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  • Open That Bottle Night

    It’s Open That Bottle Night! For Us, Two Treasures (We Hope) From Napa Valley

    by Dorothy J. Gaiter on 2/23/2017

    Please enjoy your wines and your loved ones this OTBN and let us know what wines you selected and how your evening is going. We’ll be online, below, from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m. EST Saturday. read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news February 23, 2017

    by Christopher Barnes on 2/23/2017

    Science News on how stink bugs can spoil wine. "When accidentally harvested with the grapes and fermented during the wine-making process, the live insects can release their stink and ruin the wine."

    The Miami Herald on the challenges facing black wine professionals. "It’s listening to the late rapper extraordinaire Biggie Smalls in a puff of Carmenère (an old Bordeaux grape grown heavily in Chile with nuances that can beckon marijuana or cigar ash), for example."

    The Wine Enthusiast on wine in Morocco. "Despite the notion of Morocco as a hot country with a desert climate, most vineyards are in the foothills of the coastal Atlas Mountains. The relatively high altitudes and the cooling effect of the nearby ocean preserve acidity in grapes and help create balanced wines."

    Food and Wine on a interesting way to spend $100,000 on wine. "The experience takes three days, and also includes a chartered helicopter flight to the vineyard, a private tour of St. Hugo, wine tastings in an underground cellar, and luxury accommodations complete with fine dining experiences, for two people."

    The Chicago Tribune finds Pinot Noir in Alsace. "Pinot noir is sort of like the Cornell of Alsace wine styles. No offense to any Cornellians out there — the Ivy League is the Ivy League — but when you think of said League, a handful of other schools come to mind before the one in Ithaca, N.Y., if that one even comes to mind."

    Decanter on Corsican wine. "‘I’m not against the idea of appellations. I represented Corsica at the INAO and fought for the old Corsican varieties to be included in the AOC, but then I began to be worried by the lack of respect and consideration for them’." 

    The Drinks Business on the Roman Emperor Probus and his love of the vine. " He therefore set his men to work on various projects; building roads, bridges and fortifications along the Rhine and Danube, draining marshes, digging canals and, most notably, planting extensive vineyards. New plantations sprang up across northern Gaul, Moesia and Pannonia in the first widespread programme of vine planting to occur in the Roman Empire for over 180 years."

    read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news February 22, 2017

    by Christopher Barnes on 2/22/2017

    Vogue is excited about Friuli. "Lush landscapes, quaint villages, and snow-capped mountains provide the perfect background for a long weekend of eating and drinking, Friulian style. American tourists are few and far between, so—as with most off-the-beaten-path destinations—it's helpful to travel with an insider for an authentic experience."

    Decanter on how UC Davis is going to sell student wine for a lot of money. "As the university sources grapes from key Napa Valley vineyards in Oakville, many of the bottles are expected to sell for $80 to $100 each."

    People on how pet parents love cat wine. "Whether their feline drinks the adult beverage or not, owners seem to love the idea of their pet taking part in the human tradition of winding down with a glass of vino."

    Forbes on how traditional Bordeaux labels are getting a make-over. "U.S. winemakers, he explained, often use labels to differentiate products and to help tell a story. In contrast, traditional Bordeaux winemakers often believe that the reputation of the wine itself will sell bottles."

    W. Blake Gray tastes the world's rarest wine grape. The grape is called Roussin de Morgex. It's not actually related to the nearly extinct grape Roussin, which is cultivated in just one vineyard in Valle d'Aosta."

    read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news February 21, 2017

    by Christopher Barnes on 2/21/2017

    In Palate Press W. Blake gray like the cheap wine in Valpolicella . "The best local grape in this region near Verona – home of the fictional Romeo and Juliet – is Corvina, which produces a light-bodied, fresh-tasting red."

    Thrillest is excited about red wine brownies. "Sarah Fennel, the food writer and photographer behind the recipe, writes that she dreamt it up because, "I constantly struggle with the decision of drinks or dessert." 

