Daily Wine News: All About Bordeaux

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-18-2019

bordeaux-wine-cork-984x500In Bloomberg, Elin McCoy offers her impressions of the 2018 Bordeaux vintage. “The best wines are exceptional: concentrated, layered, velvet- and silk-textured, pure and succulent. Tasting barrel sample after barrel sample is usually tough, with puckering palate fatigue, but not this year. The wines combine the mouth-filling plushness of the 2009s with the ripe structure of the 2015s and 2016s, plus a cool, bright energy that made me crave another taste.”

Jane Anson also shares highlights from the en primeur tastings in Decanter. (subscription req.)

In Vinous, Neal Martin attends a vertical of Rauzan-Ségla that spanned more than a century, and charts the course of the Margaux Second Growth from its origins under Pierre de Rauzan to the present day under Nicolas Audebert.

In Wine Spectator, Robert Camuto shares his takeaways from the 2019 Vinitaly international wine fair.

What’s the best way to organize supermarket products to facilitate consumer purchases? Mike Veseth, the wine economist, considers the best system for wine.

Annalisa Girardi considers the negative impacts of Italy’s prosecco boom in Forbes.

In the Cork Report, Mikhail Lipyanskiy checks out the Hudson River Region.

In the Dallas News, Alfonso Cevola explores a new generation of kosher wine.

Daily Wine News: America’s Black Wine Consumers

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-17-2019

(Flickr: JonathanCohen)

(Flickr: JonathanCohen)

Why is the wine industry ignoring black Americans’ $1.2 trillion buying power? Nneka M. Okona explores the issue in VinePair. “The majority of wine advertising and marketing, and many of the industry’s cultural gatekeepers, don’t appear to recognize the diverse preferences or buying power of the black market. They aren’t invested in exploring “what we like, do day-to-day, or about our culture,” Townsend says. This stands in stark contrast to the world of spirits. Certain brands recognize the buying power of black people, who in turn transform their sales and cement their space in the cultural lexicon.”

“François Pinault, owner of Château Latour and Bernard Arnault, owner of luxury group LVMH, have pledged to donate hundreds of millions of Euros towards rebuilding Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris,” reports Ellie Douglas in Decanter.

In Palate Press, Mike Madaio embraces the obscure with Slow Wine USA. “I particularly appreciate the visionary move away from a points-based system to score wines, instead choosing to focus on sustainable farming practices and the relationship between winery and the place it comes from, or, in their words, the “Slowphilosophy.””

Jason Haas reflects on 30 years of Tablas Creek Vineyard, which his late father Robert Haas founded in 1989.

The Born Digital Wine Awards winners were announced. Here are the winners.

On JancisRobinson.com, Alder Yarrow offers a spring update from California wine country. (subscription req.)

In Food & Wine, Peter Lane on the beauty of Franciacorta.

Daily Wine News: The Next Generation

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-16-2019

Vineyard in Central Otago. (Source: Wikimedia)

Vineyard in Central Otago. (Source: Wikimedia)

“Watching the growth of this young region, it’s interesting to think that the progression might not simply be a case of slow, gradual improvement, but rather a punctuated equilibrium, with periods of stasis followed by short, intense bursts of change.” Southeast on the South Island, the cool hills of Central Otago have emerged as New Zealand’s prime source for pinot noir. In Wine & Spirits Magazine, Jamie Goode reports on four of the most talented growers.

On his blog, Jamie Goode explores the problems with wine lists. “Too often, wine lists fall into two camps. The first, is a high-end establishment with a book-like list of many hundreds of wines, where it’s simply a list showing the name of the wine and the price. Without a good sommelier, this sort of list is not at all user-friendly… The second is the sort of wine list you find all over the place, usually in more non-wine-focused establishments…”

On WineBusiness.com, John Gillespie explores the next generation of wine consumers. (Just don’t call them Generation Z.)

In Decanter, Michaela Morris looks at how a new focus on specific terroir zones and clarity over wine styles is giving a boost to Bardolino. (subscription req.)

Winegrowers in Burgundy set fires in their fields Sunday night to counteract the effects of frost on their vines as a cold front swept the region.

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Shwanika Narayan looks at how California wineries are being shut out from China amid the trade war.

China’s Noble Dragon is a long-established brand, and one that is growing in prominence around the world. In a blind tasting at ProWein, the Drinks Business set out to see how it stands up against the best in its class.

Daily Wine News: The Rocks District

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-15-2019

The Rocks District signature cobblestones. (Wikimedia)

The Rocks District signature cobblestones. (Wikimedia)

The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater AVA hasn’t been seen much on front labels. W. Blake explains why in Wine-Searcher. “…almost every wine from TROM-F (not an official acroynm, but boy, it needs one) says Walla Walla Valley on the label. Then there’s this problem: the guy who pioneered viticulture in TROM-F, Christophe Baron of Cayuse, doesn’t like the name. So he doesn’t use it, even though until this year he was the only winery that legally could, as his winery is actually in Milton-Freewater.”

