For the wine in the ocean brine, it’s time

Winemaker Gustavo Gonzalez (left) and Mira Winery president Jim Dyke chat in Feb. 20 before dunking four cases of red wine (right) into Charleston Harbor. (Robert Behre/Staff/File)

The bottles of wine that were deliberately sunk in Charleston Harbor three months ago to test the effects the ocean has on taste and aging are ready to resurface.

Mira Winery said it will retrieve the four cases of its 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon from the ocean floor Tuesday. The wine will undergo chemical analysis and taste-testings after it’s uncorked.

“With several factors that impact wine production, aging is traditionally done in a very controlled environment to ensure optimum outcome,” said Mira winemaker Gustavo Gonzalez. “With our experiment, we’re testing the impact of unpredictable tides, waves and temperature on the wine’s taste.”

Napa Valley-based Mira began its project in February by submerging the vino in custom-made cages equipped with gauges that will provide water temperature data from the past three-months. On Tuesday, Mira will announce the next phase of the experiment. The California winery’s president is Charleston resident and political consultant Jim Dyke.

“We think this is just the start of the ocean’s gift to quality wine,” Dyke said. “Our experiment is the beginning of a learning process that will provide an additional prism to view the impact of the elements on the aging of wine.”

No more back-of-the-envelope guesstimates for budding real estate moguls at the College of Charleston School of Business.

Houston-based ARGUS Software Inc. has donated a program valued at $440,000 to help students learn how to analyze real estate investments.

The gift will help students calculate the value of a property with mulitple leases. It also will run the numbers on a project that is under development over a period of time, it was announced Thursday.

The software, which will be incorporated into the curriculum this year, also will help students determine how much cash flow a building will generate, or manipulate variables to see they affect property values.

“Most major real estate companies, financial institutions, appraisers, investors, developers and contractors that use institutional capital apply this software when analyzing investment opportunities,” said Elaine Worzala, director of the college’s Carter Real Estate Center. “These skills will be incorporated into our undergraduate real estate curriculum to better prepare our students for their careers.”

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Almost a year after announcing it intentions to expand to Charleston, CertusBank last week formally applied to federal regulators for persmission to open its first local branch. It will be housed in a newly constructed office building that the Upstate-based lender will anchor at 174 Meeting St., just south of the City Market and in the heart of the downtown financial district. No opening date was given.

Shareholders of Southocast Financial Corp. have 15 percent more skin in the game. The Mount Pleasant-based bank owner declared another stock dividend at its recent annual meeting, awarding them 15 shares for every 100 owned. It did the same late last year.

“After four years of struggling with the worst economic period since the Great Depression, we believe Southcoast is beginning a new period of growth and profitability as the company approaches its 15th anniversary,” CEO Wayne Pearson wrote in a note to stockholders.

Wentworth Mansion in Charleston provides the best hotel service in the U.S., according to Travel + Leisure Magazine’s “World’s Best Awards.” The Peninsula in Hong Kong edged out the downtown inn by a mere tenth of a point to claim the No. 1 spot in the world, based on reader votes.

Managed by Noreen Marchant, Wentworth Mansion is part of the Charming Inns hospitality venture in downtown Charleston. The lodging and dining group includes the John Rutledge House, Fulton Lane Inn, Kings Courtyard Inn and Circa 1886 Restaurant.