Daily Wine News: Priorat’s Evolution

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

(Flickr: noviceromano)

(Flickr: noviceromano)

In the New York Times, Eric Asimov explores Priorat reds. “From its modern inception, Priorat has generally been a burly wine, rich and alcoholic, as garnacha and cariñena, also known by their French names grenache and carignan, can often be. Yet over the last 20 years it has rarely stayed the same… As it has changed, has Priorat’s innate identity emerged? Or is this another in an series of metamorphoses, determined by whatever drives wine styles?”

Riesling, the grape most associated with Alsace and Germany, has found a home in Bordeaux, reports Sophie Kevany in Meininger’s. “In a surprise move, St Emilion’s Château Petit Val announced it will produce about 600 bottles of Bordeaux-grown Riesling under Vin de France (formerly French Table Wine) regulations.”

“Legendary winemaker Jean-Bernard Delmas, best known for his decades of work at Bordeaux first-growth Haut-Brion, [has] died,” reports Suzanne Mustacich in Wine Spectator. “He was 83.”

Antonio Galloni shines a spotlight on Rosso di Montalcino in Vinous.

In SevenFifty Daily, Rémy Charest looks at the ways vintners use cover crops in vineyards to help improve soil health and reduce costs.

In the Daily Camera, Doug Brown finds that cabernet franc can stand up to Colorado’s climate.

In Wine Enthusiast, Kristine Hansen ponders the benefits of merging meditation with wine tasting.

Daily Wine News: French Wine Tariffs

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 10-03-2019

glass_glasses_restaurant_drink_wine_glass_wine_clear_liquid-989609.jpg!d“The Trump administration slapped 25% tariffs on French wine, Italian cheese and single-malt Scotch whisky — but spared Italian wine, pasta and olive oil — in retaliation for European Union subsidies on large aircraft,” reports Reuters.

In Bloomberg, Elin McCoy looks at the recent, positive change in Chilean wines. “The style of many icon wines started to change in the last decade amid criticism from wine critics and consumers… In a land where cabernet used to be king (it still accounts for the majority of plantings), 88 other varieties are thriving, and the hot ones are cinsault, carignan, and grenache.)

Paul Adams delves into the science behind perceived minerality in wine in SevenFifty Daily.

In Wine-Searcher, James Lawrence looks on “the bright side” of climate change in European wine regions: “…a few members of the trade are looking on the bright side. They refuse to accept or endorse the doom mongering, the pessimism and the likely conclusion that our planet is fast approaching a point of no return. In the short term, at least, they believe climate change and rising temperatures have been, and will be good for business.”

In National Geographic, Alejandra Borunda looks at how climate change is changing French wine.

Sarah E. Daniels highlights Montreal’s best natural wine bars in Wine Enthusiast.

In the Manual, Mark Stock looks at why the beer world is embracing the term “terroir.”

Daily Wine News: Gravner’s Grace

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 10-02-2019

(Photo credit: Gravner)

(Photo credit: Gravner)

Robert Camuto profiles Josko Gravner in Wine Spectator. “After touring the wine world, from Burgundy to Napa, over the years, Gravner felt disillusioned with modern enology’s techniques. He became sick of what he calls “conventional wines,” yearning for something more essential in winemaking… At the same time, he became intrigued with ancient methods of fermenting in terra cotta vessels used in the country of Georgia and travelled there in 2000 to learn more. In 2001, Gravner began fermenting his whites in qvevri buried in his cellar. In 2006 he followed with his reds.”

“Skin contact is the new pét-nat (sparkling wine that’s made by taking still-fermenting wine and letting it complete fermentation in the bottle), which was the new rosé at its prime. So, what comes next, trend-wise, after skin contact?” Eater discovers piquette.

In Wine-Searcher, Don Kavanagh compares the price of wines in Pennsylvania, where wine is sold under state control, and elsewhere. “In total, the average variation between Pennsylvania prices and US prices is 6 percent in favor of the Keystone State.”

In Wine Enthusiast, Christina Pickard highlights the producers transforming New Zealand pinot noir.

A new investment fund that enables wealthy wine lovers and institutions to buy vineyard stakes in both renowned and up-and-coming regions, from Piedmont to Kent, is being launched, reports Chris Mercer in Decanter.

In Grape Collective, Lisa Denning talks with Andrea Cecchi (of Cecchi Winery) about the family history and how they have kept the quality of the wines consistent as they have grown.

Peter Saumur looks at how Crémant de Loire is helping the Loire Valley winemaking region in the Buyer.

Daily Wine News: How Important Is a Wine’s Story?

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 10-01-2019

(Flickr: JonathanCohen)

(Flickr: JonathanCohen)

How important is a good story when it comes to marketing and selling wine. Robert Joseph offers his thoughts in Meininger’s. “If there really is a purpose behind your business that’s worth talking about, go ahead and share it. And if you can credibly reverse-engineer one – like fostering friendship (remember Coca Cola’s ‘I’d like to teach the world to sing… in perfect harmony’ advertisements?) – well, by all means do that too. Never forgetting the crucial importance of ‘credibly’. But, to be blunt, above and beyond any of this, just make something that people want to buy and think is good enough to buy again.

