dorothy gaiter

  1. The Red Wave Is Here: It’s Cabernet Franc

    The Red Wave Is Here: It’s Cabernet Franc

    Sometimes – rarely, but sometimes – we taste a wine so exciting that it takes us on a journey. That just happened. It was from Murrieta’s Well in the Livermore Valley and it was sharply focused, with dark berries, variety-tagged green bell pepper, persistent acidity, herbs and vibrating energy.

    It was Cabernet Franc, from the 2019 vintage. That’s not a total surprise. If you’ve been wondering about the red wave that pundits keep talking about, it’s Cabernet Franc.

  2. 16 South African Wines That Will Make You Feel the Energy

    16 South African Wines That Will Make You Feel the Energy

    We recently visited South Africa for the first time for 10 days on a trip sponsored by Wines of South Africa. We visited dozens of wineries and attended all three days of CapeWine, a trade show featuring about 400 wineries and, we’d guess, more than 2,000 wines. Here’s a list of 16 South African wines that are available, at least a bit, in the U.S. They are in alphabetical order.

  3. The Ultimate Wine-Food Pairing Guide (or Not)

    The Ultimate Wine-Food Pairing Guide (or Not)

    We sample many wines for this column. We prefer to try them first before dinner, discuss them and then retaste with food to see how they change. We might have whites or reds, and sometimes we have both. 

  4. From Morehouse to Master Sommelier: Chris Gaither’s Journey in a Changing Wine World

    From Morehouse to Master Sommelier: Chris Gaither’s Journey in a Changing Wine World

    Chris Gaither, 38, is only the fourth Black person in the world to earn the Master Sommelier diploma and his wife of seven years, Rebecca Fineman, 43, in 2017 became the 25th woman to attain the title of Master Sommelier in the Americas chapter. The couple, who have two young daughters, say they are the only married Master Sommeliers in the world to own a restaurant, Ungrafted, which they opened in San Francisco in 2018.

  5. Wine Writers’ Symposium: Taking Risks, Earning a Living and Expanding the Table

    Wine Writers’ Symposium: Taking Risks, Earning a Living and Expanding the Table

    Wine writing is in the midst of a revolution and if you don’t think the wine on the shelves is affected by who writes about the subject, we have two words for you: Robert Parker. For a long time, wine writing was mostly the province of white men, many of whom we admire, like Hugh Johnson and Michael Broadbent. But the world has changed and so have the voices in the wine world.

    If you follow wine today, especially on social media, and your feed isn’t bursting with new voices, you need to refresh your feeds. People from all backgrounds, of all kinds, from everywhere, now are writing about wine from different perspectives. It’s a very exciting time.

    For almost 20 years, the premier gathering of wine writers has been the Wine Writers’ Symposium in Napa Valley, founded by Meadowood Napa Valley and Napa Valley Vintners. We were keynote speakers in 2019 and Dottie joined the advisory board this year. 

    Before COVID and the Napa fires and a gap year in 2020, WWS, formerly known as the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers, was an in-person event. But last year and this year, it has been virtual. The three-day session was just held, with 253 registrants from around the world and a stunning list of speakers, from Ruth Reichl to MJ Towler. We also spoke this year.

    Even if you’re not a wine geek or a wine writer, we wish you could have been there because so much of the discussion and advice was more about life than wine. Here are some of our takeaways and our favorite quotes:

     

    --Take risks! 

    Ruth Reichl, food writer, eater, cook: “The things that are the most worth doing are the things that frighten you the most.”

    Madeline Puckette, creator, Wine Folly:  My two business partners, one was a friend who became CEO of another company and he left and the other was my husband. Turns out – I love my husband, he’s an amazing dude – but he’s not that fun to work for. So we kind of went our separate ways. He said this is really your project, you should take it over. I spent the next couple of years trying to figure out how to be my own boss, which was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life.”

     

    --Wine writing should be about more than wine.

    Talia Baiocchi, Editor-in-Chief, PUNCH: “We’re always looking for the writer who’s going to ask the bigger question. Why does it matter?”

     

    ...

  6. The Black Wine Guy Experience: Packing 50 Lives into 54 Years

    The Black Wine Guy Experience: Packing 50 Lives into 54 Years

    Who is MJ Towler? And a second question: How does he do what he does so well?

  7. Rosé, Seriously: Faith Plays a Role In Cain’s First Blush

    Rosé, Seriously: Faith Plays a Role In Cain’s First Blush

    Next time you’re gulping a rosé, maybe when you’re into the second glass, stop for a second and ponder this question: Why don’t we take rosé more seriously?

    We have tasted many rosés recently and have conducted broad bl...

  8. Inside the World’s Largest All-Texas Wine List: ‘We Said to Hell With the Nay-Sayers’

    Inside the World’s Largest All-Texas Wine List: ‘We Said to Hell With the Nay-Sayers’

    Meet Ross Burtwell, executive chef and owner of Cabernet Grill in Fredericksburg, Texas, and the grill’s wine director, Elizabeth Rodriguez  Burtwell and his wife, Mariana, bought the Cabernet Grill in 2002 and, just four years later, decided to replace the international wine menu with an all-Texas list.

  9. Tasting Texas: Tempranillo, Tourism and Tesla

    Tasting Texas: Tempranillo, Tourism and Tesla

    We toured Texas Wine Country for a few days and here are some brief impressions from first-time visitors.

    --Texas’s signature red will be Tempranillo and white will be Viognier – or not. We’re starting with this because it’s marvelously controversial. Texas is so large that many in the industry don’t think it needs or can have a signature. We’d argue that wine regions require one or two to cut through the noise: New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, Malbec from Argentina, and even New Mexico sparkling wine, for instance. “You do want to be known for something,” said Patrick Connelly, general manager of highly respected Becker Vineyard...

  10. Visiting Napa and Sonoma: Tips to Enjoy a Different Experience

    Visiting Napa and Sonoma: Tips to Enjoy a Different Experience

    We almost didn’t write this column. We were approaching a special wedding anniversary -- which ones aren’t special? -- and we thought we’d return to Napa and Sonoma Wine Country to celebrate. We’d simply drive around to see the places that had sowed some of the seeds of who we’ve become, personally and professionally, since our first visit in 1975.

Posts loader
Copyright © 2022 Grape Collective. All Rights Reserved.