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~ June 2012 Archives ~

 

06.29.2012

Vinography Images: Howell Mountain Fog

Howell Mountain Fog NAPA VALLEY, CA: A pine forest high on the slopes of Howell Mountain in the Napa Valley is shrouded in fog. Vineyards peek at the sun in gaps between these forests, which cool Howell Mountain during days where the valley floor below are baking in heat. 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... continue reading

06.28.2012

The Screaming Secondary Wine Market

One of the most difficult winery mailing lists to get on in the world is most certainly Domaine de la Romanée-Conti. Not only are the number of bottles that the domaine has to sell minuscule, but permission to be on the list is typically only granted to people whom the domaine and its agents believe are unlikely to simply turn around and resell the wine. I happen to know this because a friend of mine was recently offered such a coveted position, and when, flabbergasted, she asked why she'd been given this opportunity, the person making the offer simply said,... continue reading

06.26.2012

The Essence of Wine: Garrigue

Image © 2012 Leigh Beisch Through crystalline blue skies, the sun all but drips onto your welcoming skin. With eyes closed, you are nudged by a soft breeze, whose caress brings with it a perfume unlike any other. Redolent with sage, thyme, rosemary, lavender, and juniper, the landscape reaches for you with invisible fingers, stimulating, salivating, and ultimately seducing. This is Provence, its scrubby hills laden with weeds that have made possible some of the world's most enduring flavors and aromas. The French have not only given us this precious landscape, they have also given us the word that describes... continue reading

06.24.2012

Weingut Fred Loimer, Kamptal, Austria: Current Releases

"This can't be the way, there's nothing out here," I hear myself saying as my traveling companion and I dutifully follow the GPS into a landscape so pitch black that our high beams barely make a dent in it. All we can see is a rutted dirt road extending in front of us for as far as the beams can see, with a hill falling steeply off to the right and the edge of an embankment to the left, so close that we'll never be able to pass or turn around if we happen to run into another car. Of... continue reading

06.23.2012

Hungarian Wine: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. My Notes From the 2012 Pannon Wine Challenge.

As some of my readers know, I spent four days in May as a judge at the Pannon Wine Challenge, a national competition for Hungarian wine. While this competition is not the sole national proving ground for Hungarian wines, it is perhaps the best known. Along with eight other judges, three of whom were Hungarian, I spent many hours tasting hundreds of wines and passing judgement. In the interest of my more intrepid readers, and anyone in Hungary who cares (perhaps a bit more than my average US reader), I've decided to post all my tasting notes from the competition... continue reading

06.22.2012

Vinography Images: Coastal Ridges

Coastal Ridges SONOMA COUNTY, CA: The coastal mountains of Dry Creek Valley near Healdsburg recede in a late summer afternoon haze. 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. To set the image as your desktop wallpaper, Mac users should follow these instructions, while PC users should follow these. PRINTS: Fine art prints of this image... continue reading

06.20.2012

Syrah - The End of an Era?

For the past 20 years, the last weekend in April or the first weekend in May has always meant the same thing for thousands of wine lovers in California. Each spring at this time, we hop in our cars and make a pilgrimage to the town of Paso Robles for a round of inebriated bowling followed by two days of Syrah, Grenache, Carignane, Cinsault, and every other grape you'd expect in the line-up at an event named Hospice du Rhône. The event, which grew out of wine lover Matt Garretson's love of Viognier, has long been the premier Rhône-focused event... continue reading

06.15.2012

Vinography Images: Fingers in the Fog

Fingers in the Fog ALEXANDER VALLEY, CA: A dormant Sonoma County Zinfandel vineyard shrouded in fog offers the dark shapes of old vines against the morning sun. 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. To set the image as your desktop wallpaper, Mac users should follow these instructions, while PC users should follow these. PRINTS:... continue reading

