Ok, we can all admit this spring is definitely not “business as usual.” Most of us are stuck at home S.I.P. (sheltered in place), which is especially hard during this Easter/Passover week, a time normally celebrated with our families. If you’re like us, you’re looking for all the positive energy you can find in this world of scary COVID-19 news.
For the first week or so, Robin and I read ALL the articles that popped up in our notifications and religiously watched the news for updates on the virus. We were STRESSED. However, after a FaceTime session, we realized that we’d been working so hard with events and travel, and for real––we were a little worn out. While we continue to work hard during S.I.P., now is a great time to focus a little more on taking care of ourselves and getting back in touch with the things we love, like hanging out with our families, cooking, catching up on movies and shows, and listening to music, to help us feel more calm and relaxed.
Like so many of us, Robin and I are not good at making time for ourselves––we always feel like there’s something we should be doing to stay busy––but caring for ourselves, especially during stressful times, helps clear our minds. So, we wanted to share some fun activities you can do, paired with our favorite wines for spring, to bring a little fun into a tough situation!
Rosé All Day!
Rosé is perfect for spring, and it’s even better when enjoyed with your girlfriends. Fragrant orange blossom and tart raspberries make our Black Girl Magic California Rosé an excellent wine to sip on with your girls this season.
Although you can’t see them in person right now (shoutout to #SocialDistancing), you can meet up at the club! #ClubQuarantine, that is. Our favorite DJ, D-Nice, has been live on Instagram spinning the songs that make EVERYBODY move. Grab your girls and jump in––it’s just like being at the club back in the day but you don’t even have to get dressed!
Marvin Gaye and Chardonnay
Ok, truth? We haven’t had much time to read. But, I’ve got a plan to chill with some smooth R&B and a few books that I’ve been dying to read. Robin and I like to read books written by strong women who write honestly about their lives and learnings. A lot of humor and maybe even a little spilling of tea along the way and we are IN. On our list right now? “More Than Enough: Claiming Space for Who You Are (No Matter What They Say)” by the fabulous Elaine Welteroth, “We’re Going to Need More Wine” by the smart and gorgeous Gabrielle Union-Wade, and “I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual” by truth-telling Luvvie Ajayi Jones. Let us know your favorite reads in the comments!
The perfect companion to great music and an excellent book is, of course, Chardonnay! Try our elegant and crisp Central Coast California Chardonnay. With notes of juicy pineapple and zesty citrus––it’s perfect with this delicious Grilled/ Smoked Salmon recipe featured in the latest blog from our good friend Mark Phillips at Southern Temptation.
Sauvignon Blanc and Downward Dog?
Yoga and wine are known to be two of the best ways to relax. If you’re craving some good yoga and maybe even a little side of meditation, check out the awesome sessions hosted by Faith Hunter or join in on the FREE classes CorePower is offering on their YouTube channel.
Red Blend and Chill
And finally, now is the perfect time to binge a TV series or watch some movies! If you haven’t seen it yet, check out Uncorked on Netflix––a fantastic family drama centered around our favorite thing: Wine!
For a relaxing movie night, all you need is a smooth red wine, some PJ’s and a cozy seat.
Hungry? Skip the popcorn and go all out with some BBQ! Treat yo’ self to one of our favorite recipes: McBride Sisters Family Chocolate & Jalapeño Short Ribs. Enjoy it with our Central Coast California Red Blend. With its leathery notes of tobacco, flavors of juicy plum, cherry, and blackberry, and a hint of peppery spice, you’ll be ready for a dope night in!
Order our wines now in our Online Wine Shop to stock up on these spring essentials!
Happy Easter and Passover to you all! Wash your hands and be well.
McBride Sisters Family Recipe: Chocolate & Jalapeño Short Ribs with McBride Sisters Collection Red Blend
Total Time: 3 hr. 30 min
- 3 1/2 pounds boneless short ribs
- 2 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. black pepper
- 2 tsp. canola oil
- 1/2 yellow onion diced
- 1 carrot diced
- 1 celery stalk diced
- 1 tsp. chopped garlic
- 1/2 jalapeno pepper, minced
- 3 tsp. tomato paste
- 3 tsp. ketchup
- 1 1/2 tbsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 2 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground pepper
- 1 cup McBride Sisters Collection Red Blend
- 2 cups beef stock
- 6 dried mixed chilies (Chipotle, arbol, ancho)
- 1 disc Abuelita Mexican Hot Chocolate chopped
- 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- Preheat a Le Creuset Grill Pan over medium heat; brush lightly with canola oil. Pat the short ribs dry and season with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Grill short ribs in batches on all sides until grill marks appear, remove from grill and repeat with remaining short ribs.
