Zen Breath 3-2-1

Note: You are receiving this email because you subscribed to my weekly 3-2-1 newsletter or you subscribed to the Koi Zen Cellars newsletter. Every Friday, I share 3 wine terms, 2 quotes from me, and 1 question for you to ponder. Occasionally, I also send out long-form articles on habits and self-improvement.

~ Zen Winemaker ~

(sorry had an old man moment)

3 terms, 2 quotes, 1 question

April 8, 2022

Happy Friday! Time to wrap up this week and get ready for the next! Take a deep breath and kick off the weekend on a positive note. Let's consider where we have been, improve it, and move forward next week. Packing the most content into the least words and trying to change the world, one glass at a time.

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3 - Wine Terms - Regional Wine Styles

There is a winery in every single state of the US - and grapes are even grown in Alaska; but how do these wines compare to California or French wines?

I have to admit that I have very limited experience in wines grown in the mid west and east coast, and what I have had is, shall we say, unique. I just returned from New Mexico where I tasted Chile Pepper and Pistachio wines and was offered "Liquid Chocolate Love" wine which I declined.
From what I understand and my limited experience is that, most wines created in the center and east coast of the US tend to be sweet wines. I am still trying to figure out if this a regional preference, or a necessity during the winemaking process.

So lets talk about some regional styles of wine today.
  1. West Coast Wines: the vast majority of wines grown on the west coast (CA, OR, WA) are dry wines. Most people would conciser a wine with less than 3% residual sugar to be dry; most people can't detect sugar less than 1%. Sugar is felt and tasted on the tongue where fruitiness is detected on the nose. If you can't figure out if the wine is fruity or sweet, just hold your nose when you sip the wine. If the sensation goes away with your nose plugged - the wine is fruity.
  2. Central US and Mid to South East Coast: these wines tend to be sweeter with pronounced sugar on the palate, low in tannins (the stuff that drys your mouth out) , low in acid (slightly flabby), moderate alcohol (boo hoo) and often of varietals indigenous or cloned for these climates.

    The vast majority of all commonly found wines varietals are from either France, Spain, or Italy and belong to the the species of Vitis Vinifera.

    Native US grapes are much more diverse with V. Labrusca, V. Riparia, V.Rotundifolia, V.Aestivalis, V.Rupestris, and V.Mustangensis. Often you will find unfamiliar grape varietals in these regions.

    Quiz: Which state grows Vitis Mustangensis? Answer below.
  3. Northeast Wines: The Northeast is more suited for German and French varietals where Riesling, Chardonnay, and Gewurztraminer dominate.

    Ice wine is also produced which tops the sweetness scales - the wine is made from frozen very ripe grapes. Ice wine is also very popular in our neighbors to the north, Canada where it is vigorously monitored and controlled.
So we are left with a chicken and egg problem - are central US wines sweet because people want sweet wines, or are sweet wines the only ones readily available?

I would love to hear your opinion.

2 - Quotes from Me:

  1. "My favorite and your favorite are often different - and that's okay." ~ Zen Winemaker
  2. "The wise man understands his mind is clouded with biases." ~ Zen Winemaker

1 - Question to ponder:

Recognizing Perspectives

We are all biased and this bias controls how we think and respond on all levels of consciousness.

Biases are formed through experience, knowledge, teachings, and regional influences and are the quickest way to get you into trouble. Biases form a lens, a perspective, in which we view, evaluate, and judge the world.

Right now there is an unfortunate conflict happening in Ukraine. While many people in the world view Russia as being wrong - over 80% of the people from Russia approve. How can we have such radical difference of opinion? Each side say the other is the "bad guy."

And if you look close, you will see radical divisions across almost every aspect of the human experience.

The world has become very polarized due in part to peoples habitual biases, but also the diet of information people consume, either by choice (Fox vs CNN vs AP) or through marketing, advertisements, and propaganda.

I imagine if we continually hear that green cows were the new cool thing, and influencer's thought green cows were novel, your neighbors thought green cows were the hot item and all you saw on social media that everyone likes green cows - in time - I bet you would also think green cows were normal. (Sorry pink dogs - you were so last week)

Which brings us back to sweet wines. Do the people in the Southeast prefer sweet wines and producers make it so, or do producers make sweet wines and people adapt? Inquiring minds want to know.


How often do you resist change based upon habitual biases and beliefs? Or better yet, how cognizant are you that you are habitually biased?

Zen Giggles:

A couple came into the winery last week and we were talking about kids.

The husband said, "My wife and I decided we don't want kids."

And the wife added, "We're going to tell the children tonight at dinner."

~~ Notice ~~

The beautiful Vitis Mustangensis grapes grown in Texas!


A favor:

We strive to foster a community who are excited to learn about wine and create a better world for all. We are a small business and appreciate your support. Please encourage others to subscribe to this newsletter and build the community of like minded people. And don't forget to give me some feedback on what you want to learn about - I love hearing from you.

Also, if you are at a point in life where you desire change, but don't know what, where, or how - I suggest taking my online class on Finding Your Passion HERE. It might be the best investment you ever made.


Darius Miller - The Zen Winemaker

P.S. Let me know what you think of the 3-2-1 newsletter - or better yet, share with your friends - it would be much appreciated.

Author of a #1 best seller:
'The Zen Winemaker - Follow Your Dreams & Overcome Your Fears'

Creator of:

'The Zen Wine Tasting Journal - Life is too short to drink bad wine, or to wear ugly underwear.'

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