In Bloomberg, Patrick Gillespie reports on how Argentina’s wine industry has brought a boost of tourism to the country during its recession. “The number of foreign tourists in Mendoza, Argentina’s wine hub, jumped 58 percent in February from a year ago, well ahead of the 19 percent increase nationwide, government data published last week shows. Wine exports are up 8 percent so far this year, contrasting with an overall decline in the country’s exports during the same period.”

Jancis Robinson considers wines that have gone “from naff to nice,” including Moët Champagne, Australian Chardonnay, lambrusco and Soave.

On WineBusiness.com, Stacy Briscoe explores Idaho’s growing wine industry.

In SevenFifty Daily, Mark Stock looks at why American winemakers are embracing Melon de Bourgogne.

Mekita Rivas explores the rise of Miami’s wine scene in Wine Enthusiast.

In Bon Appétit, Emily Schultz discovers the beauty of pairing lambrusco and pizza.

Daily Wine News: Refreshing Reds

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-12-2019

(Flickr: theloushe)

(Flickr: theloushe)

In the New York Times, Eric Asimov and the tasting panel dive deep into Languedoc reds. “We sensed that producers in Languedoc, as has happened in much of the world over the last decade, have backed away from pushing the boundaries of ripeness in the vineyard and wringing out the last measures of fruit and power in the winery. The result was a set of wines that on the whole were far fresher than they might have been 10 years ago.”

“When it comes to leading the conversation about climate change, the wine trade is in an ideal place to take a role,” says Jamie Goode. “Wine is fun, and its consumption is joyous. People like wine. Rich folk buy wineries. Because of this, the stories around wine can be powerful, and can get through the confirmation bias defences of climate change deniers.”

With Eugenia Keegan at the helm in Oregon, Jackson Family Wines (JFW) is guiding the valley’s evolution into an elite, luxury region. In return, the valley is doing the same for JFW, reports Katherine Cole in SevenFifty Daily.

Does great wine terroir exist if no one is there to appreciate it? Cathrine Todd explores the answer in relation to Cariñena in Forbes.

In Vinous, Stephan Tanzer does a vertical tasting of Beaulieu Vineyard’s Georges de Latour Private Reserve Cabernet, California’s first cult Cabernet.

Mike Veseth, aka the wine economist, considers the rising import threat to U.S. wine.

“Sometimes it feels as if my beat here at The Chronicle consists mostly of reporting on wineries getting sold.” Esther Mobley reflects on this week’s big sale (Grace Family Vineyards) in the San Francisco Chronicle.

In the Wall Street Journal, Lettie Teague looks at how “restaurateur Drew Nieporent changed the way wine is served and understood in this country.” (subscription req.)

Daily Wine News: Labeling Laws

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-11-2019

(Flickr: Daniel Gasienica)

(Flickr: Daniel Gasienica)

Starting in 2021, wine producers who sell their wines in the EU will have to reveal their ingredients. In Meininger’s, Robert Joseph has a few thoughts on what this might mean wine producers.

In PUNCH, Leslie Pariseau profiles Paul Kalemkiarian, the president of the Wine of the Month Club, who founded America’s first wine club in a strip mall pharmacy.”

On JancisRobinson.com, Richard Hemming reacts to all the recent news stories about the health risks of consuming alcohol. “The point I want to make is this: even if I accept all the supposed health risks of drinking alcohol, then I am still going to drink it. And my reasons behind that decision reveal that the value of wine goes far beyond health.”

“González Byass has acquired Ribera del Duero winery Fournier,” reports Lisa Riley in Harpers UK.

In Wine Enthusiast, Linda Gradstein explores the world of kosher wine.

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Esther Mobley reports on “a new era for Grace Family Vineyards.”

In Grape Collective, Christopher Barnes on how English art star Sarah Lucas collided with Austrian natural wine pioneer Meinklang.

The future of weed is high-end wine pairings, according to Jeff Gordinier in Esquire.

Daily Wine News: Changing Reputations

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-10-2019

glass_glasses_restaurant_drink_wine_glass_wine_clear_liquid-989609.jpg!dIn Wine & Spirits Magazine, Luke Sykora checks in with three Sonoma Coast growers—Cobb, Flowers and Hirsch—to taste how their vineyard-expressive Pinot Noir wines are faring with ten or more years of age.

W. Blake Gray reports on changes coming to Red Mountain, Washington’s “grand cru” region, in Wine-Searcher. “In 1985, there were just 60 planted acres and the site was unknown to all but the geekiest of wine fans. Now two extremely expensive projects at opposite ends of the mountain promise to permanently change its reputation in very different ways.”

In Wine Enthusiast, Roger Voss explores Cabernet Franc from the Loire. “A succession of superb vintages (2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018) has only helped solidify the idea that Cabernet Franc bottlings from the central Loire Valley deserve to be taken seriously.”

Wine Spectator reports that Dick and Ann Grace have sold Grace Family Vineyards, one of Napa’s original cult Cabernet Sauvignon producers. Kathryn Green, a Napa vineyard owner, purchased the Victorian house, a small winery and a 3-acre vineyard as well as the inventory and brand.

