Wednesday, January 17, 2007

To Your Health!

I just had to try it. Pomegranate wine. Who knew? I picked up a bottle from Whole Foods, yesterday.

Intrigued but skeptical, I expected the worst. And, guess what? It is not half bad. Not at all…
Obviously, this semi-sweet red wine has its limits. I would not suggest drinking it throughout an entire meal. However, the sweet / tart of the pomegranate balanced nicely against rich and creamy brie and crackers. I imagine it could be quite delightful with dessert… a lemon tart or chocolate brownie, perhaps?

This wine comes from Armenia where pomegranates grow in abundance. The Armenian Wine website has more info. Here are the highlights:

Cultivated since prehistoric times, this fruit appears throughout history as a symbol of fertility, royalty, hope, and abundance. Celebrated in art, mythology, religious texts and literature for centuries, pomegranates appear in Greek mythology, Egyptian papyrus, and are depicted on the floor mosaics of Pompeii. Pomegranates appeared in China a century before the Christian era, and have been mentioned in the Old Testament several times, referred to as “rimmon.”

The word “pomegranate” is derived from Middle French pome garnete which literally means "seeded apple” (one contains as many as 800 seeds). Recent preliminary studies extol the health benefits of pomegranates. A University of California study suggests that “the total antioxidant capacity of 100 ml of pomegranate juice is two to three times that of 100 ml of red wine and of 100 ml of green tea.” Israel's Institute of Technology indicates that pomegranate seed polyphenols possess potent cardiovascular protection and anti-inflammatory effects, which means that if consumed daily over a long period of time, pomegranates may help to combat cancer, and prevent hardening of arteries.

Researchers in England are studying the possibility using pomegranates in the developement of an HIV anti-viral agent, and in India, a preliminary study shows pomegranate seeds to have potent antimicrobial activities against Bacillus subtilis, Escherichia coli, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

So what are you waiting for? Do you need any better excuse to indulge in a bottle of Pomegranate wine? Consider it research.

No comments: