mitch frank

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Dec. 15, 2012 Issue  :  Features

Noblesse Oblige

Francesco Ricasoli gave up a career in photography to save his family’s historic Chianti estate

Posted: December 15, 2012  By Mitch Frank

Nov. 30, 2012 Issue  :  Features

The Tao of Miami Beach

South Florida's playground balances cosmopolitan cuisine with casual dining

Posted: November 30, 2012  By Mitch Frank

Nov. 30, 2012 Issue  :  Features

Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s Driving Force

Consultant Philippe Cambie pushes himself to the edge to make outstanding wine

Posted: November 30, 2012  By Mitch Frank

Blogs  :  Mixed Case: Opinion and Advice

Sometimes You Need a Hired Gun

Winemaking consultants are neither mercenaries nor miracle workers

Posted: November 29, 2012  By Mitch Frank

Is it possible to make 62 different wines, from different vineyards, and have each one taste not just outstanding but also distinctive?

Philippe Cambie is the top winemaking consultant in Châteauneuf-du-Pape—he works for 25 wineries in the appellation. He also has 37 other clients, mostly in the Southern Rhône Valley, but also in the Languedoc (where he grew up), Provence, Corsica, Spain and even Macedonia. His wines routinely score outstanding and classic in Wine Spectator's blind tastings. I profiled Cambie in our Nov. 30 issue and found him to be a warm, friendly, complex man. Watching him interact with his clients was fascinating.

But is it such a good idea for one man to produce wines for 62 clients?

News & Features  :  News

Wine Importer David Taub Passes Away

Taub built Palm Bay into a leading wine player by building brands like Cavit

Posted: November 9, 2012  By Mitch Frank

Blogs  :  Mixed Case: Opinion and Advice

Here's to the Winemakers

Let's stop pretending the person making the wine doesn't matter

Posted: November 8, 2012  By Mitch Frank

"I am a winemaker. Not a shepherd or a steward." Sine Qua Non founder Manfred Krankel spoke those words during the third day of Wine Spectator's New World Wine Experience, and I started clapping. Then I realized I was the only person clapping in a room packed with 800 people and sheepishly stopped. I shouldn't have.

The Wine Experience is Wine Spectator's annual gathering of the best winemakers in the world for three days of tasting, talking and having fun. The whole weekend provides a chance to discover some great terroirs-you can taste wines from more than 200 wineries, often from regions you've never tried-and chat with the people behind the wines. The winemaker or owner is often the one pouring. It's a chance to learn from some of the best.

But I often feel like people who work in wine (or write about it) like to pretend that winemakers don't actually matter. A decade ago, some consulting winemakers like Michel Rolland and Carlo Ferrini got a lot of attention. Today, so many producers I speak to insist that they are merely stewards of the vineyard. When they make the wine, they just try to let the vineyard speak for itself.

News & Features  :  News

Updated: Northeast Restaurants Fight Back Against Hurricane Sandy

The storm devastated large parts of the Northeast; now restaurateurs, wine retailers and wineries are assessing damages and serving their customers as best they can

Posted: November 7, 2012  By Mitch Frank, James Molesworth

News & Features  :  News

Serge Renaud, "Father of the French Paradox," Dies at 85

The French scientist argued that red wine was part of a healthy lifestyle, most famously in a 60 Minutes report that sparked a sales boom

Posted: November 1, 2012  By Mitch Frank

News & Features  :  News & Features

2012 New World Wine Experience: Testing Palates in a Blind Tasting

What do you get when you put a celebrity chef, an NBA star and an audience of 800 wine fans in a blind tasting? A lot of fun

Posted: October 24, 2012  By Mitch Frank

News & Features  :  News & Features

2012 New World Wine Experience: New Perspectives on California Rhône Reds

Thousands of miles from France, some brilliant young winemakers are mastering Rhône grapes

Posted: October 23, 2012  By Mitch Frank

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