Daily Wine News: Changing Careers

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 10-05-2018

(Source: Wikimedia)

(Source: Wikimedia)

In the New York Times, Eric Asimov profiles sommelier Patrick Cappiello, who left the stresses and demands of restaurant work for another career in wine. “A story like Mr. Cappiello’s typifies the career trajectory of the modern sommelier, who, after a decade or so of the intense, adrenaline-fueled restaurant life, capitalizes on reputation and a network of connections to find a possibly less demanding, more fulfilling niche in the wine business.”

For New Jersey Monthly, I wrote about how the public view of New Jersey wines is changing, and highlight three wine trails worth hitting.

In Wine-Searcher, Vicki Denig makes the case for using native yeasts in winemaking. “Many universally agreed upon characteristics work together to create the concept of terroir; soil type, climate, and topographical features are just a few. Spontaneous fermentation through native yeasts, however, is one of the less-talked about factors, though remains essential in accurately conveying a depiction of place.”

In Vinous, David Schildknecht offers his impressions of the 2016 Austrian vintage for riesling and grüner veltliner.

SevenFifty Daily announces their list of 2018 drinks innovators the span the categories of wine, beer and spirits.

On 3 Quarks Daily, Dwight Furrow explores the justification for attributing personality characteristics and emotional states to wine.

Elin McCoy recommends nine pinot grigios worth drinking in Bloomberg.

Daily Wine News: The Role of Ratings

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 10-04-2018

ratingsThe Harvard Business Review delves into the role of ratings—everything from wine to Amazon product review—and wonder whether people have a bias toward giving higher rations over time. “When Robert Parker introduced his 100-point rating system for wine decades ago, the highest score he gave that year was 91 points. Now many wines each year receive perfect scores from his publication, the Wine Advocate. Similarly, in 2000 just 15% of wines rated by Wine Spectator received a score above 90. By 2015 the frequency of those scores had more than doubled: Nearly a third of all wines reviewed now receive a score above 90.”

In the Oregonian, Michael Alberty reports that California-based Copper Cane has cancelled contracts with vineyard owners in Oregon’s Rogue Valley, citing “smoke taint” from wildfires as the reason the grapes are unusable.

In Decanter, Andrew Jefford meets two pioneers of international varieties in northern Catalonia.

Tim McKirdy breaks down the pros and cons of the three-tier system in VinePair.

In Wine Enthusiast, Mike DeSimone and Jeff Jenssen catch up with Sting about the biodynamic wines he and his wife Trudie Styler make at their Tuscany estate, Il Palagio.

Is imitation wine better than a fake? Christy Canterbury ponders the answer on Tim Atkin’s site.

At Domaine de Fondrèche, located at the foot of Mont Ventoux, Sébastien Vincenti is leading a charge of terroir-driven winemakers. Robert Camuto drops in to check it out in Wine Spectator.

Wine is coming to Disneyland, reports Liza B. Zimmerman in Wine-Searcher.


Anne Krebiehl reviews Steven Spurrier’s book, Wine—A Way of Life in the World of Fine Wine.

Daily Wine News: DTC Shipping Ruling

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 10-03-2018

(Source: Wikimedia)

(Source: Wikimedia)

“A federal judge in Michigan has ruled that the state’s prohibition on direct-to-consumer wine shipping from out-of-state retailers is unconstitutional,” reports Ben O’Donnell in Wine Spectator. “If the ruling stands, Michigan residents will be able to purchase wine from stores anywhere in the country and have it shipped to their homes.”

“Two major Bordeaux wineries have been placed under formal investigation for collusion, with French authorities suspecting they have had the Saint-Émilion Grand Cru classification manipulated to their benefit,” according to Wine-Searcher. “Hubert de Boüard, 62, co-owner of Château Angélus and consultant enologist, was placed under investigation on September 18 for collusion. Philippe Castéja, 69, owner of Château Trotte Vieille and major négociant, was placed under investigation the following day.”

In the New York Times, Ted Loos takes a look at wine auctions and reports on the trends.

In Fortune, Rachel King examines the gender gap in the Champagne and sparkling wine business.

Assyrtiko grape prices on Santorini have spiked this year, leading to concerns among some producers that the Greek island could lose out in the market. Panos Kakaviatos reports on the issue in Decanter.

Wine Enthusiast offers value buys for every wine lover with their list of “Top 100 Best Buys of 2018.”

In Wine & Spirits Magazine, Rachel DelRocco Terrazas discovers the joys of Chilean sauvignon blanc.

Mike Veseth, the wine economist, reviews two wine books: Rosé: Understanding the Pink Wine Revolution and Rebecca Gibb’s The Wines of New Zealand.

Daily Wine News: The Highest Vineyard

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 10-02-2018

gavel-2456-00c1bad8d8a7cb7de3076abac3205a8e@1xVines in Tibet sitting at an altitude of 3,563.31 meters above sea level have been recognized by Guinness World Records as constituting the highest vineyard in the world. Sylvia Wu shares the details in Decanter.

