Showing posts with label What We're Reading. Show all posts
Showing posts with label What We're Reading. Show all posts

Thursday, July 11, 2013

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

PALATE PRESS: The big news over at Palate Press is that editor David Honig, in tribute to the wooden prose of its contributors, has rechristened the online wine publication, “Pallet Press.” Hell, he can do what he likes, he’s Chairman of the Bored. Among the current features is one exposing the inadequacies of wine competitions. You can’t miss it, it’s right above the vacuous Pallet Press wine review of a Merlot that was awarded 92 points by somebody or other. Dorothy Gaiter, who once wrote the wine column for Wall Street Journal with her husband Wally, contributes an interesting piece on the 2010 vintage in Bordeaux. “While most of the famous Bordeaux went to the Chinese market, I found a few bottles in a Korean liquor store you might like.”

STEVE HEIMOFF: It’s “Out of Ideas” Week over at STEVE!, and you won’t want to miss a single day of it. Monday begins the week with a post on what you do when you run out of ideas, “Post about wine bloggers.” Tuesday, STEVE! makes the case that “my post yesterday should be nominated for next year’s Wine Blog Awards.” Wednesday, it’s a personal reflection on how Wednesday’s piece “strongly affected the way I want to live.” Thursday, a fun-loving return to Monday’s topic, “And I’m the only critic who will even talk about how he’s completely out of ideas, though they all are.” Friday’s post is a return to his usual cry for help.

WINE SPECTATOR: Foodies rejoice! It’s the Grand Awards Issue! Wine Spectator honors restaurants that have wine lists that weigh more than 100 pounds--restaurants that set their tables with a knife and forklift. This year’s new recipients include Thomas Keller’s newest restaurant, Per Rina, where the cuisine is made entirely of dog and cat food. “We like to think,” Keller has said, “that Grandma needs a special restaurant too.” The wine list at Per Rina has more than 1500 selections, including a large selection of Burgundy, as well as a large cuisine-appropriate selection of bottled waters from European toilet bowls. And, something of a surprise, Paula Deen’s new establishment, Minstrel Show, wins an Award of Excellence for its extensive selection of Malbecs. “Somebody tol’ me it’s the black wine of Cahors,” Deen says in the magazine, “so I wanted to have plenty for my darkie friends.” Côt with her gigantic panties down again. Tim Fish writes about tipping sommeliers, “You sneak up on ‘em just like you do with cows and shove really hard.”

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Jay McInerney takes us on an exclusive tour of billionaire Bill Koch’s wine cellar. “Now that you’re here,” Koch tells him, “my collection of wine frauds is complete.” Koch offers McInerney the chance to try any bottle in his legendary cellar. “Tens of thousands of bottles, the history of wine in a single room, the ghosts of every legendary winemaker from Andre Tschelistcheff to Leroy hovering over us, an open invitation to open bottled history; I didn’t want so see the expression on Koch’s face when I chose the one wine I can never resist. ‘Wow, you have Turley Zin?!’” Lettie Teague opines on concrete eggs, “It saves you a lot of money on birth control.”

Fermentation has another post on the American Wine Consumer Coalition that compares it to Lincoln freeing the slaves with the Emancipation Proclamation. “Wine consumers are the 21st Century version of slaves; and if I’m exaggerating, well, someone can shoot me in the balcony.” Might be more appropriate to plug him in the lobby.

Charlie Olken over at Connoisseurs’ Guide reflects on his involvement with the AWCC, “Every new member receives a free 1-year subscription to our online publication, or a tostada. One will give you gas, the other is a nice meal.”

Terroirist’s David White reflects on his participation in AWCC. “Consumers need a voice, and, as a former speech writer for George W. Bush, I can tell you, that voice doesn’t have to be smart or honest, it just has to say it with a straight face.”

1WineDoody weighs in on the AWCC, “If you people aren’t willing to stand up to the big distributors and your state legislatures, if you won’t put your money where your winehole is, then you’re just going to end up like Supertramp—no one will give a s**t about you.” Yeah, we don’t know what that means either. I guess he wants us to Give a Little Bit.

Alice Feiring has opened her own branch, “I’ve decided to found the American Natural Wine Consumers Coalition. It’s just like the AWCC, only we try to intervene as minimally as possible. We’re the Authentic voice, though we’re almost always alone.”

The New York Cork Report isn’t convinced, “ We’re skeptical of the AWCC. The last ‘great’ idea Wark had was the Wine Blog Awards. Look at the idiots who win those. The HoseMaster? He writes jokes and insults people. Wine writing is serious business and we won’t tolerate it being any other way.” New York Cork Report is the Taliban of wine blogging, only without the native charm and cool hats.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

WINE SPECTATOR:  In their First Annual Swimsuit Issue, Wine Spectator has some sexy and revealing photo shoots. Thomas Mathews looks particularly wanton in his Speedo with the number “99” in bold on the front.  A shot of the same suit from the back reveals “With a Torpedo” written across his rear. Not sure what that means. And here’s Jim Laube surrounded by several topless bikini models, their breasts shyly hidden, in a shoot entitled, “Tit-ratable Acidity--I Rate Those 49 Points Each” A little T & A with your TA seems perfect. Harvey Steiman visits a nude beach in Australia in a clever parody of “King Leer” entitled “You Aren’t the Barossa Me.” Matt Kramer pens “Making Sense of Thongs.” Tim Fish gets a Brazilian but doesn’t know where to keep her. And who’s on the cover? None other than Marvin himself, looking (vo)luminous in the latest style from Ringling Brothers.

SOMMELIER JOURNAL:  Nah, we’re not actually reading this. It’s been proven to be the major cause of Premature Pretension in rodents. And, yes, it is an actual magazine, though it’s about as likely a Sommelier has a Journal as the Atlantic has a Monthly.

DECANTER:  Andrew Jefford tells the story of Sir Freddie Ossis of Liverpool, who was the first Master of Wine. Sir Ossis MW was a legendary wine taster, who, when asked if he had ever confused Burgundy with Bordeaux, graciously responded, “Oh, do fuck off.” Sir Ossis of Liverpool may be best remembered, Jefford writes, “for starting the great tradition of exposing himself to every winemaker he could find.” No, that’s what he meant.  Jamie Goode makes the case that terroir is just like ectoplasm, but not as gooey, and with a nice minerally finish. Tim Atkin MW on what Bordeaux can learn from the Girl Scouts of Amercia. “The future of Bordeaux futures is having young girls sell them in front of supermarkets. When you think about it, Classified Growths are just overpriced cookies too.”

1WINEDOODY:  Joe Roberts announces his three new wine gigs. “I don’t know how I ended up lucky enough to land the prestigious WineBeaver position at Go there now and read my first post, ‘I love Chablis when it’s Flynty.’ Hey, it might interfere with my gig, but I don’t think so. Hustler wants my posts to be more penetrating. I’m also being paid to be an expert witness in the upcoming Dr. Conti trial to prove how easy it is to fool wine lovers. And as if that weren’t enough, I’m also the new wine consultant for North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, or as I call him, The Second Most Powerful K-J.”

