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The Wine Pair Podcast

The Wine Pair

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Recommended by Decanter Magazine who call The Wine Pair Podcast fun, irreverent, chatty, and entertaining! In each episode, husband and wife team Joe and Carmela learn about, taste, and give our honest review of three wines that are reasonably priced - meaning under $20 each - and easy to find. Our podcast is made for people who want to learn more about wine, find new wines to enjoy, and just want someone to talk about wine in a fun and funny way that regular people can understand. So, if th ...
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Summer is here, and that means cookouts with family and friends! If you are wondering what kind of wine would be a crowd-pleaser and pair well with food and fun, we have the perfect answer: Malbec! This juicy, well-balanced wine from Argentina is an inexpensive wine that doesn’t taste or drink like it's inexpensive. You may ask why would a wine fro…
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We introduce you to the B-FAST method in this minisode so you can become a white wine lover. What’s that you say, you’ve never heard of the B-FAST method? Well, that’s because it is a Wine Pair Podcast original! To love a thing, you have to learn about a thing, and you have to spend time with a thing. You can’t just go with your first impression! Y…
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When it comes to wine grapes, it’s ok to play the field, but it is a good idea to get to know the Noble Grapes. And the good news is - you may already be really familiar with them. That’s because many of the most popular wines and wine blends, both red and white, are often made of these grapes. But what makes them Noble? We’ll tell you! And does th…
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Jennie Murphy is, like her grandmothers who she named her winery after, a tough, resilient, and determined woman. After losing her home in the 2017 wine country fires, she started to seriously think about starting her own winery. We learned a ton about the winemaking world in our conversation with her - things that the average wine drinker never th…
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Yes, it’s true, they make Grenache is white as well as red! And it’s a great summer wine! Popular in the Catalonia area of Spain where it is known as Garnatxa Blanca, and in the Rhône area of France where it is often used as a blending grape and known as Grenache Blanc, White Grenache is a tasty, complex, and food friendly white wine that deserves …
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A 10 point wine in this episode! If you want a higher-class alternative to Prosecco at the same price point, then Cava is your wine. Cava is an underrated sparkling wine from Spain that is made in the same way as Champagne, but at a fraction of the cost. Cava is unique among sparkling wines - it is made with native Spanish grapes like Macabeo, Xare…
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It may be hard to pronounce and spell, but is it ever easy to drink! In this episode, we introduce you to a fun, quaffable, and not so serious wine called Txakoli which hails from the Basque region of Spain. Sometimes also called Txakolina, this slightly fizzy white wine is a perfect summer sipper. While tasting it, we had visions of sitting by the…
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Rioja is the big dog of Spanish wines, but the question on everyone’s lips is - how does the Costco Kirkland Signature Rioja Reserva stack up to other Riojas? Amiright?!? Well, without giving it away, we’re here to tell you that the Kirkland Signature Rioja is a worthy contender! But did it win in a knockout, or was it a draw? You’ll have to listen…
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When we say hidden gem, we are not kidding! When people think of Spanish red wines, they immediately think of Rioja, but don’t sleep on Priorat. Hailing from the Catalonia area of Spain, Priorat is a Grenache-based red wine blend that completely blew away our expectations! Rich, complex, and oh so drinkable, this is a wine that deserves a lot more …
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Pinot Noir can be a polarizing wine - some people love it, and some people just don’t get it. We think that happens for a few reasons. First, most wine drinkers have been trained to think that wines are supposed to taste like Cabernet Sauvignon - big, fruit forward, high in alcohol, and very tannic. Which is just not what a great Pinot tastes like.…
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Believe it or not, 73% of the wine purchased in the United States is sold for less than $8. So, there are a LOT of people drinking those wines! But they don’t often get reviews, and so we thought we would take some time to taste and review some value wines to see just how different they are from slightly more expensive wines. The results: one of th…
