Tuesday, April 29, 2014

25B I hate flutes continues with Walter's great --

25B I hate flutes continues with Walter's great comments...

Dear Madeleine

....my preference when consuming Champagne depends on the occasion (wedding/toasts or for an intimate evening) my preference would with a "Maria Antoinette's"c champagne
coupe ! However enjoying a glass at the bar with friends or by myself I prefer the champagne flute !

I don't think it is a black or white decision when it comes to choose the proper glassware for this significant nectar.

Enjoy your day with a glass of your favored champagne !!



Champagne flute[edit]

Champagne flute and bottle
The champagne flûte (fr. Flûte à Champagne) is a stem glass with a tall, narrow bowl. The bowl of a flute may resemble a narrow wine glass as seen in the illustration; or a trumpet shape; or be very narrow and straight-sided.
As with other stemware, the stem allows the drinker to hold the glass without affecting the temperature of the drink. The bowl is designed to retain champagne's signaturecarbonation, by reducing the surface area at the opening of the bowl. The flute has largely replaced the champagne coupe or saucer, the shape of which allowed carbonation to dissipate even more rapidly than from a standard wine glass. Its smaller diameter also allows more flutes to be carried on a tray.
Nucleation in a champagne glass helps form the bubbles seen in champagne. Too much nucleation will cause the carbonation to fizzle out quickly. A smoother surface area will produce fewer bubbles in the glass, and more bubble texture in the taster's mouth.
While most commonly used for sparkling wines, flutes are also used for certain beers, especially Belgian lambic and gueuze, which are brewed with wild yeast and often fruited. The tart flavor of these beers, coupled with their carbonation, makes them similar to sparkling white wines, and the champagne flute an ideal choice of glassware.

Champagne coupe
The champagne coupe or champagne saucer

25A I Hate Flutes

25A I Hate Flutes continued.  Look what Rita Petler found for her Champagne.  Gorgeous.   Magnificent. Yum. Wishing I had some. 
If you have a particular Champagne glass please send a photo.
Bubbly day to all of you.  Madam Champagne. 

Caesar is off on Zephyros looking for some of these.  RITA where did you find this?

Monday, April 28, 2014

25 I hate flutes

25.  I hate flutes.  How about You?


Have you ever tried to drink Champagne from one of those tall, narrow things called “flute”?   Perhaps your nose got stuck; or tossing your head so far back so as to get a taste from that prison you choke as the bubbles rush down your throat?  A real joy, the flute.    Yes?

NO!    Nice for flowers, but horrid to drink from.

I hate flutes.  There I have said it.  And maybe am shouting it, but thankfully you cannot hear my rant.  I know, I know:  I have often proselytized restaurants into setting their tables with Champagne glasses, so as to suggest to guests their Champagne-by-the-glass choices.  But I never meant for them to set their tables with flutes.  They are unsteady, they are ungraceful, they are mean to Champagne’s bubbles and mean to you and me when we try to drink from them.  I hate flutes. 
How about a real wine glass?  Hasn’t it occurred to you when opening that wonderful bottle filled with six atmospheres of pressure, filled with flavors of flowers, of brioche, of toast, of minerals, of lime and other citrus, of cherries and strawberries, that such a wine should be received into something generous and capable of offering all that is captive in that sturdy bottle to you and your guests? 

I wonder what sort of person, surely one with the mentality of a jailer, thought up the ever taller and narrower flute?  That person must be guilty of hating Champagne, and Champagne’s divine deliverer of its essence, all those bubbles.   
I hate flutes.
But give me the tall stemmed kylix. 
Give me the return of the Bronze Age kylix, such as what King Nestor enjoyed all his local and imported wines in.    (Check out the tall-stemmed, open coupe "kylix".  Love the "ears" for a good grip.) Only make it in crystal, not pottery.   A crystal kylix.  That’s what I dream of.  But close to perfection is the tall, so-called open-tulip that offers sufficient room for a generous whiff of the aromas buoyed on bubbles rising and breaking over the surface.    It is deep enough and round enough so a good swirl does achieve what it should, an opening up of flavors and aromas.  It is deep enough and round enough so the customer does not expect an overflowing glass; a good pour leaves room for expansion of the wine.  But then there’s another favorite, the grandly theatrical Coupe.   I have a friend who adores serving Champagne in her Lalique coupes.   The bubbles break and break on the larger surface like a starry night.  I know; I know:  complainers always state how a coupe dissipates the bubbles and makes the champagne flat. 

