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  • Feature

    The Political Troubles and the Incredible Potential of Turkish Wine

    by Christopher Barnes on 8/28/2015

    A hostile government has harmed the Turkish wine industry but the potential of their grapes is starting to be recognised internationally. read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news August 28, 2015

    by Christopher Barnes on 8/28/2015

    The Napa Valley Register on Richard Peterson's memoir The Winemaker. "Peterson’s hilarious anecdotes include the story of Tchelistcheff’s rueful admission that Madame de Pins required him to make her vinegar but only from the grapes of the prized Georges de la Tour private reserve cabernet sauvignon from Beaulieu vineyard #1."

    The Los Angeles Times on wine accessories. "Who doesn’t need a tie-dyed leather wine tote or a Dalmatian-spotted pouch ($28) for a gold dip-dyed waiter's corkscrew ($18)?"

    The Wine Enthusiast talks to Béatrice Cointreau, the granddaughter of the Rémy Martin founder, who is making wine in Malibu. "It’s very powerful and flavorful, and I thought it was very interesting. My aim has been to maintain these white, flowery fragrances that you get from the Viognier, so to make sure that it wasn’t overpowered by the sun and the soil. That’s why I added four percent of the Chardonnay, which is naturally more acidic."

    Le Pan profiles Napa Zinfandel. "Napa is not well known for Zinfandel because there isn’t much – just 3 percent of the Zinfandel in California is in Napa. There is 13 times as much Cabernet and four times as much Merlot in Napa as Zin." 

    The Drinks Business on the top 10 artist designed wine labels. "Château Mouton Rothschild was an early pioneer of art labels, commissioning artists including Salvador Dali and Andy Warhol every year since 1945 to design its labels, while contemporary artists such as Tracey Emin and Yoko Ono have also lent their talent to the world of wine."

    Jamie Goode asks "single critic opinons or panel tastings. What is the best?"

    In the New York Times, Eric Asimov features a Vermont winery that is using hybrid grapes. "Though it’s not exactly her intention, Ms. Heekin and her La Garagista wines demonstrate that wines made of hybrid grapes can not only be deliciously satisfying but can also show a sense of place."


    read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news August 27, 2015

    by Christopher Barnes on 8/27/2015

    The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Gallo will buy Talbott Vineyards.

    Entrepreneur asks how much do you tip for a bottle of wine? "Often, the good sommeliers and wine directors are salaried and a part of management. Therefore, they are not in the waiter tip pool, notes Roberta Morrell, president and CEO of the Morrell Wine Group and the Morrell Wine Bar in New York City."

    The Wine Enthusiast's 40 under 40 list.

    Decanter on a new book about China and wine that will worry Bordeaux.

    Wines and Vines discuss yeast issues.

    Forbes talks to an Amazon wine executive. "The beauty of Amazon Wine is we’ve in essence leveled the playing field for wineries to attract customers and create their own success."


    read more »

  • Wine regions

    The Evolution Of The Sta. Rita Hills AVA

    by Nickolaus Hines on 8/26/2015

    The Sta. Rita Hills on the central coast of California is a tucked away corner of the world perfect for growing Pinot Noir. read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news August 26, 2015

    by Christopher Barnes on 8/26/2015

    Gawker reports that Amazon is to provide a one hour alcohol delivery service. "Luckily, the service—called “Prime Now”—is currently only available to Seattle-area Prime members, but Amazon says it’s open to enabling impulsive drunks in other cities."

    CNN on police seizing a man's wine collection valued at between $150,000 and $200,000. "People who move into the state must have their alcohol or wine collection movement approved by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board in advance, according to the Board's website."

    NPR on rosé sales picking up steam.

    Yahoo Travel on why Bordeaux is great.

    Decanter asks does Chianti have an image problem? "‘Chianti has lost some of the vibrancy that made it a great wine in the 1980s,’ said Sergio de Luca, buyer for Italy at wine distributor Enotria. ‘The off-trade range is always very small and often connected with bottlers at entry-level."

    The Drinks Business reports that Aurelio Montes hired a winemaker from the Mosel to help Chile develop quality Riesling. "“He thinks the Riesling is different from the Mosel, but he also thinks there is a chance to create something unique, and I think we will go dry in style,” said Aurelio, before stressing that this is the only consultant Montes has taken on, because, “I thought it was important to have someone with expertise.”

    Wines and Vines on the secrets of cork testing. "In the late 1990s, an estimated 2% to 10% of wine bottles were believed to be spoiled by varying degrees of the taint, most often caused by 2,4,6-trichloroanisole (TCA)."

    The Wine Economist on how China's crisis effects the US wine industry. " If the Federal Reserve now goes forward with its widely anticipated plan to raise interest rates in September, for example, the result is likely to be a big spike in the value of the U.S. dollar on foreign exchange markets, putting U.S. wine producers at a further competitive disadvantage."

