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We all know and love French and Italian wines, and of course California is known for it's interesting varietals and grapes but what about wine in other parts of America? Did you know Virginia used to make award winning wine? Tune in to an informative and historical episode of A Taste of the Past with Linda Pelaccio as she explores the history of American wine with Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page, authors of "The Flavor Bible", "What to Drink with What You Eat", "Becoming a Chef", "The New American Chef, Culinary Artistry", and the just released "Food Lover's Guide to Wine". This episode was sponsored by Hearst Ranch.


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This week on A Taste of the Past, host Linda Pelaccio is joined by Canadian food writer Noami Duguid, who has authored seminal books such as "Seductions of Rice" and "Burma: Rivers of Flavor". Tune in and hear what it's like being an outsider in a foreign land and how Noami navigates cultures and communities to learn about the cuisine that lives amongst them. Find out how the politically oppressed people of Burma operate in their kitchens what makes their food simultaneously accessible and unique. From fish paste to garlic, discover the layered flavors of Burma and the delicious dishes that come from them. This program was sponsored by Hearst Ranch.

"I'm always a beginner - wherever I am. I will never be an expert. All I'm trying to do is get my head in a place where I have some understand of what grows there, how people think about their food, how things are made, what's important to them and what's not important of them." [3:43]

"I didn't want to talk about the people of Burma as victims because we think of victims as less than whole." [9:00]

"In Burmese culture, people use tea leaves in salad. They ferment them, use them fresh or dried." [21:00]

"My problem with breakfast in Burma is there are so many things I want to eat!" [26:50]

"Food is an entry point - it's a way of understanding how things work." [28:30]

-- Noami Duguid on A Taste of the Past


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What spirit were the Three Musketeers drinking back in the 17th century? Armagnac! On this episode of A Taste of the Past, Linda Pelaccio is joined in the studio by David Lincoln Ross, a food writer and armagnac expert. Learn about the ancient roots of the spirit in Egypt, and the differences between cognac and armagnac. Learn about the regional grapes used to make traditional armagnacs, and the importance of oak from the Mon Lunzon forest in the aging process. How does one choose a bottle of armagnac? Learn about the different characteristics of armagnac that can be used to determine what quality spirit to buy. How does armagnac pair with food? Learn about the culinary landscape of Gascony, France, and how armagnac plays a significant role in its food culture. This program has been brought to you by Cain Vineyard & Winery.

"Cognac, in the most simple terms, is distilled twice. It yields a more refined spirit with a higher level of alcohol when it comes out of the still. It's called double distillation. Armagnac has a simpler or continuous distillation process so the spirit that comes out after the distillation process is at a lower proof, but because it has only been distilled once, it has a more fragrant and flavorful result." [6:40]

-- David Lincoln Ross on A Taste of the Past


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