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Aug 22, 201808:05 AM
Happy Hour

All there is to sip and savor in New Orleans

Evidently We Needed That

If you own something the least bit out of the ordinary – like a swimming pool, an exotic pet, a fancy car, or multiple bottles of fine adult beverages – you likely have been exposed to esoteric products specifically designed and manufactured by creative people who feel like you have more money than sense.

I leave that judgment to the marketers and your credit card limits.

So along those lines, here are a few items that may be of interest to you, but which you have likely lived quite satisfactorily without thus far.


Neat Spirits Tasting Glass

According to the gang at Neat Spirits Glass, the shape of a glass, the quality of the material in the glass, how the glass delivers the liquid to your palate and nose, all can affect, even enhance, your appreciation of what you are imbibing.

These truths are beyond discussion. There is valid scientific proof that humans receive more of the essence from a liquid if the vessel from which we drink is of a particular dimension and designed to deliver the liquid not just into our mouth but also allows us to receive a full blast of aromas into our noses.

Olfactory is far more important to us humans than “taste.”

So it follows that a good-size industry can be built around building glassware. It has indeed come to pass, with the Neat Spirits Glass is designed and manufactured with the intent to add to brown and white spirits enjoyment.    


Wine Condoms

I am really not certain how to approach this product or even the topic. But I guess if you are over 21, we are fine to discuss safe wine drinking.

We all know, or should know, that once a wine is opened, the air and other factors like temperature, begin to degrade the quality of the wine. Wine Condoms are of the familiar shape and they slip over the top of the bottle. One thing rings true here since pushing a cork back into the bottle is often a bigger challenge than just drinking the remaining contents of the bottle after you have determined you have reached your fill. Whether you will respect the wine in the morning is another topic entirely.

Wine condoms come in the familiar package, which can be stored in a wallet or purse. You know about this already, don’t you? The manufacturer claims, when the product is slipped over the neck of an open bottle that these helpers keep out a lot of air and other impurities. It is rumored that product degradation is slower.  

I don’t think we are talking about safe wine drinking necessarily, but if a wine condom can make the pleasure last a little longer, then that’s a good thing. Don’t you agree? Who knows, maybe you will get lucky and keep the wine in good order for an extended period of time so it does not become flabby and disappointing. What are you snickering at?


Strange wine and spirits bottle holders

Inevitably someone would develop something that holds a bottle of wine or spirits and the apparatus itself would not enhance the drinkable product and would itself be the star.

I’m of the persuasion that the liquid can tell a grand enough story without the distraction of toys. Then again, maybe I am not appreciative enough to give full credence to odd metal sculpture-like creations of fishermen, hunters, golfers, tennis players, runners, football players or other recreational paraphernalia involving only the holding of adult beverage bottles.


I do have a fine sense of humor, maybe even warped. Hell, I told you about the condoms, didn’t I? But I evidently don’t appreciate ersatz depictions of whatever activity interests the host or hostess rather than putting more effort and investment into the liquid. This on the surface seems like one of those situations where the re-gifting possibilities are immediately evident.

Then again, how else to explain fruit cakes, which are no doubt on an endless voyage from household to household?




Read Happy Hour here on myneworleans.com on Wednesdays, and listen to The Dine, Wine and Spirits Show, hosted by Tim, every weekday, 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. on WGSO 990AM and streamed, as well as stored (podcast), at www.wgso.com. Also, check out Last Call, Tim’s photo-feature about cocktails in New Orleans, every month in New Orleans Magazine.



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Happy Hour

All there is to sip and savor in New Orleans


In New Orleans, when the subject is wine and spirits, it is very difficult to leave Tim McNally out of the discussion. He is considered one of the “go to” resources in the Crescent City for counsel and information about adult beverages and their place in the fabric of life in this great city.


Tim is the Wine and Spirits Editor, columnist and feature writer for New Orleans Magazine; the Wine and Spirits Editor and weekly columnist, Happy Hour, for www.MyNewOrleans.com; creator and editor of his own website, www.winetalknola.com; all in addition to his daily hosting duties on the radio program, The Dine, Wine and Spirits Show, on the air at WGSO – 990AM, every weekday, 3- 5 p.m, and streamed live on www.wgso.com.


Over the years, Tim has proved to be an informed interviewer, putting his guests at ease, and covering tactile and technical information so that even a novice can understand difficult agricultural and production concepts. Tim speaks with winemakers, wine and spirit ambassadors, distillers, authors, people who stage events and festivals, and takes questions from listeners and readers, all seamlessly blended together in a program that is unique in America.


Tim’s love of wine actually came about many years ago from his then wife-to-be, Brenda Maitland, a noted journalist in her own right, and together they have traveled to the major wine producing areas in the US and Europe, seeking first-hand information about beverages that give us all so much pleasure.


They were instrumental in the founding of the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience, a major national and international well-regarded festival of its type. They both continue to be involved with the planning and staging of this multi-venue, five-day event now over twenty years old.


Tim is also considered one of the foremost professional wine judges in the US, being invited to judge more than 11 wine competitions each year, including the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition (the largest competition of American wines in the world, with more than 6,000 entries), the Riverside, CA International Wine Competition, San Francisco International Wine Competition, Atlantic Seaboard Wine Competition, Indiana International Wine Competition, Sandestin, Florida Wine Festival Competition, the State of Michigan Wine Competition, the U.S. National Wine Competition, and the National Wine Competition of Portugal.


Tim is a guest lecturer to many local wine and dine organizations, and speaks each year to the senior class in the School of Hotel and Restaurant Management at Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama.


Staying abreast of the news of the wine and spirits world is a passion for Tim, and he is committed to sharing what he knows with his listeners and readers. “Doing something I love, with products that I truly enjoy, created by interesting people, coupling the experience with culinary excellence, and doing it all in the greatest city in America,” are the words Tim lives by.


It’s a good gig. 




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