Posted: August 31, 2006 By James Laube
The first time I used the expression “wine geek” to describe a persnickety wine scribe at a winery-hosted luncheon, in 1983, my colleagues laughed. The words just came out of my mouth (and fit this guy’s personality perfectly).
Posted: August 31, 2006 By James Suckling
Flew into Tel Aviv for a few days with some friends yesterday on a whim. Everything was quiet, except for the occasional military helicopter speeding by overhead. It is my first time to Israel, and it is a trip I have wanted to make for a very long time.
Posted: August 30, 2006 By James Laube
Prices for a few elite California wines are heating up--although given the small size of these wineries, the rise is more like an outdoor patio heating lamp than a roaring bonfire on campus before a big football game.
Posted: August 30, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
Time was, Rosemount and Lindemans were near-iconic names. Their wines introduced a great many Americans to how good Australia can be. They offered modestly priced wines that sang a lilting tune of fresh fruit, with a smooch of sweet oak.
Posted: August 30, 2006 By James Molesworth
Labor Day is approaching, which means the summer is ending (sad), but the kids are going back the school (whew!). It won't be long before the grill is covered up for winter and the vegetable garden is a pile of mulch.
Posted: August 30, 2006 By James Suckling
I drank a bottle last night in Mykonos of what is supposed to be one of Greece’s greatest wines, the 2003 Alpha Estate Alpha One. The wine was good but slightly too jammy and disjointed to be very serious in quality.
Posted: August 29, 2006 By James Suckling
Sometimes I get really tired of reading wine bottle back labels. Some can be on the level of information provided on breakfast cereal boxes or soft-drink bottles. Here’s one I noticed after a friend brought a bottle of Australian Pinot Noir to dinner in Mykonos.
Posted: August 28, 2006 By James Laube
The other day, I tried the new Chasseur Pinot Noirs --which are among the most exciting 2004 Pinots I’ve tasted from California--and the blind tasting reminded me how different these wines are in style from the Sonoma winery's Chardonnays.
Posted: August 28, 2006 By James Molesworth
With his win this past weekend, Tiger Woods continued his amazing run - four straight. He did it in the pouring rain, too. (On a side note, I advanced out of the qualifying round in my club championship, playing in the pouring rain on Sunday as well).
Posted: August 28, 2006 By James Suckling
I am always surprised to come across restaurants in unlikely places with excellent wines. For example, last night I took some friends to dinner at La Cucina di Danielle in Mykonos, and we drank some extraordinary wines from the restaurant’s wine list, including 2002 Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape White Vieilles Vignes , 2000 Domenico Clerico Barolo Ciabot Mentin Ginestra , and 1997 Casanova di Neri Brunello di Montalcino Cerretalto.
Posted: August 25, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
Oregon's potential for Pinot Noir has long attracted winemakers from elsewhere. The earliest guys, including David Lett, Dick Erath and Dick Ponzi, came from California in the 1970s. Robert Drouhin from Burgundy made his first vintage at Domaine Drouhin Oregon in 1988.
Posted: August 25, 2006 By James Suckling
I attended a playful dinner last night at a friend’s house in Mykonos. My buddy is a big-time wine collector, and he has been nice enough to share many great bottles with me – although last night was not the case! We spend a lot of time together tasting (and drinking) good bottles and traveling around France and Italy.
Posted: August 24, 2006 By James Laube
I’ve never wanted to be a restaurant critic. Having to eat, think, take notes and dine out night after night, or lunch after lunch, has never had any appeal. Too many rich, buttery, artery-clogging, pound-inducing, uber calories and late nights for me.
Posted: August 24, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
While Joël Robuchon is shaking up New York with his new Atelier there, my wife and I stopped by his Las Vegas version earlier this week. We were driving back to California from Colorado. Las Vegas, with so many dining options, makes a welcome stopover midway through the two-day drive.
Posted: August 24, 2006 By James Molesworth
On Monday night, I was at a Rhône tasting at New York’s Tribeca Grill. It started at 5:30. I got there at 5:35, and I was not the first person in the room. Not by a long shot. By 6:00, the place was packed.
Posted: August 23, 2006 By James Suckling
I had dinner the other night at Au Caprice des Deux in St.-Tropez with some friends before going clubbing. The food was fancy bistro fare, good and hearty, with lots of flavor. Most people had oven-roasted lamb crusted with parsley.
Posted: August 22, 2006 By James Laube
I still visit dozens of wineries each year, but usually only for work-related reasons. Come weekends or holidays, or even when guests arrive in town, I try to keep my distance from the cellars and tasting rooms.
Posted: August 21, 2006 By James Laube
George Taber stopped by my office in Napa on Friday. The Block Island, R.I., author is researching a new book, Battle For The Bottle , which is about wine closures. Specifically it’s about cork--its past, present and future (?)--and its challengers: synthetics, twist offs, glass tops, crown caps and whatever alternatives might emerge in coming years.
Posted: August 21, 2006 By James Suckling
You have to wonder how much prestige cuvée Champagne is consumed in dark, loud and smoky clubs around the world. I was in Les Cave du Roi last weekend in St. Tropez, and I saw buckets full of 1999 Roederer Cristal being consumed like bottles of Evian at a beach clubs during the day.
Posted: August 21, 2006 By James Molesworth
Every six months, I do an inventory on my cellar, if for nothing else than to catch all those bottles that I forgot I actually drank, ahem. It’s been eye-opening for me to see how my cellar has changed over the last two years.
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