually leaves you looking old and gross.

Speaking of magic and the way you look, red wine actually blocks fat cells from forming. The bummer with that, though, is that booze calories “count more” for moderate drinkers. Also, red wine could negate the health effects of exercise, so it doesn’t seem like a very good weight loss plan. The compounds in red wine can prevent cavities and plaque buildup, but dentists warn that alcohol is super corrosive for your gums. And anybody who’s looked in the mirror after a glass or four has been presented with the horror of wine teeth and chapped wine lips. …

The compound in red wine might help treat some kinds of cancers, and red wine can be helpful in preventing bone cancer and breast cancer. Except that boozing is linked to breast cancer as well as mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, and colon cancer.

So how much is too much? At what point does wine turn from being healthy to unhealthy? Apparently, for women, it’s one 5 oz glass per day. Men get to drink two glasses per day, which is bullshit.

If that depresses you, pour yourself a glass of pinot noir. People who drink a glass of red wine a day are less likely to be depressed. And if nothing else, just know that if you drink a lot of red wine, you’re still less of a drunk than a white wine drinker.”

This is all true.

1. Willett Striaght Rye Whiskey, $36

Never heard of Willett? You’re not alone. But it’s a very old and connected distilling family down Kentucky way, with a track record of stellar bourbons — like Black Maple Hill — that they’ve long produced under the guise of K.B.D. or Kentucky Bourbon Distillers. Willet’s Pot Still Reserve Bourbon, in its still-shaped bottle, is a lovely soft sipper, but the recent release of a four-year-old, single-barrel rye, at strengths hovering right around 55 percent, or 110 proof, is the serious deal for cocktails. That extra oomph stands up gallantly to dilution, delivering a strong clear spice, lofted on wood and char. Let the winter drinks parade begin: Manhattans, old-fashioneds, sazeracs, boulevardiers, vieux carrés. …

2. Enlightenment Wines

There’s wine and there’s wine, and then there are the dark pyrotechnics going on in a tiny barn in upstate New York at the hand and whim of Raphael Lyon of Enlightenment Wines. What this Brown University graduate does in his winery, the smallest registered one in the state, is much more akin to creating esoteric fermented cocktails than to making wines, which is perhaps what keeps me coming back to his incredible locavore concoctions. Effectively, he ravages the markets and fields near his winery for anything comely: apples, dandelions, currants, grapes, honey, cherries, elderberries, maple syrup, chrysanthemums, roses, spices and herbs galore, and makes cuvées out of them, very deftly and in amounts so small it has made him something of a cult figure in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, where he lives. He sells them on a long-closed C.S.A. basis, and these are usually impossible to get ahold of without begging them off of Lyon directly, but he has just opened up a Web site to slightly increased trade. Dazzle that jaded oenophile you’ve been trying to impress.

Case Study | Cups of Good Cheer

Jon Rimmerman sells $30 million worth of wine a year over e-mail. How? Well, let him tell you a little story about a young syrah he once swilled outside Walla Walla. | NYT

Three tips from Jon Rimmerman for buying wine at your local shop.
AVOID THE MIDDLE
The eye-level rack at your market is usually dominated by shelf space “owned” by local distributors. Some of the top, smaller production examples are represented by tiny distributors that cannot pay slotting or marketing fees demanded by grocers for eye-level rack space. Beat them at their own game — look at top and bottom shelves or in poor visibility areas of a display — my gut tells me you will find a number of gems lying in wait.
ALCOHOL CAN FOOL YOU
High alcohol does not equal high interest. Alcohol can obfuscate the true nature and nuance of a wine — even with normally high-alcohol examples like Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Alcohol levels have risen to blackout levels over the last 10 to 15 years, spurred by a variety of sparks: a certain critic’s preference and possibly global warming. Don’t give in to the rise! Challenge yourself to look for reds under 14 percent and whites under 13 percent. My sweet spot is 12½ to 13½ percent for reds, 11½ to 12½ percent for dry whites.
TRUST OTHER DRINKERS
Use your smartphone to create a level playing field: community-based Web sites like Eric Levine’s CellarTracker (cellartracker.com) give you the opinions of your peers, those who have actually tasted the wine in question — not the opinion of a distributor or a magazine. You can easily pull them up while standing in front of a wall of a dozen unknown New Zealand sauvignon blancs, and all will start to make sense in a jiffy.

Jon Rimmerman sells $30 million worth of wine a year over e-mail. How? Well, let him tell you a little story about a young syrah he once swilled outside Walla Walla. | NYT

Three tips from Jon Rimmerman for buying wine at your local shop.


AVOID THE MIDDLE

The eye-level rack at your market is usually dominated by shelf space “owned” by local distributors. Some of the top, smaller production examples are represented by tiny distributors that cannot pay slotting or marketing fees demanded by grocers for eye-level rack space. Beat them at their own game — look at top and bottom shelves or in poor visibility areas of a display — my gut tells me you will find a number of gems lying in wait.

ALCOHOL CAN FOOL YOU

High alcohol does not equal high interest. Alcohol can obfuscate the true nature and nuance of a wine — even with normally high-alcohol examples like Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Alcohol levels have risen to blackout levels over the last 10 to 15 years, spurred by a variety of sparks: a certain critic’s preference and possibly global warming. Don’t give in to the rise! Challenge yourself to look for reds under 14 percent and whites under 13 percent. My sweet spot is 12½ to 13½ percent for reds, 11½ to 12½ percent for dry whites.

TRUST OTHER DRINKERS

Use your smartphone to create a level playing field: community-based Web sites like Eric Levine’s CellarTracker (cellartracker.com) give you the opinions of your peers, those who have actually tasted the wine in question — not the opinion of a distributor or a magazine. You can easily pull them up while standing in front of a wall of a dozen unknown New Zealand sauvignon blancs, and all will start to make sense in a jiffy.

©2011 Kateoplis