Friday, April 2, 2010

Cheap Wine Etc

Why do we sometimes drink cheap wines? Well, in my case, it is because not all restaurants AND bars (specially) serve GOOD wines by the glass. So what a girl that does not drink hard liquor or beer, do when she wants a glass of wine and is out at a nice but not super swanky venue ?

Well she makes the mistake of drinking a glass of crappy wine. And maybe a second glass, because you know, it’s a party and Spring is here…and let’s have some fun. Did someone say, “another glass of wine please!” NOOO!!! UGH.

People, this is a not good situation. The high price we pay for crappy wine the morning after is no joke. Today is Friday. A work day. Why do I feel like HELL!!! ARGH!!!!!

Ok, yeah, there is the DRINK PLENTY of water when drinking wine (specially bad wine) technique, but am I the only one that forgets to do that? Anyway, today I am having one of those days…and I didn’t even drink that much! Serioulsy, it’s just the QUALITY of the wine! Pretty amazing how much it can affect you.!

Here are some interesting factoids on this subject:

1. A bad harvest. If you are drinking wine that comes from a country where a small change in the climate can make a big difference to the quality of wine (France, Germany, New Zealand), then in a bad season the wine contains many more substances that cause hangovers.

2. Drinking it too young. Almost all red wines and Chardonnay are matured in oak barrels so that they will keep and improve. If you drink this wine younger than three years there will be a higher level of nasties that can cause hangovers. If left to mature these nasties change to neutral substances and don’t cause hangovers. As a rule of thumb, wine stored in oak barrels for six months should be acceptable to drink within the first year. If the wine is stored for twelve months or more in oak barrels, it should then be aged at least four years. Some winemakers have been known to add oak chips directly into the wine to enhance flavors (especially in a weak vintage and especially in cheaper wines); this can take years to become neutral.


What actually causes hangovers from wine? (

The action that contributes most to the hangover is the inhibition of vasopressin, a chemical in the body that keeps your kidneys from secreting water. This is a major problem. With a low concentration of vasopressin, your body will evacuate its water supply, causing dehydration.

This is the primary cause of the characteristic headaches of a hangover from wine. Because your body is dehydrated, it will pull water out of your brain, causing it to shrink. As your brain shrinks, it pulls on the membranes, resulting in the perception of pain.

Another major cause of hangovers from wine is a class of molecules called congeners. Congeners are a by product of alcoholic fermentation and are present in high quantities in red wine. Congeners are usually present in higher concentration in darker liquors.

As alcohol is metabolized, it leaves behind a molecule called acetaldehyde. Acetaldehyde is normally present in the body, but is quickly metabolized into a harmless molecule called acetate. When there is a high volume of alcohol in the bloodstream, acetaldehyde builds up and cannot be metabolized; this then contributes to the symptoms of a hangover.

Unfortunately, once you have reached a certain point, the hangover in inevitable. But taking the right steps will help insure that the effects are minimized.

Once you have a hangover, how can you minimize the effects?


1. Drink fruit juice. “Fruit juice contains a form of sugar called fructose, which helps the body burn alcohol faster,”

2. Eat crackers and honey. Honey is a very concentrated source of fructose. Believe it or not, sauerkraut juice is said by some to neutralize congeners. (More proof that sometimes the cure is worse than the disease!)

3. Drink bouillon. Broth made from bouillon cubes or any homemade soup broth will help replace the salt and potassium your body loses when you drink.

4. Replenish your water supply. “Alcohol causes dehydration of your body cells,” “Drinking plenty of water before you go to bed and again when you get up the morning after may help relieve discomfort caused by dehydration.”

5. Take B-complex vitamins. Drinking drains the body of these valuable vitamins. Research shows your system turns to B vitamins when it is under stress—and overtaxing the body with too much booze, beer, or wine definitely qualifies as stress, says Dr. Blum. Replenishing your body with a B-complex vitamin capsule can help shorten the duration of your hangover.

6. Eat amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. Like vitamins and minerals, they can also be depleted by use of alcohol. Replenishing amino acids plays a role in repairing the ravages of a hangover. Amino acids are also available in capsule form at most health food stores.

7. Have one or two cups of coffee. Coffee acts as a vasoconstrictor—something that reduces the swelling of blood vessels that causes headache. But don’t drink too much!

8. Eat a good meal. If you can tolerate it, that is. A balanced meal will replace the loss of essential nutrients. But keep the meal light; no fats or fried foods. Toast, cereal, fruit and a light yogurt are easier to digest than eggs and dairy. Even though, when you are really hungover you crave those eggs!!! I know I do!!!. But maybe lighter is better!

9. Some say "have a beer". Haha.

10. Conclusion:

Weird thing about this situation is that a strange amnesia happens, and in the not so far distant future, some way some how..I would see myself, at a bar celebrating with friends with a glass of chepo wine in my hand, AGAIN....

So today, I have a mantra going in my head that goes like this " never ever drink cheap wine again, never ever drink cheap wine again". Hopefully I will remember this mantra once I enter the next bar, and maybe this time I will order a club soda!

Cheers peeps! Enjoy your weekend and try not to OVERINDULGE!


  1. Thanks for all the information! great class in wine and hangovers...
    Hope you are feeling better now!

  2. Falando em vinho ruim, só lembro daquele que vendia em São Roque, quando vocês eram pequenos, e que tinha o nome inspirador de RUBRONHOL... lembra? kkkkkk

  3. HAHAHAHAHA...Que nome!!! Claro que eu não lembro do nome, mas lembro de uns garrafões de vinho...era de lá? Umas mega garrafas com uma "palhinha" do lado de fora...