james laube

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Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

A Teachable Moment in Aging Wine: 1970s Kongsgaard Cabernets

Two of John Kongsgaard's oldest wines proved nimble and fascinating—special wines that were nevertheless well past their prime

Posted: February 5, 2014  By James Laube

There's a downside to aging wines too long. That might seem obvious, but few wine lovers take that into consideration when purchasing wines to lay down in the cellar for a while.

In a conversation and tasting with John Kongsgaard the other day, we talked about terroir, to what extent it exists (and can be identified), at what age it might be most readily identified in a wine and, ultimately, that with enough age, all wines lose their terroir. They become old wines inseparable from one another.

Illustrating this point, Kongsgaard poured two Cabernets that he made early on his career, as a 26-year-old home winemaker in the 1970s with his father, Thomas, in Napa.

News & Features  :  Tasting Highlights

8 Enticing Napa Cabernets

New reviews of California reds from the 2010 vintage

Posted: February 3, 2014  By James Laube

News & Features  :  News

California Wineries Confront Historic Drought

With no rain in sight, reservoirs are empty and vintners fear a small crop even before the vines wake up

Posted: January 21, 2014  By James Laube, Tim Fish

Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

Tainted Cork Woes

Corks are better than they used to be, but they'll never be perfect

Posted: January 17, 2014  By James Laube

Wine Spectator senior editor James Laube reports his latest findings on the percentage of corked and tainted California wines that were tasted in Wine Spectator's tasting room in 2013. Cork taint frequency was up just a tick last year to a 4.26 percent failure rate.

News & Features  :  Tasting Highlights

10 Striking Napa Cabernets

New reviews of Cabernet Sauvignon from the 2009 and 2010 vintages

Posted: January 13, 2014  By James Laube

Dec. 31, 2013 Issue  :  Columns

A Test of Terroir

Posted: December 31, 2013  By James Laube

News & Features  :  Wine Tips

Wine Tip: New Book Reviews

Wine Spectator editors weigh in on new titles

Posted: December 23, 2013  By Harvey Steiman, MaryAnn Worobiec, James Laube, James Molesworth

Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

Sizing Up Bottle Sizes

Testing the Big Bottle Theory with five sizes of Chateau St. Jean Cinq Cépages 1995

Posted: December 19, 2013  By James Laube

Bottle size matters when it comes to wine, but maybe not as much as you might think. That's important to understand if you own larger-format bottles, or are considering buying some.

Conventional wisdom is that smaller bottles age faster than larger ones because smaller bottles have a smaller ratio of wine volume to oxygen, of which there is about the same amount in all bottle formats. That anecdotal thinking has been passed along for decades, becoming one of winedom's golden rules. Actually testing the theory is more difficult.

News & Features  :  Tasting Highlights

12 Standout California Reds

New reviews of Rhône-style offerings from Santa Barbara and Paso Robles

Posted: December 16, 2013  By James Laube

Dec. 15, 2013 Issue  :  Columns

Gridiron Vintner's Drive for Respect

Posted: December 15, 2013  By James Laube

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