As Easter nears..

by Elizabeth Cooper in Wine & Beer

As Easter nears, the conversation always seems to gravitate to the question: What does a bunny with a basket of eggs have to do with a religious holiday? With a bit of research, this is what I found: The tradition of bringing and hiding Easter eggs is said to have begun in Europe, in the Holy Roman empire. The regions of Alsace and Rhineland were supposedly the first to practice Easter egg hunts. Early in the 17th century, a German paper wrote about this new tradition, effectively creating the first documentation of the practice. Nearly two hundred years later, the idea of making the eggs into a candy (as opposed to hard boiled eggs, which were much less fun) sprang into fruition, and the first edible Easter eggs were made. They were created by forming pastries and sugar into an egg shape, and dying them with the natural colorings that were available at the time. In Germany, the Easter bunny got his first name—”Osterhase.” He was originally created as an Easter counterpart to the Kris Kringle of Christmas time. Children would build nests out of household items and the “Osterhase,” or Easter Bunny, would bring the newly created Easter eggs to them. The Easter Bunny was created as a rabbit because the pagan symbol of fertility was the rabbit, and springtime was associated with fertility. Eggs were chosen for the same reason, because they were associated with fertility and spring. Once the Easter egg tradition had spread throughout Europe, the same Germans who had first documented the practice in Europe brought it to the United States when they settled in the Dutch territories of Pennsylvania. There they continued their practice of the tradition.

Easter eggs have been created in hundreds of different colors, for as many different reasons. The Eastern Orthodox communities have always made them red because they feel it best represents the blood of Christ, which is what Easter is based upon in the first place. Other people have made them green because they feel it best represents springtime and the new growth that comes with it. What does this have to do with wine, beer and all things beverage? Not much really, I was just curious and thought it would be fun to share. But come to our “Easter Dinner” Uncorked tasting and see what the wine department staff has chosen to go with traditional Easter fare!


Featured Wine: Come and check out our staff favorites for Easter dinner. Pick out some delicious catering from the Deli and swing by the wine department where we’ll pair wines with it perfectly. We’re still making room for our new spring selections, so come in and see the deals.


Featured Beer:

The following selections celebrate ACC strongholds as we enter the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. They will all be discounted 15% throughout the tournament.

Hotrod Red
Aviator Brewing Co. – Fuquay-Varina, NC
Style: Classic Irish Red Ale
ABV: 6.1%
This ale is feisty and a bit hoppy. There is a malty sweetness and a somewhat dry finish. Traditional East Kent Goldings but with a nice touch of Cascade and dash of roasted barley give this ale a great taste. Plenty of crystal malt with some roasted barley.

Hogwild
Aviator Brewing Co. – Fuquay-Varina, NC
Style: India Pale Ale
ABV: 6.7%
A very hoppy and refreshing ale made with Pale Ale and Vienna malts, then dry-hopped with Magnum, Williamette and Amarillo.

Devil’s Tramping Ground
Aviator Brewing Co. – Fuquay-Varina, NC
Style: Hearty Belgian Tripel
ABV: 9.2%
This Tripel ale will grow hair in places you don’t want. It is a golden colored ale with a spicy fruit flavor that finishes a bit sweet.

Sky Blue
Carolina Brewery – Pittsboro, NC
Style: Kolsch Ale
ABV: 5.1%
For those desiring a lighter beer that still has hand-crafted integrity, this thirst-quenching brew is spritzy, not too malty, with a pleasing aroma of imported Hallertauer hops. While fermented warm like all ales, Kolsch beer undergoes a cold aging period like a lager which results in a complex brew that is easy to drink.

Flagship IPA
Carolina Brewery – Pittsboro, NC
Style: India Pale Ale
ABV: 5.7%
Originally, this intensely hopped ale was brewed in the 18th century to survive the long sea journey from the cooler breweries in England, around the Cape of Africa, to India where the temperatures were too warm to brew. This beer has a unique floral aroma from the generous addition of Cascade hops to the fermenter in a procedure known as dry hopping.

Triangle Golden
Triangle Brewing Co. – Durham, NC
Style: Belgian-Style Strong Golden
ABV: 8%
The Strong Golden is fermented at a higher temperature than other Triangle beers, adding an undercurrent of fruitiness (although there is no fruit in the beer). Very lightly filtered, the Golden exhibits complex mouthfeel, strong malt flavors, a spicy hop presence and soothing alcohol warmth, followed by a clean, dry finish. It is excellent with food as well as served by itself.