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Heat olive oil in the Le Creuset Braiser over medium heat; add the onion, carrot, and celery to skillet. Sauté until they achieve color. Stir in garlic and jalapeño, cooking for one minute, and then add tomato paste and ketchup. Cook and stir until the paste starts to darken, scraping the bottom of the braiser to prevent burning. Stir in Paprika and Cumin, thyme, salt, and pepper. Continue to cook and stir to toast spices. Deglaze with McBride Sisters Collection Red Blend wine and scrape any brown bits off the bottom of the pan; allow wine to reduce by half. Add dried chilies and beef stock and heat mixture to a rolling simmer; add chocolate and stir to melt.
- Place short ribs into braiser, cover with lid, and place in oven for 30 hours. The ribs should be very tender and almost fall off the bone. Carefully remove ribs to a serving platter and keep warm.
- Remove whole Chile pieces from sauce and skim fat from the surface. Stir in 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar. If the sauce is too thin, mix 1/2 tbsp. flour 1tbsp. water together to form a slurry and whisk into sauce. Bring sauce to a boil and serve over ribs.
Ladies, it’s our time to shine: It’s Women’s History Month! Embrace your inner Sasha Fierce and raise a glass to all of the impactful women who have paved the way for us to live our best lives. After all, we know #SHECAN do anything.
A Boundless Sisterhood
When we entered the winemaking business, we knew we would face adversity––breaking into a male-dominated industry as two Black women is NOT easy. Taking inspiration from our two strong mothers and combining our determined, fearless personalities, our mission became clear: we would transform the industry through leading by example and cultivating community, one great wine at a time. We envisioned a true Sisterhood where women could bond over their achievements and a good bottle of Rosé.
The McBride Sisters Collection was born in 2010, and we can proudly say we are the first Black Sisters to create and grow a wine company. We didn’t do it on our own, though––from Coco Chanel to Oprah, Andréa and I looked up to many resilient women throughout history to turn our shared dream of making wine into a reality. (On a side note, Coco is definitely a Brut Rosé kind of girl.)
Chasing a dream is a never-ending marathon that takes dedication and support. Each day we think about how we can create uplifting, positive experiences for women. We want to encourage women to color outside the lines, to never settle, and to empower each other, because, as we always say, empowered women empower women. Hopefully, Andréa and I will help open doors for other women, just as women before us have done.
Check out this inspirational gallery of women who are changing the game.
#SHECAN, So She Does
This March, we are showcasing our SHE CAN wines. Designed to motivate and encourage all women to go after what we want––no matter what obstacles we encounter––our SHE CAN packaging is a roar, not a whisper. We hope it reminds you to be unafraid of your powerful voice and unique story. You are automatically a part of our Fearless Pride when you crack open a can of Rosé or Sauvignon Blanc!
To ride the wave of International Women’s Day (did you know there’s a theme each year? This year is #EachforEqual, encouraging us to challenge stereotypes, fight bias, broaden perceptions, and celebrate women's achievements), we have finally announced details for the 2020 SHE CAN Professional Development Fund! Founded in 2019, our scholarship program initially promoted the professional advancement of women in the winemaking industry. But, to celebrate a new decade, we are now supporting women who are overcoming gender biases in all industries. Applications will go live on June 1st, but you can click here for more info––get pumped, ladies!
Last year, we awarded scholarships of nearly $40,000. We can’t wait to help a new round of fierce go-getters knock down barriers. June 1st, hurry up!
Spring is in the Air
Flowers are beginning to bloom, spring fashions are emerging, and it’s getting warm enough to start thinking about chilled wines and picnics. Our SHE CAN Sauvignon Blanc is crisp and refreshing––the perfect complement to a gorgeous spring day! Pair it with this colorful, vegetarian-friendly Spring Panzanella with Asparagus, a recipe we LOVE from Food&Wine.
Spring Panzanella with Asparagus
- 4 large eggs
- Four thin slices of peasant bread, torn into 1-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
- 2 pounds fat asparagus, peeled
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- Freshly ground pepper
- 2 cups packed young mustard greens or chicory
- 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/4 pound ricotta salata, thinly sliced and crumbled
- 1 watermelon radish or 2 large red radishes, very thinly sliced
- Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°. Put the eggs in a saucepan of water and bring to a simmer over moderately high heat. Simmer for 6 minutes. Drain the saucepan and fill it with cold water. Crack the eggs all over and let stand in the water for 1 minute. Peel and thickly slice the eggs; the yolks will be barely cooked but not runny.