    The Drinks Business talks Arizona wine with Maynard James Keenan. “We live right on the edge,” said Keenan. “Some of the best wines in the world don’t come easy. We have years where it’s almost a tragedy. In Arizona we have late spring frosts and are fighting cold and humidity more than heat. Some years we don’t make it.”

    In Decanter a man builds a house out of Champagne bottles. "The house in Russia is made from 12,000 Champagne bottles."

    Winefolly on the buttery taste in Chardonnay. "The process of Malolactic Fermentation is a winemaking process that gives both red and white wines a richer and creamier texture. Oddly enough, Malolactic Fermentation isn’t technically a fermentation at all."

    read more »

  • Wine news

    wine news February 20, 2017

    by Christopher Barnes on 2/20/2017

    Jancis Robinson on the challenges and opportunities in the Loire. "Charles, with a grizzled grey beard and intimate knowledge of every tributary of the Loire and the vineyards thereon, will doubtless snort on reading this, and mutter grimly, 'if only she'd written about the Loire one tenth as much as she's written about Burgundy'."

    The Washington Post on how a Trump wine boycott has backfired. “The Gates-based grocer said that nine of its Virginia stores had sold out of the Trump-branded wine despite efforts to boycott the product and Wegmans for selling it,” the Democrat & Chronicle reported Friday."

    The Smithsonian asks can ancient techniques make modern wine better? "The husband-wife duo are committed to Armenia’s karases, terracotta pots used in winemaking in Armenia for millennia, and they’ve taken painstaking lengths to acquire hundreds of these vessels for their winery, often by demolishing walls of villagers’ basements to retrieve them as they are often too large to fit through the door."

    The Democrat and Chronicle on New York made hemp infused wine. "The duo sources their wine from Glenora Wine Cellars in Dundee, Yates County, and the hemp extract from Bluebird Botanicals in Colorado, one day hoping to use local hemp made in the Southern Tier."

    The Guardian asks how do you spot a hipster wine? "The hipster wine scene has the original terroir-obsessed French small producer zones of Burgundy and the Northern Rhône, the stubbornly traditional eccentricities of the Jura, the orange wine visionaries of north-eastern Italy and the volcanic wines of Sicily among its guiding inspirations."

    Andrew Jefford in Decanter on enigma variations and France's Gaillac region. "e Benedictine monks of the Abbaye St Michel in Gaillac created a set of appellation-like rules for its production, which they wouldn’t have done had there been no reputation to protect (it included the singular one that the vines could only be manured with pigeon droppings, known as colombine, which is why the area is still full of majestic stone dovecotes)."

    Eric Asimov in the New York Times on Sonoma County Pinot Noir. "Despite the frustrating vagaries of the appellation, which make choosing wines difficult for consumers, the true Sonoma Coast shows great promise for pinot noir."

    read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news February 17, 2017

    by Christopher Barnes on 2/17/2017

    The Huffington Post on how Trump winery is looking to hire foreign workers. "Thursday’s posting says potential workers will earn $11.27 hourly working at the 1,300-acre estate from April 3 to as late as Oct. 27. The workers are being sought using the federal H-2A visa program, which permits U.S. employers to hire foreign agricultural laborers for temporary work as long as no qualified Americans want the jobs instead."

    WTVR.com on how Trump wine sales have doubled in Virginia.

    Bloomberg on how fine wine pricing is soaring. "Prices for fine wines have climbed to their highest levels since October 2011 on speculation that equities near record highs are poised to drop. Wines and the funds that buy them are being viewed much like gold -- as a store of value in uncertain times -- after the U.K. voted to leave the European Union and the U.S. elected Donald Trump as president."

    Forbes on how fake wine is a billion dollar market and ways to spot fraud. "The total value of fake wine according to Maureen Downey, one of the foremost experts on fake wine who was leading the wine authentication classes, is around $3 billion."

    The Telegraph on the countries that drink the most wine per capita. "So which country takes the crown? The proud title of most fervent vino guzzler goes to Andorra."

