trešdiena, 2014. gada 26. novembris

Jura wines

Jura wine, is French wine produced in the Jura d`epartement, located between Burgundy and Switzerland. It is a small wine region which is responsible for some traditional and highly idiosyncratic wine styles. This cool climate wine region produces wines with some similarity to burgundy and Swiss wine ( Blog post on December 24 ).
Jura wines are distinctive and unusual wines, the most famous being vin jaune, which is made by a similar process to Sherry ( Blog post on December 10), developing under a flor like strain of yeast. This is made from the local Savagnin ( Blog post on December 17 ) grape variety. The wine is produced by picking the Savagnin as ripe as possible, in some cases becoming a sort of late harvest wine, and after fermentation storing it in Burgundian aging barrels for over 6 years. The barrels are filled up to the top and allowed to evaporate, reducing the volume in the barrel and  creating an air pocket at the top of the barrel. During the time wine oxidizes and grows a film of yeast that is similar, but not the same strain, as the Jerez region flor. The wine is then bottled in a signature clavelin wine bottle. Other grape varieties include 
* Poulsard ( Blog post on December 24 )
* Trousseau ( Blog post on December 31 )
Other wine styles found in Jura includes a vin de paille made from Chardonnay, Poulsard and Savagin.

The climate of ra is continental with many similarities to Burgundy but can be more aggressively cold, especially in the winter time. Ripeness levels of the grapes is always a concern for winemakers of the area and harvest times are often delayed as long as possible to try to achieve the highest levels possible.

The main grapes of region is Chardonnay.
French winemakers don't do more experiments than Jura wines, it wouldn't be cheap experience, but from all my wine loving heart I suggest You to try at least one of Jura wines.

otrdiena, 2014. gada 25. novembris

Zolitūde Tragedy

WARNING: I written this few days ago and thinked about publishing this a lot. There is nothing positive, so if You cant/don't want read sad content please go to someaone other blog. It's sad but this is a part of me, and my blog too.

'' Sometimes our light goes out, but is blown again into instant flame by an encounter with another human being ''  A. Schweitzer

I tought about hard times a lot lately, maybe it is because the biggest tragedy first anniversary, in LV. Maybe it's because my life isn't the best at the moment, it's not bad at all, it's just the feeling something isn't right. I feel like I don't have enough time, talent or strenght to do all this. I don't know, but I believe that anyone, even the most motivated people in the all world sometimes feel like this. It's nothing too serious, because I know - tomorrow I will feel like a superwoman who can do anything... I am trying to read some uplifting quotes to help myself remember that life isn't bad, that this moment is just some lecture for my future life, or something that let's me realise how blessed I am for all good things happened in my life. I know it all but today I feel like I can see only fear, disappointment, pain.... but the stronger feeling is anger. I even can say that I hate this situation.
It was a bit more than year ago, when tragedy happened ( you can read about tragedy here ). I was at my work and when I heard about it first, I had only one thought in my mind - my brother, he lived about 10 mins away from shopping center. I was sooo happy that he wasn't there. But 54 mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, sons, daughters, friends was...

ceturtdiena, 2014. gada 20. novembris

Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is red wine grape variety of the species Vitis Vinifera. The name may also refer to wines created predominantly from Pinot Noir grapes.
Pinot Noir grapes are grown all around the world, mostly in the cooler regions, but the grape is chiefly associated with the Burgundy region of France. It's one of the France's ancient grapes dating back to the 1st century. Cistercian Monks cultivated the grape in Burgundy and many of the oldest monasteries still stand.
It is widely considered to produce some of the finest wines in the world, but is a difficult variety to cultivate and transform into wine. The grape clusters are usually small and difficult to ripen evenly. The grape itself is weak, suffering from a variet of diseases and it's genetics make it highly susceptible to mutation. Despite the difficulty in growing the grape, prices for a bottle of Pinot Noir are generally more than a similar quality red wine.
When young, wines made from Pint Noir tend to have red fruit aromas of cherries, raspberries and strawberries. As the wines age, Pinots have the potential to develop vegetal and "barnyard" aromas that can contribute to the complexity of the wine. In Burgundy, Pinot Noir is usually very herbaceous and light. Earthy aromas dominate including smells similar to a brown paper bag full of mushrooms or wet leaves. 
Pinot Noir is also used in the production of Champagne.
In addition to being used for the production of sparkling and still red wine, Pinot Noir is also sometimes used for ros`e still wines, Beaujolais Nouveau styled wines, and even vin gris white wines.
Pinot Noir wines are pale in color, translucent and their flavors are very subtle.
I do like to think of Pinot Noir as a catch all food pairing wine. It is light enough for salmon but complex enough to hold up to some richer meat including even duck.

