Daily Wine News: Exploration

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-26-2014

Flickr, *clairity*

Flickr, *clairity*

Alder Yarrow, refreshingly, explains why “it doesn’t really matter what wine you serve with Thanksgiving.”

Jancis Robinson searches for the world’s oldest wines.

“It might seem strange, then, that a growing number of ambitious winemakers across the U.S.—from areas as disparate as California and Oregon to the North Fork of Long Island  and the Finger Lakes—have recently tried to interpret the genre by producing a nouveau of their own.” In Punch, Zachary Sussman writes about the rise of American Noveau.

Wine-Searcher reports that “Vega Sicilia is looking to buy a winery in France or California.”

Elsewhere in Wine-Searcher, W. Blake Gray chats with Adam Mason of Mulderbosch.

“Carrying grapes out to the nearest road was time-consuming and also risky. So, Maule came up with another solution: airlifting grapes out from inaccessible areas by helicopter.” In his latest letter from Europe, Robert Camuto visits Casimiro Maule in Negri’s Inferno vineyards.

In Wine Spectator, Ben O’Donnell goes searching for $20 single-vineyard Côte d’Or Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

Thanks to the Coravin, wine by the glass has gone high-end at hotels around the world.

When a $7 million “Vine Trail” is finished, “people will be able to bike, run and walk between Napa and Yountville on a path that is separated from auto traffic.”

“For those wanting to get an idea of what a Virginia wine tastes like, 2014 will be one of the best expressions of who we are.” Jim Law of Linden Vineyards offers a harvest report to JancisRobinson.com.

For Thanksgiving, Jonathan Lipsmeyer is spending two days with 20 people. Check out what he’s bringing.

Daily Wine News: Raw Revolution

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-25-2014

tiopepe2“Although this attention has been long overdue for the category as a whole, one of the most compelling developments of the nascent sherry renaissance has been the emergence of a new style known as en rama, which roughly translates to ‘on the branch’ or ‘raw.’” In Grape Collective, Zachary Sussman writes about Sherry’s “Raw Revolution.”

“I would drink these wines every day of the week and twice on Sunday. In fact, I drank two bottles of Rendezvous last Sunday.” In Food & Wine, Dan Dunn names “The Best Wineries to Visit in Virginia.”

In Vice, Estela Beverage Director Thomas Carter explains why “Picking a Good Wine Should Be Like Shopping at a Record Store.”

Alder Yarrow tastes through several wines that set the bar for what Portugal can do.

Meanwhile, in the Mercury News, Laurie Daniel discovers that Portugal is producing “a wave of good-quality table wines made from a dizzying array of grapes.”

Andrew Jefford names some of his favorite Chardonnays out of South Africa.

In Palate Press, Mary Cressler is impressed with Sicily’s wine offerings.

“It doesn’t matter if it pairs with the food. Who the hell cares about that? Your racist uncle? Your asshole brother-in-law? Don’t be stupid. Thanksgiving is the one day each year you can use wine to make a point.” Ron Washam offers some Thanksgiving wine advice.

Daily Wine News: Wine Hell

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-24-2014

In Star Chefs, Chris Struck chats with Raj Parr.

Flickr, judepics.

Flickr, judepics.

“Instead of spending time in the vineyards, getting to grips with the culture of a wine region, I’ll be stuck in an air-conditioned office, tippy tapping into my laptop as I work through a flight of 120 Douro reds before lunchtime. Welcome to my version of wine hell.” Jamie Goode worries about “the modern ‘wine critic.’”

“Nobody drinks Sauternes anymore,” and according to Eric Asimov, “that is a shame.”

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Jon Bonné gives thanks for the Anderson valley.

“No star chefs or highly composed plates here. Restaurants are in the middle of nowhere, like lights dotting a dark country road.” On NPR, Christine Ciarmello visits Anderson Valley, which “is the way Napa used to be.”

In the southern Rhône in 2013, according to Jancis Robinson, “the results are really rather delicious.”

“For those who are willing to be patient and suffer the uncertainty, there are clear rewards.” Lettie Teague heads to Napa Valley to figure out if its Cabs can age.

Elsewhere, Teague visits two New York restaurants that offer only domestic wines.

“It is just not enough to write or not write, based on a whim. Consumers/readers know the difference, and will follow the most informed, informative, and influential communicators over time” In Harpers, Damien Wilson contends that wine bloggers are an endangered species.

In France, the national appellation body is reviewing an application for the Cote d’Or appellation. And that’s causing a rift between winemakers and negociants. Panos Kakaviatos reports.

In VinePair, Adam Teeter argues that “A Ratings System Designed To Help Consumers Is Tearing the $40 Billion Wine Industry Apart.”

Daily Wine News: Futures Crash

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-21-2014

1982-bordeauxEven though it’s only November, Will Lyons is wondering if “2014 will be the vintage that brings the whole Bordeaux wine futures system crashing down.”