I challenge anyone to stay around looking at the bubbles as they grow flat and the Champagne warm in the coupe.  Who would do such a barbaric thing?  The coupe is so inviting most people slurp and slurp and soon it is as empty as when new, until it’s filled anew with stars full of flavors.  Bon Appetit!  And Sante to the coupe, the kylix, the open-tulip:  to all generous proportioned elegant glasses from which to enjoy the greatest of drinks, Champagne.

I hate flutes.  And CO2 hates flutes too.   Bye bye flutes.

Do I hear the sound of millions of flutes being shattered?

Madam Champagne@ http://champagnetoujours.blogspot.com

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

24Norbert Wabnig and Cheese Store of BH are defintely CO2!

24. Norbert Wabnig and his Cheese Store Beverly Hills are definitely C02!

Early each morning in Beverly Hills when most neighbors on the grand 90210 Drives are sipping their lattes and reading the morning papers, behind a not very large but very well-known store-front, cheeses are getting ready for their day.    A cacophony of languages comes from the Cheese Store Beverly Hills; it’s a new day with exciting places for cheeses and their friends, wines, to go.

Probably on Canon at Spago Wolfgang has his ovens stoking, and his chefs chopping; and around the corner in the Beverly Wilshire Hotel silent feet push gliding gueridons with morning coffee room-service.  But at Tiffany, at Dior, at Gucci and Chanel, in the vaults of Barakat’s ancient worlds’ antiquities, and even at Galerie Michael, silence reigns as precious objects still sleep dreaming of their worth.

But over there at 419 North Beverly things are fast and furious, where they know exactly how much each moment is worth: getting all those cheeses perky, accepting delivery of crisp just baked Dolce Forno baguettes and ciabattas;
 weighing and putting away for further aging new-arrivee cheeses from the far corners of the globe, preparing catering trays for the day’s events, and creating cheesy gift-baskets for country-wide shipping or local delivery, all conducted in numerous languages.  (a total of nine languages are spoken by the staff of The Cheese Store Beverly Hills, five by Raffi.) 

It is good Norbert Wabnig and his crew are there so early.  Norbert Wabnig and general manager and food and wine expert Toni Princiotta’s deliveries must come first thing after dawn every day in this 90210 emporium of cheese, the finest for sure in the United States and the oldest in continual existence:  cheese will not wait when it is ready.  
  Soon wine merchants are waiting downstairs for Tony and Norbert and Erik to taste and assess wines for Tony’s Wine Corner. 
Dominic is busy making his fresh pastas and sun-dried tomatoes,
his stuffed peppers, and finding the finest and most delicious of Sicilian oils and olives to import. 
Erik is deciding which wine to pair with which cheese this week.  And Shivon is on the computer taking and sending orders.  
Then there are the wine and cheese seminars to prepare.  Oh this is a busy place and all that cheesy busy leaves little time for Norbert to play his piano which presides grandly over the whole establishment.

In the olden days when Norbert Wabnig, musician from New Orleans arrived in Beverly Hills in need of another job to pay the rent, way back there in 1974, he happened upon Colonel Ross and his Cheese Shop.  N’Awlins boy Norbert must have been giddy working for a Colonel.  And soon he became Colonel, buying out Ross in 1978. 

In those days the Kingdom of Cheese was grand, but much smaller than today’s.  Norbert and Tony search and travel the globe to find the best and most exotic.  And today there are 300 cheeses to choose among.

Because Norbert’s personality matches in rareness his talents, Norbert is like Champagne, filled with life and sparkle.    And when the moment strikes the right chord, Norbert drops the cheeses and sprints upstairs to his baby grand.  Recently he and Ruthie Grahm, mother of that wine scalawag Randall, composed the theme song for friend and neighbor down on Canon Drive, Wolfgang Puck and his Meals on Wheels celebration which raises millions annually for feeding those in need.

“Beyond Cheese” some areas of the store could read.  Here is where you will find Imperial Golden Osetra caviar, and white honey from Hawaii; truffles, black and white, in season; and the finest of olive oils from every olive region.    A morning at Cheese Store Beverly Hills is a veritable feast of gastronomic richness.   Beatle Fan and look-alike, Norbert Wabnig, is truly Champagne-like, filling the world with more star-dust. 
Julius Caesar agrees with me: 
nunc bibendum est, Norbert.  A true Champagne personality!