“Symington Family Estates and Quinta do Noval have declared the 2017 Port vintage, in the rare occurrence of declaring consecutive vintages,” reports Ellie Douglas in Decanter.

As Italian regions produce more 100 percent Sangiovese wines, winemakers find themselves grappling with a new problem—deposits of quercetin. Michaela Morris reports on the issue in Meininger’s.

Alsace is “closer than ever” to imposing mandatory sweetness guides on wine labels, according to the Drinks Business.

Daily Wine News: The New Natural

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-09-2019

Australia's Delinquente wines. (Source: Frankie)

Australia’s Delinquente wines. (Source: Frankie)

In SevenFifty Daily, Betsy Andrews looks at how a group of U.C. Davis enology grads is upending expectations with their micro-label, minimalist natural wines. “Together, these young producers are changing the traditional Davis trajectory. Rather than working their way up through the ranks by making conventional wine at brand-name wineries, they’re doing their own thing… In the process, they’re upending expectations of natural wines. Using their education to make technically correct, low-input bottles, this group represents an exciting new direction for American wine.”

On JancisRobinson.com, Jason Wilson reports that things are at last looking up for Australian wines in the U.S. thanks, in part, to the natural wine movement. (subscription req.)

Biodynamics is a growing segment of the wine industry, but is it worth the trouble and cost of conversion? Vicki Denig explores the answer in Wine-Searcher.

“Bordeaux goes where the money is. And the money is now with the Chinese.” In the New York Times, Adam Nossiter paints a picture of how a growing number of new Chinese owners are changing Bordeaux’s chateaus.

In Wine Spectator, Suzanne Mustacich looks at the potential of Bordeaux’s 2018 vintage in the U.S. “The wines show great promise. But in recent years, the futures have largely failed to sell-through to consumers, leaving négociants and retailers to hold them until the wines are released. And there’s no indication that this year will be any different.”

Edith Hancock explains why rosé wine is ideal for innovation in the Drinks Business.

In Wine Enthusiast, Nicole A. Taylor writes about the changing perceptions on drinking wine pregnant. “By the final trimester, I had observed that only highly trained somms understand the subtleties serving humans baking babies.”

Daily Wine News: Movers and Shakers

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-08-2019

Napa vineyards. (Wikimedia)

Napa vineyards. (Wikimedia)

The 85-year-old Wine Institute is moving its headquarters to Sacramento from San Francisco, reports the Sacramento Bee.

W. Blake Gray reports at the options following the passing of Napa’s development bill in Wine-Searcher. “Why would the most successful wine region in America – and arguably the most successful in the world – want to restrict agriculture, when its grapes are so valuable?”

Antonio Galloni remembers winemaker Gianfranco Soldera in Vinous.

In Meininger’s, Robert Joseph offers his thoughts on mandatory ingredient listing on wines.

In the Wall Street Journal, Lettie Teague looks at Americans’ fascination with wine grapes. (subscription req.)

On Robert Parker’s Wine Journal, R.H. Drexel profiles the wines of Pam Starr. “Though all of Starr’s wines are intentional, vibrant and very balanced, I favor the Crocker & Starr Cabernet Francs. They are glorious representations of this underrated variety, and are the very definition of tension, precision of flavors, great structure and a texture that begs for a wide host of foods.”

In Wine Enthusiast, Tammie Teclemariam looks at how smart phones are changing how we drink wine.

In Grape Collective, Marco Salerno delves into Calabrian wine.

Daily Wine News: Constellation Brands Sells 30 Bargain Wines to Gallo

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 04-05-2019

Constellation Brands

Constellation Brands

Constellation Brands has announced the sale of more than 30 of its less expensively priced wine and spirits brands to E&J Gallo for $1.7 billion, reports WineBusiness.com. The transaction will give Gallo about 22 percent market share by volume of the US wine market.

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Esther Mobley looks at what Constellation’s sale of the bargain-priced wines really means. “The main story in this Gallo-Constellation deal is the story of premiumization, that contemporary coinage referring to the growing demand for higher-priced products. Over the last decade, sales of wine in the sub-$9 segment have consistently declined. Now Constellation is essentially abandoning that segment entirely, focusing instead on the higher-priced (i.e. above $11) wine brands it is retaining…”

W. Blake Gray also considers what the sale means for the wine industry at large in Wine-Searcher.

In the New York Times, Eric Asimov explores Australia’s natural or “lo-fi” wine movement. “This counterculture is not a single group of winemakers working toward one goal, but a spectrum encompassing many different degrees of rebellion from the mainstream Australian standards set in the 1990s.”

Some have objected to Chinese-owned châteaux changing the names of the property. But is this ‘simply carrying on centuries of Bordeaux tradition’? Jane Anson explores the answer in Decanter. (subscription req.)

Eater says that the natural wine recommendations on Kourtney Kardashian’s newly launched lifestyle blog Poosh are actually good—and affordable. Bon Appétit’s Emily Schultz is also impressed.

Wine Enthusiast has teamed up with Amazon’s Alexa to provide wine and food pairing tips.