- Step 2: Spread the bread pieces on a baking sheet and brush lightly with olive oil. Bake for about 12 minutes, until crisp.
- Step 3: Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the asparagus until just tender, about 3 minutes. Drain, cool and cut the asparagus in half lengthwise.
- Step 4: In a small bowl, combine the 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of oil with the vinegar; season with salt and pepper. In a large bowl, toss the asparagus, toasted bread, greens, onion and cheese. Drizzle with the dressing and toss. Garnish with the eggs and radish and serve.
Choosing Wine for Date Night Just Got Easy!
Whether you’re planning a romantic date night or a fun girls’ night in, there’s one must-have: the perfect bottle of wine. No excuses!
You may be wondering if it really matters which variety you choose. In fact, it does! You could have any random bottle of wine, but why think so small? Your choice says a lot about what you expect of the evening. It’s these subtle details that contribute to a romantic evening with your partner or a fun night with the girls. Besides, there’s nothing more special than opening a bottle of wine with your date! We’ve come up with a list of 3 sophisticated wines that tend to appeal to the masses (and exceed expectations).
1. BRUT ROSÉ
It’s hard to go wrong with Sparkling. Add the Rosé factor into the mix and we have the duchess of wines (*cough cough* subtle shoutout to our girl Meghan Markle). Needless to say, popping a cork signifies that you’ve gathered to celebrate. If you’ve opened Brut Rosé with your date or girl gang, the message is clear.
McBride Sisters Collection Brut Rosé is a blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that possesses gentle floral notes of rose petals––the universal flower of love. This is complemented by strawberries and cream, a romantic fruit if there ever was one. Strawberries dipped in chocolate, anyone? This refreshing Brut Rosé is delicately structured and generous with a dry finish.
Fun fact: Carbonation stimulates the salivary glands so you don’t need to worry about your mouth going dry from date nerves!
Pairing suggestion: Roasted Oysters
Similar to Brut Rosé, a Rosé’s color is key. That gorgeous pink has our mouths watering and reminds us of love. If you’re ever unsure of what your girls or date drinks, Rosé is generally a crowd-pleaser.
Black Girl Magic Rosé is a sophisticated dry Rosé. This Rosé has aromas of raspberry and orange blossom with delightful acidity and delectable fresh stone fruit and citrus palate.
Pairing suggestion: Chicken with Creamy Mushrooms
3. RED BLEND
Deep, rich reds are usually a date night go-to. The beautiful red color screams romance. It is also a great wine to have in-hand while you chat with the girls. Picking a red wine can be daunting if you don’t know which grape your date prefers. That’s where a Red Blend comes into play. A Red Blend is a wine that encourages meaningful conversations. Just remember not to wear a white shirt ;)!
McBride Sisters Collection Red Blend (Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon) has a lovely rich garnet color. This complex wine has tobacco and vanilla bean notes alongside generous plum, cherry, and blackberry. Ripe and juicy in the mouth, the soft tannins offer just enough velvety texture to round out the full body. Peppery spice and a hint of herb show up on the finish, encouraging another sip and cheers.
Pairing suggestion: Roasted Red Pepper Lasagna (and Chocolate Fondue for dessert)
Visit our Wine Shop to prepare stress-free for your next date or girls’ night. Enjoy!
Fall *wink* in Love with These Favs
We’re putting away our flip flops and bringing out the tall boots. Red, yellow, and orange leaves have begun to fall, leaving branches bare. It’s pumpkin season, y’all!
As much as our Pride loves the light and fruity wines that did us wonders in the summer heat, fall’s wines warm the palette so well. Maybe we’re biased, but we would argue it does it better than a pumpkin spice latte ever could; are we right, ladies?! ;)
You might not be quite ready for full-bodied, rich reds that tend to be associated with winter. Not a problem! There are plenty of lighter reds, aromatic whites, and even Rosés to choose from. Typically, when we hear “Rosé” we associate this pink wine with the sweltering summer. Let’s not limit this wine’s potential. Think of Rosé as the perfect transition wine. In fact, Rosé season never has to end!
