Showing posts from 2010

Wine Country International: Wonderful wine books for the holidays!

Wine Country International Magazine's Wonderful wine books for the holidays
By Christopher J. Davies

Exploring Wine: The Culinary Institute of America's Guide to Wines of the World, Completely Revised 3rd Edition

Authors: Steven Kolpan, Brian H. Smith, Michael A. Weiss
Rating: Must read!
Format: Hardcover, 792 pages
Price: $65.00
ISBN: 978-0-470-77063-3

CIA's latest, completely revised edition is the ultimate textbook for wine education.  Just shy of 800 pages, this book is an amazing resource for wine enthusiasts and professionals alike. You will need to eat your wheaties before attempting to pick up this book. But after reviewing its interesting chapters and scanning it's breathtaking photography, you will not want to put this book down.

Chapter one starts out logically covering growing grapes and the fundamentals of wine making. Chapters 2 and 3 are devoted to Wines of The New World and Old World. Every established and upcoming wine growing country an…

Denver International Airport Has Bold Development Plans For The Future

Denver International Airport Has Bold Development Plans For The Future
By Christopher J. Davies

The Denver International Airport, or DIA as locals call it, is just 15 years young. It's a super-sized airport comprising of 34,000 acres or 53 square, which makes it larger than Disney World in Orlando (25,000 acres).

Getting to DIA from downtown Denver takes a little time as its terminal is actually 24 miles away from Larimer Square. Once you enter DIA, the drive to the terminal is similar to entering Disney World in Orlando, sans the monorail. As you get closer to the terminal you see its enchanted white roof which depicts snow-capped mountains.

Having all of the space is a good thing. As in 15 short years, DIA has grown to be the world's tenth busiest airport and the fifth busiest airport in the United States. In 2009, 50 million passengers were transported through DIA making it one of the busiest hubs in the aviation world.

As a frequent world traveler, I made the decision to mo…

Taste of Elegance 2010 dishes by The Fort

Geoffrey Groditski, Executive Chef, The Fort
Shares his Dishes From the Taste of Elegance! 
Story and photos by Christopher J. Davies

The 2010 Denver International Wine Festival Taste of Elegance Chefs Food and Wine Competition took place ion Thursday November 4, 2010. The event celebrates the gold medal wines from the Denver International Wine Competition.

Twelve Master Colorado Chefs were assigned two gold medal wine each and had just 7 days to create custom paired dishes for 450 guests.

The dishes were tasted by a prestigious panel of judges: 
* Hosea  Rosenberg, Top Chef Season 5 Winner
* Kelly Liken, Chef/Owner Restaurant Kelly Liken-Vail, CO
* Claire  Walter, Food Critic & Author of "Culinary  Colorado"
* Wes Marshall, Wine Writer and Author of "What's a Wine lover To Do?"
* Tom Spilman District President, KeyBank

This year I was excited that one of my favorite restaurants, The Fort had agreed to let their chef participate! Better yet, Chef Geoffre…

The Capital Grille blends food and wine deliciously!

The Capital Grille blends food and wine deliciously!
Story and photos by Christopher J. Davies

Impeccable service, warm décor and ambience, delicious dry aged steaks and ultra fresh seafood (flown in daily) makes for the best culinary experience that you can get! The Capital Grille delivers this precisely like a fine Swiss clock!

The Capital Grille has one of the finest wine lists of any multi-store (40) national restaurant chain. Each restaurant boasts an impressive 5,000 plus bottle cellar. With this many wines, it is no surprise that they carry the annual Wine Spectator Award of Excellence!

Our local Capital Grille is located in Downtown Denver in historic Larimer Square. It's an amazing location with a bustling bar crowd. A favorite place for business lunches as well celebratory dinners.

Caymus Wine Pairing Dinner

The Capital Grille's wine programs are always educational and value added!
Recently we attended a Caymus Wine Dinner which was held in a private dinning room. T…

Wine Country International Best Food & Wine Books-Summer 2010

Wine Country International's Best Books for Summer 2010
By Christopher J. Davies
The three new books below classify as the ultimate "bible's" for their subject matter. If you are a foodie or aspiring wine lover, you should purchase these books and use them for reference.

