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~ April 2011 Archives ~

 

04.29.2011

Vinography Images: Spring Maintenance

Spring Maintenance This is generally what vineyards all over the Northern Hemisphere look like right now, and there are vineyard workers like these out doing all sorts of things that might be considered Spring maintenance. Meanwhile, in the Southern Hemisphere, where this image was taken, harvest has begun. -- Alder Yarrow INSTRUCTIONS: Download this image by right-clicking on the image and selecting "save link as" or "save target as" and then select the desired location on your computer to save the image. Mac users can also just click the image to open the full size view and drag that... continue reading

04.28.2011

Vote for Vinography in the Saveur Blog Awards

I found out yesterday that Saveur has announced the finalists for its second annual Blog Awards, and Vinography is one of the nominees. The others are Alice Feiring, Blog About Beer, Good Wine Under $20, Washington Beer Blog and Wine Terroirs. None of us makes a living tapping away in our respective little corners of the Internet, so, apart from the enthusiasm of our individual readers, such awards are among the few bits of official validation we receive for our efforts. If you enjoy Vinography, I'd be pleased to receive your vote -- as would any of the other nominees... continue reading

04.26.2011

The Best Central Coast Pinot?: Tasting at the World of Pinot Noir

I don't know about you, but spending a couple of days tasting Pinot Noir while strolling along cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean is definitely my idea of a good time. Back at the beginning of March, I joined several hundred other wine enthusiasts for the World of Pinot Noir, a two day festival celebrating Pinot Noir set in the idyllic seaside tourist town of Shell Beach. Well known for its festive atmosphere and an emphasis (though not an exclusive focus by any means) on showcasing the Pinot Noirs of the Central Coast, WOPN, as it is abbreviated, draws Pinot Noir... continue reading

04.24.2011

Turkish Wine: Some Initial Tasting Notes

Exploring new wine regions continues to be one of my greatest thrills as a wine lover and wine writer. And when I say new wine regions, I mean new to me, of course. I wish I were writing these words above the bustling streets of Istanbul or out in the countryside off the Aegean, but sadly my first explorations of Turkish wine had to be as an armchair traveler. Or should I say, by-the-bottle traveler? At the great generosity of a Turkish friend, who happens to be a wine critic for a Turkish newspaper, I got the chance to spend... continue reading

04.22.2011

Vinography Images: The Wine Library

The Wine Library I always enjoy poking around in the wine cellars of wineries. I like seeing where they keep their reserve stocks -- their wine libraries of past vintages from which they carefully select a bottle to serve or share on special occasions. Something about dusty bottles thrills me, tapping into my adolescent passion for treasure hunting. -- Alder Yarrow INSTRUCTIONS: Download this image by right-clicking on the image and selecting "save link as" or "save target as" and then select the desired location on your computer to save the image. Mac users can also just click the... continue reading

04.21.2011

Don't Steal Mommy's Wine

My daughter gets a kick out of smelling what's in our glasses when we're drinking with dinner, but she knows better than to steal mommy's wine. Apparently, though, not everyone else is as careful. A number of people just landed in court over Mommy's wine. The wine world is notorious for its highly aggressive, even draconian, protection of brand names. Who knew that one of those brand names was "Mommy?" "MommyJuice" and "Mommy's Time Out" are apparently in a death match to determine which has the right to Mommy's name. Careful kids, don't make me separate you! Don't you know... continue reading

04.15.2011

Vinography Images: Across the Valley

Across the Valley This is a classic view of Chilean wine country, with gently rolling hills on the valley floor and the mountains and stark blue sky. I believe this is a view across the Carmenere vineyards of Casa Silva called Los Lingues, about 80 miles south of Santiago in the Colchagua valley -- Alder Yarrow INSTRUCTIONS: Download this image by right-clicking on the image and selecting "save link as" or "save target as" and then select the desired location on your computer to save the image. Mac users can also just click the image to open the full... continue reading

04.14.2011

Passover and Kosher Wine: Time to Graduate from Manischewitz

Growing up, my attendance at Passover seders was spotty at best, not for any lack of cajoling or even demands on my mother's part. I suppose we hadn't ever gone regularly enough for it to feel like a family tradition, so despite all the usual methods used to make it tolerable for kids, I found the whole thing interminable. Despite being a poor-excuse-for-a-Jew, I do have fond memories of my few encounters with Manischewitz. With just the right combination of verboten and high sugar content (especially for a hippie kid that didn't get much sugar at a young age) it... continue reading