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  • Wine news

    Wine news February 16, 2017

    by Christopher Barnes on 2/16/2017

    Bloomberg picks its top Burgundies under $100. "Sadly, there’s one big problem for all us Burgundy aficionados: constantly rising prices."

    USA Today on visits Calistoga in Napa Valley. "In 1976, two California bottles triumphed during a blind tasting against French entries, to the disdain of a panel of French tasters. Known as the Judgment of Paris, the competition resulted in Calistoga’s Chateau Montelena Winery being awarded the winning Chardonnay."

    Men's Fitness on making wine taste better by putting it in a blender. "Of course, if you’re patient, a more practical alternative to using a blender is to empty the bottle into any container—decanter, pitcher, bucket—that will maximize air contact with the surface, splash it around, then let it sit for half an hour."

    Decanter looks at Bordeaux 2017 ten years later. "Before 2013, it was the 2007s that were seen as the whipping boy of the past decade, for the red wines at least."

    The Wine Economist on the challenges for the South African wine industry.  "I think wine tourism is a key to South Africa’s future because the wine tourism opportunities are fantastic and visitors are often your best brand ambassadors."

    read more »

  • Feature

    The Iconic Domaine Tempier From Founders Lulu and Lucien Peyraud To Daniel Ravier Today

    by Lisa Denning on 2/15/2017

    Looking back while moving forward at Domaine Tempier in Bandol. read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news February 15, 2017

    by Christopher Barnes on 2/15/2017

    The Los Angeles Times on how wine exports are reaching record levels led by California. "The $1.62 billion in foreign trade revenue for 2016 bested the previous year’s record of $1.49 billion by a slim margin through steadily strong sales in the top market, the European Union, and sharp growth increases in China and Britain."

    The Daily Progress on a boycott of supermarket chain Wegmans over their stocking of Trump wine. "The regional supermarket chain with a cult following is facing calls to remove Trump Winery products from its 10 Virginia stores. Over the weekend, about 300 members of the Prince William County chapter of the National Organization for Women made plans to pressure Wegmans to stop carrying products from the Albemarle County winery."

    US News And World Report on wine and sensory ability. "As if differences in sensory abilities weren't enough, aromas are inherently challenging to describe. Unlike shapes, colors or letters, humans don't seem to have a natural mental framework for smells, so they're hard to remember and harder to describe to others."

    The Willamette Week on how Bow and Arrow's Scott Frank came to wine after hitting rock bottom. "After being jobless and "bottoming out," he says, he bluffed his way into a job at the wine department of New Seasons Market, then worked harvest at the influential Cameron estate winery in Dundee."

    The Drinks Business talks to actor Sam Neil about how terrifying it is to make wine in Central Otago, NZ.  “Living on the edge of viability is one of the most extremely satisfying things of all, but also fucking terrifying,” Neill so eloquently stated during the recent Pinot Noir NZ 2017 conference in Wellington."

    read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news February 14, 2017

    by Christopher Barnes on 2/13/2017

    Eric Asimov in the New York Times asks should restaurants offer guests that first taste of wine. “The overlying factor is, what is the best service I can give my guests?” she said in a telephone interview. “I wondered, how are guests expected to know these things? I don’t want to put my guests in the position of having to guess whether a wine is corked.”

    In Decanter Andrew Jefford on the other Châteauneuf. "Gadagne was included in the Côtes du Rhône zone back in 1937, and in the general Villages appellation in 1997.  Its history, vineyards and the potential quality of its wine, though, merited more than that: named village and perhaps, one day, cru status.  Why not climb the ladder?"

    Metro on why red wine is the best alcohol for great sex. "Without getting too bogged down in science, according to the research, red wine actually has compounds that stimulate our erogenous zones."

    Vogue on the best wines at every price point. “I love exploring the wines of the world,” Mondavi exclaimed, “It’s hard to nail it down to only a few!”

    Palate Press on the evolution of Lebanese wine. "The Lebanese – long time consumers of whisky, arak and French wine – are “slowly waking up to pride in Lebanese wine,” says Ixsir’s Hady Kahale."

    read more »


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