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Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

Meals to Remember

Posted: October 10, 2006  By James Laube

I savored many delicious meals on my trip to Italy. The food-and-wine pairings worked at every sitting. As is often the case when dining, the food is the star, and the wine is part of the supporting cast.

Blogs  :  Harvey Steiman At Large

The Other Resort for Willamette Valley

Posted: October 10, 2006  By Harvey Steiman

A plan to put a 50-room resort in Oregon's Dundee Hills, next door to Domaine Drouhin , isn't the only wine-country hotel on the drawing boards. On my recent visit to Willamette Valley, I talked with another developer who has an even more ambitious plan.

Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

Relaxing in Ravello and Capri

Posted: October 9, 2006  By James Laube

Having spent a few days in Positano, and briefly visiting Ravello, I can say that staying in this charming coastal town, about 30 minutes from Positano, would be a definite choice for a return and extended visit.

Blogs  :  Stirring the Lees with James Molesworth

The 2006 Northern Rhône Harvest

Posted: October 9, 2006  By James Molesworth

I just heard from Michel Chapoutier , who is not prone to hyperbole, but is crowing after finishing up his harvest. Thought you might be interested to hear what he said... "We ended the harvest on Friday, Sept.

Blogs  :  James Suckling Uncorked

Surprised in Mexico

Posted: October 9, 2006  By James Suckling

I went to a friend’s house for dinner over the weekend in Mexico City and he invited some people over for cheese and wine. It’s funny--I haven’t done that in ages and it was great fun. I guess in Italy and other parts of Europe few people think about having just cheese for dinner, although I do enjoy mozzarella with fresh tomatoes and basil from my garden in the summer for a light supper.

Blogs  :  Brian Loring: Ramblings from Pinot Prison

When to Pick?

Posted: October 6, 2006  By Brian Loring

One of the most difficult things a winemaker has to decide is when to pick fruit. It’s not just a matter of testing sugars and pH. Do you pick early, hoping to make a more elegant, structured, long-lived wine? Do you pick later, hoping to create a bigger, bolder, fruit-forward wine? Do you pick because it’s the only day you can get a truck? Do you pick because Tuesday is your lucky day? Or do you pick when the fruit is physiologically ripe for the growing region and let the chips fall where they may? At Loring Wine Company, we use a tried and true method--we wait to see what Adam and Dianna Lee from Siduri do.

Blogs  :  James Suckling Uncorked

Wine Lists With Wine Scores

Posted: October 6, 2006  By James Suckling

I went to dinner in Mexico City last night at Becco, a popular Italian restaurant with a very good wine list. Loads of interesting wines are available, from Roberto Voerzio ’s single-vineyard Barolos to Valpolicellas and Amarones from Dal Forno.

Blogs  :  Harvey Steiman At Large

Michelin's Secret Code

Posted: October 6, 2006  By Harvey Steiman

All the hoo-ha earlier this week about Michelin's San Francisco restaurant ratings focused on the announcement of the list of the 28 that earned stars. The book itself, with all 356 restaurant entries, presents a somewhat different picture.

Blogs  :  James Suckling Uncorked

A Bon Vivant for a Generation

Posted: October 5, 2006  By James Suckling

I was sad to read yesterday about the death of R.W. Apple Jr. of the New York Times. Not only was Johnny, 71, one of America’s great journalists, he was a great wine and food lover and a friend. I hadn’t seen Johnny in years, but I always kept up with his whereabouts through English wine merchant Bill Baker.

Blogs  :  Brian Loring: Ramblings from Pinot Prison

Getting Started in the Biz

Posted: October 5, 2006  By Brian Loring

I’m often asked how I got started in the wine business. My flippant response is “work-release program from prison." In reality, I got lucky. But I was the one who decided that it was something I wanted, and then I took the required steps once the opportunity arose.

Blogs  :  Harvey Steiman At Large

Keller Shows His Really Casual Side at Ad Hoc

Posted: October 4, 2006  By Harvey Steiman

A Napa Valley visitor wandering into Ad Hoc, the new restaurant in Yountville, would never know that it's Thomas Keller's latest venture. There is nothing about it to remind you of French Laundry , just up the street, which serves multicourse extravaganzas of endlessly inventive cuisine, or Per Se , his New York restaurant, where he does the same in lavish surroundings with killer views of Central Park.

Blogs  :  James Suckling Uncorked

Nueva Rioja en La Habana

Posted: October 4, 2006  By James Suckling

I had dinner the night before I left Cuba in a big outdoor restaurant called El Aljibe in Havana. The food is simple roasted chicken, fried pork, black beans and rice. It all comes out on the table family style and everyone digs in.

Blogs  :  Brian Loring: Ramblings from Pinot Prison

Welcome to a Winemaker's World

Posted: October 4, 2006  By Brian Loring

Hi, my name is Brian, and I’m a winemaker. It’s been two days since I last crushed fruit. Welcome to my blog! I was pleased that the gang at Wine Spectator asked me back--especially after reading my 2004 harvest blog.

Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

Making Friends With Animals

Posted: October 3, 2006  By James Laube

My friend Nino, whose clothes supply I tapped when my luggage was delayed, is a vet, and he loves canines. Periodically he’s checked out some of the winery and street dogs we’ve met at different intervals along the way.

Blogs  :  Harvey Steiman At Large

Michelin Slaps San Francisco Around

Posted: October 2, 2006  By Harvey Steiman

Michelin says its new Red Guide "confirms the high level of dining in San Francisco, the Bay area and wine country." It looks to me like more of a slap in the face. I mean, no restaurants in San Francisco worthy of three stars? Only two worthy of a pair? As a San Franciscan, I have to say, this city is better than that.

Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

A Day at the Beach

Posted: October 2, 2006  By James Laube

Today, as my Tuscan-Campania holiday settled into beach mode, I really relaxed and kicked back in the sand and sun. I took a leisurely boat ride with friends and swam in the brilliant blue sea off Positano and Amalfi.

Blogs  :  Stirring the Lees with James Molesworth

Aussie Wine With Food? Actually, Yes...

Posted: October 2, 2006  By James Molesworth

Australian wines are often criticized for not partnering well with food--their up-front, fruit-driven personalities aren't considered ideal for nuanced dishes, whereas wines with more subtle flavors and brighter acidities are thought to be ideal.

Blogs  :  James Suckling Uncorked

Mouton y Chocolate

Posted: October 1, 2006  By James Suckling

A couple of friends threw a birthday party for me in the coolest restaurant in Havana, La Guarida. For those who saw the Cuban movie Fresa y Chocolate , this is the restaurant where it was filmed. It is probably the best restaurant in Cuba, and it is also privately owned.

Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

Roaming Through Brunello

Posted: October 1, 2006  By James Laube

As you might expect, I’ve tasted dozens of great wines on my Tuscan holiday. Spent a couple of days in Brunello di Montalcino, at Altesino and Fuligni. From what the owners and winemakers say, the quality of the 2006 harvest--which is either finished or ending in many areas in Tuscany--is very high.

Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

Language Barriers

Posted: September 30, 2006  By James Laube

My Italian is about as good as my Spanish or French or German. I can get by--barely, at times--and have to rely on either the good English of the person I’m talking to or interviewing, or the use of a translator.

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