Wine, Beer & Spirits

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Understanding Wine Labels

Every bottle of wine must have a label, and that label must provide certain information about the wine. Some of the information on a wine label is required by the country where the wine is [more…]

Bartending Primer: Essential Recipes

Bartending For Dummies lists over a thousand drink recipes; in this article, you'll find a sampling of 26 recipes, from A to Z, that will help get you started on your bartending career. Some are classic [more…]

Attending a Wine Tasting Event

Finding out about wine is like space travel: Once you get going, there's no end in sight. Fortunately for those who choose to be educated wine drinkers, learning about wine is a fascinating experience, [more…]

Discover Italian Wines: The Top Red-Grape Varieties

Twenty-one red grape varieties compose Italy's major varieties for red wine. Four of these are especially important, either for the quality of wine they produce or for their dissemination throughout the [more…]

V.O., X.O.: Deciphering Cognac Labels

You've seen those Cognac abbreviations: V.O., X.O, V.S.O.P, and so on. What in the world do all those designations mean? The labels tell you how old the Cognac [more…]

Exploring Wine: Italy's Top White-Grape Varieties

Seventeen white grape varieties compose Italy's major varieties for white or sparkling wine production. Following are five particularly key varieties in their rough order of importance. [more…]

Filet Mignon with Irish Whiskey Sauce

This decadent recipe for Filet Mignon with Irish Whiskey Sauce is wonderful for a special dinner. The filet generally is considered the most tender cut of beef, but it lacks a little flavor when compared [more…]

Getting to Know Australian Wine

Make no mistake about it: Australia is one of the world powers of wine. It is famous for its fresh, fruity red and white table wines that manage to be extremely consistent in quality. The country has about [more…]

Debunking Italian Wine Myths

Sometimes ideas or stories take on lives of their own, and innocent Italian-wine lovers become unwitting believers in what are the wine equivalent of urban legends. Here are some examples of those myths [more…]

Setting Up Your Home Bar for Entertaining

When doing any sort of entertaining, one of the biggest hassles is trying to figure how to set up your bar. Here are a few tips for setting up your home bar. [more…]

Homebrewing Problem: No Fermentation

Fermentation problems occur frequently to homebrewers, and a common one is that the would-be beer just never started fermenting. Before you pour your homebrew down the sink, make sure the process actually [more…]

Make It Mexican: Tequila, Sangria, and Beer

The only thing that sounds like more fun than eating Mexican food is drinking Mexican drinks. Mexican beers, sangrias, and tequilas are so popular that they are the gateway for many people to tasting Mexican [more…]

Shaking Cocktails, Making Martinis

The main reasons for shaking drinks are to chill a cocktail, mix the ingredients, or put a head of foam on some cocktails.

As a general rule, you should shake all cloudy drinks [more…]

Discovering How to Sniff a Glass of Wine

The process of tasting a wine — of systematically experiencing all the wine's attributes — involves three steps: Looking at it, smelling it, and, finally, tasting it. Before you explore the smelling ritual [more…]

Assembling the Basic Tools for Bartending

The most important assets for any profession are the right tools. You need basic bar tools to mix, serve, and store your food and drink. Whether you're stocking a home bar or working as a professional, [more…]

What'll You Drink? Clear Spirits, Dark Spirits

All spirits (vodka, rum, tequila, bourbon, and so on) fall into one of two broad categories: clear spiritsand dark spirits. Clear spirits are the ones you can see though; dark spirits range in color from [more…]

Styles of Scotch Whisky

The Scots produce two broad categories of whisky: single malt whiskies (one whisky from a single distillery) and blended whiskies (a mixture of two or more whiskies from two or more distilleries). [more…]

Storing Your Leftover Wine

A sparkling-wine stopper, a device that fits over the opened bottle and keeps it closed, is really effective in keeping any remaining Champagne or sparkling wine fresh [more…]

Do-It-Yourself Strawberry-Flavored Vodka

Some vodka-aficionados make their own flavored vodka to ensure that the flavors are real and come from organically grown sources. Doing so also controls the amount of flavoring the vodka has. Here's a [more…]

Understanding Malting and Mashing Barley for Homebrewing

Of the four main ingredients used in homebrewing beer (barley, hops, yeast, and water), barley makes the biggest contribution. Barley gives beer its color, underlying flavor, sweetness, body, head of foam [more…]

Bourbon — an American Whiskey

Several different terms are used to classify the types of American whiskeys known as Bourbon and Tennessee whiskey. The following list cuts through the jargon: [more…]

What's the Time Commitment for Beginner Homebrewers?

If you're interested in homebrewing, you're understandably concerned with how much time it takes to brew beer at home. In addition to the hands-on activities such as cooking and bottling, you also face [more…]

Getting to Know London Dry Gins

London dry gin, the world's most popular gin type, is rarely made in London (only one distiller remains in the city) and is dry only in the sense that it lacks sugar to make it sweet. London dry gins tend [more…]

Snow Blower: A Drink to Drift Into

Regardless of the history or origin, punches of all kinds are an expected beverage at many of today's social gatherings. Whether you're an aspiring bartender or just someone who wants to be a good host [more…]

Choosing a White Wine

Choosing the right white wine to enjoy with dinner or to serve guests doesn't have to be hard. Try one of the white wines recommended here and save yourself some hassle. [more…]

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