"Satire is traditionally the weapon of the powerless against the powerful."--Molly Ivins
Thursday, January 9, 2014
What Not to Publish on Your Stupid Wine Blog in 2014
Oh, for God’s sake, don’t interview your pets. They cough up furballs. They eat their own shit. They lick themselves endlessly. May as well interview Jay McInerney.
Stop calling them “somms.” You use that because you’re stupid and can’t pronounce “sommelier” properly. You also say cute and nauseating words like “peeps.” “Hey, those somms are my peeps.” Now even Sommelier Journal has been reduced to The Somm Journal. Yeah, that’s respectful. Maybe we’ll soon have “The New England Journal of Quacks.” Sure, bartenders, stinking BARTENDERS, are now “Mixologists,” like they have a degree from Harvard in Mixology—the study of Mix—but sommeliers are now the diminutive “somm.” Mixologists are just BARTENDERS that put weird fruit in your cocktail and charge you quadruple the price. They’re not mixologists, they’re fructivores. Let’s call them dumb “frucs.”
Lists are over. Lists are just lazy ways to kill a post. You haven’t posted for a while, you have “writer’s block,” which is astonishing considering you’re about as much a writer as Raj Parr is a winemaker, so you make up a list of your favorite wines, or your favorite wineries, or your favorite lists. No one cares. Believe me, not one single yutz who reads your blog cares about your asinine list. Here’s MY list of my favorite wines of 2013:
5. Oh, shit, what was the name of it? I had it in that Italian restaurant, it was made from Aglianico, I think, or Refosco, maybe. Started with an “A.” I’ll think of it.
4. That wine from the Cabernet tasting we did. You know, with the animal on the label, what was that? It was a natural wine, I remember that. Smelled like that time you had stinkfinger from your cousin Annie.
3. The label was mostly gray, and it was Pinot Noir, either from the Williamette Valley, or could have been New Zealand. For sure, it was 2010.
2. It was some awesome Rhone from Kermit Lynch. Had like a thingie on the bottle. Really good.
1. I could have killed three bottles of this stuff! I mean, Wow. I can see the label, but I can’t quite remember. I’ll know it when I see it again, I mean, fuck, it was awesome.
See? Stupid. Just stop. Don’t be so goddam lazy. Think of something interesting to say.
Let’s just be frank. There are no great wines under $15. Stop pretending there are. There are perfectly fine wines under $15, there are wines you can enjoy and be happy you tasted under $15, but there just aren’t GREAT wines under $15. Blow me. Stop selling wine short. You criticize Parker for exaggerating, you badmouth Wine Spectator for inflating scores, and then you write about GREAT wines under $15. Shut the hell up.
We know Steve Matthiasson is a great winemaker. You’re the 150th person this year to tell us that. Wow! How insightful. Can’t wait to read that.
There’s nothing left to say about social media. Nothing. There wasn’t shit to begin with, now there’s nothing. It doesn’t sell wine, it sells social media. What isn’t social media? Telephones sell more fucking wine than social media. Oh, but phones are social media, right?! If it sells wine, chumps, it’s social media; if it’s social media, it sells wine. It’s the classic huckster logic. Stop talking about it. No one cares. Wineries really don’t care. Wineries that can’t sell wine have one problem—they make crappy wine. When social media makes better wine, let me know. Otherwise, bite me.
They’re just dogs. That they live at a winery, what kind of idiot cares about that? Post pictures of service dogs. They help blind people, and veterans with PTSD (not “vets,” OK, they deserve respect, like SOMMELIERS!). Winery dogs? Glorified door mats.
Terroir. Stop trying to figure it out. You can’t. Terroir in wine is like a soul in humans. You look for it every time, but, most of the time, it ain’t there. And, honestly, no one believes you when you say a wine has terroir anyway. First of all, you pronounce it as stupidly as you do sommelier. And second of all, you say things like, “Oh, that’s the terroir talking,” like that means something. There must be 20 billion microclimates in the wine world. One assumes they all have terroir. So who gives a crap? Oh, but this guy knows how to express the terroir! Maybe to you, blowhard. The guy next door to him thinks his wine sucks. I just don’t care. I want the wine to taste good, I don’t need it to slip me its address.
Stop posting pictures from your glamorous wine junkets. You suck at photography, and I didn’t come here to look at your adolescent scrap book. Plus, who are those dumpy people you’re with? For the most part, your colleagues have the doughy complexion of the overdrinking endomorphs they are. Leave that crap on FaceBook where no one will see it.
Just stop spouting your usual mindless blather in 2014. You know you’re doing it when you do it. Promise yourself you’ll stop. You’d be doing us all a favor. Truly. We're all just laughing at you.
After 19 years as a Sommelier in Los Angeles, twice named Sommelier of the Year by the Southern California Restaurant Writers' Association, I moved to Sonoma County to explore the other aspects of the wine business. I've spent, OK wasted, 35 years learning about and teaching about and swallowing wine. I am also a judge at the Sonoma Harvest Fair, San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and the San Francisco International Wine Competition--so I can spit like a rabid llama. I know more about wine than David Sedaris and I'm funnier than James Laube. Stay tuned for an informed but jaded view of everything wine and everything else.
I'm living proof that alcohol kills brain cells.
What the Critics Are Saying About HoseMaster of Wine
"If you want a great hoot and howl moment or two...go read the HoseMaster's year-end reflections...that guy is without a doubt the funniest SOB in the blog-world...and thank him for having the brains and balls to target his laser of laughter on anybody...HoseMaster for President...HoseMaster for Blogger of the Year...although he would be the first to say the bar is so damn low for that award, he should win it every year..." --Robert Parker
"...With sometimes crude analogies and occasional droppings of f-bombs, Washam cleverly uses satire to expose the underbelly of the wine business. It's often hilarious stuff as long as you're not the one being lampooned. Washam takes no prisoners in skewering all that is silly, stupid, frustrating and pretentious about wine, and his favorite targets are other bloggers and writers. No one is immune."
--Linda Murphy in "Vineyard and Winery Management"
"No one is immune from California sommelier and wine judge Ron Washam's skewering. He polishes that skewer with boundless enthusiasm and acuity." --JancisRobinson.com
"As serious as the world of wine is, it does allow time for humor. Each Monday and Thursday, Ron Washam customarily posts a commentary on his needling wine blog HoseMaster of Wine. Washam, a former sommelier and comedy writer – he might say they are closely related – is the most opinionated, humorous and ribald observer in the wine world. His body of work is irreverent and remorseless. It’s almost always satire and parody, though he occasionally drifts into straight commentary, sometimes even with tasting notes. This past year, one of his posts was named the best of the year in the Wine Blog Awards. His success has spawned several imitations, which in their awkwardness show just how difficult satire is."
--Mike Dunne, Sacramento Bee
Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2014/01/21/6089630/dunne-on-wine-wine-blogs-and-bloggers.html#storylink=cpy
"Please let this guy write the scripts for Saturday Night Live which has gotten so lame...his newest "wisdom" is worth an Emmy....I wonder if he is the genius behind all those Hitler/Parker,etc. clips? No one else is remotely as funny or as talented.And the wine world sure needs someone to poke fun at all the nonsense and phoney/baloney unsufferable crap out there."
"Washam uses his own blog, HoseMaster of Wine, to skewer the industry in general and wine blogs in particular. If your mouse scoots to your browser's close box while reading a wine blog, Washam may be the blogger for you."
--San Francisco Chronicle
"Ron Washam, former sommelier, is easily the most bitingly funny blogger/wine writer that we have ever come across. He is an equal opportunity crusader who pillories big wineries and amateur bloggers alike, as well as everything and everyone in between...One needs a sense of humor and a tolerance for earthiness to enjoy reading The Hosemaster. We must have both because this guy deserves a wider audience, in our humble opinion." --Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine
"In my opinion, and that of many others, his blog is one of the best. And in terms of satirical or parodic wine blogs, it has no peer. Ron’s alert eye catches every pretense and skewers it with laugh out loud mercilessness."
"This site should carry a warning label. It's sort of a Dave Barry/George Carlin approach to wine. The Hosemaster (real name Ron Washam) skewers fellow bloggers and industry savants with glee, while offering hilarious wine guides such as his Honest Guide to Grapes..."
--Paul Gregutt, Seattle Times
"Washam is a skilled wine judge (I have judged with him) who is willing to judge wine double blind, in public. To my knowledge, Parker does not do this and never has. So Ron's credentials are in place, and so is his sense of the absurd."
--Dan Berger, VintageExperiences
"...I consider Ron a very talented writer and I’ve long been an admirer of his scathing wit..."
"And if any free sites think they can conquer the world, there’s always the Hosemaster to take ‘em down a notch."
--Tyler Colman "Dr. Vino"
"Those of you who know Ron either love or hate him, because he throws jabs like a punch drunk boxer, and we’re all in the firing line. He’ll throw them if he hates you, and he’ll throw them if he loves you. He’s a satirist of exceptional quality."
--Jo Diaz "Juicy Tales by Jo Diaz"
"I must say you are an idiot. I've never liked you. I have no idea why people find you funny."
--Reign of Terroir
Robert (Joseph) was/is funny unlike HoseMaster who wasn't/isn't.