04.13.2011

Cheap Wine vs. Expensive Wine: No Contest

Why do journalists continue to consider it a revelation that the "average" consumer can't tell a $8 wine from a $45 wine? This ground has been covered so many times, yet trials of this sort (in this case roughly 600 consumers at the Edinburgh Science Fair) continue to be conducted. I certainly don't begrudge those who have the curiosity to test this hypothesis themselves, rather than relying on the tests that have already been done. And I actually appreciate the extent to which such tests and their inevitable results help ordinary wine consumers feel good about their enjoyment of wines... continue reading

04.12.2011

Hospice du Rhone 2011 Tasting: April 28-30, Paso Robles

Most wine tasting events focused on a specific style or type of wine that take place in California suffer from a single, but important deficit: they feature almost exclusively California wines. Go to a Pinot Noir event, and you get 95% California Pinots, etc. There are a few notable exceptions to this, however, and one of my favorites is the annual fete for Rhone style wines called Hospice du Rhone. For those who have not had the pleasure of attending Hospice du Rhone, it is a unique treat for anyone who enjoys this kind of wine. Attendees spend a laid-back... continue reading

04.08.2011

Vinography Images: The Wilds of Bio Bio

The Wilds of Bio Bio One of the wine regions I really wanted to visit, but didn't get a chance to while I was in Chile was Bio Bio. Several of Chile's wine regions are "frontier-like" but Bio Bio is very much a new frontier of cool-climate winegrowing. While I was in Chile I heard rumblings of top producers from Burgundy falling in love with the region, which seems poised to be a potential source of excellent Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, and, in the case of the vines shown here, Chardonnay. -- Alder Yarrow INSTRUCTIONS: Download this image by... continue reading

04.05.2011

Low(er) Alcohol California Pinot Noir: Tasting Notes from 'In Pursuit of Balance'

Spring certainly seems to be Pinot Noir season in the Bay Area. Several major Pinot focused events -- the Pinot Noir Shootout, the World of Pinot Noir, the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival, the Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Passport Event, etc. -- all occur within a span of about three months. To this impressive list, we may be able to add yet one more annual event, judging by the crush of the crowd at the first ever "In Pursuit of Balance" tasting held a couple of weeks ago at RN74 in San Francisco. This was a somewhat unusual Pinot Noir... continue reading

04.03.2011

Airline Wine: (Nearly) Everything You Wanted To Know

So there I was, sitting in Business Class on my way across the country, courtesy of an all-too-rare-these-days upgrade (thanks to my lowly status), and the option of having a glass of wine with my lunch arose. Always up for an adventure, I ordered the Merlot, and gamely tucked in, when I had the chance. It was awful. The sort of wine that I didn't want to have a second mouthful of. The wine had just underperformed my very low expectations, which I thought was hard to do. You see, it's been a long time since I had what I... continue reading

04.01.2011

Vinography Images: Rolling Vineyards

Rolling Vineyards Nicely tended vineyards have a wonderful effect on rolling hills, turning them into sculpture. The hills above are found in the lovely winegrowing region of Leyda in Central Chile. Cooled by breezes from the sea, Leyda has become known for its Sauvignon Blanc. -- Alder Yarrow INSTRUCTIONS: Download this image by right-clicking on the image and selecting "save link as" or "save target as" and then select the desired location on your computer to save the image. Mac users can also just click the image to open the full size view and drag that to their desktops.... continue reading

But Wait, There's More!

This page only has the last sixty entries in this category. If you're interested in digging farther into my archives, you'll want to use the complete list of archives to access my articles by month.

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Most Recent Entries

Vinography Images: Spring Maintenance Vote for Vinography in the Saveur Blog Awards The Best Central Coast Pinot?: Tasting at the World of Pinot Noir Turkish Wine: Some Initial Tasting Notes Vinography Images: The Wine Library Don't Steal Mommy's Wine Vinography Images: Across the Valley Passover and Kosher Wine: Time to Graduate from Manischewitz Cheap Wine vs. Expensive Wine: No Contest Hospice du Rhone 2011 Tasting: April 28-30, Paso Robles

Favorite Posts From the Archives

Masuizumi Junmai Daiginjo, Toyama Prefecture Wine.Com Gives Retailers (and Consumers) the Finger 1961 Hospices de Beaune Emile Chandesais, Burgundy Wine Over Time The Better Half of My Palate 1999 Királyudvar "Lapis" Tokaji Furmint, Hungary What's Allowed in Your Wine and Winemaking Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Appreciating Wine in Context The Soul vs. The Market 1989 Fiorano Botte 48 Semillion,Italy

Archives by Month

 

Required Reading for Wine Lovers

The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud Adventures on the Wine Route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson The World's Greatest Wine Estates by Robert M. Parker, Jr.