WALL STREET JOURNAL:  Jay McInerney writes about his first experience at VinItaly. “You’d think, first of all, that I’d get to meet Vin. I loved him in ‘Fast and Furious.’” McInerney is impressed by the wines of Valpolicella, “Did you know that the grapes for Amarone are dried out on mats? Sounds like a party I went to many years ago on Jackie Onassis’ yacht.” “Italian wines are the greatest wines on Earth, but there are so many of them, and from so many varieties of grapes, that, frankly, it’s just not worth my time to try and understand them. I like Cabernet.” Lettie Teague has insights about frost protection, “Wear earmuffs.”

At Vinography, Alder Yarrow wonders what climate change will to do his tongue. “If Napa gets any hotter, I’ll be panting twice as hard. Though I love a nice pair of pants.”

Dr. Vino says recent climate change projections leave out a major factor, “If they’d just stop the Napa Valley auction, imagine how that would reduce the amount of methane released into the atmosphere.”

Tom Wark talks about climate change from a different perspective, “Why don’t we just call it what it is, a way for the country’s distributors to drive small wineries out of the business? They can’t stop direct shipping, so they’re raising the temperature in wine country. What can you do? Buy a cooked wine today!”

“It’s not getting hotter, it’s not, it’s not,” writes STEVE! Heimoff, “and I’m going to hold my breath until you stop saying that.”

W. Blinky Gray responds to the climate change controversy, “Why is everyone in the business in denial? I wrote about this five years ago. I was right then, and I’m right now, when I say everyone else is wrong.”

Lily-Elaine Hawk Wakawaka Boom Shakalakalaka Boom Shakalaka has a more philosophical bent, “Change is inevitable. Our planet is a living organism, and like every human, like all of us, must live with change and metamorphosis and death. Surrender, Earthlings.”

Alice Feiring writes, “I just hate the way it makes my hair frizzy.”

David White at Terrorist wonders, “How much longer can I keep quoting idiots?”

Thursday, February 28, 2013

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine 

WINE SPECTATOR: You’ll want to read Jenna Talia Baiocchi’s final column for Wine Spectator Online, “Holy Crap, Why Didn’t Someone Tell Me How Old These Creeps Are?” James Laube writes candidly about his experience at the Napa Valley Premiere Barrel Tasting of 2011 Cabernets, and how embarrassed he was to attend dressed as Grace Kelly because someone mentioned that at a barrel tasting you’d better Catch a Thief. Surprisingly, several attendees mistook him for Natalie MacLean. Tim Fish writes an exhaustive survey of the Asian market. “I went to at least ten Asian markets, and the wine selections sucked. I’d recommend BevMo.” Tim Fish also talks about his recent promotion to Senior Editor, “God knows, there’s nothing but fucking seniors around here. See my blind tasting report on Ensure.”

NAT DECANTS: Natalie MacLean talks about her about to be released book, Wine Grapes. “Jancis said it was OK to quote her as long as I gave proper attribution—she didn’t say how long the quote could be. It’s only 900 pages.” Nat also issues an apology for her poor review of a recent Dageneau Pouilly-Fumé, “I regret the low score, which was the unfortunate result of being just a tad drunk and mistakenly tasting my Clairol instead. The good news is, the Dageneau left my hair with a lovely sheen.”

WALL STREET JOURNAL: A rare look behind the scenes as Jay McInerney sits for the Master Sommelier exam. “I was doing quite well,” he writes, “until they asked me about Pinotage and I said it was the same as manscaping.” The service part of the exam proves particularly vexing for McInerney, “I asked the examiner what he was having for lunch, ‘Croque Monsieur,’ he said. So I replied, ‘Drop dead, Amigo.’ I think he took that the wrong way.” As it turns out, McInerney didn’t quite qualify for his M.S. “If he knew any less about wine,” the Master Sommeliers wrote, “he’d work for Bronco.” Lettie Teague defends the rising price of corks, “The stuff doesn’t grow on trees.”

ANTONIO GALLONI: The recent Wine Advocate defector writes about his new wine website’s pay model. “I envision one monthly fee for wine reviews and scores, a slightly higher fee for more personal access and wine advice from me, and the highest monthly fee for live Webcam shows where I mud wrestle nude with babes I meet after drinking all day.” First up, the 2010 Leroy Burgundies reviewed, and best two-out-of-three with Lalou Bize-Leroy. Don’t bet on the Italian.

1WINEDOODY: Joe Roberts makes his case to be Antonio Galloni’s replacement at the Wine Advocate. Comparing himself to Galloni, he notes, “I also speak four languages—English, Spanish, Ebonics and HTML. I’m also taking a Berlitz course in Tamil, which I thought was a feminine hygiene product.” About his qualifications to be the new Bordeaux wine critic, Joe points out, “I can name every classified growth in Bordeaux, I used to date the buyer for Costco, and, though I don’t have experience using a 100 Point Scale, I just bought a used one on Craigslist.” Sounds like Joe is a shoo-in.

WORLD OF FINE WINE: Jamie Goode reveals that the nature of how we spit wine is as revelatory as at whom we are expectorating it. Jancis Robinson MW writes about the latest research on grape DNA and the many unexpected discoveries. “As it turns out, if you get DNA from Mondeuse on your hands, you grow hair on your palms.” Hugh Johnson contemplates civilization without wine in “I’d Have Had to Sell My Eyebrows for Toupees.” Tim Atkin MW on why Central Otago should be in more crossword puzzles. Andrew Jeffords posits that Parker turning over the Wine Advocate to Lisa Perroti-Brown is equivalent to Caligula handing orgy duty to Margaret Thatcher. David Peppercorn MW revisits the 2000 vintage in Bordeaux and declares it the best vintage with three zeroes--and he's one of them. Allen Meadows on Domaine Ponsot wines from the 1920’s, “What struck me was how youthful they all tasted despite being under Stelvin.”

PALATE PRESS: You can count on Palate Press to prove time and time again that “Thought Piece” is, for them, an oxymoron. Meg Mark Maker’s has a long article about wine writing that is about wine writing and how it takes a writer to be one, but don’t let that stop you. Evan Dawson writes in his latest reflection, “It’s a wonder that any human being utters the words, ‘I’m bored.’” Have you read Palate Press, Evan?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

PALATE PRESS: The crack investigative team that brought Natalie MacLean to her well-worn knees does it again with Meg Houston Maker’s expose of Jenna Talia Baioppsi. According to Ms. Meg “Meetyour” Maker, Jenna Talia borrowed her World of Fine Wine™ muumuu without proper attribution, or undergarments. “It’s one thing,” writes Meg “Widow” Maker, “to borrow my property whole cloth under the Fair Use clause, but it’s another thing to claim it’s yours and that Jon Bonné lives underneath it and takes care of the bushes.” Jenna Talia responds, “I have no fucking idea what Meg is talking about. I’d sue her, but I feel sorry for her, she lives in a trailer behind Marvin Shanken, where there’s plenty of shade.” In another investigative report (oh, the gang at Palate Press is fired up—there hasn’t been this quality of investigative journalism since Geraldo opened Al Capone’s safe), Blinky Gray shines a light on the shameful Fantasy Wine Leagues where players draft undocumented migrant workers to their teams, track what vineyards they harvest, and win points by how the resulting wines are rated. “It’s despicable what these leagues are doing. It’s degrading to an uneducated, often illiterate, wildly exploited minority—so it’s basically like college football.”

JAMIE GOODE: The wine world’s Hobbit, Jamie Goode writes glowingly about Authentic Wines. “Here in the Shire, we like our daily tipple, but we insist it be authentic, and not from the Land of Mordor, which is what I call Yellow Tail. When Bilbo and Frodo and I hold a blind tasting, we can always tell the one that’s the most manipulated—it’s that frigging Bilbo stroking himself dreaming about Elves! We’re going to all chip in and get him sex with an Elvish impersonator.” It’s lovely to visit the mythical land of Authentic Wine with our diminutive host. In the wine world’s epic fight of Goode versus Evil, it’s nice to be rooting for Evil.

DECANTER: Hugh Johnson brings his insight to what the wine world can expect now that Robert Parker has surrendered editorial control of The Wine Advocate. “He’ll probably take up gardening and rate pansies,” writes Johnson. “I don’t think anything will really change very much. The people of the world will go on buying oceans of crap like they always have. Parker didn’t change that. He just got famous selling high end crap to score sheep, of which there are too flocking many. Now I like to think of him in retirement spreading manure around pansies instead.” That Hugh is wine’s poet. Elsewhere in the magazine, there’s a comparative tasting of English sparkling wines and Champagne that concludes, “Is there nothing we can’t beat the bloody Frogs at?” Oh, I don’t know, dentistry comes to mind.

WINE SPECTATOR: James Laube goes in search of “Great California Sangiovese.” Should be back in a year or so. Natalie MacLean joins the reviewing team and contributes her thoughts on writing tasting notes. “Once you get the hang of it, that cut and paste thing gets easy. I can do it with my drunky-ass goggles on. Copying from your neighbor, hell, it’s how Parker got through law school, and everybody loves him. Look for my reviews of the new 2010 Cabernets, which I think Tanzer is just about done writing.” And we answer the question on everyone’s mind, “What’s a Molesworth?” As it turns out, it depends on how smartly he invested. Tim Fish wonders how old Century Vines are.

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Jay McInerney attends a vertical tasting of Quinta do Noval’s “Nacional” in a post entitled “Tongs for the Memories.” “The grapes for ‘Nacional’ come from a part of the Noval vineyard where the vines are ungrafted, yet have never been touched by phylloxera. That plot is to vineyards what Charlie Sheen is to STD’s.” McInerney prefers the ’96 to the ’94 because, “I couldn’t tell the difference, but ’96 was the year I nailed Princess Margaret.” Lettie Teague reviews the latest wine fridge magnets.

WINE ENTHUSIAST: An issue devoted to the wines of South America, the cover story. “Tannat Decants,” is about the thrilling wines of Uruguay and how most of the grapes are harvested by migratory capybaras. “They’re plucky little rodents,” one winemaker declares, “and their teeth can actually stand up to Tannat, unlike humans.” A riveting article about Argentina exposes wineries that sell underperforming Malbec to local cowboys entitled, “Gaucho Marks.” And Roger Voss writes about Chilean wines, “How come when I write that Chile extends the length of South America, I get ads from Google for penis extensions?” Finally, a tasting of all the great wines of Brazil that takes three minutes, but afterward you look better without the curly hair at the edge of your bathing suit.

ROBERT PARKER ONLINE: Robert Parker unloads on his critics who say he’s been too liberal awarding 100 point scores. “You know how Presidents start handing out pardons to convicted criminals on their last days in office like a huckster handing out massage parlor brochures on the street in Las Vegas? It’s like that. I’m in my last days in office before the whole joint starts to turn an ugly shade of Lisa Perrotti-Brown, so I'm handing out 100's like a Singapore sex tourist. When that floor mannequin Laube decides to quit, he can hand out all the 100 point scores to Napa Valley prune juice he wants. The old moneyed farts who buy it need it to make them more regular anyway.” Don’t piss off The Lion in Winter.

Monday, December 3, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the Editors of HoseMaster of Wine

TERROIRIST: Finally, a wine club! And not just an ordinary wine club, but a wine club that selects wines and ships them to you. Why hasn’t anyone thought of this before now? You can join the Wine Club, writes David White, “and know that every wine you receive is guaranteed full of terroir! And plenty of pure, sweet alcohol, too.” Oh, you could pay more for these wines elsewhere, if they were actually good enough for Weygandt to get them placed on wine lists, but why would you when you’re paying plenty here? And each shipment comes with a brief tasting note that will tell you what you’re tasting, because you’re clearly incapable of it yourself, as well as recommended food pairings, many available at any 7-11 microwave. Savvy wine lovers are canceling their Rudy KurniaWine of the Month Club and signing up for Terrorist’s. Their motto, “If they weren’t delicious, would UPS deliver them?” ‘Nuff said.

WINE SPECTATOR: The current issue dedicated to the Pinot Noirs of the Williamette Valley, “OreGONZO!,” is packed with delectable reading. More than 275 Oregon wines are rated over 85 points, which is certainly helpful the same way it’s helpful to have 300 cable channels on your TV. Matt Kramer wonders if Oregon will ever merit the same passion as Burgundy. “I know there’s a BurgHound already, I’m just wondering if there will ever be a CoosHound.” Yeah, Matt, I know a couple. Harvey Steiman checks in on the vibrant Oregon restaurant scene. “What’s the hottest trend in Portland’s fine dining establishments? Lap dances! And plenty of them. What wine to order with your lap dances? Hell, something bone dry!” Harvey’s been drinking. Talia Baiocchi takes on “What to Wear to a Tasting Room,” and advises, “Dress like a Kardashian, but Drink like a Lohan.” Tim Fish on being lost in the Portland airport.

DECANTER: Andrew Jeffords revisits his European Wine Bloggers Speech where he declared “the wine writer, as we know it, is dead.” “I think it was misinterpreted,” Jeffords writes, “I was looking at Michael Broadbent at the time.” Michael Broadbent reviews the wine list in Hell, “It looked pretty much like the second issue of Alice Feiring’s newsletter.” Tom Stevenson has an interesting take on vintage Prosecco in a piece entitled, “I’d Rather Drink Serena Sutcliffe’s Depilatory.” And Hugh Johnson on why he loves rose gardens more than wine writing, “Not nearly as many pricks.”

STEVE! HEIMOFF: A rainy day has Steve wondering if his dog is corked. Like he’d know.

SAVEUR: The 2013 Saveur 100 List has a few odd items this year. Gael Greene writes about collecting toothpicks made from the remains of famous food luminaries. “After a fine roast chicken on the weekend, I love to remove what remains between my teeth with a Julia Child pick—it’s my own version of Saturday Night Femur.” Another entry on the list is “Natural Wines Imported That Burn Ungodly Amounts of Fossil Fuel.” Finally, I have no idea how this got on the list, “Sesame Street’s New ‘Tickle Me, Prostate’ Doll."

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Jay McInerney visits with the new wave of young California winemakers, not one of whom knows who the fuck he is. In another article, Jay is invited to a Henri Jayer vertical at Lady GaGa’s house. “How does one describe the ’85 Cros Parantoux,” writes McInerney, in his usual passionate and self-entitled voice, “except to say it tasted like marrying money? If you ever get the chance, try it.” As for GaGa, “I think she was dressed as a dirty Burgundian wine cave.” Lettie Teague weighs in on natural wines, “They smell bad, like hippies.”

PALATE PRESS:  For those of you who can’t get enough of vapid wine articles, yet want to help Save the Planet by not buying glossy, oversized lifestyle magazines (how many trees have died to glorify Marvin Shanken?—remember, with magazines, the bigger the page, the smaller the intellect), there’s always Palate Press! Blinky Gray writes about his recent junket to Turkey, alongside the likes of Alder Yarrow. Turkey, notorious for imprisoning journalists, could not have been safer for them. And Meg Houston Maker explains what wines go best with the stuff you eat in the dark and hope nobody smells on your breath.

Monday, November 5, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine 

WINE SPECTATOR: It’s the much-anticipated Top 100 Wines issue for 2012. And for the first time ever, all 100 wines are from the 2009 Bordeaux vintage. “Hey, the 2012’s will suck from there so, God knows, they could use the help,” writes the magazine’s publisher, Marvin Shanken. James Laube has a rebuttal post, which had to hurt going in, and he also spends his column offering up the 10 Best Things he put in his mouth this year. Write your own joke. Matt Kramer reflects on the meaning of being the smartest wine writer to ever live, and decides it’s his humility that sets him apart. That, and the array of solar panels installed above his eyebrows. And don’t miss Talia Baiocchi’s new blog post in which she realizes old, fat, rich white guys can, in fact, buy young white women and make them do what they want. Tim Fish wonders where fruit flies live.

THE FEIRING LINE: The premiere issue of Ms. Feiring’s independent newsletter, subtitled “The Real Wine Newsletter” (using “real” in the exact same sense as “Real Housewives of New Jersey”), specializes in “honest viticulture and minimal intervention wines.” As it turns out, “minimal intervention wines” are not what you drink while watching Kitty Genovese get murdered. Nope, Ms. Feiring explains, “minimal intervention wines are wines the winemaker manipulates as little as possible,” preferring, instead, to spend his time manipulating admiring, starry-eyed wine writers. No one knows what “honest viticulture” means.

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Lettie Teague has a fascinating column about South Africa and all the innovations in winemaking coming from that country. “California wineries could learn a valuable lesson from their South African counterparts and begin harvest in February,” she notes. “It’s also a lot easier to find seasonal help that time of year. And the lions aren’t as active.” Jay McInerney finds that tasting white wines makes him think of female breasts. “Is it just me, or does everyone think that California Chardonnays have humongous hooters? Whereas, say, a good German Riesling has those little girl perky tits that will age nicely and are just a touch sweet. Champagne has perfect breasts, though Dom’s are fake.” When it comes to red wine, McInerney writes, “I think of testicles. And, when it comes right down to it, most of us would rather have balls in our mouths.”

PALATE PRESS: Discerning readers have discovered that Palate Press isn’t just a place for industrial wines to be reviewed by simpletons. A quick visit yields an informative article on pruning shears, tracing them back to their roots in the bris ceremony. (Note to PP: don’t use “root” and “bris” in the same sentence.) There’s also an opinion piece by Meg Housonfirst Maker about Wine Spectator. “I don’t understand why they hired that Talia Be-ach and left me in this Godforsaken virtual hellhole.” She makes a good point. “Talia may be the voice of her generation, but I’m the snore.” W. Blinky Gray wonders why wines that are lower in alcohol aren’t cheaper than other wines, “We buy wine to get drunk, so less alcohol should be less expensive. It just makes sense. Wineries should get on the bandwagon and lower both.” Refreshing to read someone with years of experience who doesn’t actually seem like it.

WINE JULIA: Julia won Best New Wine Blog at this year’s Wine Blog Awards, and a visit shows why. There’s an in-depth report on Oregon’s 2012 Harvest, a spirited discussion of Oregon terroir, and fantastic tasting notes on hundreds of Oregon new releases. OK, no there’s not. There’s notes about free wines she received, free junkets she participated in, and free tastings she got invited to. So, yeah, they got it right, she’s a wine blogger.

WINE ENTHUSIAST: Don’t miss Wine Enthusiast’s 2012 lists of Top 100 Cellar Selections, Top 50 Spirits, Top 25 Beers, Top 10 Cheapass Moscatos, Top 7 Cocktails for Pukeathons, Top 5 Sommeliers with Harelips, and Top 3 Wine Magazines with Inflated Scores. Steve Heimoff pays a visit to the Sta. Rita Hills appellation only to discover, to his dismay, that Sta. Rita isn’t short for Strawberry Margarita. Paul Gregutt walks in the footsteps of Lewis and Clark and finds that even then tasting room employees were surly. “They even carded Sacajawea.” Roger Voss on the back roads of the Languedoc, “Look at all the trees…!”

ON THE WINE TRAIL IN ITALY: Alfonso Cevola with a haunting piece about how much in common Texas and Italy have. “My native Italy, land of my ancestors, the womb I gwew up in, is, after all, shaped like the iconic footwear of my adopted home Texas—a boot. As I worship my beloved Italy, am I not just another Texas bootlicker?” Alfonso makes an interesting observation about the two cuisines as well. “Where Italy has garlic, Texas has iced tea.” As usual, Alfonso leaves you wondering if there’s a plate in his head that sets off airport security alarms On the Wine Trail in Italy.

Monday, October 1, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

WINE AND SPIRITS: Joshua Greene pens an editorial about the new tasting policy at Wine and Spirits. “We don’t just intend to give our readers the most accurate scores, we intend to give them the highest scores as well. We’re the #1 publication when it comes to shelf talkers! Suck it, Connoisseurs’ Guide.” As for tasting blind, “It’s an enormous waste of precious natural resources to put each wine into a bag—and, besides, we’ve found that is usually soaks through the bag and leaks like a bastard.” Wine and Spirits is currently ranked 15th in wine magazine newsstand sales, right behind Yeast Infection Weekly. Also, check out the interesting piece about Patrick Comiskey’s tongue map. Turns out it’s not exclusively located between his own cheeks.

1WINEDUDE: Golly, there’s just so much to read over at 1WineDude. There’s the Weekly Wine Quiz—this week’s puzzler is “What’s the difference between Appellation and Appalachian?” Easy, Joe, one’s in wine, the other’s inbred. And you won’t want to go shopping for wine without Joe’s brief and essentially useless Tweets about wines he’s recently tasted. My pick this week is Joe’s review of 2010 Coppola “Director’s Cut” Zinfandel, “Berried in cement shoes, I just love the smell of olive--nay, palm--in the morning. B+” Yeah, we don't get it either. Finally, follow the link to Joe’s latest, oh-so-hip post for, “Riedel’s new Bodily Orifice™ Tasting Glasses.”

WINE SPECTATOR: James Laube writes about his seven favorite ways to taste wine, and why Zin is best rectally. “For one thing, they just usually don’t have those damned wax seals like expensive Cabernet often does. Those things chap.” Bruce Sanderson on the newest winegrowing region in Italy, Ciro! “I didn’t even know they made wine down there. I thought Gaglioppo was one of the Marx Brothers. Hey, it’s new to me!” And don’t miss Tim Fish’s touching post about how petting winery doggies helps him sleep.

WALL STREET JOURNAL: What’s the biggest problem for our wealthiest wine connoisseurs? No, it’s not finding Chinese coolies to dig an authentic wine cave, you can find them on any local college campus. Rather, Jay McInerney writes, “it’s how lousy your First Growth Bordeaux taste at 25,000 feet.” It’s the heartbreak of owning your own luxury jet and not being able to drink your best wines in flight. “Cabin pressure can make ’59 Margaux taste like 59-year-old Margaux Hemingway—tough and leathery.” It’s the story of an unheralded American tragedy, “Sober at the Mile High Club.” McInerney interviews a Wall Street tycoon who tried to have his jet pressurized to sea level readings only to have his hair plugs launched to the Space Shuttle. Lettie Teague on the romance of wines wrapped in tissue.

DECANTER: Michael Broadbent opines that 80% of the wines in the auction market are frauds, “Which is considerably lower than the percentage of MS’s who are.” Broadbent goes on to offer tips on how to spot fraudulent offerings. “Genuine cases of 1982 Bordeaux did not come with free gum.” Andrew Jeffords bemoans the lack of civility on the Internet in a piece entitled, “Assholes with Computers.” Tom Stevenson takes a look at the disastrous 2012 vintage in Champagne, noting that, “the vineyards were devastated by hailstones the size of the bubbles in Mumm’s Cordon Rouge.”

FERMENTATION: Amazon is about to begin selling wine, and Tom Wark has a few thoughts. “First of all,” he notes, “it’s against federal law to have a smiley logo on a box with alcohol in it. So I’m guessing they’ll ship the wine boxes upside down.” Wark also reflects on whether Amazon will have Customer Reviews of wines. “Am I ever going to buy a bottle of wine based on the opinion of someone I don’t know and who has no background or knowledge about wine? That’s stupid. We have bloggers for that.” And he asks the provocative question, “Will Amazon do for wine what phones did for Angry Birds?” Hard to find this kind of insight outside of “Parade” magazine.

WINE ENTHUSIAST: You won’t want to miss the surprising winners of Wine Enthusiast’s Wine Star Awards. The Lifetime Achievement Award goes to Pancho Campo who “graciously and unceremoniously managed to wring Dr. Jay Miller’s neck, though no one had seen it for several years, while simultaneously disgracing M.W.’s everywhere. Damn, if only he’d gone to Penn State too.” The new category Sommelier of the Year ended without a winner. “We just couldn’t find them.” And in a major upset, over the objections of critic Virginie Boone, who denied there was a loophole in the category’s rules, Wine Region of the Year went to Sta. Rita Hills. Sorry, but, Yes, Virginie, there is a Sta. clause.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

WINE SPECTATOR:  Matt Kramer insightfully equates what he does for Wine Spectator with blogging in a column entitled, “Phoning It In.” “I, basically, rehash thoughts I’ve expressed over the years, make sure and format it for a lot of paragraphs to fill my allotted space, and, BANG, hit Publish. Only I get paid! And I have the next four years of columns already recycled. Truth be known, I invented blogging.”  James Laube writes a touching confessional about his secret addiction to sulfites. “I knew I was in trouble,” he writes, “when I snorted them from Helen Turley’s navel.” Tim Fish ponders how twelve bottles became a case.

JAMIE GOODE:  On being notified that his blog had won the essentially worthless Wine Blog Award for Best Overall Wine Blog, Jamie’s reaction is clear. “I’m not a bloody blogger.” Goode asserts that he is, in fact, an “authentic” wine blogger. “The only bloggers worth reading are authentic bloggers. Too many people waste their time on bloggers who are clearly manipulated and unnatural, and many of whom seem to be at the keyboard manipulating themselves.” Now there’s an idea.

WALL STREET JOURNAL:  A fascinating article by Jay McInerney about the current fad among very wealthy people to compete for who has the biggest collection of fraudulent wines. “Ever since the Dr. Conti scandal revealed that many very wealthy collectors had cellars full of counterfeit bottles, there’s been a competition to see who has the most. You have to remember, these are people who celebrate hair plugs and fake tits.” At a recent vertical tasting of every vintage of Chateau Petrus at Warren Buffett’s house, McInerney tastes the “greatest wine of my life”—the ’47 Petrus, which turns out to be ’78 Silver Oak blended with Red Bull. “It embarrassed the ’37 La Landonne.” Lettie Teague waxes poetic about whole cluster press. “They published my first book.”

FERMENTATION:  Tom Wark writes a long, improvised, vaguely factual post about what the wine industry needs to turn itself around in a sluggish economy. “1. Don’t look back, look forward. Or, at the very least, walk backwards and look over your shoulder. 2. Be a visionary. The greatest names in wine were visionaries You should be one. Where are the new visionaries coming from? I’d say the new visionaries are already here, but we can’t see them. Unless you focus just to the right of one and then you can see one, like he’s a star, or something dead on your windshield. 3. Mount a campaign against the Three Tier System and then sell wine by advertising on my blog. It’s only by implementing these three points that the wine business will recover.”  

WINE ENTHUSIAST: Steve Heimoff has a long piece about “Where Winemakers Get Their Haircuts.” “At least in St. Helena,” he writes, “it’s all about Jim Barbour.” He also observes, “If you swept up all the clippings from a single month from the Sonoma barbers most often patronized by our finest winemakers, why, you could have a shirt just like the one I’m wearing now.” Paul Gregutt interviews Washington winemakers about the latest craze—winery ferrets. One winemaker remarks, “They’re small and furry, like Jon Bonné.” Paul wanders out of his territory to visit the furry critter at Buehler Vineyards in Napa Valley, only, as it turns out, it’s Buehler’s Ferret’s Day Off. Roger Voss travels to the Jura and forgets why he went there.

ON THE WINE TRAIL IN ITALY:  Alfonso Cevola chides young sommeliers who “only buy wines that will sell, a shortsighted strategy that foolishly leaves out most of my portfolio.” He remembers a time, early in his career, when he was asked if he wanted Vietti. “Only alla Bolognese,” he responds. And somehow Dante is involved, it’s pretty hard to figure out how.

BON APPETIT: The annual Thanksgiving issue focuses on the wines of Turkey. “What could be more engaging than serving a bottle of vintage Öküzgözü? Though, in a pinch, you could substitute Robitussin. We’re pretty sure the Pilgrims drank Musket-det.” Also, a stunning seven-page pictorial on how to open a wine bottle with simple household objects—a plunger, a spatula or your grandparent with dementia. Finally, a Q and A with Angela Lansbury, as hip as Bon Appetit gets, on how to win a Tony award pissed on Cribari.

CONNOISSEURS’ GUIDE:  Charlie Olken writes about how much he likes Steve Heimoff’s new winemaker hair shirt. “Do they make one where the sleeves have Puffs?” Stephen Eliot explains blind tasting and why they use Connoisseurs’ Guide Dogs.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

DECANTER: The magazine’s recent decision to use the 100 Point Scale when reviewing wines is graciously explained in a post entitled, “Taking it Up the Arse From Parker.” In the same issue, Gerald Asher explores the history of orange wines in “We Love the Smell of Arse in the Morning.” Asher explains the role of Cistercian monks in the creation of orange wines, noting that the aromas “reminded them of their early days in the church being buggered, a term that can be applied to those who purchase today’s orange wines.”

STEVE!: Nothing that happens in Oakland escapes Steve Heimoff’s attention, and in a recent post he writes about the resurgence of the Oakland A’s and how it relates to wine. “With wine, as with baseball, it doesn’t matter how big your budget is,” he writes in his signature haven’t-really-thought-it-through style, “we all come to play with our own balls.” The analogy loses some steam, though, when he begins to talk about being successful with men in scoring position.

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Jay McInerney writes a compelling and compassionate article “What the Poor People Are Drinking” in which he blind tastes wines under $40. “I felt so dirty,” he writes, “and so grateful that no one could see the labels of what was inside those brown bags; and yet now I understand the shame the average working man feels having to serve these wines to family and friends. I can’t get the taste of failure out of my mouth.” Lettie Teague has an interesting article on coasters.

1WINEDOODY: In his most fascinating video post yet, Joe Roberts uses Rock’em Sock’em Robots to explain the effects of high alcohol in wines, which he seems to be suffering from in the video. The effect is also aptly demonstrated when he drops his trousers, bends over, and reTweets.

WINE SPECTATOR: James Laube writes a fascinating editorial about “Personality in Wine” and how he’s never had any. The editors look at “Ten Virginia Wineries to Watch” and come up with three. Matt Kramer wonders at the recent California foie gras ban and fears that the same lawmakers will ban Wine Spectator for “similarly shoving absolute crap down people’s throats for years.” Tim Fish on the wine industry’s most important discovery--cardboard.

FOODANDWINE: Wine editor Ray Isle on why supermarket wines are best recommended by supermarket magazines. Turns out it’s like owning a pub near the circus—“if you set the bar too high, it offends the midgets.” Cleanup on Isle four, please. And the results of a Reader Survey answered by their subscriber.

SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE: Jon Bonne remarks on the newest trend in San Francisco restaurants, Transgender Sommeliers. “They seem to have a special affinity for orange wines,” he writes. Also, the Chronicle Tasting Panel sorts through the current trend of lower alcohol in wine, finding that, “not only do the wines express their terroir more intensely, you can refill your car battery with the leftovers.”

VORNOGRAPHY:  Alder makes the case for his inclusion in the Vintners Hall of Fame. “Please make sure and cast your ballots for whomever you think deserves the honor, Robert Parker or some damn Mirassou or other, but if you can find it in your heart, I’d appreciate a write-in vote. I’ll be there some day anyway, I’d just like to enjoy the honor sooner rather than later. I’m the greatest living wine blogger, and a gift to the wine industry.” Gerald Asher responds, “AAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!! My eyes, my eyes, I’m struck blind!”

WINE AND SPIRITS: Joshua Greene uncovers the allure of Greek wines, “although” he writes, “alcohol was banned in my college fraternity.” Patrick Comiskey sees the future of Washington wines, and it is Lemberger. “It’s rough, it’s harsh, it’s graceless, it’s everything I like in wine. A dead ringer for its cousin Danberger.”

Monday, July 9, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

1WINEDOODY: The Dude offers another wine quiz, this time asking readers to identify the three major causes of wine headaches (Hint: Histamines, drinking too much, and opening Champagne with your teeth). In a video post, the Dude lectures other bloggers about not being douches, which is what a douche would do. And don’t miss his account of his visit to Harlan Estate where he and Paul Roberts hide behind a Salmanazar.

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Jay McInerney talks about a new trend in wine he’s excited about--drinking it out of the skulls of poor people. Tasted blind against the same 1990 Burgundy out of Riedel crystal stemware, he prefers the beggar’s coconut, saying, “…it was deeply satisfying knowing this was a vessel that had never seen Burgundy, not to mention First Class on Singapore Airlines.” As an added bonus, he reminds us, wine skulls are dishwasher safe. Lettie Teague discovers Wine Away.

WORLD OF FINE WINE: Jancis Robinson, MW tastes the latest crop of orange wines and wishes there’d been a frost in the damned groves. Andrew Jefford says that it’s time we get back to appreciating wine for it’s true purpose, getting pissed and waving our bangers at the Buckingham Palace guards. Hugh Johnson weighs in on something, it’s not clear what, but it seems important. Tom Stevenson conducts a vertical tasting of Veuve Clicquot and suggests it might be useful for cooling off dressage horses at the upcoming London Olympics.

DR. VINO: As usual, more links than Jimmy Dean’s funeral buffet. Also, details about Robert Parker’s asking Jay Miller to return and review wines from Mexican drug cartels. And news that Chateau D’Yquem sells a bottle of Semillon for more than $500!

WINE SPECTATOR: Matt Kramer says that it’s time we get back to appreciating wine for it’s true purpose, getting hammered and waving our kielbasas at airport security. James Laube suggests his favorite reds for kielbasa. Harvey Steiman rates hotel honor bars in his Dora the Explorer pajamas. Tim Fish writes about the joy of cork trivets.

STEVE!: STEVE! debunks Biodynamics, calling it pseudoscience based on mysticism and faith. He goes on to rate 50 new California Cabernets on the 100 point scale, yet another pseudoscience based on mysticism and faith.

PALATE PRESS: Don’t miss the fascinating article on the newest trend in restaurant wine lists—placing the iPad wine list on the chair and having the customer butt-pick his wine, written by one of Palate Press’ regular buttpickers. A sexy look at the reproductive cycle of grapes, glassy-winged sharpshooters, barn cats and Ben Flajnik by Meg Houston Maker. Not sure who wrote it. And reviews of dozens of wines that will make you lose the will to live.

WINE ENTHUSIAST: Publisher Adam Strum answers his most frequently asked question, “What the hell is up with my hair?” A year-long investigation by Virginie Boone reveals that the 100-year-old vines in Lodi are actually only 25 years old but look so ancient because of the fucking heat. And Paul Gregutt introduces us to Oregon’s best-kept secret—most of the Pinot Noir vineyards are actually Zweigelt.

SERMONTATION: Tom Wark weighs in on the minerality debate with his opinion that, “…wines don’t taste like minerals, stupid, those are your fillings.” He also congratulates the winners of the 2012 Wine Blog Awards, somehow knowing who they are already. And don’t miss his rant about how electing a Mormon President will be bad for the wine industry unless he picks a drunk as a running mate, but will Limbaugh accept?

ON AND ON AND ON AND ON AND ON THE WINE TRAIL IN ITALY: Alfonso Cevola is the master of nostalgia, and in his current post he takes us back to how hard it was to sell wine when he first got into the business, before the invention of shoes.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

EATER: Talia Baiocchi takes another “hyperfresh” look at innovative wine lists around the country. With a writing style far more hyper than fresh, Talia includes the wine list at New York’s Kentucky Fried Foie Gras, where the sommelier was force-fed through a tube, and whose list is exclusively dessert wines and Beano-infused spirits. It’s worth a gander. As usual, Talia also interviews the most arrogant sommeliers she can find on topics of little interest to anyone.

SAVEUR: A fascinating article on the trendiest wine region invading restaurants, the Jura. Poised to replace the much-reviled Austrian wine Grüner Veltliner, the wines of the Jura are the current darling of sommeliers eager to impress their peers with their knowledge of obscure wines consumers have no desire to taste. The article gives a brief background of the region’s most important grape Savagnin, and explains why it is particularly suited to produce wines of such profound indifference. Written in the usual overblown prose that has made Saveur a must-read for those suffering from eating disorders.

STEVE HEIMOFF: Lots of interesting topics on Steve Heimoff’s eponymous blog this week. First, Steve mourns the passing of the Hospice du Rhone in a post entitled “I Interviewed Everyone of Any Importance in My Book, Now in Paperback.” An earlier post redefines great wine writing, tracing a line from Saintsbury (“I rated their 09 Pinot Noir 88 points) through Leon Ames (“loved him with Fess Parker in ‘Daniel Boone’”) and ending with Steve Heimoff in a post entitled, “I, Ames, to Please Buy My Classic Book, now in Paperback.” And you won’t want to miss Steve’s post in which he waxes philosophical, and Brazilian, about the importance of tight shorts in winemaking entitled,
“Winemakers Go Commando in My Newest Book, Now Available, And It’s Important.”

MUTINEER MAGAZINE: OK, no, you’re right, this is not What We’re Reading. It’s just Wine X written for smaller attention spans. What was I saying?

WINE SPECTATOR: A lively profile of Wine Spectator’s Man of the Year, Dr. Jay Miller. James Laube on the 2009 vintage remarks, “It falls somewhere between the 2008 and 2010 vintages, especially around December.” Matt Kramer on why he tastes wines when he already knows whether he likes them or not before he pulls the corks. And Tim Fish on features writing in, “Why Delving Beneath the Surface is Overrated.”

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Jay McInerney spends an evening talking wine and sex with Dr. Ruth Westheimer. As it turns out, he knows just as little about sex, and he vows to make Dr. Ruth his bride No. 5. He says her new wine is, “…just like her, simple and easy, something you take to bed with you when your self-awareness that you’re a fraud kicks in and you don’t want to be alone.” Ooooh, can that boy write. Also, Lettie Teague on some subject, I forget what it is, maybe wines some movie star drinks, I don’t know, I can never remember anything she says after she says it.

PALATE PRESS: In a world of wine blog flavors, Palate Press is vanilla. Here’s the kind of challenging reading usually only found wrapped around Bazooka gum. But make sure and read Meg Houston “We Have a Problem” Maker’s post on how writing about wine is a matter of words, most of them just there to up the word count. W. Blinky Gray on how he’s foreseen every trend in the wine business over the past ten years, yet still doesn’t get enough credit, though it may just be that everyone’s jealous, a post certain to attract the attention of the Wine Blog Awards since he nominated it. And, finally, a powerful post on the purpose of Palate Press entitled “Submit Samples.”

VORNOGRAPHY: Alderpated concludes his photographic essay series illustrating common aromas found in wines with his favorite, “Lots of Expensive New Oak.” He also tastes 14,000 wines from the 2009 vintage of Bordeaux while visiting there for a weekend. 12,368 rate “About 9.5 to 10.0.” On that basis, Yarrowminded rates the vintage “8.5 to 9.0” Also, don’t miss his opinion piece, “If I don’t taste it, it’s not there.” Is the same true if no one reads it?

SERMONTATION: Tom Wark on his acceptance speech for the Best Wine Blog Award 2012, and why Portland should be honored to be hosting the Wine Bloggers Conference (“Consider this: Those 500 Wine Bloggers have nearly the IQ of the Algonquin Round Table. Not the members of the Round Table, the actual table.”)

Thursday, May 3, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

DR. VINO:  Check out this week’s impossible food-wine pairing—crow! Dr. Vino eats a lot of that, and wonders what wine would best accompany it. First guy to say Ravenswood becomes the next impossible food-wine pairing—human prairie oysters. Pretty sure Leslie Sbrocco knows what pairs with those pairs. In another post, Dr. Vino investigates wine labels. “They just don’t come off in hot water any more. Can the glue be good for the environment? Are our children being poisoned by big corporate wineries?
Can I drum up another fake controversy?” If you can’t, who can?

WINE ENTHUSIAST:  Paul Gregutt writes about the unheralded star of Washington wines—Paul Gregutt. Steve Heimoff has an interesting feature on the “Hairiest Winemakers in California” and bemoans the fact that not enough of them are men. Virginie Boone talks to readers about the importance of vineyards in “Oooh, They’re So Pretty.” And Roger Voss wanders around the Loire Valley because he’s too proud to ask for directions.

CONNOISSEURS’ GUIDE: Editor Charles Olken predicts what’s ahead in wine in the coming year. “More wineries will send me samples, sommeliers will be headed for the unemployment line, and Jon Bonné will marry a chimpanzee.” Co-editor Stephen Eliot writes a haunting piece that wonders why Charlie is planning to move the apostrophe back a space.

WALL STREET JOURNAL:  Jay McInerney is invited to a hundred-year vertical of Chateau d’Yquem by Justin Bieber and wonders which one is sweeter in the mouth. And don’t miss Lettie Teague’s assessment of the 2009 vintage in Bordeaux, “Great vintage, but I prefer Cabernet.”

PALATE PRESS:  Palate Press is the “My Weekly Reader” for wine bloggers. Check out the fascinating feature on Malbec in “How Many Words Can You Make from ‘Malbec?’” Clam…Came…Blame…Beam…LAME… In “Wine Conversations,” there’s an interview with the Robert Mondavi winery dog, Poopus One, that will leave you howling. And, finally, the ultimate guide to being a successful wine blog, “Write Really Fast.”

eROBERT PARKER:  The investigative report is in, and Dr. of Love Jay Miller is exonerated. Yes, some money changed hands, Robert Parker writes, but Miller was inflating scores long before that; and Spanish wineries weren’t promised access to Miller, they were only promised access to Miller LITES! Simple mix-up it only takes 3000 pages to explain. And Antonio Galloni talks about dumping on Parker’s California cult wines and creating his own. “I don’t hand out 100 point scores like they’re condoms in Africa. When I hand out 100 point scores they mean something. Power. I’m the new Pope, Baby! I speak for God.”

WINE SPECTATOR:  “Wines are tasted completely blind when reviewed by Wine Spectator critics,” says publisher Marvin Shanken in a hard-hitting editorial, “it’s those damned ad sales people that screw with the scores.” The new Grand Awards for restaurant wine lists are announced—the crappy one at Greystone is nowhere to be seen. Tim Fish on his love affair with winery logo polo shirts.

NEW YORK TIMES:  The New York Times tasting panel rates Chinese wines in honor of Jeremy Lin. The result? Read “Knicks and Nix—both Overrated.” Eric Asimov visits rich people that own wineries. “They just smell better.”

PLAYBOY:  Wine columnist for 1WineDoody lists his favorite jug wines. 

Monday, March 26, 2012

What We're Reading

Compiled by the editors of HoseMaster of Wine

STEVE!: A fascinating look at how a working critic manages to have spotless integrity in a world of wine reviewing corruption. STEVE! wonders why he doesn’t have more fame and influence arguing that, “while there are, understandably, differences in opinions about the same wine, only my scores come from a deep, dark, needy place.”

WINE SPECTATOR ONLINE: A wealth of interesting posts this week. James Laube relates the country’s raging contraception debate to the cork controversy in a column titled, “Just Pull the Damned Thing Out.” Matt Kramer explains the difference between white Burgundy and red Burgundy, and, in so doing, sets a Wine Spectator record for most words used in stating the obvious, a record previously held by everyone on the editorial staff. And, finally, Tim Fish discovers the wonders of tasting room crackers.

SAMANTHA SAMS CLUBAGE: Samantha’s latest post explores just why French wines are better than any other goddam wines. It has something to do with the tingling of the little hairs on her girlie parts. As good an explanation of terroir as I’ve ever read ensues, with Samantha taking the position that “terroir is like Dave Mathews--hard to explain, but I know it when I taste it.” But she really gets going with her tribute to what Grower Champagnes do to her “bits.” “I’ve got mousse in my caboose,” she begins, “ and en tirage in my garage.” Yahoo! I love when she gets down and dirty. This girl writes like a dream, a wet one.

DINER’S JOURNAL: Eric Asimov, writing under his pseudonym Eric Asimov, talks about the Natural Wines being produced in Arbois, which he tasted while on leave for Jura duty. “Natural wines,” he states in his low-key authoritarian voice, “seem to express more about the people advocating them than anything else—that they are seriously flawed.”

SERMONTATION: Tom Wark invented wine blogging, which is why he is particularly reviled. Today’s post is about the Constitution and Tasting Fees. Tom argues persuasively that our Forefathers expressly forbade Tasting Room Fees under the Eighth Amendment which expressly says, “…nor excessive fines imposed…” Oooh, he’s got you there, tasting room scum! Tom suggests that consumers refuse to pay tasting room fees, and if they run into problems not to forget their Second Amendment right to bear arms. Tom’s blog makes one wish there wasn’t a First Amendment.

FOOD AND WINE: More on the mysteries of pairing wine and food from the magazine that is completely baffled by it. “Cabernet with Eggs” is a delightful article that argues the perfect match with what comes out of a chicken’s cloaca is full-bodied Cabernet, and offers a recipe for Egg Foo Young Red Wine. In the penetrating “Trust Your Palate,” Wine Editor Ray Isle says that the trick to matching food and wine is to have faith in your own taste. A convincing argument for canceling your subscription.

ON AND ON AND ON AND ON AND ON THE WINE TRAIL IN ITALY: Alfonso transports us to another time and place with his blog—I think it’s Hooterville circa 1960.  Today’s post, “Pasta My Prime,” is a gorgeous lamentation about aging and some other stuff I couldn’t make heads or tails of. The words flow like a busted sewage main, and leave you thinking, Was that a brilliant post, or an eye chart?

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Jay McInerney writes for the 1%--that is, the 1% who are happy he replaced John and Dottie. His column this week focuses on his visit to Sting’s winery in Italy, where he practices Tantric sex with himself. Meanwhile, Lettie Teague has one more retraction to make about yet another mistake in her column, “I regret that I mistakenly wrote that ‘Romanee-Conti’ referenced a gypsy whore.”

1WINEDOODY: In today’s post, Doody makes the case for Portuguese white wines. Entitled, “Who You Callin’ Vin, Ho?,” in Doody’s signature Look at Me I’m Hip style, he argues that Vinho Verde belongs at your table, especially since he had to travel all the way to f***ing Portugal, on their escudo, to teach you this. It’s quite a convincing romp, and, best of all, we can look forward to his Tweets about Vinho Verde this coming weekend! Example: “This 2008 Vinho Verde makes me want to rush to the airport and have my junk touched! A+”

VORNOGRAPHY: Alder talks about the rash of counterfeit wines on the auction circuit and offers his services pro bono heado. “Line up those 50,000 bottles of old wine from that Rudy Dude’s cellar, give me 36 hours, I'll taste them all and I’ll tell you which ones are fakes. And, as a bonus, I’ll post some spectacular photos, mostly of kitties.” Hard to argue with a guy who definitely knows about fake.