Rosé For The Wine
McBride Sisters Collection Brut Rosé is a blend of Pinot and Chardonnay. The Pinot Noir was mainly sourced from Kelly’s Creek Vineyard in Spring Creek, Marlborough. (Fun fact: Andréa helped plant these vines as a child!) This beautifully salmon-colored wine is delicately structured with gentle notes of rose petals and strawberries and cream. The red fruits carry through the palate with cranberry, peach, strawberry, and raspberry notes taking center stage. There is a hint of toasty complexity and creamy richness that makes this versatile wine work so well in the cooler months. There is a dry finish with lingering hints of spice, giving the mouth a kick.
Pair with Bouillabaisse.
Black Girl Magic Rosé is a sophisticated take on the classic Rosé. The raspberry and orange blossom aromas play with the delightful acidity and counteract the chilly weather outside. Meanwhile, the delectable fresh stone fruit and citrus palette encourage sip after sip.
Pair with Ratatouille.
Are You Red-y?
McBride Sisters Collection Red Blend is perfect for those late, rainy evenings. This blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon is a garnet gem. Let’s get complex. This wine has flavors of plum, cherry, and blackberry, alongside tobacco and vanilla. That’s not all! Peppery spice and a hint of blackberry show up on the finish—so rich; so luxurious.
Pair with Butternut Squash and Kale Salad.
Dessert and White Wine
Black Girl Magic Riesling is an intensely aromatic white. Its characteristics are typical of a Riesling: honey, apricot, and white flowers. Tangerine, jasmine, and coriander seed appear in the nose. The palette then turns to tropical flavors of guava and pineapple. It doesn’t stop there! Mild sweetness is balanced by tangy citrus for a sweet and sour finish. No one ever said that fall flavors need to be savory!
Pair with the ultimate fall dessert, Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler! Check out the recipe below.
Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler (via Lauren's Latest)
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
- 1 cup and 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon cloves
- ½ cup pumpkin puree
- ¼ cup milk
- ¼ cup melted butter or vegetable oil
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup chopped pecans
- 1 ½ cups very hot water
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- In a medium-sized bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, and spices. Set aside.
- In a smaller bowl, combine pumpkin, milk, melted butter, and vanilla together. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix. Pour into a small 8-inch casserole dish with high sides.
- In a separate bowl, stir sugar, brown sugar, and pecans together. Spread over the top of the batter evenly. Pour hot water over the entire thing without stirring, and bake for 40 minutes or once the middle is set. Be sure to place it on a baking sheet in case it bubbles over. Cool for 5-10 minutes before serving. Serve with more pecans, vanilla ice cream, and a tall glass of Black Girl Magic Riesling!
Visit our Wine Shop to try all our fall favorites. Happy sipping!
Put down your glass of Sauvignon Blanc…now pick it back up.
If you’re like us, you like to know the facts about what you’re consuming. Well, we’ve got you covered. Let’s get to know everyone’s favorite white wine: Sauvignon Blanc!
Back To Basics
Sauvignon Blanc, a green-skinned grape variety, originates from the Bordeaux region of France and produces a dry, crisp white wine. In the 1880s, the first Sauvignon Blanc cuttings were brought to California, the location of McBride Sisters Collection headquarters. It wasn’t until the 1970s that the grape was first introduced to New Zealand, where the McBride Sisters Collection Sauvignon Blanc and SHE CAN Sauvignon Blanc are cultivated. In 1979, Sauvignon Blanc was first commercially produced on New Zealand shores, and is now the country’s most widely planted variety.
Besides California and New Zealand, Sauvignon Blanc is also cultivated in France, Chile, Romania, Canada, Australia, South Africa, and Washington state. Can you get any more worldly?!
Did you know that the Sauvignon Blanc vine often buds late but ripens early? Therefore, it performs best in sunny climates, as long as it’s not exposed to overwhelming heat. In warm regions––for example, South Africa, Australia, and California––the grape thrives in cooler climates. High heat causes the grape to over-ripen and produce dull-flavored wine.
Both of our Sauvignon Blancs are cultivated in the Marlborough Region of New Zealand. The region’s sandy soils over slate shingles makes for great soil drainage. It also has poor fertility, which encourages the vine to focus its flavors in lower yields. Climate determines if the wine’s flavor is more tropical or grassy.
