Daily Wine News: Duckhorn Buys Calera

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-17-2017

caleraDuckhorn Wine Company has acquired Calera Wine Company, which has been referred to as “California’s Romanée-Conti”. The sale includes the Calera winery, time-honored brand, tasting room, estate vineyards, and all inventory and assets.

Esther Mobley reports on the sale in the San Francisco Chronicle. “Duckhorn wasn’t looking to buy a winery, said the company’s longtime president and CEO, Alex Ryan, but “when we happened to come across an extraordinary brand, we had no choice but to consider it.””

“By taking the preciousness out of wine service and by bolstering by-the-glass offerings, fast-casual restaurants showcase the pleasures of a fine-dining experience in 30 minutes or less.” In SevenFifty Daily, Shana Clarke looks at how fast-casual restaurants are approaching wine lists.

Can one man change the way an entire city thinks about wine? In VinePair, Adam Teeter profiles Patrick Cappiello, who is opening “a potentially game-changing new restaurant,” Walnut St. Cafe in Philadelphia. “Resisting wine snobbery is arguably the definitive characteristic of Cappiello’s impressive career.”

In Wine & Spirits Magazine, Wolfgang Weber talks with Ceri Smith of Biondivino in San Francisco about their shared passion for Ligurian wine.

In Decanter, Chris Mercer reports on the inaccuracies of Trump’s name-dropping his Virginia winery during a press conference on white supremacist violence in Charlottesville.

On the blog for First Vine, Tom Natan highlights a spaghetti recipe that includes one whole bottle of wine (!).

In Vinous, Josh Raynolds offers his thoughts on the 2015 vintage in Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

Save

Daily Wine News: Dennis Martin Tributes

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-16-2017

Dennis Martin, courtesy of Fetzer.

Dennis Martin (Photo courtesy of Fetzer.)

Wine Spectator reports that Dennis Martin, whose career at California’s Fetzer Vineyards spanned 30 years, died Aug. 13 after battling prostate cancer. He was 69.

Giancarlo Bianchetti, CEO of Fetzer Vineyards, pays tribute to Dennis Martin. “Dennis Martin was a terrific winemaker and inspiring colleague who left an indelible mark on those he knew.”

It’s hard to talk about wine without addressing elegance, terroir and minerality, says Matt Kramer in Wine Spectator. “Are they all overused? They sure are….But precisely because these words are so vital to fine wine—and because they have no comparable equivalents to take up the slack if banished from our vocabularies—we have no choice but to keep them employed, if only more judiciously.”

In Maxim, Jason Wilson suggests traveling to French wine regions beyond the well trodden Bordeaux and Burgundy.

In Meininger’s, Wojciech Bońkowski reports from the Italian-Slovenian border about how winemakers of two nationalities work hand in hand toward a new future.

In Wine-Searcher, W. Blake Gray profiles François Morissette of Chamboulé Winery, a Canadian natural wine enthusiast making waves in California.

Roger Morris explores Sardinian wines beyond cannonau in Palate Press.

Bloomberg does a tasting of 10 canned wines and recommends the ones they liked best.

Save

Daily Wine News: Parker’s Successors

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-15-2017

Robert_Parker“Parker’s influence is much greater than everyone else’s… The jury is still out as to the impact of his successors.” In the Drinks Business, Philip Staveley looks at how Robert Parker’s retirement has impacted fine wine prices and offers an analysis of the impact of The Wine Advocate opinion on wine price movement.

In VinePair, Kathleen Willcox wonders how the local wine shop will survive in the age of Amazon. “Retailers like Astor Wine & Spirits – one of the most beloved and well-established stores in the world – are probably safe… But everyone else? They should, as Galloway pointed out, be very frightened indeed.”

Amanda Barnes reveals how Argentina’s appellation system is changing in SevenFifty Daily. “The future of premium Argentine wine is undoubtedly in regional identity. It’s no surprise that this movement of new appellations is concentrated in the Uco Valley, which has seen a 65 percent increase in vineyards over the last decade…”

Grape Collective talks to Michael Seresin­ — a cinematographer whose work includes Midnight Express, Fame, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and more — about biodynamics, movies and why helicopters are a good business in New Zealand wine country.

In Wine Enthusiast, Steve Dollar talks to journalist Peter Hellman about his new book, In Vino Duplicitas, in which he tells the story of how Rudy K fooled the wine world.

Liza B. Zimmerman covers the trendiness of chilled reds in Meininger’s.

Jamie Goode explores the wines of Mexico at Texsom.

GQ taste tests the Game of Thrones wines. “They were all, not super surprisingly, not great.”

Daily Wine News: Saving Historic Zin

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-14-2017

zinfandel

Zinfandel.

Esther Mobley reports on how vintners are rallying to preserve Russian River Valley’s historic zinfandel vineyards in the San Francisco Chronicle. “When asked what their plans are for these properties, these newcomers all voice the same, unequivocal answer: Heck yes they’re keeping the Zin.”