trešdiena, 2014. gada 19. novembris

Côtes du Rhône

Cōtes du Rhōne is a wine growing Appellation d'Origine Contrōl`ee ( AOC ) for the Rhōne wine region of France, which may be used throughout the region, also in those areas which are covered by other AOCs.
Cōtes du Rhōne are the basic AOC wines of the Rhōne region, and exist as red, white and rose wines, generally dominated by Grenache - reds and roses or Grenache Blanc - whites. 
Wines have been produced in this region since preRoman times, but the rules for Cōte du Rhōne thus formed the very early basis of today's nationwide AOC system.
At the generic level, the official AOC Cōted du Rhōne region streches 200 km from Vienne in the North to Avignon in the south and from the foothills of the Massif Central in the west to the fore-slopes of the Vaucluse and Luberon mountains east of the town of Orange.
There are two sub regions or Rhōne wines:
1. Cōtes du Rhōne septrentrional in the northern part of the region from Vienne to Valence. The wines are cultivatedd on very steep slopes making the harvest extremely arduous. The grapes are manually picked and have to be hauled up the hillside on trolleys.
2. Cōtes du Rhōne m`eridional from Mont`elimar to Avignon in the southern latitudes, produced for about 125 communes. The great majority of these are cultivated on the eastern side of the Rhōne between the river bank near the town of Orange.The wines here are anchored by grenache noir but typically include other grapes such as Syrah and Mourvedre. 
* The reds range in color from deep crimson and ruby to almost purple and are generally full bodied with rich but smooth tannins. They all go very well with rich meat dishes.
* The whites range from dry with a tang of citrus to fuller, like rounder wines which caan be consumed as an aperfit.
Rhōne does not have an official classification using "Grand Cru" or similar terms, in difference to Bordeaux or Burgundy. As You gess most are red blends based on Grenache or Syrah and the vineyards are planted on a variety of different soils. Production rules are not as strict as other levels but wines must have a minimum 11% alc. and be made from the 21 sanctioned grape varieties. These wines are easy drinking, food loving wines that are perfect for everyday. The white and ros`e blends are equally delicious too, even if a little harder to find.

svētdiena, 2014. gada 16. novembris


Chardonnay is a green skinned grape variety used to make wine. It originated in the Burgundy wine region of eastern France but it is grown wherever wine is produced, starting from England to New Zealand. Chardonnay grapes are relatively hardy to survive in a variety of environments. Chardonnays have also become very popular, probably the most popular of all white wines today.Another eason why Chardonnay does so well is that is an agressive plant, Quickly growing very large leaves to take in the sun's energy.
The Chardonnay grape itself is very neautral, with many of the flavors commonly associated with the grape being derived from such influences as terrior and oak, fresh fruit flavors of apple, pear, tropical and citrus, melon. In general Chardonnay produces wines, which are dry to medium dry. 
If You like the idea of butter in your glass, you'll love the classic style of oak aged Chardonnay wine, but if something like Pinot Grigio make you feel attempted, than unoaked kind of Chardonnay is perfect for you.
It's mysterious how can a single grape offer us such a variety of flavors?
Well, in addition to the difference in winemaking - oak vs. non oak, ripeness has a lot to do with flawor. A very ripe Chardonnay will have flavors more towards tropical fruits like pineapple, guava or mango. But barely ripe Chardonnay will have green apple and even lemon flavors.
The smell of vanilla, butter, coconut and dill are all atributes of oak aging, however, the texture that some Chardonnays have, can be described as Oily, Creamy, Waxy, Buttery, .... Textures like this are from special kind of fermentation. the wine grows. Chardonnay can be classified into four taste and aroma categories.
Most believe the flavors are present because of the soil and climate in which wine grows. Broadly speaking, warm regions such as California, Chile and much of Australia tend to give more tropical flavors, but temperate zones, such as southern Burgundy or northen New Zealand create wines with stonefruit notes. The very coolest Chardonnay vineyards such as Chablis, Champagne and Germany, lean towards green apple aromas.
Mineral descriptions such as chalk, wet stones and crushed seashells also find their way into Chardonnay tasting notes.
Altrough most famous for it' s still, dry wines, Chardonnay is used to produce an impressively diverserange of wine styles. The variety is put in sparkling wines all over the world. Chardonnay is an important component of many sparkling wines around the world, including Champagne, when it is usually paired with Pinot Noir. Canada even produces sweet Chardonnay Ice wine.
Chardonnay will pair well with poultry dishes, seafood or heavy cream or butter based recipes, also guacamole and salads, garlic and shrimp dishes.

Have a nice Wine apetite :D

piektdiena, 2014. gada 14. novembris


Cognac is a town in France, but mostly this name is known for drink named after this town. It's produced in wine growing region surrounding in the French Departments of Charente and Charente - Maritime.
The region authorised to produce cognac is divided into six zones.
Cognac producing regions should not be confused with the northeasten region of Champagne, altrough they do share a common etymology - both being derivations of a French therm of chalky soil.

Cognac is a type of brandy, after the distillation and during the aging process, is also called eau de vie. It is produced by doubly distilling white wines produced in any of the designated growing regions.

The white wine used in making cognac is very dry, acidic and thin. Though it has been characterized as undrinkable, it is excellent for distillation and aging. It may be made only from  a strict list of grape varieties.

