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Mouthing Off

By the Editors of Food & Wine Magazine

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Tastings

Eat, Drink, Run

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The lottery for the NYC Half-Marathon opened yesterday, so I logged on to the New York Road Runners’ web site to sign up. In addition to asking for my estimated finish time, I was asked if I'd be interested in the following: a beer and barbecue bash, a wine and food festival, and wine tastings. Of course I said yes to all three, and then called NYRR to find out more. Ann Crandall, NYRR's senior vice president of business development and marketing, told me, "Most people don't just run. They run and go out for a beer with friends," says Crandall. "We're looking to form partnerships with local restaurants or chefs and create food-driven post-race events." I can't think of a better reason to run.

News

Rocks in Your Mouth

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A group of geologists in Oregon have a few skeptical things to say about the notion of "minerality" in wine, the Southern Oregon Mail Tribute reports. They've got a good point or two—that the amount of actual minerals in wine is below the threshold of human taste and smell, for instance—though they're a bit wobbly on what the French term terroir actually means, which is not just the soil, but the totality of the influence of a specific place on a wine's character.

Terroir takes into account human influence, too, according to Rhône winemaker Michel Chapoutier, who stopped by our office for a quick tasting a few days ago. Chapoutier also made a nice distinction between what he sees as the two broad types of wine in the world: taste-driven wines (where the producer assesses what consumers want, finds appropriate grape sources, and markets a wine that satisfies that demand) and wines of terroir (where the nature of a specific vineyard determines the character of the wine, the winemaker intervenes as little as possible in order to preserve that character, and then the owner hopes that people will buy it). 

Recipes

Black Tea Vodka

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Absolut Vodka Blackberry

© Courtesy of Absolut Vodka
Absolut Boston Blackberry

When angry colonists threw tea into Boston Harbor in 1773, they had no idea that their rebellion would eventually lead to the American Revolutionary War in 1775, or that it would inspire the creation of another kind of beverage in 2009: Absolut Vodka Boston, a limited-edition vodka infused with black tea and elderflower.

Recently, mixologist Jamie Gordon hosted an Absolut Vodka Boston Tea Party at Food & Wine's New York City office. He gave the editorial staff a taste of some fantastic cocktails he created with the spirit, such as the juicy and aromatic Absolut Boston Blackberry.

ABSOLUT BOSTON BLACKBERRY
Makes 1 Drink

4 large blackberries
1 ounce agave nectar
4 ounces Absolut Boston
1 1/2 ounces fresh lemon juice
4 dashes rhubarb bitters
Ice

In a cocktail shaker, muddle 2 of the blackberries with the agave nectar. Add the Absolut Boston, lemon juice, bitters and ice. Shake well and double strain into a chilled large martini glass. Garnish with the remaining 2 blackberries.

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Tune in on Wednesdays at 10PM ET for Top Chef: Boston, the 12th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Already looking forward to next year (June 19-21, 2015)? Relive your favorite moments from the culinary world's most sensational weekend in the Rocky Mountains.