The Vino Pairing Optimization: A Honolulu BYOB Guide for Italy's Greatest Red Wine

Sure, Thomas Jefferson's foremost imprint on history will be as the author of the Declaration of Independence and as the third President of the United States. More interesting, I am sure you would agree, is Jefferson's oenological obsessions. Indeed, he was unequivocally America’s first (and best) Sommelier-in-Chief. Although this passion was primarily found in the vineyards of France, Jefferson was noted amongst the early admirers of Nebbiolo da Barolo during his vinous sojourn through northern Italy in 1785 (although the wine at this time was much different and notably sweeter). Throughout his years as Secretary of State and as President, Jefferson served up hundreds of bottles of Nebbiolo for his esteemed guests at Monticello.

Thomas Jefferson is in good company. I, too, am a huge fan of Nebbiolo.

Unfortunately, I lack access to a cellar that rivals Monticello. Fortunately, I have a few wine enthusiast friends with which to share a bottle and some vinous musings. As to the latter, I found opportunity to sit down with my good friends at Flavors of Italy (Honolulu's preeminent wine merchants) to discuss all things Nebbiolo. Discussion promptly proceeded to uncorking a few specimens (for the purpose of extensive research, of course), and pairing them with delicious local cuisine. Life doesn't get much better than this ...

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A Modicum of Live Musings on ThinkTech Hawaii's Law Across the Sea

As you may know, my moonlighting adventure as a food and wine blogger is only half the narrative. By day, I am an attorney in Honolulu, Hawaii with Chang Iwamasa LLP, specializing in corporate formation and governance, real estate transactional matters and non-profit organizations. 

Today (March 19) I had the privilege to discuss the integration of my law practice with Musings by the Glass on ThinkTech Hawaii's Law Across the Sea Program with host (and fellow attorney) Mark Shklov. Buckle up; one should never casually commence my modicum of [live] musings. At least, for your sake, there were rigorous time limitations.

The interview can be found here.

This might not shock you, but I decided to bring a few vinous friends to partake in the occasion. Every good conversation can benefit from a bottle … or two.

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An Ode to Saint Patrick at Ó Buachalla's Drunken Moose Pub

One of the best holidays of the year is upon us!  Every Seventeenth of March my residence is painstakingly converted into Ó Buachalla's Drunken Moose Pub in celebration of everyone's favorite patron saint of Ireland. [Sincerest apologies to those loyal patrons whose favorite patron saint of Ireland is Brigit of Kildare or Saint Columba]. Saint Patrick is honored in style with food, fellowship, Irish drinking songs, and a modicum of frivolity. Party on...

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The Food and Wine Convergence: Chefs and Somms Meet for Hawaii’s Biggest Annual Food and Wine Festival

Does your ideal vacation entail sipping wine on the tropical shores of a beautiful Pacific Island, with picturesque scenery and world-class cuisine? Hawaii may have just the festival for you. The Hawai‘i Food and Wine Festival, now in its seventh year, is a preeminent epicurean destination event definitely worth exploration. Celebrity chefs, prestigious vineyards and skillful mixologists collide in a melange of flavor and excitement. This is unequivocally the most impressive and renowned food and wine event in the state.

Given the festival’s prodigious reputation, it is difficult to fathom that nearly a decade ago Hawaii did not have a major wine event. A small band of food professionals and enthusiasts, including local celebrity chefs Roy Yamaguchi and Alan Wong, sought to remedy those unfortunate circumstances. The result is a festival spanning three islands and featuring over 100 esteemed master chefs, culinary personalities, and wine producers in an accord of culinary traditions and experiences that are certain to impress any palate. With significant support and momentum, the festival now dazzles attendees at some of the most beautiful locations Hawaii has to offer. Luxury and style meet for the ultimate food and wine experience.

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Finding the Mele in Kalikimaka: Hawaiian Christmas Music and Wine Pairings

Thanksgiving is officially in the books and the Christmas madness is in high gear. In every store and street corner, one must fight the bevy of busy patrons procuring their holiday treats, trees and trinkets. Stressed and overwhelmed? My reliable method of relaxation during this bustling holiday season is the strategic alliance of a refreshing vinous beverage and festive Christmas tunes.

In this post, I briefly ponder the fascinating musical heritage of Hawaii, while recommending a few wine and Christmas album pairings that will help you to celebrate the season in [Hawaiian] style. Fear not; we have many more options from which to choose than Mele Kalikimaka.

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The Ho-Lee Alliance: Ho Farms and The Pig & the Lady Present a New Farm-to-Table Paradigm

The Pig & the Lady, located in Honolulu’s Chinatown district, has developed a steadfast following for its unique Vietnamese-inspired menu, whimsical personality and family narrative. Chef de cuisine Keaka Lee has elevated the original concept with elegant fusion dishes that emphasize local ingredients and fresh, vibrant flavors. Keaka’s style focuses on a seasonal menu that highlights the restaurant’s affiliations with the community. For Keaka, strong relationships between chefs and farmers are central to achieving a sustainable, effective local food network. Chefs and farmers partner to provide a complete farm-to-table culinary experience. 

This symbiotic relationship was on display when The Pig & the Lady joined forces with Ho Farms, a family farm located on Oahu’s North Shore, to host a collaborative six-course farm-to-table dinner with wine pairings designed to stimulate conversations about food, community and culture. Sounds informatively tasty.

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