Planet Barbecue!

Author:  Steven Raichlen
Rating: Excellent- Must Buy!
Format: Paperback, 638 pages
Price: $22.95
ISBN 978-0-7611-4801-2
Steven Raichlen is the king of BBQ education. He has built a virtual BBQ empire with more than 27 books on the subject, several television shows, the annual Barbecue University hands on seminar series, a line of barbecue products, plus more. If you have watched his shows or read any of his books, you'd love his straight forward approach to grilling.

In Planet Barbeque, Raichlen demystifies BBQ techniques and provides 309 recipes from 60 countries. This magnificent book breaks down recipes by salad, breads, meats, fish and desert. The recipes a…

Traveling overseas this summer? Don't forget travel insurance

Traveling overseas this summer? Don't forget travel insurance
Story and photos by Christopher J. Davies

We travel a lot for business and on journalistic assignments. While most of these trips are "fam trips" or familiarity trips, that are funded by tourism associations and governments, we always take out travel insurance for personal protection. Most people are not aware that their domestic health insurance is not accepted by international doctors and hospitals.

Our good friend, radio broadcaster Pierre Wolfe always takes out travel insurance before going on an international trip. Several years ago he and his wife Jean were strolling through Paris and Pierre suddenly tripped and fell on Jean, breaking her ankle. "You never know when something like this can happen". Fortunate for Jean, she was able to receive medical attention at the hospital and resume her trim, albeit on crutches. She returned home to Denver and recovered fully.

Some of the travel we take has…

Anatomy of a Beer Competition

Anatomy of a Beer Competition
Story and Photos by Christopher J. Davies

We have been running professional wine competitions since 2004. Our annual Denver International Wine Competition has grown to become one of the nation's well respected double-blind wine competitions with a rapidly growing amount of entries received every year.

Over the past several years Darcy and I have become friends with Keith Villa, the Brewmaster at Blue Moon Brewing a division of Miller/Coors. Keith is an interesting guy who also likes to make his own wine every year!

I was excited to learn that gourmet food and beer pairings are just starting to become popular in the US. I am talking about the typical beer and a hotdog at Yankee Stadium. I mean premium craft beers and gourmet food.

It should not be hard to do you think? After all, the Germans have been pairing brews with their cuisine for centuries. Want an nice beer and food pair? Visit the Hofbräuhaus in Munich and try Two original…

Inglorious Volcano!

Inglorious Volcano!
By Christopher J Davies

Imagine if Quentin Tarantino could solve everyone's flight problem with an alternate ending, just like he did when Hitler is killed in "Inglorious Bastards". He could have Lt. Aldo Rained fly a bomber directly into the volcano and cap it off with a major payload of TNT.

No that is not happening quite yet. Although the major European carriers are wishing for such a miracle as they are bleeding through billions of Euros.

St.Peters Square at sunset

My wife and I have been stranded in Rome since Saturday April 17th, playing the waiting game. Our carrier, our favorite airline, Lufthansa is overwhelmed with passenger requests and unable to give a clear picture of when we can expect to leave. They have no crystal ball.

Darcy on our terrace at The Hotel Hassler

When we first arrived in Rome, we stayed at the trend setting Hotel Haussler which is located near the Spanish Steps.We were there as members of the press to write a review which will …

"Stuck" in Rome, waiting is hard to do!

Greetings from Rome, Italy!

My wife Darcy and I are stranded in Rome, hoping to get back to Denver ASAP!

We have been traveling throughout Italy since April 7th. We are the publishers of Wine Country International magazine and also produce the Denver International Wine Festival. This year, we decided to attend the VinItaly show in Verona, which is the second largest wine show in the world, with 154,000 attendees this year. We also visited several other cities to produce stories and radio podcasts about travel, wine & cuisine. On this trip we visited Florence, Lucca, Castello Banfi in Montalcino, Perugia and Rome. We have been in Rome since Wednesday, having the time of our lives.

Darcy on the terrace of room 501 at the Hotel Hassler

For our first night we stayed at the Hassler which is found in the book "1000 things to do before you die!". Mr. Wirth the owner treated us like royalty. Our room #501, was one of the best locations in the hotel with an amazing birdseye view of t…