“Last week the US Supreme Court agreed to hear the case of Tennessee Wine & Spirits v. Byrd Clayton,” reports W. Blake Gray in Wine-Searcher. “A win could mean that, by 2020, most people of the US will be able to order wine from stores anywhere in the country. Currently this is only possible in 14 states.”

“The Canadian government agreed in the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade accord to roll back a series of retail wine restrictions, acquiescing to American demands that were being heard at the World Trade Organization,” reports Bloomberg.

In Wine & Spirits Magazine, Joshua Greene explores gewürztraminer. “Other than sometimes enjoying its quirky charms with Cantonese dishes, or with choucroute in Alsace, I tend to steer clear of the grape. Or did, until recently, and now I can’t get it out of my head.”

On the blog for First Vine, Tom Natan wonders if print or online wine reviews make a bigger difference for wine sales.

Wine Enthusiast highlights six wine cities on the rise, including Johannesburg and São Paulo.

In Fortune, Rachel King explores how wineries and distilleries are addressing climate change.

In Beverage Media, Pam Strayer looks at how millennials’ interest in organically grown wines is impacting sales.

Daily Wine News: Growth of Biodynamics

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 10-01-2018

Cow horns used during the biodynamic process. (Flickr: stefano lubiana wines)

Cow horns used during the biodynamic process. (Flickr: stefano lubiana wines)

Jancis Robinson explores the increasing number of wine growers who are adopting biodynamic culture. “However much scientists may snort, it is easy to see the warm, fuzzy, if somewhat irrational appeal of biodynamics.”

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Esther Mobley reports on Alecia Moore’s, aka Pink’s, passion project. “Five years ago, Moore and her husband, the former motocross racer Carey Hart, bought a 25-acre vineyard on a 250-acre property in Santa Barbara County’s Santa Ynez Valley… They moved to the property, built a winery, and Moore took a five-year hiatus from releasing new music so that she could realize her longtime dream of making wine. It has been one of the happiest and scariest periods of Moore’s life.”

Oliver Styles delves into the messy business of additives in wine, and wonders why some additives are more acceptable than others, in Wine-Searcher.

Could the Supreme Court strike down bans on wine retailer direct shipping? Emma Balter investigates in Wine Spectator.

In Wine & Spirits Magazine, Tara Q. Thomas highlights Greek game changer examples of assyrtiko and retsina.

In the Seattle Times, Andy Perdue profiles 14 Hands winemaker, Keith Kenison.

Dave McIntyre on Walmart’s new line of wines in the Washington Post.

In Grape Collective, Dorothy Gaiter and John Brecher interview Sta. Rita Hills wine pioneer Richard Sanford.

Daily Wine News: Truth in Labeling

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-28-2018

(Flickr: Daniel Gasienica)

(Flickr: Daniel Gasienica)

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Esther Mobley delves into the dark side of wine labeling with a close look at the controversy surrounding California winemaker Joe Wagner’s Oregon wine labels.

In the New York Times, Eric Asimov offers notes on the most recent wine school, Morgon, and announces what’s up next: Saumur Champigny, “a French bistro favorite.”

In the Wall Street Journal, Lettie Teague on the perverse pleasure of a bad bottle of wine. “Because bad wine can be difficult to describe (as my friends who merely say “Blech” might agree), it’s useful to furnish descriptors others can recognize. Who hasn’t tasted aspirin or Alka-Seltzer?”

“On a sleepy 5.5-acre vineyard in Quebec province, in two steel tanks named “Fuck” and “Trump,” a wine revolution is quietly fermenting. This is the domain of Pinard et Filles.” In GQ, Samuel Hine explores the natural wine producer.

Stephen Tanzer offers his thoughts on 2016 white Burgundy in Vinous. “Vintage generalizations about the 2016 whites are virtually worthless, as the wines range dramatically in aromatic character, ripeness, texture, concentration and balance… But it’s also a vintage well worth due diligence on the part of Burgundy lovers, as the better wines are precise, fresh and classic.”

In Grape Collective, Lisa Denning looks at how Spain’s Ribeiro wine region is making a comeback.

In Wine-Searcher, various growers give their feedback on the highs and lows of the vintage throughout Italy.

Daily Wine News: California’s Growing Appeal

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-27-2018

Vineyards in Napa Valley. (Source: Wikimedia)

Vineyards in Napa Valley. (Source: Wikimedia)

In the Robb Report, Sara L. Schneider looks at how Napa is attracting French winemakers. “It’s a commitment to concentrate on land lesser known than the great domaines and châteaux of Burgundy or Bordeaux; to raise families an ocean and a continent apart from grandparents; and to risk entire careers on early promise and a hunch.”

In Wine Spectator, Lynn Alley reports on the growing conflict between cotton and wine grapes in Texas. “Many Texas High Plains growers say they’ve been hit by “pesticide drift”—strong chemicals are being sprayed on neighbors’ cotton fields, then carried by wind into their vineyards. The resulting damage can be devastating.”