Antonio Galloni says he’s impressed with the wines of Santa Barbara in his report for Vinous.

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Esther Mobley looks at what billionaire Gaylon Lawrence Jr.’s recent purchase of the Haynes Vineyard means. (He also purchased Heitz Cellar and Wildwood Vineyard in 2018.) “The playbook for these sorts of deals would suggest that Heitz is looking to absorb Haynes Vineyard wines into its winemaking. But Lawrence and McCoy have a different plan in mind. Wildwood and Haynes are financially separate from Heitz, and each will become its own estate winery.”

In the Wall Street Journal, Lettie Teague explains why a good Beaujolais vintage means great value for consumers. (subscription req.)

The Zinfandel Chronicles’ Tom Lee cautions readers to not dismiss the 2017 California Zinfandel vintage.

In Decanter, Michaela Morris highlights leading winemakers in southern Italy. (subscription req.)

In Wine Spectator, James Molesworth visits Tim Mondavi at Continuum and tastes the entire library of Napa Cabernets. (subscription req.)

Daily Wine News: Rosé Champagne

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-30-2019

pink champagneJancis Robinson considers how the perception of rosé Champagne has changed in recent years. “Once it was very obvious that, with a handful of exceptions, most of them regarded rosé champagne as a sort of off-cut whose quality didn’t really matter. But all this has changed, perhaps because of the rise in popularity of rosé still wine, perhaps because warmer summers have improved the quality of the dark-skinned Pinot grapes that are an essential ingredient, or perhaps chefs de cave just got round to caring about this particular string to their bow.”

In Forbes, Cathy Huyghe explores the potential of Pennsylvania wine. “Prime agricultural land with a rich history. Vineyards in an unexpected or even “frontier” region, producing award-winning wines. And a cast of characters – descendent, farmer, grower, winemaker – with chutzpah in spades, who are just crazy and also just sane enough to place a well-reasoned bet on a seemingly irrational gamble. That’s how I would characterize Pennsylvania wine right now.”

Virginie Boone explores Sonoma’s newest appellation, the Petaluma Gap, in Wine Enthusiast. “There are about 4,000 vineyard acres in Petaluma Gap. They’re planted primarily to Pinot Noir, which amounts to about 75% of the appellation’s total acreage, but are also home to Chardonnay and Syrah. The area is defined more by vineyard sites than wineries…”

Jason Wilson offers a deep dive into the large, confounding world of Cognac in Vinous.

In Bon Appétit, Marissa A. Ross ponders the wine that changed her life: Olivier Lemasson’s R-13.

In the Washington Post, Dave McIntyre looks at orange wine’s comeback.

Patty Dietz explores modern wine coolers worth trying in Eater.

In Meininger’s, Robert Joseph explains what makes the latest edition of The World Atlas of Wine so important.

Daily Wine News: The Essence of Terroir

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-27-2019

Pedro Parra

Pedro Parra

Alder Yarrow explores the wines of terroir expert Pedro Parra. “These wines are quite simply the most exciting wines I’ve ever tasted from Chile, and have completely reset my understanding of what Chile may be capable in terms of expression of terroir. To the extent that they represent the practical application of Parra’s theories when it comes to soil and terroir, I couldn’t imagine a more thorough and powerful validation of his work as a soil geologist.”

There is an enormous amount of high quality information about battling climate change locked up in the wine industry. It’s time to start exchanging that knowledge, says Robert Joseph in Meininger’s.

In Slate, Stephen Harrison looks at how the push for the white wine emoji has generated discussion about emoji diversity.

In the New York Times, Eric Asimov offers notes on the Cinsault wines from Chile’s Itata Valley and announces what’s up next for Wine School: Argentine Malbecs.

“Portuguese wine company Esporão AS has purchased the historic Quinta do Ameal estate, in the heart of the Vinho Verde appellation. With this move, Esporão continues its strategy of expansion from its original home in the Alentejo region to more northern regions, such as Douro and Minho, home of Vinho Verde,” reports Luis Antunes in Wine Spectator.

On WineBusiness.com, Jim Gordon offers a look into Hyde Vineyards’ night harvest.

In Wine Enthusiast, Courtney Schiessl makes the case for decanting white wine.

Daily Wine News: Mulling Over Mouse

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-26-2019

mouseIn the San Francisco Chronicle, Esther Mobley explores the mysterious and not fully understandable phenomenon of mouse. “Natural wine has long preached an acceptance of cosmetic blemishes: Where a typical California winery will go to great lengths to avoid so-called faults like volatile acidity, brettanomyces or reduction, many natural winemakers embrace these phenomena (at least in small volumes) as part of a living wine’s intrinsic, warts-and-all beauty. But I have yet to encounter a winemaker, natural or otherwise, who would accept the presence of mouse. Will this become the natural-wine world’s first universal zero-tolerance policy?”