Triangle White
Triangle Brewing Co. – Durham, NC
Style: Belgian-Style Wheat Ale
ABV: 5%
The style gets its name from the white, slightly cloudy appearance of this unfiltered wheat ale. It is brewed with a generous amount of white and red wheat that is grown locally in Scotland Neck, NC, mixed with our own special blend of organic spices. The resulting Triangle White Ale is complex in flavor without being overpowering or cloying. Overall, it is a beer that is light, fruity and very drinkable during a hot summer day.

Triangle IPA
Triangle Brewing Co. – Durham, NC
Style: India Pale Ale
ABV: 5.7%
Triangle produced this IPA with a deep golden color and plenty of hop bitterness, balanced out by an underlying backbone of malt. Because of the extensive dry hopping, there is a floral and citrus hop finish. This beer has been specially dry hopped with 3 different hop varieties for a wonderful drinking experience.


Fridays Uncorked:

March 15th, join us as we walk host our own Easter dinner selection. We will have classic Easter fare with our staff favorites to go with your special Sunday meal. $15.00

March 22nd, We are thrilled to host Doug Cohen, National Sales Manager with Solena Wines of Oregon, on-hand to walk us through their spectacular wines. You won’t want to miss out on this tasting, Mr. Cohen will share his expertise, knowledge and experience in the world of Oregon wines. $15.00


Wine Bar:

On March 18th, Gyles Webb of Thelema Winery in South Africa will be on-hand at the Wine Bar from 5-7pm to share his knowledge and experience. Thelema proprietor and cellarmaster, Webb began his storied career with a lucky escape from accountancy. A chance encounter in mid-1979 with a Puligny-Montrachet led him to pack away his red pen, and bring his family to Stellenbosch to produce wines on a former fruit farm. Described as a rebel and a visionary, he crafted high quality, small production wines while most of his neighbors were focused on quantity. This dedication to quality continues today, and Thelema enjoys worldwide recognition as one of South Africa’s elite wine producers.

On March 27th, Mr. George Stakos, director of national sales for Ramey Wine Cellars, will be on-hand at the Wine Bar to share Ramey’s portfolio, as well as his immense knowledge and experience.

Through the end of the month we will be offering 50% off all wine bar selections from Monday through Wednesday. It’s a great way to try out our selection and see what we have to offer. Stop in anytime between 11AM and 8PM, Monday through Wednesday and enjoy the savings.


Sunday Beer Garden at Weathervane

Join us in celebration of Cackalacky‘s 12th anniversary and the return of spring weather on April 7 from 4-7pm at Weathervane’s first ever Sunday Beer Garden! Sponsored by Durham’s Fullsteam Brewery, this rain-or-shine event will be held on our lovely patio and feature live music.

Ticket price of $35 per person covers Fullsteam draught beer and Cackalacky-themed small plates until 7, so get here early to secure a spot by the band!

Reservations are recommended, but tell your friends because we’ve got enough room for a rockin’ crowd!

Please call (919) 929-9466 for more information or to reserve your spot.


Wine Tips

Remember when serving dessert wines, be sure the wine is sweeter than the dessert it’s served with. If not, the sweetness of the dessert will make the wine taste flat.


March 2013 Wine Case

 

Each month the Wine Department assembles 12 fantastic wines into a case of 12 bottles and offers them for sale at a discounted bulk price of $99.95. This is an opportunity to share some of our favorite flavors and classic varietals, and it’s one we take very seriously. Whether you’re looking for a prime example of your cherished Crianza, or looking to branch out and discover new tastes and textures, the Southern Season monthly wine case makes oenological exploration sublimely simple.

 

This month’s selections are:

Pedroteño Blanco
Domaine de la Bouysse Blanc
Domaine la Croix Gratiot Picpoul de Pinet
Raimat Albarino
Pedroteño Rosado
Paire les Saignes
Pedroteño Tempranillo
Bodegas Terra Sigilata Filon Garnacha
Château de Marjolet Côtes du Rhône
Dominio de Aranleon Crianza
Château Gasparets Corbières Rouge
Septima Malbec

For full descriptions and retail pricing information, click here: March 2013 Wine Case.