Party Hosting Wine Tips

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What should I get? How much do I buy? Is it possible for a wine to be both elegant and economical? Joe Campanale and Jordan Salcito give tips and answer questions so you can ensure a party of perfect pours.

Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Jordan Salcito here with Joe Campanele at my favorite wine bar Anfora in the West Village of New York City, for eHow.com and we're talking about wines to serve at holiday parties. The worst thing that happens is if you're at a party and you run out of wine so something that I always like to do as a general rule is have at least one bottle for each person. Now if they're mine and Jordan's friends we might go up to two or three bottles but for most normal people if you have, if you plant for one bottle per person that should keep you covered for the entirety of the evening. Okay, so now we're having some people over for a holiday party and we decide we're going to streamline things and we're going to do one sparkling wine, one white wine and one red wine. What would be your choice for a really great sparkling wine for a holiday party? For me, during the holidays, a sparkling wine, I always go with rose. I think it just looks beautiful. It's festive, it's a little bit sort of more fruity and full in body, fruity does not mean sweet. I think it's an easier pairing if you have little bites of meat as well as chicken and certainly caviar. Now for white wines I think there's some really great values up in a small area of Northern Spain called Rias Baixas. It's a mouthful, it's really hard to say and the grape there is called Albarino but it's a really versatile wine. It has a little bit of fruit, a little bit of minerality, so it's a really good in between for people who like wines that are more flavorful and fruitful like Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc and people who don't like those sort of wines and I really think that you can get some great examples for under $15 a bottle, $10 to $15 a bottle, Rias Baixas Albarino for the whites. And for a red wine what would you serve? Well there are so many options but I think you know, one of my favorites right now and especially for a darker, a Wintry season, I'm loving Syrah and I think that you can get Syrah from the Northern Rhone Valley and you can get it from a place like Crozes-Hermitage and it's a lesser known a little bit less famous Appalachian where you get these great values. I think that's a really good point. A tip that I always tell people in order to find wine value is to choose a grape that you've never heard of, and chances are you're probably going to get a little bit more value than a very famous grape like Cabernet or Chardonnay, but Jordan's point was that if you choose a place that is a little bit more obscure, like Crozes-Hermitage, as opposed to a more famous place for the same grape, you'll also get some really great value out of it. We've talked about some of the more well-known grape varieties. What are some of your favorite off-the-beaten-path grapes? Well, you know, I just got back from a trip to the Republic of Georgia, which was a former Soviet satellite country, and they have the oldest wine making tradition in the entire world, and there are two very, very interesting grapes that are native to Georgia, one is a white grape now. It's a mouthful, be ready for it. It's called Rkatsiteli. Rkatsiteli, you've heard of it? Sounds like a rapper. Rkatsiteli, it's how they pronounce it, and they made some really interesting white wines with it. It's made in a fresh, clean, crisp style. It has a lot of minerality and it's really, really delicious, but what's really exciting is that a lot of producers are making Rkatsiteli in these ancient clay pots called anfora, and they're burying them in the ground. Anfora. Just like the wine bar, where we are, and they're making these really profound unique wines that in the industry we like to call these orange wines. They're obscure. They're made with skin contact and they're unique, but they're really, really fun, and then they have a local red grape called Saperavi. Saperavi. Saperavi, and it's reminiscent of somewhere between Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. It's dark and inky. It has a lot of tannin, but it's definitely in the old world style, meaning that it has a lot more Earth and acid as opposed to really, really ripe fruit. Thanks so much for watching. This is Jordan Salcito. I'm Joe Campanele. These are some of our favorite wines for entertaining for your holiday parties, and tune into eHow.com for more.

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