Bradbury Kuett explores the love affair between the late Jim Harrison and Domaine Tempier. “The exultant, unabashedly richly textured mouthfeel of Mourvèdre in the red wines of Domaine Tempier was Harrison’s reverie, his lyric.”

Jancis Robinson offers tips for finding good-value, vintage-dated wines. “One way round the difficulty of squaring suitable vintage year with depth of pocket is to look for solera wines carrying the year when the solera was established.”

““What do you look for in a wine?” is not really an easy question to answer,” says the Washington Post’s Dave McIntyre , who does his best to explain how to evaluate a wine’s quality. “I emphasize the three stages of tasting wine: the attack, the middle and the finish.”

In VinePair, Laura Burgess considers the potential of hybrid grapes.

Elsewhere in VinePair, Madison Margolin looks at how rosé is disrupting Champagne’s grip on affordable luxury.

Sean P. Sullivan ponders the diversity of Washington state wines in Wine Enthusiast.

In the Wall Street Journal, Lettie Teague explores what it takes to be a sommelier. (subscription req.)

Daily Wine News: A Case For White Rioja

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-11-2017

R. Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia Reserva Blanco, a widely-loved White Rioja.

R. Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia Reserva Blanco, a widely-loved White Rioja.

In the New York Times, Eric Asimov and the wine panel explore White Rioja. “It is fair to say that white Rioja is not exactly a well-known wine, nor is it well understood. Many people are not even aware of its existence… The most surprising element in our tasting was the relative absence of fresh young whites…”

In RobertParker.com’s Wine Journal, R.H. Drexel meets the women of the newly formed group called Women in Wine, Central Coast. “I did notice that throughout the night, the women with whom I tasted mentioned flaws in wine much less often than my male friends, and that intrigued me. I enjoyed tasting for the positives in a wine, rather than searching for its faults.”

Eater has an excerpt of Peter Hellman’s new book, In Vino Duplicitas, about Rudy K and the biggest wine hoax in history.

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Mark C. Anderson takes a look at the year in California wine.

A new study suggests that frequent, moderate alcohol consumption might lower chance of developing Type 2 diabetes. Wine Spectator reports on the findings.

Grape Collective chats with Federica Nardello about Soave and her family’s love of the Garganega grape.

On the blog for Coastal Vineyard Care Associates, Heather Daenitz discusses crop thinning with the owners. “Thinning is all about vine balance; balancing the leaf surface with the crop load…”

Thomas Pellechia shares his excitement for Hungary’s dry furmint in Forbes.

Daily Wine News: All About Alcohol

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-10-2017

(Flickr: JonathanCohen)

(Flickr: JonathanCohen)

In Purple Pages, Richard Hemming explores alcohol’s role in our enjoyment of wine. “There is demonstrable diversity and complexity in wine… This is a large part of what makes wine so compelling. But another part of what attracts us to wine – let’s say generally between 12% and 15% of it, in fact – is alcohol, and it would be naive to deny this.”

In Forbes, Cathy Huyghe talks to Tim Hanni, who has been sober for 25 years, about alcoholism and addiction in the wine industry.

The San Francisco Chronicle launched their new wine-focused website, fittingly named The Press, an interactive guide to the best of California Wine Country.

In VinePair, Courtney Schiessl points out all the inaccuracies in Drew Barrymore’s recent rosé interview with Vogue.

Peter Liem reveals his list of favorite spots to explore for an authentic taste of Champagne in SevenFifty Daily.

Decanter gets sommeliers to share some of the funniest moments on the job.

Charles Smith announces a new name for his international company: Wines of Substance. Wine Business Monthly has the details.

In Meininger’s, Robert Joseph reflects on how people buy wine after struggling to find a good cheese to buy.

In Wine Enthusiast, Joe Czerwinski explores Australia’s Mornington Peninsula.

Daily Wine News: Vintage Reports & More

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-09-2017

Chablis. (Source: bourgogne-wines.com)

Chablis. (Source: bourgogne-wines.com)

Stephen Tanzer offers his thoughts on the 2015 and 2016 Chablis vintages in Vinous. “Today the 2016s appear to be more transparent to their terroirs but the best ‘15s may surprise us with their vineyard specificity after they’ve had a chance to burn off some of their considerable baby fat.”

In Meininger’s, Sascha Speicher goes on a pilgrimage to Domaine de la Romanée-Conti.

In the Daily Beast, Frances Dinkelspiel chats with Peter Hellman, author of In Vino Duplicitas: The Rise and Fall of a Wine Forger Extraordinaire, about the wine trade and how Rudy Kurniawan was able to con so many experts and collectors.

Wines & Vines reports that the 2017 sparkling wine harvest is well underway in California.

James Lawrence looks at the rising stars of South African Pinot Noir in Wine-Seacher.

In SevenFifty Daily, Jen Laskey talks to Mari Jones of the Emeritus winery in Sonoma, California, who shares her tips for starting a tasting room from scratch.

Prosecco pong is the new beer pong,” declares Sammy Nickalls, reporting on a newly-release party kit in Extra Crispy.

In the Drinks Business, Patrick Schmitt shares the results of this year’s Rosé Masters, which saw almost 200 entries.

