What We’re Reading —

The Most Popular Liquor Brand for Each NFL Team, According to Female Fans

In a new survey made up of over 14,000 women, Influenster found that a majority of female fans prefer beer during NFL games, but a hefty portion (45%) are drinking liquor and cocktails. The​ ​product​ ​discovery​ ​and​ ​reviews​ ​platform also took things a step further by figuring out exactly which liquor brands are favored by fans of all ​32​ ​NFL​ ​teams (see the full list here, from People).

 

How the Napa Fires Could Affect Taste, Price Of Wine

Smoky flavors in wine are a possibility in the aftermath of the fires charring Napa, Sonoma and other parts of Northern California wine country. The effect, called smoke taint, occurs when compounds in wildfire smoke are absorbed by vines and berries, ultimately becoming unwelcome flavors in wine.

“These off-flavors, described as ‘smoky,’ ‘bacon,’ ‘campfire’ and ‘ashtray,’ are usually long lasting and linger on the palate even after the wine is swallowed or spit out,” according to a smoke taint primer from ETS Laboratories, which performs scientific analyses for the wine industry.

The wildfires ignited Sunday and Monday and, according to the latest reports, have caused at least 17 deaths and destroyed at least 2,000 homes and businesses. With this volatile situation, it’s impossible (and far too early) to say with certainty which wineries or how much of the 2017 crop might be affected by smoke taint.

Nevertheless, there’s concern for fruit still in the vineyard — much of the harvest already is in — or fruit undergoing fermentation in open-air containers. Even Napa Valley’s famed cabernet sauvignon grapes could be at risk.  Read more from USA Today here.

Posted in What We're Reading | Leave a comment

F.Y.I. —

Testing Breath Instead of Blood to Measure Weight Loss

Experts advise anyone looking to shed extra kilos to eat less and exercise more. One way is with endurance training, during which the body burns not only carbohydrates such as sugar, but also fat. When exactly the body begins burning fat can now be determined by analyzing, for example, biomarkers in the blood or urine. Scientists at ETH Zurich and the University Hospital Zurich have now developed a method for the highly convenient, real-time monitoring of lipolysis by testing a person’s exhalations during exercise.

When burning fat, the body produces by-products that find their way into the blood,” explains Andreas Güntner, a postdoc in the group of ETH Professor Sotiris Pratsinis. In the pulmonary alveoli, these molecules – especially the volatile ones – enter the air exhaled by the person. The most volatile of these lipid metabolites is acetone. Güntner and his colleagues have developed a small gas sensor that measures the presence of this substance. The sensor is much more sensitive than previous sensors: it can detect a single acetone molecule in hundred million molecules. It also measures acetone exclusively, so the more than 800 other known volatile components in exhalations do not affect the measurement.

Major individual differences

In collaboration with pulmonary specialists at the University Hospital Zurich led by Malcolm Kohler, Professor and Director of the Department of Pulmonology, the researchers tested the functioning of the sensor in volunteers while they exercised. The test subjects completed a one-and-a-half-hour session on a bicycle ergometer with two short breaks. Researchers asked the test subjects to blow into a tube that was connected to the acetone sensor at regular intervals.

“We were able to show how the acetone concentration in the exhalations varies greatly from person to person,” says Güntner. Scientific opinion used to hold that athletes only begin burning fat after a certain period of physical exertion and on reaching a certain heart rate, but this view is now outdated. The measurements taken by the researchers in Zurich showed that lipolysis in some test subjects did, in fact, only start towards the end of the one-and-a-half-hour training session. In the other volunteers, the measurements showed that their bodies began burning fat much sooner.

Control measurements showed that the new measurement method correlated well with the concentration of the biomarker beta-hydroxybutyrate in the blood of the test subjects. This blood analysis is one of today’s standard methods for monitoring lipolysis.

Interaction with nanoparticles

The sensor developed by the scientists uses a chip coated with a porous film of special semiconducting nanoparticles. The particles are tungsten trioxide that the researchers have implanted with single atoms of silicon.

Development of the chip began seven years ago when ETH Professor Pratsinis and his colleagues discovered that tungsten trioxide nanoparticles interact with acetone if the atoms of the nanoparticles are arranged in a certain crystalline structure. The interaction reduces the electrical resistance of the chip coated with the nanoparticles, and this phenomenon can then be measured.

Originally, the idea was to use the chip to diagnose diabetes, because the exhaled breath of patients with untreated type 1 diabetes contains high concentrations of acetone. Since then, however, the scientists have shown that the sensor is in fact sensitive enough to detect the very low acetone concentrations in a person’s exhalations during exercise.

The chip used in this study is the size of a 1-cent euro coin, but the researchers are working to refine the measurement technology so that it will be possible with much smaller chips. The goal is to offer the chip in a manageably sized device. “This would allow athletes and people who want to lose weight to check for themselves when their bodies begin to burn fat so that they can optimize their training regimen,” says Güntner.

Cheap, small and yet highly sensitive

Highly sensitive acetone measurements were already possible with other instruments, for instance mass spectrometers, which are large laboratory devices that cost several hundred thousand Swiss francs. Continue reading

Posted in FYI | Leave a comment

Penna. Gov. Wants to Securitize PLCB Profits

Here’s how Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf plans to solve the state’s budget crisis:  Unless the legislature finalized the budget, Wolf said, he will securitize profits from the state’s liquor system. It will raise $1.25 billion to pay off nearly all of Pennsylvania’s prior year deficit and significantly reduce the need for additional temporary Continue reading

Posted in Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) | Tagged | Leave a comment

DeKuyper Acquires Cherry Heering

De Kuyper Royal Distillers acquired Cherry Heering from the brand owner Peter F. Heering. Cherry Heering Liqueur, probably the oldest cherry liqueur in the world, was established in 1818. It is Continue reading

Posted in Acquisitions, Distillery News | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Mission Brewery Seeks to Raise Funds from Ordinary People

From now through Dec. 2, “unaccredited investors” can buy stock in San Diego’s Mission Brewery. Continue reading

Posted in Brewery News | Leave a comment

Southern Glazer’s Marks 10 Years with NYC Wine & Food Festival

Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits said it is celebrating its 10th consecutive year as the host of the Food Network & Cooking Channel New York City Wine & Food Festival presented by Coca- Continue reading

Posted in Spirits, Wine | Leave a comment