Category: Ramblings and Rants

Kincade Fire Menaces Sonoma County

At 6.30 pm yesterday Saturday 26 October local time, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, along with local

Powerless to Pause Harvest In California

Last week on 8 October California marked a rather sad anniversary: two years since a series of fires devastated Sonoma

I’ll Drink to That: Winemaker Rod Berglund

Episode 474 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Rod Berglund, who is both the owner

US Retailing: Cracks in the Foundations

A recent US Supreme Court ruling striking down an obscure Tennessee law has had the American wine industry abuzz for

I’ll Drink to That: Burgundy Winemaker Tomoko Kuriyama

Episode 473 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Tomoko Kuriyama, who with her husband Guillaume

I’ll Drink to That: Wine Writer and Consultant Anthony Hanson, MW

Episode 472 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Anthony Hanson MW. Anthony Hanson is the

The Phenomenal Rise of Canned Wine

I distinctly remember the first time I saw wine in a can. I was visiting the Francis Ford Coppola winery,

I’ll Drink to That: Wine Distributor Jeff Kellogg

Episode 471 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Jeff Kellogg, who returns to the show,

I’ll Drink to That: Burgundy Vigneron Jacques Seysses

Episode 470 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Jacques Seysses, who founded Domaine Dujac in

Much Ado about AVAs

Winemakers in America are increasingly running foul of regulations that have kept pace neither with the march of technology nor

I’ll Drink to That: Winegrower Mimi Casteel

Episode 469 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features owner and winegrower Mimi Casteel of the

I’ll Drink to That: Winemaker David Ramey

Episode 468 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features winemaker David Ramey, founder and co-owner of

California’s Volatile Spring

Grapevines are notoriously hardy organisms. I was recently reminded of this while driving through the back roads of Chile’s Itata

I’ll Drink to That: Burgundy Vigneron Benjamin Leroux

Episode 467 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Burgundy vigneron Benjamin Leroux of the winery

Wine Critic Robert M. Parker, Jr. Officially Retires

It’s the end of an era. Today, wine critic and founder of the Wine Advocate, Robert M. Parker, Jr announced

California is Fizzing Again

I’ve been having something of an unnerving experience of late. Receiving unsolicited wine samples from all over the world is

I’ll Drink to That: Winegrower Joe Rochioli, Jr.

Episode 466 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Joe Rochioli, Jr. of J. Rochioli Vineyards

I’ll Drink to That: Winemaker Ken Wright

Episode 465 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Ken Wright, the founder and winemaker of

California Drought Over, For Now

It’s spring in California wine country. ‘As the vines break bud and come out of dormancy closer to a normal

I’ll Drink to That: The Lifetimes of Russell Hone

Episode 464 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Russell Hone, who lives and works in

I’ll Drink to That: Geologist Brenna Quigley

Episode 463 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Brenna Quigley, a geologist who works as

I’ll Drink to That: Winegrower David Hirsch

Episode 462 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features David Hirsch, the owner of Hirsch Vineyards

BC – Sparkling With Confidence

While this column in both name and purpose focuses on the American wine scene, I find it difficult not to

I’ll Drink to That: Burgundy Winemaker Pierre Morey

Episode 461 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Pierre Morey, whose family runs Domaine Pierre

The Era of the Brand Ambassador

Selling wine in America is difficult, and getting more so. Leaving aside the highly constrained ability for wine producers to

I’ll Drink to That: Winemaker Joel Peterson

Episode 460 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Joel Peterson, Founder and Winemaker at Ravenswood

I’ll Drink to That: Wine Writer Jasper Morris

Episode 459 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Jasper Morris. Jasper is the author of

Where (Else) Wine Geeks Gather

One of the most essential of wine’s gifts has long been its ability to bring people together. This truth expresses

I’ll Drink to That: Winemaker Luis Seabra

Episode 458 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Luis Seabra. Luis is the proprietor and

The Holiday Gift Guide for Wine Lovers Who (Already) Have Everything

Giving gifts to wine lovers during the holidays can be anxiety inducing. Especially if your recipient tends to have many

I’ll Drink to That: Exporter Jeanne-Marie de Champs

Episode 457 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and features Jeanne-Marie de Champs. Jeanne-Marie de Champs is the

Vineyard Labour – Deportations vs. Deposits

Amid a tide of animosity focused on people of Mexican and Latin American descent in the US, the vineyard workers

Help Fund a Lawyer’s Highest Calling

What’s the best thing a lawyer can do with your $20? Sounds like the beginning of a joke, right? But

How to Properly Design a Wine List

When we talk about the design of a wine list, what is it that we’re talking about? Most of the

I’ll Drink to That: Winemaker Ehren Jordan

Episode 456 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and features Ehren Jordan. Ehren is the proprietor of the

The Highs and Lows of Vintage 2018

In preparing to summarise the state of the 2018 vintage in some of America’s top wine regions this week, I

Elevating Colorado Wine

What’s the ultimate sign that an emerging American wine region has finally broken out of obscurity? An influx of winemakers

I’ll Drink to That: Burgundy Vigneron Jean-Pierre de Smet

Episode 455 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and features Jean-Pierre de Smet. Jean-Pierre was a co-founder and

Wine and Weed

Elton John sang of needing ‘Three days on a diet of cocaine and wine, and a little weed just to

What’s Happening to Zinfandel?

These days, wine festivals abound across America, especially those featuring Pinot Noir, which seem to be popping up by the

I’ll Drink to That: Winemaker Maggie Harrison

Episode 454 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and features an interview with winemaker Maggie Harrison. Maggie is