Flavors of The Month
Warmer climates produce a wine with tropical fruit notes. Over-ripeness is a risk, and leaves faint grapefruit and tree fruit notes. On the other end of the spectrum, cooler climates produce wine with noticeable acidity and flavors of grass, green bell peppers, passion fruit, and floral notes. An unripe grape is high in malic acid. As it ripens, it develops bell pepper flavors, achieving a balance of sugars. Sauvignon Blanc’s primary flavors are lime, green apple, passion fruit and white peach. The flavor palette ranges from zippy lime to flowery peach.
What makes Sauvignon Blanc unique from other white wines? Well, its aromatic organic compounds called “pyrazines” give the wine its herbaceous flavors of bell pepper, jalapeño, gooseberry, and grass. Sauvignon Blanc’s acidity level is medium to medium-high.
Similar varieties include: Verdejo, Albariño, Colombard, Grüner Veltliner, Verdicchio, Vermentino, Tocai Friulano, Savignan (rare), Traminer, and Sauvignon Vert (rare).
Via Wine Folly.
Tu Parle en Français?
“Sauvage” is the French word for “wild,” and “Blanc” is the French word for “white.” Therefore, Sauvignon Blanc translates to “wild white.” So, guess we’re gettin’ wild with a glass of “wild white!”
Pour To Enjoy
Sauvignon Blanc does not particularly benefit from aging, so there’s no need to wait to open a bottle. Lighter, crisp wines like Sauvignon Blanc shouldn’t be oxidized as much to preserve the clean flavor. When it comes to using the right wine glass shape, look for wine glasses with a smaller mouth.* These glasses reduce the surface area of the wine. Use these glasses to enjoy our delicate McBride Sisters Collection Sauvignon Blanc.
*Psst! Visit our blog post “Why the Shape of a Wine Glass Shapes the Taste of Your Wine” for more information.
Another trick of the trade is to serve Sauvignon Blanc at “cellar temp” (about 50 to 60 degrees). When it comes to chilling white wine, there are two options. You can either leave it in the fridge for several hours, or you can put it in the freezer for about 30 minutes. If the girls are on their way, pop that bottle in the freezer and you’re good to go.
Luckily for us, Sauvignon Blanc has a variety of foods that mutually compliment each other.
- Seafood lovers, this one’s for you! Sauvignon Blanc’s zing enhances the citrus and garlic-based sauces used for seafood, shellfish, and white fish. It is also one of the only wines that works well with sushi.
- By now you know that Sauvignon Blanc has herbaceous notes. These pair well with similar green herbs like parsley, rosemary, basil, cilantro, mint, tarragon, thyme, fennel, dill, and chives. Other “non-green” spices include white pepper, coriander, turmeric, and saffron.
- Meat lovers, unite! Perfect white meat pairings are chicken and turkey.
- We love a delectable cheese board. Try Sauvignon Blanc with softer, briny, and sour cheeses like goat’s milk cheese.
- Don’t worry, we didn’t forget about the veggies! Pair these vegetarian dishes with Sauvignon Blanc: asparagus quiche, cucumber dill yogurt salad, white bean casserole with zucchini, and green hummus.
Now that you’re a Sauvignon Blanc expert, put your knowledge to the test. Kick back with a bottle (or two) of crisp, clean Sauvignon Blanc! Visit our Wine Shop to explore our wines.
Cheers to You!
Are you a glass-half-full or half-empty kind of person?
If you’ve ever wondered why wine glass shapes are a big deal, we’re here to help clarify. Through a number of testings and experiments, experts have found that the shape of the glass has the ability to concentrate the wine’s aroma, further intensifying the varietal characteristics. How can we say no to that?!
Typically, glasses are composed of three parts: the bowl, stem, and foot. Key factors that drive the shape of the bowl are the release of aromas, the collection of aromas, and the lip. As the alcohol volatilizes at the wine’s surface, aromas are released. The space between the wine and the glass’s lip is where aromas are collected. Generally, red wines have larger bowls to highlight their aromas. To maintain their temperature, white wines have smaller bowls. The lip of the glass is usually made quite thin so it’s out of the way and doesn’t affect the drinker’s experience.
Now that we’ve discussed the general guidelines, let’s get down to the specific, nitty-gritty differences in wine glass shapes!
Via Wine Folly.
Let’s break it down!
Red Wine Glasses
By now you know that red wine glasses have wider, rounder bowls. You may not know that these bowls are intended to increase the rate of oxidation. Oxidation allows the complex flavors found in red wines to be smoothed. (Psst! Visit our blog post for information about decanting wine!) Some examples of red wine glasses include:
- Bordeaux glass: This tall, broad bowled glass is designed for bold, full-bodied red wines like our Black Girl Magic Red Blend, as well as Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. The wide opening helps smooth the flavor and allows the ethanol to evaporate.