Tom Wark contends that the American Viticultural Area system is much more “terroir-driven” than the French Appellation d’Origine Controlee.

And after ten years of blogging, Wark is thinking about calling it quits. Say it ain’t so, Tom!

Jeff Siegel, the “wine curmudgeon,” has been blogging for seven years.

“Don’t sweat the wine. Open one of everything. Any good wine will match something on the menu, and most likely will match the majority.” Dave McIntyre reflects on Thanksgiving.

In Vice, Jesse Dart profiles the Cistercian nuns of Monastero Suoro Cisterci, who are “making orange wine for God and the rest of us.”

“The third generation of Ponzis are still in school, but they, too have gotten into the game: Cugini, a non-alcoholic grape juice, has been their project.” In Wine-Searcher, Katherine Cole profiles the Ponzis.

Yesterday, Japan consumed about four times more Beaujolais Nouveau than we did.

Daily Wine News: City Guides

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-20-2014

ParisPunch has launched City Guides, a “full-fledged digital guidebook — complete with “best of” lists, maps and narrative — to finding the best cocktails, wine, craft beer or dive bars in lands exotic and familiar, from San Francisco to New York, Paris to Berlin, Tokyo to Melbourne and everywhere in between.” Bookmark it.

“People that don’t like use of the word natural itself have likely already lost the battle. In relation to wine, the category seems to have already chosen its name.” Lily-Elaine Hawk Wakawaka writes a fantastic essay defending natural wine.

In Wine Spectator, James Molesworth visits Hervé Souhaut, “a relative newcomer which has rapidly become a darling among the hipster set for its pepper- and violet-infused unoaked Syrahs.”

“These wines are at the epicentre of the fine wine trade, explaining why the very idea – whisper it – that premature oxidation might not be limited to white wine is so explosive.” In Decanter, Jane Anson wonders if the premox crisis has moved to red wine.

Steve Heimoff comments on Antonio Gallo’s acquisition of Steven Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar.

The total take at the 154th Hospices de Beaune charity wine auction hit a record over the weekend. Burgundy prices just keep rising.

In the Somm Journal, Ian Buxton visits southwest France to taste Armagnac.

“With wine… there is a question of markets, there is a question of why something is popular; we talk about organic and biodynamic; there are questions of morality — so many issues occurring at once, probably more than any other product.” Christie’s Per Holmberg chats with Pascaline Lepeltier.

“Because of the way barrels are used in winemaking and their shapes,” oak is really the only option for winemakers looking to age their wines in barrel. Tom Natan explains.

Richard Auffrey praises Talia Baiocchi’s new book as “an excellent and reader-friendly introduction to Sherry.”

Daily Wine News: Vinous & IWC

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-19-2014

Antonio Galloni

Antonio Galloni

Both Forbes and Wine-Searcher report on the news that Vinous has acquired Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar. (For the official press release, click here.) Alder Yarrow comments on the story.

In Wine Spectator, Matt Kramer contends that Burgundy isn’t “as expensive or challenging as you might think.”

In Forbes, Jenny Nguyen-Barron learns 10 “surprising things” from Union Square Hospitality Group’s wine director, John Ragan.

This year, Laurie Daniel is going with “a wine made from Rhone grapes” for her Thanksgiving meal.

On WineBerserkers, Phil Carpenter chats with six Santa Barbara winemakers worth watching.

Kevin Zraly’s Windows on the World Complete Wine Course was first released 30 years ago. Tom Wark thinks the book is as important as ever before.”

In Wine-Searcher, Elin McCoy pays tribute to New York’s pioneering sommeliers and salutes some of the young guns.

Steve Heimoff is “heartily in favor” of the proposed Petaluma Gap AVA.

Mike Veseth reviews Stuart Pigott’s Best White Wine on Earth: The Riesling Story.

In Wine Enthusiast, Alexis Korman names America’s best airport wine bars.

Daily Wine News: Moonrock

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-18-2014

Moonrock. From Wikipedia.

Moonrock. From Wikipedia.

“Tasting the vintages I am struck first and most by the site. I can taste the hillside we walked earlier.” Lily-Elaine Hawk Wakawaka spends a day with Maynard James Keenan.

Wine Spectator has released its annual Top 100 list. In the Los Angeles Times, S. Irene Virbila comments on this year’s selections.

The Guild of Master Sommeliers releases a video guide to Champagne.

In Decanter, Andrew Jefford is blown away by a sparkling wine from 1992 Graham Beck.

In Grape Collective, Mary Orlin reports on Robert Mondavi, Jr., latest project: “A line of wine country-inspired flooring and home accents.”

Elsewhere in Grape Collective, Dorothy Gaiter visits Vaio dei Masi in Valpolicella.

Spear’s, a magazine based in Britain, has released a list of “Best Wine Advisers.” Wink Lorch has the details in Wine-Searcher.

