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You are viewing blog entries tagged vino.

Panama: Feria Nacional de Artesanias (2 Videos) edit

Dsc02735_1 Dearest friends and readers, I am leaving you now with two of my recent amateur videos. They are from the "Feria Nacional de Artesanias," and were taken yesterday. The first video is a folkloric Panamanian dance with a tasty Afro-Caribbean beat and a kind of tasty movements that we all have inherited from our ancestors. The performers were high school kids, as part of a cultural program to rescue our  traditions.

The second video is an interview with the only Panamanian wine makers: Vinos Tropicales, based in the Chiriqui province. Their raspberry dessert wine won the gold medal at a 2003 international wine expo. The interview is in Spanish. Tomorrow I'll post more photos and anecdotes from this colorful event.

If you are in Panama right now, do not miss this great opportunity to visit this national talent showcase. I am greatly surprised, AND will do my best to go one more time before Sunday 10 PM.

A big hug!

Un abrazo!



Let's celebrate BlogDay2006! It is going to be a fantastic event, do not miss it. The deadline: August 31, 2006. Hurry up---get ready grin

Do not forget to Visit:

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  • by Chef Melissa
  • July 28, 2006
  • 9:24 pm

A tasty video from Argentina: Making Empanadas edit

We've got a treat for you today! The first video was taken at the San Pedro de Yacochuya Winery in Cafayate, Salta, Argentina. I have written a little about this fantastic winery and you are invited to learn about it HERE. Our hostess, Ma. Cecilia de Etchart, is an extra charming wonder woman. Not only does she takes care of the PR of this winery, traditionally known for the excellence of its wines. She also is the mother of two beautiful babies.

The empanadas prepared in this mud oven were part of the delicious lunch we enjoyed at the Etchart family house. They were not only yummy, but beautiful and so fragrant.  I Do not even recall how many I had! LOL!

The second bonus video was taken when we were in our way to visit the Iguazu Falls (Cataratas del Iguazu), in Argentina. The video is an aerial view from our plane. If this doesn't seduce you to go to this beautiful country, I do not know what would do it. Well, anyhow...I'll keep trying.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Chef M

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  • by Chef Melissa
  • November 25, 2006
  • 11:25 am

From the Tropics: Vino de Palma (Palm Wine) edit

My father had come from a small village in the Panamanian countryside, but he has always been very fine with life in the city. He brought us up with a sense of his family's ancient traditions, including the love for the land, nature and learning new things. It was that same spirit what made all of his children artists of creating and exploring. Curiosity is the beginning.

Now in my thirties, I still have as much of that curiosity as I had at the age of five. That's hot and it is not easy to get...But it is NOT impossible. Just opening your mind to trying new things will be your first step on this marvelous quest that is "life."

1_1_3 Let's start here: Vino de Palma, or Palm Wine

I have heard stories that made me really thirsty to try this juice from the heart of the rain forest. But it was not until yesterday when I had the intriguingly yummy opportunity to experience it at its fullest. As my sister was coming back to Panama City from Colon, she found a very little stand run by an older woman, smiling her problems away...cheerfully selling some unique goodies; Palm Wine among others.

I happened to be in their town, getting my weekly share of raw, organic-tasty-fresh milk, so I paid them a visit. To my surprise, Paola, my sister, greeted me with a bottle of palm wine and a bottle of freshly made Habanero Pepper Relish. It was out of my hands. I could NOT resist it. They know for sure how to get my attention.

It was an ethereal moment, when I saw those bottles, I forgave her for all the times she wore my clothes and evaporated my perfumes, without permission...when we were teenagers. Holy smokes, ...it was such a soul awakening moment, ...and I didn't have a choice other than to smile (and take the gifts of course!).

Happy Valentines Day! I'll be posting some delicious recipes (in Spanish) soon, so stay tuned!

Con amor,


For more information on Palm Wine visit: Wikipedia. Or How to extract Vino de Palma: a pictorial review!

Ok, Ok,---I know you are a coconut lover...The following posts were specially designed for you:

P.S. you see, I do not only post in English! smile

  • by Chef Melissa
  • February 13, 2007
  • 8:34 pm

Wine Tasting from the Tropics: 2005 Robert Mondavi Private Selection Pinot Noir, 2001 Reserve de la edit

Julio202007_1 A continuación les compartimos las impresiones de la última cata de vinos realizada por nuestro grupo de wine lovers en Panamá. Como referencia, mi post anterior: Mystical Travels through the World of Food, Wine, and a delicious recipe to prepare Roasted Chicken!

Lo se, lo se, me dicen que soy alérgica a los sulfitos...pero, ni modo, that's life in the tropics! Sulfitos o no sulfitos...aquí vamos!

3wines_4 Carlos Mata reporta:

Nos dimos cita en mi apartamento Chef Melissa De León, Antonio Touriño, Mónica Arauz, Emilio y Julieta Arrocha, Concepción Amaya y Carlos Mata.  Antonio y Mónica fueron generosos en traer a la mesa dos botellas: un 2005 Robert Mondavi Private Selection Pinot Noir, y un 2001 Darien Crianza (Rioja).

El Darien es un cupaje interesante de tempranillo, garnacha, mazuelo y graciano; sin embargo, creo que por antojo mío, decidimos probar solamente el Robert Mondavi Pinot Noir, la cual fue la primera cata de la noche.  Creo que mis expectativas sobre este vino eran un poco altas, toda vez que en la cata demostró ser un vino muy joven, y eso nos decepcionó un tanto.  Sin embargo, el vino exibió muy buena textura y largas lágrimas en copa, a la vista. En nariz, el aroma alcohólico fue notado por todos, pero Mónica también anotó aromas a jalea de frambuesa y comino.  Apuntamos buena acidez en boca con sabores a ciruela verde.  Yo diría que los sabores a "berries" típicos del perfil de tal cepa estaban ahí, aunque dormidos y opacados por el "calor" del joven vino, y un final fuerte y prolongado infusionado por roble.

3wines_3_2 Acto seguido hizo su entrada un ilustre 2001 Reserve de la Comtesse, traido a nosotros generosamente por Emilio y Julieta.  Reserve de la Comtesse es un fino Bordeaux de la región de Pauillac, y en nuestra mesa reposó en decanter ancho por aproximadamente dos horas.  A la vista, la Comtesse mostró un color rojo-sangre muy brillante y vivo. De bouquet muy expresivo, anotamos aromas de abundantes frutas y mermeladas, entre ellas cerezas silvestres.  En paladar, notamos trazas de chocolate en la entrada, seguido de cerezas negras y grosella, integrado con matices de toronja y pimentón verde anotados por Mónica, más un tono discreto a pimienta negra en el cierre.  Este vino demuestra su calidad en su excelente integración entre fruta y taninos, sumada a su discreta acidez y un final apreciable y placentero.

wine tasting pairing cata vinos -----
  • by Chef Melissa
  • August 06, 2007
  • 7:58 pm



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