Aaron Goldfarb charts the resurgence of Bartles & Jaymes wine coolers in Esquire.

In VinePair, Evan Rail explores the Old World tradition of drinking partially fermented grape must— known as federweisser and other names in German, vin bourru in French, burčák in Czech, and murci in Hungarian—during harvest season.

CNN Travel looks at the boom of Georgia’s wine industry. “Today, Georgian wine is recovering from nearly 100 years of isolation and destruction by a system that industrialized viniculture and institutionalized the practice of making bad wine.”

In Penta, Abby Schulz delves into the small world of highly educated and experienced private consultants who advise collectors of fine and rare wines.

In Decanter, Jess Lander highlights 10 of the best wine bars in Napa and Sonoma.

Jill Barth offers tips on how to get the most out of a wine club in Forbes.

Daily Wine News: Considering Zweigelt

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-25-2019

Zweigelt. (Photo credit: Austrian Wine)

Zweigelt. (Photo credit: Austrian Wine)

In Grape Collective, Valerie Kathawala talks to several producers and importers about the new scholarship on the Nazi allegiances of viticulturist Dr. Fritz Zweigelt, who the Zweigelt grape is named for, and looks at how Austria has and has not worked through this chapter of its history—and what might change in the future.

In Wine Enthusiast, Matt Kettmann explores the stories of immigrants finding the American Dream through wine in California.

Esquire covers the release of the new Portland Trail Blazers wines, featuring a chardonnay and pinot noir.

Mike Veseth, the wine economist, compares two wine “tribes”: terroirists and naturalists. “Terrorists think they are making natural wine since they seek to draw out the nature of the place where the grapes were grown. Naturalists want more. Easy to see why there is tension, but the the differences seem to cut deeper.”

In the Daily Beast, Max Watman reports on how climate change is helping English sparkling wines.

On his Do Bianchi blog, Jeremy Parzen is also thinking about climate change, especially about how it’s impacting Barolo vineyards.

Imbibe Magazine highlights this fall’s best new wine and drink books.

Daily Wine News: Recognizing American Wine’s Latinx Community

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-24-2019

Rolando Herrera, co-founder/winemaker at Mi Sueño Winery. (Photo credit: Mi Sueño Winery)

Rolando Herrera, co-founder/winemaker at Mi Sueño Winery. (Photo credit: Mi Sueño Winery)

In Wine Enthusiast, Jill Barth highlights six Latinx wine experts changing the face of American wine. “With ties to the earliest years of grape growing in the U.S., these communities have shaped the landscape of the bottles we enjoy. These are the people woven through a viticultural history that extends through statehood, the Mexican Revolution, Prohibition, the Great Depression and World War II.”

“Every great wine country needs beautiful agricultural landscapes, delicious local foods, warm hospitality and wine that can reel you in. Brda, Slovenia, has all that.” In Wine Spectator, Robert Camuto says Brda has it all, including some excellent Rebula wines.

Elin McCoy reports in Decanter that this year’s Sonoma Wine Auction raised a record-breaking $6.1 million; all proceeds go to local charities.

In Terroir Review, Meg Houston Maker visits Château De Poncié in Fleurie, where she learns about the ancient estate’s new biodynamic practices.

Aaron Ayscough interviews Justin Chearno of Williamburg’s The Four Horsemen in Sprudge Wine.

In VinePair, Jennifer Simonson looks at how Albariño from California’s Central Coast is evolving.

In Fortune, Jim Clarke explores the expanding market of white Bordeaux wines.

Is Languedoc the next classic wine region of France? It might be, according to Matthew Stubbs MW.

Daily Wine News: Hot & Dry

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-23-2019

grapes_grapevine_fruit_plant_cultivation_blue_green_food-1236015.jpg!dIn the New York Times, Amy Yee reports on how scientists are testing techniques for growing vines in a hot, parched future in a research vineyard in southern Israel. “The researchers are focusing on this harsh environment for a reason: to study how wine grapes can grow in the desert conditions that dominate Israel. That knowledge will become even more valuable in a world with more frequent droughts and heat waves.”

In Wine-Searcher, Vicki Denig explores how Europeans view American wines, and why they’re resistant to change. “In the mind of the European consumer, will American wines ever really be “as good” as those produced closer to home?”

While some producers in Chile are excited by the resurgence of native grapes, others insist that stalwarts like Cabernet Sauvignon should not be forgotten in the rush to herald the likes of País and Carignan, according to Phoebe French in the Drinks Business.

On JancisRobinson.com, Tamlyn Currin considers sustainability and wine after listening to Steve Matthiasson discuss the topic at a sustainability workshop.

In the World of Fine Wine, David Williams reviews Jane Anson’s Wine Revolution: The World’s Best Organic, Biodynamic, and Natural Wines.

In Wine Enthusiast, Matt Kettmann explores the wines of Santa Barbara.

Dave McIntyre looks at how Carlton is redefining Willamette Valley wine country in the Washington Post.

In Forbes, Katie Kelly Bell highlights eight essential wine books.