In the Sacramento Bee, Chris Macia reassess Merlot 10 years after “Sideways.”

W. Blake Gray lists “The 8 Wrong Ways To Drink, Serve And Enjoy Wine.”

Bill St. John offers some suggestions for Thanksgiving.

Newark airport has signed on an “Insane List of A-List Chefs to Open Restaurants in Terminal C.”

Daily Wine News: Exquisite Mystery

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-17-2014

Clos_de_Tart“Why the wines are so exquisite is a mystery that’s vexed viticulturists and geologists for centuries.” Will Lyons visits Clos de Tart.

“The name may be delightfully easy to spell and pronounce, but it is its distinctively sultry wines that are so memorable.” Jancis Robinson praises the wines of Etna.

“As Niagara Peninsula vintners are quick to point out, their region is on a lower latitude than is Burgundy and other cool-climate regions in Europe.” In the Wall Street Journal, Lettie Teague visits Canada.

Steve Heimoff concludes that “America is more of a wine-drinking country than it has ever been, and real wine-drinking countries don’t need critics to tell them what to drink.”

In the Napa Valley Register, Dan Berger profiles Tom Eddy, “an insider’s hero” in California wine.

“In case you’ve forgotten just how archaic and screwed up the laws concerning alcohol are in this lovely country,” Alder Yarrow can point you to a few recent stories.

In Wine Searcher, James Lawrence chats with Stéphanie de Boüard of Château Angélus.

In the New Yorker, Sarah Larson visits Aldo Sohm Wine Bar.

In the Village Voice, Lauren Mowery chats with Macari Vineyards on Long Island about this year’s harvest.

Daily Wine News: Drug Syndicate

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-14-2014

Flickr, Clearly Ambiguous.

Flickr, Clearly Ambiguous.

“One of the three brothers who transformed Yellow Tail wines into one of the great Australian export success stories has been charged over his alleged involvement in a major drug syndicate.” Nick Ralston reports on the Sydney Morning Herald.

Wine law attorney John Trinidad comments on the news that California’s Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control reprimanded Revolution Wines for tweeting about a wine event.

“While Bordeaux scratches its head over how to rekindle interest in its wines, one young winemaker is taking an almost sacrilegious approach – by making Chardonnay.” Wine-Searcher has the details.

In Wine-Searcher, Adam Lechmere chats with Australian vintner Tom Barry.

“While appellations are inherently imperfect — terroir is made by nature, appellations drawn by man — would it really be better to draw no lines at all?” Mitch Frank defends the decision by vintners in Paso Robles to pursue 11 new American Viticultural Areas within their existing appellation.

In Palate Press, Simon Woolf explains why “wine is more than just a product.”

In Reign of Terroir, Ken Payton visits “Hans-Peter Schmidt, the first winegrower in Europe, if not the world, to have begun experimentation with biochar in his Domaine Mythopia vineyards located in the Valais region of Switzerland.”

Steve Heimoff thinks about minerality.

“As there’s no shower attachment for the bath, and so no opportunity to rinse myself off, I have no option but to dry myself on — and thus ruin — my week-old set of expensive fluffy towels.” Daily Mail reporter Kate Battersby bathes in red wine.

Daily Wine News: Look to Champagne

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 11-13-2014

IMG_20141112_181156“As with the Champenois, the Burgundians have shown that embracing change doesn’t require casting aside one’s identity or traditions — that a spirit of progress and a willingness to innovate can be the best means of preserving a way of life.” In Wine-Searcher, Mike Steinberger explains why “the rest of France should take note” of Burgundy and Champagne.

Jonathan Lipsmeyer discovers a game that’s “crack for French oenophiles.” Play it. Trust me.

According to Don Kavanagh, “next year’s Bordeaux en primeur campaign could be the last, if châteaux refuse to accept market realities and drop prices.”

Steen Öhman reports on a visit to Domaine Leflaive.

“While it might be tempting for them to make stars of their own wines, Rahn, Armstrong and Cowin all tell me they’d be too self-conscious to do so.” In the Oregonian, Katherine Cole writes about the advent of the sommelier-winemaker.

“It’s inside the foudres and bottles that counts though—as pure an expression of sanguine and iron-driven Syrah as you’ll find.” James Molesworth goes “Back to an Old-School Cornas Cellar.”

Elsewhere in Wine Spectator, Harvey Steiman catches up with Jacques Pépin.

With #TempranilloDay upon us, Tom Natan thinks it’s time for “a special designation for wine holidays dreamed up by marketers that have no historical basis.”

“There’s something about challenging, tough harvests. It makes you dig deep inside and ask what is important.” Alfonso Cevola reflects on “the toughest harvest in years.”

In Serious Eats, Stacey Gibson offers some Thanksgiving wine advice.

Alder Yarrow attends a Champagne tasting put on by the Institute for the Masters of Wine.

Want to drink better coffee? Treat it like wine.