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72 hours in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

I’ve just spent a lovely long weekend in Kuala Lumpur with my Kiwi winemaker friend Natalie Christensen. We’d been looking for a half-way point to meet up, and for both of us this was around 12 hours flying. It’s a great city for short break, and without trying too hard to fill all our time, [...]

Some new release Pinots from Seresin

Biodynamic producer Seresin are one of the most interesting in Marlborough. Winemaker Clive Dougall is thoughtful and produces a range of wines that’s quite distinctive, and not typically Marlborough in style (in the best way). I always find the Pinot Noirs really interesting: they have savoury detail to them, and aren’t just about upfront fruit. [...]

Remembering Haridimos Hatzidakis

It is with great sadness that I learned last week of the passing of winemaker Haridimos Hatzidakis, one of Greece's finest winemakers. At the age of fifty, we lost him far too soon, and I can't imagine his family's heartbreak at the tragedy. Show More Summary

Wine News: What I'm Reading the Week of 8/20/17

Welcome to my weekly roundup of the wine stories that I find of interest on the web. I post them to my magazine on on Flipboard, but for those of you who aren't Flipboard inclined, here's everything I've strained out of the wine-related...Show More Summary

Vinography Unboxed: Week of August 13, 2017

Hello, and welcome to my periodic dig through the samples pile. I'm pleased to bring you the latest installment of Vinography Unboxed, where I highlight some of the better bottles that have crossed my doorstep recently. This week's wines...Show More Summary

IPNC: notes on 33 Pinot Noirs from Oregon

The International Pinot Noir Celebration (IPNC) is held each July in McMinnville, Oregon. This was my third time at this remarkable event, which brings together consumers and trade in a happy celebration of this thrilling grape variety, in the lovely setting of the Linfield College grounds. Over the course of the weekend, I tried quite [...]

Vinography Images: Modern History

Modern History SAINT-ÉMILION, FRANCE: The modern sweep of concrete architecture contrasts with vineyards and historic buildings at Chateau Cheval Blanc in Bordeaux. Cheval Blanc, which means "white horse" in French, is one of only four...Show More Summary

Brooks: Pinot Noir and Riesling from this top Oregon estate

The view from the Brooks tasting room Brooks is one of Oregon’s unsung stars. Their 14 000 case production is split among many small lots, with the largest fermentation in the winery occurring in 2.5 ton fermenters. They source from a range of growers. They’ve also focused more on a direct to consumer model, which [...]

Land of The Free, Home of the Wine Club

Along with apple pie, hot dogs, hamburgers and baseball, we need to add one more thing to the list of things qualifying as quintessentially American: the monthly wine club. For many years, I simply supposed that these schemes were universal,...Show More Summary

Nine BA lounge whites, a bit of a mixed bunch, but some surprises

There are quite a few bottles open in the BA lounge (I’m off travelling again…), so I did a tasting. I’m following the example of one of my wine heroes, Oz Clarke. Whenever he’s in an airport, or on a plane, he makes a point of trying all the wines. I admire his dedication, and [...]

Wine News: What I'm Reading the Week of 8/13/17

Welcome to my weekly roundup of the wine stories that I find of interest on the web. I post them to my magazine on on Flipboard, but for those of you who aren't Flipboard inclined, here's everything I've strained out of the wine-related...Show More Summary

A wine from Bolivia! Campos de Solano Tannat Malbec

Normally, Bolivia would be far to warm to make quality wines. But altitude changes things. This wine comes from the Tarija Valley in Bolivia, where the vineyards are at 1850 metres (6000 feet). Indeed, the region is practically on the Argentine border, not a long way from the high-altitude Salta wine region. This elevation makes [...]

Winemaking ideologies, my contribution to the Texsom debate

Yesterday at Texsom I took part in a discussion on winemaking ideologies, with a very good panel. Each of us was asked to prepare something to say, so I wrote something. When it actually came to it, I didn’t cover all this ground, but I thought I’d share it, anyway. Market segmentation is important here. For [...]

Texsom: Germany’s finest – VDP Grosses Gewächs

This TexSom tasting focused on Grosses Gewächs: these are wines produced from top vineyard sites in Germany by members of a high-end producers club called the VDP, which began life in 1910. As with all things to do with German wine, things are complicated, and explaining the details of how the VDP’s vineyard classification isn’t [...]

The Dirty Guide, Vermont Book Events!

There are quite a few coming next week to lovely Vermont Don't yet have the book? There's a remedy for that. Sunday, August 20th with La Pascaline Lepeltier at La Garagista with Deidre and Caleb. (I believe this is sold out, but youShow More Summary

Vinography Unboxed: Week of August 6, 2017

Hello, and welcome to my periodic dig through the samples pile. I'm pleased to bring you the latest installment of Vinography Unboxed, where I highlight some of the better bottles that have crossed my doorstep recently. This week's wines included a couple of very interesting wines. Show More Summary

Texsom: exploring the wines of Mexico

Serafin Alvarado and Wayne Belding presented this seminar on Mexican wines, a subject I’ve virtually no experience of. Mexico isn’t an obvious place to grow high quality wine grapes: it’s a warm country at a latitude of 30 degrees north. There’s very little wine grown at these latitudes in the northern hemisphere, but the key thing [...]

Selling Wine in Mason Jars

I’m holding a bottle of wine it's taken me almost sixty years to make. I pull the cork and pour a few ounces into a more-or-less clean Mason jar. It seems we are going back in time. Decades ago, when I was building a new fine wine distribution...Show More Summary

Portuguese Wine Week Minnesota – Interview with Jason Kallsen

Jason Kallsen is a force of nature in the Twin Cities wine scene with his wine education company Twin Cities Wine Education. Our relationship with Jason goes back many, many years to when he sold wine to Ryan as the Manager of a wine shop in Minnetonka, Minnesota. Show More Summary

Texsom: S&M wines seminar

Not all wines are easy. There’s a stream of thought in the wine world that the wine industry should do better at giving ‘consumers’ what they want. We change wines to suit peoples’ tastes and preferences. If people find sweetness in red wines delicious, then let’s give them red wines sweetened up with a bit [...]

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