Posted: June 1, 2006 By James Laube
Ready for a Pope Valley appellation? I am. It’s long overdue. This remote valley in the northeast area of Napa County deserves its own identity, yet legally it’s part of Napa Valley, which has some huge benefits for Napa vintners.
Posted: May 31, 2006 By James Laube
Hannah, my loyal canine companion, is on her last legs. She recently turned 14, which in dog years, puts her in her late 90s. I grew up with dogs and pets and have had my own dogs since my college days.
Posted: May 31, 2006 By James Suckling
Is anyone else getting a little fed up? I can’t understand why most of the big-name Bordeaux châteaus have not released their prices for 2005 futures, or en primeur. It seems that the proverbial iron is getting cold as the Bordelais try to figure out what prices they should sell their new wines for.
Posted: May 30, 2006 By James Laube
Which wines are the most difficult to evaluate in their infancy -- in barrel or bottle? For me, there are several contenders. Syrah can be devilish out of barrel because of its intensity. Big, rich, hearty and loaded with a beef stew of flavors.
Posted: May 30, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
This week, I'll be taking my turn at "Ask the Editors." Today and tomorrow (May 30-31: This post is now closed to questions ), you can ask me questions on any area I cover for Wine Spectator. This can include any of my tasting beats—Australia, New Zealand, Oregon and Washington, food and wine pairing, restaurants, or any other topics covered in my recent articles.
Posted: May 29, 2006 By James Suckling
I haven’t really seen all that many great red wines from Sicily. Sure I have given plenty of 90- and 91-point scores to wines from the island in recent years, but I am still waiting to score some wines in the mid to high 90s – real classic quality.
Posted: May 26, 2006 By James Suckling
CATANIA, ITALY: I had a fantastic dinner last night in a restaurant that felt like it was at the end of the earth. It was literally out in the middle of nowhere in Sicily, about two hours south of Catania in a town called Ragusa Ibla, a beautiful ancient city with an almost Spanish colonial feel to it.
Posted: May 26, 2006 By James Laube
There’s a thread on another Web site discussing the pros and cons of blind tasting. A reader sent me a clip from that dialogue citing one comment that blind tasting is “vastly overrated.” Really? Maybe the person meant "vastly underappreciated.
Posted: May 26, 2006 By James Molesworth
Concha y Toro is big – millions of cases big. But the winery is also committed to quality. Its Casa Concha line offers terrific value, while its higher-end wines are impressive. I sat down with one of the family owners, Isabel Guilisasti, and one of the winemakers, Ignacio Recabarren.
Posted: May 25, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
Thomas Keller's newest restaurant, scheduled to open in July, is going to feature home cooking. At least for now. Keller expects to revamp the whole thing next spring. In March, when the chef-owner of America's most-lauded restaurant bought another space a few blocks away from his original, no one could quite figure out what he was going to do with it.
Posted: May 25, 2006 By James Laube
Too bad Julio Gallo is no longer with us. I’d love to know his thoughts on two pressing industry issues -- closures and vintage dates. The late, great winemaker, who with his brother Ernest built E. & J.
Posted: May 24, 2006 By James Laube
Ridge Monte Bello 1971. It won first place at both the Napa and London tastings staged today. In second place was Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars 1973, which was the big winner the first time the comparative tasting of Cabernet-based wines from Bordeaux and California was held in Paris in 1976.
Posted: May 23, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
For years, Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc was the gold standard for New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. It's still good, but, for the past couple of vintages, a different wine has jumped out at me from my blind tastings as the most dramatic, most complete and harmonious of them all.
Posted: May 23, 2006 By James Molesworth
This past Saturday night in Myrtle Beach, my buddies and I were in the middle of a crazy golf trip. We’d just played four rounds of golf in two days (we'd go on to play a fifth the next day) under a bright sun, interrupted by a half day of cold rain and wind (which we played through).
Posted: May 22, 2006 By James Suckling
You asked for it, you got it! When our editor and publisher, Marvin R. Shanken, solicited member feedback on the blogs, the most frequent request was for interaction with us, the editors. We do encourage comments and questions every day on our blog posts, and we try to respond to them as often as we can during the workweek.
Posted: May 22, 2006 By Marvin R. Shanken
I'm addicted to Jack Bauer. That doesn't mean I'm not crazy about Tony Soprano. But I'm addicted to Bauer and 24 to the point that I want David Palmer back as President. Anyway, last week I went to a dinner party.
Posted: May 22, 2006 By James Laube
This week, the Paris Tasting (aka the Judgment of Paris), returns for a yet another curtain call. But that seminal event 30 years ago is not just being re-created, but turned into a three-ring circus with venues in Napa (at Copia), London and Sacramento.
Posted: May 22, 2006 By James Suckling
I was sitting in my office this morning tasting 2003 Tuscan reds, and my West Highland Terrier, Archie, started barking outside the door into the backyard. He looked terrified. In fact, he jumped through his dog door like he had seen a ghost.
Posted: May 19, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
Ambrogio Folonari and his son Giovanni are the newest figures from outside the state to make wine in Washington as part of a group of joint ventures with Allen Shoup's new Long Shadows operation. Their first wine, a Sangiovese-based red, was made in 2005 and could be released next year.
Posted: May 19, 2006 By James Molesworth
I met with Thierry Germain this week, who is on his first-ever trip to the U.S. Germain, 38, has turned his Domaine des Roches Neuves , located in Saumur-Champigny, into a benchmark estate for Loire Valley reds.
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