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  • Wine news

    The Guardian on the pluses and minuses of wine clubs. "There are downsides, however. It’s easy for retailers to pop slow-moving wines or those that have reached their drink-by date into a mixed case, for example, and you obviously can’t taste before you buy, as you can in a shop, so you may end up with bottles that aren’t particularly to your taste."

    Jon Bonné in Punch looks at some problems within the wine community. "It is an industry that, because it’s viewed by outsiders as a nice little escapist haven from the real world, has a nearly pathological aversion to its less-than-perfect side."

    Eric Asimov in the New York Times writes the obituary for Rhone winemaker Auguste Clape. Mr. Clape (pronounced klahp) was one of a pantheon of midcentury winegrowers in the northern Rhône whose wines, though made initially for the local market, were eventually celebrated internationally as among the most profound expressions of the syrah grape.

    Decanter reports Napa Valley's Duckhorn has agreed a deal to buy celebrated California Pinot Noir producer Kosta Browne for an undisclosed fee.

    Seven Fifty Daily profiles natural wine importer and wholesaler Jenny and Francois. "In the 18 years since it was created, the company has grown dramatically. Jenny & François now sells 279 wines from 71 producers in 10 countries to 42 states."

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  • Column

    "Winemakers and their barrels. Get them started on the subject and it’s hard to get them to stop. For good reason. In influencing the taste and style of wine, the choice of oak barrels is like painters having additional colors." Dorothy J. Gaiter and John Brecher

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  • Wine news

    Eric Asimov in the New York Times notes that every few years an article bubbles up with claims that expensive wines are really no better than cheap ones. "J.K. Rowling has sold a lot more books than Saul Bellow, and given the choice, most people would probably prefer to read Ms. Rowling. But does that lead to the conclusion that Nobel-winning authors like Mr. Bellow are for suckers?"

    Bon Appetit explores carbonic maceration. "But with carbonic maceration, a winemaker skips stemming and crushing and instead puts full bunches of grapes into steel fermentation tanks that are sealed and filled with carbon dioxide, creating an anaerobic atmosphere without any oxygen."

    Andrew Chalk writing on Go-Wine visits Côtes de Bordeaux. "The Côtes de Bordeaux is a group of five Bordeaux AOPs who have joined together to jointly market themselves to the world. They are Blaye, Cadillac, Castillon, Francs, and Sainte-Foy."

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  • Wine news

    Jancis Robinson writes, "The New Zealand Cellar wine bar and wine shop is no cellar. It is very much above ground, in Pop Brixton, a colourful site almost under the local railway line."

    The Washington Post reports on cheap Spanish rosé is being passed off as French. "France’s consumer fraud authority confirmed July 9 that over the past two years, unscrupulous wine merchants have passed off as many as 70,000 hectoliters — the equivalent of 10 million bottles — of cheap Spanish wine as more-expensive French rosé."

    The Guardian on why concrete vessels are back in vogue. "By the 1980s, concrete was itself starting to look dated. Stainless steel vats, with whizzy temperature controls, available in all manner of sizes, were the kit to have, making a style of lively, fruit-driven wine that proved hugely popular."

    Decanter Andrew Jefford meets the Burgundy and Châteauneuf specialist Mounir Saouma. “When I arrived in Burgundy, I tried to guess how people made wine in the past. I have no knowledge; I have no pretension. I’m patient. I like to observe.” In particular, he noted the super-cleanness of modern juices, pneumatically pressed followed by settling and racking; he noticed the great attention paid to reductive handling … and he noticed the premox problems the region had with white wines."

    Inc evaluates Walmart's $11 wine. "This Red Blend had a remarkable depth of texture. It was like meeting a crass Wall Street banker and hearing him talk intelligently about global warming. Or at least the collected works of Britney Spears."

    The Drinks Business reports that Head of the world’s largest cork producer, Antonio Amorim, says that his company will have achieved the total eradication of TCA across the billions of corks it produces by 2020.


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  • Winemaker Interviews

    "I think you need to be able to see what you're doing in winemaking way ahead of when it actually happens." Kris Matthewson

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  • Winemaker interviews

    "What I love about Maryland is its diverse geology and microclimates. It's often referred to as America in miniature." Drew Baker on making wine in Maryland

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  • Winemaker Interviews

    ValCerasa was one of the first wines to be imported from Mount Etna to the United States and for good reason.

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  • Wine news

    Handmaid's Tale wine is cancelled due to social media criticism reports The Hollywood Reporter. "Earlier on Tuesday, People revealed that MGM and wine seller Lot18 was releasing a collection of wines inspired by the Hulu show — two reds in tribute to Elisabeth Moss and Alexis Bledel‘s characters, Offred and Ofglen, and a white wine for Yvonne Strahovski‘s Serena Joy."

    Bon Appetit on making wine with Yoda or Danilo Marcucci. "Marcucci refers to himself as “a simple Umbrian man,” but in the world of natural wine, he is a master. He has 13 vintages under his belt. He’s a consultant for nearly a dozen wineries scattered across the country—from outside Rome to Trento in the Alps."

    CNBC on how a mother and son sold $1 million in wine condoms. "A joke about an unfinished bottle of wine, some plastic wrap and a rubber band led to over $1 million in sales for the Texas mother-son duo behind Wine Condoms."

    The Drinks Business reports that British wine writer Steven Spurrier is to release England’s first crémant in November, using wines from his estate in Dorset."Speaking to the drinks business last week, Spurrier said that the decision to make a less fizzy English sparkling from his property in the southwest of England, called Bride Valley, was in fact driven by adversity."

    Punch on one of America's top 10 wine lists. "Perlman’s minor superpower is that he’s managed to created a wine program that’s wonderfully eclectic without suffering from mission creep. Rarely do you encounter a wine list that feels so in sync with its restaurant—and that’s saying something, given Vincent’s menu, which is perhaps best summed up as “wanderlust-y.”

    Seven Fifty Daily on the emergence of non-vinifera wines. "Hybrid grapes don’t get much love."



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  • Wine news

    The Washington Post says our taste in wine at restaurants is changing. “In that environment the chef is making the decisions on what he or she will offer, and you choose from a small menu, not the wide range of selections that might be on a traditional menu,” Greene says. “That has opened up the field for sommeliers. It’s not that somms know better, but they can fashion a great wine experience with all these resources available.”

    The New York Times on a wine stopper that does double duty. "There are wine stoppers galore out there, and no lack of cutters to make short work of the foil that covers a wine bottle’s cork. "

    In Decanter Andrew Jefford reviews professor Alex Maltman’s recently published book, Vineyards, Rocks, & Soils. "No student of wine should be without this book; every wine writer and sommelier should read it, several times."

    Jancis Robinson asks how green is Napa Valley? "Williams puts it in typically forceful fashion. 'All of Napa Valley's great wines – the Inglenooks of the 1940s and all the wines that did so well in the famous 1976 Judgment of Paris tasting – were made from dry-farmed vines. Irrigation was only introduced to the valley in 1976 but today 95 per cent of our vineyards are irrigated. It's horse shit to say it's impossible to dry farm in Napa Valley."


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  • Winemaker Interviews

    "When people think of Mas d’en Gil, they look at us as a reference, a specific style that people are looking for, and we would like to keep the flame. But in the meantime, we are not afraid to make changes." -Antón Lorenzo

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