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Bordeaux is home to some of the most famous - and most expensive - wines in the world. But can you find a great wine at a great price?!? You can!!! There is no reason to spend more than $20 a bottle to find highly rated and very enjoyable wines from this classic region. In this episode, we focus on Left Bank wines, and we bring that up because Bord…
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If you’re like us, French wines can feel so confusing - and that’s exactly why we do these WTF episodes! This week, we dive into a great French white wine called Muscadet, which is not to be confused with Muscat or Moscato (which are, by the way, the same thing). Muscadet is a wine made in the Loire Valley from the grape Melon de Bourgogne - and th…
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Montepulciano d’Abruzzo is an easy wine to overlook. It is inexpensive, easy to find, and does not have the cachet that a Chianti or Barolo or Amarone has. But we are here to tell you that you should take a second look at this underappreciated and underrated Italian wine! In this episode, we tasted and reviewed three easy to find and reasonably pri…
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Trader Joe’s Platinum Reserve wines are meant to compare with wines twice their price, and are said to be top wines from top winemakers in some of the most prestigious wine-growing regions, but just how good are they really? We seek to answer that question to save you time and money. In this episode, we try three different Platinum Reserve wines fr…
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Ok, let’s be honest. Pinotage is a TRIP. It is like no other wine we have ever had before, and is flat out an experience that you have to try. You may not love it, or even like it, but you have to try it. Especially the Coffee Pinotage which in and of itself is an adventure (and is really a thing)! Pinotage is a wine that was invented in South Afri…
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Costco sells a TON of wine, but finding expert reviews of their Kirkland Signature wines can be very tricky. We are happy to help fill that void! Find out why few wine reviewers bother to review Costco Kirkland Signature wines, and where you can find some pretty reliable reviews for those wines. But, most importantly, find out what we think of the …
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Josh Cellars wine has been all over social media recently, but the real question is - is it worthy of the hype?!? We gave Josh Cellars an honest-to-goodness opportunity to impress us. We tasted and reviewed three different Josh Cellar wines just to make sure that we were getting a proper sense of the breadth of their products, and the results were …
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If you think you are not a fan of dessert wines, we believe we can change your mind - because we changed our own minds in this episode! Dessert wines are perfect for romantic evenings, but also a great excuse to slow down and extend a meal with family, friends, and loved ones. If you are looking for something special to do this Valentine’s Day, ser…
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Did you know they make wine in Michigan. Yes, yes it’s true! And not only that, they make REALLY GOOD wine in Michigan. Don’t believe us? Then you need to listen to our interview with Drew Perry from Simpson Family Estates, home of Good Harbor Vineyards and Aurora Cellars and we’ll set you straight! We had the great honor of interviewing Drew who, …
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Look, we were skeptical too, but it’s true. Not only do they make wine in Michigan, they are making great wine! If you are like us, you didn’t realize that there is a burgeoning wine industry in Michigan, and that some highly rated wines are coming out of their 5 AVAs. And, in this episode we’ll taste some of these well rated wines and tell you wha…
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The Campania region of Italy, famous for the city of Naples, the Amalfi Coast, and Mount Vesuvius, is also home to many of the most beloved Italian foods - like pizza! - but did you know it is also home to many of the best Italian wines?!? In this Italian wine adventure, we introduce you to a white wine called Fiano that you probably have not heard…
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In the last minisode we settled the question of whether or not size matters, and so in this minisode we are tackling the other big question - does shape matter when it comes to the wine bottle? The answer may surprise you! Wine bottles come in many different shapes, although there is one shape that sort of dominates them all, and the most common sh…
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What do you do if dry January - or some other dry month - is on your list, but you don’t want to give up wine? First, you need to listen to this podcast! We had the great pleasure of interviewing Duncan Shouler from Giesen Wines, and spoke to him in-depth about their zero-alcohol wines. Like many of the winemakers we talk to, Duncan did not start o…