- “Standard” red wine glass: This glass is ideal for medium to full-bodied reds, especially those with spicy notes. Use this glass to sip on Zinfandel, Malbec, Syrah (Shiraz), and Petite Sirah.
- Burgundy glass: The Burgundy glass is broader than the Bordeaux glass. It’s bigger bowl accumulates delicate aromas, like from Pinot Noir.
White Wine Glasses
Compared to red wine glasses, white wine glasses vary quite a bit in shape and size, from the tapered Champagne flute to the wide and shallow glasses used to enjoy Chardonnay.
Similar to red wine glasses, wide-mouthed glasses promote rapid oxidation. Chardonnays, like McBride Sisters Collection Chardonnay, are best served slightly oxidized.
Lighter, crisp wines shouldn’t be oxidized as much, in order to preserve the clean flavor. Look for wine glasses with a smaller mouth intended to reduce the surface area of the wine. Use these glasses for our delicate McBride Sisters Collection Sauvignon Blanc, a summer favorite.
Sparkling Wine Glasses
When you think of sparkling wine glass, you think “Champagne flute.” This tall, narrow-bowled, long-stemmed design is meant to be held by the stem to prevent your hand from heating the wine. The narrow bowl helps to retain that scrumptious carbonation. Also, we can’t deny the Instagrammable quality of the flute! Add a strawberry slice to a glass of McBride Sisters Collection Brut Rosé and get snapping! It also helps to preserve the wine’s floral aromas, express more acidity, and deliver the aromas to the nose.
However, a “universal” or white wine glass is also a great option to enjoy a celebratory glass of sparkling wine or Prosecco. These wider-mouthed glasses allow the aromas to pop out of the glass, which can be muted with the traditional Champagne flute.
“Universal” Wine Glass
This is probably the handiest invention to benefit the wine world. “Universal” glasses are suited for drinking any kind of wine. If you’re a drink-outta-any-glass kind of gal, then the universal wine glass is the shape for you. There’s no need to collect specific glasses for varietals if you classify yourself as a “casual wine fan.” Of course, if you want to step it up a notch, use a standard red wine glass for all reds and a Chardonnay glass for whites.
Stemless glasses are great for everyday enjoyment. They’re an easy choice if you’re collapsing wine-in-hand after a long workday. However, we don’t recommend using them for higher-quality wines. Without the stem, you're forced to hold the bowl, which warms the wine—a white wine lover's nightmare.
Are your glasses clean and need to be filled? Visit our Wine Shop to make your flavor palette and glasses happy with a number of our sophisticated wines. We’ll drink to that!
To Age or Not to Age, That Is the Question.
Does wine get better with age? Many people lead you to believe that’s true. Let’s get to the bottom of that age-old question!
We’re coming to you straight from the McBride Sisters HQ with hard facts! No doubt you’ve heard that wine always improves with age and that you can age any bottle. Au contraire! Age doesn’t improve or worsen wine but changes the flavor, mouthfeel, and color. It’s important to note that wine has more aging potential if the grapes contain less water before harvest.
However, not all wines are made to age. Luckily for us and you, there’s no need to wait to open McBride Sisters Collection wines! Why wait 20 years to open a bottle you love! We appreciate the wine that was intended to be aged, like White Burgundy (Chardonnay) or Bordeaux (which is similar to our Red Blend), but unlike those wines, we've made it so that the wines you love can be consumed now, like our wines in can and under screw cap. Now, for all you age-curious wine connoisseurs, let’s debunk the varieties that have the ability to be aged...and well!
Wines with a low pH have a greater ability to age. Red wines have a higher level of flavor compounds, like tannins. This increases the likelihood that a wine will be able to age.
White wines with a high amount of extract and acidity have the longest aging potential because acidity acts as a preservative and because white wines have a lower amount of phenolic compounds. These wines have good aging potential: most Chardonnays can be aged for 2–6 years and Rieslings can be aged for 2–30 years, which is great news for all you white wine-lovers out there!
Rosé and Sparkling Wines
Generally, Rosé’s aging potential is limited through skin contact. After chilling Black Girl Magic Rosé, get pouring! There’s no need to wait. Similar can be said of our McBride Sisters Collection Brut Rosé. Sparkling wines are typically bottled ready-to-enjoy, so pop those bottles!