After the grapes are pressed, the juice is left to ferment for two or three weeks. At this point, the resulting wine is about 8% alcohol.

The age of the cognac is calculated as that of the youngest component used in the blend. The blend is usually of different ages and from different local areas.

According to the interprofessional French institution BNIC, the official quality grades of cognac are following:
V.S. ( very superior ) or three stars - designates a blend in which the youngest brandy has been stored for at least two years in cask.
V.S.O.P. ( very superior old pale ) designates a blend in which the youngest brandy is stored for at least four years in a cask, but the average wood age is much greater.
XO ( extra old ) designates a blend in which the youngest brandy is stored for at least six years but on average for upwards of 20 years.
The names of the grades are in English because the historical cognac trade, significantly involved the British.

ceturtdiena, 2014. gada 6. novembris

trešdiena, 2014. gada 5. novembris


The Champagne wine region is a historic province in the northeast of France. The region's reputation for wine production dates back to the Middle Ages when Pope Urban II, a native Champenois, declared that the wine of Ay in the Marne department was the best wine produced in the world.

The area is best known for the production of the sparkling white wine.

Europian Union law and the laws at the most countries reserve the term "Champagne" exclusively for wines that come from this region located about 160 km / 100 miles/ east of Paris.The Champagne winemaking community, under the auspices of the Comit`e Interprofessionnel du vin de Cgampagne ( CIVC ), has developed a comprehensive set of rules and regulations for all wine produced in the region to protects it's economic interests. It can also limit release of Champagne to market to maintain prices. As a general rule, grapes used must be
Most Champagnes, including Rose wines, are made from a blend of all three grapes, altrough 
* Blanc de Blanc Champagnes are made from 100% Chardonnay . A French term means "white from whites".
*Blanc de Noir Champagnes are made solely from Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier or a mix of the two. A French therm means "white from blacks".
Contrary to legend and popular belief, Dom P`erignon did not invent sparkling wine, but he did make important contributions to regions most famous Champagne wine. In France the first Champagne was created accidentally, the pressure in the bottle led it to be called "TheDevil's wine", as bottles exploded or corks popped.
In the 19th century Champagne was noticeably sweeter than the Champagnes of today.
Most of the champagne produced today is "NON Vintage", meaning that it is blended of grapes from multiple vintages.

otrdiena, 2014. gada 4. novembris

My money saving tips 1-10.

It's just tips that help's me organize my budget. Hope You will find something useful :)

1. Keep track of my spending - keep receipts, credit card records to review what I've purchased and constantly ask myself if it makes sense to relocate some of this spending to a piggy bank.
2. Bring lunch to work. I think I don't have to explain how it saves money?

3.Shop for food with a list - as I am a list person it's the easiest for me :)
4. Buy clothing items in terms of quality and only then look at price. An inexpensive shirt wouldn't last for me as well and long than a quality but more expensive one. I always consider fabric, stitching, wash ability, ...
5. Plan gift giving. I have a list of all my family member and friend birth days and other celebrations. I have a time to decide most thoughtful gifts and I can craft them by my self.
6. Take care of myself - I'm trying to sleep enough, wash my hands very frequently, healthy food and regular exercise is my daily round.
7. Swap books, music, magazines or DVD's. I'm sharing with my friends, brother and parents. At the end no one knows which book is mine, witch magazine is mom's, etc. :D
8. Wait for sales. everyday products I'm buying a head, for example - if I see rise cheaper than average I'm buying few packages. And remember - buying bulk almost always saves money. And there is one more sub-tip - go grocery shopping on a full stomach! If not, at least for me, I will buy any chips, chocolate, banana and soda I will see.
9. Drink a lot of water - it's a win/win tip. It's good for my body and saves money, because soda and juices is a lot more expensive.

10. Bike whenever it is possible - at first I like to use my bike, I like to be outdoors, I don't like to be behind the wheel, public transport in Riga is fairly expensive.

Good Luck <3

pirmdiena, 2014. gada 3. novembris

Simple little hacks how I motivate myself every day I MOTIVATIONAL MONDAY

1. Get enough sleep - I can do nothing if I feel lethargic, some days I energize myself with a little nap. Naps improve working memory, it's involved in working on complex tasks where you have to pay attention to one thing while holding a bunch of other things in memory. It's, basically, my everyday situation :D
2. Have positive self talking in morning.
3.Get some music to rock my soul. We all know that happy music makes happy faces seem even happier :)
4. Set milestones - as we all know I'm a BIG list person, I like to set my goals and stick with them. For me it's easier to do things I don't like but have to do. Sometimes I break bigger projects in smaller chunks and have few goals. I think it's easier to see progress.
5. Create a nice and comfortable working space - I like pretty clear desk, without any things that can take my attention, except plants - I just like them, they make me happy.
6. Read books - it works for deepening my knowledge and for chilling, I am a book person so I can always find some benefit of book reading...
7. Stop worrying about "WHAT IF". I just do what I can as best as I can. There always will be some things that can go wrong - so if you think like 'what if' person you better do nothing - then nothing can go wrong