Daily Wine News: DNA, VdF and More

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-08-2017

(Wikimedia)

(Wikimedia)

In Wine-Searcher, Liza B. Zimmerman reports on how Helix, a startup genomics company, wants to help you find which types of wines you are genetically engineered to prefer. “There’s a basic survey that new customers can do online… It is reinforced by the all-powerful saliva test, which should be able to skillfully delineate which of eight flavor profiles will work for each consumer.”

Jim Budd explores what the new Vin de France category, which is growing in popularity, means for the AOC in SevenFifty Daily. “The VdF category is gaining traction, but it’s not taking off everywhere. There is little to no appetite in Bordeaux or Burgundy to adopt VdF across the board in preference to the appellation.”

R.H. Drexel join’s Jeb Dunnuck’s website as a contributing editor, and chats with Michael Brughelli, the director of sales at Bien Nacido Vineyards in Santa Maria Valley, about the recent wildfires in Santa Barbara and more.

In Wine Spectator, Robert Camuto profiles Calabria’s Roberto Ceraudo. “Ceraudo converted to organic farming in 1987, after what he calls a near-death experience: As he was treating vines with a pesticide against vine moth, a hose on the power sprayer he was towing behind his tractor broke loose and doused him with the chemical…. that evening Ceraudo fell ill. He was admitted to a hospital, where he received a blood transfusion and was treated for 10 days.”

Jeremy Parzen shares some of his favorite white blends from Friuli in Wine & Spirits Magazine.

In Wine Enthusiast, Paul Gregutt explores the Oregon producers focused on old-vine grapes.

In Wine Business Monthly, Liz Thach contemplates the similarities and differences between the wine and cannabis industries.

Chase Purdy charts the growth and future of rosé in Quartz.

Daily Wine News: Rosé Exhaustion

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-07-2017

(Source: Wikimedia)

(Source: Wikimedia)

“While no one can deny that rosé rhymes with #allday and #yesway and s’il vous plait, for me, the truly telling coincidence is that it rhymes with okay.” In Eater, Sarah Miller is exhausted by the rosé madness. “Rosé’s ability to be firmly grounded in its basicness while somehow simultaneously transcending it is its most profound metaphysical feat…”

Tonight’s episode of American Greed is about the story of John Fox, his Ponzi scheme and Premier Cru. Wine writer Frances Dinkelspiel, who covered the story and trial in Berkeleyside, is interviewed in the episode, which airs at 10p ET/PC on CNBC.

In SevenFifty Daily, Katherine Cole looks at how some producers are experimenting with making Black Chardonnay. “To make Black Chard, you’ve got to be brave enough turn the prevailing protocol inside out. It feels almost like an act of violence.”

In the World of Fine Wine, Zachary Sussman considers the exclusivity of unicorn wines. “Rather than cultivating a more nuanced attitude toward wine, are we simply offering a new incarnation of the same old snobbery and one-upmanship that has always attended the pursuit of trophy wines? If all we’ve done is shift focus from the expensive to the esoteric, has anything fundamentally changed?”

In the Washington Post, Dave McIntyre explores the links between French and South American wineries. “I was interested in exploring French-influenced wineries to see how the Old World was influencing the new in this reach for quality. Instead I found the opposite…”

Italian wine giant Marchesi Antinori has bought Haras de Pirque winery in Chile, reports Yohan Castaing in Decanter.

In Wine-Searcher, W. Blake Gray reports on the Napa Valley harvest kickoff.

In the Wall Street Journal, Lettie Teague taste tests wines from Costco, Sam’s Club and Trader Joe’s in an attempt to determine whether their private-label wines deliver. (subscription req.)

Daily Wine News: Spain Embraces Terroir

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 08-04-2017

Vineyards in Rioja. (Flickr: thirstforwine)

Vineyards in Rioja. (Flickr: thirstforwine)

In Decanter, Jane Anson explains the new Rioja single vineyard designation and looks at what it may mean for Spanish wine. “It’s a decision that I feel pretty sure the Spanish wine industry will look back on as the moment that the country embraced the idea of terroir and all that goes with it.”

Eric Asimov visits Colares and writes about its distinctive wines and history in the New York Times. “The grapes are grown today just as they have been for centuries, except far fewer of them can be found. As recently as the 1940s, vines covered almost 2,500 acres of these sandy soils. Only about 50 acres remain…”

W. Blake Gray tests out Coravin’s new screwcap version for Wine-Searcher. “The one-word review for the Coravin screwcap: Unnecessary.”

People are spending less money on beer, and wine has something to do with it, says Fortune Magazine.

A Byzantine-era wine press was found by archaeologists in Israel’s Negev desert, reports Brigit Katz in Smithsonian.

In the Sacramento Bee, Mike Dunne looks at the Greek grape varieties like assyrtiko and moschofilero that are taking root in California.

The rosé boom continues… Wölffer Estate is now producing rosé gin. Alex Beggs has more information in Bon Appétit.

In Wine Spectator, Matt Kramer offers quick tips for buying reserve wines, universal serving temps, wineglasses and more