06.14.2012

Winners of Pinot Days Ticket Contest

Last week, I wrote about the upcoming Pinot Days tasting in San Francisco, and offered to give away four pairs of tickets to the brave souls that were willing to write poems to the "heartbreak grape." Well, I'm now happy to announce the winners, and to showcase their efforts. Thanks for the fun. By the time you read this I will have reached out to you with information about tickets, so shoot me a note if you haven't heard from me. Thanks for playing! And for the rest of you, enjoy some Pinot Poetry. WINNER #1 - AUTUMN CRONIN H... continue reading

06.08.2012

Vinography Images: Grape Compost

Grape Compost FORT BRAGG, CA: Compost made from the leftover seeds and skins (aka pomace) are held in this Mendocino County photo taken at Pacific Star Winery. 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. To set the image as your desktop wallpaper, Mac users should follow these instructions, while PC users should follow these. PRINTS:... continue reading

06.06.2012

The Essence of Wine: Lemon

Image © 2012 Leigh Beisch Bright as sunshine, electric in its sour purity, lemon is one of life's most essential flavors. Its true origins in southeast Asia may never be known, but after a long career as primarily an ornamental and occasionally medicinal fruit, lemons found their first real fans during the Italian Renaissance. By the time Columbus began his voyage, lemon seeds were prized enough to be included as cargo, and bestowed as gifts upon the new world. Few cuisines of the world fail now to incorporate lemon, and fewer parents have forgotten the face that accompanies an infant's... continue reading

06.05.2012

Italy's Best Wines?: Highlights from the 2012 Tre Bicchieri Tasting

One of the pitfalls involved in blogging-as-therapy, as opposed to blogging-as-profession manifests as the paradox of too much content. If I made my living at wine blogging I'd need to post several times per day, and I'm sure I'd be looking for good content in between my sofa cushions. But since I blog, at best, once a day, and not even seven days a week anymore, I have way more to write about than I have time to write it. Too many wines I've drunk, too many places I've been, and too many events attended. All of which is a... continue reading

06.04.2012

Scenes from Auction Napa Valley 2012

I spent the weekend reveling -- both in Summer and in wine -- thanks to the annual fete known as Auction Napa Valley. Put on each year by the Napa Valley Vintners Association, this weekend-long party serves to both celebrate Napa, it's wines, and the lifestyle they represent, as well as do a whole hell of a lot of good for the local community. The centerpieces to the weekend are the barrel auction, where entire barrels of wine are available for sale, and the live auction, where packages of wine, travel, and other experiences are offered to the highest bidder.... continue reading

06.03.2012

2012 Pinot Days Tasting: June 14-16, San Francisco

There once was a time when the Pinot Days tasting was the new kid on the block in San Francisco. Now in it's eightth year, Pinot Days has firmly established itself as one of the largest and most exciting Pinot Noir events in America. If you enjoy Pinot Noir, or you are still trying to figure out if you do, this is an event that should not be missed. Pinot Days offers a number of events to existing and prospective lovers of the grape. This year's format is a whole week of events, with restaurant-based events throughout the week leading... continue reading

06.01.2012

Vinography Images: Cabernet Sprawl

Cabernet Sprawl NAPA VALLEY, CA: Cabernet Sauvignon grapevines grow quickly under the summer sun in a vineyard near Sterling Vineyard & Winery close to Calistoga. 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. To set the image as your desktop wallpaper, Mac users should follow these instructions, while PC users should follow these. PRINTS: Fine art... 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.

Calendar of Postings

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Most Recent Entries

Vinography Images: Howell Mountain Fog The Screaming Secondary Wine Market The Essence of Wine: Garrigue Weingut Fred Loimer, Kamptal, Austria: Current Releases Hungarian Wine: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. My Notes From the 2012 Pannon Wine Challenge. Vinography Images: Coastal Ridges Syrah - The End of an Era? Vinography Images: Fingers in the Fog Winners of Pinot Days Ticket Contest Vinography Images: Grape Compost

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.