wine

kieferpix / Fotolia

The full heat of summer is upon us. Most of us reach for a cold beer or cider if we want something alcoholic to help cool down.

But Lake Effect’s regular wine contributor Ray Fister says don’t ignore the fruits of the grape, and don't be afraid to try something new: 

Ray Fister is the co-creator and voice of the wine blog and podcast Life Between the Vines and the owner and engineer of 5th Floor Recording Company.

digidreamgrafix / Fotolia

The last time wine contributor Ray Fister joined Lake Effect's Bonnie North, he talked about the impact that a historically bad wildfire season in California was having on the wine grape industry.

It’s been several months since those fires, and Fister says, "It's amazing how things have come back" in the Napa and Sonoma regions.

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

At last report from the Interagency Fire Center, two significant wildfires continue to burn in California. They’ve already charred more than 111-thousand acres. And while the threat to life and property is dying down, the effects of California’s wildfire season this year will not soon be forgotten.

The fires killed people and had a potentially devastating effect on the Napa Valley region, where many of the country’s finest wines are produced from grapes grown there. But Lake Effect contributor Ray Fister says the wineries are still open for business. 

kubais / Fotolia

Every so often, when he isn’t off in California trying out this year’s vintage, Ray Fister stops in to chat about wine. Lake Effect's wine contributor is the co-creator and voice of the wine blog and podcast Life Between the Vines.

MSPhotographic / Fotolia

It’s November, and the holiday juggernaut is almost upon us.  And if you drink, it’s a time you might be buying more wine than you normally would.  But if you don’t know a lot about wine, this can be a daunting task.

Wine contributor Ray Fister has the answers, and one of his recommendations includes trying out different dessert wines during the holidays.

Martin Krolikowski / Flickr

Wine lovers know that summer is perhaps the best time for white wines. They offer a sweet, refreshing taste that can cool off even the hottest August afternoons. There are a plethora of wines to choose from, but Lake Effect wine contributor Ray Fister, says this is the season for sauvignon blanc. 

The perfect summer wine, sauvignon blanc can be paired with almost anything. "In a way it's like how beer makes you feel on a summer day. It just tastes great going down," says Fister. "That first swig... it is summer. It's just beautiful."

Nishihama / Fotolia

Ray Fister joins us from time to time to talk about all-things wine. Among the popular bottles this time of year are those that hold Rosé – a variety that he says is gaining  in popularity.

"Rosé is one of the things that can appeal to everybody," says Fister. "It tends to be a more of a warm weather wine, but even better than that - it's a little lighter in alcohol. And it can go into almost any pairing situation with food."

Rostislav Sedlacek / Fotolia

What kind of wine did you drink on New Year’s?  Or more generally, when you think of a good bottle of wine, where do you imagine it comes from?

Many would say France or Italy, while others might include Spain and South Africa. But wine contributor Ray Fister believes you can find good wines originating from every state of the union beyond the Napa Valley.

Druh Scoff / Flickr

Jessica Bell took a roundabout way to marry her passion for wine with her career. Bell studied economics at Duke and worked as a successful investment banker in New York City before a “quarter-life” crisis led her to move to Spain to work at a winery.

Despite the years it took her to make her career revolve around wine, Bell quickly realized it was a "natural fit."

US Air Force / Flickr

As harvesting of grapes gets into full gear, it’s an exciting time of year for wine lovers, and a busy time of year for wine makers. However, some states have been dealing with great challenges this growing and harvesting season.

The state of California faces one of the most severe droughts on record, while crews struggle to keep numerous wildfires under control. The high heat index, hazy atmosphere and lack of water present huge challenges for the state's wine makers.

Charles Nadeau / Flickr

It is picnic season in Wisconsin, and if your picnic plans include a bottle or two of wine, contributor Ray Fister might have some wines that could strike your fancy.

After visiting several Wisconsin wineries, Fister shares his experience as well as wine recommendations to try this summer:

Sarah_Ackerman / Flickr

Lake Effect’s wine contributor Ray Fister has been racking up the frequent flyer miles in the past few weeks.

Between trips to California and wine events closer to home, he made time to speak with Lake Effect's Bonnie North while in Milwaukee. 

"’13 was another great one, followed by ’14 – everybody’s sitting on the edge of their chair to see what’s gonna happen in ’15," he says. "Three in a row is pretty unusual – certainly for Napa and Sonoma, they’re very happy."

Brent Hofacker - Fotolia.com

Hanukkah has begun and Christmas is next week. If you’re like most of us at this time of year, you’re awash in holiday parties of all kinds. 

Christian Haugen / Flickr

A little over two months ago, people in California’s Napa Valley were awakened by a magnitude 6.0 earthquake.  

AuctionNapaValley.org

$18.7 million is a lot to raise in a single auction – but it was the total raised earlier this month by the Napa Valley Vintners Association in its annual Auction Napa Valley.

Pages