Posted: October 22, 2006 By All Access
Yeah, sure, this event is all about the great wines. And we could do a whole blog post waxing rhapsodic about any number of wines, like the 2001 Yquem. (Confession: We didn't spit it. So what--neither does Pierre Lurton , who runs the estate.
Posted: October 21, 2006 By All Access
What do the Wine Experience sommeliers do when they sneak away for an hour or so? They're certainly not relaxing with a glass of wine. We were taking a break ourselves, and spotted sommelier Richard Betts from Little Nell in Aspen drinking a nice, tall, cold pint of beer at Hog Island Oysters, at the back of the Ferry Terminal.
Posted: October 20, 2006 By All Access
During the Grand Tastings, it takes a lot to distract Wine Experience attendees from their single-minded focus on sampling as many great wines as possible in a few short hours. But the unexpected appearance of the Terminator can certainly do it.
Posted: October 20, 2006 By All Access
Every year at the Wine Experience, a devoted band of wine groupies awakens at an ungodly hour--no matter how much wine they had the night before, or how late they were out having dinner--just to be the first few in line to enter the tastings and claim the choice seats.
Posted: October 20, 2006 By James Suckling
This blog and the Grand Tasting at the California Wine Experience have a lot in common. I don’t have enough time for both of them! Last night was fantastic, with so many outstanding wines to taste, but I just didn’t have time to try all of them.
Posted: October 19, 2006 By All Access
We knew this year's California Wine Experience was going to get off to a good start before we even got to San Francisco. While we were boarding our plane from Newark, amid a bunch of people carrying wine-country guides and maps, we saw a woman in line sporting body art of grape bunches down her right shoulder.
Posted: October 19, 2006 By James Laube
Jesse Calderon has a great question about how I arrive at vintage chart ratings. I'm sure my colleagues will be glad to share their thoughts on this subject as well, since we all have our own ways of analyzing vintage quality.
Posted: October 19, 2006 By Kevin Vogt
What makes wine insanely great? Think back to the single greatest wine you have ever tasted. Surely you remember that experience like it was yesterday. Can you instantly recall everything about that moment? If you answered yes to the above question, you have it.
Posted: October 19, 2006 By James Suckling
I had dinner the other night in Los Angeles with some friends at a restaurant called Carlitos Gardel that specializes in Argentinean cuisine. I was impressed with the selection of Argentinean wines. I have noticed a number of restaurants, particularly in L.
Posted: October 18, 2006 By James Molesworth
On Monday, my merry band of BYOB friends descended on Triomphe for our monthly wine night. The food was excellent, with arguably one of the best racks of lamb I've ever tasted and a dynamite chicken liver crostini appetizer.
Posted: October 18, 2006 By James Laube
Most years, if you’re a farmer or winegrower or winemaker in California, you bet on the weather coming through. Most of the time the weather delivers, as in the right mix of sunshine and dryness. But this year is one of those years where the odds-makers would have handicapped this harvest as too close for comfort.
Posted: October 18, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
We have all been there. The server pours a splash of wine from the bottle you just ordered. Your job is to taste it and grant permission to pour for the table. Oh, the pressure! Be honest. You feel it too.
Posted: October 18, 2006 By James Suckling
I had dinner at my father’s the other night in San Diego. He is a keen Bordeaux lover but doesn’t buy much of the stuff because he is semi-retired and thinks it’s too expensive. He still remembers drinking Lafite and Mouton for $10 or $15 a bottle back in the 1970s, so he doesn’t like to drop hundreds of dollars on a bottle of fine wine.
Posted: October 18, 2006 By Brian Loring
When discussing winemaking, I try to be very careful about distinguishing science from religion. What do I mean by that? The fact that yeast converts sugar to alcohol and CO2 is definitely science. The fact that we prefer to use Assmanshausen yeast at our winery is religion, especially since we’ve never done trials to prove to ourselves that we really like it best.
Posted: October 17, 2006 By James Laube
On Sunday night I hooked up for dinner with my colleague Harvey Steiman and Australian winemaker Michael Twelftree. We dined at Cindy Pawlcyn’s new restaurant, Go Fish, south of St. Helena, in the building most recently occupied by Pinot Blanc.
Posted: October 17, 2006 By Charlie Trotter
One of the most appealing things to me about being in the restaurant business is that you have a chance to share a real generosity. It seems to me that to be truly successful as a restaurant owner, a chef, a dining room leader, a sommelier, or any other position in the hospitality/service world, you have to be someone that absolutely and completely gives from the heart.
Posted: October 17, 2006 By Kevin Vogt
If I offered you a job as a sommelier for the hottest chef ever, in the most exciting city on the planet, would you do it? Suppose I compensate you well for your efforts, would you do it now? What if I throw in use of the company jet? Are you with me? You don’t have to be a rock star to live like one, you just have to be Emeril’s wine guy.
Posted: October 17, 2006 By James Molesworth
I'm besieged with wine catalogs and e-mail offerings from all over. I love it—it helps me keep a pulse on what's going on at retail. Plus, competition is tough for retailers, which means better choices for the consumer.
Posted: October 16, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
Australia's Peter Lehmann makes two reserve-level wines from Shiraz. The better known wine is Stonewell , which is made in limited quantities, but in most vintages I have preferred Eight Songs. Now I know why.
Posted: October 16, 2006 By James Suckling
I went to a vertical tasting of Château Pichon-Longueville-Lalande in London a few weeks ago. London wine merchants Farr Vintners organized the event and Gildas d’Ollone, general manager of the estate, was there.
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