Nebbiolo Grapes

Kamran A. Khawar oversees Product Development, Design and Operational and Legal matters at VinoVue, a technology company that he co-founded in 2011. In his spare time, Kamran A. Khawar is an avid wine enthusiast and likes to share his wine experiences with friends and colleagues.

As one of the more fickle wine grapes to grow, committing to the production of Nebbiolo can be a true labor of love. Nebbiolo has a long growing season; it will flower early but ripen late, increasing the time during which things can go wrong. It needs lots of sunlight and usually will get the south slopes with great exposure; but it also needs wind protection, and prefers a certain elevation. If it rains heavily after the grapes turn red, the quality can tank. Nebbiolo is picky about the climate and soil types it will grow in, but when it chooses to grow in a particular soil, it is extremely expressive of even the slightest micro-nuances of the soil. The buds are also picky– often the first ones are infertile, so in the vineyard you have to account for this with more space. In the post-phylloxera era much thought needs to go into rootstock selection as well, and in the Langhe, rootstocks that can withstand high amounts of active lime are a necessity.

As an older grape variety that is centuries — and possibly over a millennium — away from its mother plant, Nebbiolo mutates easily and has many clonal variations. Some of Nebbiolo’s offspring have even been confused as clones.


Football Season is here!

Kamran A. Khawar oversees product development and operational and legal matters at VinoVue, a technology company that he co-founded in 2011. In his spare time, Kamran A. Khawar is an avid fan and season-ticket holder of UCLA Bruins football.

The UCLA Bruins football team has played in Los Angeles for nearly 100 years, and in 2014, it won 10 out of its 13 games. The UCLA Bruins offer a number of ticketing options, including season tickets, individual tickets, and group tickets. Choosing the best ticketing option is a matter of personal preference.

For instance, four types of season tickets are available: bench, family plan, general admission, and UCLA student. Many fans choose general admission seating, but you can use the online seating map to choose the best seat for you.

Another popular option is to purchase single-game tickets. In 2015, those age 12 and under attend games for just $5 (note that youth tickets are only available on game days). All other single-game tickets are available in advance and start at $33. To buy tickets, visit

Travel Lessons Learned!

Kamran A. Khawar oversees Product Development, Design and Operational and Legal matters at VinoVue, a technology company that he co-founded in 2011. In his spare time, Kamran A. Khawar is an avid traveler and has learned the art of traveling.

The world is mostly safe
I have never been mugged. And this is not for lack of trying! From Prague, Budapest to Bejing, I have walked alone at night in “dangerous” cities such as these and have not so much as been glared at.

Alone time is good
Alone time, both at home and on the road, is a “processing” period where you subconsciously and consciously decide which elements of your recent experiences are worth holding onto.

Home is where your passion is
I’m currently at my friend’s place outside of Budapest, Hungary.  It’s the seventh time I’ve visited, and I know her family and friends so well I feel like I’m part of their lives. But familiar faces are not a prerequisite for feeling fulfilled or content! The key to overcoming feelings of longing and even nostalgia is finding the things that bring you joy in life in your new surroundings, and getting over the fact that the faces and street plans are different.

Modern Wine!

Kamran A. Khawar oversees Product Development, Design and Operational and Legal matters at VinoVue, a technology company that he co-founded in 2011. In his spare time, Kamran A. Khawar is an avid wine enthusiast and likes to share his wine experiences with friends and colleagues.

Wine was undoubtedly first created quite by accident, when the natural yeast cells on grapes fermented the juice that had been squeezed from them. While it would be nice to think that this prehistoric first wine was savored for its bouquet and delicate flavors, the reality is that it was prized for the effect of the alcohol on the drinker. The fermentation of the juice had a side benefit, though. Once fermented, the grape juice was stable, less susceptible to bacterial contamination, and could be carried with you. This meant that these people could range over areas that did not have water sources, and exploit a wider range of environments. It thus was the first potable, portable beverage.

Modern wine is the result of a complex set of choices made by grape growers and winemakers; grape variety, harvesting at the desired ripeness, fermentation vessel, wild or introduced yeast, length of skin contact, barrel aging, fining, filtering and many more which provide us with the amazing range of flavors and aromas that are found in the finished product.

Whale Tales: A Reading List

Whale Tales: A Reading List.

Preparing for International Travel

Kamran A. Khawar leads VinoVue, Inc., and has learned a great deal about the wine industry. In addition, Kamran A. Khawar travels internationally frequently.

International travel requires more planning than trips close to home. Therefore, you should prepare thoroughly and make sure that you have all the necessary materials and documents in order before leaving.

For instance, you should make sure that your passport won’t expire in the near future. While the United States may allow a citizen to travel up until the passport’s expiration date, other countries might not allow the visitor to enter if the expiration date is less than six months in the future. Therefore, you should renew your passport in a timely manner before traveling to avoid this potential issue.

As well as finalizing documentation, you should determine how you will make purchases while abroad. If you plan to use credit cards, you should call the credit card companies to alert them of the international travel. Additionally, you should see if the card has a foreign transaction fee. This type of fee can be avoided with certain credit cards, and you might want to get one of these cards if you go abroad frequently, as these fees can add up.

Storing your Wine!

Kamran A. Khawar, President of the consumer and business software company VinoVue, Inc., recently started his own wine focused company. In this role Kamran A. Khawar frequently participates in wine tastings along with winemakers and other wine enthusiasts.
There is no hard rule to which temperature your wine should be at when storing. But the most preferred place is somewhere cool and dark to avoid sunlight and heat, an excessive amount of which could ruin any good wine.
As a general rule, the lesser the storage temperature and amount of light received, the better the wine will hold its quality over time and develop harmonious complexity.
Most wines won’t benefit from serving at a temperature over 70F (21C). Most reds are served between 60F-68F (16C to 20C), with a little over that beginning to accentuate the wines flaws.
Much like in aeration, there is a very fine line between perfection and ruining your wine:
  • Red wine is usually best served just below room temperature, so that it still has some element of refreshment to it and not an overly warmed, boozy scent that makes the cheeks overly flushed. Serving red too cold results in a much more unpleasant acidic taste and more noticeable tannins. Red wine typically has aromas and chemical characteristics which are supressed or dimished at lower temperatures.
  • White wine is enjoyed most from between 44F – 60F (6C to 16C). Where the wine serving temperature has gone down, the perception of acid increases, keeping it crisp and with that fresh feeling.
  • Sparkling wines most commonly served at fridge temrerature around 38F – 45F  (3C to 6C). There is a fear that serving it too warm could dissipate the bubbles and ruin its liveliness. The risk is avoided by being drunk straight out of the fridge, when in fact a sparkling could be allowed to develop and be enjoyed much more when allowed to stand for twenty minutes after being refrigerated. Serving your wine too cold and the wine becomes empty of scent and taste with no real expression. But too warm could risk the connotation of “flatness”.