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Welcome to our end of the year retrospective, review, and wrap for The Wine Pair Podcast! In this episode we review our highest and lowest rated wines of the year. Believe it or not, in 2023 we tasted and reviewed about 120 wines, and out of all of those wines, just a handful got ratings of 9 or 10, or got ratings of 4 or under. If you are looking …
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Buon Natale! The Feast of the Seven Fishes is an Italian-American tradition that got an interesting send-up in Season 2 of The Bear. How accurate is the “Fishes” episode of The Bear to our family Christmas Eve seafood feast? Well, let’s just say there are a few similarities and some really important differences. For starters, our family doesn’t thr…
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Think you know Prosecco?!? Not so fast! We bet you didn’t know that most of the Prosecco you are drinking is on the sweet side. Who cares, you say? We love it no matter what, you say? In this episode we are going to tell you why you should care, and why you should be seeking out the BRUT Prosecco! You dig?!? We all know that the Holidays are made f…
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Who doesn’t love buying wine at Costco? But have you ever wondered if the Costco Kirkland Signature wines are worth their low cost? Wel, that’s what this series of episodes is all about! On our last Costco “date” (and you need to listen in to understand what we mean by that) we picked up one of their Kirkland Signature K Vine Syrahs, and then we bo…
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Some people say that size matters, others say shape matters more. We are staying out of that discussion altogether. But, regardless of how you feel about the subject, there are more sizes of wine bottles than you may think, and in this minisode we demystify why there are so different sizes of bottles, why they almost always cost more than standard …
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Some critics have called Verdicchio the best Italian white wine, but we are betting many of you have never tasted it or even heard of it! Let’s just say, if you love Chardonnay, then Verdicchio is a wine you must try. Hailing from the Marche region of Italy, which we are also betting is a region you have never been to and maybe never even heard of,…
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Why are we Bonkers for Beaujolais this Thanksgiving? Because Turkey Day was made for Beaujolais. Hey, that even rhymes! Beaujolais is considered the ultimate Thanksgiving wine, but why? Well, we’ll tell you if you listen to this episode, but as a little amuse bouche, here’s something to chew on. First, the fruity flavors of the wine pair perfectly …
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Thai food is one of the world’s best cuisines, but pairing wine with it is difficult for many reasons - primarily its spiciness. In this episode, we break down how you can make finding a wine to drink with Thai food easy, and we review several different types of wines that make great pairings. We also talk about why some people bristle at the conce…
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Want to buy a vineyard and become a winemaker in Burgundy as an American with no experience in winemaking? Impossible! Or is it? Despite the longest of odds, Alex Gambal did it, and did it successfully. And now he has written a book about it called Climbing the Vines in Burgundy. It’s a story of hard work, perseverance, and positivity - pushing thr…
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Looking for something to spice up your wine life a little bit? We’ve got just the thing! Gewürztraminer is a different kind of white wine. This ain’t your typical light bodied, low alcohol summer sipper. This is a big bodied, high alcohol Fall juggernaut that is not made for the faint of heart. Gewürztraminer is a difficult grape to grow, but it ma…
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Not sure if it was the wine or the candy or the fact that we recorded it on Friday the 13th, but we lost our minds in this episode! Halloween is the perfect time for wine (and, heck, what time isn’t perfect for wine?!?!), but not just any wine - spooky wine! Now, we don’t mean that it tastes haunted, what we mean is that it has the perfect combinat…
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Maybe we’re just crazy, but we have to believe that you can find a high quality Pinot Noir for a reasonable price. Believe us when we say - it’s not easy! In our third foray into trying to find high QPR Pinot Noirs, we try once again to help you find a wine you’ll like that won’t bust your wallet. We also talk about how Pinot Noirs from Burgundy ar…
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If you have been wondering if you should try Pét-Nat, we are here to tell you unequivocally - YES! Pét-Nat wines are natural sparkling wines that are like your friendly weird cousin - different, entertaining, sometimes exciting, and just fun to be around. Considered to be the oldest form of sparkling wine, Pét-Nats are low-intervention sparklers th…
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We know what you’re thinking - but it’s true! They make wine in New York - and some really good wines, too! In fact, New York state is the third largest producer of wine in the US - bet you didn’t know that, either! In this episode, we focus on the Finger Lakes region and specifically dry Rieslings, which are fantastic wines for Autumn. We found th…
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Don’t get us wrong - wine doesn’t have to be serious, but we do think that Rosé can sometimes be treated as an unserious wine, and that’s just not fair. Over the course of our podcast, we have come to truly appreciate Rosé wines, and one of our very favorite types of Rosés is Rosé made from Pinot Noir. Rosé has gotten a bad rap in part because some…
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We had the pleasure of spending time with Karl Weichold, the estate winemaker at Stoller Family Estate, located in the famous Dundee Hills in Oregon. Karl shares his story of how he became a renowned winemaker, starting with a degree in Biochemistry and Genetics from Texas A&M, to working at an Italian restaurant where he first fell in love with wi…
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It’s the most wonderful time of the year - football season! And football season means tailgating, and tailgating means wine! Wait, what?!? Did we say wine? You bet your sweet pigskin we did! While beer may still be the beverage of choice for most, we think wine is a perfect fit for all of the food and fun that you find at a tailgate - whether at th…
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Ever noticed that sometimes a wine bottle will call out that it comes from a specific vineyard? And when you’ve noticed that on the bottle, have you ever wondered, hey, what’s the big deal? Well, we are here to tell you if it's a big deal or not. If you have been around wine nerds, you know that they start geeking out about single vineyard wines, a…
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Been wondering just what the heck Orange Wine is? Well, drop on in and we’ll tell you what’s what! You can kind of think of Orange Wine as a cousin to Rosé wine, but there are some key differences - differences in the grapes, the production, and the tastes of the wines. If you have been hesitant to try Orange Wine, we’re here to tell you you should…
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Our goal in life is to find high QPR wines to share with you all, and in Monastrell, we think we have found a QPR Superstar! Two of the wines we tasted were $10.99, and they way, way, way outpunch their price. Stop wasting your money on overpriced California Cabs, and discover this wine which gives you much more bang for your buck! Also known as Mo…
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We are off on another Italian Wine Adventure, and this time we bring you a wonderful white wine from Umbria called Orvieto. Wait, what’s that you say? You’ve never heard of Orvieto? Well, we need to change that! Orvieto is a white wine made from a blend of grapes - most predominantly Grechettto and Trebbiano Toscano (aka Procanico and Ugni Bianco) …
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In this special episode we have the honor to meet and speak with Rita Pinto, the CEO of Quinta do Pinto winery. Rita’s story is an incredible tale of family, love, passion, and hard work. Truly a family-run winery, as well as a mostly woman-run winery, Quinta do Pinto makes both new and traditional Portuguese wines in a low intervention, sustainabl…
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Seriously - $4.99?!? How good can a wine actually be at $4.99?!? Well, we are here to tell you, and you may just be surprised by what we have to say! In this episode we do a side-by-side comparison of the Costco Kirkland Signature Grave Pinot Grigio with two other easy to find Pinot Grigios to see how it stacks up. Pinot Grigio is a wine that some …
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California Cabernet Sauvignon gets all the attention, but a good California Zinfandel is a thing of beauty! Often overlooked and definitely underrated, when done well, Zinfandel is a velvety, rich, complex, juicy, food friendly wine. All that being said, there are some California Zinfandels that give their brothers and sisters a bad name, and we wa…
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Do not be fooled by the name! Petite Sirah is anything but petite, and if you enjoy big, jammy red wines, this is the wine for you! A distant cousin of Syrah, Petite Sirah is a wine all its own. Petite Sirah is a California wine through and through, with bold flavors and an amazingingly rich mouthfeel - and in fact, the grape is grown almost exclus…
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We never thought we'd say it, but because of this episode, we are now GSM fans! GSM blends are one of the two classic red wine blends known all over the world - so they are definitely something you need to have in your repertoire. But we will admit it - red wine blends can be so tricky because very often the winemaker doesn’t tell you exactly what …
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