While Rioja’s move to recognize single vineyard wines is a positive step forward for the region, the requirements aren’t strict enough according José Ramón Urtasun, co-owner of Remirez de Ganuza. The Drinks Business has the details.

Rémy Charest delves into the science behind decanting wine in SevenFifty Daily.

In Wine Enthusiast, Sean P. Sullivan praises Washington’s 2015 vintage.

In VinePair, Sara Pepiton says Washington’s best under-the-radar wine destination is Woodinville, where Chateau Ste. Michelle Wine Estates is located.

Paul Mabray publishes: “The Wine Industry Doesn’t Have an Education Problem, We Have an Engagement Problem.”

Elsebeth Lohfert explores what’s new for Nordic wine in Meininger’s.

Daily Wine News: Virginia’s Evolution

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-26-2018

At Cooper Vineyards in Louisa, Virginia. (Flickr: USDAgov)

At Cooper Vineyards in Louisa, Virginia. (Flickr: USDAgov)

Courtney Schiessl explores the grapes and styles that could come to exemplify Virginia’s wines in SevenFifty Daily. “Now that Virginia is accepted among sommeliers and buyers as a quality winegrowing state, questions inevitably arise about the wines that will broadly define the state in consumers’ eyes.”

Lenn Thompson finds “diversity and deliciousness” in Idaho wine country.

In Punch, Zachary Sussman explores Vienna’s wine culture. “At a time when we romanticize the idea of “local wine,” it’s increasingly difficult to find the genuine article. In Vienna, however, the custom of the heuriger provides the rare example of “local wine” in the literal sense—grown, produced and consumed within a single capital.”

Should China adopt a Western lexicon of wine, or one forged by its own people? Jeni Port considers the issue of translation in Meininger’s.

In Wine Spectator, Robert Camuto writes about his visit to Château Pesquié, which is leading a new wave on France’s Mont Ventoux.

Josh Raynolds offers his thoughts on the 2016 and 2015 vintages from Paso Robles in Vinous.

Grape Collective talks with Hank Beckmeyer of La Clarine Farm about his journey into natural wine, and how John Cage and Frank Zappa became influences on his winemaking.

In Decanter, Andrew Jefford analyzes the reasons why Britain is trying to back-track on its place-name agreements.

Daily Wine News: Origin Stories

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-25-2018

Glass_of_champagneIn SevenFifty Daily, David White traces the origin story of grower Champagne. “…if you dig deeper, a more complete picture comes into view—one that helps us understand the trajectory of the grower Champagne movement from its early days until its tipping point, when it entered the public consciousness.”

After a disappointing season last year, growers and producers in Champagne are bullish about the 2018 harvest. Caroline Henry reports in Wine-Searcher: “2018 was the complete opposite of 2017 in regard to weather patterns and the health of the grapes.”

In the Wall Street Journal, Lettie Teague explores whether cava can ever compete with Champagne.

In the New York Times, Shaun Pett discovers Bolivian wine. “Bolivia’s vineyards total only about 1.5 percent of the 550,000 acres in neighboring Argentina — the world’s sixth-largest wine producer — and Bolivia’s annual production of 8.3 million liters is a molecule among the world’s 25 billion liters.”

In Decanter, Jess Lander looks at how the third installment of the Somm film series compares to the first two. “‘Somm 3’ is less about stunning landscapes, vines, and cellars, and more about the people who have played a major role in shaping the $220 billion wine industry we know today.”

“Thanks to assistance from the central Chinese government and the Ningxia Agricultural Reclamation Management Bureau, the Ningxia wine region in northern China is expecting to double its vineyard area and quadruple wine production by 2022,” reports Mike DeSimone and Jeff Jenssen in Forbes.

In Wines & Vines, Joel Burt and actor Eric Wareheim discuss their partnership and successful launch of new brand, Las Jaras Wines.

Daily Wine News: Burgundy’s Unicorns

Posted by | Posted in Wine News | Posted on 09-24-2018

unicorn“If it’s unicorn wines you’re after – small supply, great reputation, massive demand, steepling prices – Burgundy is the unicorn stud farm,” says Don Kavanagh in Wine-Searcher. “No region breeds as many or such powerful examples.”

Jancis Robinson considers the vegan effects on winemaking practice.

In the Wall Street Journal, James R. Hagerty memorializes Kent Rosenblum, a “veterinarian from Minnesota” who “tried making wine at home and became a star.”

In Forbes, Thomas Pellechia explores the results of a new study that confirm that wine in a can is not a fad.

Dave McIntyre reflects on a decade of writing column columns for the Washington Post.

Elsewhere in the Washington Post, Ashley Abramson on why the “wine mom” trope is dangerous. “Although the trope identifies a very real problem — motherhood is stressful — it presents a solution that’s not only unsustainable and unhealthy, but dangerous…”

In Food & Wine, Ray Isle explores the history of Georgian wine.

Elsewhere in Food & Wine, Vicki Denig looks at the rise of urban wineries.

In the Hollywood Reporter, Lesley Balla goes inside the secret world of Hollywood wine clubs.