Put Your Palette to the Test
When wines are young, we taste their primary and secondary notes associated with winemaking techniques, like the creamy nuances in our McBride Sisters Collection Chardonnay from Malolactic fermentation. As wines age, we notice tertiary flavors developing. We also notice that fruit flavors deteriorate rapidly. For example, bold notions of fresh fruit gradually become more subdued and reminiscent of dried fruit.
Acids and alcohols are constantly reacting to form new compounds. The proportion of alcohol, acids, and sugars stay the same, while the flavors continue to change.
Texturally, the lines also change. It is said that dry, aged white wines can become almost viscous and oily, while reds tend to feel smoother. Over time, phenolic compounds like tannins become sediment, which changes the texture. We love a full-bodied, smooth Black Girl Magic Red Blend paired alongside Blue Cheese Steak Crostini, a McBride Sisters favorite. Scroll down to grab the recipe!
Color You Impressed?
Color change is the result of slow oxidation. You can tell how young wine is by its color. For example, ruby-red wine is quite young, and as it ages, it will adapt a tawny hue. The amount of air left in the neck of the sealed bottle and how permeable the closure affects the oxidation rate.
Via Wine Enthusiast
Stop by our online Wine Shop to fulfil all your wine wishes. Store a McBride Sisters Collection Chardonnay for later in the year or pop a bottle of our Sparkling Brut Rosé as a fun way to beat the heat! Cheers to that!
And now, without further ado, let’s take a peek at Chef Mark’s latest recipe…
Blue Cheese Steak Crostini
Yield: 15 | Prep: 15 mins| Cook: 15 mins
- 1 loaf French baguette
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound New York strip
- 1 cup crumbled blue cheese
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 tablespoon granulated garlic powder
- 1 cup balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper
- fresh basil for garnish
- fresh grape tomatoes cut in half
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Slice the baguette into 1/2 inch slices on the diagonal, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with garlic.
- Place bread on a baking sheet and toast for 5-7 minutes. Remove and set aside.
- Pour balsamic vinegar into a small sauce pot, bring to a boil then reduce to a low simmer until the vinegar has halved and thickened. It will coat the back of a spoon when done. Turn off heat and set aside.
- Heat a greased grill pan over medium-high heat.
- Season the steak with salt and pepper and grill or pan sear 3-5 minutes per side for rare to medium-rare.
- To assemble the crostini, top with a piece of steak, blue cheese crumble, and grape tomato. Drizzle the balsamic reduction and top with fresh basil.
Pair with McBride Sisters Collection Red Blend or Black Girl Magic Red Blend!
ACT NOW! The McBride Sisters SHE CAN Professional Development Fund closes TOMORROW at 11:59 pm, PST.
Ladies––we’re talking to YOU! This spring, we announced The McBride Sisters SHE CAN Professional Development Fund to promote the professional advancement of women in the wine industry. As a women-run business, it is inspiring to see other women making waves in this industry.
“Balance is not a women's issue, it's a business issue.” -International Women’s Day
The SHE CAN Professional Development Fund is our way of showing our support for the empowerment of women who strive to make change and create opportunities for themselves in the wine industry. Why? Well, while wine is no longer a boy’s club, the playing field is certainly not a level one. Women make up less than 10% of head winemakers and winery owners. It’s time to close the gap because we know SHE CAN!
We are grateful for the incredible amount of support we have received over the years so we want to show our appreciation through scholarships, ensuring that we continue to overcome gender biases within the industry. We are accepting applications for scholarships until tomorrow (Wednesday), July 31st 2019!
Empower yourself and your business.
#SHECAN’s Road to Empowerment
Let’s take a look at the inspiration behind The McBride Sisters SHE CAN Professional Development Fund. This spring, we toasted women’s empowerment with the introduction of the new wine in a can, made for women, by women. Our Pride welcomed SHE CAN Wines into the McBride Sisters Collection. SHE CAN Wines includes a tropical Sauvignon Blanc and a sophisticated dry Rosé!
You can enjoy these wines where bottles can’t go—at the pool, at a sports game, on a hike, or at a summer backyard BBQ—pass the ribs! SHE CAN Wines reminds women that SHE CAN do anything (PS, check out our #SHECANChaseHerDreams hashtag on Instagram here).
As an environmentally conscious business, we look for ways to cut down on carbon emissions. Because aluminum cans are a lightweight material compared to glass, the carbon footprint to transport SHE CAN is substantially smaller. Since SHE CAN Wines’ launch, we’re excited to see it sold in CA, AZ, LA, OR, and WA.
