Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Tea Time with Brandy: Bonfire Wine

It's no secret that Brandy likes a little drink now and then, but while she may sip a cocktail more often than not, there are times she likes to class things up and pour herself a good old glass of wine.  "I'm not so much a wine snob, per say, but I do require my wines to be smooth, bold, and largely made of alcohol," as Brandy likes to say.  

While she may not be picky about her wines, Brandy does appreciate innovation, so when she recently heard about a new brand, marketing itself as the perfect portable wine for things like tailgating, picnics, and outdoor concerts, she was pretty intrigued.  Bonfire Wines, founded by Chicago-based entrepreneur and packaging industry veteran Eric Steigelman, are wines that are not only unique in taste but available in eco-friendly and convenient pouch packaging.  The wines come in two varieties, Ember (a red blend) and Ignite (a white blend), and retail between $15.99 - $16.99 at local Whole Foods and Mariano’s.  The wine in the Bonfire Wine pouches chills in 65 percent less time than a traditional bottle and its built-in spout lets you enjoy wine by the glass while keeping the rest fresh for four weeks.  Each pouch holds 1.5 liters (the equivalent of two bottles of wine). 

"Say what you like about boxed or bagged wines," Brandy said as she triggered the spout to pour out the Ember variety into her extra large glass, "But box, bag, or bottle is certainly no indication of the quality these days."  Brandy found the wine to be pretty smooth, a little acidic, but generally pleasantly drinkable, and she really enjoyed the spout technology, as it was much less unwieldy than a traditional cork.

To pair with the wine ("You're supposed to pair food with wine so you don't look like a total drunk," Brandy says) Brandy pan fried a New York strip steak with simple salt and pepper seasoning, then sauteed some butternut squash, brussels sprouts, and portobello mushroom to make a sort of fall vegetable hash.  The fat in the steak as well as the crisp, earthy fall vegetables were a great match for the full bodied red.  "It may seem like a nice dinner, but I wouldn't be opposed to having this for brunch either," Brandy mused, "Fry up a couple of eggs and call this a steak skillet!"

Brandy has now become a pretty big fan of Bonfire wines, as she especially appreciated their portable nature, which quite possibly means her quilting circle and knitting guild meetings might never be the same.

The writers of this blog were provided with product free of charge in exchange for an honest review.

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