    On JancisRobinson.com a Mancunian's view of Napa."The character of different vineyards is constantly being discovered; Pinot Noir from Sonoma and Mendocino is emerging as some of the most thrilling wine in the States; Paso Robles makes white Rhône blends better than the Rhône does itself; and Zinfandel is finding a new lease of life."

    read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news August 25, 2015

    by Christopher Barnes on 8/25/2015

    CNN on 10 up and coming wine regions. "Akin to Sonoma Valley's landscape 20 years ago, Michigan wine country is bucolic and largely undeveloped, comprising just 100 or so small- to medium-sized wineries and just less than 3,000 acres of wine-producing vineyards."

    John Szabo goes digging for minerality. "There’s ample anecdotal and empirical evidence that soils affects the smell, taste and texture of wine. Scientists, however, still struggle to pinpoint exactly why and how these differences arise – the direct and indirect effects of soil chemistry on wine are challenging to identify and even harder to quantify with scientific certainty."

    In Winesearcher Empire Wine and Spirits fights against obsolete regulations. "By the end of the 2015 legislative session, both houses of the New York State Legislature passed a bill which clarifies that the Authority’s jurisdiction is limited to wine sold for consumption within New York."

    Harpers.co.uk on the Ploughman Project an effort to help farmers in Chile following the 2010 earthquake. 

    Vice says that Australia's largest wine producing region is struggling. " Over time, the area has built the kind of social pressure associated with drought-stricken Queensland. As a local ominously inferred, "people keep it pretty quiet when someone commits suicide."


    read more »

  • Crowdfunding

    Four Days Left In Randall Grahm's "Wines Of Place" Popelouchum Crowdfunding Campaign

    by Peter Feld on 8/24/2015

    At his 400-acre Popuelouchum estate, boasted Grahm, "everything we grow tastes sensational--the tomatoes, asparagus, peas--whatever! At the end it's the place that's going to make the difference, not the grape." read more »

  • Wine explained

    Not Your Grandmother’s Sherry

    by Barbara Sturgis on 8/24/2015

    In Edgar Allan Poe’s The Cask of Amontillado, the protagonist lures his enemy into a cellar with the promise of rich Amontillado Sherry and then, rather gruesomely, immures him brick by brick. read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news August 24, 2015

    by Christopher Barnes on 8/24/2015

    The San Francisco Chronicle reports on a group of black women who were kicked off the Napa Wine Train. “Following verbal and physical abuse toward other guests and staff, it was necessary to get our police involved,” the since-deleted post reads in part, which Johnson captured in a screen grab and re-posted to Facebook. “Many groups come on board and celebrate. When those celebrations impact our other guests, we do intervene.”

    Fast Company on the rise of orange wine. "Gravner went back to Italy and he ditched technology. He went back to the beginning. He researched the earliest winemaking techniques and learned that until around 1000 AD, wine had been fermented in clay amphorae pots."

    Eater on why the Mira Winery in Napa is aging its wines underwater. "Dyke declared that they had turned a 2009 into a 2007 in three months."

    Forbes on how the Aldo Sohm Wine Bar impresses and disappoints.

    The Financial Times on five of the best wine festivals.

    Andrew Jefford in Decanter compares the sale of the Napa estate Araugo to that of a small producer in the Wachau.

    Le Pan on the argument for and against natural wines. "‘Natural’ implies that other wines are not natural. In which case, what are they? Industrial? What’s wrong with making wine in large quantities? The chemicals? Every substance on earth is made of chemicals." 

    Le Pan on Champagne's co-op stars.

    Alder Yarrow on the Champagnes of Frederic Savart.

    read more »

  • Wine news

    Wine news August 21, 2015

    by Christopher Barnes on 8/21/2015

    New York Times Travel visits Castello di Ama in Tuscany. "But just as famous as its grapes is the Pallanti family’s contemporary art collection which, sprinkled throughout the Castello’s medieval borgo, includes a Louise Bourgeois sculpture called “Topiary” (ingeniously hidden beneath a grate in the cantina floor) and an Anish Kapoor light installation, “Aima,” that illuminates the estate’s tiny chapel."

    The Guardian on affordable sparkling beyond Prsecco.

    In the New York Times Eric Asimov on the California draught and its impact on the winemaking. "n the most far-reaching effort, Delicato has begun to study how to make its irrigation more efficient. Using a combination of soil-moisture probes and infrared cameras carried by drones, it is mapping a 200-acre swatch of vineyard almost vine by vine according to the soil’s ability to retain water."

    Le Pan on sales declines in the wine auction market.

    W. Blake Gray on why people like to bash the Wine Bloggers Conference.

    Punch on island wines under $25.

    read more »


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