SHE CAN Make a Difference
Scholarships from The McBride Sisters SHE CAN Professional Development Fund will be awarded in Fall 2019. The application deadline is SUPER soon (aka TOMORROW)! Get your application in by July 31st for your chance to win! For more information about the application process, please visit the official application page.
Each application requires a 1,000-word essay that describes your professional goals and how this scholarship will help you change the wine and spirits industry. Applications also must submit two letters of recommendation, as well as a completed and signed scholarship application that meets the criteria and includes all required attachments. This must be postmarked or electronically submitted by no later than 11:59 PM PST on July 31st, 2019 to be considered for the scholarship.
Good luck to all applicants!* We’re excited to review your applications and we thank you for submitting.
Remember, ladies, SHE CAN do anything!
*Applicants must be 21 years of age or older and a US Resident. Applicants must also have a minimum of three years of active employment within the wine and spirits industry or a related industry.
The 4th of July weekend is always full of fireworks, picnics, and bonfires. This year, it was also the weekend of the 25th Anniversary ESSENCE Festival 2019 in New Orleans, Louisiana! We had ourselves a BALL, let me tell you. ESSENCE Magazine’s “Party with a Purpose” has grown over 25 years to one of the premiere gatherings for Black music, entertainment and culture, drawing averages of 500,000 attendees annually. Pretty insane, right?!
This year and in the past, ESSENCE Fest has featured some true icons. We’re talkin’ Beyoncé, Barack Obama, Diana Ross, and many more. This year, we joined women and men from all over the U.S. to watch Missy Elliott shake it on stage and hear Michelle Obama speak her truth. Pharrell Williams, Mary J. Blige, Timbaland, Normani, City Girls—the list goes on!
ESSENCE Fest wasn’t just limited to the daytime hours. ESSENCE After Dark had fantastic comedy shows, late night jam sessions, live podcast recordings, and underground performances. As Billboard put it, the After Dark series gives “an opportunity for those not willing (or able) to commit to the nightly concert ticket price to enjoy smaller, niche-genre shows.” We couldn’t have been more psyched to attend again!
While we’re relishing in the 2019 ESSENCE experience, let’s rewind a bit to give you the full #EssenceFest picture…
“ESSENCE is where Black Women Come First for news, entertainment, and motivation.”
Founded in 1968, Essence Communications Inc. introduced ESSENCE, forever changing the magazine industry. With a monthly circulation of 1,050,000 and a readership of 8.5 million, they seek to inspire and empower their readers––male and female. Essence Communications Inc. has extended its influence to now include music, through the ESSENCE Festival. The 25th Anniversary ESSENCE Festival celebrated the empowerment of African Americans from all walks of life. As our friends at ESSENCE say, “it’s a party with a purpose.”
ESSENCE Fest is particularly special to us because we launched Black Girl Magic Riesling at ESSENCE Fest 2018 (view more 2018 ESSENCE Festival throwbacks here, here, and here). Since then, we’ve welcomed Black Girl Magic Red Blend and Rosé, making the Black Girl Magic family a badass trio of flavorful wines (visit our Wine Shop for more details)! This year, you better believe we brought the whole Black Girl Magic #GirlGang to NOLA.
Last year, we hosted an impromptu Midnight Brunch. Take a peek at last year’s brunch here! This year, we hosted our very first SHE CAN Chase Her Dreams Midnight Brunch, co-hosted with Chase Consumer Bank (and their fabulous CEO, Thasunda Duckett). Of course, we were also excited to include our favorite "Queen of the Kitchen,” Chef Mimi.
This year, we were also pleased to announce our sponsorship of The Jane Club Signature Work Space. The Jane Club is a co-working space for women in Los Angeles. They empower working mothers by providing 24/7 childcare, on-site spa treatments, and other much needed benefits. The Jane Club had an amazing pop-up at Melrose Mansion in Northern LA for the duration of the festival.
And last but not least, we were thrilled to see those of you who made it out to The Black Wine Experience from July 5th-6th, presented by Hue Society. The Black Wine Experience featured a number of celebrated multicultural brands, events, and our fellow vintners over the span of three days. Guests were offered to experience exclusive tastings, pairings, live demos, and awards.
We felt so grateful to have the opportunity to support other amazing Black-owned businesses at the 25th Anniversary ESSENCE Festival. We’re already counting down the days till next year’s festival, and we hope you are too! :)
Until Next Time...