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  • feedwordpress 09:01:59 on 2016/11/07 Permalink
    Tags: , , Illumina, International Merlot Day, Merlot, pseudoscience, , Vinome, wine   

    “Pseudoscience often relies on a witches’ brew of scientific terms… half-baked into simplistic metaphors that do not correspond with testable reality”*… 


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    A new wine delivery service called Vinome is promising to deliver “the ultimate personalized wine experience” — customized to your DNA.

    There isn’t much (or, really, any) science to back it up. But it’s got a very big name in its corner. Vinome just inked a deal with a startup called Helix, which in turn is backed by the world’s biggest DNA sequencing company, the powerhouse known as Illumina. For the past 15 years, Illumina has been selling machines that can quickly decode the human genome. Medical researchers around the world use them. But the company wants to conquer the consumer market, too. That’s why it spent $100 million to launch Helix, which teams up with app developers who can find creative ways to use a customer’s genetic data. Such as selling them wine.

    For about $65 per bottle, Vinome promises to pick out “great wines that are perfectly paired to you” based on an analysis of 10 genetic variants in your DNA, collected via saliva samples. The company — which is based, of course, in Northern California’s wine country — even incorporated the distinctive double helix of DNA into its logo of a corkscrew.

    Medical geneticist Dr. Jim Evans isn’t impressed.  “It’s just completely silly. Their motto of ‘A little science and a lot of fun’ would be more accurately put as ‘No science and a lot of fun,’” said Evans, who’s a professor and researcher at the University of North Carolina. “I’d put this in the same category as DNA matching to find your soulmate,” he said. “We just simply don’t know enough about the genetics of taste to do this on any accurate basis.”…

    For more, pop the cork at: “Fruity with a hint of double helix: A startup claims to tailor wine to your DNA.”

    And for more on the larger phenomenon of which Vinome is a part, see “‘Personalized nutrition’ isn’t going to solve our diet problems.”

    [Image above sourced here]

    K. Lee Lerner

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    As we ponder personalization, we might recall that today is International Merlot Day.  As Wine Cellar Insider observes

    When asked for the most widely planted grape in Bordeaux , many wine lovers would say Cabernet Sauvignon. That is not the case. There are more hectares devoted to Merlot than any other grape in Bordeaux. To give you an idea on how much Merlot is planted in Bordeaux, close to 62% of all vines in Bordeaux are Merlot taking up about 69,138 hectares. Cabernet Sauvignon is a distant second with about 25% of the region’s planting’s totaling close to 28,347 hectares.

    Merlot is not only popular in Bordeaux. In fact, it’s the most widely planted grape in France! Merlot is also successfully planted in Switzerland, Australia, Argentina and numerous other countries, as well as in America…

     

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  • feedwordpress 08:01:37 on 2016/05/11 Permalink
    Tags: classes, Eat What You Want Day, , , , schoolchildren, , wine   

    “What wine goes with Cap’n Crunch?”*… 


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    More (and information on how to enroll) at “Why Italy is mulling wine classes for schoolchildren.”

    * George Carlin

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    As we sip, swirl, and spit, we might contemplate unorthodox pairings as we note that today is “National Eat What You Want Day.”

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  • feedwordpress 08:01:27 on 2014/03/29 Permalink
    Tags: , , Coke, history of wine, , Jacobs, , , wine   

    “Wine is constant proof that God loves us and loves to see us happy”*… 


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    Bio-hazard!  Economic turmoil!  Mass emigration!…  How a tiny insect caused mass migration, the great French wine blight, and almost rid the world of wine forever….

     click here for larger, legible version

    [TotH to 10 Zen Monkeys]

    Special bonus:  ”What does ancient wine taste like?

    *Benjamin Franklin

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    As we own up to oenophilia, we might recall that it was on this date in 1886 that Coca Cola was concocted in an Atlanta, Georgia backyard as a “brain tonic” that could cure hangovers, stomach aches and headaches.  The original formula included caffeine and five ounces of coca leaf (from which cocaine is derived) per gallon. The creator, pharmacist John Pemberton, took his syrup a few doors down to Jacobs’ Pharmacy, where he mixed it with carbonated water and shared it with customers. The pharmacy began marketing it on May 8 as a patent medicine for 5¢ a glass. It spread first through the other Jacobs outlets in Atlanta, and then around the world.

    “The valuable tonic and nerve stimulant properties of the coca plant and cola nuts . . .”

    - John Pemberton

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    Pemberton

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