BECOME A MEMBER

Thousands of wines at your fingertips

Search database of wine reviews
Read about wines BEFORE they hit the stores
Match wines with foods

FREE MEMBERSHIP



GET TONY'S NEW EBOOK


TONY'S NOVELS
A gift for the literate wine-lover in your life – who may be you. Tony's murder mystery novels, set in the world of wine, are now available at a discount – autographed.

Find out more...

TUNE IN TO TONY
Listen to Tony

Listen to Tony talk about wine on 680 NEWS radio on Fridays at 10:48 am, on Saturdays at 2:48 am and 9:48 am, and on Sundays at 12:48 am and 1:48 pm.
Tony Aspler
Wine Reviews
Food & Wine Match
Personal Wine Cellar
Pocket Wine Cellar
Articles
Gourmet Recipes
Cocktails
Wine Primer
Links
More Tony Aspler
Tony's Books Tony's Books
Ontario Wine Awards
About Us About Us
Contact
Advertise

MEMBER LOGIN
E-mail Address or
Username
Password
 
Forget Password?
 

FREE MEMBERSHIP

POPULAR ARTICLES
All about sparkling wine Port wine 101 Pairing food and wine Pairing wine and cheese What wine to serve with chocolate Why we like to visit wine country A wine tour of Italy Germany and German wines Wine touring France: Cognac and Bordeaux Wine touring France: Burgundy A tour of California wine country

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 COCKTAILS

More Cocktails  

Fortify Yourself with VDN 

Cocktails Anyone?
by Sheila Swerling-Puritt

From time immemorial the world's winemakers have figured out many different ways to make sweet wines. One such method, made possible by the arrival of distillation in Europe about a thousand years ago, is fortification. Alcohol is added to fermenting grape must before all the sugar in it has been converted to alcohol by yeast. This "fortification" kills the yeasts, preserving the unfermented grape sugar, and boosts the overall alcohol content of the wine to the 15% to 20% range.

The best known sweet fortified wine is Port, made in oak-aged (e.g. tawny) and bottle-aged (e.g. vintage) styles. However, France has had an even longer history of producing this type of wine. In 1299, Catalan chemist Arnaud de Villeneuve of Montpellier University's school of medicine perfected the process and was granted a royal patent for its use in Roussillon.

In France, these wines bear the appellation "vin doux naturel" (VDN). They can be made for early drinking, fresh and tasting of the grapes from which they were made, or aged to impart buttery rancio and oxidative characters.

Muscat blanc à petit grain furnishes the best base material for white or amber (aged) VDN. The best known French V.D.N. regions are the southern Rhône's Muscat Beaumes-de Venise, St-Jean-de-Minervois, Lunel and Mireval from the Languedoc, and Rivesaltes, made in Roussillon.

The finest red (or "tuilé," tile coloured, if aged) VDNs are made with grenache nior. Rasteau in the southern Rhône Valley is home to some, but most are produced in sub-appellations of Roussillon: Banyuls, Maury, and Rivesaltes.

VDN can be sipped chilled on its own as an aperitif or dessert wine. VDNs partner well with dark chocolate, blue cheese and spicy exotic Asian cuisine. Whites work with all of these except for the dark chocolate. Both work with cheeses, desserts, foie gras and even poultry and roast meats.

That said, the delicious grape fruitiness of VDNs makes them wonderful for fruity spring and summer mixed drinks. SOPEXA recommends this long cocktail.

Oliver Twist

  • 2 oz. Rivesaltes Ambré
  • ½ oz. Grand Marnier Liqueur
  • 2½ oz. ginger ale
  • ¼ of an orange peeled
  • zest of an orange
  • mint leaf
  • 1 cocktail cherry
  • crushed ice
  1. Cut the orange into small pieces. Crush at the bottom of a highball.
  2. Add 1 Tbsp. of crushed ice.
  3. Pour the Grand Marnier and the Rivesaltes Ambré into the glass.
  4. Add ginger ale. Stir.
  5. Roll the zest around a toothpick , top with cherry, prick top of cherry and insert mint leaf.
  6. Place in cocktail.
  7. Sip with straw.

 

For more information, you can contact Sheila at spuritt@hotmail.com.

 

 

 

More Cocktails  
 
ALL MATERIAL © TONY ASPLER   WEBSITE BY MEDIRESOURCE INC.
PRIVACY POLICY